Blu Tuesday is a weekly column where we review the newest Blu-ray and 4K releases, along with a brief rundown of the included bonus material, to determine whether they’re worth buying, renting or skipping.
Pick of the Week: “Bullet Train”
Director David Leitch’s latest film gives off major “Smokin’ Aces” vibes, and not in a good way. The 2006 action comedy is a fun but flawed barrage of overstimulation that quickly gets drowned out by its own noise. “Bullet Train” suffers from that same sensory overload and is a bit of a mess narratively as well. The first half is particularly bad as it stumbles over itself trying to juggle numerous characters, plotlines and flashbacks, many of which don’t really matter in the grand scheme of things. However, Brad Pitt, Brian Tyree Henry and Aaron Taylor Johnson are all good fun in their roles, while the action set pieces are largely entertaining, especially the more playful brawls involving Pitt’s character. It’s not quite enough to land “Bullet Train” in the win column, but it does give viewers something to appreciate amidst all the chaos.
Extras include an audio commentary by Leitch, writer Zak Olkewicz and producer Kelly McCormick, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at making the film. FINAL VERDICT: RENT
Also Out This Week:
“Bodies Bodies Bodies” — This A24 horror comedy had the potential to be great, but while the movie —which plays like Agatha Christie’s “And Then There Were None” for the TikTok crowd — has its moments, it never fully capitalizes on that promise. For starters, none of the characters are very likable, and although that’s kind of the point of the film’s satirical bent, it’s also a pretty damning commentary on the whole of Gen Z. The movie also isn’t nearly as funny as it needs to be — Rachel Sennott is the lone standout and the only cast member who seems to understand what director Halina Reijn is going for — while the deaths don’t carry much weight, emotionally or suspense-wise. “Bodies Bodies Bodies” is certainly one of A24’s better horror titles, but compared to other generational horror films like “Scream,” it lacks real bite. Extras include an audio commentary by Reijn, a making-of featurette and some deleted scenes. FINAL VERDICT: RENT
“Orphan: First Kill” — Isabelle Fuhrman was 12 years old when she originated the role of Esther in the first “Orphan” movie, so it’s pretty insane that anyone thought it would be a good idea to make a prequel to that film using the exact same actress more than a decade later. Try as they might to make Fuhrman appear younger (mostly through body doubles and practical camera tricks), the illusion simply doesn’t work because she looks every bit the adult that she is in real life. As a result, “Orphan: First Kill” requires an even bigger suspension of disbelief than its predecessor, and still then it’s hard to take anything seriously. However, the movie is so over-the-top ridiculous, especially once the big twist is revealed, that it pretty much embraces its absurdity. That doesn’t make “Orphan: First Kill” any less of a disappointment, or quite frankly any less pointless, but you have to admire the balls on director William Brent Bell for taking his shot, even if he misses horribly. FINAL VERDICT: SKIP
“Fall” — If “Bodies Bodies Bodies” wasn’t already enough Gen Z idiocy for one week, then “Fall” takes things to the next level with yet another example of why millennials are the dumbest generation. This low-budget survival thriller follows a pair of thrill-seeking besties who, one year after witnessing their friend fall to his death during a rock-climbing expedition, decide to climb a 2,000-foot, rusted-out TV tower and get marooned at the top. Nothing about this film works nearly as well as it should. The writing is awful, with the characters making one bad decision after the next like they’re stuck in a slasher movie, while the sluggish pacing strips what little tension director Scott Mann is able to pry from the moronic premise. “Fall” could (and really should) have been a much better movie, but it’s consistently hindered by its own choices. Extras include an audio commentary by Mann and producer James Harris, as well as a making-of featurette. FINAL VERDICT: SKIP
“Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank” — Most movies that are targeted toward kids are pretty bad, but “Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank” goes above and beyond in its awfulness. Not only does it have one of the worst titles in recent memory, but it’s completely devoid of any laughs, which is especially damning when you realize that the film is meant to be a loose animated remake of the 1974 Mel Brooks comedy “Blazing Saddles.” (Brooks even voices one of the supporting characters in an apparent show of support.) It’s hard to believe that Disney veteran Rob Minkoff (“The Lion King”) was involved in this dull turd of a movie because it has no redeeming qualities. The writing is lazy, the animation is subpar, and the attempts at Brooks-esque humor fall embarrassingly flat. In fact, the film’s only saving grace is that parents might get a good nap out of the deal. Extras include some behind-the-scenes featurettes. FINAL VERDICT: SKIP
Disclosure: Bullz-Eye was provided a copy of the above titles for review purposes.