New to DVD and On Demand Releases for November 12 - 18

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10 November 2017
VIEW FROM THE COUCH
By Jay Bobbin Zap2it
(Ratings for each film begin with a "star'' rating -- one star meaning "poor,'' four meaning "excellent'' -- followed by the Motion Picture Association of America rating, and then by a family-viewing guide, the key for which appears below.)

 
Releasing this Week:
 
Atomic Blonde"Atomic Blonde":  Charlize Theron has proven herself to be game for tough screen duty before -- "Mad Max: Fury Road'' standing as a towering example -- and she ventures into such territory again, at a fairly breathless clip, in this action tale based on a graphic novel. She plays a Cold War-era MI6 operative who gets very physical and lethal toward her enemies while trying to recover a list that would reveal the true identities of undercover agents. The true showstopper of a scene, superbly handled by stuntman-turned-director David Leitch, is a battle that unfolds up and down an apartment-building staircase. James McAvoy and Sofia Boutella ("The Mummy'') play other spies she encounters, with John Goodman and Toby Jones as her superiors ... but the real star here may be Theron's physical trainer. *** (R: AS, N, P, V) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)
Wind River"Wind River":  An FBI rookie and a tracker, played by Elizabeth Olsen and Jeremy Renner, work together to probe a murder on a reservation in writer-director Taylor Sheridan's ("Hell or High Water'') tense and well-played melodrama. The collaboration isn't always easy, since different parties have different agendas, and there also are tribal rules and customs to be observed -- and some of the supposed good guys aren't necessarily good. The Wyoming locations do much for the film, essentially making the atmosphere a separate character. Gil Birmingham ("Twilight''), Graham Greene and Jon Bernthal ("The Walking Dead'') also star. *** (R: AS, P, V) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)
Unlocked"Unlocked":  It's a big week for female spies on home video, as Noomi Rapace -- the screen's original "Girl With the Dragon Tattoo'' -- plays a CIA agent who refrains from the front lines after a mission goes awry in Paris. Posing as a social worker in England, she learns terrorists are planning a biological attack, sending her back into action with a supposedly reformed thief (Orlando Bloom) as an ally. Directed by Michael Apted, who also handled one of James Bond's missions ("The World Is Not Enough''), the picture has a familiar feel but a top-notch cast ... also including Michael Douglas and John Malkovich as the heroine's bosses, and Toni Collette as her British counterpart. *** (R: AS, P, V) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)


Also Releasing this Week:

24 Legacy"24 Legacy":  Though Kiefer Sutherland had moved on to "Designated Survivor,'' the franchise he did much to establish continued with this Fox series, retaining many trademarks including an on-screen digital clock and a cinema-verite filming style. Corey Hawkins ("Straight Outta Compton'') plays this edition's hero, a military veteran who works with the counterterrorism agency CTU when he's targeted by vengeful foreign terrorists who have followed him back to his home turf. Miranda Otto also stars as a CTU veteran whose husband (Jimmy Smits) is a presidential candidate, with recent "This Is Us'' Emmy winner Gerald McRaney as his father and Carlos Bernard back in his original "24'' role as ex-agent turned enemy Tony Almeida. *** (Not rated: AS, P, V)
"Agatha Chrisite's Poirot: Murder on the Orient Express":  With a new version of the classic mystery now in theaters, this excellent made-for-TV edition of the tale puts David Suchet's much-praised portrayal of detective Hercule Poirot in the center of the investigation aboard the legendary title train. Convinced that his life is in danger, a businessman tries to hire Poirot to stop the threat -- but the sleuth refuses, and the man is killed later. Poirot then takes up a probe of the passengers, with Jessica Chastain, Hugh Bonneville ("Downton Abbey''), Barbara Hershey, Toby Jones and Eileen Atkins among those playing suspects. *** (Not rated: AS, V) (Also on Blu-ray)
"Marah Carey's All I Want for Christmas is You":  One of the holiday season's peppiest song standards is the inspiration for this animated feature, for which Carey serves as narrator and performs you-know-which-tune, along with three others (including one written specifically for the film). The story revolves around a youngster (voice of Breanna Yde) who wants a particular dog as a holiday gift, but she has to prove first that she's up to the responsibility by tending to her uncle's rascally canine. Henry Winkler, Lacey Chabert (who was directed by Carey in the TV movie "A Christmas Melody''), Phil Morris and Keiko Agena ("Gilmore Girls'') also are in the voice cast, on which Carey is an executive producer as well. DVD extra: "making-of'' documentary, *** (G) (Also on Blu-ray)


Upcoming Releases:

"The Hitman's Bodyguard" (Nov. 21): Samuel L. Jackson plays an assassin who needs a longtime nemesis (Ryan Reynolds) as his protector. (R: P, V)
"Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets" (Nov. 21): In director Luc Besson's fantasy-adventure, a futuristic law enforcer (Dane DeHaan) tries to keep a metropolis -- and the whole universe -- together. (PG-13: AS, P, V)
"Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life" (Nov. 28): Changes in seasons mean changes for Lorelai and Rory (Lauren Graham, Alexis Bledel) in this sequel miniseries. (Not rated: AS, P)
"Logan Lucky" (Nov. 28): Brothers (Channing Tatum, Adam Driver) break a convict (Daniel Craig) out of prison to help in their planned speedway heist. (PG-13: AS, P)
"The Defiant Ones" (Nov. 28): The Allen Hughes-directed HBO documentary miniseries traces the work, separately and together, of music-industry icons Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine. (Not rated: AS, P)
"Despicable Me 3" (Dec. 5): A gone-soft Gru (voice of Steve Carell) gets his "despicable'' mojo back thanks to the twin he didn't know he had. (PG: AS)


Oldies But Goodies:

"The Incredible Shrinking Woman" (1981): Lily Tomlin has the title role in this sci-fi satire, making its Blu-ray debut, about ... well, check the title again. ***
"Monster" (2003): Charlize Theron won an Oscar for director Patty Jenkins' ("Wonder Woman'') drama based on serial killer Aileen Wuornos. ****
"Road to Morocco" (1942): One of the best comedies to team Hope and Bing Crosby is among the 21 films in the new ``Bob Hope: The Ultimate Movie Collection.'' ***


TOP 10 DVD & Blu-Ray Rentals
(Week ending October 29, 2017, Courtesy of 
comScore)

1)  "Spider-Man: Homecoming
"
2)  "
The Mummy"
3)  "
The House"
4)  "
Baby Driver"
5)  "
Wonder Woman"
6)  "
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales"
7)  "The Emoji Movie
"
8)  "
Transformers: The Last Knight"
9)  "
Annabelle: Creation"
10)  "
War for the Planet of the Apes"

FAMILY VIEWING GUIDE KEY: AS, adult situations; N, nudity; P, profanity; V, violence; GV, particularly graphic violence
 
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