Another Tuesday, another round of new releases straight from the theatre and of classics getting a new lease on life. This time of year is always great for hiding in doors, getting comfy on the couch and checking out what’s available to distract you from the crap weather. Unless you live in Australia and then I just hate you…with jealousy. This week, another comic book hero gets the movie treatment, Tim Burton gets animated and a creepy classic comes to high definition.
Dredd – I’m sorry to see this movie wasn’t seen by many when it was in theatres. But, I get it. One-note characters like Judge Dredd aren’t as engaging, relatable or sympathetic to an audience. But, what if that “one-note” was Karl Urban playing the icon British comic book character perfectly as a bad-ass instrument of justice? OK, a little cheesy but no less true. If you’re looking for a crazy action movie with intense visuals, over-the-top fight scenes and a little bit of the gory, you could do a lot worse. It’s a good action movie not pretending to be anything else.
Frankenweenie – prior to Nightmare Before Christmas, and before Johnny Depp was in all his movies, a young filmmaker named Tim Burton made a short movie about a young Victor Frankenstein and the dog he brought back to life. Now Burton has decided to remake his own film, and we’re better for it. Visually, it’s amazing with the old school black and white, classically creepy shadowing and tones, and the unbelievably expressive stop-motion characters. As Burton’s love letter to old monster movies, it’s almost a game trying to find all the references, but what wasn’t hard to see was the love the director has for these type of movies…and a boy and his undead dog.
Cape Fear (1962) – You may remember the remake from the early 90’s with Robert DeNiro, Nick Nolte and Jessica Lange. Director Martin Scorsese did a great job telling his version of a convict looking to exact his revenge on the witness (and his family) that put him jail. The original, which is being released on Blu-ray today, is definitely worth a look with Robert Mitchum, Gregory Peck and Telly Savalas telling the tale. Though the more modern one feels creepier, this I think is a better told film.
If you were going to watch one of these, what would it be? Why?