New on Blu: MANCHESTER BY THE SEA, BAD SANTA 2

Do you even care to know how "gorgeous" the 1080P or 2/4 K scan transfer looks, or how cool the extra features are? By now, you are well-versed in what transfers look like and you know what's coming with the release. You're (hopefully) here because you want to know the experience I had watching this/these film(s). 

New on Blu is a column from film pundit Chase Whale (that's me!), exploring studio, arthouse, underground, exploitation and cult cinema released on Blu-ray and DVD from some of the most cutting-edge independent distributors around the U.S. He talks about the movie and whether it's worth a buy or rent, not how amazing the transfer looks because you already know this system.

Manchester by the Sea

Writer/Director: Kenneth Lonergan
Cast: Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams, Kyle Chandler
Rating: ★★★★★
Buy/Rent: BUY

MANCHESTER BY THE SEA is one of the best movies of the year, as one of the most gut-wrenching films of the year. As an individual who always steps in shit, I can relate to Casey Affleck's Lee Chandler, a man who just keeps fucking up, one relationship and emotional security at a time. There's a reason why Affleck is nominated for a Best Actor Oscar, and will most likely win at the award's ceremony on the 26th of this month. 

There's so much tragedy in MANCHESTER BY THE SEA, but impossible to not recommend because of the realness to these tragedies. It's a powerful reminder that bad things happen all the time, they can keep happening, and sometimes there's no redemption to bad choices. 

Manchester By The Sea [Blu-ray]
Starring Casey Affleck, Kyle Chandler, Lucas Hedges, Liam McNeill

Bad Santa 2

Director: Mark Waters
Writers: Johnny Rosenthal, Shauna Cross
Cast: Billy Bob Thornton, Kathy Bates, Tony Cox, Christina Hendricks, Ryan Hansen, Octavia Spencer
Rating: ★★★
Buy/Rent: RENT

Ok, shut up, of course BAD SANTA 2 doesn't live up to the original, which was an unexpected hit, but I don't think they were trying to. The point of BAD SANTA 2 is just to be over-the-top filthy, and more crass the BAD SANTA while repeating the film's plot. Both were achieved. I didn't think you could top Bill Bob Thornton's asshole, no-shit giving nature, but in BAD SANTA 2, Kathy Bates going toe-to-toe with him and it's glorious. Without her, this movie would not be as fun to watch. Sure, she played a terrifying psychopath (redundant?) in Rob Reiner's MISERY, but since then, I've seen her as a pure sweetheart. To see her switch gears in her older years, taking on such a vile role, is nothing short of awesome. 

Bad Santa 2 [Blu-ray]
Starring Billy Bob Thornton, Kathy Bates, Tony Cox