Wonder Woman 1984 (2020) [Blu-Ray/DVD/Digital]

Director Patty Jenkins’ “Wonder Woman” movie series has been very good so far. What’s kept the series from being great is the films’ lack of really interesting super villains that can make Diana’s heroic quest difficult. “Wonder Woman 1984” is a very good movie that has its sights set on paying tribute to the iconic heroine, and in those respects it’s a very good follow up to the original film—save for some glaring flaws that keep it from being a great follow up.

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The Suicide Squad (2021)

Director David Ayer’s take on DC Comics’ “Suicide Squad” is one of the classic examples of studio interference, and how it can destroy a potentially great project. Director/Writer James Gunn has a talent for highlighting the more appealing and exciting elements of more underdog comic book characters, and with “The Suicide Squad” he shows us how a lot of the time allowing a director to just create and show audiences their vision can be beneficial for everyone.

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You Have to See This! The Wraith (1986)

“A wraith, man! A ghost! A evil spirit – and it ain’t cool!”

The Wraith” is one of those B movies from the eighties that is so inexplicable and so bizarre, but so damn satisfying. When I was a kid I spent a lot of my time watching antenna TV (Grade A TV Junkie right here!) and whatever movie was on that peaked my interest, even a little, I would be there front and center. “The Wraith” is one of the movies that caught my attention right away (showing prominently on WPIX Channel 11). It wasn’t only for the revenge tale involving an undead anti-hero, but also for the titular Wraith, who just looks so bad ass

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Five Favorite “The Lord of the Rings” Characters

This week Amazon released their first image for the upcoming “Lord of the Rings” series. In what I assume they hope will fill the hole “Game of Thrones” left in its wake, the new series is promising to be epic in scale and (hopefully) continue the stories of J.R.R Tolkien’s Middle Earth, as well as re-invigorate the property for fans (I saw all three films when they debuted in theaters) that were left disappointed by “The Hobbit” prequels.

In celebration, I listed my five favorite characters from the Peter Jackson “Lord of the Rings” trilogy.

If you have your own choices, feel free to let me know in the comments!

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Flight to Mars (1951): Special Edition [Blu-Ray]

Well, say what you want about “Flight to Mars” (reaching its 70th anniversary this year) but damn it, they make good on their promise in the title. There is definitely a flight to mars. It’s just a long, drawn out, monotonous, tedious flight to mars involving four boring male characters and one woman whose duties involve getting aggressively hit on by the spaceship’s captain, taking notes, and making the men coffee.

In Sp-a-a-a-a-ce!

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Mortal Kombat (2021) [Blu-Ray/Digital]

Despite being one of the most violent games ever released (of its time), in the nineties studios worked hard to water down the series for a younger audience. With that, they effectively killed off any cinematic prospects for over twenty years after 1997’s embarrassing “Mortal Kombat: Annihilation.” Now in 2021, Director Simon McQuoid brings us a new vision for “Mortal Kombat” that’s faithful in many respects, and embraces the gore and grue of the original games. It’s not a perfect movie by any stretch, but it’s a damn good martial arts fantasy when all is said and done.

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Space Jam: A New Legacy (2021)

It’s kind of ironic that the villain of the sequel to 1996’s “Space Jam” is named Al G. Rhythm, the physical manifestation of an algorithm who decides the fate of not just star Lebron James but of the Looney Tunes. “A New Legacy” (Or “Space Jam 2”) feels like it was directed not by a person, but a committee of people that followed algorithms about what was appealing to modern audiences, and what was “hip.” The film doubles as a two hour EPK for the HBO Max Streaming Service. “A New Legacy” premieres on the aforementioned streaming service (and theaters), so Warner takes full advantage of exploiting every single (repeat: every single) IP that they have at their disposal.

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Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971) [4K UHD/Blu-Ray/Digital HD]

Celebrating its 50th anniversary June 30th of 2021, “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory” is a movie that hasn’t aged since 1971 and shows no sign of aging any time soon. Even with the Tim Burton second adaptation and the upcoming prequel, Mel Stuart’s cinematic version of the Roald Dahl fantasy book still remains on the top of the heap. Even looking at it without nostalgia lens, the Gene Wilder fantasy is excellent in every sense of the word, while Wilder’s titular performance is unrivaled.

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