New Releases for July 6!

by Ben Redder

It’s New Release Tuesday! This week we’ve got Bigfoot, a stealth FAST & FURIOUS prequel, both 48 HRSes, some vintage 90’s thrillers, a Tarkovsky masterwork from Criterion, and tons more. 

15 THINGS YOU DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT BIGFOOT (#1 WILL BLOW YOUR MIND) (2019)

The VICE Guide to Bigfoot, this paranormal comedy follows a hopelessly millennial reporter on the most important assignment of his career: Bigfoot. But after following a prominent cryptozoologist into the Appalachian foothills, he’s forced to answer the question “is a good story worth dying for?” (DVD)

42nd STREET: THE MUSICAL (2019)

Peggy Sawyer is from small-town America and just a face in the chorus line of ‘Pretty Lady’, the new show from legendary director Julian Marsh. But when leading lady, Dorothy Brock is injured, Peggy’s dreams of stardom just may come true. (DVD)

48 HRS (1982)       

The, for better or worse, quintessential predecessor to prime buddy cop fare such as Lethal Weapon or perhaps even Bad Boys, 48 Hrs. is maybe too much of the 70s cop movie it’s trying to move on from and not enough of the fun found even in lesser movies like Running Scared or Tango & Cash. If you’re well aware of the subject material involved here, 48 Hrs. might be a worthwhile revisit. And while it might seem fascinating to see Eddie Murphy in his first film role for our younger readers, if you’ve grown tired of comedies filled with racist language, regardless of its intent, this movie will feel well-tired and loathsome at best. It’s not to say this is a bad film, but trust me, Walter Hill made better movies before and after this one, and this reviewer recommends checking out the rest of his shelf in our director’s section. (Blu-ray)

AMUNDSEN: THE GREATEST EXPEDITION (2019)

Roald Amundsen was the first researcher to reach both the North and South Poles. The British explorer Robert Scott was hot on his heels on the trip to the South Pole 1910-1911. The discoverers were in a bitter competition with each other. Amundsen’s expeditions were largely organised and financed by his brother Leon. However, there was constant conflict and conflict between the two. (DVD)

ANOTHER 48 HRS (1990)

The chemistry of the two leads cannot be denied, but Another 48 Hrs. is just more of the same dynamic we no longer find funny from the first film, on display again here almost as a response to its predecessor’s countless buddy cop movie imitators of the mid-to-late 80’s. If you were there for the first one, this is nothing but more of the same to a lesser degree, so go for it. But have you seen Southern Comfort? Or The Warriors? (Blu-ray)

BACKSTROM: SERIES 1 (2020)

Unscrupulous and arrogant murder detective Evert Bäckström finds himself with the hardest case he ever had when a skull pierced with bullet holes is found on an uninhabited island in the archipelago. (DVD)

BETTER LUCK TOMORROW (2002)

Oh, so you’ve seen ALL of the Fast and Furious films? And Han is your favorite character? Well, buckle up, because making its way to Blu-ray for the very first time is the debut feature of Justin Lin, who went on to helm some of the most beloved entries in the franchise, including Tokyo Drift, Fast Five, and Fast & Furious 6, as well as the most recent entry, F9: The Fast Saga. On top of all that, Better Luck Tomorrow is the first appearance of fan-favorite Han, who in this film cannot stop smoking, while in later Fast and Furious films can be seen binge eating, trying to rid himself of the nasty habit. A totally different film in almost every way from the FF series, Better Luck Tomorrow is an well-directed and intriguing coming of age story with an entirely non-white cast, and exciting debut from Lin, to boot. (Blu-ray)

THE BLACK MARBLE (1980)

Pragmatic Sgt. Natalie Zimmermann is paired with Valnikov, a romantic detective of Russian origin who is going through a midlife crisis. They fall in love while solving the case of the kidnapping of a socialite’s pet dog. iMDB calls this “A romantic comedy which explores the pressures on police officers.” Pressure to do what, exactly? (Blu-ray)

BRINGING UP BABY (1938)

Making its hi-def debut in the US, Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant star in Howard Hawks’ classic 1938 comedy, Bringing Up Baby. Hoping to procure a million-dollar endowment from a wealthy society matron for his museum, a hapless palaeontologist finds himself entangled with a dizzy heiress as the manic misadventures pile up – a missing dinosaur bone, a leopard on the loose and plenty of gender-bending mayhem among them. (Blu-ray, DVD)

DEFENDING JACOB: SEASON 1 (2020)

A gripping, character-driven thriller based on the 2012 New York Times best-selling novel of the same name, and starring Chris Evans, Michelle Dockery, Jaeden Martell, Cherry Jones, Pablo Schreiber, Betty Gabriel and Sakina Jaffrey. The limited drama series unfolds around a shocking crime that rocks a small Massachusetts town and one family in particular, forcing an assistant district attorney to choose between his sworn duty to uphold justice and his unconditional love for his son. (DVD)

