Volume CDLXXXVI- Portland Plays Itself
For the Week of 12/9/14
Videoport gives you a free movie every day. Plus, we give you a free movie every movie you buy from us (and not from some soulless corporation). It’s a lot of free movies, is what I’m saying.
Middle Aisle Monday! Take a free rental from the Science Fiction, Horror, Incredibly Strange, Popular Music, Mystery/Thriller, Animation, or Staff Picks sections with any other paid rental! OR Get any three non-new releases for seven days for $7.99!
.>>>Dennis suggests that Netfl*x is the Devil (once again). Yay—it’s the beginning of a new month! That means that everyone’s least favorite Internet conglomerate is stealing movies away from you. That’s right—every month, Netfl*x simply decides that you don’t need to see a whole bunch of movies any more. Why? Well, the Devil. Look, Videoport has all these movies and we’re not going to take them away from you. Not ever. Tent local. Rent Videoport. Here’s the list:
The Apostle (1997)
Audrey Rose (1977)
The Believers (1987)
Better than Chocolate (1999)
Blood & Chocolate (2007)
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (2008)
Coffee and Cigarettes (2003)
The Cold Light of Day (1996)
The Constant Gardener (2005)
Count Yorga, Vampire (1970)
Dirty Dancing (1987)
Double Indemnity (1944)
En la Cama (2005)
Event Horizon (1997)
Eye for an Eye (1996)
Fairy Tale: A True Story (1997)
First Knight (1995)
Five Easy Pieces (1970)
Funny Lady (1975)
The Ghost and Mrs Muir (1947)
I’m Not Rappaport (1996)
Joe Gould’s Secret (2000)
Joe Kidd (1972)
Johnny Mnemonic (1995)
King of the Hill (1993)
Lonely Hearts (2006)
Magic Trip (2011)
Mission: Impossible III (2006)
Minnie and Moskowitz (1971)
Monkey Shines (1988)
Mr. Mom (1983)
An Officer and a Gentleman (1982)
Opal Dream (2006)
The Paper Chase (1973)
The Pirates of Penzance (1983)
The Presidio (1988)
The Proposition (1998)
RoboCop 2 (1990)
School Ties (1992)
The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988)
Spice World (1998)
Star Trek: Generations (1994)
The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999)
They Might Be Giants (1971)
The Untouchables (1987)
The Vampire Lovers (1970)
Year of the Horse: Neil Young & Crazy Horse Live (1997)
Young Sherlock Holmes (1985)
Tough and Triassic Tuesday! Give yourself a free rental from the Action or Classics section with any other paid rental! OR Get any three non-new releases for seven days for $7.99!
>>> Emily S. Customer helps you keep it local. Videoport knows that it can be a challenge even for the most devoted BUY LOCAL advocates to put their money where their mouths are, especially during the hustle-bustle of the busy holiday season. Sure, you want to support independent businesses and keep our local economy robust, but how do you fit your ideals into your budget and imagination? We’re here to help with some BUY LOCAL gift ideas, and a little something extra just for you.
The regular renter: For the Portland-area film aficionado on your list, there’s no better gift than The Spirit of Videoport Future! Choose a gift certificate (three rentals for $10, six rentals for $20, or 10 rentals for $30) or take advantage of Videoport’s great savings plan when you add credit directly to their account ($20 buys $25 in rental credits, $30 buys $40). Either way, these rentals qualify for Videoport’s great daily specials, so your recipient can get 2-for-1 rentals every weekday or 3-for-2 rental weekends! Throw in a FREE copy of the VideoReport to give them great ideas for future rentals and great free movies every day.
The movie-night basket: Pick up a new or previously-viewed DVD movie or TV season at Videoport, pack it up with a bag of Little Lad’s herbal popcorn, and a box of concession candy (try Snowcaps, Junior Mints, or Twizzlers!) and you’ve got a great gift basket for folks who want to stay in on a cold Maine night. You’ll also get a little something extra for yourself: with every DVD purchase of $3.99* and up, Videoport gives you a free rental on your own account!
The connoisseur: Can’t find just the right gift for the fancy, fussy, or hard-to-satisfy cinophile on your list? Videoport is here to help! Videoport can special-order any film in print for a gift that’s sure to please. (And you get that free rental on your account, just for buying from Videoport!)
