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August DVDs

’Cause This Is Thriller

Fans of HBO’s vampire series “True Blood” will be pleased to see its stars, and real-life couple, Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer making an appearance in the horror/thriller Open House, written and directed by Paquin’s brother Andrew.

The premise of this fright flick is that a well-to-do couple, who are teetering towards a nasty split, must sell their home and hold an open house to help them accomplish the task.

The only problem with said scenario is that one of their lookiloos (Brian Geraghty) has stayed behind and winds up moving in with nary a realtor in sight, as he holds one part of the soon-to-be exes, Alice (Rachel Blanchard), hostage in the basement.

Available August 3.

 

Two-time Oscar-winning actor Michael Caine stars as Harry Brown, a man with a mission and a score to settle in the Charles Bronson Death Wish way, which means that he is out for justice, vigilante-style.

As the title character, Caine becomes consumed by a vengeance that must be rectified, which was caused by the death of his only friend Leonard (David Bradley) at the hands of teenage anarchy run amok in his British homeland.

The film’s tagline of “every man has a breaking point” is showcased by a performance which is hailed as “intriguing and unnerving entertainment with grave intelligence and contained ferocity,” according to USA Today. Available August 31.

Ewan McGregor stars as The Ghostwriter, who has been assigned to anonymously write the memoirs of a former British Prime Minister (Pierce Brosnan) and is informed by his agent that the gig is the opportunity of a lifetime.

Except that the former ghostwriter on the project ended up meeting with an unfortunate “accident.”

The successful British ghostwriter, known in literary circles as “The Ghost,” begins to wonder if he’ll end up living up to his moniker, especially after Brosnan’s character is accused of authorizing war crimes during his time in office.

“The Ghost” begins to scare up clues hidden in the unfinished manuscript that his predecessor left behind; while it quickly dawns on him that his own life is in jeopardy with every stone that he doesn’t leave unturned.

The Ghostwriter, directed by Roman Polanski, also co-stars Kim Cattrall, Tom Wilkinson and Timothy Hutton. Available August 3.

 Classic Fare

Kim Novak is best known for her role opposite James Stewart in director Alfred Hitchcock’s 1958 noir thriller Vertigo. However the actress headlined her fair share of Hollywood films primarily during the 1950s and ’60s, and five of these movies have been digitally remastered and repackaged as The Kim Novak Collection.

In 1955, Novak starred as a small-town beauty queen who falls under the charms of a drifter portrayed by William Holden in Picnic. The 1957 film adaptation of the smash Broadway musical Pal Joey saw the actress re-team with her The Man with the Golden Arm co-star Frank Sinatra, while that same year she received top billing as real-life stage star Jeanne Eagels.

Novak starred alongside Stewart for a second time in 1958 in Bell, Book and Candle, a modern-day take on witchcraft that has been said to be the inspiration for the beloved TV series “Bewitched.” 1959’s Middle of the Night rounds out the collection with Novak’s turn as Betty Preisser, a 24-year-old divorced secretary that becomes romantically entangled with her 56-year-old boss (Fredric March). Available August 3.  

  

Summer Camp

 

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water, along comes the DVD release of the 1978 Jaws rip-off Piranha. Oscar nominated screenwriter John Sayles cut his film writing teeth on this tale of toothy mutated killer fish.

Stars Bradford Dillman and Heather Menzies frantically try to stop a feeding frenzy from happening at a kids summer camp and river-based amusement park, respectively; while Invasion of the Body Snatchers actor Kevin McCarthy hams it up as a scientist responsible for engineering the ravenous strain of flesh-eating fish, for an aborted Vietnam era experiment known as “Operation: Razorteeth.”

Director Joe Dante (Gremlins) helmed this Roger Corman-produced cult classic, which is getting the remake treatment this summer as Piranha 3-D. Available August 3.  

TV On DVD

Now that “Lost” has bid adieu for good on the small screen when its series finale, “The End,” aired on May 23, fans now have a chance to revisit the mysterious island, and its inhabitants, in their entirety with the release of Lost: The Complete Collection.

The box set features all six seasons about the passengers of the ill-fated Oceanic Airlines 815’s quest to unravel the island’s puzzles, including The Smoke Monster, The Dharma Initiative and character storylines with Jack (Matthew Fox), Kate (Evangeline Lily), Sawyer (Josh Holloway) and the rest that went backwards, forwards and sideways. Among the 38 discs that make up the compilation is one solely devoted to never-before-seen content. Available August 24.  

About timparksmediaho

I am a self professed Media Ho, which is the nicer version of being a Media Whore. My mother actually inspired me to come up with the term

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