Renters had a better than average chance of taking home a winner this week with three of the four major releases being better than average fare.
“Lone Survivor” — Four Navy SEALs struggle with an impossible moral decision under the confines of a covert mission to take out an al-Qaeda operative in this excellent adaptation of the popular book. Mark Wahlberg stars and is quite good as the leader of the group, which finds itself facing overwhelming forces while trying to conduct their secret assignment. A tense and beautifully rendered account of modern heroism.
“Robocop” — Every film gets remade nowadays so it was no surprise that “Robocop” got targeted. Surprisingly, this is a less flashy take on the character with Joel Kinnamon playing the police officer who is turned into a cyborg after suffering life-threatening injuries in a shootout. This time around there is less humor and more of an emphasis on how this effects his mental state as well as his family. Very good, especially when it is focusing on domestic drama over the action elements. It doesn’t hurt to have Samuel L. Jackson, Gary Oldman and Michael Keaton on board as well.
“Breaking Bad: The Entire Series” — AMC’s groundbreaking crime drama about a high school chemistry turning over a new leaf after being diagnosed with cancer arrives for just a hundred bucks on Amazon. This is an excellent portrait of a man going through some serious changes when cancer threatens to wipe out every cent he could ever leave to his family. Crime becomes a viable option for the terminally ill Walter White. Unfortunately, he is soon seduced by the power that comes with being a commodity and crosses over into the criminal underworld of Albuquerque, N.M., If you haven’t seen it, now is the time.
“Cowboys vs. Zombies” — Usually, a genre is played out by the time it invites cowboys to play. The production values of this oater/undead opus keep it from being anything other than an eyesore, as a gunman makes a deal with the devil to save a small town from the undead. The Western genre will probably survive this lame effort but zombies could use a rest.