Sunday, September 30, 2007
Did anyone check out the Bernal Heights Outdoor Cinema this week and weekend? Wow, it was terrific. I am hoping this institution sticks around forever, because I was exposed to some terrific work. A few brief reviews:
LOOM by Scott Kravitz was an amazing animated tale of an old woman who weaves with life-force that she collects. The animation is lush, the sound design gorgeous and the story, though brief, has stuck with me.
OUTSIDER by Betsy Bayha was a stupendous documentary about the life of fiber-sculptor, Judith Scott, who spent 35 years institutionalized and was considered to have no purpose in society. Once Judith was released from the institution into the care of her twin sister, Joyce, and moved to the Bay Area, she began making amazing art with string and other materials, and her joyful personality emerged. Eventually, her art became internationally famous and is included in some very prestigious collections around the world. Judith’s life teaches us hope and understanding, and gives anyone without much experience with Down’s Syndrome, or any other major disabilities a new perspective of life.
Lastly, I’d like to mention BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS, made by Aaron Goldstein and Maxx Gavrich. BOC follows the psychotic and homicidal changes that can occur on humans faced with unexpected breakfast goldmines. The moral of this tale? Don’t call your friend, just eat the booty.
There were so many other great films whose imagery lingers with me. A great big thanks again to Leslie Lombre and Anne Batmale for this festival. I already can’t wait for next year.
Also, I want to thank everyone who made the Pride & Joy festival a great success. What a fun celebration we had. Great tacos, great ice cream (thanks Good Life!), great art table, great music. A great big thanks to Darcy Lee for spearheading the organization of this party. Dave’s daughters Kelly and Julie were also on hand to join in the fun. I hope we do it again!
OK, then, on to the movies.
See you at the shop,
FANTASTIC 4: RISE OF THE SILVER SURFER.
Jessica Alba/Chris Evans.
Directed by Tim Story.
* The Fan-4 is back! However, just when things are peachy, the world is chill, and love is flourishing, the Silver Surfer shows up to shake things up plenty. And if that isn’t a bummer enough, Dr. Doom decides retirement isn’t for him, and joins the deconstruction party. Then there’s Jessica Alba’s outfit.
Gabriel Byrne/Laura Linney.
Directed by Ray Lawrence.
* Did you see SHORT CUTS? That was a collection of vignettes based on short stories by Raymond Carver. One of those stories (which featured a great Huey Lewis moment) was about a group of fishermen who discover a dead body on their trip, but continue fishing anyway. This is a feature film based on that story and set in the Australian village of Jindabyne. In this movie, much more than the fishing is explored, as the marriage of one of the fisherdudes is severely challenged by the discovery and the subsequent decision making.
JUNGLE BOOK: 40th ANNIVERSARY EDITION.
Phil Harris/Sebastian Cabot/Louis Prima.
Directed by Wolfgang Rietherman.
* Mowgli trips out with the hipster jazzy animals while avoiding getting chomped on or eaten by some other animals.
Adrain Pasdar/Cecilia Peck.
Directed by Jack Fisher.
* First time on DVD, this 1990 film explores the pain of the Israeli/Arab conflict from the perspective of two young people who’s love is driven into the ground by the surrounding horror.
THE BRONX IS BURNING.
Oliver Platt/Kevin Conway/John Turturro.
Based on a book by Jonathan Mahler.
* An episodic look at the Yankees drive for the 1977 World Series. Heavy with the crazy personalities of the team (Reggie Jackson, Billy Martin, The Boss, Mickey Rivers, Thurman Munson), will the team win or implode?
THE CLOSER: COMPLETE FIRST SEASON.
Created by James Duff.
* Deputy Police Chief Brenda Johnson (Sedgwick) is a tough cop in the Priority Homicide division of the LAPD.
ENTOURAGE: SEASON THREE PART 2.
Kevin Connolly/Kevin Dillon/Adrian Grenier.
Created by Doug Ellin.
* Part two in the third season about a group of friends struggling to make it in the painful back-stabbing world of Hollywood. One of them is making it, and the others are riding his coattails. By the way, go to Youtube and search “King Solomon Camouflage” now that is a funny video.
