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HOLMES & WATSON Solve a Mystery on Bluray

holmes and watson cover

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray/DVD and Digital from writer/director Ethan Cohen and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment brings together HOLMES & WATSON.

In the year 1881, Sherlock Holmes (Will Ferrell) and Dr. Watson (John C. Reilly) becomes friends from childhood to adulthood. Working on the criminal trial of nemesis Professor James Moriarty (Ralph Fiennes), Holmes believes that the man on trial is a doppelganger. Inspector Lestrade (Rob Brydon) isn’t happy when the fake Moriarty is set free.

But Holmes and Watson can’t stand around and babble about it because they need to go to Buckingham Palace where a party given by Queen Victoria (Pam Ferris) is happening. The two men lock eyes with Dr. Grace Hart (Rebecca Hall) and her companion Millie (Lauren Lapkus) but that is interrupted by a body falling out of the Queen’s cake. Adding to that a threat on the Queen’s life has the Big Ben ticking down.

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Now Watson works with Dr. Hart on the autopsy while Holmes stays outside with Millie – all four are having unusual feelings towards each other. Snapping back quickly, Holmes realizes that he must go to his brother Mycroft (Hugh Laurie) to get a little help and is told that he should look at someone close to him.

Trusting his brother leads Holmes to make a major mistake that he needs to correct because the pieces have fallen into place and there is no way Holmes will finish the case without his best friend Dr. Watson.

Ferrell as Sherlock Holmes is totally ridiculous yet he lands his lines in such a way that I had to think about what he was saying. His thought process is fast paced and has math in a way which is not my strong suit! That being said, only Ferrell could bring such a twistedness to a beloved icon of mystery solving. It also shows that Ferrell sees humor in the sense that no one is safe!

Reilly as Dr. Watson is really a twisted character who has an unusual and emotional heaviness towards Holmes and the Queen. That being said, the minute he walks in to take a selfie with her majesty, mayhem ensues and I couldn’t imagine any other two actors that could pull it off.

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Hall as Dr. Hart has a GHOST moment with Reilly’s Dr. Watson that was so comically disturbing that I can’t imagine they did it in one take. I personally would have cracked up repeatedly. Her character is strong and deals with the men trying to handle the fact that she is a doctor.

Fiennes as Moriarty is just as bad as he wants to be. I love Fiennes so whether the character he plays is good, bad or indifferent – I’m all in. Lapkus as Millie will never, ever, ever make me forget why I don’t like onions. She is a straight faced character that I basically waited every time she was on screen for her to crack. Well done young lady, well done.

Ferris as Queen Victoria brings a presence that I thought was so cool. She carried herself with the grace of a Queen but took the slapstick and made it her own.

Other cast includes Steve Coogan as Gustav Klinger, Hugh Laurie as Mycroft Holmes, Bella Ramsey as Flotsam, Scarlet Grace as Pickle, Noah Jupe as Doxy, Braun Strowman as Brawn and Kelly Macdonald as Rose Hudson. Look out for a familiar Billy Zane that made me laugh.

Sony Pictures Entertainment encompasses motion picture production for television, digital content and theater releases. The studios include Columbia Pictures, Screen Gems, TriStar Pictures, Sony Pictures Animation, Stage 6 Films and Sony Picture Classics. To see what is coming to theaters and to home entertainment please visit www.sonypictures.com.

The Bluray Exclusives include Line-O-Rama: Laugh Out Loud Outtakes with the Cast, Deleted & Extended Scenes, Will & John: Together Again, Seriously Absurd: A Look a the Cast, and Mrs. Hudson’s Men: Exclusive Testimonials with Mrs. Hudson’s Suitors.

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MOVIES ANYWHERE gives viewers the ability to download the Movies Anywhere App. With that you can view films by downloading or streaming to your favorite device using a Digital Code. For more information on Movies Anywhere please visit www.MoviesAnywhere.com.

FINAL WORD: HOLMES & WATSON is a comedy that only Ferrell and Reilly could pull off. It is nice to see them together again as they seem to have a comedy chemistry. Starting off with TALLEDEGA NIGHTS: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby to STEP-BROTHERS, it is clear that these two men enjoy bringing laughs to fans.

There is a lot of adult humor, slapstick, twists, turns and silliness that make HOLMES & WATSON everything that these two actors do together. I can’t imagine there wasn’t a fun day on the set with these two. I will admit there were moments where I had to rewind things in my head as the story does twist a lot so be ready for that or just don’t and laugh.

In the end – they are weapons of mass deduction!

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Life Can Change When Given a Chance for a SECOND ACT on Bluray

second act bluray

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray from director Peter Segal, STX Entertainment and Universal Pictures Home Entertainment comes a chance to turn dreams into reality with SECOND ACT.

Maya (Jennifer Lopez) works for a grocery story and has made her way up the ladder hoping that she would finally cement a managerial position. Boyfriend Trey (Milo Ventimiglia) is supportive and lets Maya know he is ready to start a family. But Maya has a secret which is keeping her from taking that step.

When she doesn’t get the job, bff Joan (Leah Remini) believes she is meant for better things anyway but not before Maya and Trey end their relationship. Her son Dilly (Dalton Harrod) and Joan decide they are going to help Maya along a little. After a run-in at work, Maya walks away but not before Joan lets her know that Anderson Clarke (Treat Williams) and his company want to interview Maya for a big job.

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Maya is stunned when she realizes that Dilly has highly inflated her resume and even more when she gets the job. Someone who isn’t so happy is Zoe Clarke (Vanessa Hudgens) seeing Maya as a problem, especially when it comes up that their ‘organic’ products aren’t truly ‘organic’.

