BLU-RAY MOVIE REVIEWS

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David Vaughn  |  Mar 04, 2009  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/primal.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>Ambitious and famed defense lawyer Martin Vail (Richard Gere) volunteers his services to Aaron Stampler (Edward Norton), a Kentucky teenager charged with the murder of a Chicago archbishop. Vail uncovers evidence that the archbishop was involved in a corrupt land scheme and may have molested young parishioners. The case is further complicated by a psychologist's diagnosis that Stampler suffers from multiple personality disorder.

Mike Mettler  |  Jan 20, 2017  |  0 comments
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When Prince passed away from an accidental overdose of fentanyl this past April, multiple generations bonded over their mutual appreciation of his one-man empire of sonic creativity, quirky yet influential style, and overall mystique. In the wake of all this new and renewed interest in the Purple One, Warner has remastered his only three starring roles for high-def Blu-ray release via the simply titled Prince Movie Collection.
David Vaughn  |  Sep 14, 2010  |  0 comments
It's a race against time when a rogue prince (Jake Gyllenhaal) reluctantly teams up with a rival princess (Gemma Arterton) to safeguard a magical dagger that gives its possessor the power to reverse time and rule the world.

Adapting a video game into a feature film is a challenging task, but producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director Mike Newell actually pull it off here. Sure, the story isn't very thought-provoking, but there's plenty of action and enough comic relief from Alfred Molina to entertain the family for a couple of hours. The demo-worthy DTS-HD MA soundtrack features everything you'd want from an action movie—impressive dynamics, ample bass, and 360-degree envelopment.

Anthony Chiarella  |  Jun 04, 2014  |  1 comments
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When six-year-old Anna Dover and her neighbor disappear, father Keller (Hugh Jackman) tramples the law to find her. While Detective Loki (Jake Gyllenhaal) methodically investigates, the impatient Keller kidnaps his daughter’s alleged kidnapper and attempts to extract a confession through torture. Prisoners is a perfectly paced psycho-drama that engrosses and rewards its audience.
David Vaughn  |  Oct 18, 2010  |  0 comments
A wayward traveler (Janet Leigh) comes upon the Bates Motel and makes the fatal decision of stopping for the evening and partaking in a shower. In one of the most memorable scenes in Hollywood history, she's sliced and diced by a mysterious psychopath (Anthony Perkins).

The Master of Suspense, Alfred Hitchcock, lulls his audience into a state of comfort throughout the first act of the film only to shock them with the famous shower scene and then slowly unwind the mystery over the last hour. I'm generally not a fan of horror films, but I've seen Psycho countless times over the years and Norman Bates still sends a chill down my spine. One thing's for sure, Hitchcock certainly knew how to keep an audience on the edge of their seat.

David Vaughn  |  Dec 07, 2009  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/pubem.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>John Dillinger (Johnny Depp) is one of the most infamous gangsters in American history. The charismatic bank robber and his gang robbed countless banks during the Great Depression and he became a folk hero to the downtrodden public who had no sympathy for the banks that had plunged the country into the economic abyss. J. Edgar Hoover (Billy Crudup) proclaimed Dillinger Public Enemy Number One and sent his best agent, Melvin Purvis (Christian Bale), to bring him down.

Fred Kaplan  |  Mar 24, 2017  |  0 comments
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I was thrilled with Punch-Drunk Love when it came out: such loopy energy, zigzag surprises, so preposterous but insouciantly so oddly appealing—a mess but a dazzling mess, like most of P.T. Anderson’s movies. A decade-and-a-half later, it’s lost a lot of its punch. I don’t know if I’ve changed, if imitations have sucked out its novelty, or what, but its shortcomings now shine too clearly. Adam Sandler plays a plumbing-parts salesman who’s out on the spectrum (a bit of Benjamin Braddock crossed with Rain Man), who’s never traveled or had a girlfriend, who’s always been tormented by seven playful sisters who don’t know the madness they’re inflicting.
Kris Deering  |  Jul 09, 2009  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/push.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT><i>Hang on tight as a gang of super-powered paranormal operatives takes you on a white-knuckle thrill ride. The excitement starts when a future-seeing Watcher (Dakota Fanning) convinces a telekinetic Mover (Chris Evans) to help steal a briefcase that holds a billion-dollar secret. But to outrun government agents, they must enlist a mind controlling Pusher (Camilla Belle) who could be their salvation - or their doom.</I>

David Vaughn  |  Mar 26, 2009  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/quantum.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>Picking up shortly after the end of <i>Casino Royale</i>, Bond (Daniel Craig) pursues those responsible for killing the woman he loved. The quest leads him to a mysterious criminal organization known as Quantum and one of its members, Dominic Greene (Mathieu Amalric), an environmentalist who brokers the overthrow of a South American country in exchange for the world's most valuable resource. Along the way, he partners with hottie Camille (Olga Kurylenko), who's in search of her own vengeance.

