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Featuring Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson and Anthony Mackie, the wickedly funny action film Pain & Gain has muscled its way to DVD and Blu-ray from Paramount Home Media. M&C is getting in on the dark comedy laughs by giving away a Pain & Gain Prize Pack – which includes a Mark Wahlberg autographed (o-sleeve) Blu-ray edition of the film, a bullet blender and a duffle bag! Called “outrageously entertaining” (Marlow Stern, Newsweek), “hilarious, smart, clever and fresh” (Chris Nashawaty, Entertainment Weekly) and “the guy flick of 2013” (Stephen Rebello, Playboy), director Michael Bay’s hilarious dark comedy Pain & Gain is a film for the real Doers. Based on an unbelievable true story, Pain & Gain sees Wahlberg, Johnson and »
- Patrick Luce
Each week we take a look at the good, the bad and the ugly of the home entertainment offerings, reviewing and rating the films and the special features packed onto the discs.
Here are the essential picks from the releases out on the 17th of June 2013.
Release of the Week
Terence Malick’s Tree of Life divided critics but it was a typically illuminated and unconventional return to the big screen for one of cinema’s enigmas. The relative rush of production on To The Wonder was welcomed by Malick’s fans and for the most part the director does not let them down.
The film follows four people whose intertwining love songs become the heart and soul of the film. There is the evocation of the free spirited love of discovery with Ben Affleck’s tryst with Olga Kurylenko, the cooling and disharmony of »
- Jon Lyus
Director: Sacha Gervasi
Running Time: 98 minutes
Extras: Audio Commentary with Sacha Gervasi and Stephen Rebello, Deleted Scene, Becoming the Master: From Hopkins to Hitchcock, Obsessed with Hitchcock, Sacha Gervasi’s Behind the Scenes Cell Phone Footage (15 cert.), Hitchcock Cell Phone PSA, The Story, The Cast, Danny Elfman Maestro, Hitch and Alma, Remembering Hitchcock
Alfred Hitchcock led a life of intrigue and alleged perversion, with his penchant for working his leading ladies into the ground should they dismiss his advances explored in the excellent The Girl starring Toby Jones. Hitchcock instead focuses on the making of the director’s shocker Psycho (1960) taking particular care in dissecting the relationship with his wife Alma (Mirren), and star Vivien Leigh (Johansson). Sadly the unnecessary tangents the story takes result in a picture as misshapen as Anthony Hopkins prosthetic gut.
Puzzlingly Hitchcock »
- Sam Carey
The great innovators and popular entertainers of previous generations often fade from sight from they retire or die. A new generation discovers them afresh, either on their own, or someone has done some digging. In the case of the famed director Alfred Hitchcock, he has spawned a cottage industry with recent biographies and films. Hitchcock, with Anthony Hopkins nearly unrecognizable under the latex, is based on Stephen Rebello’s Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho, and portrays a particular point of view about the Englishman.
Psycho is currently his best known work, especially with this week’s debut of Bates Motel on cable but critics tend to pick his other, earlier works as among his best. Sure, this thriller is terrifying and exciting and surprising thanks to the Robert Bloch story, direction, and performances. And the making of the film is worthy of exploration. Director Sacha Gervasi has a »
- Robert Greenberger
Legendary director Alfred Hitchcock has many connections to this week. First of all, this past Tuesday was “National Alfred Hitchcock Day,” during which cinema fans revisit the master’s masterworks. Also, the biopic Hitchcock released on Blu-ray and DVD earlier this week. Easily the most famous and most recognizable Hitchcock film was the 1960 thriller Psycho, which helped revitalize his career and changed the face of horror movies in general. Considering that Hitchcock tells the story behind Psycho, and it’s based on the book “Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho” (whose author, Stephen Rebello, performs the commentary here), it seems fitting to look at this classic thriller. Rebello’s commentary is available on the 2010 Blu-ray and subsequent DVD releases. Psycho (1960) Commentators: Stephen Rebello (Hitchcock historian) 1. His 47th film, Psycho is Hitchcock’s most famous movie and his biggest financial success. 2. The opening titles were created by Saul Bass, who served as storyboard artist and pictorial consultant »
- Kevin Carr
“Hitchcock” hits the shelves this week on Blu-Ray and DVD formats. The cast also includes Helen Mirren, Scarlett Johansson, Toni Collette and Jessica Biel in this film about the famed suspenseful director.
