RT on DVD: Giddy Up With Appaloosa, Forget My Best Friend's Girl

Plus, who the heck are the Tokyo Gore Police??

by | January 12, 2009 | Comments

Check out Ed Harris’ Certified Fresh Western, Appaloosa, but do try and avoid certified stinkers like My Best Friend’s Girl, Mirrors, and Seann William Scott’s direct-to-video vehicle, Balls Out: Gary the Tennis Coach. After all, there are surprises in store, especially if the Japanese title Tokyo Gore Police catches your fancy…

1. Appaloosa — 75%

Another Certified Fresh new release this week is Appaloosa, which comes courtesy of actor/director Ed Harris (who previously starred in and directed the Oscar-winning biopic, Pollock). Harris moseys into the Western genre with a relatively straightforward drama about two lawmen (Harris and Viggo Mortensen) whose tenuous friendship is tested by an evil entrepreneur (Jeremy Irons) and a comely widow (Renee Zellweger). Action packed it ain’t; this Wild West bromance is for fans of the quiet, character-driven Western. However, the disc is rounded out nicely with special features on historical accuracy and the usual making-of experience, as well as a feature-length commentary by Harris and actor/screenwriter Robert Knott (who played Harris’ brother in Pollock).

Next: Mirrors

2. Mirrors — 14%

Apparently, Jack Bauer can’t save everything. Despite starring erstwhile 24 hero Kiefer Sutherland, this lethargic Korean horror remake about — you guessed it! — demonic mirrors never reached above #4 at the box office last summer. The spooky tale, directed by French horror director Alexandre Aja (High Tension), should have yielded much more; instead, Mirrors barely out-grossed Aja’s previous slasher, The Hills Have Eyes, and is his worst-reviewed film to date. Horror devotees may still want to check out the Unrated DVD release for an alternate ending and Aja’s commentary on select scenes; we might recommend a Blu-ray rental just to see Amy Smart’s head ripped apart in HD.

Next: Brideshead Revisited

Brits may consider Evelyn Waugh’s 1945 novel Brideshead Revisited among their best 20th century works of literature, and its 1981 television serial among their most beloved original programs, but they’ll probably be much harsher on this 2008 adaptation. A decent retelling with a stellar cast pedigree, Julian Jarrold’s (Kinky Boots) Brideshead stars Ben Whishaw, Emma Thompson and Matthew Goode (in the role that made Jeremy Irons a star in the 1981 miniseries) in a story about a young man involved with a family of aristocrats in the years before and during World War II. A few featurettes and a feature-length commentary with the filmmakers provide insight into how and why they chose to focus on certain elements of Waugh’s novel over others in order to create a unique adaptation.

Next: My Best Friend’s Girl

Employee of the Month. Good Luck Chuck. And now, My Best Friend’s Girl. What single factor unites these three abysmal wastes of celluloid? Dane Cook. The comedian-turned-romantic comedy star did nothing to correct his rotten run on the Tomatometer with his most recent flick, My Best Friend’s Girl, in which he starred as a sleaze-for-hire who accidentally falls in love with his pal’s lady friend (Kate Hudson, who has also been stuck in rom-com hell for years). This DVD release contains more MBFG special features than any decent person should ever be allowed to watch, including a feature-length commentary in which supporting actor Jason Biggs (who’s building his own “What the Hell Happened” niche) gets stuck in a room with a producer and the screenwriter to wax poetic while drinking in the recording studio.

Next: Swing Vote

5. Swing Vote — 36%

Imagine if the Presidential election came down to a single vote, and that vote belonged to the most ignorant, irresponsible, apolitical man in America. While it’s hard to laugh at the 2000 Florida recount fiasco, producer/star Kevin Costner thought it made for compelling movie making; audiences, however, may have found the mix of political satire with still-raw sentiment to be like oil and water. It’s a shame, since Costner’s “aww shucks” performance as Bud, who may as well have been named after his favorite beer, is one of his most charismatic performances in years. Deleted scenes, a making-of featurette and a commentary with writer/director Joshua Michael Stern and his co-scripter Jason Richman comprise the bonus menu.

Next: Tyler Perry’s The Family That Preys

Tyler Perry knows his niche, and it has served him well. His latest — a Medea-free drama full of infidelity, backstabbing, and, yes, strong black women — is not only a semi-departure from his usual niche comedies, it’s also his best-reviewed film to date. (It’s still rotten, but an improvement nonetheless.) Kathy Bates, Alfre Woodard, Cole Hauser, Sanaa Lathan, and Taraji P. Henson join Perry himself as various members of two dramatically-linked families; featurettes and deleted scenes supplement the disc.

