Video Tapeworm

Nov 25, 2015 at 2:11 pm
Grace of Monaco
Grace of Monaco

THIS WEEK’S TWIN PEEKS

GRACE OF MONACO 2015; $19.98; UR A stellar biopic about a unique time in modern history and a truly unique individual, beautiful Grace “Rear Window” Kelly. She walked out of Hollywood in 1956 to marry Prince Rainier of Monaco, but by ‘62 their marriage was on the rocks — and the principality was about to be invaded by the French! In the midst of this chaos Alfred Hitchcock offered her the starring role in “Marnie.” Could she just walk out of her marriage and the obligations to her people in this time of crisis? Nicole Kidman is perfect as always in the lead, with Tim Roth as the Prince, plus Frank Langella, Paz Vega and Parker Posey. Old-world filmmaking at its best.

THE HUNTING GROUND 2015; $26.98; PG-13 Dave here. I first attended UofL decades ago as a very young man, shocked to witness the institutionalized culture of sexual abuse first-hand while living at a frat house. So the only thing which surprised me about this doc on US college sex crime was how much worse the problem has become. While attackers are often seen as “good ol’ boys” protected by the universities and their precious sports programs, many victims abandon their dreams of education and career; some commit suicide. But a new dawn may be coming. If justice is a dish best served cold, this will chill you to the bone.


OTHER DVDs of INTEREST

ALL ABOUT E 2015; $24.98; UR Lesbian-themed cinema has outpaced all other gay cinema in its ability to attract a mainstream audience. Case in point: This wonderfully funny, upbeat Australian rom-com/crime-chase film. Gorgeous Mandahla Rose of “Wolf Creek 2” plays a sexy DJ, up to her neck in trouble when she literally trips over a big bag of cash. Should she keep it? Well, duh! Unfortunately, the mobsters who lost it have other ideas, spawning an intense roadtrip with her husband-in-name-only, aiming for the Outback home of her ex-girlfriend, played by big blonde Julia Billington. We liked it.

ASSASSINATION 2015; $24.98; UR South Korean action flicks are something of a drug here at TapeWorm Towers, spurring crowds of unpaid junkie-minions to crowd around our penthouse steps in hopes of sampling the sweet rush of South Korean video goodness. This particular historical action-thriller is set during the Japanese occupation of 1933, with resistance fighters planning to assassinate the Japanese commander. But a traitor in their midst threatens not just their lives, but the future of the free world! The highlight for us was model/actress Gianna Jun as the imprisoned sniper, central to their plans. Hey! Everyone back to work!

DRAMATICAL MURDER: COMPLETE COLLECTION 2014; $49.98-69.98; UR A complex anime for teens and adults that’s hard to describe but easy to become addicted to. On a corporate-owned island in near-future Japan, residents are confined to a dismal town, away from the glitterati in the massive, luxurious resort. There a poor young man is forced to compete in a cyber game for the sport of the rich, with help from pet-like cybernetic “Allmates” and his secret “second voice” with which he can control others — a power which turns him ever darker and more destructive. A breathtaking and imaginatively allegorical tale that succeeds on every level.

GOODNIGHT MOMMY 2014; $20.98; R This German-language Austrian thriller is a bombshell of ‘80s-style posing and ickiness that, while it never scales the heights of terror, succeeds in creating an original and truly frightening atmosphere. A pair of twin 9-year-old boys, disoriented by their sudden move to a new home deep in the country, are doubly troubled with their mom having just had facial surgery — she doesn’t look, sound or act like their mother at all! Disturbing as hell, with pale Susanne Wuest (who does a brief nude scene, hence the R rating) as the mom.

MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000:VOL. XXXIV 2015; $46.98-59.98; UR The legendary saga of MST3K continues, here proffering four fab flicks from American International Pictures, that less-than-stellar studio which ruled America’s b&w monster-movie era. Includes “Viking Women Vs. The Great Sea Serpent,” “War Of The Colossal Beast” (Bert I. Gordon’s followup to “The Amazing Collossal Man”), “The She-Creature” (highlighted by Paul Blaisdell’s best-ever creature-costume), and one of our all-time favorite flicks, Roger Corman’s “The Undead.” A truly exceptional collection of stinkers, all new to MSTie video, with two episodes hosted by Joel Hodgson and two from Mike Nelson. One of their best-ever sets.

THE BOLD ONES: THE LAWYERS: THE COMPLETE SERIES 1969; $56.98; UR Legal taskmaster Burt “Sam The Snowman” Ives expands his practice by hiring attorneys Joseph “Mannix” Campanella and James “Melrose Place” Farentino in this three-season wonder that laid the groundwork for all the “L.A. Law,” “Law & Order,” and “Ally McBeal,” shows that followed. One of the very first legal shows to take on issues ripped from the day’s headlines ... back when days actually had headlines. Eight disks, including all 27 one-hour episodes and both pilot movies.