DRACULA (1979)

From director John Badham and writer W.D. Richter comes Frank Langella as the titular Dracula in this elegant retelling of the Bram Stoker classic. In it, a man washes ashore in England after a shipwreck and is found by Mina Van Helsing (Jan Francis). The man introduces himself as Count Dracula (Frank Langella) of Transylvania, and proceeds to integrate himself into the lives of Mina and her friend Lucy Seward (Kate Nelligan). However, when Mina dies and her father, Prof. Van Helsing (Laurence Olivier), attributes her death to a vampire, evidence indicates that Count Dracula is the monster, and Lucy is his next target. (Blu-ray)

EYE FOR AN EYE (1996)

After her daughter Julie is victim to a series of disgusting crimes, Karen McCann is turned down by the LAPD after she requests they keep suspect Robert Doob in jail for good instead of paroling him. Nevertheless, the LAPD and the courts do decide to parole him and Karen turns to a group of hit man trainers for help. (Blu-ray)

FLESH AND BONE (1993)

For fans of midwestern thrillers in the vein of Red Rock West, One False Move or even Breakdown, Flesh and Bone features a stellar cast and an incredible script from writer-director Steve Kloves (The Fabulous Baker Boys, Wonder Boys, most of the Harry Potter series). Haunted by memories of his father murdering a family, Arlis Sweeney (Dennis Quaid) prefers to keep to himself, focusing his energy on his work. One day, the traumatic past that eats away at him returns when he meets Kay Davies (Meg Ryan), a woman connected to the bloody event. Against all odds, Arlis and Kay fall in love. However, when his father, Roy (James Caan), reappears in his life — with the coldhearted Ginnie (Gwyneth Paltrow) in tow — Arlis must deal with his past demons. (Blu-ray)

ICY BREASTS (1974)

A screenwriter meets a beautiful woman on a beach who bears a striking resemblance to the main character in a script he is writing. After falling head over heels in love with her, he hears from her lawyer that she has a dark and violent past. (Blu-ray, DVD)

THE JERK (1979)

Director Carl Reiner and star Steve Martin bring down the house with one of the most fun, silliest and beyond ridiculous comedies of their careers in The Jerk. Navin Johnson (Martin) is the adopted son of a poor black sharecropper family, whose crazy inventions lead him from rags to riches and right back to rags. Along the way, he’s smitten with a lady motorcycle racer, survives a series of screwball attacks by a deranged killer, becomes a millionaire by inventing the “Opti-grab” handle for eyeglasses – and shows why he’s one of the hottest comic performers in the world. (Blu-ray)

LAST TIME I COMMITTED SUICIDE (1997)

During the 1940s, poet Neal Cassady (pre-Boogie Nights Thomas Jane) has adopted the beat lifestyle. He has to decide between his first love, Joan, and a teenage temptress. When Joan attempts suicide, Neal gets scared and runs away, but he gets a second chance at happiness. (Blu-ray)

MIRROR (1975)

A subtly ravishing passage through the halls of time and memory, this sublime reflection on twentieth-century Russian history by Andrei Tarkovsky (Stalker) is as much a poem composed in images, or a hypnagogic hallucination, as it is a work of cinema. In a richly textured collage of varying film stocks and newsreel footage, the recollections of a dying poet flash before our eyes, his dreams mingling with scenes of childhood, wartime, and marriage, all imbued with the mystical power of a trance. Largely dismissed by Soviet critics on its release because of its elusive narrative structure, Mirror has since taken its place as one of the director’s most renowned and influential works, a stunning personal statement from an artist transmitting his innermost thoughts and feelings directly from psyche to screen. (DVD and Blu-ray)

MOVIE HOARDERS: VHS TO DVD AND BEYOND (2021)

Popular YouTubers, filmmakers and collectors lift the curtain on their manic media collecting obsession that is not only a huge part of their lives, but the lifeblood of their existence! This new collector’s documentary goes where no documentary has gone before as we enter a world of Horror hoarders, VHS hoarders, Vinyl addicts and Laserdisc obsessives. Enter the realm where DVDs and Blu-Rays are king and money is no object, when a new release hits it’s a must buy! Physical Media truly lives on in this fascinating documentary from the creators of VHS Lives, VHS Nasty and Oh! the Horror! Brought to you by Tony Newton the creator and producer of VHS Lives and 60 Seconds to Die series! (DVD)

MR. JEALOUSY (1997)

