New on DVD

Waterloo Region Record - - NIGHTLIFE - Rick Bent­ley

An­other re­boot of the Spi­der-Man fran­chise, a doc­u­men­tary about an im­por­tant school ac­tiv­ity and a TV se­ries that looks at life af­ter death are among new ti­tles be­ing re­leased Oct. 17.

“Spi­der-Man: Home­com­ing”: In­stead of mak­ing this a tale of Spi­der-Man driven by the over­whelm­ing guilt Peter feels be­cause of the death of his Un­cle Ben, the lat­est Spi­der-Man is more like a 14-year-old with an ex­pen­sive toy. This isn’t a spec­tac­u­lar tale of how he learns to chan­nel his feel­ings into pos­i­tive en­ergy but more about break­ing dates, miss­ing Spanish quizzes, let­ting down friends and be­ing a so­cial out­cast. There’s so much time spent with Peter out of the suit that the movie could have been ti­tled “Peter Parker: Home­com­ing.”

The film has the oblig­a­tory Easter eggs for the true be­liev­ers who love Mar­vel Comics, and it does a great job of con­nect­ing the dots between the char­ac­ter and the Mar­vel Uni­verse-based pro­duc­tions that have dom­i­nated the box of­fice. Mix that with some good ac­tion se­quences and a solid vil­lain and “Spi­der-Man: Home­com­ing” can be counted as a win for Mar­vel. It’s a win by a nar­row mar­gin. “Step”: Any doc­u­men­tary that shows how young peo­ple are be­ing given a chance to bet­ter them­selves through spe­cial pro­grams comes through as both in­spi­ra­tional and de­press­ing. Those be­hind such pro­grams can never re­ceive enough praise for the work be­ing done in com­mu­ni­ties across the coun­try. This is tainted with a sense of melan­choly that it takes spe­cial pro­grams for such change to hap­pen. Chil­dren should al­ways be a pri­or­ity, but they aren’t, and that’s when pro­grams like the one spot­lighted in “Step” by di­rec­tor Amanda Lipitz try to fill the void.

The di­rec­tor tells the sto­ries of how the young women are deal­ing with col­lege ap­pli­ca­tions while be­ing part of a com­pet­i­tive step dance pro­gram.

There are mi­nor problems with the film that aren’t un­ex­pected with a new film­maker. Lipitz’s pas­sion to show what can hap­pen when women of all gen­er­a­tions fo­cus on one goal is a tale that should be shouted on ev­ery street cor­ner. She suc­ceeds, but it just should be shouted with a few more de­tails. That was the one area where the di­rec­tor needed to step up.

“The Good Place”: This NBC com­edy star­ring Kris­ten Bell as a wo­man who be­lieves she has died and got­ten into “the good place” by mis­take would be a fun watch even with­out the huge re­veal in the last episode. Ted Dan­son is wickedly funny as the string puller in this world. Also new on DVD Oct. 17 “Lady Mac­beth”: Wo­man (Florence Pugh) liv­ing in a love­less mar­riage to a man twice her age starts an af­fair with a young worker on her hus­band’s es­tate.

“Shot Caller”: Ex-con faces deadly de­ci­sions af­ter he gets out of prison.

“Sa­mu­rai Jack: The Com­plete Se­ries”: Set in­cludes all 62 episodes of the crit­i­cally ac­claimed an­i­mated se­ries.

“Green Acres: The Com­plete Se­ries”: Ed­die Al­bert and Eva Ga­bor star in the TV com­edy about a city cou­ple try­ing to ad­just to coun­try life.

“Jus­tice”: United States Marshall must stop a group de­ter­mined to start an­other Civil War.

“Spir­ited Away”: Hayao Miyazaki’s fan­tasy an­i­mated ad­ven­ture is be­ing rere­leased.

“Girls Trip”: Four friends go on a wild va­ca­tion to New Or­leans. Queen Lat­i­fah stars.

“Mar­cella: Sea­son 1”: De­tec­tive Sergeant Mar­cella Back­land (Anna Friel) re­joins the Lon­don Metropoli­tan Po­lice fol­low­ing the abrupt end of her mar­riage.

“Bat­man vs. Two-Face”: The an­i­mated tale is based on the 1966 TV se­ries star­ring Adam West.

“Ernie Ko­vacs: Take a Good Look ? The De­fin­i­tive Col­lec­tion”: The DVD in­cludes episodes of the unique talk show hosted by Ko­vacs that fea­tures guests rang­ing from baseball’s Rogers Hornsby to White House But­ler Alonzo Fields.

“PJ Masks: Hello Christ­mas!”: When three six year olds put on their pa­ja­mas and ac­ti­vate their an­i­mal amulets, they be­come su­per­heroes.

“Three O’Clock High”: Writ­ing as­sign­ment puts a stu­dent in line for a fight af­ter school.

“The Wilde Wed­ding”: Glenn Close stars in this story of a movie star cel­e­brat­ing her fourth wed­ding.

“Amer­i­can Gods”: Man finds him­self liv­ing in a world of old and new gods.

“An­cient Aliens: Sea­son 10, Vol­ume 1”: Se­ries re­veals new ev­i­dence of ex­trater­res­trial in­ter­ven­tion on Earth.

“Howl’s Mov­ing Cas­tle”: The Academy Award-nom­i­nated film from Hayao Miyazaki is avail­able on Blu-ray.


Tom Hol­land in a scene from “Spi­der-Man: Home­com­ing,” now out on DVD.

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