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DVD and Blu-ray Releases for September 28th, 2010

September 27th, 2010

Like many retail businesses, the home market does most of its sales in the last quarter of the year. And while technically the fourth quarter doesn't begin until October, like any good business, the movie industry tries to extend its prime business season as long as possible, which explains why Iron Man 2 is coming out this week instead of next. Unfortunately, that screener is late and I won't be able to review it. (In fact, its one of those weeks where it seems more screeners are late than arrived on time.) There were plenty of other DVDs / Blu-rays that came out this week, but the presence of Iron Man 2 did scare away a lot of prime competition, so much so that I'm awarding it the Pick of the Week, specifically the Blu-ray / DVD / Digital Copy Combo Pack edition.

The 25th Anniversary Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Concerts - Buy from Amazon
A three-disc, five-hour special that includes dozens of performances by countless Hall of Famers. If you saw the concert on HBO last year, this is a great way to re-live it. If not, it's still worth picking up if you are a fan of Bruce Springsteen, Paul Simon, Sting, Aretha Franklin, U2, B.B. King, Annie Lennox, Lou Reed, and so on, and so on, and so on.

Note: This Blu-ray made its home market debut on the 14th.

Amityville Horror - Blu-ray - Buy from Amazon
The first of four Blu-rays that arrived late this week. This was actually the biggest hit at the box office, at least in terms of raw dollars. But is it worth picking up? Or at the very least, checking out? Read our review to find out.

Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations: Collection 5, Part 1 - Buy from Amazon
Great show, plus the 3-disc set has extras, which is not that common for a Discovery Channel show. However... Collection 5, Part 1? This is either Season 5, Part 1, or it is a collection of episodes. Can't be both.

Astonishing X-Men: Gifted - Buy from Amazon
The Eisner Award winning six-episode run that was written by Joss Whedon turned into a Motion Comic. Obviously the story is worth checking out, but how well does it work in the relatively new medium of the Motion Comic? Read our review for my opinion.

Babies - Buy from Amazon DVD or Buy from Amazon
After a string of documentary hits at the box office, more and more studios tried to jump on the bandwagon. However, it appears that mainstream hits will still be the exception and not the rule for the genre. It doesn't help that this film only earned good reviews and not great reviews with many critics calling it a glorified home movie and not a documentary with any real insight. Worst still, there are almost no extras on the DVD / Blu-ray, which further limits replay value. For most people interested in the film, a rental will be enough.

Battle 360: The Complete Series - Blu-ray - Buy from Amazon
Combining archival footage, brand new interviews, and computer animation to create a unique look at the World War II. But is unique good? And does it shine on Blu-ray? Check out our review for my opinion.

Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: Babies, Battle 360, Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky, Frozen, Get Him to the Greek, Good, Hero, Iron Man 2 (Single-Disc Blu-ray), Iron Man 2 (DVD/Blu-ray Combo Pack), The Killer Inside Me, King Kong, Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence, Patton 360, Prey, The Private Eyes, Rock 'n' Rule, Rush: Classic Albums: 2112 & Moving Pictures, Suck, Superman / Batman: Apocalypse (Single-Disc Blu-ray), Superman / Batman: Apocalypse (Two-Disc Blu-ray), and The Thing Red Line
The Blu-ray releases this week are dominated by Iron Man 2, which should surprise non one. There are several other Blu-ray releases of note, including Get Him to the Greek, Rock & Rule, Rush, etc. However, there will likely be a very large gap between the number one selling Blu-ray and number two.

The Cleveland Show: Season One - Buy from Amazon
The latest Seth MacFarlane show is entering the realm of self-parody. It's not a bad show, but it is far too similar to his other shows, while merely being average in terms of humor.

Coco Chanel and Igor Stravinsky - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A period piece about the romance between Coco Chanel and Igor Stravinsky. The film earned only mixed reviews while it did manage to bring in more than $1 million during its limited release run. The lack of substantial extras (there's just a making of featurette) further reduces the value of the DVD / Blu-ray. If you are a fan of the genre, it's worth checking out, but a rental will be enough.

CSI: Season 10 - Buy from Amazon
Good show, but why the hell is this season so expensive? Maybe after the screener arrives the answer to that will be clear.

Dark Night Of The Scarecrow - Buy from Amazon
A TV movie about vigilante justice gone wrong. A young white girl is attacked and the people in her town assume it was the mentally challenged black man that is her friend that was responsible. Trying to avoid getting shot, he hides in a field disguised as a scarecrow, but this doesn't save his life. Later, after the truth is learned about what really happened to the girl, someone starts killing the members of the vigilante mob. Not only is this a TV movie, but it is a TV movie that is nearly 30 years old, so expectations should be kept low. On the other hand, it is the first horror film to feature a scarecrow in this way, so it does fill an important part in the history of that genre.

Ellery Queen Mysteries - Buy from Amazon
This murder mystery series only ran for one season in the mid-1970s, but it is one of the best selling releases of the week. (At least according to Amazon.) The show starred Jim Hutton as Ellery Queen, a New York City police detective we follow as he solves the crimes, while John Hillerman stars as his nemesis always looking to upstage him. With a format that encourages people to play along at home, it has more value on DVD than many such shows and it is worth picking up for fans of the genre.

Family Guy: Partial Terms of Endearment - Buy from Amazon
This DVD features an episode that was too much for TV, plus a lot of extras. Is the episode worth watching and do the extras make this DVD worth picking up? Won't know till the screener arrives.

Frozen - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Buy from Amazon
Three friends go to the ski hill for some fun,but when they decide to sneak one more run in, they get stuck on the ski lift. That's a pretty simple setup, but in many ways that's exactly what you want when it comes to horror. The critical response was good, but not great. I won't know on which side I fall till after the screener arrives, which will hopefully be soon.

