On Demand: Mads Mikkelsen gets lost in the sauce in 'Another Round'
Here are some interesting new releases available through digital and cable providers for rental as well as a new title available for streaming this week.
Video on Demand
"Another Round": The official Danish entry for the best international feature film category at the upcoming Academy Awards, this drama reunites director Thomas Vinterberg with lead actor Mads Mikkelsen ("The Hunt"). Mikkelsen stars as Martin, a schoolteacher who has grown bored and complacent about his career and family. He pals around with three other men who also teach at the school and they get the bright idea to conduct an experiment to spike their blood alcohol content to 0.5% all day long at work. It's a curious and not entirely successful way to battle their collective midlife crises. Despite disguising their new habit, it doesn't take long for the plan to unravel and have serious repercussions. There is already talk of an American remake (of course), but foreign film fans should not hesitate to enjoy the original now. (Cable and digital VOD, available on Dec. 18)
"Wild Mountain Thyme": John Patrick Shanley (writer of "Moonstruck") has adapted his own play for this mystifying romantic comedy that feels like it came straight out of a time capsule. In a nutshell, this is the tale of how Tony (Christopher Walken with an outrageously awful Irish accent) decides that his sad-sack son Anthony (Jamie Dornan) isn't fit to take over the family farm, and so he plans to give it away to an American cousin (played by Jon Hamm). And while that is the underlying focus, mostly it's about how neighbor Rosemary (Emily Blunt) has been hopelessly in love with Anthony her whole life. The views of the Irish countryside are intoxicating, and Blunt is so wildly charming, that it is impossible to not find enjoyment, even if large swaths of the storyline leave you scratching your head. This is one of those movies you may initially dismiss and then find yourself unable to turn the channel every time it ends up on cable. (Premium VOD rental)
Also on streaming services
"Ma Rainey's Black Bottom": Based on the play by August Wilson, Viola Davis delivers an unforgettable performance as the "Mother of the Blues." Ma Rainey toured the country and released countless hit singles throughout the 1920s. In 94 blistering minutes, we sit in on a contentious recording session for Ma and her band as she fights with her white manager and producer for respect. Alongside the final onscreen performance from the late Chadwick Boseman, both actors shine in a handsomely shot feature that will introduce a legendary singer to a whole new generation. (Netflix on Dec. 18, 4K Ultra HD available)