After his first date at age 15 ended with the girl making out with another man at a party, aspiring writer Lester Grimm (Eric Stoltz) has treated all his girlfriends with jealousy and suspicion. While dating Ramona Ray (Annabella Sciorra), paranoia gets the best of him when he discovers that her most recent ex is successful novelist Dashiell Frank (Chris Eigeman). Lester begins attending the same group therapy sessions as Dashiell to learn about Ramona’s past with him. Though it might add up to less than some of his better known works, Mr. Jealousy still sports some of the Baumbach trademarks we’ve grown to know and love, and Eigeman’s performance, as always, is a welcome breath of fresh air. (Blu-ray)

THE MURDERS: SEASON 1 (2019)

This Canadian police procedural drama television series created by Damon Vignale stars Kate Jameson as a rookie homicide detective seeking redemption in all her investigations after her negligence causes a fellow officer’s death. (DVD)

MY WONDERFUL WANDA (2020)

The Polish woman Wanda, 35, looks after Joseph, 70, in his family villa by the lake. She is there for him around the clock and also helps his wife Elsa, 75. The youngest son Gregi, 28, likes her very much. The work is poorly paid, but Wanda needs the money for her own family in Poland. Since everyone lives under one roof, Wanda gets an intimate view of their family life. So intimate that Wanda unexpectedly becomes pregnant. (DVD)

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC: GENIUS SEASON 3: ARETHA (2020)

Genius is an American anthology period drama television series developed by Noah Pink and Kenneth Biller which premiered on National Geographic. The third season chronicles several periods in the life of Aretha Franklin: as a young gospel singer impregnated at the age of twelve, and as a rising star who was crowned the “Queen of Soul”. (DVD)

NIGHTMARE WAKES (2021)

Inspired by the torrid love affair of Mary and Percy Shelley as Mary writes her famous novel, Frankenstein. As Mary writes, the characters of her novel come to life and begin to plague her relationship with Percy. Soon, she must choose between true love and her literary masterpiece.(DVD)

NOVA: PICTURE A SCIENTIST (2021)

(Season 48 Episode 3) Women make up less than a quarter of STEM professionals in the United States, and numbers are even lower for women of color. But a growing group of researchers is exposing longstanding discrimination and making science more inclusive. (DVD)

PERCY VS GOLIATH (2021)

Percy Schmeiser, a third-generation farmer, gets sued by a corporate giant for allegedly using their patented seeds. With little resources to fight a legal battle, Percy joins forces with up-and-coming attorney Jackson Weaver and environmental activist Rebecca Salcau for a monumental case that leads all the way to the Supreme Court. (DVD)

PHANTOM OF THE AIR: 4K RESTORATION (1933)

This classic 12 part serial, originally released by Universal in 1933, remains a classic of pre-Code action filmmaking. After inventing an anti-gravity device called the “Contragrav,” scientist Thomas Edmonds and his daughter, Mary, attend the National Air Races in Cleveland, Ohio in search of a pilot to demonstrate the device and Bob Raymond, from the U.S. Border Patrol, is chosen. Unbeknownst to Edmonds and Mary, Mortimor Crome, who is the owner of the International Import and Export Company and a friend of Mary’s, is actually the leader of a gang of smugglers and is after Edmonds’ invention. During the demonstration at the air meet, Bob Raymond narrowly escapes death after his aircraft is sabotaged by Mortimer Crome and one of his cronies. This leads to Raymond being all-in and coming to Edmonds’ aid in foiling Crome’s plans and ultimately defeating him, using another of Edmonds’ inventions, which was a “superplane,” called the “Phantom.” (DVD)

REBELLION OF THE HANGED: 4K RESTORATION (1954)

A logging camp, deep in the Mexican jungle is the setting for this dark, cataclysmic drama. A man and his family go to work in a mahogany camp, only to find themselves and their coworkers treated as semi-slave laborers and the recipients of beatings and brutal punishments. Pushed to the brink of fury, the man decides the only way out for himself, and his coworkers, is for him to lead them in a violent and bloody revolt against their oppressors. Winner of 4-Silver Ariel Awards and nominated for the Venice Film Festival (1954) Golden Lion, La rebelión de los colgados was restored in 4K from a 35mm negative by the Cineteca Nacional de Mexico. (DVD)

RINGMASTER (2018)

Nationwide quietness. The streets are empty. Everyone’s glued to their screens at home, watching the final game. In the outskirts of Denmark, close to the German border, a small gas station needs to be open for service, even on this special night. Two young women have the shift. Ambitious Agnes is in the backroom putting finishing touches on her thesis, while free-spirited Belinda is on her phone, hoping to get the attention of her boyfriend. Unfortunately, the shift is not going to be as uneventful as they think, because no customers also means no witnesses, and the girls have been spotted to play a special part in a very different sort of game. (DVD)

ROAD TO SALINA (1970)