METALOCALYPSE: SEASON ONE.
Dylan Walsh/Julian McMahon.
* This hilarious show concerns that struggles of the world most famous metal band, Dethklok, as they attempt to navigate the world while fighting of the glitterati, as well as a shadowy government organization that is out to destroy them.
THE SARAH SILVERMAN PROGRAM: SEASON ONE.
* Silverman is a polarizing comic; some love her, some hate her. She makes very irreverent jokes. She pushes buttons, she talks religion, sex, politics...
SOUTH PARK: 10th SEASON.
Created by Matt Stone and Trey Parker.
* Have you heard of this show? I think it is supposed to be very funny. Nothing is off limits for these guys. Can you believe it has been 10 years this show has been running?
Directed by Andrea Stewart.
* This is the story of the Jamaican dogsled team and their triumphant (though not necessarily victorious) entry into the UK championships in Scotland in 2006 .
* More wonderful early footage of the Beatles, documenting some of the early years leading up to their decision to stop touring. Originally aired on BBC.
BRAM STOKER’S DRACULA: COLLECTOR’S EDITION.
Gary Oldman/Winona Ryder/Keanu Reeves/Tom Waits/Anthony Hopkins.
Directed by Jay Robinson.
* Keanu could not destroy this awesome vampire tale with wonderful cameos by Tom Waits among others.
CONAN THE BARBARIAN.
First DVD copy.
Directed by Slava Tsukerman.
* Crazy 1982 alien abduction film involving heroin addicted aliens who give up the H for the wonderful drugs the brain emits during orgasm. Hmmm, how will they extract them?
ON THE SILVER GLOBE.
Another copy of that super kooky sounding Polish sci-fi flick that we just got in a couple months ago.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
So begins a major push to jack up our DVD collection. This week you will find a bunch of classics (new and old) that we have previously only had on VHS. We are working hard to identify these movies and buy them without delay, so please note the ones you wish we had and let us know.
The most exciting new release this week comes from Judd Apatow, the guy who brought you THE 40-YEAR OLD VIRGIN (see JJ, no big deal, you still have 4 years on that guy). In KNOCKED UP, we see a youngster (early 20’s, baked) capitalize on a moment of wonderful luck and grow from it. What a concept, huh? As a man who got lucky once himself about 15 years ago (and capitalized on it), I found this move beautiful and moving, and hysterically funny. I don’t know what it is about young stoners saying what they really think, but it is truly wonderful. I haven’t seen SUPERBAD yet, another raunchy comedy from the same actors/producers/writers, but I am already psyched about it.
We also have a wide array of other great look films, ranging from some foreign flicks (L’ICEBERG, TEN CANOES, THE GREEN CHAIR, WHO WAS KAFKA? TEKKONKINKREET, DREAMING LHASA) to some American flicks of many varieties with one word titles (NEXT, BUG, CHALK EVENING). There’s also some highly requested docs (51 BIRCH STREET, MARTHA GRAHAM DANCE ON FILM) some baseball shite (ULTIMATE BASEBALL COLLECTION, SPORTS CENTURY’S GREATEST ATHLESE: BARRY BONDS) and some great UK television (MIDSOMER MURDERS SET 9, CRACKER). We also have a couple new kids’ titles and a bunch of new acquisitions to our library.
Hope to see you all in the shop this week, and I also hope to see you at the PRIDE AND JOY party this Sunday at the rec center behind the library, and at the BERNAL HEIGHTS OUTDOOR CINEMA festival Friday night, Saturday afternoon and evening.
p.s. Special thanks to Shila and Amy who wrote a couple of the reviews this week.
............//RELEASE OF THE WEEK//............
Katherine Heigl/Seth Rogen.
Directed by Judd Apatow.
* The Freaks have done it again! If you're not laughing within the first five minutes of this film then maybe comedy is just not for you. A slacker/stoner meets a beautiful woman at a night club and has a highly unlikely encounter. It becomes clear that they had too much fun when the beautiful woman discovers that she is with child. The rest of the film is full of laughs as this odd couple tries to make a go of it with the help of a pack of stoners. P.S. Beware of the pink eye...
AS YOU LIKE IT.
