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DVD Shopping Bag: Attack the Block Blu-ray

Old School Fun

By Robert T. Trate     October 25, 2011

 

There have been numerous comparisons from Gremlins to Goonies about Attack the Block. Yes, it does star a bunch of creepy crawly otherworldly monsters. It is also packed with a bunch of kids just trying to survive the night. Critics always like to make comparisons so I’ll make one of my own. First and foremost I loved this film. It was riddled with complex situations and dilemmas for all the characters involved. Make no mistake; these kids aren’t good guys or even heroes. This isn’t Chunk, Mikey, Mouth, or Data. No, these kids are petty criminals and thieves on the road to worse things. Where this film takes its key notes from is M. Night Shyamalan's 2002 film Signs.
 
Shyamalan's film gave us the unique perspective of a family dealing with an alien invasion intermixed with their own problems. Director and Writer Joe Cornish does the very same thing in Attack the Block, only he gives us a street gang and their victim mixed into the alien invasion. This creates a situation and dilemma of trust. How can Sam (Jodie Whittaker) trust these kids with her life after they just robbed her? The situation creates an incredible drama and really puts the audience on edge. Not only do we have to worry about these creatures, but can Sam survive the kids? This isn’t the only issue we have as an audience. Can we take the kid’s side? Can we root for hooligans? The journey that is Attack the Block is one that finally gives us some science fiction worth talking about. And damn it, it has been while since we have had that.
 
After I saw this film I had a ton of questions. How did they do this and how did they do that? It was great to not have a film completely spoiled by an “HBO First Look” or an “A&E Behind the Secrets of…” well, you know. Finally, there was the need and desire to get the skinny on how Attack the Block was made. Sony Pictures supplied a perfect combination of a documentary about the film, a creature feature, commentaries, and profiles of the gang members. It was refreshing to enjoy a movie on different levels and want to jump into the special features. More often than not “special features” are as prepackaged as the action figures and happy meals that accompany any blockbuster.
 
 “Behind the Block” is just over an hour long and packed with interviews, auditions, and on set problems making it a great look at the film. Joe Cornish is almost your host as he walks you through the different shooting days. At one point Cornish even Googles his own movie to find out the script is now online. “Creature Feature” had all the goodies I wanted. While watching Attack the Block, I marveled how real the aliens felt; like a real presence in the film. In short, they didn’t look like CGI crap a la the new Thing. Yet with each scene and each close up, I wondered how they did the teeth and their “blacker than black” appearance. Spoilers abound here in “Creature Feature” and a tip of hat to Cornish for keeping it real.
 
While watching Attack the Block again I started to think about watching films like Goonies and Gremlins when I was kid. I never saw either in the theater, but watched them over and over again on cable and VHS. How will kids discover a film like this today? A crazy guy’s movie blog? An older brother who puts in an R rated movie one night? Attack the Block was old school fun that was much like the movies the other critics described. Thankfully, it was more than just some zany comedy about little green men or going after buried treasure. It had some real issues to discuss long after the credits ended.
 
And now I pass Attack the Block to you.
 
Top 5 Picks of the Week:
 
1. Island of Lost Souls (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray]
2. Attack the Block [Blu-ray]
3. Jurassic Park Ultimate Trilogy (Blu-ray + Digital Copy)
4. The Conversation [Blu-ray]
5. Captain America: The First Avenger (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo + Digital Copy)
 
ACTION / ADVENTURE / KUNG FU/ THRILLERS / WESTERNS
 
3 Musketeers Starring Heather Hemmons, Alan Rachins, Xin and David Chokachi
 
City of Life and Death: 2 Disc Special Edition [Blu-ray] Starring Hideo Nakaizumi, Ye Liu and Yuanyuan Gao
 
City of Life and Death: 2-Disc Special Edition
 
The Conversation [Blu-ray] Starring Gene Hackman and Harrison Ford
 
Fire of Conscience Starring Leon Lai, Richie Ren, Michelle Ye and Baoquiang Wang
Into The Badlands Starring Bruce Dern, Mariel Hemingway, Helen Hunt
 
Lust For Vengeance (10th Anniversary Explicit Version)
 
