VIDEO ROOM

Video Room has been serving the Piedmont Avenue neighborhood since 1988. We carry a large selection of movies on DVD and have an ever growing Blu-ray library. We specialize in hard-to-find and obscure cult classics, TV shows, foreign cinema, and film noir, in addition to the latest new releases. Check out our large Directors section and offbeat categories that make us unique. Kids and dogs are welcome. Senior discounts available. We do same day reservations. Free parking.

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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

New Releases - August 20, 2013

Blu-rays:

Amour [The 2013 winner for the Best Foreign Film Oscar has finally been released on Blu-ray and DVD. Michael Haneke (The Piano Teacher, Funny Games) directed this studied but moving and eventually cathartic drama starring Emmanuelle Riva (Hiroshima, Mon Amour) and Jean-Louis Tritignant (Z, The Conformist) as retired music professors who have been married for many decades. When Riva suffers a debilitating stroke, Tritignant accepts her affliction with devoted resignation as her loving caregiver, but no one knows the emotional devastation he harbors under his stoic demeanor. Nominated for 5 Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Riva for Best Actress, this was one of the best reviewed films of the year, having appeared on dozens of Top Ten lists. Riva and Tritignant both give the most amazing and subtle performances of their impressive careers. Recommended! In French with English subtitles. Also starring Isabelle Huppert, Alexandre Tharuad and Michael Shimell. 2012. Rated PG-13. 127 minutes.]

Epic [This stunningly beautiful and genuinely funny family animated film is one of those rarities that should appeal to both kids and adults equally, and it promotes appreciation of the forest and wildlife while entertaining to boot. Amanda Seyfried provides the voice of the teen heroine who is recruited by a nature spirit to help save the "Leafmen" and their existence, which in turn might save ours.  The all-star voice cast includes Colin Farrell, Josh Hutcherson, Aziz Ansari, BeyoncĂ© Knowles, Christoph Waltz, Chris O'Dowd, Jason Sudekis and Steven Tyler. Chris Wedge directed this eco-minded hit which is one of the best animated films of the year. Recommended!  2013. Rated PG. 103 minutes.]

Shadow Dancer [In this tense political thriller, Andrea Riseborough (Oblivion) stars as a single mother who is arrested in an aborted IRA plot in London and is convinced by MI-5 officer Clive Owen to spy on her own family, but things fall apart when her brother's radical operation is ambushed and she and her family find themselves in grave danger. Aidan Gillen, Domhnall Gleeson, Brid Brennan, Gillian Anderson and David Wilmut co-star. Directed by James Marsh. 2012. Rated R. 102 minutes.]    



DVDs:

Amour [The 2013 winner for the Best Foreign Film Oscar has finally been released on Blu-ray and DVD. Michael Haneke (The Piano Teacher, Funny Games) directed this studied but moving and eventually cathartic drama starring Emmanuelle Riva (Hiroshima, Mon Amour) and Jean-Louis Tritignant (Z, The Conformist) as retired music professors who have been married for many decades. When Riva suffers a debilitating stroke, Tritignant accepts her affliction with devoted resignation as her loving caregiver, but no one knows the emotional devastation he harbors under his stoic demeanor. Nominated for 5 Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Riva for Best Actress, this was one of the best reviewed films of the year, having appeared on dozens of Top Ten lists. Riva and Tritignant both give the most amazing and subtle performances of their impressive careers. Recommended! In French with English subtitles. Also starring Isabelle Huppert, Alexandre Tharuad and Michael Shimell. 2012. Rated PG-13. 127 minutes.]

Boardwalk Empire: Season 3 [The twisted machinations of Atlantic City circa 1924 continue in this hit HBO series as powerful bootlegger Steve Buscemi and encroaching mobster Bobby Cannavale go to war with each other while Buscemi's personal life remains as complicated and perverted as ever. Kelly Macdonald, Michael Shannon, Shea Whigham, Michael Stuhlbarg, Gretchen Mol and Charlie Cox also star. 2012. Unrated. 5 separate rentals.]

Epic [This stunningly beautiful and genuinely funny family animated film is one of those rarities that should appeal to both kids and adults equally, and it promotes appreciation of the forest and wildlife while entertaining to boot. Amanda Seyfried provides the voice of the teen heroine who is recruited by a nature spirit to help save the "Leafmen" and their existence, which in turn might save ours.  The all-star voice cast includes Colin Farrell, Josh Hutcherson, Aziz Ansari, BeyoncĂ© Knowles, Christoph Waltz, Chris O'Dowd, Jason Sudekis and Steven Tyler. Chris Wedge directed this eco-minded hit which is one of the best animated films of the year. Recommended!  2013. Rated PG. 103 minutes.]

Evidence [Complex and mind-boggling thriller starring Stephen Moyer and Radha Mitchell as detectives trying to figure out why five people were brutally murdered at a gas station in the desert. In an offbeat twist, their only clues to the puzzle are the found footage they have to pore over. Co-starring Caitlin Stasey, Torrey Devitto, Harry Lennix, Svetlana Metkina and Dale Dickey. Directed by Olatunde Osunsanmi. 2012. Unrated. 94 minutes.]

