New Releases 09/10/13

Top Hits
Star Trek: Into Darkness (sci-fi/ adventure, Chris Pine. Rotten Tomatoes: 87%. Metacritic: 72. From A.O. Scott’s New York Times review: “Star Trek Into Darkness does not quite stand by itself as a satisfying movie, but then again it doesn’t need to. It is the leg of a journey that has, remarkably, lasted for nearly half a century. I hope we never tire of Kirk, Spock and the others.” Read more…)

Peeples (comedy, Craig Robinson. Rotten Tomatoes: 35%. Metacritic: 52. From Andy Webster’s New York Times review: “Tyler Perry ‘presents’ Tina Gordon Chism’s Peeples, but this pleasing ensemble comedy, while manifesting Perry trademarks, is very much Ms. Chism’s own. And that is to its benefit.” Read more…)

The Lords of Salem (horror, Sheri Moon Zombie. Rotten Tomatoes: 47%. Metacritic: 57. From Neil Genzlinger’s New York Times review: “Rob Zombie, the heavy-metal rocker turned film director, has a splattery reputation from efforts like House of 1,000 Corpses, a film defined by its body count. But his latest, The Lords of Salem, is relatively restrained as horror films go. And yes, in this genre, a film whose opening minutes include a circle of naked witches dancing around a bonfire can still be described as ‘restrained.'” Read more…)

New Blu-Ray
Star Trek: Into Darkness
Homeland: Season 2

New British
Blandings: Series 1 (comedy, Timothy Spall)

New TV
Homeland: Season 2
Elementary: Season 1
Scandal: Season 2
Revolution: Season 1

New Documentaries
Chasing Ice (documentary, ecology, climate change, James Balog. Rotten Tomatoes: 96%. Metacritic: 75. A New York Times Critic’s Pick. From Neil Genzlinger’s Times review: “The film, full of stunning images in addition to being timely, documents the work of James Balog, an environmental photographer who, spurred by an assignment from National Geographic, became determined to capture a visual representation of climate change. As he tells an audience at one point in the film, “We have a problem of perception, because not enough people get it yet.'” Read more…)

We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks (politics, secrecy, Julian Assange. Rotten Tomatoes: 95%. Metacritic: 76. From Nicolas Rapold’s New York Times review: “We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks describes what happened when Julian Assange le the WikiLeaks project to publish sensitive documents from anonymous contributors, and when a lonely Army private, Bradley Manning, took the opportunity WikiLeaks created to air the military’s dirty laundry (and much else besides). It’s a tale of absolutist ideals that seemed somehow to curdle and of private torment in search of an outlet, with drastic results.” Read more…)

New Music DVDs
A Band Called Death (Black rock, proto-punk, underground music. Rotten Tomatoes: 96%. Metacritic: 77. From Nicolas Rapold’s New York Times review: “‘Because death is real’ is how David Hackney once explained his idea for the precociously punk band he and his brothers had formed as teenagers in 1970s Detroit. The grim reaper does rear his head in Mark Christopher Covino and Jeff Howlett’s music documentary A Band Called Death, but part of the charm and warmth of the film lies in the abiding family bonds and winning decency of the group’s surviving members. Mom set the ground rules for when they practiced at home, and years later the brothers still attribute a missed record deal to an unshakable sense of fraternal solidarity. The Hackneys [Dannis on drums, Bobby on bass, David on guitar] probably needed that unity as young black men playing hard-rocking ‘white boy music’ at an R&B moment.” Read more…)