This Week in Blu-ray / DVD Releases: Straight Outta Compton, Everest

This Week: Cruising Compton for summer's biggest shocker, man vs. mountain in Everest, and two movies with very different teenaged angst.

► The biggest surprise of last summer wasn’t what flopped, but the stunning box office of the N.W.A. bio STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON. With Ice Cube, Dr. Dre and Eazy-E’s widow among the producers (not to mention Cube’s own son playing his dad), this one’s as gritty as N.W.A.’s groundbreaking 1988 album which brought gangsta rap into the mainstream. F. Gary Gray’s fascinating flick opens with a bad drug deal, and follows the group through its volatile stardom to the L.A. riots to Eazy-E’s death from AIDS. Despite its impact, it only scored one Oscar nomination, for Original Screenplay. Director’s Cut blu-ray includes an additional 20 minutes, an N.W.A. performance in Detroit, commentary from Gray, and a look at revisiting the streets of Compton for filming.

► I question the sanity of anyone who wants to climb mountains. And yet, I love watching movies about the people who try. Even ones based on true stories that end badly. EVEREST is a frost-covered nightmare, based on a 1996 expedition in which (spoiler alert) a bunch of people died. The kicker? They had reached the summit – the misery starts when a blizzard hits while they’re descending. The same story is told in Jon Krakauer’s classic book ‘Into Thin Air.’ Jason Clarke, Josh Brolin, Keira Knightley and Jake Gyllenhaal star.

► Marielle Heller’s THE DIARY OF A TEENAGE GIRL was one of last year’s sweet surprises, a blunt coming-of-age tale about a 15-year-old girl (an astoundingly good Bel Powley) who starts an affair with her mom’s boyfriend (Alexander Skarsgard). Kristen Wiig plays the mom who suspects something’s up. Set in 1976, Heller brilliantly captures the vibe of the decade while tackling her subject matter in funny, frank fashion. Where I live, a winery of all places refused to screen this movie during last year’s Niagara Film Festival because of its content. So many impressionable kids at a winery.

► Season 1 of SyFy’s 12 MONKEYS is offered as a “reimagining” of the classic 1995 flick as opposed to a straight-up remake, influenced as much by ‘Looper.’ It has Aaron Stanford in the Bruce Willis role, as a time traveler from 2043 trying to prevent the spread of a virus that’ll wipe out more then 90% of the world’s population. Amanda Schull is the virologist who comes around to his conspiracies. Renewed for a second season which starts April 18.

► Based on the ‘80s animated show, JEM AND THE HOLGRAMS will ultimately be remembered for its historically awful box office. It pulled in $1.4 million its opening weekend, the worst for 2015 and fourth worst ever for a movie showing in at least 2,000 theatres. It was yanked just two weeks later, and did no better overseas. A big reason it couldn’t even recoup its flimsy $5 million budget is that it’s a miserable mess of a musical about a small-town girl (Aubrey Peeples) who takes on the secret identity of a music superstar.

► Colin Hanks directs ALL THINGS MUST PASS, a look at the rise and painful collapse of Tower Records. Music piracy wasn’t the only reason – mismanagement and bankruptcy from over-expansion in the ‘90s sped up its demise. This’ll make you weepy for a time when music was something you browsed and felt and listened to in a store, something on the verge of disappearing forever. Even my local Best Buy doesn’t sell CDs any more. Bruce Springsteen, Elton John and Dave Grohl offer insights. Manufactured on demand through Amazon.

► In addition to a whole whack of individual seasons of ‘Baywatch’ being released Friday, we get the immortal spin-off BAYWATCH NIGHTS. Made at the height of X-Files mania, it has beefy lifeguard Mitch (David Hasselhoff) moonlighting as a detective. The weird stuff starts in Season 2 when producers desperately turned it into a straight-up rip-off of ‘The X-Files,’ pitting The Hoff against monsters, ghosts and aliens. It was promptly cancelled, but not before earning its place as one of the most ridiculous network shows ever.

► WWE’s action movie formula: Get one of your ‘A’ stars for the first flick, then when he leaves the company, pluck someone else for the sequel. Eight years after the original with Stone Cold Steve Austin, THE CONDEMNED 2 has Randy Orton as a bounty hunter who finds himself part of a new Condemned tournament, in which bad guys are forced to fight to the death for a televised game. Eric Roberts and Wes Studi co-star.

Also out this week:




Source: JoBlo.com



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