Nick's Pics Nick
Nicholson Film & Home Entertainment Critic
This column expresses the personal opinions/views of the
writer. If you would like to express your opinions/views
regarding the column, write a SIGNED letter to the
editor. Name can be withheld by request with a valid day
time phone number.
The 1970's era DC antihero Jonah Hex makes his way to the big screen as co-screenwriters Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor team to follow the disfigured gunslinger and part-time bounty hunter on his biggest adventure yet. Supernatural elements combine with Western aesthetics to take viewers on a wild and bloody ride, with Josh Brolin leading the way as Hex and John Malkovich stepping into the villainous role of Turnbull. Jimmy Hayward, most well known as the director for Horton Hears a Who also directs this picture.
Since the film is based on a comic book, you must realize this film will be chocked full of completely inane and unbelievable fodder on which theaters goers will be subjected, right? I mean, come on. Gatling guns mounted on either side of a horse? Pistols that are actually cross bows that launch dynamite? And since when does one stick of dynamite nearly destroy a city block? You know what? It really doesn't matter. This is a popcorn flick if there ever was one. Josh Brolin is a good lead as Hex, however John Malkovich steals every scene. If there is a better modern day actor bad guy, I have yet to see him. That's the positive. Megan Fox represents the negative with this film - as well as what is wrong with society. The high priced and need I also say talentless Fox represents a call girl who is in love with Jonah Hex. The entire reason she is in the film is to attract the seedy man type that just wants to glimpse Fox in a corset and brazier. Fox irritates the crap out of me, to put it bluntly. We don't need talentless mouth breathers cluttering up films when there is a rather large talent pool of women in Hollywood that can act without you wanting to slap them across the head. I guess in the long run it doesn't really matter, does it?
Starring: Josh Brolin, Megan Fox & John Malkovich
Director: Jimmy Hayward
Now Showing: in Local Theaters this Friday
MPAA Rating: PG-13
FREE DVD GIVEAWAY
We are doing a Free DVD Giveaway! If you are interested in a chance at winning a free copy of The Real McCoys: Season Four, Rem Kolhaas: A Kind of Architect, Bass Ackwards, or Red vs. Blue: The Blood Gulch Chronicles, it is really easy! All you have to do is send me an email at Filmlords@gmail.com. The subject line of the email should read DVD GIVEAWAY. In the body of the email, be sure to put your name, full mailing address and which DVD or Blu-ray you would like. Winners will be selected by random drawing. Best of luck!
The Closer: Season Five - Warner
The Southern drawl and mild exasperation are by now familiar to TV crime buffs: Kyra Sedgwick's steel-magnolia-with-a-badge, Deputy Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson. The fourth season of The Closer finds Sedgwick in super form, as the scattered, ditsy mama's girl with a weakness for junk food and a singular focus when it comes to getting perps to talk. Yet the strength of The Closer goes far beyond just Sedgwick, as formidable as she is. The ensemble cast is also stellar, and very human and believable. Johnson's fellow cops (among whom Johnson is, finally, one of the boys, albeit in frilly skirts) are fleshed-out and battle their own demons.
WAREHOUSE 13: Season One - Universal
After saving the life of the President, two top Secret Service agents find themselves abruptly transferred to Warehouse 13 — a massive, top-secret storage facility in the badlands of South Dakota that houses every strange artifact, mysterious relic, fantastical object and supernatural souvenir ever collected by the U.S. government. Now the pair — off-the-cuff Agent Pete Lattimer and by-the-book Agent Myka Bering — must chase down reports of supernatural and paranormal activity in search of new objects for their eccentric new boss, Artie Nielsen, to safeguard at the Warehouse. It’s a wildly entertaining adventure full of inventive gadgetry and thrilling action, and with all twelve Warehouse 13: Season One episodes cataloged and archived in this collectible three-disc set, now’s your chance to snag it, bag it and tag it!
LEAVE IT TO BEAVER: Complete Series - Shout Factory
This is a dream come true for fans of the classic Leave It To Beaver series. All six seasons of the series are included in this set. The set is completely remastered and looks outstanding! This is reason to celebrate for all the fans of this classic 1950's television series. Available at a great price, this set is for anyone and everyone that loved the show. Wholesome entertainment for the entire family, they simply don't make shows like this anymore. It will be a welcome addition to my classic television library.
