This Week in Blu-ray / DVD Releases: Night at the Museum 3, Wolfcop …

This Week: A limp week for new releases serves up a third Night at the Museum, but some classic John Hughes and vintage German horror should help.

► As if the thought of a third ‘Night at the Museum’ movie wasn’t depressing enough, NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM: SECRET OF THE TOMB would also mark Robin Williams’ last movie and Mickey Rooney’s second last movie. It’s dedicated to both of them, which is about the only noble thing this tired cash grab offers. Squeezing the last drop out of a formula already dry by the first sequel, the tablet which brings history to life every night starts going wonky, forcing night watchman Ben Stiller to go to England where a former nemesis (Dick Van Dyke) has the answers. Hugh Jackman makes an uncredited cameo as himself. Anemic box office erased all doubt this is the last one.

► I’d like to tell you WOLFCOP is the symbolic title for an artsy genre flick – kind of like ‘Black Swan’ wasn’t really about a friggin’ black swan – but, uh, no. Canadian horror comedy has Leo Fafrad as a small town cop who wakes up one morning with a pentagram carved in his chest and wolfy tendencies. Unlike his distant cousin, Teen Wolf, he isn’t interested in basketball – he has bad guys to catch. From ‘13 Earie’ director Lowell Dean.

► Probably the most iconic of all John Hughes’ movies, THE BREAKFAST CLUB turns 30 with an anniversary edition blu-ray which includes commentary by Judd Nelson and Anthony Michael Hall, a look at the origins of The Brat Pack, and a trivia track. ‘Ferris Bueller’ may be Hughes’ most ageless and universal movie, but this dug deeper than most – certainly with its language and themes – and its cast was pitch perfect. One of those movies you can see as a teen, and as a jaded adult, and enjoy for constantly shifting reasons. For another $8 or so, you can also get it as part of the JOHN HUGHES YEARBOOK COLLECTION, which includes ‘Sixteen Candles’ and ‘Weird Science’ with all the fixins.’

► One of SyFy’s Halloween offerings last year, DARK HAUL has Tom Sizemore leading a group of guardians transporting a winged creature and its half-human sister to a secure location in an 18-wheeler. Of course, no truck has ever survived a horror movie, so it escapes and makes plans to fulfill its prophecy of screwing the world up. I wonder what Sizemore does when he stumbles across ‘Saving Private Ryan’ while flipping through the stations. Does he even recognize that actor any more?

► A box office dud with lousy reviews when it opened in 1964 (booed at Cannes!), Francois Truffaut’s THE SOFT SKIN is one of the hidden gems in a career which defined French new wave cinema. His fourth film – five years after the classic ‘The 400 Blows’ – follows a well-known writer (Jean Desailly) who hooks up with an air hostess while in Lisbon. Their tryst doesn’t go over well with his wife, setting up a jarringly grim ending. Criterion Collection blu-ray includes a documentary on Truffaut, a vintage 1965 Truffaut interview, and new video essay by filmmaker and critic Kent Jones.

► The Spanish-Venezuelan THE LIBERATOR stars Edgar Ramirez as Simon Bolivar, the Latin America folk hero who fought for independence from Spain. By the time he checked out, he had fought more than 100 battles, rode more than 70,000 miles on horseback, and avoided assassination thanks to his lover, whom he described as his “Liberatrix” (awesome name for a band, BTW).

► Not to be confused with the Jeanne Crain version (1949) or the Lauren Bacall version (1981) or the Robert De Niro version (1996), director Eckhardt Schmidt’s THE FAN from 1982 finally hits blu-ray thanks to cult label Mondo Macabro. The German thriller has Desiree Nosbusch as a teen who passes out when she meets the pop star she’s obsessed with. When that love isn’t returned, she plans to get his attention in less-than-pleasant ways. Blu-ray includes the original German audio and interview with Schmidt.

Also out this week:





About the Author

238 Articles Published