A 50-50 set of releases offered some vintage TV, a few genre misfires and one all-star action/comedy with more charm than muscle.
“The Monuments Men” — Towards the end of World War II, a special squad is formed to go behind enemy lines and rescue stolen artworks before they are destroyed. This is a mostly true story and it is well told. The cast is led by George Clooney, who receives ample support from John Goodman, Matt Damon, Jean Dujardin and Bill Murray. Part “Great Escape” and part “Mission Impossible.”
“Mischief Night” — A babysitter tangles with a masked killer in this horror flick that takes place on the night before Halloween. Traditionally, it is a night of minor pranks, but here you get a killer in a mask using the evening for gruesome effect. They try a novel twist here with the killer and potential victim developing feelings for each other, but it just doesn’t hold together. Featuring Malcolm McDowell in another of his many direct-to-video cameo roles.
“3 Days to a Kill” — Kevin Costner stars as a CIA agent who is terminally ill and estranged from his wife and teenage daughter. The agency offers him a potential cure if he will track a dangerous terrorist. The trick is that he has offered to watch his daughter that weekend. This tries to be a comedy, an action film, and a drama. It fails on all levels.
“Doctor Who: The Enemy of the World” — Another restored adventure from the 1960s finds the second doctor in hot water, when he lands the Tardis in 21rst century Australia. Turns out the future is being menaced by a mad dictator named Salamander. The problem is he’s a dead ringer for the Time Lord. Patrick Troughton has a field day playing the good Doctor as well as the evil doppelganger.