MOVIES

'The Walk' a dazzling re-creation of daredevil walk between World Trade Center towers

The Walk

Sony, $30.99; Blu-ray, $34.99/$40.99

Available on VOD on Tuesday

Audiences didn't exactly flock to Robert Zemeckis' film in the fall, perhaps because too many prestige movies opened around the same time — or perhaps because the subject of daredevil Philippe Petit's 1974 high-wire jaunt between the World Trade Center towers was well covered already by the 2008 documentary "Man on Wire." Nevertheless, aside from some excessive whimsy during its first hour, this is a stirring piece of filmmaking, with dazzling effects and camera moves that re-create the big event so convincingly that viewers often end up with sweaty palms and fluttery stomachs. Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays Petit, bringing every bit of his natural grace and joie de vivre. He and the film both deserve more love. The DVD and Blu-ray come with a few brief featurettes, explaining some of how Zemeckis made the magic happen.

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Sicario

Lionsgate, $29.95; Blu-ray, $39.99

Available on VOD on Tuesday

Benecio Del Toro stands out in writer-director Denis Villeneuve's film, playing a shadowy drug-warrior who helps initiate Emily Blunt's feisty FBI agent into the moral complexities of narco border skirmishes. Just like Villeneuve's 2013 movie "Prisoners," this is a hot-blooded genre picture that takes itself way too seriously. But the performances are outstanding, and the action sequences are impressively nerve-racking. The film as a whole has the feel of a waking nightmare, depicting the violent, lawless world that actually exists anywhere that gangs and cops massacre each other — and any civilians that stand in their way. The DVD and Blu-ray add featurettes.

Experimenter

Magnolia, $26.98; Blu-ray, $29.98

Available now on VOD

Writer-director Michael Almereyda takes an offbeat approach to the biopic in in this look at the culture and controversies surrounding Stanley Milgram's infamous 1961 Yale psychology experiments, in which he convinced participants that they were administering painful electric shocks to an unseen partner. Peter Sarsgaard plays Milgram in a performance that has him looking into the camera and addressing the audience — making us complicit in his studies of obedience and authority. The structural gimmick wears a little thin after a while, but it does help the film explain what these tests were all about. The DVD and Blu-ray go even further, with featurettes about the making of the movie and about Milgram himself.

Fantômas

Kino Classics, $49.95

One of the earliest and most influential motion picture serials, the 1913-14 French thriller was adapted from a series of pulp novels about a masked master criminal and the heroes who worked to bring him to justice. In Europe, the popularity of these five movies (each a little over an hour in length) inspired a wave of adventure epics, which in turn helped shape fantasy-action comics and filmmaking around the world. Kino's new Blu-ray edition contains the complete, restored serial, plus bonus silent shorts from director Louis Feuillade, a featurette about Feuillade and scholarly commentary tracks.

And…

The Complete Lady Snowblood

Criterion, $29.95; Blu-ray, $39.95

Deathgasm

Dark Sky, $24.98; Blu-ray, $29.98

Available now on VOD

Flesh and Bone

Starz/Anchor Bay, $44.98; Blu-ray, $49.99

The Green Inferno

Universal, $22.98; Blu-ray, $29.98

Available on VOD on Tuesday

Infinitely Polar Bear

Sony, $25.99; Blu-ray, $26.99

Available on VOD on Tuesday

Love

Alchemy, $24.99; Blu-ray, $29.99

Over Your Dead Body

Scream! Factory, $14.93; Blu-ray, $19.99

Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse

Paramount, $29.99; Blu-ray, $39.99

Available now on VOD

Shanghai

Starz/Anchor Bay Blu-ray, $26.99

True Detective: The Complete Second Season

HBO, $59.99; Blu-ray, $79.98

The Visit

Universal, $29.98; Blu-ray, $34.98

Available on VOD on Tuesday

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Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times
A version of this article appeared in print on January 03, 2016, in the Entertainment section of the Los Angeles Times with the headline "Daredevil is in his element - NEW RELEASES" — Today's paperToday's paper | Subscribe
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