Kevin Kline/Janet McTeer/Alfred Molina/Bryce Dallas Howard.
Directed by Kenneth Branagh.
* Branagh doing what Branagh does best: Shakespeare, yo. He always seems to put his mark most brilliantly on Bill’s fine plays. In this one, misdirected love, cross-dressing, and elaborate scheming lead to a fine mess.
Ashley Judd/Michael Shannon/Harry Connick, Jr.
Directed by William Friedkin.
* What happens when you combine Ashley Judd, Michael Shannon and bugs that may or may not exist? Judd stars as trailer trash without the trailer who meets Shannon, a strange drifter who shares his particular brand of psychosis with her. This psychological thriller will have you wondering which characters are the crazy ones when the "bugs" begin to attack. Don’t let the bed bugs bite
Kaytea Brock/Troy Schremmer.
Directed by Mike Akel.
* A mockumentary-style look at the teaching profession, with all the humor and pain that it entails.
Jampa Kalsang/Tenzin Jigme/Tenzin Chokyi Gyatso.
Directed by Ritu Sarin and Tenzing Sonam.
* Filled with emotional music and stunning landscapes, this film is a “lost soul” story about the exiled Tibetan community. Specifically it follows Karma, a Tibetan who leaves her struggling life in NY to go to make a film about political prisoners who have escaped Tibet. She hooks up with a local who is spends his time online, doing what young men do online, and together they end up embroiled in a mystery.
Claire Danes/Toni Collette/Vanessa Redgrave/Meryl Streep.
Directed by Lajos Koltai.
* An amazing cast stars in this film about a woman dying with her daughters around her as she remembers the key moments in her life and shares them with her family.
Drama/Foreign (South Korea).
Jung Suh/Ji-ho Shim.
Directed by Cheol-su Park.
* This movie is pretty wild. It is a sexual exploration story about relationships, and the way that society views love and intimacy and the roles that we are expected to act out. The plot takes us through the love affair between a studly 19 year old and a sexy (but oh-so-old) 32 year old. She is arrested and briefly jailed for bedding this minor and upon release their relationship begins in earnest. The film vacillates between realism, and surrealism, and ends with a very bizarre banquet scene.
See above: Release of the week.
Directed by Dominique Abel and Fiona Gordon.
* When a middle-aged woman barely escapes death after being locked in a walk in cooler, she develops some icy fetishes that see her leave her family in Brussels behind for cooler horizons.
Nicolas Cage/Julianne Moore/Jessical Biel.
Directed by Lee Tamahori.
* In this speedy thriller, Cris Johnson (Cage) can see the future. Mostly, he’d just like to hook up with some cute chick he sees in his life someday (a man’s gotta dream), but the FBI would rather use him to catch some nasty nuclear terrorists. Eventually, mayhem breaks loose.
Directed by Michael Arias.
* Superbly drawn, beautiful Japanimation (no, not Afghanistanimation – What was that from?). If you like the way the Miyazaki films look, you will love these incredibly detail oriented, visceral images. The synopsis, in the words of an IMDB contributor: “BLACK and WHITE, two street urchins, battle an array of old-word Yakuza and alien assassins vying to rule the decaying metropolis of Treasure Town - where the moon smiles and young boys can fly.” Cool…
Directed by Rolf de Heer and Peter Djigirr.
* Highly recommended Aboriginal tale of courage, love and dignity. This movie is chalk full of some of the lushest scenery on earth
51 BIRCH STREET.
Directed by Doug Block.
* As documentary filmmaker Block is making a film about his family, his elderly mother dies, opening the door to much more information about his parents marriage and their lives then he ever expected, and maybe even wanted to know.
MARTHA GRAHAM: DANCE ON FILM.
SIMON SCHAMAS: POWER OF ART.
Directed by Carl Hindmarch.
* This is actually a series in which Simon Schamas breaks down art like no one else. Requested by a customer, this looks like a wonderful work.
SPORTS CENTURY’S GREATEST ATHLETES: BARRY BONDS.
