Kurt Russell, Jennifer Jason Leigh, and Bruce Dern in Quentin Taratino's 'The Hateful Eight'

‘The Hateful Eight’ on Showtime Anytime

The Hateful Eight, the eighth feature by Quentin Tarantino, is something strange and audacious even for a filmmaker whose films are rarely short of either. It’s a vivid widescreen western epic that runs nearly three hours yet plays like a chamber piece, largely contained within the intimate quarters of a stagecoach stopover during a blizzard […]

Al Pacino is Cuban thug turned Miami drug lord Tony Montana in Brian De Palma's 'Scarface'

‘Scarface’ – Say hello to my little friend on VOD and Blu-ray/DVD

Brian De Palma’s Scarface (1983), ostensibly a remake of the Howard Hawks gangster classic, moves the iconic rise and fall crime opera from the tommy-gun gangster street battles of the prohibition era to the cocaine wars of Florida in the eighties. In the process, De Palma, screenwriter Oliver Stone, and star Al Pacino carved out […]

Kathryn Bigelow's 'Near Dark.'

‘Near Dark’ – There’s a price for the night – Blu-ray and DVD

They hunt by night, picking off stray hitchhikers, wandering loners and anyone else unlucky enough to stray into their path. They keep to back roads and lonely towns of the American southwest. They are a feral clan, more a pack than a gang. They are family. And they feed off the blood of humans. To […]

Clifton Webb and Gene Tierney in the 1944 film noir 'Laura' directed by Otto Preminger

‘Laura’ – The silkiest film noir of all on Netflix and Amazon Prime

I’m a big fan of film noir, those shadowy, often hardboiled crime dramas a morally-tarnished urban world of the forties and fifties. Laura (1944) is elegance incarnate in a genre known for its hard edge, the sleekest, silkiest noir of all. Gene Tierney is the cultured beauty whose murder investigation opens the film and Dana […]

The animated feature 'When Marnie Was There' from Japan's Studio Ghibli

‘When Marnie Was There’ on DVD and Blu-ray

I hate to think that When Marnie Was There may be the last film to come out of Japan’s Studio Ghibli, the great animation studio created by filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki (Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away). Miyazaki didn’t direct Marnie—Studio Ghibli animator-turned director Hiromasa Yonebayashi helms this lovely tale—but the studio’s dedication to the art of hand […]