Black Dog Video Newsletter January 26 – February 1st, “Near Death Edition”


Stay warm, sick monkey.

Just finally starting to get over this nasty-ass flu virus bacterial infection garbage illness. I’ve been sick as a monkey for over a week now. It’s been terrible – I felt as if my head were full of cement and snapping turtles and my body was riddled with scratchy insulation mixed with electric eels and swamp juice. Fever, itchy skin, sore teeth and hair, insomnia, mouth lesions, dizziness, uncontrollable swearing all manifested themselves in my body over the last week. I self-diagnosed either Ebola, Haunta Virus or the Black Death. Swanson, my 10 year-old cheerfully chimed in with “Maybe it’s cancer, Dad?!” I finally got in to see the doctor and got on some antibiotics so in a few days I should be right as rain. It’s a wonder we’re all not dead.

New Releases


Burnt – Bradley Cooper is a cooking guy who self destructs via drugs and some questionable behaviour. But just when you thinks he’s done like dinner, he bounces back and opens a new restaurant in London towne. For people who like to eat and look at nice food.


Difret – Heavy duty drama about a young girl living in Ethiopia who suffers in an arranged marriage. She ends up shooting her would-be husband and must stand to defend herself. Just because something is a tradition doesn’t mean it should still exist.


Downton Abbey S 6 – More hoity-toity shenanigans in the huge mansion. I think that this may be the last season. That’ll do, Downton Abbey, that’ll do.


Effie Gray – Oh the British scandals keep on coming. Love triangle between a Victorian art critic, the teenage Effie and a painter with three names. Scandal and hushed whispers, I presume, ensue.


Freeheld – Julianne Moore is dying once again. This time she’s fighting the system with her partner, Ellen Page, to secure benefits before she kicks off. Steve Carrell and Michael Shannon are along for the good times.


Goosebumps – Fine frightening family fare finds famed author RL Stine’s imaginary monsters escaping from somewhere to terrorize a small town. Much hijinks ensue.


Heist – Dad can’t afford his daughter’s medical treatment so he does what every good dad would do, he robs a casino. Things don’t go as planeed, because they never do, and he’s then forced to hijack a bus. Another straight to video flick starring good old Robert DeNiro.


Hyena Road – Canadian war drama from Paul Gross about the ups and downs (mostly downs, I assume) of the war in Afghanistan.


Meet the Patels – Funny doc about a 30-year-old Indian-American fella whose family are keen on helping him find a bride in the traditional Indian way. Much hilarity, I presume, ensues.


The Prophet – Animated tale of exiled poet and artist Mustafa as he takes a perilous journey home with his housekeeper and her daughter. Looks pretty amazing.


Last Witch Hunter – Noted thespian Vin Diesel is the title witchunter who must hunt some nasty witches before they can unleashing their witching powers. Not a documentary.


Learning to Drive – Ben Kingsley teaches Patricia Clarkson how to drive and to navigate life’s hills and curves. And how to properly eat a popsicle.


Luther S 4 – Hunky dreamy Idris Elba is the famed surly detective who goes about detecting crimes in old London towne. Still haven’t seen this show. Heard nothing but swell things.


Truth – Robert Redford is Dan Rather in this dramatic drama about CBS news and their 2004 investigation into George Bush’s military service, or lack thereof, and how it cost Dan and his producer Marla Maples, their careers.


Wannabe – Aspiring mob fella wants to rise in the ranks of the mobby world so he attempts to fix the trial of John Gotti to win some brownie points. I wonder if everything goes as planned?

Coming Soon

Unreal S 1
Brilliant Young Mind
Bridge of Spies
Our Brand is Crisis
Rock the Kasbah
99 Homes

Recently Viewed and Recommended

The Walk
Bone Tomahawk
Leftovers S1
Diary of a Teenage Girl
My Internship in Canada

We have a special guest star reviewer this week! Aaron, who rents over yonder at Cambie Street want to tell you about a nice movie that he liked…

I saw My Internship in Canada at a film festival. It’s a hilarious comedy, but the movie has almost nothing to do with declaring war or the balance in parliament etc. Those things just set the stage.

A political intern from Haiti is assigned to a Quebec MP, and they decide to consult their constituents about whether to vote for war. But local issues and personalities are much more important. Roads are blocked and unblocked because of pay scales, meetings are stacked and unstacked. All sorts of personalities grope for what they want and need. The competing interests range from First Nations to loggers to truckers to mayors of small towns. Everything is presented very low-key, and the audience was laughing itself silly by the end.

Altogether, the film was a great surprise and a real gem.

Cool beans. See ya next week.

Copyright © 2016 Black Dog Video, All rights reserved.

