Alright folks, we begin the pre-Christmas release schedule! This week is packed with all kinds of good stuff, but let’s kick it off with a brilliant new but familiar horror flick, Candyman. In the now-gentrified Chicago neighborhood where the infamous Cabrini Green apartments once stood, artist Anthony McCoy (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) moves in with his girlfriend, art gallery director Brianna Cartwright (Teyonah Parris). After a chance encounter with a local sparks his interest, Anthony starts becoming obsessed with the urban legend of Candyman. Using the macabre story for inspiration for a new series of paintings, Anthony unwittingly opens up the secrets of the past that may threaten the lives of those around him as well as his own sanity.

Director Nia DaCosta does some pretty amazing work here crafting a sequel to the brilliant 1992 Bernard Rose film of the same name, while also expanding on the legend and backstory of Candyman and taking the character into all new territory. DaCosta and co-writers Jordan Peele and Win Rosenfeld make this iteration of Candyman delve even deeper into social issues as well of racial tension and gentrification, expanding on the themes already present in the original film. The cast is first rate, the writing is brilliant, and the visuals are striking. Candyman is a must see for horror fans and a phenomenal new addition to the genre.

Next up we shift gears into the more family friendly arena with Jungle Cruise. Based on the Disney ride of the same name, Jungle Cruise follows English feminist and doctor of botany, Dr Lily Houghton (Emily Blunt) as she embarks on an adventure with her brother MacGregor (Jack Whitehall) and an arrogant, wisecracking riverboat skipper, Captain Frank Wolff (Dwayne Johnson) through the deep jungles of the Amazon River to find a mythical tree that can cure any illness. But on their heels throughout the journey is the evil Prince Joachim (Jesse Plemons) who wants to find the tree for his own nefarious plans.

Disney really does seem to have the formula down to a science now. When I first heard of this movie being developed, I didn’t have much hope for it, seeing as how it was based on an animatronic amusement park ride. But thanks to some smart writing, great production design and the genius casting of Blunt, Johnson and Plemons, Jungle Cruise is a rollicking good time for the whole family. Kids will enjoy the constant action and fun while there is plenty of humor for the adults and the action is fun for them as well. Definitely an Indiana Jones style adventure, Jungle Cruise is sure to become another Disney classic.

Also of note this week is the massive new Middle Earth Ultimate Collector's Edition 4K/Blu-ray box set that is a must own if you don’t already have them, a stunning new Criterion Box Set of all of Jet Li’s classic Once Upon a Time in China films, and the latest Nicolas Cage weird-fest, Prisoners of the Ghostland.

Until next week movie lovers, stay safe!                                                                                                              

DVD and Blu-ray Releases for Tuesday November 16, 2021

Among the Living (1941)*

Angels Hard as They Come (1971)*

Bury Me an Angel (1971)*

Candyman (2021)

Candyman 2-Movie Collection

Caveat (2021)

Christmas with the Kranks (2004)

Cryptozoo (2021)

Ema (2019)

Fast & Furious 9-Movie Collection

Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (2001) 4K

Future Boy Conan (1978)*

Game 6 (2005)*

It's a Wonderful Life (1946) 75th Anniversary Edition

Jungle Cruise (2021)

Kevin Can F**K Himself: Season 1

M. Butterfly (1993)*

Mad Max Anthology 4K

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985) 4K

Mad Max: The Road Warrior (1981) 4K

Maniac Cop 2 (1990) 4K

Maniac Cop 3: Badge Of Silence (1992) 4K

Middle Earth Ultimate Collector's Edition 4K

Modern Vampires (1998)*

Mulholland Drive (2001) - Criterion Collection

National Lampoon's Movie Madness (1983)*

National Velvet (1944)*

Never Back Down: Revolt (2021)

Night Has a Thousand Eyes (1948)*

Once Upon a Time in China: The Complete Films (1991-1997) - Criterion Collection

Our Ladies (2019)

Planes, Trains & Automobiles (1987) Steelbook Edition

Prisoners of the Ghostland (2020)

Ragtime (1981)*

Ran (1985) 4K Steelbook

Sailor Suit and Machine Gun (1981)*

Slow Dancing in the Big City (1978)*

The Accused (1949)*

The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart (2020)

The Brady Bunch Movie (1995) and A Very Brady Sequel (1996) Collection*

The Deceivers (1988)*

The Evil Dead Groovy Collection 4K

The Eyes of Tammy Faye (2021)

The Lost Leonardo (2021)

The Mystery of Picasso (1956)*

Vanilla Sky (2001) - Paramount Presents

Yakuza Princess (2021)

*New to Blu-ray