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August 14th - 20th Downloads
& DVDs
 
  • Avengers: Infinity War:

    With an estimated budget of $300 - $400 million, this is one of the most expensive films ever made. The movie is stunning in many ways.  The action is non-stop and seems to numb us after a while, because it goes on for two hours and thirty-six minutes with barely a break for a quick breath.  And it actually plays out like five movies in one, with the overriding central theme the all-consuming desire of the wannabe god Thanos (James Brolin) to take over the entire universe.  Thanos, along with his adopted children, has been mowing a swath through planet after planet, and system after system, annihilating half the population in each, in a quest to, in his opinion, control the number of people using up resources so that the universe will last longer under his domination.  With 64 separate Avengers appearing, as well as teaming up with the Guardians of the Galaxy, Robert Downey's Iron Man, the Incredible Hulk, Captain America, Ant Man, and an ongoing list that is overwhelming, the biggest problem is in balancing which superhero gets what screen time.  Dr. Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) was probably my favourite character with his ability to bend and shape time, and Thor (Chris Hemsworth) was treated as sort of an afterthought.  The basic plot is a sort of Lord of the Rings Trilogy thing, a quest by Thanos to secure six stones that each provide a power to the one that holds them.  The time stone is the most difficult to get a handle on, because the holder can play back events and choose a different timeline if things go wrong, so it’s difficult to follow that story line.  We shift from Africa and the Wakenda of Black Panther to New York, home of Tony Stark and Spider-Man, to Scotland where Captain America (Steve Rogers) now hangs his shield, to deep space where the Guardians pursue Thanos and his crew.  This movie was part one, and it is not resolved ... part two, which was shot concurrently, will be in theatres next spring.  I liked it just fine, but there was a lot to track, and you have to know your Marvel Universe to take full advantage.  Rated 14A. 

     

  • Bad Samaritan:

    Although very derivative of the thriller/suspense genre, this low-budget cat-and-mouse story will keep you knotted up inside once the real action, which takes a little too long to get going, settles in.  Sean (Irish actor Robert Sheehan) has a great eye for photography, knows his way around various devices, but is not amounting to very much because he refuses to become a suit or a drone.  Instead, he is a valet car-parker for an Italian restaurant in the Portland, OR setting, along with his pal Derek (Carlito Olivero).  They use a number of smart-appearing ways to burgle the homes of those who leave their cars, either checking the GPS for the home address, or looking at registration and insurance documents. One night a guy named Cale shows up in a Maserati.  He goes in to meet friends, and Sean heads to his home, a very elaborate, high-end house with all the security bells and whistles.  While stealing, he discovers a door with a significant lock.  Believing it must hide a treasure trove, the finds the key on the ring with the car keys, opens the door, and finds a young woman gagged, beaten and bruised, and trussed up with leather and chains.  Sean attempts to free her, but runs out of time. Sean leaves the girl, promising to get back, he returns to the restaurant, gives up the car, and calls 911 from a payphone.  He watches from his own parked car as the police arrive, but Cale finesses his way out of any kind of investigation, and now, because of the home security video feeds, Sean is in Cale's cross-hairs.  Cale is a serial killer, torturing his female victims first ... Sean can't get the police to believe him, the FBI isn't much better, and Cale is on his trail, leaving horror behind him as he goes after Sean's family and friends.  There are many make-you-jump moments  Worth it for some good chills and a few things you won't see coming.  Rated 18A.

  • How to talk to Girls at Parties:

    The short version of this story is that a couple of free-spirit aliens are bouncing their way through the galaxy, when they hit upon one of the most dangerous places in the known universe – the London suburb of Croydon, where almost anything goes when it comes to partying.  The movies promo material views this as “Romeo & Juliette, but with punks and aliens.” That’s about the size of it as Zan (Elle Fanning), breaks away from her group and heads into the thick of the human world for a little bit of fun. Also stars Nicole Kidman and Ruth Wilson.  Only works if you are really in the frame of mind for something very, very different! Rated 18A.

  • Suicide Squad:

    Huge at the box office worldwide, this Marvel Comics feature has Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) at the head of a top secret government project to overcome an enormous force bent on world domination.  Her solution is to make deals with large numbers of incarcerated anti-heroes and could-have-been superheroes, all in one kind of restraint or another.  If this disparate gang of talented but mostly evil individuals fail at the task, it is their failing, and if they succeed, it’s the brilliance of Waller’s strategy.  A problem with the movie is that it takes on far too many characters, trying to acquaint us, on some level, with each, and then moving on to the next too quickly.  Highlight of the bunch is Margot Robbie as Harley Queen, the baddest of the bad girls, and other powerful baddies including Deadshot (Will Smith) The Joker (Jared Leto), and Panda Man (James McGowan).  Once the action picks up, it’s non-stop, with lots of things blowing up. Rated 14A.


     

     

    Daddy's Home 2:

    If you like Will Ferrell and his one-dimensional man-child characters, if you liked the set-up from the first Daddy's Home movie from 2015, and if you like the comedic goings-on around the challenges of a blended family, you'll be just fine with this sequel that adds one more element - two extra dads.  Christmas is only days away when Dusty (Mark Wahlberg), co-dad to the blended family in which Brad (Will Ferrell) has married Dusty's former wife Sara (Linda Cardellini) learns that his seldom-seen father Kurt (Mel Gibson) is coming for the Holidays.  They have been estranged for years. Turns out that, by script-writing coincidence, Brad's father (John Lithgow), is coming for the Holidays too.  He's the same kind of politically correct, smarmy character as his son. There are some funny scenes here, and some good lines.   I personally do not like Will Ferrell's characters in most of what he does - he's the producer here, by the way -  it's a comedy with some funny bits, the kids' performances are just fine.  Rated PG.  



Picnic at Hanging Rock:

A mini-series based on the movie based on the stage play based on the novel, the story here has intrigue and tension as a group of school girls in Australian, circa 1900, disappear mysteriously on Valentine's Day, 1900.  With the permission of their governess, the girls climb the rocks above the picnic site, find a cave, and one-by-one slip into a trance-like state and are enticed, or directed into the most dangerous parts of the cave.  Very scary stuff, with some good performances by the girls.  Rated 14A. 

New on AMAZON PRIME

Battalion (2018):

Here's a hint .. if you are going to produce a sci-fi movie about an alien invasion that the US Marines take on face-to-face, might be a good idea to get some Americans
to play the Marines instead of a group of Aussies who spend more energy struggling to put on and American accent than they do fighting the baddies, who look like they were created by a little kid with a box of crayons and a scanner. So this is a warning, not a recommendation. The premise is just fine, but the film, shot entirely in Australia, pretending to be such places as Los Angeles and New York, just doesn't work on any level, so if you value your time, you may not want to get caught up in this alleged action thriller, hoping that it's going to get better. It does not. Rated 14A.