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Saturday, August 30, 2014



DVD and Blu-ray Releases for July 15th, 2014

There is actually a $100 million hit on this week's list of new releases, which puts it miles ahead of most of recent weeks. Unfortunately, that new release is Rio 2, which isn't terrible, but it certainly isn't Pick of the Week material either. Worse still, there is practically no depth this week and almost none of the new DVDs / Blu-rays are Pick of the Week contenders. Fortunately, "Weird Al" Yankovic comes to the rescue with Mandatory Fun, which is a CD, which I normally don't talk about. As far as DVDs and Blu-rays are concerned, Orphan Black: Season 2 on Blu-ray is clearly the best.

Action Adventure Movie Marathon - Buy from Amazon
According to Amazon.com, this is in the top 20 best-selling new releases of the week. That's a sure sign that it is a slow week. Normally I don't even mention the package deals like this.

Black Dynamite: Season 1 - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
I'm going to try and get a screener to review. There are only two reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but they are both positive, so that's a good sign. In the meantime, if you live in Los Angeles, there is a signing event at Amoeba Records at 6:00pm - 7:30pm on Tuesday.

Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: Arch Triumph, Deadly Eyes, Laura Croft: Tomb Raider: Double-Feature, Majestic Prince: Collection 1, Pickpocket (Criterion Collection), SX_Tape, To Love Ru Darkness: Season 3: Complete Collection, WWE: United We Slam - Best of Great American Bash, and Yu-Gi-Oh! Bonds Beyond Time
Not a strong selection of secondary Blu-ray releases this week.

3D Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: Rio 2
There is only one 3D release this week, but it is the biggest release of the week.

Case Histories: Series 2 - Buy from Amazon
A British murder mystery series. This season is essentially three TV movies, which makes the price a little more respectable. On the other hand, the reviews for the two seasons have only been mixed.

Deadman Wonderland: Complete Series Classic - Blu-ray Combo Pack - Buy from Amazon
The first of two Anime releases on the first page of new releases on Amazon.com. It is that slow this week.

Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove: Season 1 - Buy from Amazon
Andie MacDowell stars as the titular character, a judge trying to decide whether or not to take an important appointment in Seattle or stay as a small-town judge. The film earned good reviews, but not great reviews, with many commenting it fits in with the usual Hallmark channel offerings.

The Face of Love - Buy from Amazon
Annette Bening stars as a woman whose husband died, but she meets someone new, who looks just like him. The reviews are weak and unless you really like Annette Bening, you can safely give it a pass.

Fairy Tail: Part 11 - Blu-ray Combo Pack - Buy from Amazon
The second of two Anime releases on the first page of new releases on Amazon.com. It is that slow this week.

Hell on Wheels: Season 3 - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A Western set in the post-Civil War west and focusing on railroads and revenge. The reviews are good, but not great. Likewise, extras are good, but not great. It is worth picking up for fans of the show, but it is not a Pick of the Week contender.

How The West Was Won: Season 2 - Buy from Amazon
This story was told as a movie, a TV movie, a TV mini-series and a TV series. I'm not sure which season this is. Considering only 25 episodes were made, including the TV movie, it might have been best to release it as a complete collection instead of confusing people like me.

Labyrinth - Buy from Amazon
A TV adaptation of the Kate Mosse novel. It earned good reviews, but not great reviews, and it is worth checking out, but likely not purchasing.

A Night in Old Mexico - Buy from Amazon
Robert Duvall is great in this movie, but he is the best part of an otherwise mediocre movie.

Open Grave - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
I'm still waiting for the screener. Hopefully it is better than the reviews would suggest.

Orphan Black: Season 2 - DVD or Blu-ray
One of the best TV shows currently airing. The central performance by Tatiana Maslany is one of the best you will find. Extras include behind-the-scenes, deleted scenes, and more. Easily worth picking up and a contender for Pick of the Week.

Note: This Blu-ray made its home market debut in February or May. I've seen both release dates.

Revenge of the Nerds - Blu-ray - Buy from Amazon
This Blu-ray arrived more than a month late, possibly four months late. The original release date according to Amazon.com was February 4th. Regardless, I finally got to the review this week, but was it worth the wait? Or is the movie really showing its age? Read our review for my opinion.

Rio 2 - Buy from Amazon: DVD, Blu-ray Combo Pack, or 3D Combo Pack
I might get a screener for this release. I reviewed the first film and thought it was okay, but nothing more. Hopefully I will like the sequel more.

Road to Paloma - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
This came out in theaters on Friday and I have nothing more to add today.

Scanners - Criterion Collect Blu-ray - Buy from Amazon
This is the kind of release I would normally stick with the secondary Blu-ray releases, but if I did that, there would be almost nothing to talk about. The film is one of David Cronenberg's films and many consider it one of his best. The extras are strong and the Blu-ray is certainly worth picking up.

Note: This Blu-ray made its home market debut on the 13th.

True Blood: The Complete Sixth Season - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
The final season for this show began airing recently, which means this review is really late. When it comes to TV on DVD, you really want to buy the previous season before the new season begins. However, in my defense, the screener didn't arrive till after the new season started, so I couldn't avoid this situation. Now that I have seen it, is it worth picking up? Or has the show declined in quality so much that even hardcore fans will have given up? Check out our review for my opinion.

Under the Skin - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
An art house Sci-fi film about... well, perhaps it's best not to say. It did well for a limited release, so will it find an audience with the average moviegoer? Or is it too art house? Read our review to find out.


- C.S.Strowbridge


Date posted: 2014-07-14

Movies 
 The Face of Love
 A Night in Old Mexco
 Open Grave
 Revenge of the Nerds
 Rio 2
 Scanners
 Under the Skin