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Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts (Blu-ray)
Gotham City is in peril! I know, I know: what else is new? This is something different, though. Batman just squared off against a cybernetic wolf that blasted its way into STAR Labs. The Flash has been chasing after Killer Croc after he pilfered a ton of copper, and...wait, what is he doing teaming up with Cheetah, and why are they knocking over a jewelry store? Silverback -- think Gorilla Grodd, only...well, that would be telling -- is darting out of a bank with a dufflebag full of silver, and Green Arrow is the only thing standing between him and a clean getaway. Why are these animal-themed no-good-niks -- this Animilitia -- committing all these heists across Gotham? What does it mean that their crimes form a perfect circle around the Aviary, the sprawling office tower that's just about to open its doors? Maybe Bruce Wayne needs to have a chat with the billionaire who sank seven years and his family fortune into building the Aviary. I think the invitation said that the real estate mogul's name is Oswald Cobblepot. Does that ring any bells?

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DC Comics has spent the past few years in a creative tailspin that they've only just started to pull out of. It's as if a self-serious thirteen year old had been steering the ship rather than a bunch of middle-aged men, and this hypothetical teen's perception of what's adult has led the New 52 to be a grim, joyless, unrelentingly brutal miasma of misery and dismemberment. That attitude has tainted both their live-action films and direct-to-video animated movies alike. Batman Unlimited has an altogether different mission in mind. This new animated line -- with a slew of Mattel action figures to match -- is a return to the days when DC wasn't embarrassed about having fun. Its tone, animation style, and...[read the entire Blu-ray review of Batman Unlimited: Animal Instincts]


Vampyros Lesbos (Blu-ray)
"So, the thing was I like vampires, [and] I like lesbian relations between two women...I think it's much more beautiful, the intercourse between two lesbian girls. So, we started like that. It was not important."
- writer/director Jess Franco on Vampyros Lesbos

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Toss out all those preconceptions you may have about dark, foreboding, gothic castles. Count Dracula had to his name wealth beyond comprehension, and it turns out that the whole thing about vampires and the sun was nothing more than an exploded myth. So, why settle for a decaying, desolate chunk of rock in the Carpathians? Dracula is -- or, well, was -- living the high life in a space age bachelor pad on the sunny island of Kadidados. Actually, "bachelor pad" isn't quite the term I'm looking for either. The legendary Count has recently passed away, and the entirety of his estate has been willed to the Countess Carody (Soledad Miranda). Linda Westinghouse (Ewa Strömberg), a representative from the late Count's law firm, has been dispatched to Kadidados to sort out the particulars. Carody -- quite literally the woman of Westinghouse's dreams -- is nothing if not a gracious hostess. They swim and sunbathe in the nude together. They share a bottle of wine. Tender kisses are exchanged. Carody...feasts on Westinghouse's blood, and this story's all of a sudden gotten away from me. The lawyer is left stranded on the beach, with all memories of who she is or what she's endured stripped away. Her mind is otherwise a blank slate, and yet Westinghouse remains consumed by visions of her sapphic lover. Even after being taken away from the asylum where she's been held and having returned home with her boyfriend, some supernatural compulsion keeps drawing Westinghouse back to the Countess. Carody has much to teach...[read the entire Blu-ray review of Vampyros Lesbos]


It! The Terror from Beyond Space (Blu-ray)
Mankind's greatest achievement was cut brutally short. Teleradio communication ceased immediately upon the Challenge 141's arrival on Mars, and after several months of dead silence, the Division of Interplanetary Exploration had to assume the worst. Tasked with a mission more closely resembling an autopsy than search and rescue, a second expedition was dispatched to the Red Planet in the hopes of learning more about the maiden voyage's grisly fate. To their astonishment, Colonel Edward Carruthers (Marshall Thompson) was discovered alive on the Martian surface among his ship's wreckage, though he was its sole survivor. Nevermind Carruthers' fantastic tales of the unstoppable creature that slaughtered his crew; hopelessly stranded on Mars, the colonel clearly murdered his compatriots in cold blood. The ship only carried enough provisions to last its crew a year, but one man alone could survive on them for a decade. The crew of the second expedition takes Carruthers with them on the return voyage home to face a military tribunal. They are indeed returning to Earth with the murderer onboard, but...well:

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In stark contrast to 1979's Alien, which draws deeply from the premise of this film more than twenty years its senior, the crew of the Challenge 142 is heavily armed. They remain every bit as outmatched, however. The creature shrugs off small arms fire. Grenades barely slow it down. Hundreds of thousands of volts of electricity, gas lethal enough to fell a T-rex, and even an unshielded nuclear reactor rate at most as a mild annoyance. One by one, this otherworldly monstrosity drains the life from the ship's crew, and every increasingly desperate attempt at fending off the beast proves futile. If by some miracle the Challenge 142 were to...[read the entire Blu-ray review of It! The Terror from Beyond Space]


More reviews...

Stuff I've Watched Recently

  • 5/14: The Cutting Edge (Blu-ray)
  • 5/12: Batman vs. Robin (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD UltraViolet Combo Pack) (Blu-ray)
  • 5/11: Batman: Assault on Arkham (Blu-ray)
  • 5/10: That Thing You Do! (Hdtv)
  • 5/10: Batman Unlimited:Animal Instincts (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD UltraViolet Combo Pack) (Blu-ray)
  • 5/9: Vampyros Lesbos (Blu-ray + DVD Combo) (Blu-ray)
  • 5/8: It! The Terror from Beyond Space (Blu-ray)
  • 5/5: Birdman (Blu-ray)
  • 5/4: Man, Pride and Vengeance (Blu-ray; Commentary)
  • 5/3: Man, Pride and Vengeance (Blu-ray)
  • 5/1: The Drownsman (Blu-ray)
  • 4/30: Les Vacances de M. Hulot (Blu-ray)
  • 4/30: Kill the Messenger (Blu-ray + DVD + DIGITAL HD with UltraViolet) (Blu-ray)
  • 4/29: Wolfcop (Blu-ray)
  • 4/26: Zardoz (Blu-ray)
More of my boring video log...
 
Movies I've Acquired Recently

  • 5/13: Supernatural: Season 9 (Blu-ray)
  • 5/10: Marvel's Avengers: Age of Ultron 2-Disc BD Combo Pack (3D BD+BD+Digital HD) (Blu-ray)
  • 5/6: Good the Bad & The Ugly (Blu-ray)
  • 5/5: Batman: Assault on Arkham (Blu-ray)
  • 5/5: Batman vs. Robin (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD UltraViolet Combo Pack) (Blu-ray)
  • 5/5: Penny Dreadful: Season 1 (Blu-ray)
  • 5/5: Vampyros Lesbos (Blu-ray + DVD Combo) (Blu-ray)
  • 5/5: Batman Unlimited:Animal Instincts (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital HD UltraViolet Combo Pack) (Blu-ray)
  • 5/2: It! The Terror from Beyond Space (Blu-ray)
  • 4/28: Man, Pride and Vengeance (Blu-ray)
  • 4/27: The Drownsman (Blu-ray)
  • 4/26: Orphan Black: Season 2 (Blu-ray) (Blu-ray)
  • 4/24: Kill the Messenger (Blu-ray + DVD + DIGITAL HD with UltraViolet) (Blu-ray)
  • 4/14: The Babadook (Special Edition) (Blu-ray)
  • 4/12: Lupin the 3rd: The Castle of Cagliostro (Blu-ray)
More stuff I've bought or been sent to review...


 
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