DVDs Nuts! 

Lesser-seen OW approved titles

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Cold Fish

This Sion Soto-directed creeper about a woman (Megumi Kagurazaka) stuck in an unhappy marriage, her tropical fish-selling husband and a specialized serial killer was inspired by a true story in which a dog trader killed his clients – of course, the title tells you the killer’s identity has been altered. Recently, bloody-disgusting.com helped bring it to select theaters – those who would host it, that is. One Orlando theater backed out over ratings concerns this summer, which should indicate the level of violence on display. Soto so carefully recreates the killer’s techniques that, at times, it feels morbidly instructional, but as a darkly comedic serial-killer tale, it’s exactingly compelling. (available now)

Special Features: Interviews

I Will Follow

It’s not obvious as to why, but this centralized, intimate grief piece about a young, successful woman (Salli Richardson-Whitfield) struggling with the loss of her close aunt, reminded me of Nick Hornby’s book, How To Be Good, in which a vanilla mother abandons her family and learns to stand on her own, however shakily. The subject matter is different, sure, but both are solely – slavishly – devoted to understanding just one complicated, rewarding woman. And that kind of thing usually swerves into pandering or spirituality or Tyler Perryness very quickly. Written and directed by documentarian Ava DuVernay in her debut narrative feature, I Will Follow avoids all of those traps and stays with our protagonist through thick and thin. Best of all, it has something to say, not to preach. (available now)

Special Features: None

Trollhunter

Although, at times, it treads too clumsily on the grounds of The Blair Witch Project and Cloverfield, this Norwegian “found-footage” experience about a group of college students who discover (and obsessively capture on camera) a mysterious man in a weird van (Otto Jespersen), who happens to track and hunt down gigantic, three-headed, Christian-blood-detecting, vehicle-obliterating trolls, is undeniably fun. As the gruff, tired, troll-hunting veteran, Jespersen serves up a lot to like, especially as he morphs into a reluctant father figure to the kids following him with camcorders. The exquisite local atmosphere and breathtaking mountainous scenery are exciting inclusions that set the film’s mode nearly into travelogue territory. (available now)

Special Features: Making-of featurette, deleted scenes

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