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The Latest DVD, Blu Ray & VOD Releases

By John Moore

The Latest DVD, Blu Ray & VOD Releases

One Man's Madness (Cadiz Music)
Over the years, the music documentary genre has become fairly predictable. VH1 set up the template years ago with Behind the Music and a whole generation of filmmakers seems to be on autopilot recreating it again and again. But, thankfully the British ska band Madness, who've bucked convention from the very beginning, continue their streak of non-conformity and bring it to this doc. One Man's Madness, a documentary about Lee Thompson, band co-founder, sax player and one of their chief songwriters, dresses in various costumes and wigs and lip synchs (sometimes horribly) the audio of everyone interviewed for this doc. The ridiculousness of this spectacle is enjoyably compelling, and perfectly in line with Madness as a band - irreverent, creative and above all else, fun.

The Awesomes: The Complete Series (Mill Creek)
It would seem The Awesomes had all the right elements to be another adult-themed cartoon in the molf of Bob's Burgers or Archer; The show was co-created by Seth Myers and included voices by a slew of former SNL cast members like Maya Rudolph, Fred Armisen, Bill Hader and Andy Samberg. Unfortunately, that talent never translated easily into the series about a group of young, inexperienced superheroes taking over for a band of retiring superheroes. The jokes are simply predictable and largely uninspired. The fact that the Hulu series was initially passed over by both Syfy and MTV before landing at the streaming service was probably an obvious sign worth paying attention to.

Here To Be Heard: The Story of The Slits (Cadiz Music)
The Sex Pistols and The Clash may have soaked up most of the international press when British punk rock first took off in the late- '70s, but The Slits were just as subversive with even more obstacles to overcome: an all-female group fronted by a 14-year-old singer. This doc does a commendable job of telling their story through surviving members and plenty of grainy black and white footage from their early days. While the bulk of the movie's focus is rightfully on the band's initial run up until 1982, the last 20 minutes or so are devoted to their reformation - with mostly new members - from 2005 to 2010. A great look back at one of the underrated pioneers of the British punk movement.

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