That’s when a challenge is placed before Maya and Zoe, to see who can truly make an organic product that will make the company a serious profit. Using her smarts, Maya is put to the test while trying to hide exactly who she is from everyone around her, remembering who she is for herself and discovering that her past is right in front of her.

That’s what happens in a second act!

Lopez as Maya is playing a character that she has done before and the formula works for her. In this film she is a woman who has a secret in her past that keeps her from moving forward in her relationships. Jumping into the new job, Maya does so with constant pitfalls that, like Lopez,  makes work to her advantage. We have seen that in her films THE WEDDING PLANNER and MAID IN MANHATTAN so stay with what works.

Hudgens as Zoe is a young woman who is also dealing with a past and putting her life aside to help her father. Starting out as competitors, Hudgens gives her characters scowl a few smiles and befriends Maya. Both have secrets and both have goals that are not far from one another’s dreams.

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Ventimiglia as Trey starts out the film using his charm and wit which is nice and everything we expect from him. Of course he is first and foremost Jack on the hit series THIS IS US but we ladies certainly don’t mind seeing him in this film.

Remini as Joan is hilarious as the bff who really wants her friend to be happy in more than just being a manager of a grocery story. What totally cracks me up about her character is the relationship she has with her two kids – one in college and one with a trash mouth. She handles them both beautifully and hilariously.

Williams as Clarke is a man who knows how to make a company successful. He sees something in Maya that has the potential to be amazing for his company. I have watched Williams over the years and know one thing for sure, he is one of Hollywood’s most underrated actors.

Two stand outs for me in the film are Yi as Ariana, a very smart young girl who is constantly squashed for her knowledge until Maya steps in. The other is Annaleigh Ashford as Hildy who is the outspoken assistant to Maya who is the squasher. There is something about both of these actresses that I truly enjoy and can see such fantastic potential for both.

Other cast include Annaleigh Ashford as Hildy, Charlyne Yi as Ariana, Alan Aisenberg as Chase, Reddie Stroma as Ron Ebsen, Dave Foley as Felix Herman, Larry Miller as Weiskopf, Lacretta as Suzi, Dan Bacatinsky as Arthur and Diedre Friel as Big Ant.

Universal Studios Home Entertainment has just added an amazing film to their library and making it available for us all to experience and re-experience in our own home theatres. There are films of every genre available from scary to drama to family films. For more of what they have to offer please visit www.uphe.com.

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The Bonus Features include Explore the Themes of SECOND ACT with Cast and Filmmakers, Connecting with Milo Ventimiglia, The Empowering Women of Second Act, Friendship On and Off Screen, Working with the Ones You Love and SECOND ACT Trailer.

SECOND ACT is a relatable story in that circumstance can sometimes be a punch in the gut but it is up to each of us to find our way through it. Of course I don’t suggest padding resumes but the character of Maya absolutely had something to offer in so many ways. Her creativity and ability to read people is something that isn’t taught in college. There are many people who have that!

On a less serious note, the cast makes the film emotional and fun with its twists and turns. I suppose you could call the film a rom-com if you agree that sometimes you have to court yourself to see what you are all about.

So plan to take a ride up the ladder with the film SECOND ACT coming to Bluray.

In the end – the only thing stopping you is you!

 

JOHNNY ENGLISH STRIKES AGAIN on Bluray

 

johnny

Jeri Jacquin

Our favorite spy, well my favorite spy, is returning to Bluray and DVD from director David Kerr and Universal Pictures Home Entertainment with JOHNNY ENGLISH STRIKES AGAIN.

British Intelligence is in the middle of a hack and all of their agents have been exposed through a cyber attack. The Prime Minister (Emma Thompson) has no choice but to call in retired MI7 agents and among them is the one and only Johnny English (Rowan Atkinson).

English has been keeping himself busy as a geography teacher but actually teaching his students a little bit about being an agent. Happy to be back, he requests his old partner Angus Bough (Ben Miller) and a car that is a little less 007 and a lot more Agent English.

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They take off to France to find out how the cyber attack started. While staking out the yacht ‘Dot Calm’, English comes into contact with the lovely Ophelia (Olga Kurylenko) as they both see suspicious server activity but have to escape being caught.

Back at MI7, the Prime Minister decides it’s time to get a hold of Jason Volta (Jake Lacy) for help. Jason is a Silicon Valley billionaire who has his hands in all kind of tech world wide. As more cyber attacks happen, the PM needs to make an agreement at the G12 meeting.

Back with English, he is totally taken with Ophelia and doesn’t know she’s been sent by Russia to take out English but instead, she starts to like him. Working together they discover what Volta is really up to and try to reach the PM to tell her all about it. Not getting any help from MI7, English and Bough have a little help from wife Captain Lydia (Vicki Pepperdine) who gets the boys to the meeting.

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But it isn’t that simple because nothing with English ever is. One phone call to close to the sub wreaks havoc but only this agent knows how to throw a tablet and change the course of destruction.

Seriously, the kids need him back at school!

Atkinson as Johnny English is quirky suave, dedicated to his belief in something even though it’s wrong and the luckiest retired agent to ever turn something wrong into something right. I have been a huge fan of this actor/comedian since I can remember. I suppose we could go way back to Lord Blackadder and Mr. Bean days. As a matter of fact, my son (now well into his 30’s) and I use to absolutely lose it watching Mr. Bean together. We are twisted like that. Here we all these years later and still get together to get our fix of Atkinson and his brand of comedy.

