This week: Jason Statham stars in an update of a classic Charles Bronson flick, Anthony Hopkins feels a little possessed, a rip-off of Single White Female for millenials and the Blu-ray debut of a nail-biting '80s thriller starring Jeff Bridges and Glenn Close.
The Mechanic: This remake of 1972's The Mechanic stars Jason Statham as Arthur Bishop, an elite assassin with a talent for cleanly eliminating targets and making their deaths look like accidents, suicides or they have been done by someone else. After Bishop's mentor and friend, Harry (Donald Sutherland), is targeted for elimination by the same mysterious organization that assigns targets, Bishop reluctantly takes on Harry's son, Steve (Ben Foster) as his apprentice. The two make a lethal duo even though Steve is a little messy at first, but the bromance turns sour when Steve begins to suspect that Bishop knows a lot more about his father's death than he claims in this exciting remake that will make action fans grin ear to ear. Best extras: Both the DVD and Blu-ray contain deleted scenes and the "Tools of the Trade" featurette, which takes you inside the action. Blu-ray Bob's Verdict: Rent Me
The Rite: Being supposedly "inspired by true events" doesn't make this latest exorcism horror show any scarier. Michael Kovak (Colin O'Donoghue) is about to take his vows as a priest but questions his faith, so he is sent to observe Father Lucas Trevant (Anthony Hopkins) in Rome. Father Lucas seems to be Italy's go-to guy for exorcisms, but Michael doubts the elder priest's credibility until a possessed young girl dies and Michael visits Father Lucas only to find him possessed. It's great to see Anthony Hopkins get a little Hannibal when a possessed Father Lucas tries exploiting Michael's fears, but The Rite feels all wrong because someone made the asinine decision to make it PG-13. Demons from hell should be foul-mouthed abominations with a gleeful disregard for the MPAA (think of what Linda Blair shouted from her bed in The Exorcist), but Satan's minions seem sadly neutered here when censored to be safe enough for younger viewers. Best extras: Both the DVD and Blu-ray contain additional scenes; the BD adds an alternate ending and a featurette on the real-life priest who inspired the film. Blu-ray Bob's Verdict: Forget Me
The Roommate: The trailer made this look like a lame rehash of Single White Female for the millennial crowd and that is exactly what it is. Doe-eyed Sara (Minka Kelly) brings her vacant stare and pretty teeth to college and things are going swell until roommate Rebecca (Leighton Meester) starts displaying some red-flag obsessive tendencies. Rebecca threatens girls who get too close to her roommate and even tracks down Sara's ex and makes sure he doesn't linger around anymore. You've seen this all before in better psychosexual thrillers from the previous decade and the '90s, but someone thought a PG-13 version would be so "OMFG" for millennials. Instead, what we have are bloodless killings, supposed "sex" scenes with lots of close-ups of glossy lips and not much else, and a blandly beautiful lead actress (Kelly) who barely registers a pulse whether she is having PG-13 sex with pretty boy Cam Gigandet or her life is in danger. Best extras: Both the DVD and Blu-ray contain a commentary and deleted scenes; the BD adds two making-of featurettes and the frightening "The Next Generation of Stars" supplement that hypes a cast that is ideal for toothpaste commercials…not dramatic roles. Blu-ray Bob's Verdict: Forget Me
Jagged Edge (BD): Now here is a psychosexual thriller worth revisiting. This terrific 1985 film stars Jeff Bridges as a wealthy publishing magnate accused of murdering his wife and Glenn Close as a high-powered attorney who is hired to defend him. Close reluctantly takes the case and gradually succumbs to Bridges charms and her own desires. She works tirelessly to acquit her client/lover but outside of the courtroom she begins to suspect that maybe Bridges really is a manipulative, dangerous killer. All is revealed in the film's final sequence when a masked killer wielding the same kind of jagged-edge knife used in the killing confronts Close in her bedroom. Best extras: Sadly, this BD is bare. Blu-ray Bob's Verdict: Buy Me
Also New This Week: Beverly Hills Cop (BD), Deep Red (BD), The Hustler (BD), The Twilight Zone: Season 4 (BD), Vanishing on 7th Street, Diaboloque (BD), Daydream Nation, Money Train (BD) and Thor: Tales of Asgard