This week, one of the best horror films in recent memory leads the Blu-ray/DVD charge in “The Invisible Man.” Plus, “Wildlife” joins the Criterion Collection! It all makes for a really solid slate today. Read on for more.
PICK OF THE WEEK
Giving Blumhouse and filmmaker Leigh Whannell this Universal monster to play with resulted in a truly unique horror effort. As much about gaslighting and trauma as about scares, Elisabeth Moss turns in phenomenal work as the woman tormented by an ex that she can’t see, yet knows is there. That focus is part of what we addressed in our review here on the site:
The unknown is the ultimate fear for many. That is until something like Leigh Whannell’s “The Invisible Man” comes along to suggest true horror lies in the unseen familiar.
“The Invisible Man” has way more on its mind than your garden variety fright flick. One of 2020’s best movies, it’s an easy top pick today!
Total Box Office: $64,914,050
Major Awards: None yet
For today’s Vintage pick, we turn our attention to baseball, which many miss, and which may well be starting back up in a month or two. As such, it’s a good time to revisit “For Love of the Game,” Kevin Costner‘s most underrated sports outing. Playing an aging pitcher thinking back over the love of his life, while pitching the game of his life, Costner is at his best. The Los Angeles Times thought baseball fans would thoroughly enjoy the picture:
Those who have even a small soft spot for baseball’s soothing rhythms will be hard-pressed to resist it.
OTHER FILMS BEING RELEASED
Here is what else is being released today, aside from the sole recommended title in “The Invisible Man.”
This look at the year leading to the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin, Israel’s Prime Minister, is a rather compelling historical drama. Disturbing, hypnotic, and even timely, watching the evolution of a killer here makes for a heavy, yet interesting, watch. The Hollywood Reporter had this to say:
An assassin’s actions can never be thoroughly explained, but this ragged, powerful film cogently indicts the dark, repressive voices in any society who can set the stage for violence.
History junkies may want to seek this one out.
A documentary that doesn’t hide its subject within the title, we have a look at Robbie Robertson’s collaboration with The Band. In doing so, it becomes something mostly for fans, but the volatile nature of the relationship should have wider appeal. The Washington Post found a lot to like here:
Even at its most painful, the Band’s story captures something golden, incendiary and wistfully beautiful – “so beautiful,” Robertson reflects, “that it went up in flames.”
Something for those who love The Band or Robertson to potentially pick up!
“Premature” undeniably exists within familiar romantic drama territory, but a keen sense of realism and visual style helps set it apart.
Special Criterion Collection Section
Our first of three Criterion options today is this 1970 effort from John Cassavetes. “Husbands” features Cassavetes himself acting alongside Peter Falk and Ben Gazzara in a humorous but unflinchingly real look at mid-life masculinity. The Collection makes the sales pitch like so:
By turns painfully funny and woundingly perceptive, this “comedy about life, death, and freedom” (as its tagline stated) stands as perhaps the most fearless, harrowingly honest deconstruction of American manhood ever committed to film.
A strong options for Cassavetes aficionados.
Next we have Martin Scorsese‘s early work getting this very special treatment. “Scorsese Shorts” covers five of the master’s first short films, highlighted by “American Boy” and “Italianamerican.” Also included are “The Big Shave,” “It’s Not Just You, Murray!,” and “What’s a Nice Girl Like You Doing in a Place Like This?.” Here is how the Criterion Collection sums up this box set:
Touching on many of Scorsese’s key themes—Italian American identity, family, his beloved New York City—these are hilarious, candid, and illuminating works from the preeminent American filmmaker of our time.
Fans of the filmmaker should definitely pick this one up!
Also joining the Collection this week is Paul Dano‘s stunning directorial debut, “Wildlife.” A truly terrific effort from Dano, who not only puts forth wonderful direction, but penned a splendid script with Zoe Kazan. Top to bottom, it’s magnificent and powerful, making this sales pitch from Criterion quite the easy sell:
The directorial debut of actor Paul Dano reveals a filmmaking talent of remarkable intelligence and restraint. Adapted by Dano and Zoe Kazan from the novel by Richard Ford, this meticulously crafted portrait of the American nuclear family in crisis charts the rift that forms within a 1960s Montana household when the father and breadwinner (Jake Gyllenhaal) abruptly departs to fight the forest fires raging nearby, leaving his restless wife (Carey Mulligan, in a performance of fearless emotional honesty) and teenage son (Ed Oxenbould) to pick up the pieces.
One of 2018’s best films, it’s a must-own!
Will you be picking up “The Invisible Man” or anything else this week on Blu-ray or DVD? Share in the comments below!