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You are here: Community Film Blu-ray/DVD Roundup for December 30, 2022

Blu-ray/DVD Roundup for December 30, 2022

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Welcome to another look at highlights arriving on Blu-ray and DVD. While readers are in the middle of the holidays, there are still some interesting discs being released in a variety of genres. So, if you can’t make it out to the movies this week or need to stay indoors, be sure to give one of these titles a try!


BOMB! BURNING FANTASY: THE LIFE AND POETRY OF GREGORY CORSO: Also released under the title, Bomb! Burning Fantasy, this docudrama tells the life story of New Yorker Gregory Corso, who is credited by many to be the best poets of the Beat Generation movement. A synopsis of the movie states that it intertwines some of his words with a dramatic interpretation of life stories. This title was produced and completed in 2015 but had some trouble finding distribution. It played at various film festivals between 2015 and 2017, but is only now debuting on disc.

There aren’t many reviews for the feature, so it seems like the film might be exclusively for those who enjoy the artist’s work. Cast members include Nick Mancuso, Ray Abruzzo and John Savage.

FATHER OF THE BRIDE: This screen story about a dad struggling to let his daughter go after she announces her sudden engagement to be married has been told a few times. The 1950 original starred Spencer Tracy and Elizabeth Taylor, while Steve Martin was the lead in a 1991 remake (which also resulted in a 1995 sequel). The latest tells the story from a Cuban-American perspective. In this adaptation, the father is on the verge of divorce, with his daughter’s unexpected plans causing further conflict and comedic drama within the household.

The latest version of this tale was well-received by the press. A small contingent appreciated the cultural shift but found the screenplay bland, unmemorable and lacking laughs. Still, the consensus was that the lead parents were charismatic and found that there were plenty of new and amusingly fresh elements in this version to make it a worthwhile watch. The film initially debuted on HBO Max and, for the time being, is a DVD-only release.

It stars Andy Garcia, Gloria Estefan, Adria Arjona, Diego Boneta, Pedro Damian and Isabela Merced.

GOODBYE, DON GLEES!: A trio of teenage misfits enjoy spending their summer days venturing out into the woods. When they are wrongly blamed for a forest fire, the three set out to prove their innocence. In the process, they end up getting themselves in further danger and start to turn on one another. It soon becomes clear that the informal group is growing up and growing apart.

This Japanese animated family feature earned raves from critics and was nominated for awards at festivals worldwide. In fact, there haven’t been any negative write-ups for the title so far. All reviewers called it wonderfully animated, heartfelt and very relatable as it depicted friendships changing and breaking apart. This release includes a Blu-ray and DVD and has the original Japanese language track with English subtitles and an English-language dub.

HALLOWEEN ENDS: The third installment in the latest series of Halloween films picks up four years after the previous entry when things have seemingly quieted down. Laurie Strode, survivor from the 1978 Halloween original, is now living with her granddaughter, writing her memoirs and trying to live life to the fullest. But when a young man is accused of murdering a child he was babysitting, the matriarch begins to wonder if psychotic killer Michael Myers may have returned for a final showdown.

The press didn’t care for this chapter in the story. A small number of reviewers found it unique and interesting, continuing themes from the previous film of the power of myth and how angry mobs can damage small communities. Alas, more complained about the plot, suggesting it went on too many tangents and didn’t deliver the thrills one would hope for from a climactic confrontation.

It stars Jamie Lee Curtis, Andi Matichak, James Jude Courtney, Rohan Campbell, Will Patton and Kyle Richards.

JANE BY CHARLOTTE: Here’s another title combining documentary and biopic elements to examine the life of its subject.

In this case, famed singer and actress Jane Birkin is the figure being studied. Her own daughter (actress Charlotte Gainsbourg), directs the movie. The filmmaker sets up a conversation between herself and her mom, who reveals regret for some of her decisions. The film uses existing footage of the performer and some dramatic photography to emphasize interpretations of some of the ideas and thoughts being expressed.

Overall, reviewers had a mixed reception to what they saw, although they were slightly more positive than negative. Those who disliked it called the movie unsatisfying and said that there wasn’t much context for the conversations. Still, more critics appreciated the movie for being intimate and honest, detailing a strained mother-daughter relationship.

