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Thursday, April 24, 2014



DVD and Blu-ray Releases for December 14th, 2010

This week we have the last of the major summer blockbusters hitting the home market, and not only did Despicable Me earn $250 million domestically and more than $500 million worldwide, it also earned amazing reviews. This makes it an obvious contender for Pick of the Week. Unfortunately, the screener is late, and I hate to award that honor to a release when this is the case. As far as its competition is concerned, there are two main releases vying for that title: The Quintessential Guy Maddin! on DVD and The Town on Blu-ray. Despite my well-documented pro-Canada bias, I'm giving it to the latter.

24: Season Eight - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
This show is one that was practically made for home market releases and it is best watched in one or two marathon sessions. On the other hand, after the fist few seasons, the quality was erratic. Did the season end on a high note? Won't know till the screener arrives. Also coming out this week is the Complete Series Megaset.

2010 San Francisco Giants: World Series Collectors Edition - Buy from Amazon
I know a lot of people are thinking, "Didn't this come out last week?" No, last week they released the single-disc season recap. This week they released full games. I appreciate them giving consumers a choice, but releasing them one week after the other smells like a cash grab.

A-Team - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
This was an expensive film to make and it was based on a popular TV show, so a lot of people were expecting big things. However, it wasn't able to match original expectations. It wasn't a bomb and if it can become a hit on the home market it should still break even. Does it deserve to break even? Won't know for sure till the screener arrives.

Army Wives: Complete Fourth Season - Buy from Amazon
Still waiting on the screener for this show. I've reviewed the previous seasons, so hopefully this one will arrive soon.

Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: 24: Season Eight, The A-Team, The Black Pirate, Brian Setzer Oschestra: It's Gonna Rock, Cyrus, Despicable Me, Hard Boiled, Harsh Times, Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work, The Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'hoole, MicMacs, Mother and Child, Neil Young: Le Noise, The Other Guys (Blu-ray / DVD Combo Pack), The Other Guys (Blu-ray), The Town, True Grit, Vampire Circus
This week's selection of Blu-ray releases include a number of interesting choices. The best-seller is Despicable Me, while The Town is also worth picking up (although you will have to wait till the weekend to do so).

Blu-ray 3-D Releases - Buy from Amazon: Despicable Me and Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'hoole
Two more 3-D releases coming out this week, both of which are day-and-date releases with their regular Blu-ray counterparts. There are still far too few such releases to make the leap to 3-D worth it, but at least Despicable Me is a good movie.

Note: This DVD made its home market debut on the 9th of November.

Californication: Season Three - Buy from Amazon
I've been on the bubble over this show for a while. Will this be the season I'm finally won over? Or will it be the season where my hatred of the main character becomes too much to take? Read our review to find out.

Christmas Releases - Buy from Amazon: The Honeymooners: Christmas Special
Just the one Christmas release this week, at least that's the only one I noticed.

Cyrus - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
The only review on this week's list that is for a release that is actually coming out this week. It was also one of the few limited releases that came out this summer to earn any measure of mainstream success. Did it deserve this? Does it deserve even more success on the home market? Check out our review for my opinion.

Despicable Me - Buy from Amazon: DVD, Two-Disc DVD, Blu-ray / DVD / Digital Copy Combo Pack, or 3D / Blu-ray / DVD Digital Copy Combo Pack
One of the releases this week where I'm still waiting on the screener. It did earn incredible reviews and it was one of the biggest surprise hits of the summer, so as long as the Blu-ray lives up to this, it will be a serious contender for Pick of the Week. Hopefully I'll find out soon.

Exit Through the Gift Shop - Buy from Amazon
I have no idea how to describe this documentary. It might be about a graffiti artist who was so influential on the documentarian who wanted to profile him, that he converted him to his style. Or it might be about a documentarian who wanted to use a graffiti artist's fame to boost his career and therefore copied his style. It might be a weird performance art piece where the documentarian became a graffiti artist, while the graffiti artist became the documentarian. I don't know, and even if the documentarian and the graffiti artist in question told me the truth, I'm not sure I would believe them, as it could be part of the performance. Regardless, the movie earned amazing reviews and it is absolutely worth picking up.

