Aug 3rd - 10th Downloads
& DVDs
 
  •  Star Light (2020):

    This horror-thriller would have been a drive-in movie feature in the ‘50s or ‘60s, a teen cult movie in the ‘70s and ‘80s, and what it is today - a quick direct-to-video film that bypassed theatres – even if theatres had been open.  It’s a summertime teen-oriented scare-fest that starts with Dylan (Cameron Johnson) just enjoying his skateboard, when he accidentally crashes into a young woman that he recognizes instantly.  She is pop music star Bebe A. Love (Scout Taylor-Compton of “Halloween II”), and she tells him she’s in trouble.  She is trying to get away from someone, and has no place to go in this small town in which she mysteriously finds herself.  Dylan decides to take her to his friend Nick’s house.  Other friends arrive, and all are enthusiastic about helping out the star … until her manager shows up, demands that they hand her over, and if they refuse, they will die.  And that’s where it starts, with the friends being dispatched, one-by-one by an evil force … but they won’t give up Bebe.  Rated 18A for violence.

     

  • The Resistance Fighter (2020):

    In the summer of 1944 as the Hitler’s armies began to struggle against the Allies, this true story tells the gripping tale of the man who had been referred to in Polish pop culture as “Poland’s James Bond.”  Jan Nowak-Jezioranski (Phillipe Tlokinski) was a member of the underground who, after meeting with Winston Churchill and his own military leaders, agreed to set up a final push by the Resistance in order to move the Germans out of Warsaw, and ultimately out of Poland.  The Russians were pushing the German army back across Polish lines, and the leaders of Poland did not want this push to stall, and have the war end leaving Germany with control of their country.  Excellent locations make us feel that we are there, in Warsaw at the height of German occupation, while the costumes, aircraft, and vehicles are all perfect recreations that add a strong sense of authenticity.  WWII buffs will find this one of the great untold stories.  Rated 14A.

  • The Soul Collector (2019):

    Set and shot in South Africa in 1977, this disturbing horror film is all the more disconcerting because very little about its plot is spelled out for us, and since it does not feature stars recognizable to North American audiences, even determining who is good and who is bad based on their casting is a problem for us.  Lazarus (Tshamano Sebe) is a black man with a reputation for being a witch doctor, a shaman.  He is befriended by a young white woman named Mary (Keita Luna), and neither really understands the role of the other as their relationship progresses, until it becomes clear that Lazarus is using Mary for something for which we are not immediately able to understand.  But images of a talking corpse (very scary), a dead monkey (very realistic), and the concerns of Mary’s adoptive parents on their large plantation, soon make us realize that Lazarus has been collecting souls for a long time, and that Mary’s role in this is very frightening.  Rated 14A.

  • Work It (2020):

    Alicia Keyes produced this dramatic musical comedy that is being distributed by Netflix worldwide.  It's a story that has been told many times and in many ways, but then, so has the theme of Romeo and Juliet, and yet the fresh approaches continue to hold up.  Sabrina Carpenter, who has performed as a singer and a dancer in a number of Disney productions, is the lead character here, Quinn Ackerman.  She has just been admitted to the college of her dreams in a performing arts program, and all she needs to do is audition her dance team to satisfy the judges, and she's in.  Quinn manages to acquire enough talent in a rag-tag girls' dance troupe, and that should make things easy.  There's just one problem - Quinn herself cannot dance.  So there's the challenge - how does she prep for the audition, on which her entire academic career depends, without the one innate ability that's required?  Another Disney alum, Jordan Fisher also stars, as does Australian singer/dancer/actor Keiynan Lonsdale who was in the "Divergent" series.  Filmed in both Toronto and LA.  Rated 14A.



     

    Tiny Creatures (2020) (TV series):

    True-life animal adventures have long been a staple of television, with such series as "Shark Week" bringing us the biggest and the most frightening action scenes.  There's another world though, a much smaller one, in which the battles for survival and for life and death occur every day, sometimes right under our own feet.  This Netflix documentary is excellent for younger viewers - I would say 10 and up - as it explores the world of the field mouse, and all the dangers that exist, from people and their traps, to hawks and owls.  In another episode, little ducklings, all decked out in yellow fuzz, swim in line behind their mothers, but have to be wary of what's below the water, as fish and other predators lurk about.  The rating is G, suitable for all family members, and even little animals in danger get away ... but very sensitive younger children may find this a little intense.

New on CRAVE

Laurel Canyon (2020) (Part 1)

For those who lived the pop music of the '60s, or for those who wonder how the base of pop music that exists today was built, this exceptional documentary is just perfect.  Laurel Canyon was, in the days of the early-to-mid '60s, a part of greater Los Angeles that attracted musicians from all over the world.  It was, then, a cheap place to live, with rental houses available at bargain basement rates, and no shortage of sex, drugs, and rock and roll.  It was a place where Eric Clapton first met Joni Mitchell at a barbecue put on by Mama Cass Elliot.  It was a place where The Beatles schmoozed with one of their idols, Little Richard, and it was a place where Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young hung out together, wrote music together, and played what would become the hits of the century in their Laurel Canyon backyard.  Mama Michelle Phillips speaks candidly in an interview recorded last year as to how her inability to be with just one man hurt her then-husband John beyond belief, but ... he knew what he was getting, she says.  Interviews with Linda Ronstadt, Don Henley, and Jackson Brown are included, and there's a great look back at other Canyon denizens such as The Doors' Jim Morrison, and singer-songwriter Carol King.  Rated 14A.  Part 2 will be released next week.

The Witcher (TV Series, 2019):
This Netflix original series is a sword-and-sandal thriller that follows Geralt of Rivera, a solitary monster-killer who roams the earth righting the wrongs created by monstrosities everywhere.  Henry Cavill stars as the title character, based on a novel series.  A second season has already been announced, so you can binge watch this one safely.  Rated 14A. 

 

New on AMAZON PRIME

Radioactive (2019):

Madame Curie is, in this Amazon original, far more than just a commonly used answer-and-question on the game show Jeopardy.  Rosamund Pike takes on the role of the woman born Marie Sklowdoska in Warsaw, Poland in 1867, and who died at a relatively young age in 1934 in a French sanatorium where she suffered from aplastic anaemia, the result of a working lifetime dealing with radioactive elements.  She was the first woman to win a Nobel prize, and to this day is the only woman to win a Nobel prize twice.   Sklowdoska met and married fellow scientist Pierre Curie in Paris and their work together pioneered the field of radioactivity, a term that Marie coined, and radioactive elements. He is played here by Sam Riley.  She created portable X-Ray machines that could be transported to field hospitals, and she operated such machines during WWI, doing so with no protection whatsoever, as the results of exposure to X-rays was not yet known.  This film is both a scientific biography and a love story telling the tale of two people so perfectly matched that their romance was as amazing as their discoveries.  Rated 14A. 


New on DISNEY +

The Mandalorian, Chapter 6:
This Star Wars series made for streaming, is perhaps the most true and authentic spinoff that the franchise has offered in more than 20 years.  Taking place in the days of Jawas and Ewoks, it follows the adventures of a masked bounty hunter and his baby Yoda capturee across the galaxy.  The flavour is very much that of the Empire Strikes Back era, with outstanding special effects and a superb story.  Rated PG.