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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Sunday-Thurday, 12pm-8pm
Friday-Saturday, 12pm-9pm


Email (Questions/Feedback/Requests):
info @ videoroomoakland.com

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Monday, January 20, 2014

New Releases - January 21, 2014

Blu-rays:

Blue Jasmine [Woody Allen's most recent movie is also considered one of his best...period. Cate Blanchett gives an amazing performance as a troubled and self-absorbed NY socialite who moves to San Francisco to impose on down to earth sister Sally Hawkins and encounters a nasty reality check when she has to deal with real people. This is the third film Woody has done in San Francisco (his 1969 directing debut Take the Money and Run was shot in S.F., Oakland and other Bay Area locations and Herb Ross' Play It Again, Sam was shot almost entirely in S.F. Bay Area too in 1972), and he once again makes great use of the Bay Area he knows very well. Blanchett has already won Best Actress awards at the Golden Globes, Screen Actors Guild, and several critics associations and is considered a front runner for the Oscar. As usual with Allen's films, the supporting cast is filled with surprising but wonderful choices: Alec Baldwin, Peter Sarsgaard, Louis C.K., Bobby Cannavale, Emily Bergl, Michael Stuhlbarg, and Andrew Dice Clay. Highly Recommended! 2013. Rated PG-13. 98 minutes. Box Office: $34 million.]

Captain Phillips [Tom Hanks gives one of his best performances in this exciting and controversial thriller based on the true story of Captain Richard Phillips and his cargo ship crew trying to survive kidnapping by 4 Somali pirates led by vicious Barkhad Abdi while a Navy Seal team makes plans to rescue them. Director Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Supremacy, United 93) once again delivers an intense, relentless and beautifully acted film. Although both Hanks and Greengrass were shut out of getting any Oscar nominations (despite being nominated by many other award organizations), the film still received 6 nominations, including Best Picture and Best Supporting for Abdi. The controversy comes in because although most consider Phillips a hero, some of his crew members think he made some questionable choices. Regardless of that, the movie itself is an excellent thriller. Co-starring Barkhad Abdirahman, Catherine Keener, Faysel Ahmed, Chris Mulkey and Mahat M. Ali. Highly Recommended! 2013. Rated PG-13. 134 minutes. Box Office: $105 million.]

Machete Kills [Another all-star, over-the-top Robert Rodriguez hoot with Danny Trejo returning as the title anti-hero/enforcer who is trying to stop warlord Demian Bechir (the terrific male lead from TV's The Bridge) from killing US President Charlie Sheen. The truly crazy badass cast includes Sofia Vergara, Mel Gibson, Antonio Banderas, Lady Gaga (!), Walton Goggins, Cuba Gooding, Jr., Michelle Rodriguez, Vanessa Hudgens, William Sadler and Amber Heard. Chances are if you liked the original, absurdly violent and immensely enjoyable Machete, you will like this sequel as well. Seeing Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson in a movie together should we worth the price of a rental alone!  2013. Rated R. 107 minutes. Box Office: $8 million.] 

DVDs:

Blue Jasmine [Woody Allen's most recent movie is also considered one of his best...period. Cate Blanchett gives an amazing performance as a troubled and self-absorbed NY socialite who moves to San Francisco to impose on down to earth sister Sally Hawkins and encounters a nasty reality check when she has to deal with real people. This is the third film Woody has done in San Francisco (his 1969 directing debut Take the Money and Run was shot in S.F., Oakland and other Bay Area locations and Herb Ross' Play It Again, Sam was shot almost entirely in S.F. Bay Area too in 1972), and he once again makes great use of the Bay Area he knows very well. Blanchett has already won Best Actress awards at the Golden Globes, Screen Actors Guild, and several critics associations and is considered a front runner for the Oscar. As usual with Allen's films, the supporting cast is filled with surprising but wonderful choices: Alec Baldwin, Peter Sarsgaard, Louis C.K., Bobby Cannavale, Emily Bergl, Michael Stuhlbarg, and Andrew Dice Clay. Highly Recommended! 2013. Rated PG-13. 98 minutes. Box Office: $34 million.]