Black Dog Newsletter January 19 to 25 “One More for the Road Edition!”


Just a friendly heads up notification ~ we only have one hoodie left at each location for you to adorn your beautiful body with. Only $29.99. Be the coolest kid in school. First come first serve. Lots of T-shirts are still up for grabs. See you soon!

New Releases


Deathgasm – Awesome horror-comedy finds two heavy metal dudes fighting an ancient evil known as Aeloth the Blind One who wants to rip apart the very fabric of reality. Whatever that is. Along the way they have to deal with family members, friends and neighbours who have been possessed and have turned into psychotic murderers. Includes not one, but two deaths by giant dildo. Good fun!


Diary of a Teenage Girl – Great coming of age drama/comedy finds a teenage girl having an affair with her mom’s boyfriend. Yikes! This one showed up on a lot of best of the year lists. So there’s that.


Dragon Blade – Strange-looking (why the long faces, everyone?) historical epic finds Oscar-winner Adrian Brody (whatever happened to that guy?) and his big army (not an euphemism for anything) attempting to take over the Silk Road in China. Jackie Chan and, for some reason, John Cusack stand in his way. You read all of that right.


Experimenter – Fine drama about Stanley Milgard (Peter Sarsgaard – kinda rhymes) who was that dude who designed the experiment in which one person was to administer an electric shock to another poor bastard in a different room. The experiment was to see if folks would continue to shock the monkey if told to do so. Make a good double bill with Stanford Prison Experiment.


Everest – Bunch of manly men – The Gyllenhaal, Brolin, Clarke, Hawkes and others – decide to climb Mt. Everest for some stupid reason. It doesn’t go well. Based on true events. I’ve never seen the appeal in doing such a crazy thing. But then I’m afraid of everything.


The Intern – Lame-looking comedy finds Robert DeNiro (I want the Taxi Driver Robert DeNiro back, not this lame, milquetoast, awe-shucks Robert DeNiro) going to work as a senior (no kidding) intern for an online fashion start-up headed by Anne Hathaway and all of her perfect teeth. Do you think that the old dog teaches the youngin’ a trick or two? Sigh.


My Internship in Canada – Canadian comedy from the great province of Quebec finds an MP who, for some reason, holds the deciding vote on whether or not Canada will go to war. With whom, I’m not too sure. I hope it’s Iceland. We’d kick their asses!


The Look of Silence – Another excellent doc (Oscar nominated!) from that guy who made Act of Killing. This is kinda like an extension of that film as it follows an optometrist in Indonesia who tracks down and confronts the maniacs who murdered his brother. A very dangerous thing to do as these awful people are still in power. I spent 2 months in Indonesia last year and it’s such a lovely country and the people so nice it’s hard to imagine the horrors that befell this place all those years ago and that the pricks who did the killing still have never been prosecuted.


Stanford Prison Experiment – Drama thriller about that notorious experiment back in the day where some volunteers were divided up into “guards” and “cons” to see what would happen. I guess the guards, drunk and insane with power didn’t treat the cons all that well. Go figure. Make a good double bill with Experimenter.


Stonewall – Lame (from what I’ve heard and read and heard) retelling of the famous Stonewall incident in 1969 (cops busted a gay club because they were gay and the cops were dicks) and how that lead to the rise of Gay Rights across the land. Directed, for some reason, by Roland Emmerich (Day After Tomorrow).


Straight Outta Compton – Excellent drama-rama chronicling (get it, chronic?) the rise of N.W.A, described as “The most dangerous band in the world”. Guess they never heard of Menudo.


This Changes Everything – Great, important doc follows the amazing Naomi Klein as she tries to save the world from climate change which, of course, will kill us all. Come on people, get out of your cars and off your tanning beds! Let’s save the world! At Cambie, soon to Commercial – my boneheaded distributor sent me something called Arthur and Merlin in place of these. I guess they’re kind of similar.

Coming Soon!

Luther Season 4
Finders Keepers
Northern Soul
Unreal Season 1
Bridge of Spies
Samurai Cop 2

Recently Viewed and Recommended!

Straight Outta Compton
Look of Silence
Bone Tomahawk
Leftovers S1
The Visit
Diary of a Teenage Girl
The Martian
Mr. Robot S1

For more swell recommendations click here. See y’all next week! Hugs and kisses.

Copyright © 2016 Black Dog Video, All rights reserved.

Black Dog Video Newsletter January 11 – 17 “Sad Days Indeed Edition”


The Man Who Fell to Earth.

One of the worst things about getting older (I have a laundry list of things I hate about getting older) is people are always dying. Friends, co-workers, neighbours, neighbour’s dogs and people you don’t know on a personal basis but that you grew up with. Read more…

We will be closing early this coming Sunday (17th) for a well-deserved staff party. Get in before 9pm to get what you need!

