Birthday smokes

Me: “So Gus, it’s Julius’ birthday tomorrow, what do you want to get or make him?” Gus:” I dunno. What does Julius like? Cigarettes? I could get him some cigarettes because I don’t know how to make them.”

Black Dog Video Newsletter for Week Ending April 18th

Sorry for the late newsletter this week folks. I was hoping to have it out on Monday as usual but the world conspired against me. Again. I was swamped with stuff like kitchen renos, 2 beer lunch, attacked by wolverines, you know, life. Anyways…

As far as I can remember there has not been a week like this week for New Releases. And I don’t think that I mean that in a good way. For the first time, maybe ever, there isn’t a single film that I’m familiar with! I don’t understand why the powers that be that are in charge of releasing films would do something like this! Make no sense. So henceforth, this week shall be known by thee name, and thus name only, as the Tuesday of Motion Pictures Unbeknownst to All Who Gaze Upon their Shiny Unfamiliar Descriptive Casings. Next week will more than make up for this week’s weak offerings. Until then enjoy some great older titles, or some of the old hockey game (but not too much).

For those of you not interested in the Canucks drive for the Cup (I know that you’re out there), please don’t forget to take advantage of our swell deals – Wednesday – 5 old great films for a measly $8.00, Sunday to Thursday 2 films for $7.00 – one old one new or two old, two new for $10.00. $35.00 buys you a pre-paid punch card good for 10 films of your choosing (includes new releases and blu rays!) And the T-shirts! Have I mentioned the T-Shirts? Well they’re going fast so come on in and get yours soon!

New Releases for Tuesday April 12th

Country Strong – The box quote says “You don’t have to be country fan to love this movie” No, and you don’t have to have any fucking teeth to eat corn on the cob. Get what I’m saying? I think that I’d rather pour hot wax into my ears and gouge my eyes out with a warm spoon that watch and listen to Gwyneth Paltrow warble her way through this thing. But that’s me.

Farewell – This one I’ve never heard of but it looks pretty darn cool – if you like the spy capers. And I like the spy capers, gimme a good spy caper any day. And this one is reportedly based on a true story about a KGB dude who decides to secretly (all spies do things in secret) give intel to the “enemy”. And it has the great rubbery faced Willam Dafoe in it and, for some reason, a quote from Ronald Reagan on the box! Which is strange unless it’s from a critic by the same name. Who knows these days?

Let Him Be – Two dudes come across a brief video clip of what they think is an older John Lennon (guy from a band called The Beatles) playing some music. Of course they set out on an odyssey to discover the truth. Never heard of this one but I like the premise.

Looking for Pallidin – Have not heard of this film but it may be interesting to some as we follow a Hollywood agent who travels to Guatemala in search of actor Ben Gazzara. Seems to be one of those films about self-yawn-discovery.

Re-Cut – Never heard of this horror number but for us horror aficionados out there this one looks nice and grim. Looks a combination of Wicker Man, Last Exorcism, Eden Lake and any number of “crazy small town-folk hiding a nasty secret” type films.

Summer in Genoa – Not familiar with this number despite the excellent cast – Colin Firth, Catherine Keener, swell director Michael Winterbottom and the lovely Italian setting of, you guessed it, Genoa. Firth’s a dude who loses his wife and then moves his two daughters form the States to Italy to “start over”. Looks like it could be pretty good, even if I haven’t heard of it.

Summer Lover – I think that this one may be a bit of a lesbian romp in the sun. Not too sure as it is unfamiliar to me but the main character’s name is Sappho and she travels to the island of Lesbos for a “vacation” And the cover art kinda gives it away as well.

Vision: From the Life of Hildegard Von Bingen – I’ve been waiting my entire life for a bio-pic of famed 12th century nun Hildegard Von Bingen! Oh happy day! Kidding aside, this is supposed to be an excellent film directed by famed director Margarethe Von Trotta.

White Material – The awesomely great Isabelle Huppert plays a crazy entitled white woman living in South Africa who refuses to give up the family’s crumbling coffee plantation as civil war rages around the place. Directed by the greatly awesome Claire Denis. And it’s a Criterion release!

