This week, one of Nicole Kidman‘s most divisive recent releases, “Destroyer,” leads the charge of new Blu-Ray/DVD titles. With few releases to be excited for today, Kidman’s star vehicle takes top honors by proxy. What else is actually coming out? Well, let’s dive into that right now. Read on for more…
PICK OF THE WEEK
Nicole Kidman does something very different in “Destroyer,” a standard police procedural only elevated by her work. Kidman is very good, broken and intense in a way she’s never explored before. She keeps your attention with a hypnotic turn that is better than the movie arguably deserves. Director Karyn Kusama made a terrific choice in hiring her for the part. Almost everything else, however, went off the rails. From our Telluride Film Festival review that Mark filed:
Kidman carries the often out of tune “Destroyer” through its ups and downs.
“Destroyer” only takes top honors due to the lack of competition this week. Still, if you’re a Nicole Kidman fan, this is definitely a curiosity, at least.
Special Features: N/A
Total Box Office: $1,533,324
Major Awards: Nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama (for Kidman) at the Golden Globes
Almost three years after it hit theaters, this very unique documentary finally comes to home video. Weird and initially kind of silly, the dark underbelly is slowly revealed within the world of competitive tickling. Once it does, things become decidedly unsettling and more about what harm online bullying can do. It turns out to be less a niche subject exploration and something far more universal. The Playlist was fond of its oddness:
Simply delightful in just how stranger than fiction it manages to be.
“Tickled” is not your average doc. What initially seems just like a lark eventually becomes much more. If you never saw it, it’s worth picking up today.
Special Features: N/A
Total Box Office: $613,956
Major Awards: None
In honor of this week’s release of “Avengers: Endgame,” the pick today is going to be an obvious one. It’s “Avengers: Infinity War,” the predecessor to “Endgame.” The Marvel Cinematic Universe is moving towards a whole new layout after this upcoming film, so it makes perfect sense to look back to our heroes’ initial battle with Thanos. Additionally, it’s one of the better MCU offerings to date. Clayton loved it, as you can see here in our review on the site:
What has been assembled (pun intended) is a gargantuan assimilation of action, drama, and style. The symbiosis of good versus evil is the pillar of its existence and measures up to a deeply felt extravaganza for the superhero senses. In many aspects, this is a remarkable film and the best that the MCU has offered yet.
We all know you’re seeing the latest MCU offering this weekend, so prep for it with this box office juggernaut!
OTHER FILMS BEING RELEASED
Here’s a look at what else is hitting shelves today, besides the two recommended titles in “Destroyer” and “Tickled”:
This documentary follows the residents of an Arizona town called Bisbee, as they stage a dramatic recreation of a traumatic immigrant deportation that occurred in 1917. What could have been a simple talking head affair instead is a hybrid tale that captures your attention immediately. Plus, it has an incredibly timely message to share. Variety had this to say about the work:
A bracing documentary that blends fiction and reality in ways that both complicate and enhance the material’s core themes.
If it sounds interesting to you, it’s worth considering as an extra option this week.
Box Office: $117,470
One of the worst movies of 2019 so far, this thriller wastes a brilliant premise. Escape games are a ton of fun and perfectly suited for this sort of B-movie entertainment. Alas, there was no entertainment to be found. Instead, just boredom and indifferent filmmaking. The AV Club rightly dismissed this one:
Clumsily scripted and extremely predictable, Escape Room absolutely deserves to be unloaded into the cinematic landfill that is early January.
Avoid it at all costs.
Box Office: $56,972,455 (and counting)
“The Gospel According to André”
Another doc hitting shelves today, this one is a look at the life of fashion icon Andre Leon Talley. If the name doesn’t ring a bell, you’re not alone, so fear not. However, that may well be a perfect entry point to this easily accessible movie. From The Hollywood Reporter:
The Gospel According to Andre should prove catnip for fashion buffs.
Fashionistas would do well to consider it!
Box Office: $400,713
Special Criterion Collection Section
“A Face in the Crowd”
Our one and only title coming to Criterion today is a satire from director Elia Kazan. Starring Andy Griffith, some have pointed to this as a prognostication of where cable news has gone to (or devolved to) today. It’s truly prescient and unsettling to watch. The Collection has this to say about the work:
Though the film was a flop on its initial release, subsequent generations have marveled at its eerily prescient diagnosis of the toxic intimacy between media and politics in American life.
A timely title to consider this week!
ALSO OF NOTE
Coming to 4K is this classy horror offering. Filmmaker Robert Eggers crafted a fright flick that stood out in the marketplace three years ago. The indie horror resurgence that we’ve seen recently is due in large part to how this movie captured our imagination and invaded our nightmares. Black Phillip is one of the genre’s modern iconic figures. From our review here on the site back in 2016:
Armed with absolutely incredible production design, a tremendous visual flair, top notch attention to period detail, and a committed cast, Eggers has all the ingredients here for a genre classic.
“The Witch” looks great in 4K, so if you’ve never picked it up on Blu-Ray or DVD, now is your chance to own the best version yet!
Special Features: Audio Commentary and more
“Shameless: The Complete Ninth Season”