* If you wanna cry about steroids, then go ahead and cry. But not to me. I’m not even a Giants fan, but I recognize Barry as one of the greatest to ever play the game. He could hit, he could run, he could field, and there really wasn’t any facet of his game that wasn’t at the top of the heap. Yeah, maybe he did some things to stay on top, but if you are gonna let someone cut into an arm and have ligament replacement surgery, which will make their arm stronger then it was before (believe me, high school students are having this as an elective surgery now), then you should not stop uber competitive athletes from taking whatever they want to keep their competitive edge. Besides, to all those who say that steroids is the end-all be-all of the sports story I just have two words to say: Marvin Benard. Case closed.
ULTIMATE BASEBALL: COLLECTOR’S COLLECTION.
* I just love baseball. Anyone with me?
WHO WAS KAFKA?
Directed by Richard Dindo.
* The director tries to track down the true nature of the enigmatic writer Franz Kafka.
CRACKER: A NEW TERROR.
* The last episodes of the popular UK crime/drama series about Dr. Eddie Fitzgerald.
MIDSOMER MURDERS: SET 9.
* Season 9 of the still running UK crime/drama series about FCI Tom Barnaby (Nettles) investigating murders around the community of Midsomer. Don’t move there, there’s lots of crime!
DORA THE EXPLORER: DORA SAVES THE MERMAIDS.
TWEETY’S HIGH FLYING ADVENTURE.
THE ADVENTURES OF BUCKAROO BANZAI.
First DVD copy of the cult classic starring Peter Weller.
First DVD copy of the Scorsese classic starring Griffin Dunne, among others.
DEATH RACE 2000.
First DVD copy of this INCREDIBLE Stallone film about a race across the country where points are scored for hit and runs.
DIE HARD THREE.
Gearing up for LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD.
DON’T LOOK NOW.
First DVD copy of the Julie Christie film.
First DVD copy of the prequel of Fay Grimm. A little late maybe, but better late than never.
First DVD copy of the early Brad Pitt film where he plays a psycho killer. Key line “This ain’t no Lucky Lager!”
First DVD copy of the documentary about cigarettes.
MONK: SEASON 5.
MURDER BY DEATH.
You have GOT to see this amazing film with a star studded cast– this is our first DVD copy.
A WOMAN WITHOUT LOVE.
Directed by Luis Bunuel.
* We have had this Bunuel film from 1951 since 1991 on VHS which has rented a whopping 9 times! Now it can be ignored on DVD.
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
The week we are featuring a Danish comedy! Sounds like a joke, and maybe it is, because here is the punch line, it is by that hysterical prankster Lars von Trier! It’s true, the seriously serious filmmaker von Trier has made a comedy and for that reason alone, THE BOSS OF IT ALL, must be seen.
We have many other releases this week; scroll on down to see…
Some other events we wish to tell you about are the Pride & Joy party which is happening on Sunday, September 30th from 4pm – 7pm outside the Bernal Rec center behind the library. In honor of David Ayoob, the former and wonderful owner of Four Star Video, and the spirit with which he lived his life, this party will be an outdoor festival with fun, music, food and games for all. Tickets are $5/person and kids under 12 are free. The proceeds will benefit the Bernal Library Capital Campaign and our local Bernal schools. Tickets are available at Four Star, Heartfelt and Red Hill Books. This party is being thrown by the Bernal Heights Merchants Association, with much help from everyone and incredible effort and hard work by Darcy Lee from Heartfelt. We highly recommend coming, it will be a great community event and we hope to see many of you there!
Also, coming right up around the corner is the Bernal Outdoor Film Festival. A wonderful festival celebrating film by and about local people, this is the Fourth Annual summer series put on by two wonderful and incredibly hard working people, Anne Batmale and Leslie Lombre. Ken will be emceeing a couple of these screenings, and we are super excited to be involved with such a special organization. Please come and experience this great week of film screenings.
Don't forget - each of the four films of Fourplay is featured on a shelf by the register.
See you at the shop,
Amy and Ken
Brice Armstrong/Laura Bailey.
Directed by Joseph Sutton.
* Rayne is the offspring of a vampire and a human. A Nazi vampire no less. Not surprisingly, she makes it her life’s mission to kill her siblings, who have joined in a cult-like fashion to bring about a new era of vampire supremacy. For real, yo.
