DVD Playhouse--Dec. 2012/Jan. 2013

By Allen Gardner

Killer Joe (Lionsgate) William Friedkin’s film of Tracy Letts’ off-Broadway hit about a family of Texas trailer park cretins (Emile Hirsch, Juno Temple, Thomas Haden Church, Gina Gershon) who hire a cop-cum-hitman (Matthew McConaughey) to take out their troublesome mother, then foolishly cross him, is a stinging satire, given double-barreled audacity by Friedkin’s sure, and fearless, directorial hand. Earning its Nc-17 rating in spades, “Killer Joe” reminds us that daring, frank material like this is why movies exist in the first place. McConaughey gives the performance of his career, hopefully redefined after this. Also available on Blu-ray disc. Bonuses: Featurettes; Commentary by Friendkin; Trailer. Widescreen. Dolby and DTS-hd 5.1 surround.

The Dark Knight Rises (Warner Bros.) Christopher Nolan’s coda to his “Batman” trilogy finds Christian Bale returning as a brooding Bruce Wayne/Caped Crusader, this time faced with a hulking villain (Tom Hardy) with respiratory
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