Peter Weller

Blu-ray Review: Frustrating Release For ‘Star Trek Into Darkness’

Star Trek Into Darkness

CHICAGO – When you’ve got a movie as controversial among its core audience as J.J. Abrams’ “Star Trek Into Darkness,” why would you court even more with a frustrating Blu-ray release pattern, one that essentially tries to milk the people who like the film for as much cash as conceivably possible?

Film Review: ‘Star Trek Into Darkness’ Satisfies with Entertaining Adventure

CHICAGOJ.J. Abrams’ “Star Trek Into Darkness” is like a really solid mid-season episode of a great TV series. Entertaining, for sure, but lacking the energy of a premiere or the stakes of a finale. It leaves fans wondering what’s next in the franchise, which will surely make Paramount happy, but doesn’t stand on its own like the truly great part twos (“The Dark Knight,” “The Empire Strikes Back”).

Blu-ray Review: David Cronenberg’s Twisted Vision of William S. Burrough’s ‘Naked Lunch’

Naked Lunch

CHICAGO – I adore David Cronenberg. He’s one of the most important filmmakers of his generation from “Videodrome” (also available in a great Criterion release) to “The Fly” to “Dead Ringers” to “The History of Violence.” He matters. And yet I’ve never been in love with “Naked Lunch,” recently released in Criterion Blu-ray and DVD. It’s one of those movies that I always admired but never loved. It’s about all that could be done with a Burroughs’ book, one that clearly could not be directly adapted into film, but I find it more interesting as a filmmaking exercise than an enjoyable piece of work on its own. Having said that, the Criterion treatment of it is expectedly stellar.

Blu-ray Review: ‘The Dark Knight Returns’ Works From Great Source But Lacks Soul

Batman: The Dark Knight Returns -- Part 1

CHICAGO – Is it possible that not all comic books are ones that can be adapted? Couldn’t some of them only really work on the page where the reader can fill in the grit and grime of a dark story like Frank Miller’s “The Dark Knight Returns” in ways that a literal reading in animated form just can’t do? You see what i’m getting at. I love the source material for “Batman: The Dark Knight Returns — Part 1” and there are enough interesting ideas that survived intact the journey from page to screen but the adaptation of Miller’s work doesn’t hold a candle to just reading the original.

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