SALT LAKE CITY (KUTV) — This week features three theatrical releases moving into the digital-to-buy category and an interesting selection of predominantly genre titles coming to DVD and Blu-ray.
- All My Life - Based on a true story, "All My Life" is a traditional romantic drama that sees Jennifer (Jessica Rothe) and Sol (Harry Shum Jr. ) fall in love. While wedding planning, Sol is diagnosed with cancer. As the couple drifts into a place of despair, their friends rally to remind them that life is a gift and love should be celebrated. Suitable for those looking for a post-Valentine's Day sniffles.
- Monster Hunter - Paul W. S. Anderson's adaptation of the video game "Monster Hunter" is as mindless as anything the director has produced to this point. It's big, loud and often nonsensical. The story is built around a storm cloud that magically teleports a group of American soldiers to another planet where giant monsters roam the deserts. The soldiers, led by Artemis (Milla Jovovich), must find a way to return to home while fighting off a variety of monsters. Tony Jaa co-stars and Ron Perlman makes a extended cameo that points to the possibility of a sequel.
- Supernova - Sam (Colin Firth) and Tusker (Stanley Tucci) have been together for more than twenty years. "Supernova" sees the couple set out on a road trip to visit the places and friends that meant the most to them. Two years prior, Tusker was diagnosed with early-onset dementia. His mind is dulling and his passion for life is fading. A nice character drama for those with an inkling towards art house cinema.
NEW DVD AND BLU-RAY RELEASES
- The Swordsman - This South Korean period action film sees Tae-yul, a legendary swordsman living in isolation and shame with his daughter. When she is kidnapped, Tae-yul embarks of a violent journey to get her back. There are some classic topes in play in "The Swordsman." Namely, Tae-yul is going blind as he embarks on is search for redemption. Nice action sequences, solid acting. Absolutely worth a look for Asian cinema fans.
- Random Acts of Violence - Based on the 2010 comic by Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray, "Random Acts of Violence" sees Todd Walkley (Jesse Williams) and Ezra (Jay Baruchel) on a press tour for their new grisly comic based on a series of real killings. When their tour takes them to the town where the real-life inspiration for the story, a series of horrific murders inspired by the comic book's art take place. Co-written and directed by Baruchel, the film features brutal violence with a quasi-meta look at the way the media covers violence.
- Archenemy - Joe Manganiello stars as Max Fist, a man who claims to have lost his super powers when he fell to Earth from another dimension. Thought to be insane, Max is befriended by a teenager who hopes that the man's former powers return so that together they can take down a drug syndicate.
- Lovecraft Country: The Complete First Season - Inspired by Matt Ruff's novel, "Lovecraft County" extends the original story and explores racism in the 1950s while working in horror elements from the writing of H.P. Lovecraft. It's a combination of sources that shouldn't work. More often than not they do.
- A Call to Spy - Nased the true story of Virginia Hall (played by Sarah Megan Thomas, who also wrote the screenplay), an American who was recruited by the British to act as a spy during World War II. Filled with twists and betrayals, "A Call to Spy" also features incredible bravery, compassion and trust. It’s smaller, less bombastic than the D-Day invasion or the Dunkirk retreat. It’s still an incredibly important story. I appreciate the opportunity to learn it.
- Harley Quinn: The Complete First and Second Seasons - After breaking up with the Joker, Harley Quinn looks to establish herself as a super villain, not just a super-villain's ex. Despite its bright colors and manic animation, "Harley Quinn" is decidedly not a children's show.
- Jetsons: The Movie - Released in 1990, "The Jetsons: The Movie" saw George Jetson moving the family to an asteroid where he has been hired to run a manufacturing plant. Directed by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera, the film mixed traditional and CGI animation. Notoriously, Janet Waldo, the original actress who voiced Judy Jetson , was replaced by Tiffany in an attempt to attract younger viewers. It's more of an oddity than an essential release.
- Mandabi - Written and directed by Senegalese filmmaker Ousmane Sembène, "Mandabi" (or "The Money Order") follows an unemployed man who sets out to cash a money order from his nephew and discovers that bureaucracy and corruption are closely connected.
- Wisting: Season 1 - Based on two Jørn Lier Horst novels, "The Caveman" and "The Hunting Dogs," "Wisting" is a highly-regarded Norwegian police procedural centered on detective William Wisting (Sven Nordin). Carrie-Anne Moss appears in the first five episodes as an FBI agent.
- Mayor - A documentary that profiles Musa Hadid, mayor of Ramallah (the unofficial capitol of the Palestinian State) as he goes about his daily business. David Osit’s film is simple and incredibly interesting.