The Small Screen

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Posted February 5, 2009 in The Small Screen

Nights in Rodanthe
All you really need to know about Nights in Rodanthe, starring Diane Lane and Richard Gere as a middle-aged couple who fall in love while staying at an inn on an island off the coast of North Carolina, is that it’s based on a novel by Nicholas Sparks (The Notebook). This tells you that there will undying love, people saying unexpectedly wise things about life, and inevitably, some tears. Although it all creates a tolerably romantic feel, you can’t help but wonder if Gere is still pissed off at Lane for cheating on him in 2002’s memorable Unfaithful. Contains a brief, but right-feeling cameo by James Franco, proving again that he can play more mature than stoner.

 

Running Time: 97 minutes

Home Entertainment House: Warner Bros.

 

Clint Eastwood: American Icon Collection

You never realize what Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine owes to Clint Eastwood until you watch some of Eastwood’s earlier films. Young Clint smolders with the same kind of steely “I don’t care” gruffness that masks how much he really does, in fact, care. In this new collection of Eastwood’s catalogue, his directorial debut, Play Misty For Me, puts this on display as he plays a radio DJ who gets more than he bargained for when he has (so he thinks) a one-night-stand with a hot little number of a fan. This clingy (read: psycho) woman, played with maniacal brilliance by Jessica Walter, had a certain hand in inspiring other films like Fatal Attraction, but Eastwood really only gets into trouble because, deep down, he’s really a nice guy. 

Box Set contains: Play Misty For Me, The Eiger Sanction, Coogan’s Bluff, The Beguiled

Home Entertainment House: Universal

 

Friday The 13th Uncut

Jason was domitable once, when he drowned at 13, and never again. In the original, a lot of bad coincidences joined a batch of Camp Crystal Lake counselors (those “randy teenagers”), things like a full moon, Jason’s birthday, and the jinxed calendar day itself. But what makes this a classic slasher film is that it’s not just a slasher film, it’s got nuances like the demented village idiot Ralph warning of certain doom, Harry Manfredini’s never-emulated musical score, and Jason’s mother, who may or may not be possessed by the spirit of her son. This film had a budget of $600,000 but went on to gross $78 million, and this Uncut edition includes a cast reunion (the sole survivor Adrienne King’s hair is exactly the same) and commentary.

 

Running time: 95 minutes

Home Entertainment House: Paramount


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