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Archive for April, 2011

DVD Report – April 26th

Not a single new big-name studio film is out on DVD this week… which is a first, since we began reporting on new DVDs! But that doesn’t mean there’s nothing new of quality hitting stores. India’s education drama 3 Idiots was a big favorite of Criticker users, and is definitely worth a look.

Criticker Pick!3 IdiotsAverage Tier 7.06
While attending one of India’s premier colleges, miserable engineering students and best friends Ryan (Aamir Khan), Hari (Madhavan) and Alok (Sharman Joshi) struggle to beat their school’s draconian system, which, in their eyes, unfairly values grades over creativity. 3 Idiots @ Amazon

JoleneAverage Tier 5.00
A teenage orphan spends ten years traveling cross-country experiencing life, love and heartbreak. Based on E.L. Doctorow’s story, “Jolene: A Life.” Jolene @ Amazon

Sniper: ReloadedAverage Tier 1.00
While working with the UN Forces in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Marine Sgt. Brandon Beckett (Chad Michael Collins), son of renowned sniper Thomas Beckett, receives orders to rescue a European farmer trapped in the middle of hostile rebel territory. When he and his men arrive at the farm, a mysterious sniper ambushes them, wounding Beckett and killing everyone else. With the help of his father’s former protege, sniper instructor Richard Miller (Billy Zane), Beckett must learn to think l (dvdactive.com) Sniper: Reloaded @ Amazon

Revenge of the BridesmaidsAverage Tier 1.00
Two women plot revenge against the woman marrying their friend’s ex-boyfriend. (imdb) Revenge of the Bridesmaids @ Amazon

Blood Out
When big city detectives refuse to further investigate his kid brother’s gang related murder, small town Sheriff Michael Spencer drops the badge and goes undercover to find his brother’s killer and avenge his death. (imdb) Blood Out @ Amazon

DVD Report – April 19th

With the exception of Jack Black’s Gulliver’s Travels, this is an incredible week for new films on DVD. The most highly-anticipated is surely the winner of the Academy Awards’ Best Picture, The King’s Speech — a film which will lose none of its quality on the smaller screen. But some great lesser-known films are newly available as well, including Sofia Coppola’s Somewhere, and critics’ darling, Rabbit Hole, starring Nicole Kidman and directed by Hedwig’s John Cameron Mitchell.

Criticker Pick!King’s Speech, TheAverage Tier 7.65
Tom Hooper directs this drama based on the true story of Britain’s King George VI (Colin Firth), a man who for years struggled with a nervous disposition and an embarrassing stutter — until he seeks help from unorthodox Australian speech therapist Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush). Logue’s pioneering treatment and unlikely friendship give the royal leader a sense of confidence that serves him and his country well during the dark days of World War II. King’s Speech, The @ Amazon

SomewhereAverage Tier 5.73
A hard-living Hollywood actor re-examines his life after his 11-year-old daughter surprises him with a visit. Somewhere @ Amazon

Rabbit HoleAverage Tier 6.23
Life for a happy couple is turned upside down after their young son dies in an accident. Rabbit Hole @ Amazon

Ip Man 2: Legend of the GrandmasterAverage Tier 6.11
Centering on Ip Man’s migration to Hong Kong in 1949 as he attempts to propagate his discipline of Wing Chun martial arts. Ip Man 2: Legend of the Grandmaster @ Amazon

Gulliver’s TravelsAverage Tier 2.31
Travel writer Lemuel Gulliver takes an assignment in Bermuda, but ends up on the island of Liliput, where he towers over its tiny citizens. Gulliver’s Travels @ Amazon

