This Week’s DVD Releases
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2
Mockingjay Part 2, The Hunger Games is grim, but it is an exciting, poignant, and satisfying end. Rottentomatoes critics rated it 6.5 out of 10, and out of 234 reviews, 164 rated it “fresh” – that is 70%. The other 70 didn’t like it. But what do the critics know? Out of 195,428 real people, 98% said they want to see it!
A Homesick immigrant adjusts to the U.S. in this bittersweet romance drama. Rated PG-13 for brief profanity and a sex scene, this film is Excellent (4 stars). Distributed by Fox Searchlight Pictures, it runs over 111 minutes.
Midwinter of the Spirit
Up the Wrong Tree
Up The Wrong Tree was nominated for 5 Israeli Academy Awards. They include Best Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Cinematography, Best Editing and Best Casting.
Nitzan, or Nitz as he is often known, returns to Israel from Australia. He wants to get his girlfriend Kesem back, after having abandoned her. He also wants Zorba, their old dog. She refuses, but she does allow him to have a relationship with the dog.
Since he married Sarah, played by Linda Cardellini, Brad, played by Will Ferrell has been a model stepfather. He lavishes attention on her children all the time. He picks them up from school, coaches their Little League team, offers a shoulder to cry on if they are bullied, and tucks them in at bedtime. To say the children do not reciprocate would be putting it mildly.
Daddy’s Home is a dysfunctional family comedy which basically pits a nerdy nice guy versus a bad boy alpha male. Brad is the 100% opposite of their biological dad, Dusty, played by Mark Wahlberg. Dusty is an unreliable narcissistic hunk who was rarely around to attend a school function or help with homework. The hunk comes back and decides to compete with Brad for the attention of both his kids and his ex.
Distributed by Paramount Pictures, Daddy’s Home is very good (3 stars). It is Rated PG-13 for profanity, crude humor, suggestive material and mature themes, and runs over 96 minutes.
Other critics didn’t think much of Daddy’s Home, giving it a 70% rotten rating at RottenTomatoes, but 93% of readers said they want to see it.
The Letters is a reverential biopic that chronicled the life and times of Mother Teresa, played by Juliet Stevenson. The movie title comed from a long 50-year exchange of intimate letters with her confidant and spiritual adviser, Father Celeste van Exem, played here by Max von Sydow.
Not exactly an epic, critics rated it 30% out of 33 reviews, but the people who said they saw it also said they liked it. It grossed $700,000 on the opening weekend and $1.6 million overall.
The Letters is good (2 stars), and is rated PG for mature themes. Distributed by Freestyle Releasing, it runs for 118 minutes.