Next: Seann William Scott in…Balls Out: Gary the Tennis Coach

As we wind down this edition of RT on DVD, we make a brief stop in Direct-to-DVD Land, where we find poor former American Pie-er Seann William Scott wallowing in low budget “comedy” hijinks. Competing for Worst Release of the Week with the direct-to-DVD sequel Without a Paddle: Nature’s Calling (which inexplicably stars Number 80 himself, Jerry Rice) is Balls Out: Gary the Tennis Coach. One might suppose director Danny Leiner nabbed poor Seann William Scott because of their prior relationship making the modern classic, Dude, Where’s My Car? (“Where’s your car, dude?”) or even Leiner’s major breakthrough feature, Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle. Is Direct-to-DVD Hell not far beneath the likes of Stifler? Oh, how we long for the days of watching Seann William Scott being peed on from on high. At least there was dignity in that.

Next: Humboldt County

8. Humboldt County — 58%

Support indie film by checking out this stoner comedy from first-time directors Darren Grodsky and Danny Jacobs (who appear in a charmingly comic promo video for their film on the DVD release). Grodsky and Jacobs nabbed a solid cast for their tale of a straight-laced med student stuck for a summer on a pot farm in Humboldt County (“the northern part of Cali”), including Frances Conroy, Peter Bogdanovich, Brad Dourif, and Fairuza Balk; behind-the-scenes footage and more bolster Humboldt County‘s DVD release, which you can rent or buy directly from the filmmakers here.

Next: Tokyo Gore Police — 100%

Horror hounds need not settle for this week’s tepid thriller, Mirrors — why settle for subpar studio remakes when much more exciting and unique films are at hand? The 1981 cult slasher My Bloody Valentine gets a Special Edition (timed to coincide with Lionsgate’s upcoming remake, My Bloody Valentine 3D) which means a remastering, re-inserted gore (originally cut out to avoid an X rating), and never-before-seen deleted scenes! But if that tale of a crazed, pickaxe-wielding miner isn’t enough to get your bloodlust going, take a gander at the new import Tokyo Gore Police, from the makers of Machine Girl. In Tokyo Gore Police, a wave of mutated humans are able to create weapons from any wound inflicted upon them — the results, as you might imagine, are grotesque , gory (and thus, awesome) in equal measure. Early festival reviews have TGP pegged at 100 percent on the Tomatometer; V.A. Musetto of the New York Post calls it “quite possibly the goriest, craziest, most eye-blowing, chunk-spewing, head-exploding sci-fi movie of all time.”