THE BOSS OF IT ALL.
Jens Albinus/Peter Gantzler.
Directed by Lars von Trier.
* IT company hires actor to play CEO in order to induce Icelandic investor to buy company. Not your typical von Trier film, but with a familiar von Trier salient perspective and character development.
Freddie Prinze Jr/Scott Caan/Mena Suvari.
Directed by Michael Corrente.
* Written by longtime "Sopranos" writer Terence Winter, this class-A cast delivers a tale of life-long friends struggling with those big issues—relationships, loyalty, responsibility. Etc. It is 1985, and the mob rules Brooklyn.
THE FLYING SCOTSMAN.
Jonny Lee Miller/Sean Brown.
Directed by Douglass Mackinnon.
* The true story of Graeme Obree, the Champion cyclist who built his bicycle from old bits of washing machines. An underdog story, the protagonist suffers from mental illness and rages against an establishment bent on keeping him out.
Carly Schroeder/Christopher Shand.
Directed by Davis Guggenheim.
* A young woman fighting for the right to play competetive soccer. Paving the road for Brandi Chastain.
Dreya Webber/Addie Yungmee.
Directed by Ned Farr.
* The story of a promising gymnast whose career was sidelined by an injury. She gets a second chance, of sorts, in life, acrobatics and love, when she joins an aerial performance group and falls in love with another performer, a woman.
Eric Bana/Drew Barrymore/Robert Duvall/Debra Messing.
Directed by Curtis Hanson.
* Lucky in Vegas, maybe. But family is another trip. A head trip. A must see because the main character is named HUCK! Just like our fabulous son.
Kate Dickie/Tony Curran.
Directed by Andrea Arnold.
* The director won the Jury Prize at Cannes, and the film won a number of other awards. Produced in collaboration with Lars von Trier's production house Zentropa. A mysterious tale of a woman who is a closed circuit tv operator at a housing project and her relationship with a man she follows on camera and in life.
ROBINSON CRUSOE ON MARS.
Paul Mantee/Vic Lundin/Adam West.
Directed by Byron Haskin.
* Stranded on Mars with only a monkey for support staff, an astronaut must find oxygen, water and food on the red planet. Maybe aliens, too. Is there life on Mars?
THE THREEPENNY OPERA.
Lotte Lenya/Rudolph Forster.
Directed by G.W. Pabst.
* Critereon release of this 1931 cinematic adaptation of the Brecht/Weil musical. Taking place in turn-of-that-century London, Mack-the-Knife marries Polly without the blessing of her father, who rules the beggars of London.
Sally Field/Ben Chaplin/Julianne Nicholson.
Directed by Steve Stockman.
* Four adult siblings gather at their dying mother’s house to say goodbye. But the end takes a little longer than anyone anticipates. Sally Field just won an Emmy! They Like Her! They Really Like Her!
Gad Elmaleh/Alice Taglioni/Daniel Auteuil.
Directed by Francis Veber.
* A hotel porter and a top model pretending to be a couple in order to cover up the marital indiscretions of a CEO, really the model’s lover. Things get confused and comical and everyone looks cute.
WE ARE MARSHALL.
Matthew McConaughey/Matthew Fox.
Directed by McG (aka Joseph McGinty Nichol).
* A plane crash kills players, coaches and fans of the Marshall University football team. Out of the devastation rises a new team, pulled together miraculously despite the decision of the University board to end the football program.
FAMILY GUY: SEASON 5.
* Season 5 of the animated comedy series.
Kerrie Hayes/Leanne Rowe/Catherine Tyldesley/Brian McCardie.
* A show about the three Moss sisters, Iris, May and Ruby. Set in post WWI, it follows the sisters and their family, bolstered by their widowed father and their familial bonds, as they struggle through their nearly poverty stricken lives. Well acted and critically acclaimed Lilies looks like a winner.
PRIME SUSPECT: THE FINAL ACT SEASON 7.
Directed by Philip Martin.
* The final stages of the career of Detective Superintendent Jane Tennison (Mirren) are marked by a savage murder investigation shadowed by the alcoholism that Tennison is hiding. If you are a Helen Mirren fan, you’ve probably already watched the first 6 seasons of this show.