Kurylenko as Ophelia is certainly getting her share of spy’s as this isn’t the first time she’s been sexy chasing a guy in a tux with a gun and spiffy car. Here she takes a hand a comedy and is pulled in to Johnny English just like the rest of us. Thompson as the Prime Minister is hilarious because I actually think her portrayal would make that position in Parliament more believable.

Miller as Bough is the perfect sidekick to Atkinson’s English because he’s a little more concerned with safety than looking good in a tux. Oh lets just say it, he’s too sweet to be put in such crazy situations yet, he manages well. This time he has a little help from Pepperdine as wife Lydia who thinks he’s just as adorable as I do.

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Lacy as Volta attempts to portray himself as the good guy but English, Bough and Ophelia know differently. Never let your billions get in the way of psycho I always say and Lacy gives us plenty of well groomed world domination psycho-ness.

Other cast include Adam James as Pegasus, Pippa Bennett-Warner as Lesley, Miranda Hennessy as Tara, Irena Tyshyna as Viola, David Mumeni as Fabian, Samantha Russell of Prime Minister of Sweden, Pauline McLynn as Mrs. Trattner, and Matthew Beard as P.

Universal Studios Home Entertainment has just added an amazing film to their library and making it available for us all to experience and re-experience in our own home theatres. There are films of every genre available from scary to drama to family films. For more of what they have to offer please visit www.uphe.com.

The Bonus Features Exclusive to Bluray, DVD and Digital include: The Comedy Genius of Rowan Atkinson – A look at Rowan’s comedic talents – the meticulous attention to detail that is the hallmark of his work. Johnny English combines the best of Rowan – a skillful use of dialogue and slapstick, and The Johnny English Legacy – What has changed in the series this time around, for Johnny, and for the world? In this piece, we learn form the cast and filmmakers how the character has evolved and what’s changed without changing the core of the incompetent agent we have come to know and love.

Also, Virtual Reality JOHNNY ENGLISH STYLE – Virtual reality might be everywhere, but no one does it quite like our intrepid agent English, The Gadgets – Rowan leads us through his notable collection of gadgets as the team provides insights into their creation, The Cars – Rowan is a well-known auto enthusiast, and had a big say in the choice of cars used in the film, Locations and Design, a Cast of Characters – With a lead like Rowan Atkinson, the supporting cast has to be just as strong and finally, Feature Commentary with Director David Kerr.

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JOHNNY ENGLISH STRIKES AGAIN gives us everything we love about spy comedies but Atkinson style! He is Johnny English through and through and with a pretty cool cast to support the madness there is no way laughing isn’t part of the plan. This is fun and funny and I personally wouldn’t have it any other way.

In the end – only the best will do —- and no one else is available!

ROWAN & MARTIN’S LAUGH-IN: The Complete 5th and 6th Season on DVD

season five laugh in

Jeri Jacquin

On DVD from Time Life, the company that continues to bring us comedy is ROWAN & MARTIN’S LAUGH-IN: The Complete 5th and 6th Season.

The gang is back for it’s fifth season on DVD with 24 episodes of the hit comedy series from 1971-1972. This is an epic year as finally Dick Martin gets a long awaited wish when Raquel Welch makes her lovely one and only debut on the show. Such a gorgeous woman and it is so much fun to watch Dick finally have his day!

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Of course if you are going to watch Laugh-In them you better be surprised for some amazing guest stars. Not from any one genre, era or walk of life, Laugh-In reaches around it all to bring such guests from television like Steve Allen and Johnny Carson. Also comedy from the likes of Carol Channing and Henny Youngman along with entertainers of song with Bing Crosby, Petula Clark, Liza Minnelli, Doc Severinsen and the legendary Johnny Cash.

Hollywood got in the act with Tony Curtis, Gene Hackman, Rita Hayworth, Vincent Price, Debbie Reynolds and John Wayne made an appearance.

Let’s not forget the Laugh-In regulars that include Lily Tomlin, Ruth Buzzi, Gary Owens, Alan Sues, Ann Elder, Dennis Allen, Barbara Sharma, Johnny Brown, Larry Hovis, Richard Dawson, Judy Carne, Arte Johnson, Henry Gibson, Jo Anne Worley and Teresa Graves. All brought in to celebrate the 100th episode because what’s a party without a little name dropping!

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This season also includes the classic characters and situations we come to expect from Dan Rowan and Dick Martin. The famous Cocktail Party and the announcement of who would receive the Fickle Finger of Fate is fun filled only to end the show with a trip to the Joke Wall.

The characters of Edith Ann (who is only five years old mind you – and that’s the trutttthhhhhh!) as well as the loving couple of Gladys and Tyrone and Ruth Buzzi’s Hollywood Reporter give us the scoop on childhood, being a couple and the buzz around Buzzi’s Hollywood.

Let’s not forget what Laugh-In also brought to television viewers of the show, it brought comedy sure, but also digs at sports and politics and the joke was on them. This 6-disc 24 episode Fifth Season makes sure we are in on all of it.

ROWAN & MARTIN’S LAUGH-IN: The Complete Sixth Season continues with the comedy and the stars bringing a final season to the show changing series. Now understand, this series wasn’t to go down without making sure every zing was thrown and every chance of shade uttered.

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Continuing with the previous years line up, the addition of Moosie Drier, Tod Bass, Brian Bressler, Patti Deutsch, Sara Kennedy, Jod Strunk, Willie Tyler & Lester, and Donna Jean Young join Dan, Dick, Lily Tomlin, Ruth Buzzi, Arte Johnson, Richard Dawson and Gary Owens to revel in a party from Downtown Burbank!