Good Wife, The: Season 4 [Although some fans criticized the wild, head-spinning turns this legal drama took this season, I take issue with that and think it actually is one of their best seasons. Juliana Margulies returns and gives another year's worth of terrific performances as she is caught squarely between her amorous feelings for both her gubernatorial candidate husband Chris Noth and her boss/ex-lover Josh Charles. Throw in a career-crisis involving her accepting a partnership at her law firm, which is struggling to survive bankruptcy, and you have great drama. And then you have all of the amazing guest shots and recurring roles that make this show so fun: Michael J. Fox (wonderfully despicable as Margulies' nemesis) , Mamie Gummer (Meryl Streep's adorably quirky daughter and current co-star on The Newsroom),  Nathan Lane (impressive in an Emmy-nominated guest arc as a dubious bankruptcy consultant), Judd Hirsh, Amanda Peet, Gary Cole, John Noble, John Cullum, Matthew Perry and too many to list here. Christine Baranski and Archie Punjabi once again provide great support. Highly recommended! 2012-2013. Unrated. Six separate rentals.]

Highland Park [Topical drama with Billy Burke and Danny Glover as Detroit teachers who are fired because of budget cuts and keep playing the lotto in hopes of winning and using their fortunes to bail the school out. Parker Posey, Kimberly Elise, John Carroll Lynch, Raymond Dunbar, Deborah Ann Wolf and Haaz Sleman co-star in this indie film directed by Andrew Meieran. 2013. Unrated. 94 minutes.]

Killing Season [Exciting and well-cast if familiar thriller in which reclusive US military vet Robert De Niro meets European tourist John Travolta (!) in the Appalachian Mountains and strikes up an unlikely friendship. However, when the tourist's true agenda is revealed, they become enemies in a lethal battle of wills. Co-starring Milo Ventimiglia and Elizabeth Olin. Directed by Mark Steven. 2013. Rated R. 90 minutes.]

Matchmaker, The [2010] [In this Israeli coming of age comedy, a teenage boy in 1968 learns about life and love as he apprentices for a mysterious matchmaker and holocaust survivor. Starring Adir Miller, Maya Dagan, Dror Keren, Dov Navon, and Tuval Shafir. Avi Nesher directed. Unrated. 112 minutes.]

Midsomer Murders, The: Set 22 [Neil Dudgeon and Jason Hughes return for this incredibly popular and darkly humorous British TV crime series in four more quirky mysteries: Sleeper under the Hill; Night of the Stag, A Sacred Trust, and A Rare Bird. 2011. Unrated. 4 separate rentals.]

Moolaade [Ousmane Sembene's final film is a powerful indictment against the still common practice of female circumcision, focusing on 4 small girls who enlists the help of a strong-willed woman who saves them from purification by giving them moolaade (sanctuary). Unfortunately, in doing so, she jeopardizes her own daughter's pending marriage and her own status in the village.]

Nikita: Season 2 [Season 2 is even more explosive as Nikita (sexy Maggie Q) may be going against her own protege Alex (Lyndsy Fonseca) who is on the inside of the agency looking for revenge while Nikita is on the outside trying to destroy the black ops. 2011-2012. Unrated. Five separate rentals.]

No Place on Earth [Janet Tobias directed this fascinating docudrama about caver Chris Nicola, who discovers that a family hid from the Nazis inside a cave for a year and a half starting in 1942. 2012. Rated PG-13. 83 minutes.]

Paradise: Love [Quirky German comedy about a 50 year old woman who travels the beaches of Kenya as a sex tourist, buying love from young men but coming away disappointed. Starring Margarete Tiesel, Peter Kazungu, and Inge Maux. Directed by Ulrich Seidel. 2012. Unrated. 130 minutes.]

Reality [In this darkly hilarious satire, Aniello Arena plays a family man and fishmonger who becomes obsessed with competing on the reality show Big Brother, resulting in his life spiraling out of control in front of the entire country. Also starring Loredana Simoli, Nando Paone, Nunzia, Schiano, and Nello Iorio. Matteo Garrone directed. 2012. Rated R. 123 minutes.]

Shadow Dancer [In this tense political thriller, Andrea Riseborough (Oblivion) stars as a single mother who is arrested in an aborted IRA plot in London and is convinced by MI-5 officer Clive Owen to spy on her own family, but things fall apart when her brother's radical operation is ambushed and she and her family find themselves in grave danger. Aidan Gillen, Domhnall Gleeson, Brid Brennan, Gillian Anderson and David Wilmut co-star. Directed by James Marsh. 2012. Rated R. 102 minutes.]

Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars [Zach Niles' documentary traces the story of the title band - a group of six musicians who formed a band after being displaced from their home during the decade long-civil war in Sierra Leone and rose with the healing power of music. 2005. Unrated. 80 minutes.]

This Is Martin Bonner [Moving indie Sundance Award winner about Martin Bonner, a man who leaves behind his adult children and life and moves to Reno, gets a new job, and volunteers helping prisoners in their transition to freedom. He meets Travis, a just released prisoner who also has nothing but he finds he has a lot in common with Martin, who also seems lost. Directed by Chad Hartigan and starring Paul Eenhoom and Sam Buchanan.  2013. Rated. R. 83 minutes.]

New Arrival:

Gods of the Plague [Rainer Werner Fassbinder directed this offbeat 1969 crime thriller starring Harry Baer as a hyper ex-con who reunites with old friends and enemies and masterminds a crazy and inept supermarket heist that has doom written all over it. Hanna Schygulla, Ingrid Caven, Micha Cochina, Carla Egerer, and Jan George also star.]

Notes by manager Steven Y. Mori.

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