It may not have won all the Academy Awards earlier this week that it was deservedly nominated for (yay for Alicia Vikander for winning, though!), The Danish Girl is still hands down one of the best movies of 2015.
The story of Lili Elbe (Academy Award-nominee Eddie Redmayne) on her journey as a transgender woman is the main story thread here but there is much humanity and character-based exploration in the film, as well. Elbe is married to Gerda Wegener (Vikander) at the start of the story and they love each other as husband and wife would so at first you might wonder where things get complicated. Well, Gerda, an artist, asks Lili to try on some women’s stockings for a project and, well, it opens a door that none of them knew existed. The changes you see on Redmayne’s face throughout the film are a wonder but that doesn’t mean that Vikander doesn’t also have a meaty part of the story. She’s just as much of a wonder as Redmayne in the Tom Hopper-directed movie, which also stars Ben Whishaw, Sebastian Koch, Amber Heard and Matthew Schoenaerts.
The Blu-ray is available now and is a must-have for any library. The release also comes with a fascinating making of featurette that will show you just how much work went into this spectacular film.
Girls: Season 4: By now, we’ve gotten used to the misadventures of the four NYC girls who are all trying to find their respective places in their relationships, family, career and everywhere else imaginable. And whether you’re a fan of creative powerhouse Lena Dunham (who stars, writes, produces and directs the show), there’s something commendable about someone who doesn’t always paint her character in the best light and relishes in exposing the flaws that, come on, we all can relate to more than we often wish. Just as the fifth season has started airing, it’s not too late to delve back into the previous season to see the major changes that came along for Hanna, Marnie, Jessa and Zosia (and, of course, my gay favorite, Elijah, played by the fab Andrew Rannells.)
Here is a deleted scene featuring Rannells:
Fargo: Season 2: Who knew the sophomore season of the FX hit series could top the first but, in my opinion, it did exactly that. The second season of Fargo takes us back to 1979 in Sioux Falls, South Dakota and Luverne, Minnesota, where we meet a young Lou Solverson (Patrick Wilson taking over for Keith Carradine, who played Lou in the first season) who, as State Police Officer, investigates a murder at a diner. Of course, this is Fargo so it’s never that simple and soon we’re embroiled in a web that features some of the most memorable characters played by the most memorable actors (Jean Smart, Kirsten Dunst, Jesse Plemons, Ted Danson, Brad Garrett, Bokeem Woodbine, Jeffrey Donovan, Angus Sampson and Kieran Culkin. Special Features include Lou on Lou: A Conversation with Wilson, Carradine and creator Noah Hawley, Waffles and Bulletholes, The Films of Ronald Reagan, The True History of Crime in the Midwest and the Skip Sprang commercial. This one is a must-have, folks.
Togetherness: Complete First Season: You’ve loved the films and TV projects of brothers Jay and Mark Duplass for years but their HBO comedy, Togetherness, is a show that draws its laughs from the four adults living under one roof who are all working (or struggling may be more accurate) to keep their relationships and dreams alive as 40-something looms. Besides Mark Duplass’s portrayal of Brett, the cast also includes Melanie Lynskey (Brett’s wife, Michelle), Steve Zissis (as Brett’s BFF Alex) and Amanda Peet (as Michelle’s sister, Tina). Calling the show a tragic comedy is almost selling it short but the laughs are there and you may even find a heartfelt moment or two. Check out the first season now on DVD or Blu-ray.
The Andy Griffith Show: Complete Series: With all the intense things going on in the world and the often intense television series out there, are you needing to go back to a simpler time? Then you need to get the just-released DVD release of all 249 episodes of The Andy Griffith Show, which was just released by CBS/Paramount home video. Starring Andy Griffith, Don Knotts (RIP, Don!), Ron Howard, George Lindsay and Francis Bavier as Aunt Bee, there’s no more wholesome sitcom on the market. The series ran for eight seasons and the fact that it’s still watched and talked about today proves that it’s never a bad thing to venture to the past for your entertainment.