—Some themed ideas to get you started, whether you pick them up off the shelf or special-order to get just the right title. And remember, with each DVD purchase of $3.99* and up, you get a free rental!
Arrested Development: Give a whole season of the legendary dysfunctional-family sitcom along with “a whole thing of candy beans” from Jelly Belly! If you haven’t seen the series, this doesn’t make much sense, but if you have, this idea raises an eyebrow… at least.
Finding Nemo: Pixar’s heartwarming classic will please young and old alike, and so will the Swedish Fish and chocolate-caramel turtles you pick up to go along with it!
E.T.: The Extraterrestrial: Spielberg’s modern classic doesn’t need any sweetening, but how can you not pick up some packets of Reese’s Pieces to go with it?
Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory: Willy Wonka and candy go together like Gene Wilder and a terrifying smile, so take your pick. I especially recommend the Jelly Belly Bean Boozled collection, where you spin the wheel and take your chances. Will you taste a Tutti Frutti or Stinky Socks? Lime or Lawn Clippings? Licorice or Skunk Spray?
Chocolat and Like Water for Chocolate: For a delicious double-feature, pick these two romantic dramas, wrap them up with a few bars of Lake Champlain’s exquisite fair-trade, small-batch chocolate, and expect the winter to warm up fast.
*fine print and so on: offer subject to change, like everything else in life.
Wacky and Worldly Wednesday! You’ve got a free rental coming from the Comedy or Foreign Language sections with any other paid rental! OR Get any three non-new releases for seven days for $7.99!
>>> Dennis suggests Wanda (in Feature Drama.) There are miserable people, and then there’s Wanda, the heroine of this once-groundbreaking 1970 indie drama. Written and directed by star Barbara Loden (an actress married to director Elia Kazan, who never made another movie), it’s the almost unbearably grim story of a childish, incurious woman (Loden) who drifts into a cross-country crime spree with a completely worthless two-bit hood (Michael Higgins). Cited as a seminal feminist film, it’s one of the only films directed by a woman that was actually shown in theaters at the time of its release, and it’s still sought out by film students. As a viewing experience, it’s strangely numbing—Wanda, who has no self-esteem whatsoever, seems almost too dumb to sympathize with at first, reacting to the parade of misfortunes and abuse she suffers with an affectless tone and seemingly no regard for her own well-being. Improvisational in style, the movie stretches out in a series of grim, washed-out setpieces, with the poverty-stricken man’s Bonnie and Clyde driving across some of the most blighted-looking American landscape ever seen in movies (indeed, Wanda seems to start out and end her journey in a pit). Loden’s good in the role, although Wanda’s such a deliberate nothing that it’s hard to develop much feeling for her. Only at the end, after [shocker] Higgins’ big schemes leave her alone and adrift again, does Wanda seem to gather anything like self-awareness—even if the only glimmers of enlightenment she seems to have gleaned in the film’s haunting final shot have to do with how truly awful the world is for someone like her.
Thrifty Thursday! Rent one, get a free rental from any other section in the store! OR Get any three non-new releases for seven days for $7.99!
>>>Dennis suggests Louie (in Comedy). This show is a sitcom, I guess. It’s like Seinfeld! Louis CK is a standup comic! And this show follows his romantic and other misadventures as he tries to make a living and, you know, live his life. Oh, except that Louie will make you gawk in awe at the spectacle of a standup comic pondering the perpetually ineffable and baffling nature of his (and our) existence. While Jerry calls a guy a Soup Nazi and has wacky neighbors. Look, not picking on Seinfeld here. Seinfeld’s hilarious. Louie‘s a revelation—the result of one of the most brilliant comic minds in the world turning his gaze inward, and putting everything he sees there (no matter what) on the screen. It’s got huge laughs, of course (Louie is one of the funniest people in the history of the world), but it’s also got some episodes that will stick in your head like_I’ll say it—great works of art do. It’s a difficult show, a challenging show. And an intensely personal show—CK told FX he’d do a show for a lot less money than what they were offering if they’d let him do it on his own, without any input from the network whatsoever. And they bought it. This is one of the best shows in TV history. Yeah, I said it.
Free Kids Friday! One free rental from the Kids section, no other rental necessary! OR get any three non-new releases for a week for $7.99!
