The Direct to Video Connoisseur

I'm a huge fan of action, horror, sci-fi, and comedy, especially of the Direct to Video variety. In this blog I review some of my favorites and not so favorites, and encourage people to comment and add to the discussion. If you click on an image, it will take you to that post's image page, which includes many more pics from the film and other goodies I couldn't fit in the actual review. For announcements and updates, don't forget to Follow us on Twitter and Like our Facebook page. If you're the director, producer, distributor, etc. of a low-budget feature length film and you'd like to send me a copy to review, you can contact me at dtvconnoisseur[at] I'd love to check out what you got.



Hi everyone, it's been a while since I checked the page, and I wanted to make a few announcements.

First and foremost, it appears a dubious site has claimed the old url, meaning any link in any review that goes to the old mattmovieguy url is corrupt. I'm in the process of trying to remove them all, but it's a lot! It's best not to click on any link without hovering over it first to make sure it doesn't have mattmovieguy in the url.

Second, it appears since my last trip to the blog, Photobucket has decided to charge for third party hosting, meaning none of my images are appearing anymore. That's simply an aesthetic issue, but still annoying.

Thank you all for your patience, and again, hopefully this will all be fixed soon.


Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Shadow Hours (2000)

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Wow. That's all I have to say bout this little gem. Wow. I found it on ShowtimeXtreme while scanning my program guide after a long night of reading for a class. The name Peter Weller was all I needed to pull me in, and this film did not disappoint.

In addition to DTVC Hall of Famer Peter Weller, this film has Balthazar Getty, Rebecca Gayheart, Corin Nemec (for like five minutes), the bad guy from The Mask, and Michael Dorn. I must say, even though I'm not a huge Trek guy, and I watched CHiPs long before Dorn donned the big bump in ST: TNG, it's still fun to see him in anything post Trek playing something other than a Klingon. It's an added wrinkle that this movie didn't need, but had, which made it all the more special.

Getty plays a recovering addict who takes a third shift job at a convenience store to support his wife Gayheart and the child they're expecting. He meets Weller, who plays a mysterious writer. Weller takes Getty all over the city, getting him into this situation or that, each one slightly more disturbing than the first. We start to wonder exactly who Weller's character really is, and it's never fully explained, but I think he's supposed to be the devil. In one great scene, Weller takes Getty to a pit fight, only to have Weller as one of the combatants. He roundly destroys his opponent, which frightens Getty, but is amazing to me.

What's not to like about this movie? It's got plenty of P Dubs, and we're reminded once again why he's in the Hall of Fame. As in other DTV movies he's done, he lends a touch of class and professionalism we often don't see in A-List stars doing big name pictures (Cage in National Treasure comes to mind, as does Travolta in the fraudulent Punisher-- we all know the real one had Dolph in it.). This movie doesn't just stop at Weller, though. They take it up a notch by adding in a post-Trek Dorn. Simply first rate. Furthermore, there isn't an overbearing plot or too much Getty to dampen the good parts. The Breed could take a cue from this and the way they used Adrian Paul.

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If I have one qualm, it's simply that this movie, when compared to some of Weller's other DTV greats, is a little lacking. If Top of the World or Shakedown didn't exist, I'd give this an A. But they do, so this is a B.

Rent this, buy this, TiVo it: it's all worth it. P Dubs lives up to his Hall of Fame name. This is the kind of movie you pass up a The Breed for. Do what you can to find this, you won't be disappointed.

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