Releasing on Friday the 15th

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows Pt 1 – Never heard of this Harold Potter fellow but I hear he’s quite popular amongst the youngings and the wizard and warlock crowd. Also on the blu ray.

Old Stuff

The Sins of Madame Bovray – If you know who Edwige Fenech is you may have seen this, if you haven’t I’m sure that you will want to. If you don’t know who she is well now’s your chance!

Coming Next Week

  • The King’s Speech
  • Guilliver’s Travels
  • Somewhere
  • Rabbit Hole
  • Goemon
  • I Love You Philip Morris
  • Colditz
  • Like Dandelion Dust
  • Street Kings 2

Recently Viewed and Recommended

  • Tron Legacy
  • Nurse Jackie S 2
  • The Infidel
  • Treme S 1
  • Made in Dagenham
  • Fair Game
  • Lemmy
  • Four Lions
  • Carlos the Jackal
  • The Walking Dead S 1
  • Alamar
  • The Girl

Internets! F@#K Ya!

I don’t usually throw political like stuff in here but I feel the need to include this humorous, but spot on, piece. Anything I can do to help unseat Harper. Man, I hate that guy! There’s a few F-Bombs sprinkled in hear, just so ya know..

I know there’s a couple of you out there you are interested in Canadian film and what not. If you are check out the First Weekend Club as they are all knowing, all seeing in the realms of Canadian cinema –

When I first saw this website I thought it was real. Real creepy!

And speaking of creepy. I’m not too sure why I put this in here. Maybe just for the WTF factor? Enjoy…[youtube][/youtube]

Have a great week folk! Go Canucks but also go movies!

Black Dog Video

Pile of Garbage

Gus: “Your choice is jumping in a pile of garbage or letting me watch TV. What’s your choice?”

Black Dog Newsletter for Week Ending April 11th

So it seems that a few of you out there have been wondering what ever happened to the online catalogue portion of our website. Well, I’ll tell you what happened…way back in the day we were working towards having our entire inventory online. It was a huge undertaking (from my point of view) with having to manually add each title, year it was made, country of origin, director and a featured actor. We printed out a copy of the inventory and then took turns entering the data. We made it about half way through until one of our staff (no names mentioned here) lost the copy of the inventory. It was then that we put the kibosh on the entire affair. Enter the new site. Since we only had maybe 50% of the catalogue online, I decided to scrap that portion of the website. That said I am contemplating redoing it. I would like to find a better method than individually entering each of the 10,000 titles we have as I think I’ll probably be in my grave before it’s completed. Stay tuned.

And another reminder of our fabulous deals; Sunday to Thursday – 2 films (one old, one new or two old) for $7.00 or two New flicks for $10.00. Wednesday you can grab 5 old titles for a paltry $8.00. And don’t forget our great deal pre-paid punch cards – you get 10 films (new or old) for only $35.00! Holy hotdogs!

New Releases for Tuesday April 5th

Crime D-Amour – Sexy French corporate thriller finds sexy boss Kristen Scott Thomas making life difficult for her sexy underling Ludivine Sagnier (remember her from the sexy Swimming Pool?) French + sexy = well, you decide.

Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader – I guess this is the second film in the trilogy about a talking lion and a witch and maybe some sort of magical wardrobe? Not too sure, haven’t seen the films or read the books but if you know about this dreadfully titled ditty then have at it. Also on Blu Ray.

La Nostra Vida – Great Italian film about a family and their struggles to live in modern day Rome. When the dad discovers a body on the construction site that he works, he doesn’t report it for fear of the work coming to a halt. Complications (of course) ensue.

Little Fockers – Oh why do these things exist and why must I bring this kind of dreck into the store? Ben Stiller, Robert DeNiro and the rest of the cast should be made to go to everyone’s house a give them a foot massage as penance for making this film. Actually if you want to read an interesting article written by another video store owner about this type of dilemma and just the general state of this business check out this article…
My favorite line – Little Fockers is about half as funny as Joseph Vilsmaier’s Stalingrad (1993) and twice as depressing. And no, I did not get the blu ray.