*** More Recommended Videos for our On-Line Readers, Only!

ANGELIC LAYER: COMPLETE COLLECTION

2001; $34.98-49.98; UR

A welcome repackaging of a seminal amine series based on the hit manga. 12-year old Misaki, an average girl with no apparent skill for sports or music, becomes inspired to compete in a national robot-doll-based tournament when she moves from her small town to Tokyo. A strange man named Icchan becomes her mentor, and soon she is literally taking on the world. With sci-fi drama, comedy and action – plus the credo that even the smallest can stand tall if they try hard – this is a must-own for anime fans of all ages.

BLACK SAILS: SEASONS 1 & 2

2014; $58.98-99.98; UR

Starz has a certified hit on its hands with this exciting and very adult tale of Robert Louis Stevenson’s Captain Flint and his band of cutthroats, set twenty years before the events of “Treasure Island.” Brit-TV stalwart Toby Stephens chews the scenery as Flint, with Luke Arnold as Silver, though the standout is big Zach McGowan who commands his ship like a force of nature as Captain Charles Van. But the men are mere window dressing: The real stars include sultry, bisexual love-kitten Jessica Parker Kennedy, providing much of the requisite nudity, and lithe nubile blondie Hannah New who repeatedly walks the captain’s plank (insert rimshot here). Man, these pirates sure got a lot of tail!

FEAR THE WALKING DEAD: SEASON 1

2015; $24.98; UR

This AMC spinoff of “The Walking Dead”, wisely set at the very cusp of the “walker” Apocalypse, is a welcome return to the fear and tension that has been lost in TWD of late. The nature of the zombies is still largely unknown, and their full effect on the world not yet revealed, which lets the characters’ imaginations run wild and focuses the plot in ways more relatable to the viewer. And what a cast! Our favorite is Alycia Debnam-Carey, previously of “The 100”, part of the central – and wildly dysfunctional – Clark family. Surprisingly funny; and yes: some of the plot elements are just plain silly, but all in all a nice addition to the canon.

ROGER WATERS THE WALL

2015; $17.98; R

This may be the greatest musical presentation ever captured on film – it’s definitely the greatest live cinematic performance we’ve ever seen. Roger Waters performs the entire Pink Floyd album “The Wall” in a 2-hour-plus extravaganza, bringing a new perspective to the admittedly dark proceedings. Conceived as a personal journey through the pain, loss, and cruelty of life, the now almost-four-decade-older Waters considers these elements in light of a man seeking hope for his grandkids, praying for some cathartic revelation that will make all the suffering worthwhile. A watermark event in musical history, available on Blu-Ray with too many bonus goodies to count. Required.


*** More Recommended Videos for our On-Line Readers, Only! ANGELIC LAYER: COMPLETE COLLECTION 2001; $34.98-49.98; UR A welcome repackaging of a seminal amine series based on the hit manga. 12-year old Misaki, an average girl with no apparent skill for sports or music, becomes inspired to compete in a national robot-doll-based tournament when she moves from her small town to Tokyo. A strange man named Icchan becomes her mentor, and soon she is literally taking on the world. With sci-fi drama, comedy and action – plus the credo that even the smallest can stand tall if they try hard – this is a must-own for anime fans of all ages.

BLACK SAILS: SEASONS 1 & 2 2014; $58.98-99.98; UR Starz has a certified hit on its hands with this exciting and very adult tale of Robert Louis Stevenson’s Captain Flint and his band of cutthroats, set twenty years before the events of “Treasure Island.” Brit-TV stalwart Toby Stephens chews the scenery as Flint, with Luke Arnold as Silver, though the standout is big Zach McGowan who commands his ship like a force of nature as Captain Charles Van. But the men are mere window dressing: The real stars include sultry, bisexual love-kitten Jessica Parker Kennedy, providing much of the requisite nudity, and lithe nubile blondie Hannah New who repeatedly walks the captain’s plank (insert rimshot here). Man, these pirates sure got a lot of tail!

FEAR THE WALKING DEAD: SEASON 1 2015; $24.98; UR This AMC spinoff of “The Walking Dead”, wisely set at the very cusp of the “walker” Apocalypse, is a welcome return to the fear and tension that has been lost in TWD of late. The nature of the zombies is still largely unknown, and their full effect on the world not yet revealed, which lets the characters’ imaginations run wild and focuses the plot in ways more relatable to the viewer. And what a cast! Our favorite is Alycia Debnam-Carey, previously of “The 100”, part of the central – and wildly dysfunctional – Clark family. Surprisingly funny; and yes: some of the plot elements are just plain silly, but all in all a nice addition to the canon.

ROGER WATERS THE WALL 2015; $17.98; R This may be the greatest musical presentation ever captured on film – it’s definitely the greatest live cinematic performance we’ve ever seen. Roger Waters performs the entire Pink Floyd album “The Wall” in a 2-hour-plus extravaganza, bringing a new perspective to the admittedly dark proceedings. Conceived as a personal journey through the pain, loss, and cruelty of life, the now almost-four-decade-older Waters considers these elements in light of a man seeking hope for his grandkids, praying for some cathartic revelation that will make all the suffering worthwhile. A watermark event in musical history, available on Blu-Ray with too many bonus goodies to count. Required.

A More Complete Listing and Free Vids at VideoTapeworm.com