The Video Tapeworm

New, encore and low-price releases on Tuesday, Jan. 8

Jan 2, 2013 at 6:00 am
The Video Tapeworm
House at the End of the Street



2012; $14.98-$29.98; R

Aptly named Dreama Walker does a great job in this titillating tale of a fast-food worker who is stripped and sexually violated by her manager at the behest of a phony police officer on the phone. And if that sounds familiar, it’s because this was inspired by the real events at a Mt. Washington McDonald’s in 2004. The movie strives to reveal just how stupidly obedient the average person can be in the face of supposed authority — even if that authority isn’t proven — but we’ll be the first to admit that the thought of watching the blond-haired, doe-eyed star doff her duds was part of the draw. Is it exploitation or does it serve to illuminate the passive nature of man? You decide.


2012; $24.98; PG-13

Louisville’s own Jennifer Lawrence shines in this run-of-the-mill mystery thriller that is, quite frankly, beneath her talents. But she never lets on, completely losing herself alongside “Mom” Elisabeth Shue in a spooky tale of matricide, coming of age, missing mini-psychopaths, and taking up with the wrong guy (Max Thieriot). The movie badly wants to be Hitchcock, but the talent behind the camera simply isn’t up to the effort. That being said, this demonstrates how well a nothing-movie can be made effective and entertaining with the right talent up front — and Lawrence makes one helluva scream queen! Don’t miss it.



2011; $31.98; UR

This goofy animated spy-spoof has become one of our guiltiest of little pleasures. In this season, master spy Sterling Archer continues to baffle, confound and screw over his own agency, partly by design but mainly due to stupidity. His now-cyborg fiancée is giving him lip, the deadly Bionic Barry takes over the KGB, and Malory — Archer’s mom and his boss — stays busy screwing every guy she can mount. This thing is a grand mal hoot!


2010; $14.98-$31.98; UR

The “bears” in the title refer to the large, hairy lumberjack-like studs of New York’s specialty gay scene. The plot of this twinkie romcom reads like “Sex and the City,” with a newbie trying to fit into a tight-knit bunch of beefy, bearded gay pals who seem to devote every waking minute to the pursuit of men. It’s all played for fun and friendship, just like SATC, and we can’t help but notice how much these guys look like hormone-depleted Kim Cattrall at that series’ end. Fun.


2012; $18.98; R

A more faithful version of the venerable and strikingly violent comic book than Silvester Stallone’s 1995 effort set in a dystopian future where motorcycle-riding “judges” have the power to accuse, try and execute criminals on the spot. Karl Urban does a good job, as always, in the title role, despite having to work with a massive helmet covering his face through most of the movie. A nonstop running blood bath.


2012; $27.98; PG

Tim Burton — do we really need to go on?! — returns to his roots, retelling one of his earliest live-action efforts in state-of-the-art physical animation. A clever boy-scientist jumpstarts his beloved pet “Sparky” after a car accident but has trouble keeping it a secret. When less-noble friends steal his method, a mad chase ensues with some neat surprises — including Gamera! But what makes this so endearing is Burton’s affection for the genre, with character names like Elsa Van Helsing, Edgar “E” Gore, Shelly, and visuals that meld suburbia with the Universal Studio back lot. Absolutely freakin’ wonderful.


2012; $16.93-$22.99; PG-13

We are big fans of Dakota Fanning and have forgiven her for appearing in “The Twilight Saga” (hey, a girl’s gotta eat). Here she plays a burgeoning woman-child with an incurable disease who decides to make the most of her remaining days by going through the wildest, craziest rebellion any teenager ever had — keeping it PG-13, of course. She ends up with a boyfriend (natch) and an arrest record in this uplifting tale of making the most of life, based on Jenny Downham’s book, “Before I Die.”


2012; $16.98; UR

This drama from the National Geographic Channel aims to re-enact the preparations and execution of the title raid in as much realism as the medium allows. Cam Gigandet, Anson Mount, Freddy Rodríguez, Xzibit and a handful of other second-tier actors give it their all in a fact-based, you-are-there outing, largely directed using actual footage from the raid. It’s no “Zero Dark Thirty” but provides plenty of righteous action and a satisfying stiff at the end.


2009; $20.98-$22.98; UR

Few people today remember this 2009 one-season wonder from Mike Judge, creator of “King of the Hill.” The Goodes are a family of, well, do-gooders who make a conscious effort to always do the “right” thing — and usually find that each right thing just makes something else worse. Join them as they recycle until their home is a trash-heap, try to “teach” the dog to be a vegan, and perform a very creepy father/daughter abstinence-pledge/mock-marriage ceremony. This was simply too good for TV; highly recommended.


1971; $31.98-$39.98; R

Our pick for the greatest road movie ever made. Soft-rocker James Taylor and Dennis “Beach Boy” Wilson, in their first and only acting roles, star as gearhead slackers in a primer-gray ’55 Chevy. They are racing Warren Oates’ shiny new GTO across the highways of America, but the race is just a vehicle for their encounters with hitchhikers (Harry Dean Stanton), the law, small towns, and sweet nookie (Laurie Bird). The very definition of an American Classic, now given the Criterion Blu-ray treatment; a must-own for any movie fan. (FYI: The childlike Ms. Bird committed suicide in 1979 at the home of boyfriend Art Garfunkel, not long after appearing in “Annie Hall.” She was 25 years old.)

