On Video (new releases)February 16, 2017
(Updated Thursday, Feb. 16)
Bad Santa 2 (Comedy, R, 1 hr. 39 min., 2016)
Some 13 years after the fantastic, brutally offensive ‘‘Bad Santa’’ became something of a cult classic, this lazy, crummy-looking, poorly paced, why-bother follow-up lacks the Christmas bells to go full-out politically incorrect. Billy Bob Thornton half-heartedly reprises the title role, with Kathy Bates cracking unfunny jokes as his mother.
Hacksaw Ridge (War drama, R, 2 hrs. 10 min., 2016)
Director Mel Gibson dishes out the symbolism and the sermonizing in blunt and unrelenting fashion in a gruesomely effective and ultraviolent World War II movie about a man (Andrew Garfield, rising to the occasion) who was so nonviolent he refused to pick up a gun, even during combat in Okinawa.
Nocturnal Animals (Drama, R, 1 hr. 57 min., 2016)
Director Tom Ford tells parallel stories of a gallery owner (Amy Adams) reading a novel by her ex as the ex (Jake Gyllenhaal) lives the story. For all of the exquisitely framed and expertly lit sequences, for all the valiant efforts by some of the finest actors around, it left me as cold and unaffected as just about any prestige, A-list project I’ve seen all year.
Manchester By The Sea (Drama, R, 2 hrs. 17 min., 2016)
With this story of a bitter Boston custodian (Casey Affleck) returning to his hometown after his brother’s death, writer-director Kenneth Lonergan has delivered a modern masterpiece reminiscent of the classic, gritty dramas of the 1970s. It’s no easy journey, but my goodness is it brilliant.
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