Blu-ray Invasion – Week of July 12 & July 19
After witnessing a shocking crime, a young rock band is unexpectedly thrust into a life-or-death battle to escape the clutches of a diabolical club owner (Patrick Stewart) and his ruthless henchmen in this white-knuckle thriller.
A very simple plot synopsis for a very not-simple movie. Jeremy Saulnier has proven the he is capable of extracting every ounce of tension in a situation and even manages to include some stomach churning gore for added effect. On its surface, many of these moments might seem over the top but Saulnier has an adept ability to almost make the most extravagant shots seem so subtle at the same time. This also has a fantastic performance from Anton Yelchin who the cinematic world has lost far too soon. Of course, there is also Patrick Stewart turning in a rare appearance as a villain, but doing so with all of the levels of skill he consistently delivers at. BUY IT
The Divergent Series: Allegiant
In this exciting penultimate film in The Divergent Series, Tris (Shailene Woodley) and Four (Theo James) lead a team of rebels in a daring escape over the city wall – into a strange new world where they face a threat more dangerous than they ever imagined. Together, Tris and Four wage a furious battle for survival, fighting not only for their factions and loved ones, but for the future of an entire city in this dynamic, action-packed adventure.
What started out as a promising entry into the sci-fi sub-genre of franchises based on best selling young adult novels, The Divergent Series has fizzled out more and more with each sequel. The biggest indictment of the fact that the movies are indeed getting worse and worse is that Shailene Woodley manages to perform admirably in them. Miles Teller has clearly moved on from this franchise and Theo James is better served in some other action franchise as well. Pretty much, it’s time for everyone to move on, even though there’s still one more novel to adapt. SKIP IT
The Magicians: Season One
Based on Lev Grossman’s New York Times best seller, The Magicians centers on Quentin, a brilliant grad student chosen to attend Brakebills University for Magical Pedagogy, a secret upstate New York university specializing in magic. He and his 20-something friends soon discover that the magical fantasy world they read about as children is all too real – and poses grave danger to humanity.
At this point in recent television history, there is so much to chew on, for there to be a completely original idea is asking too much. This doesn’t have the most original outer layer, but the element of magic combined with some really great performances make this one worth seeking out. Especially coming from the Syfy network, this is one of the better things they’ve produced lately. QUEUE THIS