New Releases


Beeba Boys – Locally shot gangster epic, directed by Deepa Mehta, tells the gangster tale of a guy who wants to take on the local, and I do mean local as it’s also set in Vancouver, crime kingpin and get all of his gangster related riches.


Hotel Transylvania 2 – More monster hijinks as Dracula and his pals go about their monster business.


Irrational Man – Last year’s Woody Allen film find a neurotic (no!) and tormented philosophy professor finding the will to live after he commits some sort of existential act. I’m not even sure what that means. Anyways, I think it’s always a good thing to have a new Woody Allen film. Life is short. Not as short as Woody Allen, but still short.


Life – Sparkly vampire (Robert Pattinson) who works as a photographer for Life magazine is assigned to take some shots of an up-and-coming actor who goes by the name of James Dean. Sounds intriguing (no actual vampires appear in this film). Directed by Anton Corbijn (Control).


The Martian – MATT DAMON is stranded on Mars and has to eat his own poop. Or something like that. For some reason this won best comedy at this years Golden Globes. Good stuff.


Mr. Robot S1 – Excellent, weird TV series (also a Glorbin Glob winner) about a junkie computer nerd/genius who stumbles on a secret anarchist society bent on taking down the man! Pretty fun series that you should be watching.


Sherlock: The Abominable Bride – The famed detectives look to solve the case of The Abominable Bride! Whatever that is. Yeti Bride? Why would anyone marry someone who is abominable? Or a Yeti?


Sinister 2 – More sinister doings are afoot when a young family with twins (always a bad sign) move into a house that’s been marked by death. That’s got to wreak havoc with the property values.

Coming Soon

This Changes Everything
Diary of a Teenage Girl
Dragon Blade
The Intern
Learning to Drive
Stanford Prison Experiment
Straight Outta Compton

Recently Viewed and Recommended

Mr. Robot S1
The Martian
The Visit
Mississippi Grind
The Seven-Five
Utopia S1

And without any more adieu, here’e the rest of the staff’s picks for the best of what cinema had to offer for the year known as 2015…


Ex Machina
It Follows
The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness
A Master Builder
Shaun the Sheep
The Tale of the Princess Kaguya
What We Do in the Shadows




– The Lobster
– Mad Max: Fury Road
– Ex Machina
– Slow West
– Magic Mike XXL
– Crumbs
– It Follows
– Star Wars: TFA

That’s it for this week folks. Enjoy yourselves. Stay war, Stay safe. Keep watching.

Copyright © 2016 Black Dog Video, All rights reserved.

Goodbye, Mr. Bowie.

One of the worst things about getting older (I have a laundry list of things I hate about getting older) is people are always dying. Friends, co-workers, neighbours, neighbour’s dogs and people you don’t know on a personal basis but that you grew up with. They were always there. There was some sort of comfort in that. Of course I’m talking about the passing of David Bowie. I was never a huge Bowie fan but I liked much of his music and I always thought of him as an interesting, dynamic, cool, classy and brilliant man. His was one of the first music videos I remember seeing. I think it was Ashes to Ashes. I remember it being weird, I didn’t particularly like the song, but I liked him and all of the odd imagery. Funny, I can still picture much of it in my brains. He also managed to write one of my favourite songs of all time – Heroes. Might seem a little cliche but the line “we can be heroes, just for one day” has always stayed with me. I find that line quite inspiring but also profoundly sad. It’s perfect.

Bowie wasn’t just a great, original musician, he had quite a distinguished film career as well. He sought out intelligent, odd and interesting parts such as the freaky alien guy in Man Who Fell to Earth, the freaky vampire in The Hunger, the freaky goblin king in Labyrinth, Nicholas Tesla (bit of a freak) in The Prestige, Andy Warhol (big time freak) in Basquiet and the POW in Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence. All cool. And he could do comedy. Check out this great scene from the Ricky Gervias show Extras. Brilliant.

Somewhere there’s a band, perhaps the weirdest band ever, being assembled – Bowie on lead vocals, Lemmy on bass, John Bradbury from the Specials on drums. Angus Scrimm (the Tall Man from the Phantasm series) can be the manager. I guess we just need a lead guitarist. There’s lots of ageing rockers out there.

I’ll leave you, not with a clip of Mr. Bowie himself, but with a song of his used to great effect (much great Bowie music can be found in many films – one of my favourites was the Portuguese covers in A Life Aquatic. What’s yours?) in one of my favourite films of the last few years, Frances Ha. It just exemplifies the feeling of being young and free and alive. Much joy is to found here. You will be missed, David Bowie. But I’m glad that you were here with us for a while.


