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DVD and Blu-ray Releases for January 27th, 2015

January 27th, 2015

It is a really bad week for the home market with a lot of filler on the first page of the new releases on Amazon.com. Fury is the biggest release, but there are not enough extras on the DVD or Blu-ray to be a contender for Pick of the Week. The Book of Life, on the other hand, has a loaded DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack and is a contender. The only other real contender is The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness on DVD. In the end, I went with The Book of Life.

Before I Go to Sleep - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
This film has a good cast and earned some pre-release buzz, but the reviews were weak. Even if you like the cast, there are better options.

Big Driver - Buy from Amazon: DVD
An adaptation of a Stephen King story that earned mixed reviews, but that's on par with most Stephen King adaptations.

Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: A-Channel, La Ciénaga, Henry V, Hole in the Head, Jean De Florette / Manon Of The Spring, Jin-Roh: The Wolf Brigade, Log Horizon: Collection 2, Maid Sama: The Complete Collection, Pork Chop Hill, The Remaining, The Replacements, Return to Me, and The Usual Suspects: 20th Anniversary Edition
The Usual Suspects is the best movie on this list, at least in my opinion, but I'm not sure if it is worth the upgrade from previous releases.

3D Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: The Book of Life
Only one 3D release this week, but it is a good release and likely worth the extras $5.

The Book of Life - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
One of the best animated films of the year. I'm still waiting for the screener to judge for myself, but given its reviews it has to be at least a contender. It depends on the extras, which look excellent.

Born of War - Buy from Amazon: DVD
A low-budget action film that sat on a shelf for a couple of years before being released direct-to-DVD. That's not a good sign, but will the film surprise? It is at least better than the average Direct-to-DVD action film? Read our review for my opinion.

Crime Scene Cleaner - Buy from Amazon: DVD
A German comedy TV series about a crime scene cleaner. The reviews are excellent and it has even won a number of awards in its native Germany. The price-per-minute is lower than for most TV on DVD imports, which is an added bonus.

Downton Abbey: Season 5 - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
This show started off amazingly, but the reviews have slipped to merely good. Extras are okay, but not great. If you have purchased the previous releases, there's no reason to stop now. If you gave up after season four, it got better, but perhaps not enough to get back into the show.

Fury - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
This film earned very good reviews, but didn't quite live up to expectations at the box office. It will still need to do well on the home market to break even, but I don't think that will be a problem. The extras on the DVD are limited to a single 11-minute long featurette, but the Blu-ray has that, plus nearly an hour of deleted scenes and a trio of featurettes with a total running time of more than 40 minutes. It is worth picking up, but I wouldn't call it a Pick of the Week contender.

The Judge - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
This film has a great cast and earned a lot of buzz, but it earned mixed reviews and struggled at the box office. The extras are okay, but nothing special. It all adds up to a rental, nothing more.

Justice League: Throne of Atlantis - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
Not one of the better JLA movies that DC has put out in recent years.

The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness - Buy from Amazon: DVD
A documentary about Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli. The reviews are great and fans of Anime in general and of Hayao Miyazaki in particular will want to check it out.

Marie's Mind for Murder: Set 1 - Buy from Amazon: DVD
The first volume of a series of Germany TV movies starring Mariele Millowitsch as Inspector Marie Brand. The reviews for the individual movies are good and if you like Police Procedurals but want a German flavor, it is worth checking out.

Más negro que la noche (Blacker Than Night) - Buy from Amazon: DVD
This is a Mexican horror remake of a film from 1975. It was shot in 3D, but it is only coming out on a 2D DVD this week. Is the remake worth checking out? Or should those interested in the movie hunt down the original? Check out our review for my opinion.

Maison Close: Season 1 - Buy from Amazon: DVD
A French TV series about life in a brothel in the late 1800s. I put in a request to review this title, but the screener hasn't arrive yet (if it will arrive at all). I've heard good things about the show, including that it is a real TV show and not an excuse to show prostitutes naked.

Miss Meadows - Buy from Amazon: DVD
Normally a film with reviews this weak and did this poorly at the box office I would ignore it. However, it is a slow week.

My Little Pony: The Movie - 30th Anniversary Edition - Buy from Amazon: DVD
This is the first generation movie and not the most recent incarnation of the franchise.

My Old Lady - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
This film has a good cast but the overall film is just okay. If you like the cast it is worth checking out, but I think a rental will be enough for most.

Open Windows - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A horror / thriller that has been described as Hitchcockian by some. I never expected it to live up to that label, but is it at least good on its own terms? Read our review to find out.

Regular Show - Mordecai Pack - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
This is a good show, but they need to put out full-season sets already.

Why Don't You Play in Hell? - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A Japanese movie about a couple of failed filmmakers who are hired by the Yakuza to make an action movie. They don't have a script, but they have a lot of Yakuza soldiers who are willing to be injured or killed in the making of the movie. The reviews were excellent, but the movie is a little too extreme to find an audience in theaters. There are not a lot of extras on the DVD / Blu-ray, but that's common for a limited release. Definitely worth checking out for fans of the genre and worth picking up rather than just renting.


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Filed under: Video Releases, My Little Pony: The Movie, The Book of Life, Fury, Fury, The Judge, Before I Go to Sleep, My Old Lady, Yume to kyoki no ohkoku, Born of War, Open Windows, Más negro que la noche, Big Driver, Alfred Hitchcock, Stephen King, Hayao Miyazaki