Set in the South two years before the Civil War, DJANGO UNCHAINED stars Academy Award ®-winner Jamie Foxx as Django, a slave whose brutal history with his former owners lands him face-to-face with a German-born bounty hunter Dr. King Schultz (Academy Award®-winner Christolph Waltz). Schultz is on the trail of the murderous Brittle brothers, and only Django can lead him to his bounty. The unorthodox Schultz acquires Django with a promise to free him upon the capture of the Brittles – dead or alive. Success leads Schultz to free Django, though the two men choose not to go their separate ways. Instead, Schultz seeks out the South’s most wanted criminals with Django by his side. Honing vital hunting skills, Django remains focused on one goal: finding and rescuing Broomhilda (Kerry Washington), the wife he lost to the slave trade long ago. Django and Schultz’s search ultimately leads them to Calvin Candie (Academy Award®-nominee Leonardo DiCaprio), the proprietor of “Candyland,” an infamous plantation. Exploring the compound under false pretenses, Django and Schultz rouse the suspicion of Stephen (Academy Award®-nominee Samuel L. Jackson), Candie’s trusted house slave. Their moves are marked, and a treacherous organization closes in on them. If Django and Schultz are to escape with Broomhilda, they must choose between independence and solidarity, between sacrifice and survival… From the moment Jamie Foxx throws off a filthy, tattered blanket to reveal a richly muscled back crisscrossed with long scars, it's obvious that Django Unchained will be both true to its exploitation roots but also clear-eyed about the misery that's being exploited. Django (Foxx), a slave set free in the years before the Civil War, joins with a German dentist-turned-bounty hunter (the marvelous Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds), who has promised to help Django rescue his wife (Kerry Washington), who's still enslaved to a gleeful and grandiose plantation owner (Leonardo DiCaprio, plainly relishing the opportunity to play an out-and-out villain). What follows is a wild and woolly ride, crammed with all the pleasures one expects from a revenge fantasy written and directed by Quentin Tarantino. Plot-wise, some things happen a little too easily (for example, Django instantly becomes a master gunslinger), but the moral perspective is not glib. For all its lurid violence and jazzy dialogue, this is a still-rare movie that paints slavery for what it was: a brutal, dehumanizing practice that allowed a privileged few to profit from the suffering of many, a practice guaranteed by the gun and the whip. Think of it as the antidote to Gone with the Wind. Tarantino is more heartfelt in Django Unchained than in any of his previous movies--without sacrificing any of the pell-mell action, tension, and delicious language that made Reservoir Dogs, Kill Bill, and Pulp Fiction so very enjoyable. --Bret Fetzer
A Million Ways to Die in the West (Unrated Blu-ray + DVD + DIGITAL HD)
Seth MacFarlane directs, produces, co-writes and plays the role of the cowardly sheep farmer Albert in A Million Ways to Die in the West. After Albert backs out of a gunfight, his fickle girlfriend leaves him for another man. When a mysterious and beautiful woman rides into town, she helps him find his courage and they begin to fall in love. But when her husband, a notorious outlaw, arrives seeking revenge, the farmer must put his newfound courage to the test. Starring alongside MacFarlane are Oscar winner Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Amanda Seyfried, Giovanni Ribisi, Sarah Silverman and Neil Patrick Harris. MacFarlane reunites many of the filmmakers behind Universal and MRC’s hit film Ted including Scott Stuber (Bluegrass Films) and Jason Clark who produce, and Wellesley Wild and Alec Sulkin who co-wrote the script.
Kurt Russell (MIRACLE, DEATH PROOF) and Val Kilmer (DEJA VU, THE MISSING) will blow you away in this explosive, action-packed adventure! And now, the legendary battle for justice in TOMBSTONE hits home on Blu-ray(TM) for the first time ever. Russell is U.S. Marshal Wyatt Earp; Kilmer is the outrageous Doc Holliday. Together, they team up to lay down the law in a notorious showdown with ruthless outlaws at the O.K. Corral. With an all-star cast that also includes Sam Elliott, Bill Paxton, Dana Delany, Jason Priestley, Michael Biehn and Hollywood icon Charlton Heston, this Wild West epic will transport you back in time and land you smack dab in the center of the crossfire. So strap on your six shooters as you experience the remarkable picture and theater-quality sound of TOMBSTONE in Blu-ray(TM) High Definition. This Western has become a modest cult favorite since its release in 1993, when the film was met with mixed reviews but the performances of Kurt Russell (as Wyatt Earp) and especially Val Kilmer, for his memorably eccentric performance as the dying gunslinger Doc Holliday, garnered high praise. The movie opens with Wyatt Earp trying to put his violent past behind him, living happily in Tombstone with his brothers and the woman (Dana Delany) who puts his soul at ease. But a murderous gang called the Cowboys has burst on the scene, and Earp can't keep his gun belt off any longer. The plot sounds routine, and in many ways it is, but Western buffs won't mind a bit thanks to a fine cast and some well-handled action on the part of Rambo director George P. Cosmatos, who has yet to make a better film than this. --Jeff Shannon
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