New Releases for February 16!

This week we’ve got interdimensional superheroes, monsters in the deep south, a Senegalese masterpiece, a maniacal Hollywood producer, believe it or not a fourth CROCODILE DUNDEE movie, and of course, GOOD BURGER.


ARCHENEMY (2020) 

Max Fist (Joe Manganiello) is a local drunk who claims to be a superhero from the planet Chromium. He tells anyone who will listen that he was pulled into a wormhole, falling through time and space, and dropped to earth without any of his powers. No one pays any attention to Max except a teenager named Hamster (Skylan Brooks) who can’t get enough of Max’s stories. When Hamster and his sister (Zolee Griggs) get in trouble with a vicious drug syndicate led by The Manager (Glenn Howerton), Max takes to the streets as a brutal vigilante hellbent on proving himself as the hero no one believes him to be. (DVD)

AVENUE 5: SEASON 1 (2020) (2 DISKS)

All aboard for a hilarious journey across the universe in this HBO® comedy series from Armando Iannucci (HBO’s Veep). Set 40 years in the future, when traveling the solar system is a booming business, Season 1 follows life on board Avenue 5, a mash-up of a cruise ship and an interplanetary rocket ship that’s packed with luxury amenities. Among the 5,000 passengers and crew are the ship’s suave captain, Ryan Clark (Hugh Laurie); billionaire Herman Judd (Josh Gad), the mercurial face and name behind Avenue 5; his right-hand woman, Iris Kimura (Suzy Nakamura); and the head of passenger services, Matt Spencer (Zach Woods). When the ship suddenly encounters technical difficulties, it’s up to Ryan and his crew to find a way to deal with unexpected events – though they may or may not be equipped for the task. (DVD)

BELUSHI (2020) 

Director R.J. Cutler takes a revealing look at the brilliant life of comedic legend John Belushi. Known for his iconic characters and sketches on both stage and screen, few people knew his personal side, until now. Never-before-seen photos, letters and home-movies from the Belushi family archive give intimate access to the world-famous superstar. Family and friends who knew him best share intimate memories, including Dan Aykroyd, Gilda Radner, Chevy Chase, Penny Marshall, Lorne Michaels and Harold Ramis. (DVD)

BREAKING SURFACE (2020) 

A few days after Christmas, half-sisters Ida and Tuva set out on a winter dive in a remote part of the Norwegian coastline. Towards the end of the dive, a rockslide traps Tuva under water. As Ida surfaces to call for help, she discovers that the rockslide has struck above water as well, burying their equipment, phones and car keys they are completely cut off from any chance of outside rescue. As the frantic race for survival unfolds, Ida is put to the ultimate test of character and forcefulness. During Ida’s fight to save Tuva, a fractured sisterhood is exposed, and when all seems lost, the stakes rise beyond simple survival. (DVD)

CALL TO SPY (2019) 

As Great Britain’s forces were stretched thin during World War II, Winston Churchill’s Special Operations Executive began to enlist women as spies. Their daunting mission: conduct sabotage and build a resistance. Spymistress Vera Atkins, later the inspiration for Ian Fleming’s Miss Moneypenny in the James Bond franchise, was the chief recruiter for this secret army. Atkins selected two unusual candidates: Virginia Hall, an American journalist from Baltimore with a wooden leg, and Noor Inayat Khan, a wireless officer of Indian descent and an avowed pacifist. Together, they worked to undermine the Nazi regime in France. The courage, sacrifices and grit of these three women helped quell the Nazi occupation – and ultimately turned the tide of the war. (DVD)

GOODBYE SEVENTIES (2020) 

In the 1970s, the golden age of gay pornography in New York City, a promising chorus boy is injured and told he will never dance again. Distraught and unimpressed with the “art” films playing seedy Times Square theaters, he gets his friends and lovers together and they start making their own hardcore movies. Against all odds, the films are wildly successful until drugs, AIDS and cheap video technology bring it all crashing down. (DVD)

FEAR OF RAIN (2021) 

A girl living with schizophrenia struggles with terrifying hallucinations as she begins to suspect her neighbor has kidnapped a child. The only person who believes her is Caleb -a boy she isn’t even sure exists. (DVD)

GOD OF THE PIANO (2019) 

Anat (Naama Preis, winner of the Jerusalem Film Festival award for Best Actress) has never been able to reach her father’s exacting musical standards, and now her family’s hope of producing a musical prodigy rests on her unborn son. When the baby is born deaf, she cannot accept it and resorts to extreme measures to ensure that her child will be the composer that her father always wanted. But when the boy grows up indifferent to his destiny as a great pianist, Anat will have to stand up to her father – and her own actions. (DVD)

GOOD BURGER (1997) 

