On Wednesdays, titles from Jet's Horror and Sci-Fi/Fantasy section rent for $1 each.  This week's spotlight is on Joe Dante's comedic monster film, "Gremlins 2: The New Batch" (1990).

If you liked the original "Gremlins," and if you ever considered yourself a fan of the sci-fi or horror genres, "The New Batch" is for you.  Featuring Zack Galligan, Phoebe Cates, and other members of the original cast (not Corey Feldman, unfortunately), plus cameos and smaller roles from horror personalities such as Robert Prosky ("Grandpa Fred" from "The Munsters") and Christopher Lee, and nods to dozens of horror classics, most of the second Gremlins movie is, like the first, sheer mayhem, and it's completely packed with over-the-top excesses that scratch every itch.

The plot revolves around Billy (Galligan) and Kate (Cates), who've moved to the city and are struggling to get by with jobs they've taken in a state-of-the-art skyscraper office center.  Gizmo, meanwhile, has made his way from the curiosities shop to a genetics research lab -- in the same building.  It doesn't take long before some water gets splashed, some Mogwai offspring eat after midnight, and the building operators have to come up with a way to shield the city from a Gremlin invasion.  "Gremlins 2" is chaotic, hilarious, and well worth the price of admission.

The soft serve machine will be down for cleaning until about 12 PM.
And now, Jet Video presents the Overlooked New Release Report, your source for leads on mediocre-looking movies that really aren't half-bad.  This week's spotlight is on "Deep Dark Canyon," which was released a few months ago -- and it's not half-bad (despite its IMDB rating of 5.0/10, which would seem to indicate that it is exactly half-bad).

Here's the plot: Two teenage brothers (Spencer Treat Clark and Nick Eversman) go on a hunting trip in their rural California hometown to celebrate a birthday.  While chasing a buck, one of them ends up shooting and killing the town mayor, Dick Cavanaugh, whose rather sprawling family dominates local politics and business.  The boys' father (Ted "It Rubs the Lotion on Its Skin" Levine) is the chief of police, but wouldn't you know it, the entire rest of the county justice system is run by Cavanaughs, and what should be a juvenile case of manslaughter is about to be tried as an adult case of murder. ("We're gonna treat this as a family matter," say the Cavanaughs.)  Once in receipt of this information, the free brother decides to spring his captive kin and try to high-tail it to Canada as fugitives with the entire Cavanaugh clan in pursuit.  Do they make it, and what other secrets emerge along the way?  Watch and see!

Bottom line: this was an entertaining action-drama pic that, despite its "R" rating, is suitable for reasonably mature teens (language and violence were the only complaints of the MPAA, and they were reasonably light and appropriate in the context IMO).  If you're looking for a fairly intense and outdoorsy thriller that you can watch with your high schooler, this is a decent pick.  Don't expect too many major new insights into the human condition while you're watching it, but 5.0 is definitely an underrating.

A few of the new releases may be back-ordered until later in the week.

New Releases:
Archer, Season 3
Assault on Wall Street
Banshee (TV Series)
Between Us
Black Rock
Filly Brown
Flying Lessons
G. I. Joe: Retaliation
Meet the Small Potatoes
Under the Bed

New to Jet:
The Bear
The Englishmen Who Went Up a Hill But Came Down a Mountain
The Doors
Ernest Scared Stupid
Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex*
Fahrenheit 451
The Heavenly Kid
Hollywood Shuffle
Honkytonk Man
Intolerable Cruelty
Life and Death
Luther, Season 1
The Mists of Avalon
Quest for Camelot
Scooby-Doo! Laff-A-Lympics
The Swan Princess 3
Transformers, Season 1

Saturdays at Jet Video, titles from our Action and Suspense sections rent for $1 each.  This week's spotlight is on David Lynch's 1985 surreal masterpiece, "Blue Velvet."

What would you do if, while home on a college vacation, you found a severed ear in a field?  Would you, to find its origin, embark on a terrifying journey of discovery through a world of crime and depravity that lurked right beneath the idyllic surface of your community?  If so, you'd have a lot in common with Jeffrey Beaumont (Kyle Maclachlan), the protagonist of "Blue Velvet."

"Blue Velvet" is one of Lynch's best and the direct predecessor of his and Mark Frost's later network television series, "Twin Peaks" (which is also available at Jet).  Dennis Hopper puts in a landmark performance as the maniacal, drug-huffing Frank Booth, and Isabella Rossellini shines as the brutally vulnerable lounge singer, Dorothy Vallens.  Through romance, perversity, and violence, the characters are transformed and liberated, and Lumberton's secrets come to light -- to those who have sought them.  A phenomenal film, a complete must-see!

Fridays at Jet Video, titles from our Foreign section rent for $1 each.  This week's spotlight is on 2003's "Good Bye Lenin," a German-language comedy.

The humor of "...Lenin," directed by Wolfgang Becker, revolves around the relationship between a young German man named Alex and his mother, Christiane, a devout member of the Socialist Party of East Germany, who fell into a coma in 1989, prior to the fall of the Berlin Wall.  Some time later, after the reunification of Germany has begun, Christiane awakens, but because her of fragile health, her doctors have recommended that she be sheltered from any surprises.  Alex decides that the best thing in this case is to prevent her from realizing that East Germany has fallen, and he goes to hilarious lengths to keep up the illusion that her beloved Party still exists.  Funny, and an interesting period piece.  Recommended!

Thursdays at Jet Video, titles from our Documentary/Special Interest section rent for just $1 each.  This week's spotlight is on "Directed by John Ford" (1971).

Directed by Peter Bagdanovich and narrated by Orson Welles, this documentary is a tribute to the cinematic works of John Ford (born John Martin Feeney in Cumberland County's own Cape Elizabeth in 1894), which numbered well over one hundred and included such greats as "The Grapes of Wrath" (1940) and "The Searchers" (1956).  Ford was a trailblazer in the realm of movie-making, and the re-edited, 2006 version of "Directed...," which features interviews with film giants such as Clint Eastwood, Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg, and Katharine Hepburn, is well work a viewing (especially for $1).

Wednesdays at Jet Video, all Horror and Sci-Fi/Fantasy titles rent for $1 each.  This week's spotlight is on "Near Dark" (1987), a grungy vampire flick from our Horror section that also marked the second major effort from "Zero Dark Thirty" director/producer Kathryn Bigelow.

Starring Lance Henrikson, Bill Paxton, Adrian Pasdar, and Jenny Wright, "Near Dark" tells the story of a young, Midwestern man named Caleb Colton (Pasdar) who flirts one night with a seductive stranger named Mae (Wright) who's shown up outside his local watering hole -- looking for a bite.  Rather than being killed during their encounter, Caleb is afflicted with Mae's vampirism and soon finds himself dragged into the rough-and-tumble, wild-west world of Mae's nomadic clan, headed by patriarch Jesse Hooker (Henrikson).  Like little Eli in 2008's "Let the Right One In,"  the vamps of "Near Dark" are uncouth and unkempt -- no counts or countesses here -- and while Caleb needs their protection as he struggles to cope with his new "biological urges," he also desperately seeks salvation and a return to his pre-vampiric life.  Think "The Lost Boys" meets "Sons of Anarchy" with an extra helping of cowboy sensibilities and get ready for a rootin', tootin', blood-soaked showdown at dawn!

Tuesdays at Jet, movies from our Musicals category are only $1 each.  Here's a spotlight on 2007's Beatles-infused "Across the Universe" (2007) (clips at link).