Not Your Typical Bigfoot Movie – Whew, that’s good because I’m getting a little tired of all of the Bigfoot movies inundating the screens nowadays. Actually I can’t think of one Bigfoot film. So, in reality, I could be pleased with a typical Bigfoot movie. But I digress…While yes the is some Bigfoot hunting in this film, it’s really about the friendship forged between a couple of dudes in a small, dying Ohio steel town. Looks pretty cool. Not your typical documentary.

The Taqawacores – Interesting sounding little film about a Muslim dude growing up in Buffalo NY (poor bastard) where he meets other Muslims who are into Taqawacore – a hardcore, Muslim punk rock scene that only exists out west. Drama, hilarity, punk rock partying and such, presumably, ensue.

Tron – The new Tron subtitled Legacy or Destiny or Overindulgent or Heritage or Reckoning or Vs Predator or something. What it has going for it – it’s very cool looking with a fantastic soundtrack by Daft Punk but that’s about it. A couple of Jeff Bridges – one current – looks kinda like the dude but with nicer, more futuristic clothes, and one computer generated Jeff Bridges trying to make him look 25 years younger – he looks really creepy and waxy, star in this sequel to the mediocre sci-fi film from years gone by. I don’t really understand what these films were about and they try hard at the exposition but it’s all silly. And why do they have to fill the roles of the handsome young guy with all of these cookie-cutter jarhead type of guys that all look and act the same and everyone will forget five minutes after watching the film? Anyways that’s kinda my two cents – looks cool but evaporates from the brain as soon as the credits role. On the blu-ray as well.

Coming Next Week

  • Highwater
  • I Am You
  • Let Him Be
  • Looking for Palladin
  • Re-Cut
  • Summer in Genoa
  • Summer Lover
  • Vision: From the Life of Hildegard Von Bingen
  • Affaire Farewell

Recently Viewed and Recommended

  • Black Swan
  • La Nostra Vida
  • Little Fockers – Ha! Just kidding.
  • Nurse Jackie S 2
  • Californication S 3
  • Mad Men S 4
  • Treme S 1
  • Meserine
  • Jackass 3
  • The Fighter

Internets, Great Job!

Here’s a fine article from the Onion (of course) about their favorite scenes from films from the 80’s. Yeah, Oldboy! Are there any of your favorites that they left out? For me there’s the scene from There Will Be Blood where the oil rig explodes and has that great music from the guy from Radiohead, the getaway scene from Children of Men, the opening and actually many scenes from City of God,35888/2/

If you have and iPhone and have ever been confounded by the auto correct on the text portion of the phone you will probably find these very funny…

From the First Weekend Club comes some passes to check out Daydream Nation and other news about Canadian films –

And speaking of bland run-of-the-mill looking dudes getting sweet roles…A film series that I’m looking forward to – The Hunger Games Trilogy – took a step forward by announcing that Jennifer Lawrence will play the lead Katniss but then took two steps backward by giving the two male leads to these dudes…

Anyways that’s it for this week. Enjoy the rain and the great movies to be found at your local video store (hope that it’s Black Dog!)

Black Dog Video

I’m a Vampire! I’m a Vampire!

Gus: “You know I’m a real vampire…but I don’t drink people blood, just blood from the store.”

Black Dog Video Newsletter for Week Ending April 4th

Did anyone read the article in last week’s Westender titled “Internet Killed the Video Store”? I don’t think that I need to go into detail as the title pretty much says it all. As you all know it’s been tough times for our business as of late and it seems that things are not getting any easier. There are just too many options for people to get their entertainment nowadays. Since that article ran, the fine shop Happy Bats on Main St. has closed its doors and I know of three other stores that will be shutting down operations between now and the end of the summer. I am pleased that we are still able to keep going but as mentioned, business is just not what it used to be even a scant 2 years ago. I love this business and just about everything about it – the films, the employees, our great customers and their dogs and just about everything in between and we will keep going as long as you keep coming. I put myself in my customers shoes – where would I go to get the fine selection of films provided by friendly knowledgeable staff if there are no more video stores? We have had such great support throughout the years and I hope that this support can keep us going and enable us to bring quality films to the people.