Can fast-food counter dudes Ed (Kel Mitchell) and Dexter (Kenan Thompson) battle big business? That’s the order of the day when Mondo Burger’s high-tech hamburger haven opens across the street from the tiny Good Burger diner. Catch up with the gags as Ed and Dexter scramble to save their jobs and stop Mondo Burger’s bid for fast-food domination! (Blu-ray)

HELTER SKELTER: AN AMERICAN MYTH (2020) (2 DISKS)

Before the Menendez brothers, O.J. and Ted Bundy, Charles Mansons name loomed large in modern stories of murder and crime. Over 50 years have passed since Manson and his devoted followers committed their horrific acts, yet the public remains in the dark about the Manson family and their journey into the abyss. How has this legendary story the stuff of sensational headlines, criminal culture and lore been left unexplored? In the most comprehensive telling of the Manson family saga in a visual medium, Helter Skelter: An American Myth features never-before-accessed interviews with former family members and journalists first on the scene and in the courtroom. This six-episode docuseries weaves these original narratives with archival footage and previously unreleased images to cast an entirely new light on the horrifying and fascinating story of the Manson family murders and their aftermath. (DVD)

HORIZON LINE (2020) 

Former couple Sara and Jackson board a single-engine plane for a routine and casual flight to their friend’s tropical island wedding. However, within minutes of takeoff, their pilot suffers a fatal heart attack, leaving them with no idea where they are, and no clue how to land the plane. With nothing but miles of ocean and sky in every direction, and a terrifying storm that’s about to envelop them, Sara and Jackson have only one shot — and there’s no going back. (DVD)

INFORMER, THE (2019) 

An ex-convict working undercover intentionally gets himself incarcerated again in order to infiltrate the mob at a maximum security prison. (DVD)

INGALLS WILDER, LAURA: PRAIRIE TO PAGE (2020) 

An unvarnished look at the unlikely author whose autobiographical fiction helped shape American ideas of the frontier and self-reliance. A Midwestern farm woman who published her first novel at age 65, Laura Ingalls Wilder transformed her frontier childhood into the best-selling “Little House” series. (DVD)

KID STAYS IN THE PICTURE (2002) 

Success Scandal Sex Tragedy Infamy… and that’s just the first reel! Rules are made to be broken. And Robert Evans has broken them all. He was the first actor to ever run a major Hollywood studio. In a decade he took it from worst to first. Voted the world’s most eligible bachelor, he was quintessential Hollywood royalty. In 1979, he had $11 million. With one mistake he spiraled south from legend to leper. In 1989, his worth was $37. Did he come back? Like a phoenix. His saga should inspire the most cynical. To quote Evans, “All my life I’ve lived on the edge and many times it came back to bite me. Was it worth it? You bet your ass it was.” His outrageous story proves that, at times, fact is far stranger than fiction. (Blu-ray)

LOVECRAFT COUNTRY: SEASON 1 (2020) (3 DISKS)

A search for a missing father turns into an otherworldly trip. Based on the 2016 novel by Matt Ruff, this HBO drama series follows Korean war vet Atticus Freeman (Jonathan Majors) as he joins his friend Letitia (Jurnee Smollett) and his Uncle George (Courtney B. Vance) on a journey across 1950s Jim Crow America in search of his father (Michael Kenneth Williams). What follows is a struggle to survive and overcome both the racist terrors of white America and the terrifying monsters that could be ripped from an H.P. Lovecraft paperback. (Blu-ray and DVD)

MANDABI (1968) (CRITERION COLLECTION)

This second feature by Ousmane Sembène was the first movie ever made in the Wolof language—a major step toward the realization of the trailblazing Senegalese filmmaker’s dream of creating a cinema by, about, and for Africans. After jobless Ibrahima Dieng receives a money order for 25,000 francs from a nephew who works in Paris, news of his windfall quickly spreads among his neighbors, who flock to him for loans even as he finds his attempts to cash the order stymied in a maze of bureaucracy, and new troubles rain down on his head. One of Sembène’s most coruscatingly funny and indignant films, Mandabi—an adaptation of a novella by the director himself—is a bitterly ironic depiction of a society scarred by colonialism and plagued by corruption, greed, and poverty. (Blu-ray and DVD)

LONG SONG (2018) 

Set during the final days of slavery in 19th century Jamaica, follow the trials, tribulations and survival of a plantation slave, July, and her odious mistress, Caroline. Told from Julys perspective as she reflects upon her life, The Long Song is a tale of love, hope and defiance in the face of injustice. (DVD)

MISS SCARLET & THE DUKE (2020) (2 DISKS)

With her inquisitive mind, Miss Eliza Scarlet has always been more interested in running her late fathers detective agency than behaving like a proper lady, much to the chagrin of family friend Inspector William Wellington of Scotland Yard. But nothing has prepared her for the dangers she is about to face as a woman in the Murder Investigation trade. (DVD)

