By ANGELA DAWSON
Front Row Features
Idris Elba stars in “100 Streets,” arriving on Blu-ray and DVD on Tuesday March 7. A character-driven drama about three stories of love, loss, longing and loneliness across the streets of London, “100 Streets” also stars Gemma Arterton (“Runner, Runner”), Charlie Creed-Miles(“Peaky Blinders), Franz Drameh (“DC’s Legends of Tomorrow”), Kierston Wareing (“Luther”), Tom Cullen (“Black Mountain Poets”) and Ken Stott (“Café Society”).
In his feature directorial debut, British television director Jim O’Hanlon (Emmy and Golden Globe nominated for “Emma” and Emmy and BAFTA nominated for “House of Saddam”) provides a gripping and moving portrayal of individuals faced with real and recognizable struggles outside of the normal stereotypes. “100 Streets” depicts a range of stories that encompass modern-day London. First time writer/producer Leon F. Butler, who penned the script, was keen to make a film about the ‘real’ London, which ultimately resonated with both O’Hanlon and Elba, who observes the hugely diverse city is frequently inaccurately depicted in films.
A nod to “Crash” and “Amores Perros” and inspired by real stories, “100 Streets” explores the inevitable sense of loneliness urban alienation can deliver, a part of life apparent in any big city but very much so a part of the London makeup according to O’Hanlon. In the same 100 streets of London you can find widely different characters from a variety of backgrounds moving socially in very different circles, while living out their lives in the city. The Blu-ray and DVD include a look inside the making of “100 Streets” with director O’Hanlon, Elba and more.
“The Eyes of My Mother,” an official selection of last year’s Sundance Film Festival, is arriving on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD on Tuesday March 7, from Magnolia Home Entertainment. Set at a secluded farmhouse, “The Eyes of My Mother” tells the story of a former surgeon in Portugal, who teaches her daughter, Francisca, to understand anatomy and to be unfazed by death. One afternoon, though, a mysterious visitor horrifyingly shatters the idyll of Francisca’s family life, deeply traumatizing the young girl, but also awakens some unique curiosities.
Shot in black and white, the dark drama depicts its protagonist’s isolation and illuminates her deeply unbalanced worldview. Writer/director Nicolas Pesce’s feature debut allows viewers only an elliptical presence in Francisca’s world, guiding their imaginations to follow her into peculiar, secret places. The haunting film is produced by Max Born, Jacob Wasserman and Schuyler Weiss, and executive produced by Antonio Campos (“Christine”), Sean Durkin (Martha Marcy May Marlene”) and Josh Mond (“James White”). Special features include a behind-the scenes photo gallery, an interview with director Pesce and the theatrical trailer.
Samuel Goldwyn Films and AMBI Group have partnered on the domestic release for the thriller, “Lavender,” available on VOD. Directed by Ed Gass-Donnelly (“The Last Exorcism Part II”) who co-wrote the film with Colin Frizzell (“Resident Evil: Apocalypse”), the film stars Abbie Cornish (“Limitless”), Diego Klattenhoff (TV’s “The Blacklist”), Justin Long (“Live Free or Die Hard”) and Dermot Mulroney (“My Best Friend’s Wedding”). Cornish plays a photographer who suffers severe memory loss after a traumatic accident. Strange clues amongst her photos suggest she may be responsible for the deaths of family members she never knew she had. Long plays a psychiatrist who helps her recover lost memories.
Produced by Dave Valleau (“Capote”) and Ed Gass-Donnelly, “Lavender” is executive produced by Andrea Iervolino (“The Merchant of Venice”), Monika Bacardi (“The Humbling”), Tex Antonucci (“The Entitled”), Emily Alden (“Mountain Men”) and Jennifer Levine (“G.B.F.”). “Lavender” is the second collaboration between the two companies, which will release the Simon Aboud film, “This Beautiful Fantastic,” on Friday March 10.
On Tuesday March 7, Random Media and BBA Studios debut the inspiring and irreverent comedy/romance “Frank vs. God,” on DVD, iTunes and VOD. Starring Henry Ian Cusick (“Lost”) and Ever Carradine (“Shameless”), the film is written and directed by Stewart Schill (“The Space Between Us”), and tells the story of a man who sues God, after his home is destroyed and his insurance company declines coverage, deeming the destruction an Act of God.
