dvd_if a tree falls

Welcome back to our weekly look at new DVD releases coming to a virtual shelf near you! Lots of good stuff this week worth a rental at least and possibly a buy depending on your tastes. My own interests have marked five titles as Buys including two TV shows. Merrill Barr may suspect I’m doing so strictly to spite his recent bout of ridiculousness where he claimed TV shows on DVD are pointless, but I’m not. They’re just damn good shows. This week’s releases include In a Better World, Wrecked, Norwegian Ninja, True Adolescents, The Perfect Host, and more. As always, if you see something you like, click on the image to buy it. If a Tree Falls: The Story of the Earth Liberation Front In 2005 federal and state law enforcement agents across the country conducted simultaneous arrests of past and current members of the Earth Liberation Front. The men and women were charged with a series of arsons that had occurred throughout the Pacific Northwest over the previous decade. This insightful and balanced documentary explores the case from both sides with a focus on one of the defendants, Daniel McGowan. There’s no question of guilt or innocence, but instead it’s the charge of terrorism they face that fuels the debate. Should these fires (in which not a single person was killed or injured) be comparable to 9/11 or the Oklahoma City federal building bombing? It’s thought provoking and challenging, and proves that there aren’t always easy answers when […]



Imagine you’re trapped in a car with a wild-eyed Adrien Brody. And you’re dressed like Halle Berry on Oscar night. Scary isn’t it? Now erase that disturbing image from your head, and instead imagine waking up in a wrecked car in the middle of nowhere, with no recollection of how you got there or even who you are, and no clue how you’re going to get out alive. A man (Adrien Brody) opens his eyes to find he’s seated in the passenger seat of a still smoking crashed car. Part of his body is trapped beneath the crumpled dash, his head is battered and bruised, and he can feel the steady pulse of blood seeping from his shattered leg. He surveys his surroundings through blurred eyes and sees nothing but deep forest ahead and to either side and a steep embankment behind. And he’s all alone. Alone… except for two dead bodies, a gun beneath his seat, a hungry mountain lion, a mysterious visitor or two, and a gnawing suspicion that he may just be a very bad man.


The Reject Report

It ain’t Easter, right? It ain’t Easter. It ain’t white rabbit day. Don’t tell Universal that. They’re looking to bring in the golden egg with the seasonal Hop, and there’s a very good chance of that happening. Duncan Jones’s second film, Source Code, and the new horror film from the guys who brought us Saw – thanks, guys to be named later – may have something to say about that, but whatever that is will probably fall on deaf bunny ears. See what I did there? Well, see some more this week with the Reject Report the hollow chocolate bunny edition.



With hints of both Ryan Reynolds and James Franco’s one-man shows as well as a plot that comes achingly close to J.G. Ballard’s “Concrete Island,” the new trailer for Wrecked shows Adrien Brody with no one to act against but himself at the bottom of a ravine. Fortunately, his leg is trapped in a wrecked car, and he has no idea who he is. The trailer builds on that tension and reveals who he is, what he’s done, and which hallucinations are probably going to drive him furthest down the trail of insanity. Check it out for yourself:



Editor’s Note: Normally it’s Landon Palmer hustling your brain through the mental gymnastics of popular culture and film theory, but he’s grading papers or something, so Cole Abaius is taking the reigns to drop kick your mind (instead of completely blowing it). Check back next week for the brilliance if you survive the completely adequate. It’s dark. Not the kind of dark where you strain to make out figures in the near distance or the kind of dark that sends a thrill through you in a movie theater. It’s the kind of darkness that your eyes never adjust to because there’s no light, and there never will be. I’m at the bottom of a cave near the small town of Bustamante, Mexico, and after passing graffiti from the 19th century, my friends and I have all decided to turn off our headlamps before heading into the grand hall. With the lights gone, the cool of the room becomes more tangible, and the walls begin to creep inward. Fortunately, this seems to be the latest trend in movie-making: shoving someone into the solitary confinement of life threatening danger, and seeing if they can work their way out.

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published: 01.26.2015
published: 01.26.2015
published: 01.26.2015
B-, C-

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