The final season’s celebrity line up is straight out of the sky as stars line up to have their moment with Jack Benny, James Caan, William Conrad, Sammy Davis, Jr., Dom DeLuise, Angie Dickinson, Sandy Duncan, James Farentino, Robert Goulet, Jack Klugman, Rich Little, Don Rickles, Mark Spitz, John Wayne, the beloved Michael Landon and the red head who needs no introduction but we’ll do it anyway – Carol Burnett.

The show takes aim at guns, laws, adult books, morality, the circus, Thanksgiving, beautiful people, sports, commercials, the family, airlines, actors, the Summer of ’72 and the golden state of California. Surprised? Of course not – everyone is fair game for this band of adorable and beloved misfits!

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As sad as the final season may have been at the time (and no longer sad now because all six seasons are offered by Time Life), the characters that I came to absolutely adore and excited to see every week at least came to play for one last season. Including Fickle Finger of Fate, Here Comes the Judge, the Joke Wall, General Bull Right, Big Al, Ernestine and Edith Ann along with The Swizzles and Robot Theater. That’s what makes this collection so epic, I can go back and enjoy myself time and time again with the comedy I grew up on!

Time Life continues to bring never before released anywhere classic collections of television shows for fans to revisit and remember what has made television so special. Time Life has released Mama’s Family, CPO Sharkey and The Tonight Show and they now reminds of us of a time when sex and politics were up for grabs with ROWAN & MARTIN’S LAUGH-IN. For more of what Time Life has to offer fans of classic television visit www.timelife.com.

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The amazing thing about both of these seasons is that no matter how much you watch, there is always something new to laugh about. Even more amazing are the issues Laugh-In raised in regards to women, people of color and politics that are no so far away from the same issue we deal with today. Giving their pokes and prods, this series got away with a lot more than is possible today.

Time Life has made it possible for us all to relive not only a time in our lives when humor was television king, but share with our growing families what made us all laugh in the 70’s. They may even learn that the series Laugh-In brought sayings that are still used today and for the same reasons.

That is what this series did for television, for comedy and for bringing awareness to things that are funny but also important in our lives. There’s nothing wrong with that in the slightest and Laugh-In gave me a funny bone that I’m proud to carry every day.

In the end – are you ready to celebrate laughter?

NIGHT SCHOOL Rings in the New Year Laughs on Bluray

Nightschool bluray

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray/DVD and Digital in time to ring in the New Year from director Malcolm D. Lee and Universal Pictures Home Entertainment is a life lesson for us all while attending NIGHT SCHOOL.

Teddy (Kevin Hart) is a man who wants to show his love Lisa (Megalyn Echikunwoke) that he can take care of her and provide the finer things in life. The problem is that Teddy has champagne tastes on a beer budget. Selling bbq equipment, and doing it quite well, he sees a future of promise for them both.

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So much so that he finally asks Lisa to marry him with a large ring and an even larger explosion – literally. Now out of a job he has to find a quick way to get into another business so she doesn’t find out the emotional and financial fine line he’s been riding. The problem is that Teddy never graduated high school which means he is limited in the jobs he can get.

That’s when he decides to go to night school and get his GED and, of course, he runs into his first problem in the principal. Stewart (Taran Killam) is someone that Teddy bullied in high school and he has daggers for him big time. That means Stewart doesn’t want him any where near his school – even if night school teacher Carrie (Tiffany Haddish) doesn’t agree.

From night on Teddy is getting on everyone’s nerves including classmates Mackenzie (Rob Riggle), Jaylen (Romany Malco), Luis (Al Madrigal), Theresa (Mary Lynn Rajskub), Mila (Anne Winters) and the man behind prison Facetime Gerald (Keith David). He also learns that instructor Carrie isn’t taking any excuses or charming behavior for anyone who doesn’t want to learn.

The band of GED’ers also share with one another that they never were the best of students and are afraid they aren’t going to cut it. Even when they try their hardest it seems that the only solution to graduating is to take a few well places short cuts. When they are all confronted, it boils down to Teddy as the culprit and instigator.

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Given one final chance after a lot of chaos and knowing that his love for Lisa is on the line, the group comes together in friendship that no one, not even Principal Stewart can mess with. That and a few well place knocks on the mat as Carrie continues to believe in her students!

Hart as Teddy once again plays the role of a man who is out of place in life and spazzy at the way he deals with things. The humor is there and Hart is also credited with the script for NIGHT SCHOOL. Bringing together what he knows in the way of comedy with a cast of characters that have equally made their own mark in comedy makes this a silly film filled with chuckles, plus he does look good in a chicken costume.

Haddish as Carrie puts her verbal foot down from the moment she sees Teddy on the street to realizing he is the student that drives teacher’s crazy. Of course that doesn’t mean that Haddish doesn’t bring her own brand of comedy to the character. She had made a name for herself and continues to jump into comedies that make her look good.

Riggle as Mackenzie the coach takes a fall or two that had me cringing but still laughing. Malco as Jaylen has a whole speech on not being ‘woke’ yet and I went with it. Madrigal as Luis is hilarious with his speech about the pube cheese cake!

Rajskub as Theresa is a Mom who loves being a Mom but is a little psycho about it. Once you meet her husband you begin to understand why her screws are slightly loose. Winters as Mila is a girl who doesn’t see the benefit of schooling without social media. David as Gerald cracks me up trying to get an education while keeping an eye on who might be creeping up on the webcam.