DVD Report – April 12th

Who dares challenge the mighty Harry Potter? Only Gwyneth Paltrow! Studios must have figured the audiences for the first part of the final Harry Potter installment, and those anxiously waiting to see Paltrow belt out country tunes, were mutually exclusive. Regardless, the best pick of the week is the only other release: Claire Denis’ White Material, a powerful film about racial strife in modern Africa.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1Average Tier 6.29
Voldemort’s power is growing stronger. He now has control over the Ministry of Magic and Hogwarts. Harry, Ron, and Hermione decide to finish Dumbledore’s work and find the rest of the Horcruxes to defeat the Dark Lord. But little hope remains for the Trio, and the rest of the Wizarding World, so everything they do must go as planned. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 @ Amazon

Criticker Pick!White MaterialAverage Tier 7.25
Denis revisits Africa, this time exploring a place rife with civil and racial conflict. A white French family outlawed in its home and attempting to save its coffee plantation connects with a black hero also embroiled in the tumult. All try to survive as their world rapidly crumbles around them. White Material @ Amazon

Country StrongAverage Tier 4.93
While out on tour to revive her stalled career, once-popular country singer Kelly (Gwyneth Paltrow) falls for emerging newcomer Beau (Garrett Hedlund) and tries desperately to hide their burgeoning romance from her ever-present husband and manager, Ed (Tim McGraw). Written and directed by Shana Feste, this musical drama co-stars Leighton Meester as a former beauty queen trying to break out as a songstress. Country Strong @ Amazon

DVD Report – April 5th

Not much worth getting excited for this week on DVD, except perhaps the long-delayed and moderately successful I Love You Phillip Morris, featuring Jim Carrey and Ewan McGregor as love-struck cons. With reviews all over the place, from dark red to dark green, it’s the kind of movie that you probably know beforehand whether you’ll like it. The new Tron was a disappointment, but quite a few people enjoyed it, as well.

Tron: LegacyAverage Tier 4.89
Sam Flynn, the tech-savvy 27-year-old son of Kevin Flynn, looks into his father’s disappearance and finds himself pulled into the same world of fierce programs and gladiatorial games where his father has been living for 25 years. Along with Kevin’s loyal confidant, father and son embark on a life-and-death journey across a visually-stunning cyber universe that has become far more advanced and exceedingly dangerous. (ZootCatchy) Tron: Legacy @ Amazon

I Love You Phillip MorrisAverage Tier 5.31
The film is based on the real life events of a con artist, impostor, and multiple prison escapee Steven Jay Russell (Jim Carrey). While incarcerated, Russell falls in love with his cell mate, Phillip Morris (Ewan McGregor). After Morris is released from prison, Russell escapes from prison four times in order to be reunited with Morris. (wikipedia.com) I Love You Phillip Morris @ Amazon

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn TreaderAverage Tier 3.97
With their dour, bookish cousin Eustace (Will Poulter) in tow, the youngest Pevensie offspring — Lucy (Georgie Henley) and Edmund (Skandar Keynes) — take an unexpected trip back to Narnia and join noble King Caspian (Ben Barnes) for an epic high-seas adventure. Setting sail aboard the Dawn Treader, the young heroes head for the end of the world, determined to rescue seven once-powerful lords banished by Caspian’s evil uncle. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader @ Amazon

Little FockersAverage Tier 2.86
The Focker and the Byrnes families brace themselves for the arrival of a baby. (imdb) Little Fockers @ Amazon

Casino JackAverage Tier 3.97
A hot shot Washington DC lobbyist and his protege go down hard as their schemes to peddle influence lead to corruption and murder. Casino Jack @ Amazon

Order Filmmakers By Your Ratings

We’re happy to announce the release of a feature which has long been one of the most-requested. You can now view lists of directors and actors, ordered by your average film rating. And, you can filter and order the lists on the number of films you’ve ranked. Play around with the new feature here: http://www.criticker.com/?py

This feature has been a long time coming, and we hope you enjoy it! As always, if you notice any issues, please don’t hesitate to let us know via email. And special thanks go out to our sponsors, who made useful suggestions on a secretive earlier version of this functionality, and whose generous support makes all this possible.