This Week in Blu-ray / DVD Releases: Robocop, Lone Survivor, True Blood
This week: Would you buy the new 'Robocop' for a dollar? Also: In the jungle with 'Lone Survivor,' and the season 'True Blood' sucked beyond saving.
► Few movies were set up to fail worse this year than the remake of ROBOCOP. Announcing it would be PG-13 was a witless insult to fans that made the original such a classic. Even in ’87, ‘Robocop’ wasn’t a hit – it was years of love that gathered for its gonzo, don’t-give-a-shit attitude which built its following. This dry-as-sandpaper remake can serve up an action scene, but drops the satire and demented humor which offset all that hardcore violence of the original. We’ve already had watered-down Robocop…it was called ‘Robocop 3’ and no one gave a shit. We can only imagine the movie Darren Aronofsky would have made had he stayed on as director. Probably still a bomb, but one far more memorable than this.
► Peter Berg sure put ‘Battleship’ in his rearview mirror with the potent LONE SURVIVOR. Based on the true story of four Navy SEALS on a mission in Afghanistan to take down a Taliban leader. When they’re discovered by goat herders, they let them go instead of facing the backlash of killing them. They’re soon ambushed by Taliban forces, and are hunted as they try to alert the base of their location. Mark Wahlberg, Emile Hirsch, Taylor Kitsch and Ben Foster star in this bloody and heroic footnote to the war.
► Oh TRUE BLOOD, I wish I could care about your upcoming final season, but you lost me well before Season 6 ended. Any hopes the departure of show creator Alan Ball would improve things was quickly dismissed with the most asinine clump of episodes yet. Now a full-fledged campy soap opera, Sookie tries to evade a creature called Warlow with the help of her dead relatives, Bill gains new powers and is somehow more boring, and the governor declares open season on vamps. The silliness resulted in the show’s worst ratings since Season 1. This was once HBO’s crown jewel show, now it’s overstaying its welcome like ‘Dexter.’
► If you had plans to scoop the BREAKING BAD: THE COMPLETE SERIES edition that came out in the money barrel set last year, that sucker’s out-of-print and selling for upwards of $400 on eBay. As consolation, here’s everything that set had in a package you can actually put on your shelf for $100. The show itself is a masterpiece, the bonus stuff is epic (including a two hour documentary on making the final eight episodes), and the rewatchability obvious. All 62 uncut episodes. Let the binging begin again.
► It is positively painful watching Gina Carano try to act. And maybe that isn’t important in generic B movies like IN THE BLOOD, where she plays a woman with a lousy upbringing whose new husband vanishes during their Caribbean honeymoon. But Carano has such screen presence, you get the feeling she’s this close to being a major action star instead of just a female Steven Seagal. Co-stars Luis Guzman and (of course) Danny Trejo.
► The eighth and final season of RAWHIDE is pretty much a disaster with star Eric Flemming departing after a beef with producers, and Clint Eastwood finally bumped up as trail boss. The show never mentions Flemming’s character, or what became of him, which was the first sign to fans things were amiss. New cast members never caught on and the show was cancelled mid-season after just 13 episodes. And no one ever heard from Eastwood again.
► These are troubled times for ABC when PRETTY LITTLE LIARS is considered one of its flagship shows. Though the spin-off ‘Ravenswood’ was a disaster last year, the original show is still ABC Family’s biggest hit. Based on Sara Shepard’s books, it follows four divas who get ominous messages from someone named ‘A” after the leader of their clique goes missing. Season 5 starts June 10.
► Based on Willy Vlautin’s novel, THE MOTEL LIFE follows two brothers (Emile Hirsch and Stephen Dorff) who can only cope with their crappy lives through their stories and illustrations. When one of them kills a kid on a bike in a hit and run, they flee town to the home of an ex-girlfriend (Dakota Fanning). Bleak stuff with possibly career-best work from Hirsch and Dorff.
Also out this week:
SO WHAT DVD/BLU-RAYS ARE YOU GUYS STOKED ABOUT THIS WEEK?!