The title selection is warming up this week starting with Welcome to Marwen. Steve Carell stars as Mark Hogancamp, an aspiring artist who survives a violent assault when five men beat him and leave him for dead outside a local bar. When Mark recovers, he discovers he has lost all his memories from before the accident. As a coping mechanism, he created a fictional miniature World War II village called Marwen and takes stunning photographs of the village and its doll inhabitants hoping he can somehow regain his memories and overcome his paralyzing fear of the incident in time to testify against the men in court.
Welcome to Marwen is a sad but inspirational tale of a real life hate crime and the rippling effects such an event has on the victim’s life and those he knows. Carell gives another emotional dramatic performance proving once again there is much more to him than his popular comedy roles. Director Robert Zemeckis also features many scenes of Mark and the people he knows as their doll counterparts living out their adventures in Marwen fighting off their Nazi enemies. This unique element of the film gives an interesting insight into Mark’s mind and how he copes with every day since the attack. Welcome to Marwen is funny, inventive, touching and relevant.
Next up is the new series Dirty John. Based on true events, Dirty John follows Debra Newell (Connie Britton), a successful, beautiful woman living in Newport Beach and looking for love. When she meets handsome doctor John Meehan (Eric Bana) she is quickly swept up in a whirlwind romance despite the bad gut feelings of her daughters Terra (Julia Garner) and Veronica (Juno Temple). As the daughters look into John’s past they get more questions than answers, triggering a sinister game of psychological manipulation that could threaten all their lives.
Dirty John is a frustrating (in a good way) and thrill packed drama that will literally have you screaming at your TV. Connie Britton is excellent although the character of Debra will have you reeling in her terrible decision making skills. And Eric Bana trades in his usual good guy roles for one of the most insane bad guys in quite some time. John is a brilliant psychopath with incredible skills of persuasion and manipulation. The eight episode series is briskly paced and full of twists and turns, definitely one of the best thriller series of the year.
Lastly this week is On the Basis of Sex. Felicity Jones plays real life Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg as we follow her life through Harvard in the 50s through the 70s as a respected and successful professor as she learns of a case of discrimination against a man, which she takes on. The film also follows Ginsberg’s personal life and challenges being a woman in a male saturated world.
On the Basis of Sex is a riveting blend of biopic and courtroom drama led by an amazing performance by Felicity Jones. The supporting cast including the underrated Armie Hammer, Justin Theroux, Sam Waterston, Kathy Bates and Stephen Root are all great and the film really balances the bio with the importance of the cases Ginsberg took on that would lead to her being such a driving force for equality and justice and her eventual position on the Supreme Court.
Also of note this week is the ridiculous comedy Holmes and Watson with Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly at their goofiest, FINALLY the Criterion Blu-ray release of the phenomenal Night on Earth from director Jim Jarmusch, and the new family film A Dogs Way Home.
Until next week movie lovers!
DVD and Blu-ray Releases for Tuesday April 9, 2019
8 Ball Clown
A Dog's Way Home
A War Over Reality
Apocalypse Day One
Berlin, I Love You
Blood Lake [Special Edition]*
Boruto: Naruto Next Generations Set 1
Cold Sweat (1970)
Holmes and Watson
Man on a Ledge (2012) 4K
Mega Time Squad
Moon Child (1989)*
Night on Earth* - Criterion Collection
On the Basis of Sex
Pokémon Diamond & Pearl Movie Collection
Project Blue Book: Season 1
Ray Donovan: The Sixth Season
Rider on the Rain (1970)
Stranger Than Paradise* - Criterion Collection
Talk to Me*
The Aspern Papers
The Hemisphere Box of Horrors*
The Iguana with the Tongue of Fire*
The La Llorona Curse
The Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires (1974)*
This Gun for Hire*
Welcome to Marwen
*Catalog Blu-ray debut