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New on Disc: 'Sexy Beast' and more …

2 Sep, 2013 By: Mike Clark

Sexy Beast (Blu-ray)

Available via ScreenArchives.com
Twilight Time, Drama, $29.95 Blu-ray, ‘R’ for pervasive language, strong violence and some sexuality.
Stars Ray Winstone, Ben Kingsley, Ian MacShane, Amanda Redman.
Firmly and almost immediately ensconced as one of the great British gangster movies of all time, director Jonathan Glazer’s feature debut got super reviews at the time and a much-deserved Oscar nomination for Ben Kingsley. Yet, if anything, it seems to have mellowed into an even more kinetic slice of nastiness today. Sun-baked for ideal Blu-ray presentation until the narrative takes us underwater for its climax, a constant payoff never outstays its welcome at just 89 minutes. In a way, the movie reflects the professionalism of lead Ray Winstone’s safecracker by getting in, doing its job and getting out so we (and he) can all go home. Glazer directs a smart Louis Mellis-David Scinto screenplay to the hilt, and this is a movie that gets maximum punch out of every bit of dialogue or reaction shot the way many of today’s best pay-cable series do. Twilight Time’s presentation, robust soundtrack included, is among its best.
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Niagara (Blu-ray)

Fox, Drama, $24.99 Blu-ray, NR.
Stars Marilyn Monroe, Joseph Cotten, Jean Peters, Casey Adams.
Niagara definitely has most of the preferred noir elements: premeditated murderous intentions, a bombshell wife who’s fooling around and a noirish kind of backdrop song (“Kiss”). Niagara came out first in the year of 20th Century Fox’s big push for Marilyn Monroe in headlining marquee roles. You could easily get two more movies about the courtship rituals of the yarn’s plot-central couples. The movie is shrewdly full of what used to be called “scenic values.”
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