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Archive for March, 2012

DVD Report – March 27th

With a great cast, featuring Viggo Mortensen, Kiera Knightly and Michael Fassbender, A Dangerous Method, is the pick of the week. Although, considering the star power and the fact that it’s directed by David Cronenberg, an average tier of just over 5 might be considered a disappointment. At any rate, it’s better than one of the films unbelievably nominated for Best Picture this year: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Criticker users thoroughly rejected this it as manipulative tripe, starring a whimsical child who carries a tambourine and is going to grow into the most obnoxious teenager of all time. But, you can judge for yourself… someone must have liked it.

A Dangerous MethodAverage Tier 5.19

On the eve of WWI, Zurich and Vienna are the setting for a dark tale of sexual and intellectual discovery. Drawn from true-life events, the film takes a glimpse into the turbulent relationships between fledgling psychiatrist Carl Jung (Fassbender), his mentor Sigmund Freud (Mortensen), and Sabina Spielrein (Knightley), the troubled but beautiful young woman who comes between them. Into the mix comes Otto Gross (Cassel), a debauched patient who is determined to push the boundaries. (beyondhollywood.com)
A Dangerous Method @ Amazon

A nine-year-old amateur inventor, jewelry designer, astrophysicist, tambourine player, and pacifist searches New York for the lock that matches a mysterious key left by his father when he was killed in the September 11 attacks.
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close @ Amazon

Playing around while aboard a cruise ship, the Chipmunks and Chipettes accidentally go overboard and end up marooned in a tropical paradise. They discover their new turf is not as deserted as it seems.
Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked @ Amazon

Independent film maverick. Trailblazing writer/director who takes chances with style and script. Inspirational humanist. Box-office success. Indie filmmaker from the 1970s or 1990s? No: Roger Corman! (mubi.com)
Corman’s World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel @ Amazon

DVD Report – March 12th, 2012

There are four great new films appearing on DVD this week, and one dud (a film with such a ridiculous premise that I first thought it was a joke). Let’s concentrate on the good. We were skeptical about the American remake of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (rather, annoyed by Hollywood’s penchant for remaking already-great recent foreign films), but David Finch beat expectations and delivered a thriller that might even surpass its model. Likewise, The Muppets could have been a train wreck, but was one of the Criticker community’s favorite films of the year.

John LeCarre gets another cinematic adaptation in the excellent Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, a film which Criticker users praised for its smarts. And almost everyone had nice things to say about Carnage, Roman Polanski’s bitter comedy based on the hit stage play. So, four great films to choose from. Please just stay away from Hop.

The Girl with the Dragon TattooAverage Tier 6.92

Journalist Mikael Blomkvist (Craig) is aided in his search for a woman who has been missing for forty years by Lisbeth Salander (Mara), a young computer hacker.
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo @ Amazon

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, SpyAverage Tier 6.72

In the bleak days of the Cold War, espionage veteran George Smiley is forced from semi-retirement to uncover a Soviet agent within MI6’s echelons.
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy @ Amazon

The MuppetsAverage Tier 6.90

With the help of three fans, The Muppets must reunite to save their old theater from a greedy oil tycoon.
The Muppets @ Amazon

CarnageAverage Tier 6.57

Tells the story of two sets of parents who decide to have a cordial meeting after their sons are involved in a schoolyard brawl.
Carnage @ Amazon

HopAverage Tier 2.91

The Easter Bunny is accidentally hit by a car, and it’s up to the offending driver to save Easter.
Hop @ Amazon

DVD Report – March 6th

A couple great new films on DVD this week, including the latest from Spanish madman Pedro Almódovar and the second-best film of 2011, as chosen by users of Criticker. Senna, a documentary about the Brazilian Formula 1 champion, seemed a strange choice to place so high on our year-end list, but users have been almost unanimous in praise of the film.

For his latest project, The Skin I Live In, Antonio Banderas returned to the director who’s always brought out his best work. And once again, the Almódovar/Banderas team-up results in a unique, bizarre and very watchable film. Criticker users loved it enough to land it in 2011’s top twenty.

Criticker Pick!
The Skin I Live InAverage Tier 7.20

A brilliant plastic surgeon, haunted by past tragedies, creates a type of synthetic skin that withstands any kind of damage. His guinea pig: a mysterious and volatile woman who holds the key to his obsession.
The Skin I Live In @ Amazon

ImmortalsAverage Tier 4.00

Theseus is a mortal man chosen by Zeus to lead the fight against the ruthless King Hyperion, who is on a rampage across Greece to obtain a weapon that can destroy humanity.
Immortals @ Amazon

Criticker Pick!
SennaAverage Tier 8.28

A documentary on Brazilian Formula One racing driver Ayrton Senna, who won the F1 world championship three times before his death at age 34.
Senna @ Amazon

Like CrazyAverage Tier 6.05

A British college student falls for an American student, only to be separated from him when she’s banned from the U.S. after overstaying her visa.
Like Crazy @ Amazon

FootlooseAverage Tier 3.92

City kid Ren McCormack moves to a small town where rock ‘n’ roll and dancing have been banned, and his rebellious spirit shakes up the populace.
Footloose @ Amazon