THE UPRIGHT CITIZAN’S BRIGADE: SEASON 2.
Amy Poehler/Matt Besser/Ian Roberts.
* I think the tagline says it all “Seriously f**ked up sketch comedy!” Yeah.
BARBIE AS THE ISLAND PRINCESS.
* She’s an emotional island.
First DVD Copy.
Jack MacGowan/Jane Birkin.
First DVD Copy.
* Trippy, day dreamy and delusional UK flick about a guy becoming obsessed with the cute lady next door. George Harrison composed the tuneage.
Replacement DVD Copy.
* Oh yeah... Live Free or Die Hard is coming soon, and we are getting prepared.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
I am reeling in the aftermath of a major IT drama. It involved numerous installations and uninstallations and rewriting of registry keys. Or whatever it is one does to registry keys. I was unable to work for nearly a full day (I’m a lawyer by day—some days at least) because I do everything on that damn machine. I am fondly remembering the days when I wrote papers by hand in college . . . DOH! Speaking of college, Tulin is off to college this week! Wednesday, September 12 is her last day. She’ll be working from 11am to 6pm so come in and say goodbye to that groovy girl. We’ll miss you, Tulin. And speaking of Wednesday, September 12—it is also Ken’s 38th birthday (I know his age is hard to guess, he’s prematurely green.) We Shelves will all be in the store at around 5pm to give Tulin a little sweet treat to send her on her way, so that’s also a great time to stop by and wish Ken a happy birthday.
Each of the four films of Fourplay is featured on a shelf by the register.
See you at the shop,
AWAY FROM HER.
Julie Christie/Olympia Dukakis/Gordon Pinsent
Directed by Sarah Polley.
*Based upon a short story by Canadian writer Alice Munro. Co-written by the director and Alice Munro. About a couple, Fiona and Grant, transforming in the face of the wife’s Alzheimer’s disease. After Fiona is institutionalized she directs her affections toward another man, also a patient, and seemingly forgets her husband of decades. Say some, ultimately this is a film about going on with life.
BURY MY HEART AT WOUNDED KNEE.
Aidan Quinn/Eric Schweig/Adam Beach/Anna Paquin/August Schellenberg.
Directed by Yves Simoneau.
*A story, told by interwoven narratives beginning after the Sioux victory at Little Big Horn, of the preservation of hope during the displacement of Native Americans in the West. And about hope vanishing after the assassination of Sitting Bull and the massacre of hundreds of Native Americans by the 7th Cavalry at Wounded Knee Creek on Dec. 29, 1890. Based on the book by Dee Brown. Trivia bonus point: one of the above-named actors is the voice of the yellow M&M in the commercial.
CAUTIVA / IN JULY.
Barbara Lombardo/Susana Campos [Cautiva.
Directed by Gaston Biraben.
Moritz Bleibtreu/Christiane Paul
Directed by Faith Akin
* Double released as a two-disc set by studio Koch Lorber Films. Cautiva is the story of an Argentinian girl’s discovery that she is really the daughter of activists who disappeared in the ‘70s. Questioning her sheltered catholic schoolgirl life, Cristina embarks on a journey to find her true identity and the truth about her country's "dirty war." In July is about a teacher on a seemingly mystic journey from Hamburg to Istanbul in pursuit of true love.
Kim Bassinger/Danny DeVito/Forrest Whitaker/Ray Liotta/Kelsey Grammer.
Directed by Marc Rydell.
*Gambling addiction destroys lives. Even when under treatment by Frazier.
A FEW DAYS IN SEPTEMBER.
Juliette Binoche/John Turturro/Nick Nolte.
Directed by Santiago Amigorena.
* September 1st, 2001 an American C.I.A. agent holding top secret information on the immediate future of the world, disappears. A French agent who used to work with him, and his adoptive son, help him and unite him with the daughter he is searching for. All while being chased through Europe by a psycho murderer. They find the agent on September 11th, 2001 . . . good suspense.
Isabelle Huppert/Jérémie Renier/Yannick Renier.
Directed by Joachim Lafosse.
