New Blu-ray Releases Red Sparrow

(Welcome to Not Dead Yet, a feature dedicated to new Blu-ray releases and what special features you should be excited about. Because yes, some of us still like to own physical copies of our movies.)

It’s time again to round-up the best Blu-rays available right now, and in the immediate future. This week, we have the Jennifer Lawrence spy-thriller Red Sparrow, the very funny Game Night, the surprisingly good horror-sequel Strangers: Prey At Night, and the so-dumb-it’s-fun action flick The Hurricane Heist.

Here are the new Blu-ray releases and their special features you should check out this week, and beyond.

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Rob Cohen interview

Director Rob Cohen has been shooting car chases, explosions, and shootouts for years now. The director behind xXx, The Fast and the Furious, and The Boy Next Door enters new territory with his latest, The Hurricane Heist, which has its shootouts and chases unfold during a category five hurricane that brings brothers, played by Toby Kebbell (A Monster Calls) and Ryan Kwanten (True Blood), together.

It’s an entirely self-aware disaster movie and exactly what a moviegoer would expect from something called The Hurricane Heist, which Cohen takes as a compliment. We recently spoke to Cohen about the challenges of making the effects-heavy film, defying physics, his thoughts on critics, the evolution of the Fast and Furious franchise, and more.

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Final Fast and Furious film

Rob Cohen, the filmmaker who launched the Fast and Furious franchise with 2001’s The Fast and the Furious, hasn’t returned to the series since. But the filmmaker isn’t entirely against the idea of coming back again. In a new interview, Cohen claims that when the day comes for a final Fast and Furious film, he’d like to be the one to direct it.

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hurricane heist trailer

Yes, this is a movie called The Hurricane Heist, emphasis on the added importance of “The.” Yes, it stars Maggie Grace as a tough FBI agent doing her best Charlize Theron impression, while Toby Kebbell puts on a vaguely Southern accent as a meteorologist who’s afraid of hurricanes. And yes, the Scorpions’ “Rock You Like a Hurricane” does start playing halfway through the trailer of this high-octane natural disaster B-movie. But no, sadly, this movie is not about the actual act of stealing hurricanes — though it is one step away from Nicholas Cage popping up to declare that he will — but about a heist that happens to take place during a deadly storm that forces the evacuation of an entire city.

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Fast and Furious 9 director

Earlier this week, we wrote about how there’s a chance The Fate of the Furious director F. Gary Gray might not return for the upcoming Fast 9. But this is one of Universal’s biggest moneymakers, so somebody has to take on the tremendous challenge of leading the massive production as the series barrels toward its planned ending. Who could successfully shoulder the weight of a long-running film franchise yet still deliver an entertaining spectacle in a quick and efficient manner? I’ve come up with 10 filmmakers I think are up to the task, so read on for my list of who could be the Fast and Furious 9 director.
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the running man alternate versions

Before Paul Michael Glaser directed The Running Man, four other directors worked on Stephen King‘s big screen adaptation. Here are the three The Running Man alternate versions we almost saw.

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Furious 8 director

Last week we heard Furious 8 was having a bit of trouble kicking into gear. One of the biggest sticking points was the question of who would steer the film, since scheduling conflicts put previous franchise directors Justin Lin and James Wan out of the running.

Now Vin Diesel‘s latest Facebook posts suggest two possibilities: Rob Cohen, who helmed the original The Fast and the Furious, and Diesel himself. Meanwhile, studio Universal is reportedly eyeing Ericson Core (of the Point Break remake) and Louis Leterrier (Now You See Me). Let’s run down the possibilities for the Furious 8 director after the jump.  Read More »

Rob Cohen to Direct Action Thriller ‘Risk’

rob-cohen-1

Briefly: No, we haven’t gone back to the days where studios were actively developing board game properties, and this Risk doesn’t have any of the strategic hallmarks you might be thinking of. (Though after The Lego Movie hits this weekend, we might see a resurgence of toy and game developments.)

This film is an action picture that blends “psychological suspense and action,” and features “a brilliant thief who is released early from prison to execute a nearly impossible art heist.” We don’t have any casting, but Rob Cohen (The Fast and the Furious, Stealth) is directing from a script by Eric Harlacher, who has a few TV movie credits to his name.

We don’t know much more, but Cohen told Variety, “I’ve always wanted to make a sophisticated caper/thriller in the style of ‘Topkapi,’ ‘To Catch A Thief’ and ‘The Hot Rock,’ with smart characters and sexy European backgrounds.  When I read the script of ‘Risk’, I knew this was it.” Those thrillers, especially Topkapi, are pretty great, and if he can capture some of that magic, more power to him.

Jennifer Lopez

In addition to moving Warcraft away from Star Wars Episode VII, Universal dated a slew of major movies on this Thanksgiving Eve. They are as follows:

  • An Untitled Michael Mann film starring Chris Hemsworth will be released January 16, 2015.
  • Jennifer Lopez‘s thriller The Boy Next Door opens January 23, 3015.
  • The long delayed epic Seventh Son gets the new release date of February 6, 2015.
  • Andy Muschietti‘s reboot of The Mummy hits April 22, 2016.

Read brief descriptions below. Read More »

Road House

Survey a bunch of movie fans on the most rewatchable films of the Eighties and Road House is guaranteed to come up. The classic-bad-action film starring Patrick Swayze as a no-nonsense bouncer features some of the most cheesy dialogue and fighting you’ve ever seen in a major motion picture. But thanks in part to Swayze’s charisma, the film also has its charms. It’s one of those movies, that is extremely hard to turn off when happened across on cable.

That said, the premise of Road House isn’t what brings people back. It’s how it’s played, which is why this latest piece of news is a head-scratcher. It seems MGM has hired Rob Cohen, director of xXx, The Fast and the Furious and recently Alex Cross, to remake Road House. Read More »