Movie News & Reviews

‘Southpaw’ is like blending all ‘Rocky’ films together

“Southpaw”: Jake Gyllenhaal and Rachel McAdams demonstrate the boxing technique known as “clinching.”
“Southpaw”: Jake Gyllenhaal and Rachel McAdams demonstrate the boxing technique known as “clinching.” The Weinstein Company

What’s new for home viewing on video-on-demand and Netflix, Amazon Prime, and other streaming services.


Walt Disney Animation Studios Short Films Collection” presents a dozen mostly recent cartoons, including the inventive “Get a Horse!” with Mickey and Minnie, a pair of Oscar-winning shorts (”Paperman” and “Feast”), and the brand new “Frozen Fever” with the characters from “Frozen,” for all those kids who just can’t let it go. All are family friendly.

Manson Family Vacation,” a road movie about two brothers (Jay Duplass and Linas Phillips) visiting Charles Manson murder sites, debuts as a Netflix exclusive. No rating.

Also new: “The Gunman” with Sean Penn as a retired mercenary under the gun (R) and “August: Osage County” (2013), adapted from the Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Tracy Letts and starring Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts (R).

Amazon Prime Video

Danny Collins” (2014) is a gentle redemption tale with Al Pacino as a rock legend who drops out to reconnect with the adult son (Bobby Cannavale) he’s never met. R for rock star excess.

Tom at the Farm” (2013) is a French-language psychological thriller from Quebecois filmmaker Xavier Dolan. Unrated, mature material.

And for the wee ones: “Curious George: Season 9” offers more humorous life lessons, monkey-style.

Pay-Per-View / Video-On-Demand

Southpaw” rolls all of the “Rocky” movies together with Jake Gyllenhaal as a hot-headed boxer, Rachel McAdams as the wife that grounds him, and Forest Whitaker as the philosophical trainer who rebuilds him after a tragedy knocks him low. R for language and violence. Also on Blu-ray and DVD, and from iTunes, Amazon Prime, Vudu and other VOD services.

Adam Sandler leads a team of old school video gamers protecting the Earth from space invaders in “Pixels.” It’s PG-13 for suggestive humor and available in 3D on some systems.

Also new: the revenge thriller “The Gift” with Jason Bateman and Joel Edgerton (R) and the family drama “Max” about a trained military dog adjusting to stateside life (PG).

Available same day as select theaters nationwide is the R-rated “Nasty Baby” with Kristen Wiig. R.


The Canadian crime comedy “24 Hour Rental,” about a video store that fronts mob activities, makes its U.S. debut as a Hulu exclusive. With adult language and violence. 13 episodes.


The documentary “How to Dance in Ohio” observes a group of developmentally challenged teenagers preparing for their first prom.

Jason Bateman uses a loophole to compete against schoolkids in the national spelling bee in the R-rated comedy “Bad Words” (2013).

Debuting on Halloween night are the horror films “The Purge: Anarchy” and “The Pyramid,” both rated R.

Sean Axmaker is a Seattle film critic and writer. His reviews of streaming movies and TV can be found at