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WEEKLY BYT GUIDE TO DVD RELEASES / ON DEMAND / INSTANT NETFLIXING
October 1, 2013 | 1:00PM

Since we know how important at-home-entertainment is for all of us – every week we do a little “what’s getting released on DVD/on demand/Netflix this week” round up for you, with nice little excerpts of our past reviews and more. You’ll love it. Trust us. Now all you need is someone to watch these movies with:

OUT THIS WEEK & PROCEED WITH CAUTION:

  • The Frozen Ground. Here’s Jack Giroux over at Film School Rejects:
    Director Scott Walker‘s The Frozen Ground is the kind of thriller your conservative grandmother loves. It’s all around safe and plain, simple and to the point, and all very, very by-the-numbers. It’s like an episode of Law & Order expanded to two hours with an occasional polish or two. That idea may entice some older viewers, but after two hours of a “been there done that” on television, it’s not exactly attention grabbing.
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OUT THIS WEEK & WORTH YOUR TIME:

  • This Is the End. Here’s what we said in our original review:
    In sum, This Is The End is a mixed bag as comedy, but despite the seemingly self-indulgent premise it works more often than it doesn’t. Everyone’s having a ball, the willingness to self-skewer is real, and Rogen/Goldberg keep the structure moving at a brisk clip. Quietly hiding behind the jokes is a remarkably noble and humane vision.
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  • An Oversimplification of Her Beauty. Here’s Noel Murray over at The AV Club:
    Terence Nance’s playfully experimental feature An Oversimplification Of Her Beauty is both stunning and stymieing—a film so effusive that it’s hard to separate its signal from its noise. Built around an earlier Nance short called “How Would You Feel?”,Oversimplification opens with a man the narrator calls “You” (played by Nance) in a self-pitying, navel-gazing mood, because the woman he likes (Namik Minter) has canceled a date. Then the movie expands outward, considering the larger context for the protagonist’s case of the blues, taking into account his job status, sleeping habits, past romances, and other, more esoteric factors. Nance describes “You” through multiple second-person voices, adding lengthy quotes from relevant books and old love letters, along with animated interludes in different styles. He shifts from one to the other frequently and fluidly, making this the kind of film—wildly inventive, aesthetically and structurally—for which the term “visionary” was coined.
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INSTANT NETFLIX VIEWING OF THE WEEK (POTENTIAL GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN EDITION):

  • In the Loop. Here’s what we said in our original review:
    Director Armando Iannucci and his team of screenwriters essentially riff on the myriad ways a character can say “Go fuck yourself.” These bureaucrats are smart and selfish, and as they worry more about their reputation, their curses become increasingly creative. Capaldi shines as a supremely angry man, one who thinks nothing of berating anyway in his way. There are numerous digs at Washington politicos. One character says our city is run by children, and subsequent meetings prove the assertion accurate. I guess In the Loop says something about the big picture: even the most powerful political machine is prone to human error, and preserving the status quo can have disastrous consequences. Frankly, the movie works better as a tapestry of insult comedy than as a satire. Many plot lines go nowhere, and things get too confusing for any coherent statement. In the Loop will definitely make you laugh, just not necessarily for all the right reasons.
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  • Outrage. Here’s an anonymous writer over at NPR:
    In fact, power — and the corruption that adheres to those who pursue it — is the true subject of Outrage. Given the raging policy debates over gay marriage, the film is a timely and effective reality check on homophobic delusion. But in what it has to say about power and compromise, it also speaks to that more fundamental dysfunction in our politics — one that’s sure to live on, in one form or another, long after a new generation comes to power never having suffered in the shadow of the closet.
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  • House of Cards OR Scandal. Hey, if you’re furloughed, you’ve got plenty of time to play catch-up, right?
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That’s it for this week’s Netflix guide. Let us know what you’re watching in the comments!

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