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: “Babylon”
Director Damien Chazelle has enjoyed great success over the past decade with films like “Whiplash,” “La La Land” and “First Man,” but that streak has finally come to an end with his latest movie, “Babylon.” A sprawling historical epic about Hollywood’s transition from silent films to talkies in the late 1920s, “Babylon” is an ambitious but messy picture filled with incredible highs and devastating lows. The whole thing plays like “Singin’ in the Rain” meets “Boogie Nights,” with Chazelle fully leaning into the absurdity and depravity of that era of Wild West filmmaking. There are some fantastic sequences throughout, as well as an excellent score by Justin Hurwitz, but “Babylon” wears out its welcome long before its three-hour runtime draws to a close, culminating in a pretentious, self-congratulatory ending that leaves such a bad taste that it nearly undoes all the good that precedes it.
Extras include a behind-the-scenes look at making the film and some deleted scenes. FINAL VERDICT: RENT
Also Out This Week:
“M3GAN” — It’s hard to believe that this low-budget horror film from Blumhouse Productions made nearly $100 million at the domestic box office because it’s easily one of the worst genre films in recent memory. Aside from the fact that it’s not very scary or suspenseful, “M3GAN” is plagued by some dull performances (namely, Allison Williams) and a poorly written script that’s as predictable as it is laughable. Most horror films generally contain some pretty ridiculous leaps in logic to make their premises work, but “M3GAN” is filled with so many plot holes and inconsistencies that it becomes unbearable to sit through. Though “M3GAN” certainly had the makings of a silly, self-aware horror comedy, in reality, it’s nothing more than a watered-down “Chucky” rip-off with none of the fun. Extras include a trio of behind-the-scenes featurettes. FINAL VERDICT: SKIP
“Dragonslayer” — This 1981 dark fantasy film has attained cult status over the years among genre fans, but that hardly seems like enough to warrant the movie receiving a 4K restoration, especially over more deserving films. Though the 4K transfer, created under the supervision of director/co-writer Matthew Robbins, is certainly an improvement upon previous releases, “Dragonslayer” is such an ugly movie visually that it doesn’t shine as brightly as others from that era. The film itself is just as dull, hampered by a lame protagonist and plodding story that do little to engage, while the special effects (though impressive for that time) show the movie’s age. “Dragonslayer” isn’t the worst film to come out of the 1980s fantasy boom, but like many from that period, it’s utterly forgettable. Extras include an audio commentary by Robbins and frequent collaborator Guillermo del Toro, as well as a collection of behind-the-scenes featurettes. FINAL VERDICT: SKIP
Disclosure: Bullz-Eye was provided a copy of the above titles for review purposes.
Tags: Babylon, Blu Tuesday, Dragonslayer, M3GAN, new Blu-rays