Black Dog Newsletter January 4 to 10th “Fleshy Book Edition”


“I’ll Eat Your Soul! But I can’t digest it as I’m just a fake book!”

Fleshy Book Edition?! What on earth is that young fella talking about, you ask yourself. Well let me tell you, we recently bought a pile of DVDs and Blu Rays from a lovely young man and included was a Special Edition of the original Evil Dead flick. The “special” thing about it was it comes ensconced in the Necronomicom – the book made of human flesh – that, when one reads certain passages from it, unleashes a nasty demon into our world! Intrigued? I bet. We have put it up for sale at the Commercial Drive location for a mere $45! Where else can you find such a book made out of humans for such a low price? First come, first served. (Only $1 to touch it’s fleshy grossness!)

It’s my turn to inflict upon you fine people my picks for best and the worst of what 2015 had to offer in the realm of film. Click on this nice button here for the best, and here for the worst. Enjoy responsibly.

New Releases


American Dreamer – Documentary originally made in 1971 lets you to hang out with a young and rebellious Dennis Hopper as he puts together he latest film, The Last Movie and walks around with a large gun.


Ashby – Young guy, wants to know more about growing up, befriends his neighbour and Arby’s mystery-meat sandwich impersonator, Mickey Rourke, who’s also an ex-CIA assassin and who’s also dying. Life lessons (one of which is not too much plastic surgery, please) abound.


Bone Tomahawk – Crazy, hyper-violent western of sorts finds a bunch of manly men – Kurt Russell, Patrick Wilson, Matthew Fox – setting out to rescue some folks who’ve been taken captive by some cave-dwelling cannibals. To me, this film has everything I want in a movie – tough guys, moustaches, horses, and cannibals. Can’t wait to see it (I hear it’s pretty damn good).


Captive – Drug-mom is taken hostage by a judge-murdering fella who’s on the lam. Much drama and soul searching, I presume, ensues. Personally I can’t stand hostage dramas. I don’t know why but I hate them. But don’t let my weird hangups stop you from checking this out.


The Green Inferno – Another Eli Roth flick (Knock Knock) splatters across your TV. Some student activists travel to South America to save the rainforest only to be taken captive by a bunch of forest-dwelling cannibals. I sense a theme in this week’s releases!


The Falling – Is there anything more terrifying in movies than boarding schools? Even without any cannibals around this one sounds pretty intriguing. A girl’s boarding school in 1969 England is the setting for some mysterious happenings as girls start having fainting spells after some sort of tragedy. Stars that girl with the pointy sword from Game of Thrones.


Heaven Knows What – Well reviewed heavy duty drama about the ups and (mostly) downs of a couple of junkies in New York City. Don’t do drugs kids! Stay in school! Don’t eat people!


Memories of the Sword – Fun, stylish Korean flick set in olde tymes where revenging is the order of the day. Aren’t all sword epics about some sort of revenge? I’m OK with that.


Over Your Dead Body – Reality and fiction intertwine as some stage actors take their passions into their bedrooms where things don’t go as one might think they do. Or maybe they do go as one might think they do as this is a Takeshi Mikke (Audition) film.


Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension – I don’t even know what number this is in the series but from what I’ve heard it’s the worst one yet. I used to like these films – the first 3 are pretty damn fine – but it’s like beating a dead horse that’s been sitting in your backyard for most of the summer and then one of your neighbours calls the cops and you get arrested and then upon release you seek out revenge on that neighbour and the next thing you know…cannibalism! Ahem…


Second Mother – Excellent film from Brazil about a housekeeper who’s estranged daughter comes to live with her. Much drama, hilarity, life lessons, class divides and maybe (hopefully) a smattering of cannibalism, I presume, ensue.


Tokyo Tribe – Crazy fun trip from Sion Sono (Why Don’t You Play in Hell?), who seems to be giving Miike a run for his money in the prolific department, about an alternate reality Japan where gangs rule the streets and fight it out via epic rap battles! Sounds pretty alright to me.


True Detective Season 2 – New cast! New crimes! New moustaches! (Should be showing up on the shelves sometime today (Tuesday).

Coming Soon!

Beeba Boys
Hotel Transylvania 2
Irrational Man
The Martian
Mr. Robot Season 1
Sherlock: The Abominable Bride
Sinsiter 2
This Changes Everything

Recently Viewed and Recommended

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
Bone Tomahawk
The Visit
Nasty Baby
Mississippi Grind
Nathan for You
The Leftovers S1
Hannibal S3

That’s it for this week, my lovelies. Have a splendid week. Stay warm. Stay dry. Stay hydrated. Keep Watching.

Copyright © 2016 Black Dog Video, All rights reserved.