A solidly packed week begins with the new Jason Statham shark flick, The Meg. Former Navy Captain Jonas Taylor (Statham) is the best of the best when it comes to underwater rescue, even after a tragic event years ago that claimed the lives of half his crew. But when his ex-wife Lori (Jessica McNamee) is trapped in a submersible at the bottom of the ocean while working on the underwater research facility "Mana One", Taylor is the one who gets the call to rescue her. But something is lurking in the waters around the station, something huge and prehistoric.
The Meg is directed by Jon Turteltaub whose underrated National Treasure films are perfect examples of how to direct action. And he does it again here with The Meg, an adventure film packed with thrills, humor and spectacular shark effects. The stellar supporting cast includes Li Bingbing, Rainn Wilson, Cliff Curtis, and Ruby Rose, but the real star of the show is the huge Megalodon, which just looks amazing. And the film actually keeps things pretty family friendly as well keeping the gore to a minimum and sticking to the fun factor.
Next up is another film that is a stellar pick for family movie night, Alpha. Kodi Smit-McPhee stars as Keda, a prehistoric teen learning the ways of being a man from his father and tribespeople. But when he is separated from his tribe during a buffalo hunt, Keda must learn to survive along with a new friend, a wolf who was also injured and separated from his pack. Together the pair learn to rely on each other and become unlikely companions, facing countless dangers and overwhelming odds in order to find their way home before winter arrives.
Alpha is a beautifully filmed adventure that posits the origins of man’s relationship with dogs. Smit-McPhee has always been a fantastic actor since his breakthrough roles in The Road and Let Me In and Alpha again showcases his impressive talents. The whole film is in another language with subtitles, but much of the heavy work is done through facial expressions and situations. The scale of the adventure is huge, the photography is as stunning as the best National Geographic work, and the quality of the films storytelling is top notch.
Lastly this week is the new Mark Wahlberg film Mile 22. Wahlberg stars as James Silva, an operative in the CIA’s most covert and specialized unit. Along with his highly skilled tactical command team including Alice Kerr (Lauren Cohan), they must retrieve and transport an asset who holds top secret information that may save many lives. But between point A and point B stands legions of enemies determined to not let that asset reach his destination alive, and only Silva and his team stand in the way.
Mile 22 is directed by Peter Berg and is an action film that crackles with intensity and a lightning fast pace. Wahlberg is excellent as usual and plays someone a little different here as his character has a form of autism that makes him very good at his job, but also gives him unique obstacles to overcome. Lauren Cohan of The Walking Dead is also very good and proves that she is more than the character fans have grown to love and that she can handle the action just as well as a big action star like Wahlberg. Also throw in The Raid’s Iko Uwais, John Malkovich, and Ronda Rousey and you have a pretty great action film that stands out amongst the usual fare.
Also of note this week is the new action film The Marine 6: Close Quarters with Mike ‘The Miz’ Mizanin and Shawn Michaels, the crazy new sci fi actioner Sheborg, and the new comedy drama Juliet, Naked with Ethan Hawke, Rose Byrne and Chris O’Dowd.
Until next week movie lovers.
DVD and Blu-ray Releases for Tuesday November 13, 2018
Alpha - Director's Cut
Basic Instinct 2 - MVD Rewind Collection*
Bright Lights Big City - MVD Rewind Collection*
Dances with Wolves - Steelbook Edition
De Palma & De Niro: The Early Films*
Detective Dee: The Four Heavenly Kings
Elementary: The Sixth Season
Ernie Kovacs: The Centennial Edition
First Blood 4K
Gas Food Lodging*
Justice League: Throne of Atlantis 4K
Little Annie Rooney*
Maniac - Special Edition
Moonshine Meat Market Mayhem
Perversion Story a.k.a. One on Top of the Other*
Radar Men from the Moon
Rambo First Blood Part II 4K
Rambo III 4K
Ray Meets Helen
Robin Hood: The Complete Series
School Daze - 30th Anniversary*
School for Love a.k.a. Futures vedettes*
Scorpion: The Complete Series
Single White Female*
Some Like It Hot* - Criterion Collection
Star Trek Discovery: Season One
Take It Out in Trade*
The Adventures of Prince Achmed*
The Blue Dahlia*
The Children Act
The House of Forbidden Secrets
The Last Movie*
The Marine 6: Close Quarters
The Third Murder
The Wizard of Gore*
*Catalog Blu-ray debut