Last week's releases were pretty scant; that changes dramatically this week as "Pet Sematary" headlines the new releases that also include the final season of "Gotham" and the second volume of restored Buster Keaton films from the Cohen Film Collection.
Stephen King's "Pet Sematary" is a straightforward horror film that finds a family mid crisis as a successful doctor moves with his wife and two children from Boston to a small town in Maine in hopes of salvaging his marriage. When tragedy strikes, emotion overrules logic and the dark magic of an old burial ground is unleashed.
Fantasy comedy "Little" finds Jordan Sanders (Regina Hall), an aggressive boss at a tech company, transformed into her childhood self (Marsai Martin)
Also this week is "After," a romantic drama based on Anna Todd's novel about a good girl who falls for a bad boy when leaves the safety of home for the freedom of college; "High Life," a bleak sci-fi saga is the English-language debut for French director Claire Denis about a father (Robert Pattinson) and daughter who are adrift in space on a mission that seemed doomed from the outset; and "Mojin: The Worm Valley" the sequel to the adventure film "Mojin: The Lost Legend" a Chinese action film that resembles the Tomb Raider or Indiana Jones franchises.
The fifth and final season of "Gotham" wraps up the rise of Jim Gordan narrative and offers a look at what could come next now that a certain hero has returned from far off places. At its core, "Gotham" was always about its over-the-top presentation of famous villains and that doesn't change here even when the narrative changes the dynamic with an unexpected left-hand turn.
This week sees the release of two NASA related documentaries. "NASA: A Journey Through Space" is a seven-part series that explores NASA's history from the beginning on through to a look at what lies ahead. "Space Station," originally released in IMAX theaters in 2002, explores the assembly of the International Space Station narrated by Tom Cruise.
This week's catalog releases are headlined by "Alphaville,"Jean-Luc Godard's fantastic sci-fi noir from 1965; the Blu-ray release of the Criterion Collection's Rainer Werner Fassbinder "BRD Trilogy," featuring the director's three female lead films from 1977 "The Marriage of Maria Braun," "Veronika Voss" and "Lola;" the second volume of Cohen Media Group's brilliantly restored Butster Keaton Collection featuring two 1924 silent films "Sherlock Jr." and "The Navigator;" and Agnieszka Holland’s"Europa Europa," a film based on the real-life experiences of Salomon Perel, a man who was forced to go to great lengths to hide his Jewishness after being separated from his family while fleeing to Poland during WWII.
This week's genre catalog releases include a box set including all three seasons of the cult favorite "Forever Knight" from the nineties that found 800-year-old vampire Nick Knight as he works as a detective in Toronto and a pair of Andy Sidaris erotic thrillers "Picasso Trigger" and "Savage Beach" that, like all Sidaris films, promises little plot, outrageous action and heavily armed women in swimsuits.
Mill Creek Entertainment has two collections, an apocalypse-themed "It Hits the Fan" featuring four films that include extraterrestrials, a female biker gang and impending doom and "Shark Bait," six c-grade films focused on blood-thirsty sharks and a bonus film that is inexplicably about alligators. It's all filler, but I suspect that you knew that going in.
I have mixed feelings when it comes to "Alita: Battle Angel." At times it was an exciting sci-fi adventure that felt unique and engrossing. At other times it felt like the story was obsessed with moving on the whatever comes next without ever giving enough thought to developing the characters that they currently have on screen. The romantic aspect is particularly problematic. Still, if there is a sequel, I'd show up.
"Hellboy" was destined to divide audiences simply because it wasn't a Guillermo del Toro film and didn't feature Ron Pearlman in the headline role. Still, I wanted it to work in its own, different way. In fact, Lionsgate didn't screen the film for local critics and I still made my way to the theater to see it opening night. Unfortunately director Neil Marshall goes all in on the gore without ever capitalizing on the richness of Mike Mignola's expanded universe.
In Laika's "Missing Link" Hugh Jackman voices Mr. Link, a creature often referred to as Big Foot. Believing that his relatives are living in the mystical Shangri-La, Link hires Sir Lionel Frost, a British explorer with the reputation of being something of a monster hunter in a community that doesn't believe in monsters.