The movie is a fictional account of director Alfred Hitchcock attempting to stay relevant in Hollywood after his successful films such as “North by Northwest,” and “Vertigo.” With the media focused on younger directors, Hitchcock felt the need to impress movie audiences with a risky venture called “Psycho.” And this film looks into the relationship of his wife, Alma Reville, and the struggles trying to “Psycho” made.
Director Sacha Gervasi made a good movie with great actors of Hopkins and Mirren as the famous couple. The movie blends with humor, drama and a little bit of romance about Hitchcock’s life during the filming of 1960’s “Psycho. »
- Gig Patta
Hitchcock hits Blu-ray and DVD today (look for a review soon), and to celebrate its arrival, we have a look inside the home video package for you, which should help you determine whether or not you should stop at that lonely motel at the side of the road.
Oscar winners Anthony Hopkins and Helen Mirren are spellbinding in this provocative story directed by Sacha Gervasi about the making of one of cinema’s most iconic films. Plagued by both a reckless ego and nagging self-doubt, Hollywood legend Alfred Hitchcock (Hopkins) becomes obsessed with a grisly murder story that the studios won’t back. Determined, he risks his reputation, his home, and even the love of his wife, Alma (Mirren), as he sets out to make the film. Ultimately, Hitch wins Alma over, and the two collaborate to create an enduring masterpiece – Psycho. Also starring Scarlett Johansson, Toni Collette, »
- Uncle Creepy
March 12 is National Hitchcock Day, celebrating the Master of Suspense and his oeuvre of films. The Hitch has been enjoying a renaissance of late. 2012 saw two films about him (albeit not entirely flattering portraits of the director): "Hitchcock," starring Anthony Hopkins in the title role and Helen Mirren as wife Alma Reville, and "The Girl," starring Toby Jones and Sienna Miller as Tippi Hedren. (Our Toh! comparison between "Hitchcock" and the making of "Psycho" as described in the Stephen Rebello book upon which the film is based, is here; our coverage of Hedren talking about her experience working on "The Birds" is here.) Last year also marked a historical turning point in Sight & Sound's Top 100 Films of All Time, as Hithcock's brilliant psychological romance and portrait of deleterious obsession "Vertigo" took the No. 1 spot, dethroning "Citizen Kane." That film, starring James Stewart and Kim Novack, was part of a Universal Blu-ray box set released, »
- Beth Hanna
It’s unclear why March 12th is National Alfred Hitchcock Day. It’s not his birthday or anything — he was born on a Friday the 13th in August of 1899 — but it doesn’t really matter because every square on the calendar is a good one for celebrating the filmmaker’s incredible work. But how to do it? Curling up with your favorite Hitch movie is a solid choice, but if you’re looking for something a bit more exotic, here are a few suggestions (complete with where to find his movies online if you want to stick to simplicity). 1. Check Out His (Recently Unearthed) Earliest Surviving Movie 2. Try to Spot All of His Cameos 3. Take a Trip on a Train 4. Watch Martin Scorsese Shoot Three Unfilmed Pages of a Hitchcock Script: 5. Read 6 Filmmaking Tips From the Master of Suspense 6. And Then Learn How Hitch Actually Defined “Suspense” 7. Spy On Your Neighbors After Breaking Your Leg 8. Watch Rear Window »
- Scott Beggs
Everyone celebrates President's Day, Valentine's Day, and the sort, but it's the cool kids who know that tomorrow, March 12th, is National Alfred Hitchcock Day!
Need a reminder why Alfred Hitchcock is still the legendary master of suspense? Read on!