MAYOR (2020) 

Mayor is a real-life political saga following Musa Hadid, the Christian mayor of Ramallah, during his second term in office. His immediate goals: repave the sidewalks, attract more tourism, and plan the city’s Christmas celebrations. His ultimate mission: to end the occupation of Palestine. Rich with detailed observation and a surprising amount of humor, MAYOR offers a portrait of dignity amidst the madness and absurdity of endless occupation while posing a question: how do you run a city when you don’t have a country? (DVD)

PAJAMA GAME (1957) 

Labor and management at the Sleeptite Pajama Factory are not sleeping much lately: A proposed 7 and a half cent hourly wage increase is why and a strike may result. But negotiations here involve snappy stars, terrific tunes and dynamic dances as Doris Day, John Raitt and a Broadway-seasoned cast play The Pajama Game. Songs by the Damn Yankees duo of Richard Adler and Jerry Ross and choreography by Bob Fosse generate lots of Steam Heat, all whipped together delightfully under the direction of two musical masters of stage and screen, George Abbott and Stanley Donen. Besides Steam Heat (showcasing the quirky brilliance of dancer Carol Haney), catch Hey There, I am Not at All in Love, Hernandos Hideaway, Once-a-Year Day and other all-time-great numbers. For peerless entertainment, negotiate no further. Nothing is quite the same as The Pajama Game! (Blu-ray)

RANDOM ACTS OF VIOLENCE (2020)

Comic book creator Todd Walkley, his wife, assistant and best friend, are heading to NYC Comic Con when bad things start to happen—people start getting killed. It soon becomes clear that a crazed fan is using his “SLASHERMAN” comic as inspiration for the killings. And as the bodies pile up, and Todd’s friends become victims themselves, he is forced to face the killer and put an end to his notorious comic once and for all. (DVD)

SWORDSMAN, THE (2020) 

After being blinded in a coup against the king, Joseon s greatest swordsman (Jang Hyuk) goes into hiding, far removed from his city s anguish. But when traffickers kidnap his daughter, he has no choice but to unsheathe his sword once more. (DVD)

TALE OF TWO CITIES (1935) 

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times Charles Dickens tale of love and tumult during the French Revolution comes to the screen in a sumptuous film version by the producer famed for nurturing sprawling literary works: David O. Selznick (David Copperfield, Anna Karenina, Gone with the Wind). Ronald Colman (The Prisoner of Zenda) stars as Sydney Carton sardonic, dissolute, a wastreland destined to redeem himself in an act of courageous sacrifice. It’s a far, far better thing I do than I have ever done, Carton muses at that defining moment. This is far, far better filmmaking too: a Golden Era marvel of uncanny performances top to bottom, eye-filling crowd scenes (the storming of the Bastille, thronged courtrooms, an eerie festival of public execution) and lasting emotional power. Revolution is in the air! (Blu-ray)

TOMATO RED: BLOOD MONEY (2021) 

When small town drifter Sammy Barlach drives into town on the search for his next cold beer and the bunch that’ll have him, he gets a lot more than he bargained for. Food, lodging and the possibility of a better future thanks to redheaded Jamalee and her brother Jason who dream of hitting the big time. But breaks aren’t easy to come by if you live in Venus Holler. Finding themselves powerless against the forces of corruption and prejudice, the hardest thing Sammy has to fight is the demons inside his own head. (DVD)

THE VERY EXCELLENT MR. DUNDEE (2020) 

Paul Hogan just wants a quiet life, and is happy with retirement in Brentwood, California, but can’t seem to stay out of the headlines. When his granddaughter Lucy finds out he’s been offered a knighthood for services to comedy and tells all her friends, he reluctantly accepts the offer and has six weeks to stay out of trouble before the ceremony. But where Paul goes, trouble follows, and we see Paul’s reputation hilariously destroyed the closer we get to his important meeting with his biggest Royal fan. (DVD)

WAR, THE (1994) 

It was a different time… and a different pace. Elijah Wood (The Good Son) and Kevin Costner (Field of Dreams) star in this wonderful drama from Jon Avnet, the director of Fried Green Tomatoes. This heartwarming film tells the tale of a close-knit family and their remarkable Mississippi summer of 1970. With the help of their friends, Stu (Wood) and Lidia Simmons (Lexi Randall) are determined to build the ultimate treehouse, a place of wonder and magic. Their father Stephen (Costner), a newly returned Vietnam vet, has equally high hopes to rebuild his life and fulfill his family’s dreams. Co-starring Mare Winningham (Miracle Mile) and Lucas Black (Sling Blade), The War is a captivating modern classic rich with humor, nostalgia and mesmerizing performances. (Blu-ray)

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