David Frank (Cusick) is a mess. A wounded lion. His spirit shattered by the death of his wife, the formerly successful corporate attorney spends days in his bathrobe with his only real companion, his beloved bulldog, Brutus. But while away on a trip to visit his beloved niece Lucy, just outside of Orlando, a Tornado threatens to destroy his house. David races home in a heroic effort to save poor Brutus, but is stopped by the police and watches helplessly as the dark funnel of destruction sucks up the house, and the dog, like a “Wizard of Oz” nightmare, the punishing finger of God. Then, adding insult to injury, the insurance company tells him they won’t pay because the damage falls under the Act of God clause in his policy. David is livid. But then he gets the bright idea to sue God Himself for damages, naming representatives of all different faiths as co-defendants. Fueled by a megalomaniacal and opportunistic judge, a beautiful but damaged defense attorney, and David’s own sharply-honed legal gymnastics, what starts out as a crazy, radical stunt ultimately becomes a very deep and soulful journey.
In addition to Cusick and Carradine, “Frank vs. God” stars Natalya Oliver, Brian Brightman, Ben Cohen and Michael Houston King. Alan Pruzan, Scott Schill, Jillian Stein, Jeff Merriman-Cohen and Daniel Springen produced the film.
Erin Bethea stars in the romantic drama “New Life,” available on DVD and digital platforms Tuesday March 7 DVD She also wrote and produced the film, which is her first foray into the mainstream, following a series of popular faith-based projects. Bethea made her feature film debut in the lead role opposite Kirk Cameron in “Fireproof” in 2008. Since then, she has appeared and starred in over a dozen film and television projects as well as hosting an Emmy Award winning television show.
With the launch of her production company Argentum Entertainment, Bethea has branched out into recently writing and producing, with “New Life” being the first produced project. “New Life” opens with seven-year-old Benjamin Morton’s life changed forever the day he met the little girl next door. Ava was and always would be the girl of his dreams. What began as a childhood friendship grows into a meaningful relationship as the two plan out their lives together. When life takes a turn neither of them expect, their entire future is called into question. Now they must decide what it really means to make the most of life.
The documentary “Burlesque: Heart of the Glitter Tribe” explores the world of burlesque and its growing popularity across the U.S. The film invites audiences to experience this art form up close and personal, seeing its evolution from old world burlesque to “neo-burlesque,” which combines classic striptease with modern dance, comedy and even fire acts.
Behind these performances are dedicated individuals who embody this creative and artistic form of expression. Zora Von Pavonine, one of the stars featured in the film, spends every waking minute perfecting her act and designing one-of-a-kind costumes inspired by designers Alexander McQueen and Jean Paul Gaultier. Through her own admission, her obsession has a taken a toll on her relationship and her pocket book. We also meet Angelique DeVil, a college graduate and a dancer by trade, who credits burlesque for allowing her to express her various “personalities.” Another performer, Isaiah Esquire, nicknamed “Glamazon,” confesses that dance has transformed him from a shy, stuttering teenager who suffered from body image issues to a confident performer, dancer and teacher. Jon Manning directed and produced the documentary.
Featuring a unique improvised style that adds a new edge to the mystery and crime drama genre, “Suspects,” Series 5 makes its DVD debut on Tuesday March 7, from Acorn, an RLJ Entertainment brand. Filmed from an eyewitness perspective with improvised dialogue, this one-of-a-kind procedural delivers an immersive, authentic look at police investigations. Suspects relies on the cast to develop their own dialogue, creating a uniquely realistic tone. This DVD 2-Disc set features six episodes plus a bonus photo gallery (SRP $39.99, AcornOnline.com). “Suspects,” Series 5 made its U.S. premiere last November on the streaming service Acorn TV.