Tag Cloud

docudrama Animation Extras Best Director Video Games aapi Hear Us Out kong social media sequels APB james bond harry potter Trophy Talk OneApp sitcom CNN Freeform Infographic fast and furious rom-coms dogs Peacock Spring TV Holidays laika Disney Plus trailers Trailer ghosts Nickelodeon die hard Walt Disney Pictures Marvel cancelled television boxing toronto target scene in color summer TV preview Election canceled Endgame hispanic adaptation TLC nbcuniversal Writers Guild of America Sci-Fi Superheroe Oscar ratings Showtime IFC Mary Tyler Moore politics black Super Bowl Pirates Instagram Live YouTube Premium VICE streamig CBS Anna Paquin Black Mirror Country teaser Interview Esquire justice league The CW Britbox Ghostbusters The Witch Comics on TV American Society of Cinematographers The Academy spanish language genre TIFF Pride Month blockbusters BBC Disney streaming service critics Fargo Sneak Peek Lionsgate TNT Comedy Central Tomatazos satire Pop Funimation Best Actor television revenge Mystery GLAAD scorecard 21st Century Fox slashers christmas movies classics spider-verse NBA Tumblr TV australia PlayStation aliens king arthur Film Festival BET Awards Cartoon Network NBC crime drama biopic DC streaming service zombie PBS CMT natural history sports thriller SundanceTV game show TV Land 45 indiana jones 20th Century Fox BET HBO Go nature japanese obi wan canceled TV shows Rocky posters reboot Summer Ellie Kemper President cancelled TV shows what to watch GoT spanish Trivia 90s art house Paramount Network richard e. Grant LGBTQ Character Guide comiccon zero dark thirty Best Picture Emmys Countdown comic book movie olympics Pixar live event comic Binge Guide batman name the review Television Critics Association Broadway Valentine's Day Comic Book WGN quibi stand-up comedy series FX on Hulu Kids & Family high school serial killer screen actors guild Focus Features live action South by Southwest Film Festival Thanksgiving golden globes Television Academy breaking bad mob 71st Emmy Awards Baby Yoda toy story Masterpiece strong female leads Travel Channel Women's History Month cults Star Wars MGM police drama Netflix book Red Carpet monster movies Ovation suspense 99% MTV YouTube Amazon Prime Geeked Week 2019 films Sundance Logo ViacomCBS godzilla Lucasfilm Polls and Games Stephen King criterion Podcast Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Martial Arts Emmy Nominations directors Certified Fresh Awards rt labs critics edition MCU disaster Crunchyroll CW Seed Exclusive Video Image Comics 79th Golden Globes Awards remakes elevated horror Rom-Com vs. Epix science fiction facebook golden globe awards green book young adult summer TV Grammys joker Sundance TV Avengers El Rey TruTV Fox Searchlight halloween Oscars E3 Family Acorn TV A24 Brie Larson heist movie target Hollywood Foreign Press Association San Diego Comic-Con casting new york Tarantino parents cats Hallmark lord of the rings transformers Awards Tour Quiz Shondaland based on movie anime ESPN discovery independent Lifetime TV movies festivals 94th Oscars period drama Mudbound child's play latino Tubi Neflix Paramount Plus Marathons indie cancelled TV series Native spain Music HFPA IFC Films Winners marvel comics Columbia Pictures 2016 space GIFs spy thriller psycho Biopics emmy awards Disney Channel Cannes Sony documentary Sony Pictures Dark Horse Comics Nominations true crime HBO TV renewals best Drama TV One TCA 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards Superheroes BBC America blockbuster Legendary archives romantic comedy Turner Classic Movies Sundance Now italian Universal Pictures cinemax robots FXX stoner dragons gangster 4/20 WarnerMedia diversity Watching Series LGBT Best and Worst Indigenous universal monsters First Reviews basketball razzies psychological thriller mutant comics comic book movies scene in color film series AMC Plus DC Comics children's TV Reality Competition Lifetime Christmas movies Toys Creative Arts Emmys franchise AMC 93rd Oscars The Arrangement E! tv talk FOX Netflix Christmas movies mockumentary Prime Video Premiere Dates Starz Discovery Channel 1990s Black History Month Film supernatural Photos vampires Hulu streaming movies movie SXSW 2022 theme song rt labs Best Actress ABC Family slasher Reality a nightmare on elm street Pacific Islander ID Arrowverse 24 frames crime thriller screenings Teen Action king kong news Apple TV Plus concert Star Trek crossover video Disney+ Disney Plus TCA Awards international TCA 2017 TCA Winter 2020 SDCC Rocketman dramedy A&E streaming Spectrum Originals Universal zombies Box Office ITV Apple 2017 dexter halloween tv superman new zealand action-comedy book adaptation Bravo composers DGA cancelled IMDb TV Paramount Marvel Television Paramount Pictures sequel documentaries dreamworks Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt singing competition cars miniseries 72 Emmy Awards stop motion Musical Calendar See It Skip It rotten movies we love football Alien medical drama Musicals critic resources Adult Swim biography Schedule movies adenture USA award winner spider-man Elton John Chernobyl obituary Wes Anderson docuseries Spike worst movies 2015 all-time DC Universe twilight hist Song of Ice and Fire Mary Poppins Returns summer preview Fox News nfl historical drama mcc marvel cinematic universe dark foreign The Purge video on demand finale OWN game of thrones leaderboard History The Walt Disney Company Classic Film reviews black comedy Amazon jamie lee curtis Crackle popular scene in color Winter TV Syfy USA Network travel Disney dceu cartoon TBS Turner Captain marvel binge Tags: Comedy Nat Geo spinoff Western 2021 NYCC adventure wonder woman worst witnail know your critic japan royal family comic books 73rd Emmy Awards DirecTV doctor who rotten french 2018 Hallmark Christmas movies feel good Vudu Warner Bros. RT History Amazon Studios south america Horror romance ABC Signature National Geographic sopranos women First Look VH1 Academy Awards kids 2020 hollywood broadcast TCM RT21 MSNBC X-Men ABC CBS All Access Opinion scary movies sag awards Food Network anthology hidden camera kaiju YouTube Red deadpool debate dc free movies jurassic park Set visit festival SXSW rt archives political drama new star wars movies werewolf Holiday FX The Walking Dead interviews hispanic heritage month scary Apple TV+ legend Mary poppins Amazon Prime Video HBO Max Tokyo Olympics Fantasy BAFTA comedies cooking saw scene in color series Pet Sematary mission: impossible Star Wars Celebration Pop TV venice Mindy Kaling technology Heroines chucky superhero cops Marvel Studios Fall TV Shudder versus PaleyFest fresh New York Comic Con pirates of the caribbean BBC One talk show 007 Year in Review blaxploitation Christmas VOD asian-american telelvision YA boxoffice prank Comedy trophy crime renewed TV shows animated unscripted Cosplay Rock war Comic-Con@Home 2021