New video: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ continues the fun of Marvel’s zaniest franchise
New on Blu-ray
“Ant-Man and the Wasp” (Disney/Marvel Blu-ray, $24.99; 4K, $29.99; also available on VOD)
The breeziest Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise returns, with Paul Rudd reprising his role as the brilliant thief turned bumbling superhero Scott Lang, and Michael Douglas and Evangeline Lilly back as prickly father-daughter geniuses Hank and Janet Pym. In this outing, the title duo (Rudd and Lily) make plans to explore sub-atomic space, to find Janet’s long-lost mother (Michelle Pfeiffer), while dodging both the cops who want to catch Scott violating his parole and the international criminals who want to steal the Pyms’ tech. As with the first film, director Peyton Reed and his team of screenwriters emphasize imaginative visual gags, using the heroes’ ability to shrink and grow to bring a touch of zaniness to the usual superpowered slug fests.
[Special features: Deleted scenes and extensive featurettes]
“An Evening With Beverly Luff Linn” (available Oct. 19)
Filmmaker Jim Hosking follows up his hilariously disgusting 2016 body-horror exercise “The Greasy Strangler” with the much less repulsive but no less bizarre movie, a surreal comedy made for a small but fanatical cult audience. Aubrey Plaza stars as Lulu Danger, the runaway wife of a venal restaurant manager (played by Emile Hirsch), and Jemaine Clement plays the crook-for-hire who joins Lulu on a quest to meet an inarticulate self-help guru (Craig Robinson). The stream-of-consciousness plotting and intentionally stilted dialogue recall the likes of David Lynch and Tim and Eric, but with a more overtly comic spin. Not everyone will find this film funny, but those who get on its wavelength might have a new favorite.
TV set of the week
“Anna Karenina” (Acorn DVD, $34.99; also available on VOD)
There have been more than a dozen attempts across the decades to adapt Leo Tolstoy’s sprawling novel to the big and small screens, but few more successful than a 2000 British miniseries, written by “The Fall” creator Allan Cubitt. Helen McCrory stars as the Russian aristocrat who pursues a scandalous extramarital affair. Visually lavish, the series sharply criticizes the presumptions and hypocrisies of the upper class, with the help of a superb cast that includes Stephen Dillane as Anna’s politician husband, Kevin McKidd as the privileged military officer she falls for and Mark Strong as the brother whose indiscretions are more easily shrugged off by polite society.
[Special features: None]
From the archives
“City Slickers: Collector’s Edition” (Shout Select Blu-ray, $29.99)
One of the most successful and satisfying comedies of the 1990s, the modern western won a supporting actor Oscar for Hollywood veteran Jack Palance and helped confirm star Billy Crystal’s mastery at playing baby boomers in crisis. Crystal, Daniel Stern and Bruno Kirby costar as best friends who ride along on a cattle drive run by a philosophical old coot (Palance) and have to do the droving for real after tragedy strikes. Craftily written by Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel, with direction by Ron Underwood that both honors the western tradition and gives a funny cast room to riff, it’s a stirring story about middle-age dudes finding renewal in the American Southwest.
[Special features: Deleted scenes, featurettes and an Underwood-Crystal-Stern commentary track]
Three more to see
“Generation Wealth” (Lionsgate DVD, $19.98; also available on VOD); “Unfriended: Dark Web” (Universal DVD, $24.98; Blu-ray, $26.53; also available on VOD); “Whitney” (Lionsgate DVD, $19.98; Blu-ray, $24.99; also available on VOD)
Only good movies
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