'Barbershop: The Next Cut' on Blu-ray, DVD this week
Posted August 1
Ice Cube’s third Barbershop movie leads new films on Blu-ray and DVD this week.
“Barbershop: The Next Cut” (MGM/Warner, 2016, PG-13, deleted scenes, featurette, bloopers). The third and rather belated entry in this franchise (12 years after the second film) has Ice Cube keeping his South Side Chicago neighborhood barbershop afloat by merging with a beauty shop, but the film’s main concern is with the deteriorating neighborhood and the mayor’s plan to deal with gang violence, which may endanger small businesses. So the barbers, hairstylists and customers try to negotiate a treaty between the gangs.
This film series has always been smart, but this entry tackles social issues in a serious manner without sacrificing the comedy, which makes for a very successful mix in what may actually be a franchise best. Co-stars include Regina Hall, Eve, Anthony Anderson, Nicki Minaj and Common. (Directed by Malcolm D. Lee, cousin to Spike.)
“Sing Street” (Weinstein/Anchor Bay, 2016, PG-13, featurettes). A teen (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) growing up in Dublin during the 1980s is looking for a way to escape his dysfunctional home life when he asks a girl (Lucy Boynton) to star in his band’s music videos. The only trouble is he’s not in a band — not yet anyway. Irish filmmaker John Carney (“Once”) directs this heartfelt coming-of-age comedy-drama about the transformative power of music.
“Grantham & Rose” (Monarch, 2016, not rated/probable PG-13). Grantham (Jake T. Austin) is a troubled teen in youth detention who is talked into taking a road trip with an elderly volunteer (Marla Gibbs, who made her name as the sassy maid on the sitcom “The Jeffersons”), and both find themselves in a learning curve. This sweet comedy-drama has a nice role for 85-year-old Gibbs, and she runs with it. Tessa Thompson also has a nice turn as a girl they pick up along the way.
“OzLand” (MVD, 2016, not rated/probable PG-13). In an apocalyptic future two wanderers are roaming a desolate landscape in search of water. When they stumble upon a copy of “The Wizard of Oz,” the older of the two begins reading it aloud as they travel, and his companion comes to believe it as history. This low-budget, independent film is an interesting but inert allegorical tale that never quite finds its footing.
“Lee Scratch Perry’s Vision of Paradise” (Cadiz Music, 2016, not rated/probable PG-13, deleted scenes, audio commentary, featurette, photo gallery; 24-page book packaging). Eccentric reggae musician Lee “Scratch” Perry is the subject of this entertaining, at times psychedelic documentary. Filmmaker Volker Schaner followed the Jamaican musical icon for 15 years, and the film is supplemented with animation, vintage footage and music, as well as the usual talking heads.
“Listening” (MVD, 2016, not rated/probable PG-13, featurettes, photo/art galleries, trailer). A pair of grad students create a telepathic contraption that enables mind reading in this low-budget sci-fi thriller. But when the government gets wind of it on the heels of its own unsuccessful experiments, the device is seized for use as a weapon.
“River” (Well Go, 2016, not rated/probable R for violence and language). In Laos, after getting into a kerfuffle with an apparent rapist, a surgeon accidentally kills the man and goes on the run in this tension-filled chase yarn. A Canadian film starring Rossif Sutherland (son of Donald Sutherland, brother of Kiefer Sutherland), this one is touted as the first North American movie made in Laos.
“The Boss” (Universal, 2016; R for sex, language, drugs; theatrical and unrated/extended versions, deleted/extended/alternate scenes, featurettes, bloopers). This is a raunchy vehicle for Melissa McCarthy as a ruthless mogul sent to prison for insider trading. Upon release, she moves in with her former assistant (Kristen Bell) and comes up with a scam using a Girl Scouts-like troop of young girls. Peter Dinklage and Kathy Bates co-star.
“Criminal” (Summit/Lionsgate, 2016, R for violence and language, deleted scenes, featurettes, music video). In his second sci-fi mind-switch movie in less than a year (after “Self/less”), Ryan Reynolds is a CIA agent killed during a covert operation, so his memories are implanted into a ruthless criminal (Kevin Costner) to complete the assignment. Tommy Lee Jones, Gary Oldman and Gal Gadot co-star.
“Precious Cargo” (Lionsgate, 2016; R for language, violence, sex; featurettes, trailers). When Bruce Willis gets second billing to Mark-Paul Gosselaar, you can bet he won’t be in the film much. Here, Willis is a mob boss who double-crosses a crook (Gosselaar), so the crook and his posse (including Claire Forlani) plot revenge.
“I am Wrath” (Lionsgate, 2016, R for violence and language, audio commentary). A man (John Travolta) is picked up at the airport by his wife (Rebecca DeMornay), but they’re mugged in the parking lot and the wife is killed. Then corrupt cops bungle the case. Turns out, Travolta is actually a former Black Ops agent, so he goes all Liam Neeson on the bad guys with help from an old buddy (Christopher Meloni).
“The Last Diamond” (Cohen, 2014, R for violence and language, in French with English subtitles, featurettes, trailer). This amusing caper flick holds attention for the first two-thirds but unravels in the final stages as an ex-con jewel thief is lured back into the business for a heist during the auction of a rare diamond. Naturally, he is compromised by feelings for the diamond’s owner.
“Hardcore Henry” (Universal, 2016; R for violence, language, sex, nudity, drugs; deleted scenes, audio commentaries, featurette). Shot entirely from a first-person perspective (which gets old fast), the story has Henry revived from death, seeing his wife kidnapped and then going after the bad guys. It's the ultimate video game movie experience, and that’s not a recommendation.
Chris Hicks is the author of "Has Hollywood Lost Its Mind? A Parent’s Guide to Movie Ratings." He also writes at www.hicksflicks.com and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.