“Wind River,” “The Glass Castle” and “Cars 3” lead new movies on Blu-ray, DVD and streaming sites this week.
“Wind River” (Lionsgate, 2017, R for violence and language, deleted scenes, featurette, video gallery). When a U.S. Fish and Wildlife agent (Jeremy Renner) finds a body on the Wind River Indian Reservation, a rookie FBI agent (Elizabeth Olsen) recruits him to help her navigate the locals during a touchy investigation. "Wind River" plays like a big-screen “Longmire” episode but benefits from gorgeous winter atmosphere (set in Wyoming but largely filmed in Utah) and strong performances. It’s also nice to see Graham Greene and Tantoo Cardinal in supporting roles.
“The Glass Castle” (Lionsgate, 2017, PG-13, deleted scenes, featurettes). This true story about Jeannette Walls’ unconventional, nomadic and poverty-stricken childhood is adapted from her best-selling memoir. She is well represented by Brie Larson, and Woody Harrelson and Naomi Watts as her parents are convincingly despicable, which, unfortunately, only serves to undermine the film’s resolution.
“Cars 3” (Disney/Pixar, 2017, G, deleted scenes, audio commentary, featurettes, short cartoon: “Lou”). As you would expect from Pixar, the animation here is dazzling and the anthropomorphic vehicles are relatable, but going to the well for a third outing may be one (or two) too many. These days, Pixar, whose original ideas put the company on the map, seems to be spending too much time churning out sequels. Here’s hoping “Coco,” which opens later this month, puts Pixar back on track. Owen Wilson, Chris Cooper, Larry the Cable Guy and Bonnie Hunt lead the large voice cast.
“In This Corner of the World” (Shout!, 2017, PG-13, in Japanese with English subtitles or English-dubbed, featurettes, trailer/TV spots). A gorgeous visual structure is in seeming contrast with this compelling animated feature’s narrative, set in Hiroshima during World War II. The story is told from the viewpoint of a young bride who experiences the difficulties of wartime life — before and after the devastating effects of the atomic bomb blast.
“The Nut Job 2: Nutty By Nature” (Universal, 2017, PG, deleted scene, audio commentary, featurettes). This animated sequel about anthropomorphic creatures in an urban wildlife community is a regrettable entry in the cartoon-feature canon, despite a wide-ranging voice cast that includes Will Arnett, Maya Rudolph, Katherine Heigl and Jackie Chan.
“Atomic Blonde” (Universal, 2017; R for violence, language, sex, nudity; deleted/extended scenes, audio commentary, featurettes).
“Unlocked” (Lionsgate, 2017, R for violence and language, featurette, trailers).
“The Villainess” (Well Go, 2017, not rated/probable R for violence; in Korean with English subtitles or English-dubbed, featurette, trailers). In the tradition of “Kill Bill” and “La Femme Nikita,” these three titles are further examples of violent action films that confuse female empowerment with exploitation.
“Atomic Blonde” has the highest profile here, having been released theatrically during the summer. Coming off her hardscrabble role in “Mad Max: Fury Road,” Charlize Theron strives for franchise cred with a fearless performance as a rough-and-tumble MI6 assassin in 1989 Cold War Berlin. The action scenes are savage in their ferocity, making for a harsh ride. The film also stars James McAvoy and John Goodman.
“Unlocked” stars Noomi Rapace (“Prometheus”) as a disgraced CIA interrogator called back into action in this routine thriller. Rapace is terrific in a role that feels like it was written for a male lead, but the film lets her down, despite support from Orlando Bloom, Toni Collette, John Malkovich and Michael Douglas.
“The Villainess” is about a Korean woman (Kim Ok-bin) trained from childhood to be an assassin. She retires after serving as a sleeper agent for South Korea's version of the CIA but is forced back into service. The film is bolstered by impressive, albeit vicious and violent, action sequences amid a muddled narrative.