Roger Corman's Cult Classic's Lethal Ladies Collection (Firecracker, TNT Jackson, Too Hot To Handle) Starring Jeannie Bell, Jillian Kesner and Cheri Caffaro
Shaolin Collector's Edition [Blu-ray] Starring Andy Lau, Jackie Chan, Nicholas Tse and Bingbing Fan
 
Shaolin (Bluray + DVD Combo) [Blu-ray] Starring Andy Lau, Jackie Chan, Nicholas Tse and Bingbing Fan
 
ANIME
 
19 Doors
 
Himawari: Season 1 Collection
 
Moon Phase: The Complete Collection (S.A.V.E.) Starring Jason Liebrecht, Monica Rial and Luci Christian
 
Naruto Shippuden the Movie: Bonds
 
Naruto Shippuden the Movie: Bonds [Blu-ray]
 
Witchblade: Box Set (Classic) [Blu-ray] Starring Monica Rial, Caitlin Glass and Clarine Har
 
Witchblade: Box Set (Classic)
 
CARTOONS
 
Marvel The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, Volume Three
 
Marvel The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, Volume Four
Robot Chicken: Season Five
Robot Chicken: Season Five [Blu-ray]
 
Tom & Jerry Golden Collection: Volume One [Blu-ray] Starring Lillian Randolph
 
Winnie the Pooh (Three-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo + Digital Copy)
 
Winnie The Pooh
Winnie The Pooh Movie (Two-Disc Blu-ray / DVD Combo in DVD Packaging)
 
Young Justice: Volume Two
 
COMEDY AND LOVE Mania Style
 
The Best of the Three Stooges Starring Moe Howard, Larry Fine, Shemp Howard and Curly Joe deRita
 
Laurel & Hardy: The Essential Collection Starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Dick Van Dyke and Jerry Lewis
 
People Vs George Lucas Starring John Barger and Roger Ebert
 
Criterion Collection
 
Dazed and Confused (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] Starring Jason London, Rory Cochrane, Wiley Wiggins
 
Dazed and Confused (The Criterion Collection)
 
Identification of a Woman (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] Starring Tomas Milian, Daniela Silverio, Christine Boisson
 
Identification of a Woman (Criterion Collection)
Island of Lost Souls (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] Starring Charles Laughton, Richard Arlen, Leila Hyams
 
Island of Lost Souls (Criterion Collection)
 
HORROR
 
A Serbian Film [Blu-ray] Starring Srdjan Todorovic, Sergej Trifunovic and Jelena Gavrilovic
 
Atrocious Starring Rafael Amaya, Jose Masegosa, Chus Pereiro
 
A Serbian Film
 
Animal Attack Two Pack (Maneaters Are Loose/ Shark Kill) Starring Dabney Coleman, Steve Forest, Harry Morgan Tom Skerrit
 
Booley Starring Tom Detrik, Raine Brown, Carmela Hayslett
 
The Countess Starring William Hurt, Julie Delpy
Cut Starring Zach Galligan and Simon Phillips
 
Darker Reality
 
Faces in the Crowd (Blu-Ray) Starring Milla Jovovich, Julian McMahon and David Atrakchi
 
Faces in the Crowd (DVD/Blu-Ray/Digital Copy)
 
Faces in the Crowd (Free Digital Copy)
 
The Green Monster Starring Edward X. Young, Colleen Cohan, Bethany Taylor
 
Hellweek: Double Disc Grindhouse Bootleg Edition Starring Karen Fox, Rob Jaeger Robyn Griggs
 
Hidden Starring Ellen Hinch, Dakeeta Planty, Michael Lesley
 
Hide Starring James C. Burns, Lisa Younger, Chrissy Anderson
 
Maria's B-Movie Mayhem-Voodoo Dolls / Madonna
 
Mothman Starring Jewel Staite and Susie Abromeit
 
Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale (Blu-Ray + DVD) Starring Jorma Tommila, Peeter Jakobi and Onni Tommila
 
Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale
 
Renfield The Undead Starring Cory Hart, Denise Williamson and Roxy Vandiver Julin
 
The Resurrection Game (10th Anniversary Edition) Starring Debbie Rochan, Jasi Cotton Lanier, Ray Yeo, Bill Homan, Francis Veltri, Kristen Pfeifer, Ted Hoover Amy Lynn Best
Slaughter Claus Starring David Hawkins and Nelson Oliver
 
