Susan Granger’s DVD Update for week of June 7:
As a Florida con artist, Melissa McCarthy scams a Denver accountant, played by Jason Bateman, in
“Identity Thief,” maxing out his credit cards and tainting his good name,
turning cyber-crime into cinematic chaos.
Bruce Willis is back for the fifth time as durable New York detective John McLane, traveling to Moscow to help is estranged son in the dumbed-down, heavy-handed “A Good Day to Die Hard.”
Suburbanites, including Julia Stiles, America Ferrera and David Cross, get together to gossip
and fight in Todd Berger’s broadly drawn, dark comedy “It’s a Disaster,” facing the apocalypse in the form of nerve-gas attack on Los Angeles, while Keanu Reeves plays a mopey driver for a New York escort service in the forgettable, low-budget “Generation Um…”
“Mental” is a hyperkinetic farce that reunites Australian director P.J. Hogan with Toni Collette, who plays a dope-smoking, knife-carrying nanny hired by the Mayor (Anthony LaPaglia) of Dolphin Heads, a coastal town in Queensland, to care for his five teenage daughters – all of whom think they have mental illness.
“The Last Ride” imagines Hank Williams’ final days with Henry Thomas (who played the child in
“E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial”) as the iconic country music superstar who became a cynical addict. And Deborah Anderson’s “Aroused” gets up close and personal with 16 of the most successful women in the adult film industry.
For family viewing, there’s the animated “Escape from Planet Earth,” a serviceable, sci-fi, escapist diversion, teaching teamwork and preaching family loyalty and love.
For film buffs, “Perfect Understanding” is a rediscovered 1933 Ealing Studios comedy, starring
Gloria Swanson and Laurence Olivier with a screenplay by Michael Powell. There are two, new comprehensive Clint Eastwood collections, along with Mel Gibson’s “Max Max Trilogy’ on Blu-Ray.
For foreign film aficionados, “2+2” in Spanish with English subtitles is the most successful
comedy of all time in Argentina, revolving around swinging suburban couples.
PICK OF THE WEEK: Strangely sentimental, “Warm Bodies” adapts Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” with a zombie twist. Set in a post-apocalyptic world, it’s a paranormal romantic comedy in which heart, humor and the human connection conquer everything, even death.