Frenemy - Buy from Amazon
Also known as Little Fish, Strange Pond. This is one of several releases on this week's list where I'm still waiting on the screener. The good news is that I've mostly cleared the slate of other late arrivals, so when it does arrive, I should be able to get to right away. If it does arrive.

GasLand - Buy from Amazon
Impeccable reviews, bad box office numbers. Since this DVD appeared on Part III of our holiday gift guide, if should come as no surprise that I'm highly recommending it this week.

Note: This DVD made its home market debut on the 13th.

Hannah Montana: Who Is Hannah Montana? - Buy from Amazon
With the show coming to a close, this will likely be one of the last Hannah Montana DVDs released, unless they continue with the full-season sets, or more mixed sets. Will this single-disc DVD satisfy real fans till these full-season sets come out? Check out our review for my opinion.

Hawaii Five-O: Season Ten - Buy from Amazon
Another release where I'm waiting on the screener. I bet they will all arrive on the same day, just to annoy me.

The Immaculate Conception of Little Dizzle - Buy from Amazon
That's the kind of name that makes you stop and take notice. A lot times when this happens, the name is the only thing worth noting; however, that is not the case here as its reviews are very strong. Granted, there's not a lot of them, so the margin of error is a fairly large. It should still be worth checking out for fans of indie films.

It Crowd: Complete Fourth Season - Buy from Amazon
Great show, but $18.99 for six episodes is a lot, even for those used to paying a premium for British imports.

Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
This documentary look at Joan Rivers earned outstanding reviews and just shy of $3 million at the box office. The DVD and Blu-ray have an audio commentary track, deleted scenes, and a Q&A session, but the latter costs nearly twice as much as the former and that's too much to pay.

Leave It to Beaver: Season Five - Buy from Amazon
The Complete Series came out in June, but they are releasing season sets every few months for those who were planning on quitting partway through the show's run.

Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole - Buy from Amazon: DVD, Blu-ray / DVD / Digital Copy Combo Pack, or 3D Blu-ray / Blu-ray / DVD / Digital Copy Combo Pack
This film cost $100 million to make, but made barely half that at the box office, and that's with 3-D ticket prices. It's not as bad as its box office performance would otherwise indicate, but it is also not one of the best digitally animated releases of the year. The DVD has no extras, but the Blu-ray takes advantage of the format with a Picture-in-Picture track and interactive extras, plus the 3-D version is coming out this week as well. However, it is coming out on the weekend, not Tuesday, so take note of that.

Note: This DVD made its home market debut on the 9th of November.

Lie to Me: Season Two - Buy from Amazon
One of literally dozens of police procedural shows that are currently on TV, if you include network and cable, perhaps even if you don't include cable. This one tries to stand out by using a scientific approach to lie detection. Is it enough? Read our review to find out.

Note: This DVD made its home market debut on the 23rd of November.

Madea's Big Happy Family: The Play - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
There was a Flood or Tyler Perry movies that came out on Blu-ray not too long ago that I previously reviewed. The same week his most recent play came out on DVD and Blu-ray, but the screener arrived late. Was it worth the wait? Check out our review for my opinion.

Mother and Child - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A strong ensemble cast and equally strong reviews wasn't enough to help this film thrive in limited release. Granted, hitting $1 million isn't easy, but I would have liked to have seen it perform better. Perhaps its two Independent Spirit Award Nominations will help it perform better on the home market.