Tuesday is my favorite day of the week as that’s the day that the new films hit the shelves and when we have a great week like this week, I get excited to get these films into your hands. It is easily the best week of the year so far and I hope that you all can find some quality entertainment to brighten up your days.

Oh and one other note – there will be a slight increase in the price of the New Release TV stuff – $4.00 per disk, up from $3.50. I hope that you all can handle that. If you can’t just think of all of our other fantastic deals we have going on – 2 for $7 Sunday to Thursday or 2 New Releases for $10, 5 old films for $8.00 on Wednesdays, the pre-paid punch card, swell new Black Dog T-Shirts, the mind reels!

New Releases for Tuesday March 29th

American Violet – Well reviewed heavy duty drama about a single African-American mother who struggles to clear her name after being wrongly accused and arrested for dealing drugs in an impoverished town in Texas. Impoverished Texas town; I was looking for a good vacation spot this summer.

Birdemic : Shock and Terror – One of the worst films ever put to celluloid as they makers of this thing proudly state. It seems the for reasons unknown and gaggle of vultures and condors or some other carnivorous birds attack a sleepy little town somewhere. Sleepy little, vicious bird riddled town; another choice place to vacation.

Black Swan – Probably the best “ballet dancer spirals downwards into a morass of insanity” film ever made. The lovely and scarily skinny Natalie Portman won some kind of award for playing the doomed dancer but it’s Vincent Cassel who, in my opinion, is the best thing in this gripping thriller. I was really bagged when I watched this and was thinking “do I really want to watch a friggin movie about ballet?” Glad I did as I was enthralled from the beginning. One of the best films I’ve seen this year by far. Also on the Blu-Ray.

Fair Game – Pretty solid political thriller based on the true account of a couple – he’s Sean Penn and he works various consulting jobs and she’s Naomi Watts and she’s an undercover spy. When Sean Penn doesn’t give the evil Bush cronies the info they want on some bogus sale of uranium to Iraq, Naomi Watts’ cover is revealed by some Republican scumbags. I still have a hard time with the fact that none the Bush criminals have ever been brought up on charges for all of the various heinous crimes they committed. Makes me so mad! That said, this is a good film although it gets a bit preachy at the end. I’m looking at you, Sean Penn! Also on the Blu Ray.

Heartless – An outcast dude – because he has a large unfortunate birthmark on his face – discovers that there are demons roaming the streets, eating people and just generally demonizing some run down part of London. Again, another great vacation idea! Really looking forward to checking this one out! And it’s on the blu ray.

Leaving – Kristin Scott Thomas is a well to do woman in France who decides to leave (get it, the title of the film) her family for some dude. Only in France..

Mad Men Season 4 – Don Draper continues to smoke, drink and fuck his way through 1960’s New York. And wear great suits! Love this freakin’ show! And it’s on the blu-ray as well.

Made in Dagenham – Sally Hawkins stars as a woman who leads a 1968 strike at the Ford Dagenham car plant, where female workers walked out in protest against sexual discrimination. Word has it that’s its quite excellent. Word. Blu Ray = yes!

The Man from Nowhere – South Korean flick about a quiet pawnshop keeper with a violent past who takes on a drug and organ trafficking ring in hope of saving the child who is his only friend. Word has it that it’s an excellent thriller with a great knife fight. Who doesn’t enjoy a sweet knife fight every know and then? And on Blu Ray as well.

Tangled – Very well received animated fare based on the Rupunzel fairy tale. I imagine this one includes talking and/or singing animals and/or hair. On blu Ray as well.

Treme Season 1 – Most excellent show about life in New Orleans after the big hurricane and what not tried to wreck the town a few years back. Brought to you by the cats who made The Wire so you know its going to be quality.