Hitchcock, the recent film starring Sir Anthony Hopkins, was based on Stephen Rebello’s bestselling book, Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho. We asked Stephen to write something special for Hitchcock Day, and he came up with “6 Great Reasons Why Hitchcock Is Still the Master of Suspense.”
Psycho. Vertigo. North by Northwest. The Birds. If Alfred Hitchcock had directed nothing more than that astonishing quartet, he’d still be considered the maestro of creating nail-biting suspense, romantic intrigue, and unforgettable thrills. But that incredible run of movies, released in theaters from 1958 to 1963, represents only a drop in the bloody bucket of Hitchcock’s masterworks, »
- Uncle Creepy
This week: Ang Lee's "Life of Pi," a spiritual survival tale about a boy and a tiger lost at sea on a lifeboat, took home more Oscars (four) than any other movie this year, including Best Director, Best Cinematography, Best Visual Effects and Best Original Score.
Also new this week is the making-of-"Psycho" biopic "Hitchcock" starring Anthony Hopkins and Helen Mirren, the animated kids' flick "Rise of the Guardians" and the sobering dramedy "Smashed" with Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Aaron Paul.
Box Office: $117 million
Rotten Tomatoes: 88% Fresh
Storyline: Ang Lee directs this existential adventure based on the book by Yann Martel that tells the story of Pi Patel, the son of an Indian zookeeper who hitches a ride with his family aboard a freighter bound for Canada to begin a new life there. When a brutal storm hits and the ship goes down, Pi »
- Robert DeSalvo
The latest attempt to bring Alfred Hitchcock's life to the screen paints the Master as a crafty hoodwinker triumphing over drab studio execs
F Scott Fitzgerald claimed that, back in 1920, he'd tried to persuade Dw Griffith that the film industry was a wonderful subject for the cinema. Griffith laughed at the idea, but not for the first time Fitzgerald was proved right. He went on to write a series of stories and a great unfinished novel on Hollywood, and since the silent era there has been no end to the making of movies about movie-making. Particular interest has recently been shown in Alfred Hitchcock, one of only two movie directors whose faces are immediately recognisable to popular audiences the world over. The other, of course, is Hitchcock's fellow working-class Londoner, Charlie Chaplin.
- Philip French
When presenting a feature film focusing on the life of one of the most renowned filmmakers of all time, there is certainly an element of pressure on any director taking on such a task – yet for Sacha Gervasi, it’s a project he looked to revel in, and we caught up with the British filmmaker ahead of the release of Hitchcock – hitting our screens this coming Friday.
Gervasi, whose only previous work is that of rock documentary Anvil: The Story of Anvil, admits that his low-key debut was in fact the deciding factor in persuading both Anthony Hopkins and Helen Mirren to get on board, as he also tells us of his delight at working alongside such a cast, also consisting of Scarlett Johansson. He also discusses the importance of Alma Reville, and his next project…
- Stefan Pape
Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
How much should likeness play into a performance? This is a question I found myself wrestling with when watching Sacha Gervasi’s (Anvil! The Story of Anvil) biopic of arguably the greatest filmmaker who has ever lived, The Master of Suspense himself, Alfred Hitchcock.
Even if the script were in place – which it isn’t – there’s a troubling extravagance in the peculiarly Oscar-nominated make-up job Anthony Hopkins is subjected to, which renders him virtually unrecognisable, but also stifles his performance and prevents it from amounting to anything more than Anthony Hopkins playing himself while trying to play Alfred Hitchcock.
Though the film centers around the relationship between Hitch and his wife, Alma Reville (Helen Mirren), as they begin production on the director’s most famous film, Psycho, Gervasi eschews an intimate examination of the director’s methods and personality in favour of documenting the childish »
- Shaun Munro
Stars: Anthony Hopkins, Helen Mirren, Scarlett Johansson, Danny Huston, Toni Collette, Michael Wincott, Jessica Biel, James D’Arcy, Kurtwood Smith, Ralph Macchio | Written by John J. McLaughlin | Directed by Sacha Gervasi
Films focusing on directors are a relatively rare thing and especially when they chronicle those who actually existed in real-life. The reasoning for this is likely that they just don’t have the most exciting stories to tell when it comes down to it, I certainly can’t imagine Jj Abrams: One Lucky Bastard to be hitting the big screen any time soon for example.
