Feb 1 - 7th Downloads
& DVDs
  •  Ghost Busters: Afterlife (2021):

    I found this sequel to the two "Ghostbusters" movies from 1984 and 1989 (but unrelated to the all-female remake from 2016) an extremely pleasant surprise on many levels. It is a most fitting tribute to the source material when we saw New York City haunted by ghosts and demons large and small. Here, Carrie Coon ("Fargo," "Avengers Infinity War") is a single mom named Callie, who is about to get evicted from her big-city apartment because she can't make the rent. She is single mom to a 12-year-old girl, Phoebe (Mckenna Grace from "Young Sheldon") and 15-year-old Trevor (Vancouver's Finn Wolfhard of "Stranger Things"). Phoebe is like a mini mad scientist, completely immersed in science, and is truly the star of this movie. Trevor is a typical teenage boy who has good moments and bad ones when he exercises his judgement. Coincident to the eviction, Mom Calle learns that her estranged father, whom she never really knew, had died in Oklahoma (played beautifully here by Southern Alberta) leaving her a "dirt farm." Seems like things might be looking up, but on arrival, they find the place beyond ramshackle, and worth nothing other than some debts left behind. We learn that Callie's father was Dr. Egon Spengler (the late Harold Ramis from the original movie), who seems to have abandoned her at an early age. When the hauntings begin all over again, the two kids find the Ghostbuster ambulance in the barn, they get it running, find the plasma gear, figure that out, and begin as a new generation of spirit hunters. Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, and Ernie Hudson from the original film appear late in the final act, and there's a tearful special effect as well that is a crowning touch on an action-adventure thriller that is devoid of bad language inappropriate dialogue, that is full of excitement and great special effects, and that requires you to sit through the credits to see a final scene with Sigourney Weaver from the original movie. I loved it! Rated 14A.


  • Clifford the Big Red Dog (2021):

    Based on the more than 31 "Clifford" children's books by author Norman Bridwell, the first of which was published in 1963 this live action-CGI animation film focuses on a middle school girl named Emily (Darby Camp) who has trouble fitting in at home, and trouble fitting in at school. She becomes the owner of a little red puppy, thanks to a magical animal rescuer (John Cleese), and soon sees the pup Clifford, as her best friend. Clifford (voice of David Allen Grier) does not remain a puppy very long, and soon he is gigantic, and no longer fits in the New York apartment that is home to 12-year-old Emily. There has to be a villain afoot to drive the drama here, so we get a genetics company that decides Clifford is just the thing to lead its research on creating mega-sized animals after seeing the giant pooch on social media. The head of the company lies to the police, saying that it's his dog and that they need to find it and return it to him. Soon Emily is on the run along with Clifford and her affable but clueless Uncle Casey (Jack Whitehall). The genetics company wants to get Clifford on its operating table to see what makes the big dog tick, and the drama is all-encompassing as Emily tries to save him. This is one of those family films that children will absolutely love, and adults will also find it surprisingly engaging and enigmatic, but very sensitive younger kids may find the story too intense, especially when the big dog is headed for the OR. Rated PG.

  • Deadlock (2021):

    Bruce Willis is long past his “best before date” here when a gang of rogue soldiers try to take over a powerplant and a number of hostages for ransom. Mack (Patrick Muldoon) is an ex-military man who works in the plant, and he plays the Bruce Willis role, the guy with the weapons and combat training who goes to work in an effort to defeat the bad guys and release the hostages. Willis is the bad guy here, meaning he gets to sit around, throw out a few lines of dialogue, and leave all the action to the younger people on the set. The writing is poor, the budget is so low that it shows in almost every scene, and Willis … well, he clearly did this one for the paycheque alone, not that there’s anything wrong with that. Rated 14A.

  • My Best Friend Anne Frank (2021):

    This Netflix-distributed film is far different from earlier versions of the story of the young girl who was hidden, along with family members, in an attic of an Amsterdam home during WWII. As a Jewish family, they, and thousands like them, were sought by the Nazis to be shipped off to concentration camps, which, in fact, after two years in hiding, became young Anne's fate, dying just months before the end of the War. Previous productions were based on "The Diary of Anne Frank" and focused on her years in hiding during which time she wrote her famous diary entries. The subject matter here, based on interviews with Anne's friend Hannah Goselar, involves Anne's young life before going into hiding, focusing on her friends and relationships. The original Diary, published as a book after WWII with the blessing of Anne's father Otto Frank, had been censored by him as there were some sexual references that he found improper. All of that and more forms part of this new film. Rated 14A.


    Robin Robin (2021):

    This stop-motion animated film from the UK tells the story of a little baby robin who rolls out of her nest onto the ground, and who is saved, and then raised by a family of mice. As Robin gets older, she begins to realize that she is not a mouse, and that maybe she doesn't really belong with this family. A heart-warming story with an excellent message that both children and parents will enjoy. Gillian Anderson ("The X-Files") provides one of the major voices in this British made film. Rated G.

New on CRAVE

The Fallout (2021):

This drama is a case of art meeting life. Americans particularly know the challenges that occur in the nation's schools when violence prevails, and when lives are lost for no apparent reason. Vada Cavell (Jenna Ortega) is a high school student here who found herself in the midst of a violent, life-changing event. She and two teenage friends recognize the damage that is being done, but cannot move forward with their lives because they are afraid to leave the confines of their respective bedrooms. Trying to heal and trying to manage in a world that is, for them, changed forever, leaves them exhausted and without hope. But the adage says that where there is life there is hope, and they do have life. One-time Disney star Jenna Ortega stars. Rated 14A.



Reacher (2022):

This new series, based on Lee Child's Jack Reacher novels, has the casting right! Reacher, in the books, is ex-military, 6'5", 250 lbs, with fists the size of canned hams. Tom Cruise played him in the movies, but was nowhere near the physicality of the book-Reacher ... but here, the drifter who moves from town to town with only a folding toothbrush and whatever he's wearing as his worldly possessions, is played by Alan Ritchson, who is himself ex-military, is over six-feet tall, and who has a film history of playing such strong characters as Aquaman in the Smallville series, and Hawk in the TV series "Titans." The first season of "Reacher" is based on the first Jack Reacher book, "Killing Floor," where Reacher drifts into a small town and is soon a suspect in a murder investigation, but later becomes the one the police look to for a solution. Rated 14A.

New on DISNEY + /Star

Encanto (2021):

This animated feature about a town in Colombia where everyone has a special magical or superpower, except for one little girl, opened in theatres two weeks ago and begins streaming on Disney + today. Little Mirabel is the girl with no powers, and none in the town of Encanto can find a way to help her. When things change, and those with powers become powerless to save the day, Mirabel steps forward. Great movie for kids of all ages and for parents too. Rated PG.

New on Apple +

The Tragedy of MacBeth (2021):
This one opened in limited theatrical release two weeks ago and is now available on the Apple + outlet. Denzel Washington stars as the man who would be king at the ambitious urging of his wife, Lady MacBeth (Francis McDormand). The unusual casting is a direct result of the film's director, Joel Coen who also shares a writing credit with the Bard himself, William Shakespeare. Filmed in black-and-white, and done completely on soundstages, with no exterior scenes at all, we see the prophecy of the three witches off the top, that drive the action for MacBeth to become a murderer in his quest for power. Rated 14A.