Café de Flore [Offbeat, crowd-pleasing Canadian-French romantic drama about a young mother with a disabled son in 1960's Paris and a divorced DJ in modern day Montreal whose love story connects despite being from different times. Starring Vanessa Paradis, Kevin Parent, Helene Florent, Evelene Brochu, Marin Gerrier, Alice Dubois, Evelyne de la Cheneliere, and Michel Dumont. Jean-Marc Vallee directed. 2011. Unrated. 111 minutes.]

Captain Phillips [Tom Hanks gives one of his best performances in this exciting and controversial thriller based on the true story of Captain Richard Phillips and his cargo ship crew trying to survive kidnapping by 4 Somali pirates led by vicious Barkhad Abdi while a Navy Seal team makes plans to rescue them. Director Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Supremacy, United 93) once again delivers an intense, relentless and beautifully acted film. Although both Hanks and Greengrass were shut out of getting any Oscar nominations (despite being nominated by many other award organizations), the film still received 6 nominations, including Best Picture and Best Supporting for Abdi. The controversy comes in because although most consider Phillips a hero, some of his crew members think he made some questionable choices. Regardless of that, the movie itself is an excellent thriller. Co-starring Barkhad Abdirahman, Catherine Keener, Faysel Ahmed, Chris Mulkey and Mahat M. Ali. Highly Recommended! 2013. Rated PG-13. 134 minutes. Box Office: $105 million.]

Charlie Countryman [Wild, over-the-top action comedy with Shia LaBeouf as a confused young guy who goes to Bucharest because of a vision, falls for beautiful Romanian Evan Rachel Wood, runs afoul of her mad ex Mads Mikkelsen (The Hunt and TV's Hannibal) and may not make it back alive. The interesting co-stars include Rupert Grint, Vincent D'Onofrio and Melissa Leo. Frederik Bond (Moby: Play-The DVD) directed. 2013. Rated R. 108 minutes.]

In a World... [Following hot on the heels of triple threat Joseph Gordon-Levitt's edgy and funny Don Jon, actress Lake Bell (It's Complicated, TV's Surface) proved that she's not just a talented actress and a pretty face by directing and writing this cute comedy that she also headlines. She plays an underachieving voice coach who ends up competing in the movie trailer voice over field against her arrogant father and his protégé. Co-starring Jeff Garlin, Fred Melamed, Rob Corddry, Alexandra Holden, Eva Longoria (with whom she co-starred in Over Her Dead Body), Ken Marino, Nick Offerman, Geena Davis, and Michaela Watkins. Highly Recommended! 2013. Rated R. 93 minutes. Box Office: $3 million.] 

Machete Kills [Another all-star, over-the-top Robert Rodriguez hoot with Danny Trejo returning as the title anti-hero/enforcer who is trying to stop warlord Demian Bechir (the terrific male lead from TV's The Bridge) from killing US President Charlie Sheen. The truly crazy badass cast includes Sofia Vergara, Mel Gibson, Antonio Banderas, Lady Gaga (!), Walton Goggins, Cuba Gooding, Jr., Michelle Rodriguez, Vanessa Hudgens, William Sadler and Amber Heard. Chances are, if you liked the original, absurdly violent and immensely enjoyable Machete, you will like this sequel as well. Seeing Charlie Sheen and Mel Gibson in a movie together should we worth the price of a rental alone!  2013. Rated R. 107 minutes. Box Office: $8 million.]

Prey, The [aka La Proie] [Intense French thriller about a bank robber who breaks out of prison to protect his family after he confides to his cellmate who turns out to be a total murderous psycho. Starring Albert Dupontel, Alice Taglioni, Stephane Debac, Sergi Lopez, Natacha Regnier, Caterina Murino, and Lucien Jean-Baptiste. Directed by Eric Valette. 2011. Rated R. 105 minutes.]

Rewind This! [Remember when we used to carry VHS tapes and laserdiscs? You can re-live those good old days again with this enjoyable documentary as it traces the history of home video, VHS and how they changed the world. I'm sure it will be a nostalgic trip back to the past for a lot of Video Room customers. Among the filmmakers, actors and others interviewed include Atom Egoyan, Frank Henenlotter, Charles Band, Mamoru Oshii, Cassandra Peterson, Lloyd Kaufman, Jason Eisener, and David "The Rock" Nelson.  Directed by Josh Johnson.  2013. Unrated. 94 minutes.] 

Notes by manager Steven Y. Mori.

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