Nanny McPhee Returns - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
The second Nanny McPhee film actually earned slightly better reviews than the first film did, but was not able to match its predecessor at the box office. Extras on the DVD include an audio commentary track, deleted scenes, and a whole gaggle of small featurettes, while the Blu-ray is BD-Live enabled and allows you to stream one of two kids movies, but it also costs 50% more. If your kids like the first movie, then this one is also worth checking out, but I think the DVD is the better deal.

The Other Guys - Buy from Amazon: DVD, Blu-ray, or Blu-ray / DVD / Digital Copy Combo Pack
Will Ferrell's box office / critical performance has been mixed lately, but this movie not only reached the century mark, it also won over critics. Despite earning more than $100 million, the DVD / Blu-ray releases appear to be just average with extended / deleted / alternative scenes, outtakes, and a single featurette, but that's still a solid rental, leaning toward a purchase. It is also coming out on a Rated Edition DVD, but I don't think anyone is paying attention to that one. I assume the Unrated Version contains R-rated language, and that's the only real difference between the two versions.

Prayers for Bobby - Buy from Amazon
A TV movie starring Sigourney Weaver as a mother of a son who comes out as gay, but she can't accept that because of her strict religious upbringing. The film earned good reviews and Sigourney Weaver earned an Emmy and a Golden Globe nomination for her performance. That's a great sign, but I'll have to wait till the screener arrives to determine if it is a rental or a purchase.

The Quintessential Guy Maddin! 5 Films from the Heart of Winnipeg - Buy from Amazon
Five films from Guy Maddin, which should either really entice someone, or scare them. Guy Maddin tends to make really great movies, but ones that definitely don't have mainstream appeal. This four-disc set includes five of his earlier films (the most recent one is Cowards Bend at the Knees) plus some short films, and lots of extras. Certainly worth picking up and a contender for Pick of the Week.

Robert Klein: Unfair & Unbalanced - Buy from Amazon
Robert Klein was the first person to have a stand-up comedy special on HBO, and 35 years later he's still at it. It's probably not the best work he has done, but even when Robert Klein is a little off, he is still better than most.

Schoolgirl Report 7: What The Heart Must Thereby... - Buy from Amazon
Nothing say Christmas like German porn. ... I question the timing of this release. On a side note, the "Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought" List includes Perry Mason, Alien Anthology, and The Girl Who Played With Fire and its sequels. That's one odd collection of releases.

The Town - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
I'm kind of irritated that this film is coming out on DVD / Blu-ray this week. It's a great movie and I expect it to pick up some major Award Season nominations, so I was hoping it would earn a big enough bounce to cross $100 million at the box office. Now people are much more likely to rent / buy the DVD / Blu-ray than see it in theaters, so the century mark is out of reach. It is definitely worth checking out; however, the extras on the DVD are very light and it is only worth a rental. The Blu-ray is a little pricey compared to the DVD, but it does have two versions of the movie, plus additional extras, and it is worth picking up. In fact, it is so good, it is a contender for Pick of the Week. One last note, its coming out on the weekend, not Tuesday.

Trailer Park Boys Say Goodnight to the Bad Guys - Buy from Amazon
The final episode of the popular Canadian TV series. It was actually a TV special that aired after season seven, so it is not included in the previous Complete Series. If you are a fan, it is worth picking up.

TV Series Megaset - Buy from Amazon: 24
As the Christmas shopping season comes to a close, this type of release becomes a lot less common.

Note: This DVD made its home market debut on the 2nd of November.

White Christmas - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
At the beginning of last month, this Christmas classic was released on DVD and Blu-ray. The DVD arrived late and the Blu-ray still isn't here, but there's no sense it waiting any longer for the review.


- C.S.Strowbridge


Date posted: 2010-12-13

Movies 
 The Town
 The A-Team
 Cowards Bend the Knee
 Cyrus
 Despicable Me
 Exit Through the Gift Shop
 GasLand
 Harsh Times
 Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work
 Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole 3D
 Micmacs
 Mother and Child
 Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang
 The Other Guys
 True Grit
 White Christmas