*About the relationship between a divorced mother and her two sons, and how the family fractures when the mother wants to move in with her lover.
Alan Rickman/Sigourney Weaver.
Directed by Marc Evans.
* The relationship between a man traumatized by a fatal car accident and the autistic mother of the accident victim.
BURNING MAN: BEYOND BLACK ROCK.
Directed by Damon Brown.
*The who, the how, the why, the what of everyone’s favorite art fest in the desert. There’s more to Burning Man than meets the eye, so put on your safety goggles.
GREY’S ANATOMY: SEASON 3.
Patrick Dempsey/Ellen Pompeo/Katherine Heigl/Sandra Oh/Justin Chambers.
* Operations. Relations. Complications. Yo.
THE OFFICE (USA): SEASON 3.
*This show put the “mock” in this “mockumentary.”
BOB THE BUILDER:SCRAMBLER TO THE RESCUE.
*How will it end? When will it end?
CHARLIE AND LOLA: VOLUME 4.
*Based upon the gorgeous and hilarious books by Lauren Childs. Those who read the books first think this can’t possibly be as good as the books. Those who see the animated shorts first wonder how anything could be better.
CHARLIE AND LOLA: VOLUME 5.
*I will never, ever, ever eat a tomato. She’s small, and very funny.
Adam Cagley/Cindy Drummond.
Directed by Bruce Hurwit.
*Boy gets a brain transplant after a freak amusement park accident that allows him to see cartoon characters in real life. Some of you might recognize Adam Cagley from his role in “Totally Baked: A Pot-U-Mentary.”
Dennis Christopher/Dennis Quaid/Daniel Stern/Jackie Earle Hailey.
Directed by Peter Yates
* First DVD copy for Four Star of this classic story of good versus evil.
DIE HARD 2.
Bunta Sugawara/Hiroki Matsukata/Kunie Tanaka.
Directed by Kinji Fukasaku.
*First of five in this box set of early 70’s films about Japanese organized crime after WWII.
YAKUZA PAPERS, Vol 2: Deadly Fight in Hiroshima..
Sonny Chiba/Sizo Fukumoto/Meiko Kaji.
Directed by Kinji Fukasaku.
*Second of five. Thrilling and beautifully shot.
YAKUZA PAPERS, Vol 3: Proxy Wars .
Bunta Sugawara/Akira Kobayashi/Tsunehiko Watase.
Directed by Kinji Fukasaku.
*Third of five.
YAKUZA PAPERS, Vol 4: Police Tactics.
Bunta Sugawara/Akira Kobayashi/Tatsuo Umemiya.
Directed by Kinji Fukasaku.
*Four down, one to go. This one is particularly bloody with lots of political intrigue.
YAKUZA PAPERS, Vol 5: The Final Episode.
Goro Ibuki/Nabuo Kaneko/Kinya Kitaoji.
Directed by Kinji Fukasaku.
* The criminal becomes the man as finally the underground corruption goes mainstream in order to survive.
Sunday, September 2, 2007
All the TV, all the time. It was TV, TV at the top of the list.... Television, the drug of the nation!
Lots of television this week, which seems appropriate considering this coming weekend is opening weekend for the football season, which means a decent amount of us will have our butts firmly planted on/in comfortable couches in front of the tube every Sunday for the next 4 months. In between games you could check out the latest seasons of DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES, DIRTY JOBS, PRISON BREAK, NIP/TUCK and 30 ROCK.
There also good comedy, for when your team sucks (like mine) and you need a laugh: CLOSING ESCROW, DELTA FARCE, I’M REED FISH.
If it’s action you need, you can turn to BOBBY Z, or if it’s drama you are after, try GEORGIA RULE or Ken Loach’s THE WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY.
There is also a couple great Jarmusch films being released by Criterion this week (STRANGER THAN PARADISE, NIGHT ON EARTH) as well as some kiddie flicks for the junior set.
In store news, we will be posting FOURPLAY every other week starting this week, to give everyone a chance to check into the highlighted movies. Also, stop in and wish Tulin good luck, as she is off to college in two weeks. She was a terrific person to be around in the store this summer, and we’ll miss her and wish her well.