IP Man on Blu Ray has also just arrived.

Coming Next Week

  • Crime D’Amour
  • La Nostra Vida
  • Little Fockers
  • Not Your Typical Bigfoot Movie
  • Taqacores
  • Tron Legacy

Recently Viewed and Recommended

  • Black Swan
  • Fair Game
  • Treme S 1
  • Mad Men S 4
  • Made in Dagenham
  • Dogtooth
  • The Fighter
  • Unstoppable
  • Carlos the Jackal
  • Jackass 3
  • Inside Job
  • Four Lions
  • The Infidel
  • Lemmy


Mark down April 22nd if you want to be part of a bizarre evening. The Rio on Broadway will be host to “An Evening with the Quaids” as Randy and his wife, Evi storm the theatre to present a viewing of Real Time and then a work in progress print of the Quaids Star Whackers with a Q and A and maybe even some singing and dancing. Funny to see this show up in The Onion. Should be quite the evening.,53746/

So did Natalie Portman do all of her own dancing in Black Swan or didn’t she. Better yet, who really cares?,53749/

Here’s a list of the most profitable films in history. You might be surprised and repulsed to find out the film in the number 1 slot.

That’s it for this edition, folks. Have a great week and remember, keep watching.

Black Dog Video

Black Dog Video

Greatest movie character of all time??

I just barfed in my mouth a little bit when I read this headline…Forrest Gump voted greatest movie character of all time. Bond #2, Scarlett O’Hara #3, Hannibal Lecter #4.

Who voted in this thing? What’s wrong with people?


After my wife said no to the third cookie for the third time, Gus comes to her with a fake mustache, disguising his voice: “Excuuuse me miss, may I puhleese have a cookie?”


Me: “So there’s going to be a really big moon tonight, it’s called a Supermoon” Gus: “Supermoon? Will it be wearing a cape?”

Black Dog Newsletter for Week Ending March 14th

Black Dog just turned 15! Holy hotdogs that’s a long time. What started out as our cute little baby has transformed into an unruly teenager. I don’t have the best memory in all of the land but I can still remember our first day way back in 1996. It was a Saturday and it was at the original location across the street from the current store on Cambie Street. We had astroturf for carpeting, a handful of films to rent and unbridled enthusiasm in our hearts. I thought that it would be a good idea to write the numbers of the films on dog biscuits, shellack them and velcro them to the shelves in front of the corresponding boxes. Nice funny idea, something different, no? It lasted approximately 30 minutes or when the first dog came in and promptly ate all of the biscuits on the bottom row. Didn’t really think that one through it seems. It’s been a great ride so far and while things have changed in our industry, I still hope that we can remain a vital part of the neighborhoods that we are in and continue to provide you fine folk with some great films, wonderful service and witty conversation for many years to come.

I hate to disappoint those of you who were looking forward to that pizzeria opening up on Kitchener and Victoria (I know that I was) but it seems that some “miscommunication” with the owners and the pizza dudes over a liquor license has put the kibosh on the joint getting off the ground. That’s too bad.

And just a reminder – Black Dog T-Shirts are available at both locations for a mere $20 plus tax. There’s a visual at the bottom of the newsletter so you can see how sweet they are.

And one more reminder – deals deals deals! Sunday to Thursday – 2 films for $7 (one new, one old or 2 old) or 2 New Releases for $10. Wednesdays – 5 old films for $8! and don’t forget the great punch card offer – $35 will net you 10 films! Sweet deals indeed!

New Releases for Tuesday March 8th

Every Day – Family drama/comedy set in some place called New York. Has a pretty good cast – Liev Schreiber, Helen Hunt, Eddie Izzard, Brian Dennehy and others walking around and talking and acting and such.

A Film Unfinished – Doc about the Warsaw Ghetto in WWII. Supposed to be quite amazing in a haunting kind of way – go figure. What makes this movie interesting is it’s a film about an unfinished film about the people behind as well as in front of the camera that exposes the extent of how cinematic manipulation can and does change the way we look at historic images. Got that? Good.

