Well I hope everyone is enjoying this last burst of summer weather! Once it gets cold again at the end of the week settle in with a few titles out this week starting with Disney’s new live action film Mulan. In Imperial China, Mulan (Yifei Liu) is a headstrong and independent young woman who is distressed at having been matched for marriage by her parents. But when Böri Khan (Jason Scott Lee) and his invading army of Rouran warriors starts taking over the country, the Emperor of China orders a man from every family to fight in the war. But seeing how ailing her father is, Mulan disguises herself as a young man and joins the Imperial army in his place. But Mulan must find a way to prove herself and do all she can to make sure the country is safe from the tyrannical rule of the Khan.
Mulan is a live action adaptation of Disney’s classic animated feature from 1998 and as far as their new live action films go, this is a departure and one of their best. Yifei Liu really shines as Mulan and Niki Caro’s direction is lush, epic and sweeping. And the rest of cast really has some standouts as well including the vastly underrated Jason Scott Lee as Böri Khan, Donnie Yen as Mulan’s commanding officer, and some great cameos in there as well. There was one fantastic scene from the original animated film that I really wish were still here, but overall the choice to make this a straight adventure film instead of a song and fantasy filled tale like the animated film works. And there is still some wonderment, especially from Böri Khan’s witch Xianniang (Li Gong). Overall, Mulan is a fantastic, action filled epic adventure for the family. Highly recommended.
Next up this week is the new film from Woody Allen, A Rainy Day in New York. Gatsby Welles (Timothée Chalamet) is planning a romantic weekend in New York with his girlfriend Ashleigh (Elle Fanning) as she travels there to interview cult director Roland Pollard (Liev Schreiber) for the college paper. But the trip to New York turns out to be something completely different for both Gatsby and Ashleigh as they wander the city meeting new people and doing new things that open their eyes to new experiences and discoveries that may change them forever.
Woody Allen is an absolutely brilliant writer and director and even though his work in recent years may not achieve the level of his 70’s and 80’s output, they are still always well written, intriguing and funny human behavior studies with alluring casts. A Rainy Day in New York is no different. Chalamet is excellent as Gatsby and Elle Fanning is delightful as usual. The story is a relatable tale of thinking you know what you want when you are young until you see that there is a whole world out there. There is romance, laughs and drama but it is the trademark Allen dialogue that keeps me coming back.
Also of note this week is the return of Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter in Bill & Ted Face the Music, the 4K debut of Wesley Snipe’s cult favorite hero Blade, and a couple of fantastic Clint Eastwood special editions, Play Misty for Me and The Eiger Sanction.
Until next week movie lovers, stay safe!
DVD and Blu-ray Releases for Tuesday November 10, 2020
A Rainy Day in New York
Bay Area Godfathers
Bill & Ted Face the Music
Blade: The Iron Cross
Bletchley Circle: San Francisco
Burst City (1982)*
Bustin' Loose (1981)*
Direct to Video
Downton Abbey: The Complete Series
Girlfriends (1978)* - Criterion Collection
How to Make a Monster (1958)*
I Spit on Your Grave (1978) Three Disc Limited Edition
Kaiju Clash Double Feature: Reigo And Raiga
Le Choc Du Futur (aka The Shock Of The Future)
Love Express: The Disappearance of Walerian Borowczyk
Marona's Fantastic Tale
Maybe Next Year (2019)
One-Punch Man Season 2
Play Misty for Me (1971) - Special Edition
Return to Splatter Farm
Sesame Street: Old School (1969-1974) Volume 1
Sesame Street: Old School (1974-1979) Volume 2
The Beguiled (1971) - Special Edition
The Brides of Dracula (1960)*
The Eiger Sanction (1975)
The Odd Couple II (1998)*
The Office: The Complete Series
The Original Kings of Comedy (2000)
The Other Side of Madness (1971)*
The Stooge (1951)*
The War Game
War of the Colossal Beast (1958)*
We're No Angels (1955)*
WWE: Ruthless Aggression Vol. 1
You're Looking At Me Like I Live Here And I Don't
*Catalog Blu-ray debut