To heck with “Go West”: This week we Go East with the release of a handful of queer and sexy films by acclaimed Hong Kong director Scud. Not to be outdone, equally prolific queer filmmaker David De Coteau brings us yet another twink and beefcake-riddled entry, 1313: Bermuda Triangle. Everyone and their mother pops up in New Year’s Eve, the thematic follow-up to 2010’s Valentine’s Day. And we’ve also got a film called W.E. (above). Some chick named Madonna directed it? Google that name for us, won’t you?
($39.99 BluRay, $29.99 DVD, Anchor Bay)
Co-written by Truth or Dare collaborator Alek Keshishian, Madonna’s second stab at directing—after the critical bomb Filth & Wisdom—juxtaposes the historical romance between King Edward VIII (James D’Arcy) and Baltimore socialite Wallis Simpson (Andrea Riseborough) with the plight of unhappy ’90s waif Wally Winthrop (Abbie Cornish), who just happens to be obsessed with the historical couple. Roger Ebert called W.E. “elegant, ambitious and relentlessly monotonous,” but Honey Badger (and us gays) don’t give a shit. It’s chock full of fabulousity, pretty costumes and Darcy’s sleek visage. The DVD bonuses are less than royal, though: A lone 20-minute featurette, The Making of ‘W.E.’ Featuring Madonna, is the only extra we get! No commentary, Madge?
($29.99 DVD, Media Luna)
For years, gay Chinese filmmaker Scud has told edgy, graphic and atmospheric queer tales set in Hong Kong and they’re finally coming stateside! 2010’s Amphetamine chroniclies the dysfunctional relationship between a wealthy businessman and a cash-strapped junkie swimming instructor who happens to be straight. Three other Scud films also drop this week: the messy gay-falls-for-a-straight guy heart-tugger Permanent Residence; the sexy sports drama City Without Baseball (which stars actual HK baseball players); and 2011’s Love Actually… Sucks!, a series of character studies based upon real-life crimes of passion.
New Year’s Eve
($35.99 Blu-ray, $28.98 DVD; Warner Bros)
Garry Marshall is really scraping the bottom of the barrel here. Actually, he was scraping the barrel with Valentine’s Day, but at least that had a gay subplot with Bradley Cooper and Eric Dane. This one just has more celebrity stars: Halle Berry, Jon Bon Jovi, Jessica Biel, Sarah Jessica Parker, Robert De Niro, Lea Michele, Sofia Vergara, Ashton Kutcher, Katherine Heigl, Michelle Pfeifer and Zac Efron—all of who could do much better than what The New York Times‘ Stephen Holden called “a depressing two-hour infomercial pitching Times Square as the only place in the universe you want to be when the ball drops.” (Well, except maybe Bon Jovi. This is totally up his alley.)
True starfuckers will swoon over the Blu-ray extras, which include featurettes like”The Magic of Times Square,” “Secrets of the Stars” and”Jon Bon Jovi and Lea Michele Rock New Year’s Eve,” an Ultraviolet digital edition of the movie, the usual deleted scenes and a gagworthy gag reel.
1313: Bermuda Triangle
($19.99 DVD, RapidHeart)
A muscular treasure hunter recovers some artifacts that have washed up on shore, but when some young turks try to authenticate his discovery, something diabolical and supernatural goes down. (Of course it does, it’s a David DeCoteau film!) As per the other 1313 titles, there’s a cougar thrown into the mix of scantily-clad lads—and the same tired house is used as a backdrop! Seriously, is DeCocteau doubling as a real estate broker trying to unload this one property?