STORY WRITTEN BY AMY LONGSDORF
For Digital First Media
Described by writer/director Richard Linklater as the spiritual sequel to “Dazed and Confused,” “Everybody Wants Some!!” (2016, Paramount, R, $30) is an occasionally hilarious trip down memory lane which gets every detail about the early 1980s just right.
The amiable Blake Jenner stars as a college freshman who, over the course of a long weekend, gets to know the students he’ll be living with off-campus.
It’s a shame Linklater didn’t concoct a plot to go along with his likeable characters since it’s a bit wearisome watching the buddies do nothing but party, talk baseball and get high. Still, the guys are good company and when Jenner begins a tentative romance with a theater major (Zoey Deutsch), “Everybody” finally finds its sweet spot. Extras: featurettes.
Also New This Week
600 Miles (2016, Lionsgate, R, $20): Here’s a tense thriller which expertly dials up the suspense even as it delivers sharp insights about America’s lenient gun laws. Arnulfo Rubio (Kristyan Ferrer) is a low-level weapons smuggler who buys machine guns in Tucson for Latin-American gangs. During a bust gone wrong, he saves the life of an injured ATF officer (Tim Roth) whom he winds up kidnapping out of desperation. First-time director Gabriel Ripstein shoots the pair’s odyssey through the Mexican wilderness with palm-sweating skill. Extras: none.
Going Away (2015, Cohen, unrated, $25): With her latest feature, actress-turned-director Nicole Garcia uncorks a poetically spare and intimate character study of a substitute school teacher named Baptiste (Pierre Rochefort) who happily drifts from one job to another. One weekend, after being forced to care for one of his students, he winds up falling in love with the youngster’s mother (Louise Bourgoin). Soon, Baptiste is returning to his mother’s (Dominque Sanda) lavish estate and asking for a loan to pay off Bourgoin’s debts. Set against the backdrop of some of the world’s prettiest beaches, “Going Away” is a deceptively sly charmer. It’s only after it’s all over that you appreciate just how deep the film is willing to dig. Extras: none.
The In-Laws (1979, Criterion, PG, $30): One of the funniest films of the 1970s, this madcap classic, now on Blu-ray, is on target from the first scene to the last. Alan Arkin is priceless as a Manhattan dentist who gets caught up in the crazy schemes of mystery man Peter Falk, whose son is marrying Arkin’s daughter. From suburban New Jersey to Hondurus and back again, Arkin and Falk are the ultimate odd couple as they dodge bullets, engage in wild car chases and share a nice marinated chicken with a dictator. Great score by John Morris too. Extras: featurettes and commentaries.
The King and Four Queens (1956, Olive, unrated, $30): Clark Gable’s only film for his production company Gabco is a gorgeously shot widescreen western that really comes alive on Blu-ray. Despite being a big choppy, the oater gives Gable plenty of opportunities to shine. He plays a con man who woos a quartet of widows (Eleanor Parker, Jean Willes, Barbara Nichols, Sara Shane) who might know the location of buried treasure. With a scene-stealing turn by Jo Van Fleet, this Raoul Walsh-directed western is a little-known delight. Extras: none.
Victor/Victoria (1982, Warner Archive, PG, $20): Blake Edwards’ best film overflows with delights, including a feisty turn by Julie Andrews as a woman pretending to be a man pretending to be a woman, snappy musical numbers and a refreshingly progressive take on gender politics. Andrews stars as a singer in 1930s Paris who’s so desperate for a gig, she accepts the advice of a cabaret performer (Robert Preston) and devises a gender-bending act. Now on Blu-ray, this unique songfest is still fresh, funny and surprisingly romantic. Extras: commentary by Andrews and Edwards.
Strange Invaders (1983, Twilight Time, PG, $30): If you’re a fan of cheesy sci-fi flicks from the 1950s, then this affectionate tribute to the genre is sure to put a smile on your face. Paul LeMatt stars as a Columbia professor who discovers that his missing ex-wife (Diana Scarwid) is an alien. With a tabloid reporter (Nancy Allen) in tow, he tries to crack open the case of a small-town in Illinois that’s been taken over by the bug-eyed slime things. Director Michael Laughlin’s breezy style suits the story which makes up in good-natured satire what it lacks in urgency. Extras: commentaries by Laughlin and co-writer Bill Condon.
Belladonna Of Sadness (1974, Cinelicious, unrated, $40): Animation fans, meet your new obsession. Never officially released in the U.S. before, this lost gem from anime and manga masters Osamu Tezuka and Eiichi Yamamoto is unlike anything you’ve seen before. The plot concerns a woman named Jeanne who is viciously assaulted by a local lord on her wedding day. Determined to fight back, she makes a pact with the Devil in order to exact her revenge. Matching the swirling, eye-popping visuals is a pulsing, psych-folk soundtrack by Massahiko Satoh. Extras: featurettes.
The Dresser (2016, Anchor Bay, unrated, $24): Originally broadcast on Starz, the latest adaptation of Ronald Harwood’s World War II-era drama stars Anthony Hopkins and Ian McKellen as, respectively, a Shakespearean actor on the edge of a nervous breakdown and his loyal assistant. With Richard Eyre (“Notes on a Scandal”) behind the camera, “The Dresser” has a lot of energy as McKellen urges Hopkins on stage despite his failing health. Hopkins does a bit too much shouting but this intimate gem remains a must-see ode to the joys — and sorrows — of a life in the theater. Extras: features.