Punch Drunk DVDs: 'Keanu', 'The Lobster', 'Batman: The Killing Joke'

From guest writer Zack Walsh

TV’s Key & Peele star as two straight laced suburbanites who go undercover as hardened killers to infiltrate a street gang and save their stolen kitten Keanu.

We Said: “Mistaken identity comedies rarely have much staying power because they rely so much on the single gag, but Keanu is literally a laugh-a-minute, often more.”               Rating: 4.5 out of 5

The Good: As a fan of the comedy duo, I loved seeing their sensibilities translate so well to film. The script is just as clever and bizarre as you would expect from a movie written by Key & Peele.

The Bad: While a great deal of the humor works as the cinematic equivalent of their sketch comedy, there are many moments that seemed to hold back and clean up some of their more dark jokes to please a wider movie-going audience, in a way they never did on TV.

Overall: Keanu is a mostly hilarious action-comedy drenched in Key & Peele’s signature biting social satire.

Special Features:  “Keanu: My First Movie”, Deleted Scenes, Gag Reel

In a world where being single for more than 45 days results in your being transformed into the animal of your choosing, Colin Farrell plays a sad and lonely man who must find a suitable mate fast.

We Said: “Credit [the director] for taking on an insanely complex love story that challenges social constructs, but the film works better as a satirical piece. Without its sense of humor The Lobster drags on and loses much of its edge, becoming just another film that's weird for the sake of being weird.” Rating: 3 out of 5

The Good: The absurdity of The Lobster is very often laugh out loud brilliant, with social commentary that really makes you think. This is certainly a film unlike any other.

The Bad: Very often, the pitch-black dark humor does not mix well with the heavy character drama in the plot. I found a good deal of this movie to be rather off-putting and puzzling, though I suppose that was part of its point.

Overall: This is a challenging, unique, frequently funny, though often upsetting surrealist satire of our society’s condemnation of loneliness.

In this controversial new animated film based on the classic graphic novel of the same name, Batman must save Commissioner Gordon from The Joker’s evil plot to drive him insane.

We Said: “Batman: The Killing Joke [isn’t] anything other than a disappointment unworthy of its source material.”   Rating: 2 out of 5

The Good: Mark Hamill knocks it out of the park as usual, and it’s great to hear the iconic Batman voice cast reunite. The Killing Joke is an interesting book, and the moments that directly adapt it are sure to please fans.

The Bad: As you might have read, the additions made to stretch the plot to a full runtime are misguided at best, and the animation is shockingly sloppy. It did not live up to its title.

Overall: As a casual BatFan, I was disappointed about as often as I was pleased. I’m sure these feelings would only be intensified for a more die-hard fan of the material.

Special Features: “Madness Set to Music”, “The Many Shades of Joker”, Two Batman Episodes, Preview of DC's Next Animated Movie