Night of the Demons

January 28, 2014

Video TapeWorm

New, encore and low-price releases on Tuesday, Jan. 29

THIS WEEK’S TWIN PEEKS:

NIGHT OF THE DEMONS

1988; $24.98; R

A nice new Blu-ray pressing of a perennial horror favorite. A group of 10 largely unknown “teens” decide to hold a Halloween party in an abandoned mortuary. Big mistake. Then they hold a séance in front of a haunted mirror. Bigger mistake! From there on it’s a nonstop demon free-for-all packed with great oozy special effects, crappy ’80s music and widespread sex and chaos. Still doesn’t ring a bell? OK, it’s the one where lovely Linnea Quigley slides a lipstick INTO HER NIPPLE! Oh, yeah! That one! One of the best-remembered and most entertaining demon-possession/slasher flicks of the whole decade.

WITCHBOARD

1986; $22.98-$26.98; R

Wild-child Tawny Kitaen (of Whitesnake’s “Here I Go Again” video) wipes her Ouija once too often and whips up a wanton whirlwind with wicked intent. What is this, the Elmer Fudd review? Watch out for that wascally wabbit! Sheesh. Anyway, if you’re careful, you’ll catch some neat cameos and a peek at Tawny’s amazing assets buried in this pedestrian little horror opus that launched a list of ’80s imitators back in the day. There are worse ways to spend an hour and a half. Now on Blu-ray.

•••

A CASE OF YOU

2013; $27.98; UR

A writer (Justin Long) meets his dream girl (Evan Rachel “Yowza!” Wood), who is unimpressed by his patter, so he digs into her social media and uses the information to “be” the man she’s always wanted. Problem is, he really hates that guy and is completely bored by all the things she likes to do. A so-so romcom with attractive, likeable leads and some neat cameos (Vince Vaughn, Sam Rockwell, Brendan Fraser, Busy Philipps, Peter “A Christmas Story” Billingsley, etc.). With Sienna Miller, and Peter Dinklage as Long’s diminutive and kinda-gay sounding board.

ABOUT TIME

2013; $24.98; R

When Domhnall Gleeson (Bill Weasley from “Harry Potter”) learns he can travel in time and alter his own past, he does what every guy would do: Gets damn-hot Rachel McAdams to be his girlfriend. Then he fine-tunes his life via back-and-forth visits through their shared past, usually ending in comic failure or painful success, but through it all, he comes to understand that the perfect life isn’t the absence of sorrow but the presence of family with which to share it. An adult tale of romance, love, tragedy and pain, with Bill Nighy as the dad who teaches our hero the time-travel ropes.

DALLAS BUYERS CLUB

2013; $23.98-$34.98; R

Matthew McConaughey is terrific, as always, in this real-life tale of an ordinary, law-abiding Texan who learns he has HIV and only 30 days to live in 1985. Unable to get proper treatment due to confusion and red tape, he scours the world for the most promising treatments, drugs and supplements, putting him in the crosshairs of the medical establishment, pharmaceutical giants, politicians and law enforcement. He eventually forms a “buyers club” where others can get the products they need to live at a reasonable cost. One of the best movies we’ve ever seen.

JOANIE LOVES CHACHI: COMPLETE SERIES

1982; $25.98-$29.98; UR

This infamous “Happy Days” spin-off followed Chachi Arcola (Scott Baio) and Joanie Cunningham (Erin Moran) as they leave Richie and The Fonz behind for a new life in Chicago. There they form a rock band and make an occasional buck playing at his family’s pasta house. Awash in Goomba family humor, this is better than we remembered; definitely better than the “Happy Days” horrible final season. Worth a nostalgic look.

ROMEO AND JULIET

2013; $17.98-$29.98; PG-13

An approachable and lavish modern-day updating of Shakespeare’s immortal tale, with help from the writer of “Downton Abbey.” Hailee “True Grit” Steinfeld is a nubile, breathtaking force of nature as Juliet, while Douglas “The Pillars of the Earth” Booth portrays Romeo as a hot-blooded, sensitive and brash young man driven more by impulse than good sense. In short: You really want to see these two get it on. Bonk-chicka wow-wowww! The perfect artsy first-date flick.

THE BROKER’S MAN: SERIES 1

1997; $24.98-$39.98; UR

This little-known Limey detective series deserves a wider audience. Kevin Whately (“The English Patient”) stars as Jimmy Griffin, an insurance investigator, former cop and full-time lady’s man whose roving eye and cunning mind makes him a master at rooting out criminals and killers and killer babes alike. As a result, his personal life is in the loo and his professional career nearly wiped out. Admittedly a worn premise, this rises above the old-fashioned way: great scripts, seasoned actors and Whately’s undeniable charisma.

THE TICK: THE COMPLETE SERIES

2001; $9.98; UR

The truly ridiculous live-action series — not to be confused with the truly ridiculous animated one — starring big Patrick “Rules of Engagement” Warburton as the dimwitted and “nigh invulnerable” superhero dipped in blue latex. While this only lasted nine embarrassing episodes, we loved each and every one of them. Our favorite? The one in which his sidekick, Arthur (David Burke of “Chuck,” here dressed as a moth), needs The Tick to get lost so he can romance a girl. “Well, destiny honks the horn of gotta go!” With the great Missy Pile and leggy Liz “CSI” Vassey as Captain Liberty.

THE WHITE QUEEN: SEASON ONE

2014; $39.98; UR

Based on the book series “The Cousins War,” this BBC series (shown here on Starz) dramatizes the true story of three young women, each determined to sit on the English throne regardless of who they have to kill, screw or betray. Rebecca Ferguson is breathtaking as the pale, nubile (future Queen) Elizabeth Woodville, with Amanda Hale as Margaret Beaufort and Faye Marsay as Anne Neville. Lots of nudity, bloodshed, backstabbing (both literal and contrived), sex, dirty deeds, more sex and courtly intrigue make this a crackin’ good yarn. Heck, you might even learn a little history along the way. Recommended.

A more complete listing and free vids at videotapeworm.com.