Corey Gunnestad  |  Feb 12, 2014  |  0 comments
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Watching R.I.P.D., you might experience a profound sense of déjà vu. You may find yourself saying, “Hey, I’ve seen this before, only it was called Men in Black and it had Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones in it.” The RIPD is a secret special service branch of the afterlife whose primary task is to track down and terminate other “deados” who hide out in the real world and refuse to cross over. Yes, apparently it’s possible to kill someone who’s already dead.
David Vaughn  |  Apr 29, 2011  |  0 comments
Becca (Nicole Kidman) and Howie (Aaron Eckhart) are returning to their everyday existence in the wake of a shocking, sudden loss. Just eight months ago, they were a happy suburban family with everything they wanted. Now, they are only posing as normal, blindly looking for footing in a sea of new emotions after the loss of their young child.

Adapted from David Lindsay Abaire's Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Rabbit Hole is one of the more disturbing films I've watched in a long time. It hit home with my wife and I since one of our friends lost a child last year and we've seen firsthand how difficult it can be for a young couple to put their lives back together after such a devastating loss. Kidman certainly deserved her Oscar nomination for her gripping performance as the emotionally strapped mother, but this certainly isn't a pick-me-up by any stretch.

David Vaughn  |  Aug 02, 2009  |  0 comments

<IMG SRC="/images/archivesart/racewitch.jpg" WIDTH=200 BORDER=0 ALIGN=RIGHT>Las Vegas taxi driver Jack Bruno (Dwayne Johnson) sets off on the adventure of a lifetime when two mysterious teens ask him to drive them deep into the Nevada desert. But his young passengers are no ordinary teens&#151;siblings Sara (AnnaSophia Robb) and Seth (Alexander Ludwig) are aliens from another universe with astonishing supernatural abilities. Jack becomes a reluctant hero as he expertly evades the authorities while trying to infiltrate Witch Mountain, a shadowy government outpost devoted to studying UFOs.

David Vaughn  |  Jul 15, 2011  |  0 comments
It's the classic fish out of water tale of Rango, a family pet lost in the desert who must learn to survive on his own in the desolate environment. The hapless chameleon travels to the dusty town of Dirt, where water is in short supply and the townsfolk are desperate for a hero. The aspiring thespian puts on the show of his life until the local thugs show up to make trouble he soon realizes he's in over his head.

Although the first act seems to drag on forever, the story picks up steam in the second and builds up to a thrilling and satisfying conclusion. Johnny Depp voices the main character, but it's the absolutely incredible animation that steals the show and ILM deserves massive kudos for delivering the best looking presentation I've seen on Blu-ray. Yes folks, it's that good.

David Vaughn  |  Feb 06, 2011  |  0 comments
A remarkable story about one of America's great entertainers, Ray Charles (Jamie Foxx). From his humble beginnings in the South through his meteoric rise to the top of the American music charts, Charles overcame many obstacles to become a music icon.

I'd always had been a fan of Charles' music throughout the years, but it wasn't until I saw this biopic in 2004 that I realized how high a mountain he had climbed to become a success. He never wanted any special treatment because of his blindness, but his stubbornness led him to drug addiction like so many other entertainers.

David Vaughn  |  Jan 26, 2012  |  0 comments

Robots have been all the rage in Hollywood over the past few years with Michael Bay's popular Transformers trilogy. I haven't been a big fan of any of those films, but I have to say that each has been an audio and visual treat on Blu-ray. Well, here comes another robot movie, but unlike the aforementioned garbage, there's actually a plot (though hardly original), good acting, and a lot a heart. What it does have in common with the Bay films is a reference-quality presentation with exquisite detail in the video encode and some of the most intense bass you'll ever experience in your home theater.

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