Unhappy Birthday Starring David Paisley, Christina De Vallee and Jill Riddiford
 
Wrong Turn 4: Bloody Beginnings [Blu-ray] Starring Terra Vnesa and Kaitlyn Wong
Wrong Turn 4: Bloody Beginnings
 
SCIENCE FICTION / FANTASY
 
Attack the Block [Blu-ray] Starring John Boyega, Jodie Whittaker, Alex Esmail and Nick Frost
 
Attack the Block
Captain America: The First Avenger (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo + Digital Copy) Starring Chris Evans, Hugo Weaving, Samuel L. Jackson
 
Captain America: The First Avenger
 
Captain America: The First Avenger (Three-Disc Combo: Blu-ray 3D / Blu-ray / DVD / Digital Copy)
 
Destroy All Monsters [Blu-ray]
 
Jurassic Park Ultimate Trilogy (Blu-ray + Digital Copy) Starring Richard Attenborough, Sam Neill, Bob Peck and Jeff Goldblum
 
Jurassic Park Ultimate Trilogy (+ Digital Copy)
 
TV LAND
Barney Miller: The Complete Series Starring Hal Linden, Max Gail, Ron Glass and Steve Landesberg
Dennis The Menace: Season Three Starring Jay North, Herbert Anderson and Gloria Henry
 
Luther: Season 2 Starring Warren Brown, Idris Elba, Paul McGann and Dermot Crowley
 
The Men from Shiloh - The Final Season from The Virginian - Special Embossed Tin Packaging! Starring James Drury, Doug McClure, Stewart Granger and John McLiam
 
Tales of Wells Fargo - The Complete First & Second Seasons - Special Embossed Collectable Tin Starring Dale Robertson, Chuck Connors, Lee Van Cleef
 
The Virginian: Fifth Season Complete Starring James Drury, Doug McClure, Charles Bickford and Sara Lane
 
Wagon Train - The Complete Season Four - Embossed Collectible Metallic Tin! Starring Ward Bond, Robert Horton, Frank McGrath and Terry Wilson
 
BOX SETS
 
Jurassic Park Ultimate Trilogy Gift Set (Blu-ray + Digital Copy)
 
Robert Trate writes two weekly columns for Mania the DVD Shopping Bag and the Toy Maniac. Follow Robert on Twitter for his for Geek ramblings, Cosplay photos and film criticisms.
 

COMMENTS AND RESPONSES

Showing items 1 - 6 of 6
1 
ultrazilla2000 10/25/2011 1:59:11 AM

Hmm...I thought the CGI in The Thing was very well done, while Attack The Block's seemed cheap.  Not that I care as I enjoyed both movies...

goldeneyez 10/25/2011 7:43:20 AM

I saw Attack the Block in theaters this summer.  I whole heartedly agree that it was REALLY good.  There characters had a lot of layers, and there was more to the story than just a mindless alien attack.

I think some of my favorite moments in the film were with the two little kids, Mayhem and Probs.

I also read an interview with the kid who plays Moses in the film comparing his character to the character Michael on the Wire.  If you've seen both this movie and the Wire you can easily see this.

This was one of the better genre movies of 2011 and I highly recommend it as well.  There was a lot of social commentary without being overly preachy.  I agree the kids in the movie were not saints by any means, but it does shed light on how some of the kids end up where they do.

 

peak37pt 10/25/2011 8:43:15 AM

 Attack the Block, Rare Exports, and The Troll Hunter have fullfilled my creature feature fantasies for a VERY long time. 

Also, The Conversation re-release is awesome. Classic film!

Hobbs 10/25/2011 9:38:17 AM

Attack the block headlines over Captain America?  At first I thought it was a slow week for DVD releases.  Heck even Jurasic Park blu ray comes out.

themovielord 10/25/2011 12:59:53 PM

Hobbs, Paramount never sent me Captain America to review. Guess they figured they didn't need coverage.

InnerSanctum 10/25/2011 1:31:57 PM

 I really enjoyed Troll Hunter.  Looking forward to catching Attack the Block.  

If you haven't seen it yet, and I'm not sure when it is coming on DVD, but Tucker and Dale vs. Evil was a lot of fun.  

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