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Echikunwoke as Lisa is a woman who doesn’t need anything more than Teddy although he doesn’t quite get that. She begins to suspect he is cheating on her with his long nights and weird work days. Killam as Stewart loves to carry a bat and speak in a way that worries even me. Trying to make sure Teddy is kept as down as he has always felt, he keeps his eye on everything that goes on in the classroom.

Universal Studios Home Entertainment has just added an amazing film to their library and making it available for us all to experience and re-experience in our own home theatres. There are films of every genre available from scary to drama to family films. For more of what they have to offer please visit www.uphe.com.

The Bluray/DVD comes with an Extended Cut that also includes the Theatrical Version. Bonus Features are Alternate Opening, and Deleted Scenes, Gag Reel – prepare to laugh (or cry) yourself silly through this hilarious montage of behind-the-scenes antics performed by the cast of NIGHT SCHOOL.

 And Night School’s in Session – ring the bell as we introduce you to NIGHT SCHOOL’S band of misfits, Who’s the Student? Who’s the Teacher? – fans were thrilled to see friends Kevin Hart and Tiffany Haddish star in their first film together, Prom Night Revisited, Cap ‘n Gown ‘n Giggles, Making of the Dance Battle, Christian Chicken, Game Over, Extended Performance “El Sueno” and so much more!

Also, Movies Anywhere is part of the package that allows you to watch anywhere with the Movies Anywhere App!

Other cast include Fat Joe as Bobby, Ben Schwartz as Marvin, Yuvonne Orji as Maya, Bresha Webb as Denise, Jeff Rose as Isaac and Zach Osterman as Little Mac.

NIGHT SCHOOL is a story about where we have been, where we are and where we could go and teaches that lesson with hilarious laughs. It is such a large cast of funny people which makes the story so much fun to watch.

In the end – bring an apple for the teacher because NIGHT SCHOOL has begun!

ERNIE KOVACS: The Centennial Edition Comes to DVD

Kovacs

Jeri Jacquin

Currently on DVD to celebrate the 100th birthday of a comic genius from SHOUT! Factory is an amazing collection with ERNIE KOVACS: The Centennial Edition.

Ernie Kovacs came from a family that immigrated to Hungary and although not a great student still managed to receive a scholarship to the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Struggling to live in New York City, he managed to go to the movies that he would later say influences him.

Finding acting work in summer stock, it would be an almost fatal illness that would be a school of another kind. After spending time in several hospital, he returned home to take care of his mother after his parents separated. His first job in television was in 1950 and a show called Pick Your Ideal, then hosting Deadline For Dinner, Now You’re Cooking and Three to Get Ready.

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In 1954, Kovacs began a late-night talk show called The Ernie Kovacs Show so now he could be seen almost everywhere on television. He even took a few nights a week for Steve Allen on The Tonight Show, part of the game show Gamble on Love, One Minute Please, Time Will Tell and Take a Good Look.

 Kovacs also did television specials which were popular in the 50’s and 60’s as Silent Show contained no dialogue but instead only sound effects and music. Now Kovacs would be noticed receiving movie offers, the Sylvania Award and the cover of Life magazine.

His theatrical films included OPERATION MAD BALL, IT HAPPENED TO JANE, STRANGERS WHEN WE MEET, NORTH TO ALASKA, FIVE GOLDEN HOURS and SAIL A CROOKED SHIP to name a few.

That’s not all Kovacs is known for as he was a music lover from the days of being in the hospital. He would often use classic music as part of his comedy as well. He also wrote the book Zoomar: A Sophisticated Novel about Love and TV, Silent Show, How to Talk at Gin as well as articles for Mad magazine.

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Kovacs was killed in a car accident in 1962 but he left behind some of the most iconic legacy of original comedy that we are not likely to ever see again.

SHOUT! Factory has grown into a tremendous multi-platform media company. Releasing new animated features such as the exquisite Long Way North, and the epic fantasy Beauty And The Beast. Also their own original horror film, Fender Bender gives fans a good scare. For more of what SHOUT Factor has to offer please visit www.shoutfactory.com.

The 9 DVD set includes 22 hours of landmark hilarity featuring Episodes from his Local and National Morning Shows, Episodes from his NBC Prime-Time Show, Kovacs on Music, Five ABC TV Specials, The Color Version of His Legendary Silent Show Eugene, His Award-Winning Commercials for Dutch Masters Cigars, Short Films, Tributes, and Rarities.

 Eighteen Bonus Sketches Featuring Man of his Most Beloved Characters, Three Complete Episodes of his Offbeat Game Show Take a Good Look, “A Pony for Chris” – his Rare TV Pilot for Medicine Man Costarring Buster Keaton, The Lively Arts Featuring the Only Existing Filmed Solo Interview with Ernie Kovacs and the 2011 American Cinematheque Panel.

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 Ernie Kovacs was one of the first funny men that I can remember watching on television with my mother. His sense of humor was hilarious to me and I knew his voice on television even if I was in another room. The comedy of Kovacs continues to be what I consider the gold standard and can see how comedy throughout the years has some similarities to his creativity.

This man had so much talent that it isn’t surprising to me that he found so many outlets for it. From radio, music, television and films, as well as in book form, Kovacs found a way to reach his fans.

ERNIE KOVACS: The Centennial Edition is not only a great way to remember everything he brought to us through the years but a stellar way to introduce a new generation to comedy that is enduring. There is so much in this collection to share and let me say, it is totally worth a marathon with everyone who enjoys laughing with characters that are original and so full of fun.