Jonas (Walker Jr) is on the road to Salina. He stops at a gas station/restaurant and its owner, Mara (Hayworth), is struck by his resemblance to her dead son, Rocky (Porel). He decides to stay on and meets Mara’s friend Warren (Begley) and Rocky’s sister Billie (Famer), but dark facts are to be revealed about the death of Rocky. (Blu-ray, DVD)

SATYAGRAHA (2013)

Retired teacher and ex-principal Dwarka Anand (Amitabh Bachchan) in Ambikapur is an idealistic man who lives with his engineer son Akhilesh and daughter-in-law Sumitra. His engineer son Akhilesh’s friend Manav (Ajay Devgn) is an ambitious capitalist. Manav cherishes his friend Akhilesh (Indraneil Sengupta) who suddenly dies in a road accident maliciously conducted by Sangram Singh, brother of India’s minister Minister Balram Singh (Manoj Bajpayee), who, unknown to all of India, is the mastermind behind Akhilesh’s murder. (DVD)

SHE DONE HIM WRONG (1933)

Romantic comedy starring Mae West and Cary Grant. Lou (West) is a singer working at the Gay Nineties saloon owned by Gus Jordan (Noah Beery). In order to keep Lou by his side, Gus plies her with diamonds. What she doesn’t know is that Gus actually traffics in prostitution and runs a counterfeiting ring to help finance her expensive gifts. Lou has her share of male admirers who she keeps at arm’s length. But the tough woman soon finds her heart melting for a handsome young man, Capt. Cummings (Grant), who works for the local city mission. (blu-ray)

STREET GANG: HOW WE GOT TO SESAME STREET (2021)

Go inside the hearts and minds of the “Sesame Street” creators, artists and educators who established one of the most influential and enduring children’s series in television history. With exclusive behind-the-scenes footage and more than 20 original interviews, filmmaker Marilyn Agrelo introduces audiences to a gang of visionaries who set out to entertain and educate young minds by harnessing the power of television with furry characters, catchy songs and a diverse cast. (DVD)

SUPER FRENCHIE (2020)

From humble beginnings to top extreme athlete in his field, SUPER FRENCHIE provides an intimate look at the life of professional ski-BASE jumper Matthias Giraud who stops at nothing to pursue his passion for adventure. The film combines the thrills of some of the world’s most dangerous sports with Matthias’ personal experience to tell a heart-racing and inspirational story. (DVD)

SWITCHBACK (1997)

After his son is kidnapped by a notorious serial killer, FBI agent Frank LaCrosse (Dennis Quaid) travels to Amarillo, Texas, where he believes the murderer is in hiding. Although officially taken off the case because of its personal significance to him, Frank continues to pursue the killer, causing concern for local sheriff Buck Olmstead (R. Lee Ermey). When another victim pops up at a nearby car garage, Frank knows that he is as close as he’ll ever be to tracking down the elusive kidnapper. (Blu-ray)

THRESHOLD (2020)

Location scouting for his upcoming film, Aras, an Armenian director embarks on a journey to the ruins of the ancient Armenian capital of Ani, now located in eastern Turkey. Forced into a circuitous detour through Georgia due to closed borders, he is confronted by the complex geopolitical realities in the region and a growing sense of historic loss. (Blu-ray, DVD)

WHEN HITLER STOLE PINK RABBIT (2019)

The story of a Jewish family’s escape from 1933 Berlin to Europe tackles prejudice, exile, displacement and adaptation, as told from the perspective of the author’s alter ego, nine year-old Anna Kemper (Riva Krymalowski in her feature film debut). Anna is too busy with schoolwork and friends to notice Hitler’s face glaring from posters plastered all over 1933 Berlin. But when her father (Oliver Masucci) — based on the prominent theater critic Alfred Kerr — suddenly vanishes, the family is secretly hurried out of Germany. Anna begins to understand life will never be the same as she and her family navigate unfamiliar lands and cope with the challenges of being refugees.

WHITE SANDS (1992)

Small-town New Mexico sheriff Ray Dolezal (Willem Dafoe) stumbles upon a corpse clutching a suitcase containing half a million dollars. Assuming the dead man’s identity in an effort to track down his killers, the sheriff gets drawn into a complex FBI sting operation masterminded by hot-headed agent Greg Meeker (Samuel L. Jackson), who is attempting to take down international gun runners Gorman Lennox (Mickey Rourke) and Lane Bodine (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio). (Blu-ray)

WIDOW COUDERC (1971)

Her youth has been spent working for a farm family, being raped by father and son, marrying the son who has now left her a happy widow. She is happy because World War I is over and she is enjoying being in control of the farm. And then she hires the handsome stranger who helped her carry the new incubator for chicks from the bus and across the canal. In the house by the canal with the job of raising and lowering the bridge for passing boats lives the widow’s envious sister-in-law along with husband and nubile daughter. (Blu-ray)

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