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DVD and Blu-ray Releases for January 17th, 2012

January 16th, 2012

It's a slow week on the home market; there are four first run wide releases on this week's list, which is not bad, but only one of those, The Ides of March, earned reviews that were even remotely good. Unfortunately, there are only a few smaller releases that are worth checking out, so it's a pretty shallow week as well. As far as Pick of the Week is concerned, The Ides of March on DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack win that honor, practically by default.

Abduction - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Bu-ray Combo Pack
Every year you will see lists of the top 25 hottest movie stars under 25, and for the past few years, the cast of Twilight has been overrepresented on such lists. One should really wait till an actor has success outside of a populuar franchise before making judgment calls on their career potential. Some had amazig careers before these film, some will clearly have amazing careers after these films. I'm not so sure about Taylor Lautner. His first real test as the lead in a movie went poorly at the box office, and was savaged by critics. There are not a lot of extras on the DVD (trio of featurettes and outtakes) but the Blu-ray has a Picture-in-Picture track. Even so, it's one to avoid.

Adam-12: Season Six - Buy from Amazon
The penultimate season of this no-nonsense police procedural. It's a good show, albeit a little dated, but worth checking out.

Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: Age of Heroes, America in Primetime, Bad Girls, Belle de Jour (Criterion Collection), The Boys in Company C, Citizen Kane: 70th Anniversary Edition, The Coast Guard, The Color Purple, Drive Me Crazy, Dutch, First Squad, Gantz II: Perfect Answer, Georige Gently: Series One, The Josephine Baker Story, License to Drive, Project X, Redline, Taylor Swift: Journey to Fearless, Traffic (Criterion Collection), and The Tuskegee Airmen
There are a lot of secondary Blu-ray releases this week, but I don't think many will get much attention from buyers. Traffic is arguably the best of the group, while there are a lot of mostly forgotten films as the bulk of the releases (Dutch, Drive Me Crazy, License to Drive, etc.).

3D Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: Journey to the Center of the Earth
Just the one 3D release this week. It makes sense that Journey to the Center of the Earth comes out on 3D Blu-ray this week, as the sequel, Journey 2: Mysterious Island his theaters next month.

Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
One of the worst movies ever made. If there's any justice in the world, this film should end careers.

Cold Sweat - Buy from Amazon
This is a horror / thriller that is really hard to described in one or two sentences. (It involves nitroglycerin.) I'm hoping to get a screener for the film, but it hasn't arrived yet.

Courageous - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
Yet another in a long line of films aimed squarely at churchgoers with no room, or concern, to reach outside that target demographic. There's nothing wrong with making a good movie that also has a message; in fact, having a message can make a good movie great. But, only caring about the message will generally result in a terrible movie. Extras are not bad (commentary track, deleted scenes, outtakes, making of featurette, etc.) but unless you are part of the target demographic, there's not a lot here to draw you in.

Debra DiGiovanni: Single Awkward Female - Buy from Amazon
A Canadian stand-up comic. I've seen enough of her work to look forward to seeing this set, but not enough to comment before the screener arrives.

Delocated: Seasons One & Two - Buy from Amazon
The latest Adult Swim show to come out on DVD. This show follows a family that is living under assumed identities after the father testified against the Russian mob and had to enter the Witness protection program. It skewers Reality TV, which is a good target, plus the reviews are good. Finally, there are plenty of extras on the DVD (commentary tracks, deleted scenes, outtakes, and more).

Dirty Girl - Buy from Amazon
Juno Temple stars as the titular dirty girl, who goes on a road trip with another high school outcast to look for her real mother. I hope to get a screener shortly, but I have read quite a bit of praise for her performance.

Division III: Football's Finest - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A Football film written and starring Andy Dick. The reviews are mixed, violently mixed. In short, if you like Andy Dick and low-brow dark humor, then you might enjoy the film. If you dislike Andy Dick, then you should stay far, far away.

Hetalia: World Series 1 Season Three (Limited Edition) - Buy from Amazon
This Anime release is in eighth place on Amazon.com's list of best-selling new releases. That's a sure sign this is a really slow week, as Anime is still very much a niche product.

The Ides of March - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
This film was released early in Awards Season and while it earned excellent reviews and a few nominations, it hasn't quite lived up to expectations. Extras on the DVD include an audio commentary track and some featurettes, while the Blu-ray has some additional featurettes and a Digital Copy of the movie. Worth picking up and a contender for Pick of the Week.

Kevin Hart: Laugh at My Pain - Buy from Amazon
This stand-up concert film earned good reviews, but was great at the box office. There are not a whole lot of extras on the DVD, but these releases rarely have a lot of extras. It's good value for the money and worth picking up if you are a fan of R-rated stand-up in general or of Kevin Hart in particular.

Merlin: Season Three - Buy from Amazon
A look at the King Arthur myth with the main characters as teenagers. It's not a bad show, but it is also not the best take on the legend.

Mysteries of Lisbon - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A six-hour costume drama mini-series that was re-cut for a theatrical release. This is not always a wise move, as it is tough to cut enough so the viewer can get through it in one sitting, while keeping enough of the plot so a viewer won't get lost. Given its reviews, I would say they were successful.

Robin Williams Blu-ray Double-Shot:
Dead Poets Society - Buy from Amazon
Good Morning, Vietnam - Buy from Amazon

Two films from the early days of Robin Williams' box office success. Will those who missed the films the first time around enjoy them? Have they aged well? And are the Blu-rays worth the upgrade? Read our review for my opinion.

Note: This Blu-ray made its home market debut on the 3rd.

Shark Night - Buy from Amazon: DVD, Blu-ray Combo Pack, or Video On Demand
This film failed to find an audience with moviegoers, nor did it find many fans among critics. Is it as bad as its performance would indicate? Or am I one of the dissenting voices? Check out our review to find out.

Sliders: Season Five - Buy from Amazon
This show was excellent for three and a half seasons. By season four, it was already showing its age, while season five should have never happened. This release is for completists only.

Special Treatment - Buy from Amazon
Isabelle Huppert stars as a prostitute who has clients with specific needs. She talks to Bouli Lanners, a therapist, who they discuss the similarities between their professions. The reviews were a little on the weak side. I might be getting a screener to review, so I'm hoping I enjoy it more than most.

Thurgood - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A TV movie starring Laurence Fishburne as Thurgood Marshall. It's not really a movie but a one-man play shot in front of a live audience. The film earned excellent reviews and even picked up a trio of Emmy nominations and it is worth picking up if you are a fan of the actor or want to know more about Thurgood Marshall.

Waking the Dead: Season Six - Buy from Amazon
A British cold case police procedural show. It has earned excellent reviews over its run, but the price-per-minute is high for TV on DVD. That said, this is true of most imports.


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Filed under: Video Releases, Traffic, Good Morning Vietnam, Dead Poets Society, The Color Purple, License to Drive, Project X, Drive Me Crazy, Bad Girls, Dutch, Belle de Jour, Citizen Kane, Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star, Abduction, Dirty Girl, Shark Night 3D, Courageous, The Ides of March, Sans queue ni tete, Misterios de Lisboa, Kevin Hart: Laugh at My Pain, Division III: Football's Finest