AVATAR: The Last Airbender: Book One - Nickelodeon
But a shining exception would be the tale of the Avatar of all four elements, and to restore the balance in the world. "Avatar The Last Airbender - Book 1" serves as a solid first season to this series, with its colourful world, vivid action and complex characters. It may be aimed at kids, but it's a solid enough series to be enjoyed by any age. South Pole Water Tribe siblings Katara and Sokka stumble across a glowing iceberg, with a young Airbender boy named Aang (and his flying bison) sealed inside. All Airbenders were killed long ago by the Fire Nation -- and Aang is the Avatar who mysteriously vanished a century ago, and is the only hope against the Fire Nation. Unfortunately, a Fire Nation prince named Zuko has been wandering the world in search of Aang, and agrees to let the Water Tribe alone if Aang surrenders. Katara and Sokka manage to rescue their friend, and since Katara isn't experienced enough in water bending to teach Aang, they set out for the North Pole to find a water bending master -- with Zuko and his cruel rival Admiral Zhao in hot pursuit.
PARANORMAL COPS: Season One - A&E
Real life ghost busters in action, these Chicago area police officers protect the city by day and night as they put their investigative prowess to work. The officers work two jobs effectively as they investigate paranormal activities and haunts throughout the city. Modeled after shows of similar topics, those with ghostly interests are sure to take to this entertaining program. There are some extras included in the set.
THE CRAZIES - Anchor Bay
This 2010 remake of a somewhat obscure 1973 George Romero picture injects a mysterious virus into the water supply of a small Iowa town, and the consequences are predictable. The movie is called The Crazies, after all. So when local folk begin acting a mite peculiar, it just means they've gone to the well too often--literally. Borrowing the structure of Invasion of the Body Snatchers, the remake gets off to a clumsy start, but as the non infected rally around the sheriff (Timothy Olyphant) and his doctor wife (Radha Mitchell), the action becomes streamlined and reasonably inventive. Director Breck Eisner has a particular knack for finding ingenious ways of killing people, and he's been wise enough to hire respectable actors for the top-lined duties; along with Olyphant and Mitchell, there's also Joe Anderson as a loyal, amped-up deputy.
IT CAME FROM KUCHAR - Indiepix
It Came from Kuchar includes numerous clips from the Kuchar brother's early films including Hold Me While I'm Naked, Sins of the Fleshapoids, and many others. It also features interviews of many of the filmmakers, artists and writers who've been inspired by the Kuchars. The film also features interviews of key actors from the Kuchars' films, ranging from the earliest days in the Bronx through today. For close to forty years George has taught film production at the San Francisco Art Institute. His class is unbelievable in a circus-like, Fellini-esque style that generates tremendous enthusiasm from his students. It Came From Kuchar follows his latest class production as they make an over-the-top monster picture.
THE 13 GHOSTS OF SCOOBY DOO: Complete Series - Warner
Even though the 13 Ghosts of Scooby Doo may not have been the favorite of many within the Scooby Doo franchise, it definitely deserved a DVD release. Many poo-poo the show because Velma and Fred aren't included, however there are a number of new characters along with the well known Scooby Doo, Shaggy, Scrappy, and Daphne. The new characters consist of Flim Flam and Vincent Van Ghoul who helped the gang with the job of solving the mysteries. The primary plot of the program is to collect the 13 ghosts that they were accidentally released from the Chest of Demons. While trying to do this two not so intelligent ghosts Weerd and Bogel get in the way and always tried to stop the gang but never really succeeded.
BLOOD ON THE HIGHWAY - E1 Entertainment
On their way to a rock concert, Carrie, her boyfriend Sam, and Bone, her thug ex-boyfriend, get lost and wind up in Fate, Texas – a town populated by bloodthirsty, dimwitted vampires. Featuring genre favorites Nicholas Brendon and Tom Towles. The casting is fantastic, the scripting is original and clever and the soundtrack is second-to-none.
THE LAST STATION: Blu-ray - Sony
Helen Mirren, Christopher Plummer, and James McAvoy lead an impeccable cast in The Last Station, a sweet comedy-drama about the final days of the Russian novelist Tolstoy. Nineteenth-century paparazzi lurk outside of Tolstoy's estate, hoping to snatch a picture of the rumored strife between the world-famous writer (Plummer, The Insider), who's launched an anti materialist movement, and his aristocratic wife, Sofya (Mirren). Also lurking is Tolstoy's aide, Chertkov (Paul Giamatti), who despises Sofya and pushes to change Tolstoy's will to prevent Sofya from inheriting the royalties from Tolstoy's books.