Saying this though, in the space of a couple of months, we have been treated to not one but two takes on the quirks of Alfred Hitchcock, thriller maker par excellence who knew how to generate electricity on screen but also created sparks off of it. The recent HBO production The Girl »
- Ian Loring
Directed by Sacha Gervasi.
Hitchcock is based on Stephen Rebello‘s book Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho, but if you are looking forward to watching this film simply because you want a behind the scenes insight into how the classic 1960s horror film was made, you are in for a pleasant surprise. This film delivers so much more than just an insight into the psyche of the iconic director whilst creating his most successful film; it also tackles Hitchcock’s intricate relationship with his wife and (not always credited) writing partner Alma, played superbly by Helen Mirren (The Queen).
The film »
Seems like it's always a one-two punch with Alfred Hitchcock. It's only been a couple of months since the release of The Girl, based on Donald Spoto's 1983 biography and centring on its saddest, grimiest revelations – namely, Hitchcock's harassment of Tippi Hedren as they made The Birds and Marnie. The film offered the first of our two Hitchcocks in the squat and toadly form of Toby Jones, who gamely captured Hitchcock's waddle and his occasional reversion in accent to a Dickensian riverside guttersnipe, and dwelt more often than not in the "macabre" end of our understanding of the director.
- John Patterson
Director: Sacha Gervasi
Running Time: 98 minutes
It’s always going to be a difficult task putting together a film about one of the greatest directors of our time and Alfred Hitchcock is one intriguing enigma to try and unravel. However, I left Hitchcock with an unexpected glow of satisfaction as it uncovers not only his obsessional side but also the man who fought personal demons on his way to seek perfection, and most importantly for any artist, it was a challenge he had to take on.
It’s unashamedly obvious to see that Hitch wasn’t exactly a likeable soul, as his obsession with his leading ladies often over-shadowed other elements to his film-making but… »
- Dan Bullock
To celebrate the February 8th release of Hitchcock, we’ve got three merchandise packs to give away! Each pack includes a t-shirt, pen, CD soundtrack, cup and saucer, and a copy of Alfred Hitchcock and The Making of Psycho on which the film is based…as pictured, a quite tremendous prize.
Hitchcock is a love story about one of the most influential filmmakers of the last century, Alfred Hitchcock, and his wife and partner Alma Reville. The film takes place during the making of Hitchcock’s seminal movie Psycho and our review will be here in a week!
Directed by Sacha Gervasi (Anvil: The Story of Anvil), Hitchcock stars Academy Award® winner Anthony Hopkins (The Remains of the Day; The Silence of the Lambs) as Alfred Hitchcock, Academy Award® winner Helen Mirren (The Debt; The Queen) as Alma Reville and Scarlett Johansson (Marvel Avengers Assemble; Lost in Translation) as Janet Leigh. »
- Dan Bullock
To celebrate the February 8 release of Hitchcock, we’ve got three merchandise packs to give away! Each pack includes a t-shirt, pen, CD soundtrack, cup and saucer, and a copy of Alfred Hitchcock and The Making of Psycho on which the film is based.
Hitchcock is a love story about one of the most influential filmmakers of the last century, Alfred Hitchcock, and his wife and partner Alma Reville. The film takes place during the making of Hitchcock’s seminal movie Psycho.
Directed by Sacha Gervasi (Anvil: The Story of Anvil), Hitchcock stars Academy Award® winner Anthony Hopkins (The Remains of the Day; The Silence of the Lambs) as Alfred Hitchcock, Academy Award® winner Helen Mirren (The Debt; The Queen) as Alma Reville and Scarlett Johansson (Marvel Avengers Assemble; Lost in Translation) as Janet Leigh. The cast also includes: James D’Arcy (Cloud Atlas, W.E.) as Anthony Perkins, Jessica Biel »
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