Sunday, April 13, 2014

DVD Outlook: April 2014

As it appears, April may be a tough month to get through. With the calm before the May Summer Blockbuster storm currently taking place in theatres and almost all of the big-named 2013 titles already reaching DVD in March, there's very little to get excited about this month. However, there are a few films being released on DVD and Video-On-Demand that should help ease this April lull, and here they are:

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty - 3 stars out of 4 - (Read my full review here)

I've always been up and down on Ben Stiller's career body of work. And after the combination of a trailer that didn't "grab" me and a critical bashing for his 2013 pet project, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, I must be honest and say expectations were rather low. Thankfully, Stiller didn't disappoint and his long-awaited film proved to be one that the critics got wrong. Stiller directs and stars as Walter Mitty, a simple man who day dreams about going on adventures and whisking away the the girl of his dreams (played by Kristen Wiig). But when the negative for LIFE Magazine's final cover goes missing, the opportunity presents itself for Walter to finally seek out a real-life adventure. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is a charming and Underrated Film that's easy to appreciate. (April 15th)

August: Osage County - 3 stars out of 4 - (Read a guest review by Greg Rouleau here)

Nominated for a pair of acting Oscars, August: Osage County isn't a film for everyone. Based on a stage play of the same name, the film is short on action and heavy on dialogue. The audience is forced to watch closely as Weston family reconnects following the passing of their patriarch. Meryl Streep stars as Violet Weston, the unloving and drug-addicted mother that works her hardest to break down each and every member of the family by pointing out their flaws. This dark comedy is by no means an easy watch, but fans of strong dialogue and off-kilter humor may enjoy this rather odd tale of a family consumed with secrets. (April 8th)

Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues - 2 stars out of 4 - (No review available)

It was difficult finding a third option to suggest for the month of April, so I decided to go with the comedy Anchorman 2. The first installment was an outlandish pioneer of sorts, but this sequel is an overextended and somewhat recycled shell of the original. Once again, Will Ferrell stars as the self-absorbed and arrogant Ron Burgundy who looks to reinvent himself after losing his job to his wife (sound familiar?). When the old team gets back together, Burgundy and company transform news from the informative platform it once was, to the ludicrous fluff it has become. There's plenty of laugh-out-loud humor at the expense of a two-hour long senseless story that feels eerily similar to the original. (April 1st)

Honorable Mention: One film I'm yet to mention is the Best Picture Nominee Philomena (4/15) which captured the hearts of many audiences. I personally felt that the film was a little anti-climactic but I was clearly in the minority. Fans of the fantasy franchise The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (4/8) can rejoice and catch up with the latest installment's DVD release. I wasn't a fan of the unrealistic single mother drama Labor Day (4/29) starring Kate Winslet and Josh Brolin, but I've met many others who enjoyed the film.

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