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1967; $44.98; UR

The most celebrated movie you never heard of. Director Shohei Imamura was the undisputed master of the documentary, and this film explores a too common social problem in Japan: ordinary men suddenly disappearing, leaving jobs and fiancees behind. But as the doc progresses, you realize that the director is playing with you, the viewer, cleverly blurring the lines between fact and fiction — you simply won’t believe how disorienting this is! Extremely entertaining, and a must-own for any fan of cinema. This set also includes five “real” Imamura docs including 1975’s amazing “Karayuki-san, the Making of a Prostitute,” about the thousands of women forced into prostitution after WWII by the Japanese government.


2012; $24.98-$27.98; UR

This little thriller about group of youngsters who go looking for whoever — or whatever — is responsible for the unexplained disappearances in their small town has a nice “Goonies” feel to it. Made for the Chiller Channel; recommended.


2012; $24.98; R

A fun action/romantic comedy starring comics Dax Shepard (“Parenthood”), Kristen Bell, Tom Arnold (No, wait! Come back!), Bradley Cooper and hot little Kristin Chenoweth. Dax is a good guy, hiding in the Witness Protection Program and engaged to unknowing Bell. She’s offered a job in L.A. — the one town he cannot go back to — but they pile into his classic car and hit the road anyway, with the Feds, bad guys and redneck hillbillies (who want the engine from his car!) on their tail. Worth checkin’ out.


2012; $49.95; UR

As if you should need proof, this show is an excellent example of why British TV is great and ours is shit by comparison. Now in its 15th season(!), this follows the life and investigations of a veteran police detective (thesp John Nettles) charged with solving murders in the “murder capital of England,” the deceptively peaceful county of Midsomer. Jason Hughes is his up-and-coming sergeant, with Jane Wymark and Barry Jackson topping off one of the best casts anywhere. Oh! And the theme song is played on a theremin! Too much fun.


2011; $24.98; UR

The true tale of paratroopers who volunteered for a secret suicide mission: To arrive 30 minutes before the D-Day invasion, mark where troops could land, and set up the critical equipment that would guide the airborne assault. The lives of every man who was about to storm the beaches of Normandy — and the end of WWI itself — depended on their courage. A rousing, old-school dose of patriotism, revealed for the first time.


2011; $19.98; UR

If you fondly remember “Koyaanisqatsi,” that swirling, hypnotic look at our world in motion from the early ’80s, then you will love this. Dialogue free, but with a provocative soundtrack culled from around the world during its four-year-long shoot in over 20 countries, this updates the Koyaanisqatsi concept and expands on it, including such images as hundreds of thousands of Muslims amassed in Mecca, counterpointed by lava flows, Chinese factories, Hurricane Katrina and scenes of men doing what is necessary to feed their bellies. Simply put: This will blow your mind. And maybe open it!


2011; $24.98; UR

This Spanish thriller looks at the fallacy of “safety” in a modern society. Lovely vivacious Marta Etura lives comfortably under the watchful eye of Luis Tosar, the doorman at her tiny apartment building. But the doorman has a secret burning hatred for anyone who is happy and uses his position to quietly make her life miserable. A slow, intelligent and thought-provoking film you’ll be telling your friends about.


2011; $23.98-$26.98; UR

Martin Sheen stars in this little indie award-winner as the priest of a small Irish town in 1956, just as electricity is about to arrive. He spars with Stephen Rea, hoping to build that which he misses most about civilization — a movie house — when Parish Bishop Tom Hickey demands that he come up with a means of financing a fancy, modern church. Lots of great performances, a sweet script and the breathtaking Irish countryside combine to make this a minor gem.


2012; $19.98; UR

This movie is a royal hoot! A good old-fashioned monster movie, set back during the Y2K panic and filmed with absolutely no CGI! A family heads for the supposed safety of the hills, just in case society breaks down at midnight, and are accosted by the usual clan of inbred rednecks (including Jessica Simons as a redheaded hottie). But it seems that something else, something that sleeps far underground, has also been waiting for Y2K ... Because that’s the time to feed! Bwahahaha! This is what you hope for when you turn on the damn SciFi Channel.


2011; $19.98-$24.98; UR

A trio of bright, attractive high-schoolers about to graduate face the world and themselves in this unexpectedly good drama set in and around a Baptist church in South Carolina. Curly-haired angel Molly Kunz is a pastor’s daughter, stopped dead in her tracks by doubt, religious and otherwise. Her bubbly best bud, Allison Torem, is such a devout believer that she can’t make rational decisions. And their guy-pal, Tyler Ross (who looks like a ventriloquist’s dummy), realizes he is gay. As solid an indie coming-of-age drama as we’ve ever seen.