THE LAIR: Genre film enthusiasts may be interested in the latest chiller from writer/director Neil Marshall (Dog Soldiers, The Descent, Centurion). When a British military pilot is shot down in Afghanistan, she tries to take refuge in an underground bunker. As it turns out, the secret site had been in use years earlier to develop man-made biological weapons, including half-human, half-alien creatures. She must fight to survive the monster onslaught.

This effort wasn’t as well received as some of the filmmaker’s earlier works. Close to half of write-ups thought it started very well and offered some impressively shot and edited action scenes that would impress its target audience. Sadly, more complained that the story ran out of ideas quickly and that some of the performances were weak. It features Charlotte Kirk, Jonathan Howard and Jamie Bamber.

LAMBORGHINI: Also known as Lamborghini: The Man Behind the Legend, this biopic tells the life story of auto inventor Ferruccio Lamborghini. After getting into the business of building fast cars and striving to do whatever it takes to defeat countryman and rival Enzo Ferrari, the lead sees his opportunity at the Geneva Grand Prix. With untested ideas for a new vehicle, he strives to get his creation into the race and win.

Critics almost uniformly panned this drama. One reviewer thought the movie was well-produced and told an interesting origin story for the famous manufacturer. But everyone else called it a lemon, suggesting it was choppy and too short to offer any interesting insight or excitement about the real-life figure.

The cast includes Frank Grillo, Gabriel Byrne, Mira Sorvino, Fortunato Cerlino and Romano Reggiani.

PIRATES: Set at the end of 1999, this coming-of-age comedy follows three friends making a name for themselves as pirate DJs. With their paths potentially going in different directions, the trio set out to attend London’s biggest New Year’s Eve bash and impress acquaintances. Unfortunately, getting tickets proves to be more difficult than expected and they get into some uncomfortable situations as their desperation to attend rises.

Response was very upbeat towards this UK comedy and every critic who reviewed the film liked it. They all commented that the kids were likable and had good chemistry together. Additionally, they noted that the situations were amusing and that the film product was charming.

It stars Elliot Edusah, Jordan Peters, Reda Elazouar and Kassius Nelson.



Looking for something a little older? You have plenty of options.

This week, many smaller labels partnering with Vinegar Syndrome are making their titles available at major retailers like Amazon. Altered Innocence is putting out a Blu-ray of the French drama Elisa (1995) starring Vanessa Paradis as an angry teen out to murder the father (who is played by Gerard Depardieu) who abandoned her as a child. The disc includes a video essay on the movie as well as a photo gallery and trailer.

ETR Media have teamed with Vinegar Syndrome to present I Think We’re Alone Now (2008) on Blu-ray. This documentary details the lives of two people who are huge fans of 80s teen singer Tiffany. While the two have been called stalkers, this film attempts to present a more detailed look at their lives and obsession. This disc features commentary tracks from the two subjects and the director, updates on the persons featured, lost bits and pieces from the movie, an animated short on how it came to be produced, a music video and much more.

The well-regarded but hard-to-find Malaysian musical comedy Sell-Out (2008) is arriving on Blu-ray from Kani. This film follows a young man working for a multinational conglomerate who designs a revolutionary piece of technology for soybeans, only to see his bosses attempt to manipulate the item and its release for their own benefit. This release includes both the Venice and Director’s Cut alongside the original soundtrack of ear-worm musical numbers (you’ll also get a bonus soundtrack CD).

Finally, the Academy Award-nominee Nobody’s Fool (1994) is receiving a 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray upgrade. Paul Newman stars as an aging man reflecting on his life and attempting to correct a few of his mistakes. Bruce Willis, Melanie Griffith and Jessica Tandy also appear in the feature. Extras include a film historian commentary and interviews with the screenwriter and cast member Catherine Dent. And if you just want a Blu-ray of this title, it can also be purchased on its own.



Here are a few titles that might keep youngsters busy (the last one listed will be for older kids)

Big Trip 2: Special Delivery (Lionsgate) DVD only

Digimon Adventure: The Complete Original 1999 English First Series (Discotek Media) Blu-ray

Goodbye, Don Glees! (Shout! Factory) Blu-ray and DVD set



And here are all of the week’s TV-themed releases.

Ancient Aliens Season 16 (History Channel) DVD

Digimon Adventure: The Complete Original 1999 English First Series (Discotek Media) Blu-ray

The Staircase (Limited Series) (Warner Bros.) DVD


By Glenn Kay
For the Sun