THE FOUNDER: Patrick Wilson, who lives in Montclair with his wife, the actress Dagmara Dominczyk, is on a roll. He delivered arguably the best performance of his career in "A Kind of Murder" and enjoyed a hit with "The Conjuring 2." In "The Founder," he plays a small but pivotal role as a restaurateur who convinces the fast-food billionaire Ray Kroc (Michael Keaton) that greed is good. When we first glimpse Kroc, he's a struggling salesman who, by chance, encounters Mac (John Carroll Lynch) and Dick (Nick Offerman) McDonald and instantly realizes that their speedy system of making food has franchise potential. But the McDonalds aren't greedy men and urge quality first. "The Founder" details how Kroc was able to rip McDonald's away from the McDonalds. It's a fascinating, astonishingly timely tale that doubles as an allegory of cutthroat American capitalism. On VOD, Blu-ray and DVD.
TEEN TITANS: THE JUDAS CONTRACT: As if playing Zelda Fitzgerald in "Z: The Beginning of Everything" and Lizzie Borden in "The Lizzie Borden Chronicles" wasn't enough to keep the Montclair-reared Christina Ricci busy, she found time to lend her tonsil power to this feature-length cartoon based on the popular D.C. comic book. With their familiar foe Deathstroke (Miguel Ferrer) and ancient evil Brother Blood (Gregg Henry) rising, the tireless crime-fighters pull out all of the stops to dispose of the malicious forces. Ricci isn't the only Garden Stater saving the world; Kevin Smith of Red Bank and Taissa Farmiga of Readington also voice key characters. On VOD, Blu-ray and DVD.
THE MEPHISTO WALTZ: A year before he landed his life-changing role as Hawkeye on "M*A*S*H," longtime Leonia resident Alan Alda starred in this new-to-Blu-ray horror thriller that encompasses lust, ambition and Satan worship. Alda plays a failed musician-turned-music critic whose interview with a reclusive maestro (Curt Jurgens) sets the stage for plenty of weirdness. Part "Faust" story and part body-swapping horror show, "The Mephisto Waltz" allows Alda to transform from the nice guy husband of a loving wife (Jacqueline Bisset) into an egotistical maniac lusting after his own daughter (Barbara Parkins). It's spellbinding to see Alda settle into such a dark groove. On Blu-ray.
BEST OF VOD
SPLIT: M. Night Shyamalan's comeback continues with this outrageously entertaining thriller that, despite recycling some familiar horror movie tropes, manages to feel effortlessly fresh and exciting. James McAvoy stars as Kevin, a schizophrenic with 23 personalities who kidnaps three teenagers and holds them prisoner in his underground lair. The high-schoolers are in a race against time to escape before McAvoy's beastly 24th personality emerges. Shyamalan orchestrates the slow reveal of information like the Hitchcock fanatic he is. "Split" is proof that the filmmaker behind "The Sixth Sense" and "Signs" finally has his mojo back. On VOD, Blu-ray and DVD.
THREE: The great Hong Kong director Johnnie To ("Drug War") doesn't disappoint with his latest blast opera, a slam-bang mixture of John Woo's "Hard Boiled" and "Die Hard." The setting is an overcrowded emergency room where three lost souls collide. There's a neurosurgeon (Vicki Zhao) desperate to redeem her reputation, a police officer (Louis Koo) determined to right a wrong, and a criminal (Wallace Chung) who's slowly dying of a bullet wound to the head. Unlike many Hollywood action films, the plot unfolds fluidly rather than frantically. But To knows how to maintain suspense too. And the finale? Hang on tight for a shoot-em-up to end all shoot-em-ups. On VOD, Blu-ray and DVD
BEST OF DVD & BLU-RAY
THE HANDMAID'S TALE: In an era of debate over Planned Parenthood funding, Volker Schlondorff's adaptation of Margaret Atwood's futuristic thriller is more resonant than ever before. When the movie begins, the ultra-right are in power and women are only allowed to be wives, servants or surrogate mothers. Thanks to years of non-stop pollution, most women are infertile. Those who can bear children, like Kate (Natasha Richardson), are forced to become breeders for elites like the Commander (Robert Duvall) and his wife (Faye Dunaway). Now on Blu-ray, just in time for the forthcoming Hulu mini-series, this movie will give you something to think about for days afterward. On Blu-ray.
WOMAN OF THE YEAR: The first of nine movies starring Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy, this honey of a romantic comedy still dazzles 75 years after it was first released. Tracy and Hepburn play newspaper reporters who fall in love and get married, but it's only after she's about to lose Spence that Kate sees the error of her workaholic ways. Hepburn has never looked better or sounded smarter than she does as a political columnist with ink in her veins, while Tracy makes his nice-guy sports writer effortlessly charming. The director, George Stevens, knows how to dish out the banter but it's Hepburn and Tracy's explosive chemistry that makes the movie so much fun. On Blu-ray and DVD
DONNIE DARKO: If David Lynch had directed "Harvey," the results might look a lot like this mind-bendingly weird yarn that ranks as the first cult classic of the new millennium. Jake Gyllenhaal stars as a troubled teenager who is told by his imaginary friend -- a 6-foot-tall rabbit named Frank -- that the world will end in 28 days. Donnie, who's seemingly caught in a weird time loop, must navigate his attraction to a new girl (Jena Malone) at school, avoid death by a falling jet engine and repair the space-time continuum with help from a woman called Grandma Death. It doesn't quite hang together but it's one heck of a conversation-starter. On Blu-ray.
BEST OF STREAMING
SAND CASTLE: The latest Netflix original movie is being billed as "an honest and candid depiction" of the Iraq War. The action unfolds through the eyes of a group of American soldiers whose mission is to repair the water system in a remote and very hostile village. Nicholas Hoult, Henry Cavill and Logan Marshall-Green star in the flick, which is based on an autobiographical script by Chris Roessner, who was once stationed in the Persian Gulf. On Netflix
BILL NYE SAVES THE WORLD: SEASON 1: Bill Nye, who's best known for his Emmy-winning PBS series "Bill Nye the Science Guy," returns with a new series exploring a handful of scientific issues including global warming. Nye brings experts and famous guests to his lab,not only to chat about his theories but also to test them out. Expect the Grammy nominee electro house musician Steve Aoki and the Golden Globe-winning actress Rachel Bloom to make appearances. On Netflix.
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