(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.)
The year is winding down, the holidays are here, and you’re in need of stocking stuffers. Here, buy every single one of these Blu-rays, and stuff them into various stockings. Problem solved! In this week’s Blu-ray round-up, I bring you the latest entry in The Conjuring universe, Blake Lively wearing some dope suits, Denzel Washington killing lots of people, a horror sequel starring two actors on the cusp of fame, and a splatter-movie classic, now rendered in glorious 4K.
Here are the new Blu-ray releases and their special features you should check out this week and beyond.
Quick, what’s your favorite action franchise (two films or more) starring a black lead? Without knowing your exact pick, I’m going to do a little prognosticating and guess that you’ve gone with an action/comedy. If I’m wrong, it’s either because you’re old and have chosen something from the ’70s or you’ve picked Blade.
This week’s biggest new release sees the return of Denzel Washington’s Robert McCall in The Equalizer 2, and not only is that good news for action fans – the movie’s a solid character piece punctuated with thrilling action beats – it’s also something of a milestone for black-led action franchises. While there’s no rarity of action movies with black leads, even a cursory look at the ones that spawned sequels over the past 30 years reveals something odd.
It’s fairly cold comfort that The Equalizer 2 is an improvement on its 2014 predecessor. That film’s director and star, Antoine Fuqua and Denzel Washington, have returned for this follow-up, which is largely more of the same. The first film was exceedingly dour, grim and gratuitously violent, with Washington’s Robert McCall laying waste to all sorts of faceless baddies. This time around, while the reasons why McCall has to fend off bad guys hit closer to home, much of the story is predictable and Fuqua’s unable to rein in the film to a more manageable length. All told, this manages to be a bit better simply by not being that excessive.
Next week brings Denzel Washington back to the big screen in badass mode for The Equalizer 2. The sequel finds the Oscar-winning actor returning as Robert McCall, a former black ops commando who has faked his death to live a quiet life in Boston. However, the wrong people still cross his path, and he ends up delivering some good old fashioned street justice to those who can’t help but wrong others. Two new Equalizer 2 clips have just surfaced showing us what the titular vigilante is dealing with this time. Read More »
Thanks to Avengers: Infinity War, Deadpool 2, and Incredibles 2 superheroes have dominated the summer box office so far. But when July rolls around, the vigilantes and spies will have their day. Tom Cruise is coming back as Ethan Hunt in Mission: Impossible – Fallout and Denzel Washington will also be back in the franchise that is becoming his own Mission: Impossible series.
The Equalizer 2 brings the return of Danzel Washington as Robert McCall, a man who fights against injustice whenever he sees it. And as a Lyft driver, he comes into contact with some pretty shady characters, as you’ll see in the new Equalizer 2 trailer. Read More »
The Morning Watch is a recurring feature that highlights a handful of noteworthy videos from around the web. They could be video essays, fanmade productions, featurettes, short films, hilarious sketches, or just anything that has to do with our favorite movies and TV shows.
In this edition, a video remembers the life and career of Anthony Bourdain after the famous chef and travel host took his own life last week. Plus, Stephen Colbert takes aim at the hateful fanboys who are ruining Star Wars for the rest of us, and Denzel Washington auditions some familiar faces in sports to be the next Equalizer.
First up, The New York Times put together this profile that illustrates perfectly why people loved Anthony Bourdain so much. He wasn’t just a TV personality who loved food and traveling. He was someone who helped us connect to the rest of the world and realize that we’re not so different from each other.
Stephen Colbert and his staff at The Late Show were annoyed with the news that Star Wars: The Last Jedi actress Kelly Marie Tran felt the need to leave Instagram due to hateful fanboys harassing her online. So they created this trailer to put them in their place and tell them to grow up. For more, listen to our special podcast episode about it.
Finally, during the NBA Finals, Denzel Washington and Sony Pictures took the time to have some of the NBA’s biggest stars (and even some from the WNBA) audition to become the next star of The Equalizer franchise. It should come as no surprise that these athletes aren’t the best actors, but this is still a fun gag.