In the end – happy 100th birthday to an original genius!

It’s the Return of The Dude in THE BIG LEBOWSKI 20th Anniversary Limited Edition

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Jeri Jacquin

Coming to 4K HD and Bluray from writers/directors/producers Joel and Ethan Coen along with Universal Pictures Home Entertainment is the film that has become an iconic classic with THE BIG LEBOWSKI 20th Anniversary Limited Edition.

The Dude (Jeff Bridges) is a laid back Los Angelino who remains in a chilled state of mind, that is until one night when two thugs breaks into his home and rough him up. Looking for a Jeff Lebowski, The Dude lays out the reasoning that there is another Jeff Lebowski who happens to be very rich and obviously they have made a mistake. Realizing their mistake, the one thing the two thugs can’t take back is a pee’d on carpet.

Upset with what happened, The Dude explains to bowling buddies Walter (John Goodman) and Donny (Steve Buscemi) and how he really liked that rug. Walter has an idea, go see the rich Jeff Lebowski and get some kind of restitution! That’s exactly what he does and meets the very cranky Jeffrey Lebowski (David Huddleston) who says that it’s not his problem.

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The Dude isn’t about to walk away empty handed when he tells Lebowski’s assistant Brandt (Philip Seymour Hoffman) that he has permission to take any carpet in the house. On the way out, The Dude meets Lebowski’s wife Bunny (Tara Reid) who is responsible for the attack because she owes loan sharks. Her greeting to The Dude is nothing short of money based and a proposition for which he walks away amused.

Happy with his new carpet, The Dude is surprised a few days later to receive a telephone call from Brandt with a financial offer. Bunny has been kidnapped with a demand for a million dollars and rich Lebowski wants to use poor Lebowski to drop off the ransom and get a bit of money for his trouble. Given a case and a cell phone, he is to wait for a call telling him where to drop off the money but Walter feels the need to be with his friend when it happens.

On the drive, Walter also comes up with his own plan. He believes Bunny has concocted this whole thing for the money so why don’t they just keep the money for themselves. Throwing a case off a local bridge, the two men see the kidnappers take the ransom and run. Later talking it over at the bowling alley, they discover that The Dude’s car is gone and so are their riches.

The Dude is contacted by Lebowski’s daughter Maude (Julianne Moore) who explains that her father’s wife is a porn star and that she also thinks Bunny is faking all of it. Upset that the ransom came out of the family’s foundation, she asks The Dude to get it all back. If that isn’t wacky enough, now Lebowski is mad that The Dude screwed up the drop and men with German accents invade his bath saying they are the real kidnappers.

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The cops find The Dude’s car but the cash is gone and the pee thugs take him to see porn maker Jackie Treehorn (Ben Gazzara) who wants the money to cover money Bunny owes him! After a drugging, cops and being thrown out of a car – who should drive by in a red sports car? Bunny. So what gives? Well, that’s what you will have to discover for yourself because, truth be told, you have to see it to believe it.

Yet, The Dude will abide!

Bridges as The Dude is absolutely and without a doubt pure perfection. He is a laid back human being who just lives in the moment and doesn’t want anything that will mess with his calm. Bridges just embraces every second of this and makes it look completely easy and smooth. I suppose it doesn’t hurt that he gets to be very comfortable in every stitch of clothing and appearance which might make being The Dude more of a joy than a job. This character is completely endearing and just wants his carpet and that basically leads to the chaos that follows. The moral of the story might be that bare floors are less of a hassle.

Goodman as Walter is the complete opposite of The Dude. He isn’t about to let anyone or anything challenge his way of dealing with things yet he sees nothing wrong with his solutions. The Dude truly cares about his friend but there are moments where his calm-rage is absolutely frightening. This is such an amazing role for Goodman because he gets to be as out there as he wants to be and it fits him well. Buscemi as Donny is such a loveable character who just wants to be in on everything but doesn’t have the ability to really keep up. This is probably the most endearing role I’ve seen Buscemi perform and he just proves he has always had the wide range ability but has gotten himself stuck in toughened roles. I’d like to have seen more of this type from him.

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Moore as Maude is just as creepy as she can possibly be. She is clearly a control freak and will do anything to keep things moving the way she wants them to move. The way she handles The Dude is emotional strong arming to my way of thinking and her seduction manner leaves allot to be desired – but hilarious. Huddleston as the elder and richer Lebowski believes he is better than his poorer counterpart and believes he is justified in using the loser. He has The Dude jumping through hoops and doesn’t exactly count on him to figure anything.

Hoffman as Brandt is, what I called, the Lebowski-bitch in that he is perfectly happy serving his boss and putting The Dude in one hell of a mess. Hoffman has always managed to stun me with every role he does and it is fantastic to revisit a film that gave us all a glimpse into what he became capable of on screen. Reid as Bunny plays the role of a trophy wife who wants more and more of the almighty dollar and doesn’t seem ashamed to make that known to, well, anyone.

Other cast include David Thewlis as Know Harrington, John Turturro as Jesus Quintana, Jon Polito as Da Fino, Peter Stormare as Uli, Torsten Voges as Franz and Flea as Kieffer, Jimmie Gilmore as Smokey, Jack Kehler as Marty and Sam Elliott as The Stranger.

Universal Studios Home Entertainment has just added an amazing film to their library and making it available for us all to experience and re-experience in our own home theatres. There are films of every genre available from scary to drama to family films. For more of what they have to offer please visit www.uphe.com.

