Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2022)

Ryan Coogler’s “Wakanda Forever” is not the sequel we expected, it’s not the sequel anyone expected, especially with the untimely death of Chadwick Boseman. His loss left a gaping hole in film, and left sadly a budding franchise without its lead. “Wakanda Forever” takes the chance to not only act as a sequel to “Black Panther” but also act as a meditation on the ideas of grief, mourning, and the cost of losing those that we dearly loved in our lives who were important to many.

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Violent Night (2022)

Every now and then we need one of these silly, slapstick, self aware action adventures, and “Violent Night” fits the bill. It watches like a sketch on SNL, adapted in full length form. From minute one, it never forgets what kind of movie it is and paints a crude stroke over the Christmas spirit. For its intended audience, it’s a refreshing antidote to typical holiday fare. Tommy Wirkola’s “Violent Night” is “Die Hard,” and Michael Dougherty’s “Krampus,” meets “Bad Santa,” with full shot of Christmas adrenaline.

It also props Santa Claus up as something of a major bad ass.

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Thriller: A Cruel Picture (1973): Special Edition [Blu-ray/DVD]

Known as “Hooker’s Revenge,” and as “They Call Her One Eye,” Bo Arne Vibernius’s “Thriller” is the quintessential grindhouse revenge pic that begat so many after it. When you want to visit what helped influence Tarantino, “Thriller” (Vinegar Syndrome will debuting their own release of the film on 4K Ultra-HD Blu-ray with a different transfer and extras this summer) is where the template was established. While it suffers from narrative flaws here and there, “Thriller” is pure visceral exploitation revenge cinema that still feels about as grimy and gritty as “I Spit On Your Grave” in spite of its restoration.

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Injustice: Gods Among Us (2021) [4K UHD/Blu-Ray/Digital]

As a bit of warning, I never played the “Injustice” video game series, nor have I ever read any of the comic books or spin offs. I’m vaguely aware of what the general premise is of “Injustice,” but that’s as far as it goes for me. Considering I was excited about it being adapted in to an animated movie, when the dust settled, I’m very disappointed by what we’re ultimately offered. What is it about DC and Warner unwilling to make a movie that’s longer than eighty minutes? It can’t possibly be for the child audience, as “Injustice” is as gory an Elseworlds tale that I’ve ever seen.

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You Have to See This! The Losers (2010)

Streaming On: HBO Max, Youtube, Google Play, and Amazon Prime Video

In 2010 movie fans were given two action movies about a group of ragtag military outcasts doing everything they could to prove their innocence and fight a domestic terrorist. There was the long awaited “A-Team” revival and “The Losers.” The latter was based on a comic series from Vertigo comics of the same name, and wouldn’t you know it? The “A-Team” movie ended up being one big rotten egg, while “The Losers” was everything the aforementioned film should have been and received zero fanfare. It’s a damn shame that a decade later, “The Losers” is so utterly unappreciated and overlooked, because—again—this is the type of movie “A-Team” should have been.

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Street Fighter (1994): Steelbook [Blu-Ray]

Oh brother, you could build a wonderful documentary around the making of Steven E. De Souza’s “Street Fighter” that would be so much better than the actual movie. The behind the scenes tale of the making of what was supposed to be a blockbuster film is absolutely fascinating, funny, and just downright entertaining. In 1991, the video game “Street Fighter” virtually changed the face of video games, pop culture, and competitive gaming forever. Universal Pictures led the charge in banking on the game’s success by adapting the hit video game in to a feature film.

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