DVD Releases – week of Aug 16 2020

STARTING THIS WEEK (New releases):

“THE OUTPOST”: CNN anchor Jake Tapper’s best seller aboit the Battle of Kamdesh makes an intense and excellent movie in the hands of film critic-turned-filmmaker (and West Point graduate and military veteran) Rod Lurie. It tells the true story of a U.S. unit stationed in the midst of three mountains in Afghanistan, where the soldiers become targets of the Taliban and defend themselves in a monumental battle that largely was — as indicated by the subtitle of Tapper’s book — “An Untold Story of American Valor.” Scott Eastwood (Clint’s son), Orlando Bloom and Caleb Landry Jones (whose real-life counterpart, Ty Carter, is among the veterans featured in the film) lead the cast, which also includes other relatives of famous individuals: Milo Gibson (son of Mel), James Jagger (son of Mick), Will Attenborough (grandson of actor-director Richard) and Scott Alda Coffey (grandson of Alan Alda). *** (R: AS, P, GV) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)

“BATWOMAN: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON”: With the exit of star Ruby Rose, The CW will be installing a new Batwoman in the series’ second season, so here’s a chance to see the DC Comics-based show in its original form. Often while wearing a terrific costume, Rose does an extremely and commendably physical job of playing Kate Kane, who assumes the absent Batman’s mission of protecting Gotham from criminal elements — a pursuit that often puts her in conflict with her father (Dougray Scott), a military veteran turned private-security-firm chief. Rachel Skarsten gets to vamp it up wonderfully as Kate’s half-sister, who turns out to be Batwoman’s chief enemy. And if you think you recognize the voice of Gotham gossip Vesper Fairchild … yes, it’s Rachel Maddow. *** (Not rated: AS, P, V) (Also on Blu-ray)

“MILITARY WIVES”: The Oscar-winning drama “Coming Home” dealt in part with how spouses handled being separated from their military mates during times of war, and so does this comedy-drama based on a true story that also inspired a documentary series. Kristin Scott Thomas and Sharon Horgan (“Catastrophe”) play two of the wives who join a choir, along with many other women in the same situation, while their husbands are serving in Afghanistan. Jason Flemyng and Greg Wise (the husband of Emma Thompson) also appear in the film, which — like a number of other recent movies — have had their principal exhibition so far in On Demand, given how many theaters were closed due to the coronavirus pandemic. *** (PG-13: AS, P) (Also on On Demand)

“BIOGRAPHY: KENNY ROGERS”: In a sad irony, this profile of music icon Rogers was awaiting its A&E Network telecast at the time he passed away last March. While his first successes on the charts were largely pop tunes with the group he fronted, the First Edition, Rogers secured enduring success as a solo act by gravitating toward country music — which he supported with frequent concert tours and acting in projects such as the TV movies inspired by his single “The Gambler.” Dolly Parton (with whom he collaborated famously on “Islands in the Stream”), Lionel Richie, Reba McEntire, Little Big Town and Chris Stapleton are among those commenting on the life and legend of Rogers. Excerpts from his 2017 farewell concert are included. *** (Not rated)

“BLUE BLOODS: THE TENTH SEASON”: New York’s law-and-order Reagan family has a new member, thanks to son Jamie (Will Estes) marrying former police partner Eddie (Vanessa Ray), but it also gets another one — someone the relatives didn’t even know existed — in the course of this latest season of the perennially well-written and well-acted CBS drama series. In other developments, Frank (Tom Selleck) has to deal with alleged police brutality, and Erin (Bridget Moynahan) weighs a professional opportunity at the behest of the new mayor (guest star Dylan Walsh), and Danny and Baez (Donnie Wahlberg, Marisa Ramirez) are teamed uncomfortably with a Texas Ranger (guest star Lyle Lovett) on a case. Treat Williams reprises his guest role as Frank’s ex-partner. Len Cariou, Sami Gayle, Gregory Jbara, Robert Clohessy and Abigail Hawk also star. *** (Not rated: AS, P, V)

“ELVIS: THE CLASSIC BROADCASTS”: Though much of the iconic Elvis Presley’s image was built on popular movies he made — in which he typically also sang several songs — he also proved what a dynamo he was as a music performer in television appearances that spanned his stardom. This release compiles many of those, from his rarely seen guest shots of 1950s variety programs to celebrated concert specials he did in the ‘60s and ‘70s. Admittedly, the content reflects the physical changes Presley went through over the years, but the evidence here leaves no room for dispute that he gave his all to melodies in genres ranging from gospel to pop. *** (Not rated)

FAMILY VIEWING GUIDE KEY: AS, adult situations; N, nudity; P, profanity; V, violence; GV, particularly graphic violence.

COMING SOON (Upcoming releases):







Jay Bobbin

Jay Bobbin

Jay Bobbin has decades of experience covering the television and movie businesses, winning Tribune Media Services’ Crown Jewel Award in 2008 for his performance in the company. Over those many years of interviewing and writing, he has spoken with everyone from Robert De Niro and John Travolta to Paul McCartney and Tony Bennett … from Meryl Streep and Julie Andrews to Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood.

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