Video Library New Releases

Casey St. Charnez - August 8, 2014

New DVDs:
Agnes Browne (1999-Irish) C-92min. D: Anjelica Huston. Anjelica Huston, Marion O’Dwyer. Comedy set in 1967 Dublin about a new widow and her seven children, age 2-14, facing tough times but shining through. Huston’s second directorial effort, following Bastard Out of Carolina. [NR]

Divergent (2014) C-139min. D: Neil Burger. Shailene Woodley, Kate Winslet. In a future Chicago, a teen discovers she won’t fit into one of five pre-arranged destinies, and is, instead, a dangerous exception to the rule. An underground rebellion recruits her to help them fight the rigid social system. First film from the book series by Veronica Roth (available at the SFe Public Library) and adapted by screenwriter Evan Daugherty (the new TMNT, and nephew of a favorite Video Library supporter, Scottie Daugherty). [PG-13]

Good Bye Lenin! (2003-German) C-121min. D,CoSc: Wolfgang Becker. Daniel Bruhl, Katrin Sass. An East German widow has a heart attack and falls into a coma, awakening eight months later to a world no longer Red. Her son tries to keep her from finding out the truth and freaking out that the Berlin Wall has fallen. Award-winning coming-of-age movie set in 1989 amidst the fall of Communism. [R]

I’ll Follow You Down (2013-Canada) C-98min. D,Sc: Richie Mehta. Haley Joel Osment, Gillian Anderson, Rufus Sewell, Victor Garber. The son of a physicist who suddenly disappeared years ago is now a grown-up himself, driven to discover where his dad went. Time travel is one possible solution to the mystery. Check out the cast—the son is that kid who saw dead people in The Sixth Sense, his mom is Agent Scully of The X-Files, and the vanished dad is the amnesiac from Dark City. [NR]

Mad About Men (1954-English) C-82min. D: Ralph Thomas. Glynis Johns, Donald Sniden, Anne Crawford, Margaret Rutherford. A prim schoolteacher changes place with her relative, who happens to be a mermaid. Sequel to Miranda (see below). [NR]

Mermaid (2007-Russia) C-115min. D,Sc: Anna Melikyan. Masha Shalaeva. A girl from a seaside village goes to Moscow and falls in love. Problem is, she has taken a vow of silence and must find nonvocal ways of making him return her love-- similar to the Czech opera Rusalka. Title is almost literal…but not quite. This isn’t  Disney. [NR]

Miranda (1948-English) B&W-80min. D: Ken Annakin. Glynis Johns, Griffith Jones, Googie Withers, David Tomlinson, Margaret Rutherford. A Cornish mermaid sets her sights on a landbound mortal. Unfortunately, he’s married, and besides, two other men are on her tail. So to speak. Delightful sex comedy done the way only the British can do it. Most intriguing to see Johns and Tomlinson together, 16 years before they were Mr. and Mrs. Banks in Mary Poppins. [NR]

Need for Speed (2014) C-131min. D: Scott Waugh. Aaron Paul, Dominic Cooper, Imogen Poots. Wrongfully imprisoned ex-con joins a cross-country race, fueled by revenge upon the man who framed him. Based on the popular video games, executive-produced by Steven Spielberg, and starring Adrian Paul (Jesse Pinkman on Breaking Bad). [PG-13]

Piano in a Factory, The (2011-China) C-111min. D: Zhang Meng. The music-obsessed daughter of a divorcing couple announces she will go with the parent who gives her a piano. Some slapstick buoyed by social commentary ensues. (Thanks, Kay & Tony Marks for donating this DVD).  

Pope’s Toilet, The (2008-Uruguay-France-Brazil) C-97min. CoD: Cesar Charlone & Enrique Fernandez. In 1988 Uruguay, Pope John Paul II is coming to town, and tens of thousands of people are expected to see him. One fellow thinks he has a get-rich-scheme in the installation of a pay toilet right in front of his house. (Thanks, Kay & Tony Marks for donating this DVD).

Rose Marie (1935) B&W-111min. D: W.S. Van Dyke. Jeanette MacDonald, Allan Jones, James Stewart. From the 1926 Rudolf Friml operetta set in the Canadian Rockies, with an opera star hunting her brother, an escaped convict, with the aid of a Mountie. Source of the stars’rsquo; signature “Indian Love Call.”

12 O’Clock Boys (2014) C-76min. D: Lofty Nathan. Vivid documentary about young urban dirt bikers in Baltimore, and especially one, a boy with a dream. Three years in the making, and an official film festival selection of SxSW, Sundance, and Hot Docs, among others. [NR]

New Blu-ray:
Divergent (2014)

New TV:
Californication (2014/Showtime) David Duchovny. Seventh and final season. 11 episodes, 2 discs.

Last Tango in Halifax (2014/BBC) Season 2, 6 episodes, 2 discs.