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. This week we scope out some truly excellent mustaches from cinematic history.
OUT THIS WEEK & WORTH YOUR TIME:
- First Reformed. Here’s what we said in our original review:
First Reformed is the culmination of Paul Schrader’s singular career. After close to fifty years in the movie business, Schrader has written and directed his masterpiece. This is not an easy film to categorize: it is personal, political, allegorical, religious, and thrilling all at once. It features Ethan Hawke in his best performance to date. This is film is challenging – some scenes defy explanation – and yet the screenplay is concise and literate. Parts of it are even funny. After you leave the theater, you may be astonished, confused, or angry. No matter what, you will want to talk about what you just watched, but you’ll probably need to sit in contemplative silence beforehand.
- Deadpool 2. Here’s what we said in our original review:
Deadpool is back! Whether you love him or hate him, Ryan Reynolds is probably going to be playing Deadpool for the rest of eternity, and you’ll never again be able to pretend that you don’t know the difference between him and Ryan Gosling. Deadpool made me love Ryan Reynolds (in small doses). Honestly, I don’t want to watch anything he’s in pre-Deadpool, as in the proper movie released in 2016, not the original appearance he made in the horrible X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Speaking of Wolverine, if you haven’t seen Logan, I highly recommend watching that and the X-Men film franchise before walking into Deadpool 2. It is unnecessary to run out to see Avengers: Infinity War in preparation for Deadpool 2 like I did. Use that money to buy Black Panther in 4K.
INSTANT VIEWING OF THE WEEK (historical mustache edition):
- Hostiles (now on Netflix). Here’s what we said in our original review:
One great aspect of the film is the inclusion of Native actors in these roles, speaking their language to other characters with no need for a translator. The soldiers show respect to the Chief who would otherwise be an enemy. The last few years have been productive in terms of increased visibility for issues raised by Native Americans, and this film prioritizes their humanity (and that of the sole black character) as equal to that of the white characters. Even though some of the film gets muddled in some of these slower moments, they are essential, and will continue to impact and advance the genre.
- Slow West (now on Netflix). Here’s what we said in our original review:
The real rewards in Slow West happen in its final half hour, when all the heroes and villains approach Rose’s home. Maclean lays out the action with simple editing, defining the house and its surrounding land so we know the precise location of each encroaching threat. The shoot-out has the fatalist, macabre logic of the shoot-out at the climax of LA Confidential, another modern genre film, except Slow West has the added advantage of striking imagery that could belong in an issue of National Geographic. The exteriors are made all the more poignant with bizarre, mean-spirited visual gags that veer into dark comic territory. While it does not earn its ending, exactly, Maclean has the wisdom to realize that he can have sympathy for his characters, even if he lets them befall one calamity after another.
- There Will Be Blood (now on Amazon Prime). Here’s Nathan Rabin over at The AV Club:
Day Lewis goes through much of the film as a man tethered to the world solely through the bonds of family, as represented by his son and a mysterious long-lost brother whose surprise appearance raises more questions than it answers. As these ties rupture, he begins to lose touch with his faltering humanity. The man becomes a monster, a force as volcanic and unpredictable as a raging oil gusher. Blood is a fascinating anomaly—a rip-roaring two-fisted epic concerned almost exclusively with the tormented psyche and spiritual death of a single man. Driven by Jonny Greenwood’s pummeling, intense score, it’s a vision of the monstrousness of capitalism divorced from morality, a favorite Sinclair theme. As Blood‘s focus grows tighter and Day Lewis’ theatrical villainy grows more unhinged, the film becomes a darkly funny vision of hell in human form. As long as money retains the power to poison men’s souls, Anderson’s uncompromising masterpiece will continue to resonate as a harrowing cautionary warning to a country with oil pumping through its veins, clouding its judgment and coarsening its soul.
That’s it! Get streaming, kids.