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The Ultra HD Combo Pack of THE BIG LEBOWSKI 20th Anniversary Limited Edition includes The Dude’s Life – , The Dude Abides: The Big Lebowski Ten Years Later, Making of THE BIG LEBOWSKI, The Lebowski Fest: An Achiever’s Story, Flying Carpets and Bowling Pin Dreams: The Dream Sequences of The Dude, Interactive Map, Jeff Bridges Photo Book, Photo Gallery and so much more!

On 4K Ultra HD included in the combo pack of Bluray, Digital and Movies Anywhere brings a sharper pictures delivering a multi dimensional experience, Bluray that has exclusive extras and theatre quality surround sound, Digital allowing viewing just about anywhere and Movies Anywhere with the app that keeps your films stored for viewing anytime!

THE BIG LEBOWSKI has become such an iconic film that has brought some of the coolest lines to ever be uttered. Of course The Dude also has made its way into costumes for parties and Halloween with a simple robe and slippers being totally recognizable.

The film is hilarious, crafty, absurd, twisted, rich vs. poor, dysfunctional family and unusual friendships all rolled into a story that is so far fetched it might even be believable.

Now, THE BIG LEBOWSKI is back to entertain us once again but this time in our own homes. The most amazing thing about this film is that it is just as hilarious today as it was 20 years ago and open to a new generation that can appreciate its comedy, originality and fantastic ensemble cast.

In the end – he’d rather be bowling!

 

 

THE BEST OF THE THREE STOOGES

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Jeri Jacquin

From the vaults of Time Life comes one of the most amazing collections of comedy I will ever have the joy of watching again and again with THE BEST OF THE THREE STOOGES.

Let me first start off by saying that as a kid, the Three Stooges were one of my most important introductions to comedy. Better than any Saturday morning cartoon, Moe, Curly and Larry could have tears running down my face within a few short minutes.

How did they begin? In the 1920’s vaudeville was huge and a source of amazing entertainment as Ted Healy and Moe Howard hit the stage. Shemp Howard, Curly Howard and Larry Fine would later become part of the group as well in their own time.

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Within a few short years, The Three Stooges would begin making short comedies and between 1934 and 1946, Columbia Pictures would let the comedy trio do over 90 short films. That is insanely incredible to make that many pieces in what I consider a short period of time.

There were many shifts in the group with illnesses and deaths, but that didn’t stop The Three Stooges from continuing well into the 1970’s. In all that time, fans did not stop wanting to experience the fantastic comedy timing that The Three Stooges had to offer.

No one seemed to mind the changes in the line up as long as the line up was funny and entertaining. It seems audiences were more forgiving during that time than they are today.

What Time Life has managed to do, and I’m so thrilled they did it, was bring 13 discs which equals 45 hours of feature films, vintage animated cartoons and a nine part documentary series that had me completely riveted. I love knowing how my favorite actors, actresses and comediennes began, and it is all here.

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With iconic lines such as “well I outta…..”, “oh wise guy eh?” and “Nyuk! Nyuk!” which are still used today (and probably not known why by those young folk who use it), it is a staple in my family. The Three Stooges brought slap to slap stick with eye pokes, rotating shoulders, nose grabs, and bonks on the head and yes, they are still used today by us all.

The first disc includes the feature film The Three Stooges, The Three Stooges Cartoons Bon Bon Parade (1935), Merry Mutineers (1936) A Hollywood Detour (1942), Disc 2 contains Shemp Howard Comedy Shorts with 14 Classics from the ‘30s and ‘40s, Joe Besser Comedy Shorts with 10 Side Splitters From the ‘40s and 50s, Joe DeRita Comedy Shorts with 4 Smackers from the ‘40s. Disc 3 has Have Rocket Will Travel, The Outlaws is Coming and Rockin’ in the Rockies.

 That isn’t all! Disc 4 contains Documentary: Hey Moe! Hey Dad! and 4 Episodes of A Trio Grows in Brooklyn, A Stooge is Born, Slap Happy and Eureka. Finally, Disc 5 finished up with Documentary: Hey Moe! Hey Dad! and Good Night & Good Nyuk!, Déjà vu All Over Again, Bum’s Rush, Curtain Call and A Son Also Rises.

Time Life continues to bring never before released anywhere classic collections of television shows for fans to revisit and remember what has made television so special. Time Life has released Mama’s Family, CPO Sharkey and The Tonight Show and they now reminds of us of a time when sex and politics were up for grabs with ROWAN & MARTIN’S LAUGH-IN. For more of what Time Life has to offer fans of classic television visit www.timelife.com.

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Here’s more amazing news – this is only Volume One of THE BEST OF THE THREE STOOGES and it would have to be. This group of whacky and talented men lives a comedic life that was both hilarious and tragic at the same time.

Have Rocket, Will Travel has the group blasting off to Venus for a ride into the world of talking unicorns, aliens and giant tarantula’s and yes, those things are made for the boys to make fun of. Rockin’ in the Rockies has The Three Stooges prospecting in Nevada. Of course that couldn’t possibly be all especially with the era full of cattle rustlers and roulette wheels at the local casino saloon.

There are so many amazing reasons to have The Three Stooges as part of your home entertainment library and these two examples of laughs are only one reason. The comedy trio (even through the changes) are iconic in the world and are still copied today in many ways.

This past Halloween alone I saw people dressed up as Moe, Curly and Larry and I couldn’t be happier about it. There is something sweet and nostalgic about a part of my childhood showing up from time to time to remind me of where my sense of humor came from.