See you at the shop,
p.s. Look for recommendations on the film boxes from all of us behind the counter. This is the first step in what we hope will eventually be a full staff and customer peer review system. Let us know what you think.
Paul Walker/Laurence Fishburne/Olivia Wilde.
Directed by John Herzfeld.
* A former Marine (Walker) who has somehow messed up bad enough to go to jail, is offered a way out: to impersonate Bobby Z, a recently deceased drug lord in a hostage negotiation. Nothing goes as planned, and soon the impersonator finds himself on the run with Bobby’s six year old son!
April Barnett/Andrew Friedman (not the one behind the counter at Four Star!).
Directed by Armen Kaprelian and Kent G. Llewellyn.
* A comedy about real estate? Do we San Franciscans have a sense of humor about this sensitive subject matter? I’m not sure…but this film is about a 3 way bidding war over some house that’s probably not worth it and the terrible stress it causes the families involved and the true mettle that emerges from the real estate agents – HILARIOUS!
Michael Edward Rose/Larry the Cable Guy.
Directed by C.B. Harding.
* Three moronic reservists who think they are being hijacked to Iraq by a sadistic sergeant are actually dropped into Mexico. Since they can’t tell the difference between Mexico and Iraq (dang, they speak funny here in the Middle East) they put their skills to use and “liberate” a small town from the bad bad guys.
Lindsay Lohan/Jane Fonda/Felicity Huffman.
Directed by Garry Marshall.
* You may remember Garry Marshall as the genius behind HAPPY DAYS, LAVERNE AND SHIRLEY, MORK AND MINDY and JOANIE LOVES CHACHI (okay, fine, I’m stretching it). Here he is faced with making a fictional piece about an out of control young adult (Lohan) who has broken one too many rule and is being sent away as a result. No, not to rehab, that’s Lohan’s real-life story – in Georgia Rule she is being sent to her steely tough grandma’s farm out in Idaho where family secrets are uncovered.
I’M REED FISH.
Jay Baruchel/Alexis Bledel.
Directed by Zackary Adler.
* Reed’s life is turned upside down on the eve of his wedding when an old high school crush returns to town.
Emily Blunt/Ashton Holmes.
Directed by Gregory Jacobs.
* Its cold, really really cold. And scary! Really really scary.
THE WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY.
Cillian Murphy/Liam Cunningham/Padraic Delaney.
Directed by Ken Loach.
* Brutal civil war story about Ireland in the 1920’s. And two brothers who find themselves on opposite sides of the conflict.
DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES: 3rd SEASON.
Teri Hatcher/Felicity Huffman/Eva Longoria/Probably some men.
* Season three in the sexy award-winning series about suburban women looking for love.
DIRTY JOBS: COLLECTION 1.
* This show is pretty interesting as it digs into to some truly yucky jobs that people have to do. A true antidote for your current employment malaise.
NIP/TUCK: COMPLETE 4th SEASON.
Dylan Walsh/Julian McMahon.
* Season 4 finds the two plastic surgeons engaged in the nipping and tucking of women’s bodies again.
PRISON BREAK: SEASON 2.
Wentworth Miller/Dominic Purcell.
* In Season 2, the inmates have escaped and are on the run.
30 ROCK: SEASON 1.
Tina Fey/Alec Baldwin.
* A look, through the eyes of the head writer, at life backstage at a sketch comedy show.
BUY THE TICKET TAKE THE RIDE: HUNTER S. THOMPSON ON FILM.
Gary Busey/William F. Buckley/John Cusack/Johnny Depp/Benicio Del Toro/Bill Murray/Sean Penn.
Directed by Tom Thurman.
* A doc about the life and death of Thompson, with special emphasis on his dealings with Hollywood. If you are that special breed of Hunter S. Thompson fan, this is a must-see. If not, this is still are well made interesting portrayal of an American icon.
CHILL OUT, SCOOBY-DOO!
PRINCESS ENCHANTED TALES: FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS.
STRANGER THAN PARADISE.
Directed by Jim Jarmusch.
Criterion Collection Release.
NIGHT ON EARTH.
Directed by Jim Jarmusch.
Criterion Collection Release.
WET HOT AMERICAN SUMMER.