>>> It’s a free movie for kids! What, are you complaining about us giving kids a free movie? I pity you…
Having a Wild Weekend! Rent two movies, and get a third one for free from any section! OR get any three non-new releases for a week for $7.99!
>>> For Saturday, Dennis suggests taking a chance, for cryin’ out loud. There’s a free movie every day at Videoport. Just take home something you haven’t seen or even—something you haven’t even heard of before. Maybe it’s got someone you sort of like. Maybe it’s got a weird/sexy cover. Maybe the title is a grabber. You know what you have to lose? Nothing. You know what you have to gain? A movie experience that might change your life. It’s free. You’re welcome.
>>>For Sunday, Emily suggests Attack The Block (in Sci Fi/Fantasy). By now, you’ve either seen the new Star Wars trailer or you’re not the kind of person who gives a dang about Star Wars. Or maybe you’re on the fence. Maybe, like me, you’re someone who used to give a dang about Star Wars and got burned too many times. But the new trailer has me excited despite its complete plotlessness, almost despite myself, and here’s one good reason why: John Boyega. He’s the first face we see in the trailer, and he’s also the face of Attack the Block, Joe Cornish’s 2011 horror comedy (executive produced in part by Edgar Wright of Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz) in which creatures from outer space invade London on Guy Fawkes night. Moses (Boyega), the charismatic young leader of a ragged gang of street kids, has to gather all his wits and all his teenaged troops to battle the invading forces.The story and cinematography are strong, and Cornish (who also wrote the script) has an obvious affection for sci-fi and action that comes through in the rich, loving homages to the film’s genre predecessors. And he doesn’t shy away from allegory and social commentary that add a welcome level to the tale. But Boyega’s magnetism is the keystone of this film, giving Moses a charged mixture of authority, intelligence, and glimpses of tenderness that make everything we see — and everything we learn about him — not just plausible, but affecting.
New Releases this week at Videoport: Guardians Of The Galaxy (Sure, it’s a big blockbuster Marvel superhero movie and all that, but this completely-enjoyable sci-fi flick is nothing but fun, with Parks & Recreation’s Chris Pratt leading a rag-tag team of misfit weirdos. Written and directed by king weirdo James Gunn [Slither, Super], this is just as good as The Avengers—but weirder), Dolphin Tale 2 (The sequel to that adorable family film about some nice science fellows who make a robotic tail for a wounded dolphin! Just as adorable and nice and dolphin-y!), Frank (Michael Fassbender again proves his lack of ego, this time by playing the lead singer of an experimental indie rock band [alongside Maggie Gyllenhall]. Oh, and he wears a huge papier mache head through the entire movie), Dead Snow 2 (Everyone’s favorite Nazi zombie comedy gets a sequel, with some American Nazi zombie enthusiasts [including Martin Starr of Party Down] coming across the massive, snowy massacre from the first film. I wonder what happens?), I Origins (Squirrely scientist Michael Pitt [Hannibal] delves deeply into the secrets of the eyeball after a doomed love affair, and discovers all manner of things that might change the world in this trippy sci-fi romance), The Strange Color Of Your Body’s Tears (You should rent the first film by these directors [Amer] in order to see the sort of hyper-visual horror movie pastiche you’re in for here. Also, you should just rent Amer anyway, as it’s as awesomely weird and fascinating as I imagine this film—about a man seeking his missing wife through the hallucinogenic maze of his apartment building—will be), Calvary (The great Brendan Gleeson [In Bruges, The Guard] stars in this acclaimed Irish film about a dedicated priest trying to keep up the good work he typically does over a week where he keeps receiving mysterious, threatening letters), When The Game Stands Tall (Football fans rejoice! Here’s a true story about a coach [Jesus himself, Jim Caviezel] who took an obscure high school football team to a record 151-game winning streak. And who doesn’t love winners, right?), The Legend Of Korra-book 3 (This spinoff from the Avatar cartoon series is very good, by all accounts. You should rent it!), Drunk History- season 1 (This series seems like a dumb idea—comedian Derek Waters enlists his friends, plies them with booze, and has them drunkenly recite their favorite events from history, while some famous friends [like Don Cheadle, John C. Reilly, Will Ferrell, and more] act them out. It’s freaking hilarious. Trust me.)