THE THREE STOOGES: Volume Eight - Sony
The 32 shorts featured in volume 8 of the Three Stooges Collection mark the final days of the comedy act's tenure at Columbia prior to their revival in the late 1950s, as well as the last appearances of original Stooge Shemp Howard and his short-lived replacement, comic Joe Besser. By 1952, Columbia had drastically reduced its short-subject division, which forced the Stooges' best director, Edward Bernds, to depart from the studio. Jules White was left in charge of the final shorts, which were further compromised by a reliance on recycling footage from older shorts as a cost-cutting measure. The death of Shemp Howard in 1955 brought the curtain down on the original Stooge lineup; the final short to feature new Shemp footage, 1956's "For Crimin' Out Loud," is included on the set's second disc, as are the infamous quartet featuring actor Joe Palma as a stand-in Shemp in linking footage. The latter are the source of much debate among Stoogephiles, as is the tenure of Joe Besser as Shemp's replacement.
LET'S GROW: SAFETY FIRST - Lionsgate
The fun of learning continues in Let's Grow: Safety First – an all-new, safety-themed compilation starring Barney, Thomas & Friends, Bob the Builder, and Fireman Sam – hosted by Sean and Chica from Sprout, the 24-hour preschool channel. These heartwarming stories will inspire and entertain, while demonstrating valuable life lessons and important safety tips along the way. So grab your helmet, look both ways, buckle up and get ready to learn that safety comes first!
FAMILY GUY: Volume Eight - Fox
Family Guy keeps moving the taste-be-damned line. These episodes from season eight challenge viewers on all sorts of subject matter. Nothing is sacred here! The pop-culture references are as arcane, too. And the politically incorrect jokes can be jaw-droppingly wrong. How does a series on Fox get away with some of these jokes? The bottom line is that Family Guy is hilarious even when you shouldn't laugh. Who cares? Comedy perfection - inquire within!
AMERICAN DAD: Volume 15 - Fox
American Dad. has become somewhat of a toon in a place all it's own as of late. By this I mean it has managed to establish itself as clearly not the Family Guy and that is what separates it from the rest of the funny/misunderstood/over exaggerated characters in a pretty simple environment yet unusual circumstances that allows hilarity to ensue. Stan, his dim-witted narcissism is a case in point he's over exaggerated in that respect, this is what gives him his self assured holier then thou bigger then life nature/personality. The show is both fresh and funny. Check it out!
UNTHINKABLE - Sony
Unthinkable will give people of all political persuasions plenty to argue about. A terrorist named Arthur Younger (Michael Sheen) has planted nuclear bombs in three American cities, then allowed himself to be arrested. The government, desperate to find these bombs, turns Younger over to a man known only as H (Samuel L. Jackson), who will use any means to extract information from Younger, despite the protests of FBI agent Helen Brody (Carrie-Anne Moss), who argues that torture doesn't produce viable data. Though Unthinkable is driven by this debate, the plot moves forward successfully, never getting bogged down in rhetoric, and it carefully grounds this fantasy scenario in realistic textures and details. It helps that the cast is crammed with talented characters actors, including Martin Donovan, Stephen Root, and a lot of faces you'll recognize, even if you don't know their names.
CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS - Sony
Judi and Ron Barrett's Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is a much-loved, whimsical book about a tiny island where food falls from the sky like rain. The book serves as a jumping-off point for Sony's animated, digital 3-D Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs which is not so much a retelling of the book as an exploration of what makes food rain from the sky on a small island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Flint (Bill Hader), a clever young inventor with a reputation for creations gone awry, has recently completed a machine that he claims will turn water into food. Like his past failed inventions, Flint's new food-converting machine doesn't work as planned, and on its initial test run it ends up getting launched into the sky where clouds form and begin to rain cheeseburgers. The falling burgers destroy the Swallow Falls community's latest attempt to bolster its failing, sardine-dependent economy, but the Mayor's (Bruce Campbell) initial fury quickly turns to greedy anticipation as he begins to realize that food falling from the sky could serve as an innovative tourist draw. The story take off from there. Available in the brilliant Blu-ray 3D format, you will be amazed and in awe of the clarity and brilliance of this presentation!