‘Parasite,’ fresh off SAG Awards stunner, hits Blu-ray with Bong Joon Ho interview
New on Blu-ray
“Parasite” (Universal DVD, $22.98; Blu-ray, $34.98; also available on VOD)
Underdog winner of the top prize at the Screen Actors Guild Awards last weekend, “Parasite” now pivots toward the Oscars with six nominations, including best picture and director. It’s the first South Korean movie to be nominated for the motion picture academy’s international feature film award — just another bit of history “Parasite” has made since winning the Palme d’Or at Cannes last year. Writer-director Bong Joon Ho’s wickedly entertaining thriller follows a scrappy working-class family that worms its way into the lives of a rich couple and their kids, only to find an unpleasant surprise awaiting them in their employers’ fancy house. Bong’s masterpiece is remarkably savvy about the devastating effects of income inequality, but the main reason the film has become such a global hit is that its twisty, violently shocking story is filled with memorable characters made painfully aware of exactly what money can and can’t buy.
[Special features: A Bong interview]
“Mystify: Michael Hutchence” (available now)
Michael Hutchence fronted a band that filled arenas worldwide and sold millions of records, but as Richard Lowenstein’s impassioned documentary argues, the late INXS singer still might have been one of the most underrated rock stars of his generation. Compiled from rare archival and home movie footage — and featuring input from friends and colleagues like Kylie Minogue and Bono — this film shares revealing anecdotes from Hutchence’s private life alongside well-argued appreciations of his musicality and stage presence. It’s a fascinating movie for fans and nonfans alike.
TV set of the week
“Ballers: The Complete Fifth and Final Season” (HBO DVD, $19.98; also available on VOD)
For five seasons, the HBO series turned the complexities of the modern professional sports business into ripped-from-the-headlines drama and bawdy comedy. Though the show mostly offered breezy entertainment, it also dealt frankly with the pressures of living in the public eye, considering how athletes and their support teams try to keep the money flowing through the seemingly constant threat of a career-ending scandal or injury. When it debuted, the series was notable for featuring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as an executive producer and lead actor, but it could also one day be looked back on as the first showcase for John David Washington, who showed here why he’s probably destined to become a movie star himself (just like his father, Denzel).
[Special features: Commentary tracks and deleted scenes]
From the archives
“All About My Mother” (Criterion DVD, $29.95; Blu-ray, $29.95)
Widely regarded as Pedro Almodóvar’s finest film (despite formidable competition), the 1999 tearjerker stars Cecilia Roth as Manuela, a nurse who loses her teenage son in a traffic accident and then travels from Madrid to Barcelona, where she becomes a friend, caregiver and mother figure to an eclectic community of artists and sex workers. Though less outrageous and more “mature” than Almodóvar’s groundbreaking ’80s movies, this Oscar winner is still colorful and provocative and features the writer-director’s usual frankness about sexual desire, in the context of characters grappling with their own mortality.
[Special features: New and vintage featurettes]
Three more to see
“Harriet” (Universal DVD, $29.98; Blu-ray, $34.98; also available on VOD); “Motherless Brooklyn” (Warner Bros. DVD, $28.98; Blu-ray, $35.99; also available on VOD); “Ms. Purple” (Oscilloscope Blu-ray, $39.99)
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