bad words is a comedy about a 40-year-old man who competes in a national spelling bee for children. one of the most horrifying discoveries i've made as i've entered adulthood is that it has become way harder to be made to laugh at anything. like, life just gets less and less funny as you age and most things you see just make you anxious and sad. but bad words is a very funny movie, and my favorite of the year so far. this comes with some deleted material and a feature commentary with director/star jason bateman. feature commentaries are my favorite special feature*. they are one of the three things i look for when deciding if i should buy a blu-ray**. i want to see the film as if in the same room as the filmmakers, who are talking to me during the whole thing. in today's home video market, anything released without a commentary is a tragic waste.
* -- my second favorite special feature is music videos.
** -- the other two things i look for are if i really like the movie and if it costs five dollars.
TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES: THE ULTIMATE VISUAL HISTORY
like a lot of the best comic book creations, the teenage mutant ninja turtles have been interpreted a number of drastically different ways. five volumes of comic books, four television shows, four feature films with one on the way, seven hundred video games, storybooks, musical tours, some radical scratch-and-sniff stickers, and the single greatest action figure line in the history of manmade toys. each iteration unique in its vision of the turtles (and invariably a reflection of the decade in which it was produced). you could easily do a whole book on each individual thing, so i'm sure this ultimate visual history is a fascinating voyage across three decades of mutant action and pizza parties, crammed into a beggarly 192 pages.
there is another movie out this weekend about apes that is supposed to be very good, but boyhood is the more remarkable achievement. written & directed by richard linklater, it is the story of a boy named mason growing up from 1st to 12th grade. but rather than cast several different boys to represent mason at different ages, they cast one boy in 2002 and shot the movie intermittently over the past twelve years. his parents are played by ethan hawke and patricia arquette, so you can watch them age 12 years in one movie as well. and i was just wanting a new movie in 2014 that featured ethan hawke in training day fighting shape, so this is perfect. even if the movie sucked, it would be tremendously interesting to watch, but apparently it's a great movie anyway.
and if you like following the same ethan hawke character over several years under the direction of richard linklater, check out before sunrise (1995), before sunset (2004), and before midnight (2013).