Four Lions – Comedy about 4 British jihadists and their attempt to blow a lot of shit up using bombs tied to crows. Word has it that it’s very funny (Its says so at least 15 times on the box!) No surprise that this didn’t get any kind of theatrical release here as the subject matter might be too much for many weak-minded people. Can’t wait to check this one out.

Inside Job – Oscar winner for best doc, this one takes aim at the lying, disgusting sacks of shit who orchestrated the financial coup d’état and taxpayer bailout of 2008. As the guy who made the film said at his acceptance speech at the Oscars, ” Forgive me, I must start by pointing out that three years after our horrific financial crisis caused by financial fraud, not a single financial executive has gone to jail, and that’s wrong.” Looking forward to watching this to get the blood boiling. I like boiled blood, OK?

Jackass 3 – And on the opposite end of the spectrum comes….Jackass. More of the same except that everyone is a little bit older and more broken down. Good stuff (I saw it in the theatre in the 3-D – not in 3-D on the DVD though). Might make a good double bill with Inside Job as you may need this to temper the rage you will feel after watching. (Inside Job, not Jackass – well you may feel rage at Jackass but those are your issues).

Lemmy -What can one say about Lemmy? Even if you’re not a Motorhead fan (who isn’t a Motorhead fan?) word has it that this doc about the famous frontman is terribly entertaining and awesomely awesome.

Morning GloryBroadcast News type comedy drama finds the lovely Rachel McAdams, the lovelier Harrison Ford and Diane Keaton (she’s a little lovely in her own right) as a bunch of people working on a down and out TV show or something like that. I thought that Morning Glory referred to something naughty? Guess I’ll have to watch to find out. Also on the Blu Ray.

The Next Three Days – Russell Crowe (yes thee Russell Crowe!) stars in this thriller about a dude who wants to bust his wife out of prison. May I suggest the classic nail file in the cake ploy? Do people still bust out of prison or get busted out of prison? Written and directed by the dude who made Crash. Remake of the pretty good French thriller Anything for Her. Also on the Blu Ray.

Room in Rome – A couple of women spend a lot of time naked in a hotel room in Rome in this steamy romantic lesbian number. Contest at the end of the Newsletter for a couple of copies!

Tales from Earthsea – Japanamation in the Miyazaki vein (It’s directed by his son, so yes, it’s definitely in that vein) that has wizards and dragons and such doing stuff.

The Walking Dead Season 1 – Pretty cool zombie apocalypse TV thriller that follows some people after the outbreak of said zombie apocalypse. I must get my zombie apocalypse survival kit together soon. Also on the Blu Ray.

The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia – Doc about this crazy criminal family – The Whites (duh) – who were famous for things such as shoot-outs, robberies, gas-huffing , drug dealing, pill popping, murders, and tap dancing. Sounds like a fun filled time!

Hitting the Sheets Next Week

  • Skyline
  • The Fighter
  • Inside Hanna’s Suitcase
  • No One Knows About Persian Cats
  • Hereafter
  • Chevolution
  • A Marine Story
  • Carlos the Jackal
  • The Temptation of St. Tony
  • Sharktopus

Recently Viewed and Recommended

  • Walking Dead Season 1
  • Jackass 3
  • 127 Hours
  • Nurse Jackie
  • Enter the Void
  • Dogtooth
  • Social Network
  • Mesrine 1 and 2

What Else?

As mentioned we have a few copies of Room in Rome – – to give away. Today’s skill testing question? Well since I know nothing of the film or actresses let’s just go with “What’s the fastest land animal?”

Tarantino’s next film looks like it could be cool. A western. The Coen’s True Grit was most excellent so let’s hope that QT knows what he’s doing (he usually does).

Ever hear of this guy named Charlie Sheen? Seems he’s a bit crazy. And a bit over media saturated. Need proof?,52726/

Here’s what the funky new BD shirts look like. Also comes in a nice blue. You like?

Have a great week. Keep watching!

Black Dog Video