Over­stuffed ‘X-Men: Apoca­lypse’ doesn’t im­press

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - FEATURES - By Amy Longs­dorf

Orig­i­nal “X-Men” helmer Bryan Singer is back in the direc­tor’s chair for “X-Men: Apoca­lypse” (2016, Fox, PG13, $30), a fol­low-up to his en­ter­tain­ing pre­quel “Days of Fu­ture Past.”

But even though James McAvoy and Michael Fass­ben­der re­turn as well, the thrill is gone. “Apoca­lypse” makes the same mis­take as nearly ev­ery other su­per­hero movie this year: too many char­ac­ters and too much de­struc­tion for de­struc­tion’s sake.

With the ex­cep­tion of a scene-steal­ing Evan Peters as Quick­sil­ver, the cast mem­bers, in­clud­ing Jen­nifer Lawrence, Rose Byrne and Os­car Isaac, fail to rise above the din. Ex­tras: gag reel, deleted scenes, fea­turettes and com­men­tary by Singer.

Also New To DVD Edge of Win­ter (2016, Sony, R, $20):

With roles in “Sui­cide Squad” and the “Robo­cop” re­make, Joel Kin­na­man demon­strated a knack for do­ing a lot with very lit­tle. But even though he’s the best thing about this tun­dra thriller, he still can’t make it worth­while. Kin­na­man stars as an un­sta­ble fa­ther who takes his kids (Percy Hynes White, Tom Hol­land) on a hunt­ing trip and, af­ter learn­ing they might be re­lo­cat­ing with their mom to Lon­don, be­gins to lose his mind. Even­tu­ally, the boys re­al­ize they’ll need to es­cape their dad’s grasp if they want to sur­vive. It’s at­mo­spheric but not much else. Ex­tras: none.

Ma Ma (2016, Os­cil­lo­scope, un­rated, $30):

Pene­lope Cruz is ra­di­ant as a sin­gle mother stricken with breast can­cer who, on the day she re­ceives her di­ag­no­sis, meets a man (Luis Tosar) whose wife and daugh­ter have been killed in a car ac­ci­dent. Slowly, her con­di­tion seems to im­prove as she’s buoyed along by waves of love and af­fec­tion from Tosar and her teenage son (Teo Planell). Direc­tor Julio Me­dem brings a brac­ing in­ti­macy to the scenes be­tween Cruz and Tosar. There are some gaffes, in­clud­ing a singing gy­ne­col­o­gist (Asier Etx­e­an­dia), but, in the end, “Ma Ma” has its heart in the right place. Ex­tras: fea­turette.

Find­ing Al­tamira (2016, Sony, un­rated, $20):

For his first fea­ture in more than a decade, “Char­i­ots of Fire” helmer Hugh Hud­son turns to the real-life saga of an am­a­teur arche­ol­o­gist (An­to­nio Ban­deras) in 19th cen­tury Spain who dis­cov­ers

cave paint­ings thought to be at least 10,000 years old. The find­ings set off a bat­tle be­tween rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the Catholic Church and the sci­en­tific com­mu­nity, all of whom at­tempt to dis­credit Ban­deras. It’s more than a lit­tle pre­dictable but when Hud­son shifts the fo­cus to the ways in which the dis­cov­ery im­pacts Ban­deras’ mar­riage to his de­vout wife (Gol­shifteh Fara­hani), the biopic fi­nally comes alive. Ex­tras: none.

Bill And Ted’s Ex­cel­lent Col­lec­tion (1989-1991, Shout Fac­tory, PG, $50):

Bill and Ted have fi­nally gone Blu and the re­sults are bo­da­cious, dude. In­cluded in this newly re­mas­tered set are “Bill and Ted’s Ex­cel­lent Ad­ven­ture” from 1989 and “Bill and Ted’s Bo­gus Jour­ney” from 1991. On the

verge of flunk­ing his­tory, our he­roes (Keanu Reeves, Alex Win­ter) are given a chance to time travel and hang out with Joan of Arc, Abe Lin­coln and Napoleon. In the se­quel, the air­heads clash not only with the Grim Reaper (Wil­liam Sadler) but with evil ro­bot ver­sions of them­selves. Sweet. Ex­tras: fea­turettes.

Masks (2011, ReelGore, un­rated, $40):

How much should you suf­fer for your art? Ger­man helmer An­dreas Marschall grap­ples with that ques­tion in this stylish hor­ror out­ing about a fledg­ling ac­tress (Susen Er­mich) who en­rolls in a Ber­lin act­ing school which prom­ises to push its stu­dents to their men­tal lim­its. A homage to Dario Ar­gento’s “Sus­pira,” this film, while over­long, scores points for its mes­mer­iz­ing score by Se­bas­tian Lev­er­mann, some freaky plot twists and a night­mar­ish vibe which has a way of get­ting un­der your skin. You won’t eas­ily for­get this one. Ex­tras: deleted scenes, fea­turettes and a CD of the score.

Two Films By Dou­glas Sirk (1946-1947, Co­hen, un­rated, $40):

No­body knew his way around a good, juicy melo­drama like Sirk, the man be­hind “Mag­nif­i­cent Ob­ses­sion” and “Imi­ta­tion of Life.” Be­fore those land­marks, the Ger­man émi­gré di­rected a pair of rarely seen thrillers that are heavy on whiteknuckle sus­pense. Ge­orge San­ders stars in “A Scan­dal in Paris” as an el­e­gant thief turned Paris po­lice chief while Lu­cille Ball toplines “Lured” as a dance hall girl who is used by the po­lice as bait to catch a se­rial killer. Both films have been beau­ti­fully re­stored for their Blu-ray bows. Ex­tras: com­men­taries by film his­to­ri­ans.

High Noon: Sig­na­ture Edi­tion (1952, Olive, un­rated, $20):

Run­ning just 85 min­utes, this taut western puts you in the shoes of a man who be­comes in­creas­ingly des­per­ate to beat the clock and stay alive. Gary Cooper stars as Sher­iff Will Kane, who, on his wed­ding day dis­cov­ers that a scoundrel he ar­rested years ear­lier is out of prison and hun­gry for re­venge. With the out­law set to ar­rive on the noon train, Cooper goes around town, ask­ing for help from his “friends.” Help is not forth­com­ing and the mood around Hadleyville turns grim. More than five decades later, “High Noon” is still damn near per­fect. Ex­tras: fea­turettes.

Where The Side­walk Ends (1950, Twi­light Time, un­rated, $30):

It’s amaz­ing how much ground direc­tor Otto Preminger cov­ers with this 95-minute thriller, now on Blu-ray. It’s a char­ac­ter study of a vi­o­lent, trou­bled cop (Dana An­drews) who ac­ci­den­tally kills a thug (Craig Stevens) and then at­tempts to cover it up. It’s also a crack­er­jack pro­ce­dural about a crew of crafty po­lice of­fi­cers solv­ing the mur­der. And fi­nally it’s a deeply af­fect­ing ro­mance about An­drews be­com­ing a bet­ter man un­der the in­flu­ence of a lov­ing wo­man (Gene Tier­ney). Like Preminger’s “Laura,” it’s a stun­ner. Ex­tras: com­men­tary.


An­gel’s (Ben Hardy) mu­ta­tion gave him large wings and the abil­ity to fly. An­gel’s agility, strength and re­flexes make him a lethal hand-to-hand com­bat­ant.

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