New Releases for Tuesday, April 5, 2016


Cherry Tree

Genre: Horror Directed by: David Keating Run time: 86 minutes Rating: Unrated Format: Blu-Ray The Lowdown: We need more good movies about witches. It’s a small but growing subgenre of horror that has never truly had its proper day.

But with films like Cherry Tree, and the critically acclaimed theatrical release “The Witch,” it seems like maybe people are starting to pay attention.

Cherry Tree is an absolute blast. It’s dark, gory as hell and blessed with a vibrant eroticism that adds a delicious tingle to its story about a young girl with a dying father who makes an unfortunate commitment that she doesn’t truly understand.

Director David Keating previously helmed “Wake Wood,” a Hammer-style horror film that was long on mood and build-up but not necessarily thrilling and pulse-pounding. He definitely course corrects with Cherry Tree, serving up one gruesome episode after another, while concocting a vibrant vision of witchcraft at its most evil incarnate.

Is Cherry Tree a perfect film? No. It has gaps in logic, some predictable swerves and the ending employs one of the worst tropes in horror, but it all comes together impressively well for an immersive, creepy experience.

This is one to definitely check out.

The Stuff You Care About: Hot chicks – Very hot. Nudity – Gratuitous. Gore – Considerable. Drug use – Depends on what you define as a drug. Bad Guys/Killers – Witches, man. Buy/Rent – Buy it.

The Hallow (Shout! Factory, 97 minutes, Unrated, Blu-Ray): Writer-director Corin Hardy has crafted a taunt, effective home invasion/creature feature that introduces some truly unnerving monsters. The Hallow is a cautionary tale and a fairy tale all in one. It takes urban legend and amplifies the muffled whispers of rural villagers into a full-blown subterranean assault. More than I loved The Hallow, I walked away with a confidence and deep curiosity as to what Hardy might create next. He is truly a director that should be on your radar.

#Horror (Shout! Factory, 90 minutes, Unrated, Blu-Ray): Writer-director Tara Subkoff’s melodramatic slasher is the film equivalent of a daytime soap complete with over-the-top turns by stars Chloë Sevigny and Timothy Hutton as estranged parents. It’s also a finger-on-the-pulse thriller about the dangers of cyber bullying and what might happen when one pre-teen girl simply can’t take any more “mean girl” abuse. And, at times, it’s a complete mess awash in curious candy-coated animation and selfish millennial angst. Is it good? That’s a matter of personal taste. Is it watchable? Highly, frustratingly so.

The Hoarder (Image Entertainment, 86 minutes, Unrated, DVD): Poor Mischa Barton. The former star of Fox’s “The O.C.” just can’t catch a break. She’s better known for tabloid fodder than her growing IMDb acting portfolio. And she shouldn’t expect The Hoarder to change that any time soon. The Hoarder is a silly, illogical, undercooked horror feature about a self-storage facility with a dark secret kept chained deep within a subterranean chamber. Barton stars as a woman convinced her fiancé is keeping secrets from her, so she steals his ID card key and goes to the storage facility to check out his super-private bunker. Of course, there’s also a handful of other folks randomly wandering the facility as it’s about to close. One of those poor, sad sacks is Robert

Knepper. who plays so far over-the-top that you eventually wonder if he’s going to pop his tether and float off screen like a helium balloon. The Hoarder isn’t even competent enough to mask its lack of originality by populating its seemingly interminable run time with crazy kills. Personally, I have seen episodes of A&E’s “Hoarders” that are more unsettling.

Also Available:

Banshee: The Complete Third Season The Expanse: Season One Identicals Mojave Stealing Cars Tumbledown Dixieland Riot Veteran Casual: The Complete First Season The Von Trapp Family: A Life of Music House of Lies: The Fourth Season The Odd Couple: Season One Episodes: The Fourth Season