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 true stories about strong women, and not the ones you would expect.
OUT THIS WEEK & PROCEED WITH CAUTION:
- Don’t Worry He Won’t Get Far on Foot. Here’s what we said in our original review:
The casting of Phoenix only exacerbates this problem. He is not convincing as a young man, or someone disabled. Unlike You Were Never Really Here, which features a terrific physical performance, Phoenix goes through the motions of playing John. There is some sub-textual resonance since Van Sant made his career with My Own Private Idaho, starring Joaquin’s brother River, who would eventually succumb to his battles with addiction. His freewheeling sense of experimentation is absent here, and so is the formal daring. The photography of Don’t Worry is flat and haphazardly framed, with a wan yellow color that hardly resembles the lush greens of Portland.
- Hotel Artemis. Here’s what we said in our original review:
Even with Pearce’s best intentions, trying to pile character and plot to add details to this world, Hotel Artemis shines when its at its simplest. This environment is intrinsically interesting to delve into, it doesn’t need an abundance of ideas to make it work. Like its apparent inspiration John Wick, the cleaner, the better. Hotel Artemis may have more ambition than it needs to have, but at its core, it can be an enjoyable ride when its not focusing on chaotic plot machinations and its packed guest book.
OUT THIS WEEK & WORTH YOUR TIME:
- Eighth Grade. Here’s what we said in our best movies of 2018 (so far) post:
Like Leave No Trace and Blockers, Eighth Grade is also about a young girl’s relationship with her father. What makes this film unique – written and directed by comedian Bo Burnham – is its total commitment to the girl’s painful, highly subjective experience. This is not a “cringe” comedy, where you laugh through the awkwardness, but a compassionate dramatic comedy that gets at how thirteen year olds handle the feelings they barely understand. Burnham is a natural filmmaker, with some choices and music cues that downright shocking, but what’s most surprising about this film is how it is meant to be allegorical. Everyone will relate to Kayla, the film’s young hero, more than they may care to admit.
INSTANT VIEWING OF THE WEEK (strong women edition):
- RBG (now on Hulu). Here’s what we said in our original review:
Depending on who you ask, Ruth Bader Ginsburg might be better known as a meme than as a Supreme Court Justice. After a series of searing dissents from her conservative colleagues, Ginsburg become the subject of a tumblr, which led to everything from a book deal to SNL parodies. Men and women have Ginsburg tattoos, and now the Justice has a second career as a cultural/legal icon. RBG, the engaging new documentary from Julie Cohen and Betsy West, unpacks the history that led to her becoming so revered. Nothing about the film’s approach is innovative, but then again, you don’t need to reinvent cinema when the subject is this good.
- Carrie (now on Amazon Prime). Here’s Roger Ebert:
I wouldn’t want to spoil the movie’s climax for you by even hinting at what happens next. Just let me say that Carrie is a true horror story. Not a manufactured one, made up of spare parts from old Vincent Price classics, but a real one, in which the horror grows out of the characters themselves.The scariest horror stories — the ones by M.R. James, Edgar Allan Poe, and Oliver Onions — are like this. They develop their horrors out of the people they observe. That happens here, too. Does it ever.
- Anti-birth (now on Netflix). Here’s Simon Abrams over at RogerEbert.com:
This movie is peculiar. Its pacing is all-over-the-map. Violence sometimes threatens to break out, but it rarely does in the ways you might expect. Sex is creepy, but sometimes gross in a funny way. Secondary characters, like conspiracy theorist and good samaritan Lorna (Meg Tilly), come and go without much consistency. And while protagonists are often characterized through realistic dialogue (lots of cursing, vernacular, and naturalistic pauses), they’re just a dream sequence, pot-induced flashback, or song cue away from becoming subsumed by elusive dream logic. Oh, and this film is also kinda funny, but never in a laugh-out-loud way. It’s icky, mean-spirited and bizarre. And I left it feeling like I had just seen something new; I wanted more.
That’s it! Get streaming, kids.