Get Him to the Greek - Buy from Amazon: Single-Disc DVD, Two-Disc DVD, Blu-ray
This Spin-off to Sarah Marshall earned good reviews but never managed to become anything more than a midlevel hit. It should do better on the home market, but I won't know if it is worth a rental or a purchase till after the screener arrives.

Good - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
Viggo Mortensen stars as John Halderm a writer / professor whose works are popular among the Nazi elite leading up to World War II. He understands that to rise in his profession, he has to join the Nazi party, which doesn't sit well with his Jewish friend, Maurice. The film is based on an amazing play, but the end results here are less impressive. The message is still important, but the execution leaves a lot to be desired. Still, worth checking out.

Iron Man 2 - Buy from Amazon: Single-Disc DVD, Two-Disc DVD, Two-Disc Blu-ray, or Blu-ray / DVD / Digital Copy Combo Pack
The reviews were not as good this time around as they were the first time around, but 74% positive is still excellent for a summer blockbuster. I'm not saying all summer blockbusters are bad, but the term "Popcorn Flick" is rarely used as a compliment, but more of an excuse. A full set of extras would make this a clear contender for Pick of the Week. Sadly, the screener is late, so I can't tell if there are a full set of extras. Hopefully it will arrive soon.

Note: This Blu-ray made its home market debut on the 14th.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers - Blu-ray - Buy from Amazon
The second of the quartet of late Blu-rays. This one is the oldest, and the best, but does the Blu-ray do it justice? Read our review to find out.

The Killer Inside Me - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A good director plus some big names helped this film overcome mixed reviews when it opened in limited release. At least for one weekend. The extras on the DVD / Blu-ray are just a trio of short interviews with the three main cast members, which limits its value to a rental, and that's only if you are not of the faint of heart.

Legend of the Seeker: The Complete Second Season - Buy from Amazon
I reviewed the previous season, but I'm waiting on the screener for the second and final season.

Let's Hear It For The Laurie Berkner Band - Buy from Amazon
The multi-platinum kids band, The Laurie Berkner Band, are back with a new DVD. Will fans and newcomers alike want to pick it up. Read our review to find ou.

Midsomer Murders: Set 16 - Buy from Amazon
The latest release for this British murder mystery show suffers from many of the same faults as the previous releases. Firstly, its price is high for a TV on DVD release, while there are not a lot of extras (audio commentary track on one episode). On the other hand, if you treat them as TV movies, it's not a bad deal.

Note: This Blu-ray made its home market debut on the 14th.

The Order - Blu-ray - Buy from Amazon
Arguably the low point of Heath Ledger's career, both in terms of box office and in critical reception. However, have the years been kind to the film and is it worth a second look? Check out our review to find out.

Patton 360: Season One - Blu-ray - Buy from Amazon
The follow-up to Battle 360 gets the same Blu-ray treatment this week. But is it worth the upgrade? Read our review to find out.

Note: This Blu-ray made its home market debut on the 14th.

The Return of the Living Dead - Blu-ray - Buy from Amazon
The last of the late Blu-rays for the week. And it's an MGM Blu-ray that doesn't suck. The studio has been releasing a lot of Blu-rays recently, but even when the film itself is awesome, they tend to bungle the Blu-ray release. So how is this one different? Check out our review to find out.

Rich Man, Poor Man: The Complete Collection - Buy from Amazon
One of the first TV miniseries ever to appear on American TV, and arguably the first success. This nine-disc set includes all 34 chapters from both books and has a running time of just over a day. It's impossible to complain about the price-per-minute on this DVD. There are not a lot of extras, but the very first chapter does have an audio commentary track.

Rush: Classic Albums: 2112 & Moving Pictures - Buy from Amazon: DVD, Blu-ray, and CD/DVD/Blu-ray
A documentary look at the creation of the two of the greatest albums in the history of the musical note. And I'm not just saying that because Rush is Canadian, although that helps.

Saturday Night Live: The Best Of... - Eddie Murphy and Adam Sandler
Two more Best Ofs are being released this week, featuring Eddie Murphy and Adam Sandler, each with a little bit of bonus material. However, do they really represent the best of their respective careers? And are they worth upgrading to, or at least picking up? Check out our review for Eddie Murphy here and Adam Sanlder here to find out.

Secret Agent AKA Danger Man: The Complete Collection - Buy from Amazon
This show has been released on DVD a couple times now. There's nothing new with the latest edition, other than the packaging and the price, both of which are smaller. So if you have the previous Megaset, there's no reason to buy this one. However, if you missed the show the first time around, is it worth picking up now? Read our review for my opinion.

Scrubs: Season Nine - Buy from Amazon
I've been able to review the last few seasons of this show, which for many years was my favorite on TV. Now that it has ended, was it able to go out on a high note? Check out our review for my opinion.

South Park: A Little Box of Butters - Buy from Amazon
Still waiting on the screener for this DVD, which contains more than a dozen episodes and some physical extras.

Suck - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
An Indie band is struggling to make it in the industry when one of their members, Jessica Pare, is bitten by a vampire and transformed. I've heard some talk that the film has cult potential, but I won't know for myself to the screener arrives.

Superman/Batman: Apocalypse - Buy from Amazon: Single-Disc DVD, Two-Disc DVD, Single-Disc DVD, or Two-Disc Blu-ray
The latest D.C.Comics direct-to-DVD release has Superman and Batman teaming up to rescue a Kryptonion that has been kidnapped by Darkseid. D.C. Has put out a large number of these releases, and while the quality level has been mixed at times, most are worth picking up.


Filed under: Video Releases, Good, Coco Chanel and Igor Stravinsky, Get Him to the Greek, Iron Man 2, Prey, Babies, Frozen, The Killer Inside Me, Suck