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Now, I have the opportunity to share with my family the hilarity and it is my three-year-old granddaughter who follows in my footsteps in a fantastic way. She can’t stop herself from laughing hysterically at the antics of The Three Stooges. Time Life has gone in-depth gathering the films, documentaries and animated cartoons for what will be known now as fans of all ages.

In the end – they are The Three Stooges of mayhem and fun!

THE SPY WHO DUMPED ME Lands on Bluray and DVD

 

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Jeri Jacquin

On Bluray/DVD and Digital from writer/director Susanna Fogel and Lionsgate come the girls who take on THE SPY WHO DUMPED ME.

Audrey (Mila Kunis) and Morgan (Kate McKinnon) are the best of friends that do practically everything together. When Audrey’s birthday roles around of course bff Morgan throws a party. The problem is Audrey is still getting over the fact that she believes boyfriend Drew (Justin Theroux) has broken up with her.

Deciding this is no way to spend her birthday, Morgan suggests they have a little house warming fire to purge Drew from existence. While the ceremony is taking place, Audrey receives a call from Drew who tries to explain that he only left for her protection. Not understanding what that means, the line goes dead.

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The very next day while at work cashiering, Audrey meets Sebastian (Sam Heughan) and they seem to have a connection. Leaving work, Sebastian shows up only to force her into a van to tell her who he really is and what Drew’s true occupation is – a spy. Returning home to tell Morgan the serious news, Drew shows up and bullets start to fly. Hit by one of them, he manages to tell her to take a small statue to Vienna where someone is waiting to take it.

Audrey and Morgan take off to LAX and the adventure starts! Following Drew’s final instructions, Audrey is stunned to see Sebastian show up and another hail of bullets. Once again the two women escape the mayhem as Morgan calls her parents Carol (Jane Curtin) and Arnie Freeman (Paul Reiser) who inform them that they are on the news. Determined to help they are sent to a friend Prague and the women discover a flash drive hidden by Drew.

Now they have Sebastian following along with killer model/gymnast Nadedja (Ivanna Sakhno) and others who can’t be trusted all wanting what they girls have. When it all goes horribly wrong Sebastian is under the thumb of his boss but that doesn’t stop them from discovering what’s on the flash drive and how to stop everyone killing for it.

It’s time for the girls to gun up, show what they are made of and what happens when a spy dumps you!

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Kunis as Audrey is the young woman who thought she’d found love but instead found a boyfriend who isn’t exactly boyfriend material. Coming off the hot streak of BAD MOMS, Kunis has proven she has the ability to do straight comedy and then wrack up the points until she comes out kissing or shooting. In this case she has a chance to do both.

McKinnon as Morgan, ummmm, Freeman, yes, that’s her characters name, plays off fantastically against Kunis. They each have their strengths and it works like magic with McKinnon having the slight quirky edge. She reminds me of, well, me in allot of ways in that people don’t expect some of the things I do or things that fly out of my mouth, this character has both of those traits and I loved every second of it.

Theroux as Drew is the spy who uses people to get what he wants and Audrey is no exception. Having an eye for what people are good at and their weaknesses, he may be good in a fist fight or gun battle but he certainly underestimated the power of a woman who can only be pushed so far. Theroux gets to be a bit of an action hero wrapped up in a second hand James Bond suit and it works.

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Heughan as Sebastian is just the hot, sexy Scotsman that women still go crazy over. Of course it’s difficult to get away from his role as Jamie in the series OUTLANDER (and I’m not helping by mentioning it but hey…) but Heughan is giving it one heck of a lovely try. Playing third fiddle to Kunis and McKinnon isn’t easy but he makes it work out just fine.

Sakhno as the model/gymnast/psycho killer Nadedja is frakken fantastic! She has the right amount of creepy and a dash of psycho all wrapped up in the Brigitte Nielsen haircut and spooky eyes. I bought every second of it and cracked up more than a few times.

Now lets talk about Curtis as Mom Carol and Reiser as Dad Arnie – why can’t these two by my parents? They give such an endearing, charming, hilarious bit to the film and I couldn’t get enough of them. The quirk works and I’d love to see these two do a movie as these characters!

Other cast include Hasan Minhaj as Duffer, Fred Melamed as Roger, Tom Stourton as Edward Snowden, James Fleet as Tom, Mirjam Novak as Verne and Gillian Anderson as Wendy.

Lionsgate is a global leader in motion picture production and distribution for theatres, television, home entertainment and more. Theatre franchises include THE HUNGER GAMES, and DIVERGENT along with JOHN WICK. Now, adding this film to it’s 16,000 motion picture and television titles you can see everything coming soon as well as available now at http://www.lionsgate.com.

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THE SPY WHO DUMPED ME includes the Special Features of Covert Operations: The Making of THE SPY WHO DUMPED ME, Gary Powell: The King of Action, Makin’ Friends with Hasan Minhaj, Deleted Scenes, Outtakes and Off Script.

You know, it’s hard to do a buddy comedy film and even more difficult when the gals get in on the act. It’s important to find two actresses who can handle a script like this – Kunis and McKinnon handled it hilariously. This film has laughs and action in equal measure with twists and turns just in case the other two weren’t enough for you.

THE SPY WHO DUMPED ME is so much fun that it is one that can be watched again and again and find something new to giggle about. Available on Bluray and DVD is cool but the film is also available in 4K Ultra HD to include both Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos in a combo pack. You know, just in case you want to turn up the stunning picture and awesome volume.

The gals get Theroux and Heughan and the guys get Kunis and McKinnon in action, laughs and a few surprises so prepare for it all with THE SPY WHO DUMPED ME!

In the end – minimum experience and maximum damage but they got this!

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