DS Jack Weston (Damien Molony, “Ripper Street”) and DC Charlie Steele (Clare-Hope Ashitey, “Children of Men”) are shocked when their boss, DI Martha Bellamy, is shot dead in her home. DCI Daniel Drummond (James Murray, “Defiance”) joins Jack and Charlie to lead the investigation into Martha’s murder, also bringing in detectives Alisha Brooks (Lenora Crichlow, Being Human) and Gary Roscoe (Perry Fitzpatrick, “Drifters”). The new team soon realizes that Martha’s murder could be connected to a cold case she was investigating and it is possible one of the suspects killed her. The two-disc set includes a photo gallery.
The second season of the critically acclaimed Aussie prison drama “Wentworth” makes its DVD debut on Tuesday March 7 also from Acorn. Fans of the iconic “Prisoner” series, which pushed boundaries over three decades ago and still boasts a loyal following worldwide today, will remember Bea Smith as gutsy and fearless, ruling Wentworth Correctional Centre with an iron fist. Season 2 of “Wentworth” stars Danielle Cormack (“Xena: Warrior Princess”) as Bea Smith. The four-disc set features all 12 episodes of the second season, plus behind-the-scenes featurettes (5 min.), cast and crew interviews (51 min.), and a photo gallery. (SRP $59.99, AcornOnline.com) “Wentworth,” Season 2 originally aired on the Australian network, SoHo, in 2014 and was commissioned for a fifth season last year.
Drastic changes are in store for the women at Wentworth Prison as the hit Australian drama returns. In Season 2, Bea languishes in solitary, plotting revenge for her daughter’s murder, while Franky (Nicole da Silva, “Rush”) runs the prison unopposed. But the arrival of sadistic new governor Joan Ferguson (Pamela Rabe, “The Secret Life of Us”) threatens Franky’s top-dog status. With Franky’s contraband operation in her crosshairs, Ferguson attempts to recruit informants, and the inmates are forced to choose sides. The ensemble cast also features Kate Atkinson (“Jack Irish”), Robbie Magasiva (“The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers”) and Aaron Jeffery (“McLeod’s Daughters”).
“Mickey and the Roadster Racers” makes its Disney DVD debut on Tuesday March 7. Minnie and Daisy join in the racing fun and still finding time to help others. When these racers aren’t zooming to victory, they’re solving problems for anyone in need at their Happy Helpers headquarters. With friendly competition and fun new vehicles, the animated feature is a wild ride that’s turbo-charged with comedy and adventure from start to finish. The voice cast are: Bret Iwan as Mickey Mouse; Russi Taylor as Minnie Mouse; Bill Farmer as Goofy and Pluto; Daniel Ross as Donald Duck; and Tress MacNeille as Daisy Duck.
Bonus features include the episode “Mickey’s Perfecto Day/Running of the Roadsters!” and music videos “Mickey and the Roadster Racers” theme song and “Happy Helpers” theme song.
Front Row Features is giving away a copy of “Care Bears & Cousins: BFFs – Volume 2” on DVD to three lucky readers so that they can teach their children important life lessons through the beloved characters’ exciting journeys in Care-a-Lot. The release features six episodes from the all-new animated series, providing hours of adorable entertainment. To enter, simply email email@example.com by Tuesday March 14 for your chance to win.
Get ready for some high-octane excitement when “Mickey and the Roadster Racers” speeds onto DVD. Join Mickey Mouse and his pals in their transforming roadsters as they race around town—and the world—solving problems for those in need. Featuring four fast-paced episodes, two music videos and an exclusive create-your-own personalized metal license plate, three lucky readers will win a copy of the Disney Junior release from Front Row Features. To enter, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org by Tuesday March 14 for your chance to win.
Explore the ups and downs of life and love in the romantic drama “New Life.” Starring Jonathan Patrick Moore (“Blind Spot”) and Erin Bethea (“Fireproof”) as Benjamin and Ava, the film follows the two characters from the innocence of childhood friendship through adolescent attraction and to a mature adult relationship as their love strengthens and grows. When life takes a turn neither of them expected, their entire future is called into question. Front Row Features is giving away a copy of the Dove-approved romance to three lucky readers on DVD. For your chance to win, simply email email@example.com by Tuesday March 14. Good luck!