DVD and Blu-ray Releases for October 23rd, 2012

There are not a lot of major releases on this week's list. The biggest box office hit was Magic Mike, which did cross $100 million, but I'm not sure its target audience is going to support it on DVD and especially not on Blu-ray Combo Pack. According to Amazon.com, Tinker Bell: Secret of the Wings is the best selling new release, and the DVD, Blu-ray Combo Pack, and 3D Combo Pack are selling very well. However, while that film is absolutely worth picking up, the Pick of the Week goes to The Invisible War on DVD. It could be an Oscar winner next year.

247 Degrees Fahrenheit - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
Three friends up up stuck in a sauna and need to get out before the temperature reaches 247 degrees Fahrenheit when they die. That's not much of a setup. Scout Taylor-Compton stars and she's gotten some praise for her performance, but most critics are complaining that there's just not enough here to justify a 90-minute movie.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter - Buy from Amazon: DVD, Blu-ray Combo Pack, or 3D Combo Pack
This film earned weak reviews and if you've read the book, you will likely hate the movie even more. Extras are not bad with an audio commentary track, making of featurette, comic book, and music video. Call it a rental, but no more.

Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: Agatha Christie's Poirot: The Early Cases, The Ambassador, American Pie Box Set, Aria: The Scarlet Ammo, Athena Goddess of War, Blade Runner: 30th Anniversary Edition, Blade Runner: 30th Anniversary Collector's Edition, Casino Royale, Fear & Desire, Majikoi: Oh! Samurai Girl - The Complete Collection, The Penalty, Quantum Solace, and Sunday Bloody Sunday (The Criterion Collection)
First of all, Blade Runner is an awesome movie, but do we need another box set? I guess five years is an eternity given the size of the Blu-ray market in 2007. Fear and Desire is probably the best of the secondary releases.

3D Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, I, Robot, Safari Africa Double-Feature, and Tinker Bell: Secret of the Wings
Four 3D films coming out this week, including a first-run release, a post-production conversion, a direct-to-DVD release, and a double-feature double-dip.

Note: This DVD made its home market debut on the 16th.

Christmas Miracle - Buy from Amazon
The first of two films that arrived a day late to make it into last week's list. It's a family friendly Christmas movie aimed at churchgoers, which is good if you want to watch something and not offend anyone in this target audience. But will it also entertain them? Read our review for my opinion.

Christmas Releases - Buy from Amazon: Bloody Christmas, Christmas Angel, Family Holiday Collection, Franklin: Franklins Magic Christmas, and Holiday Collection
A rather weak list of Christmas releases and nothing stands out as a first-tier release, or even a second-tier release.

Crooked Arrows - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
An inspirational sports movie that earned weak reviews, but did quite well in limited release. Extras are better than expected with an audio commentary track and a few featurettes, but even if you are a fan of the genre, I would still stick with just a rental.

The Devil's Carnival: Ringmaster Edition - Buy Direct
A pseudo-sequel to Repo! The Genetic Opera, which I loved, but I'm in the minority here. The Blu-ray has a commentary track, a trio of featurettes, booklet, and more. It is expensive, but it is a limited edition. I pre-ordered it, but I also like strange movies.

Fantasy Island: The Complete Third Season - Buy from Amazon
A show based on stunt casting. If it weren't for shows like this and The Love Boat, there would have been many actors who didn't get any roles in the 1970s and 1980s. There are some serious nostalgia issues attached with this show, so for those who grew up with it, a rental might be nescessary.

The Fugitive: Most Wanted Edition - Buy from Amazon
I've reviewed most of the previous DVD releases in this franchise, but does the Megaset offer any incentive to buy, outside of the cool box? Read our review to find out.

Happy Endings: Season Two - Buy from Amazon
Still waiting for the screener for this show. It has earned mostly good reviews, but the ratings have been on the weak side.

The Invisible War - Buy from Amazon
Hopefully this documentary earns an Oscar nomination, because it deserves it. It also tackles a difficult subject, which should further help its chances during Awards Season. Extras include an audio commentary track, extended interviews / deleted scenes, Q&A, and more. It's a must have.

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: Season 8 - Buy from Amazon
Great show, weak DVD releases.

Lost Girl: Season One - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A Canadian show about a woman, Bo (Anna Silk), who learns she is a succubus. The show has earned good reviews and Ksenia Solo even won a Gemini for her supporting performance. There are not a lot of extras, on the other hand, so I can't be too enthusiastic with my recommendation.

Note: This Blu-ray made its home market debut on the 16th.

Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted - Buy from Amazon: DVD, Blu-ray Combo Pack, or 3D Combo Pack
The screener for this film arrived a little too late to get onto last week's column. The film earned the best reviews in the franchise thus far. Do I agree with the rest of the critics? Check out our review to find out.

Magic Mike - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
This film earned surprisingly strong reviews and was a surprise $100 million hit. Unfortunately, despite this success, the extras are really weak. The DVD just has a seven-minute behind-the-scenes featurette, while the Blu-ray has extended dance and a collection of the dance scenes. (I guess they know their target audience.) It is still worth picking up, but if there were a full set of extras, it could have been a Pick of the Week contender.

Naruto Shippuden: The Movie - The Will of Fire - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
One of the more popular Anime franchise, especially in this market. It is still too much of a niche market release to get reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, on the other hand.

Perry Mason: Season Seven, Volume Two - Buy from Amazon
Great show. The screener just showed up and I will get to the review ASAP.

Puppet Master X: Axis Rising - Buy from Amazon
A B-movie franchise that has been around for a long, long time. It was never high art and this installment is earning mostly good reviews from genre critics, mostly. If you are a fan of the franchise, it might be worth checking out.

Seeking a Friend for the End of the World - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
This film earned mixed reviews, but it bombed hard. Despite this, there are better than expected extras, including an audio commentary track, deleted scenes, making of featurette, and a featurette about the perfect music for the end of the world. It's worth picking up.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Season Four - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
The Star Wars animated series continues. The overall reviews have been mostly good, but it is aimed at a younger audience than the movies were. Extras on the DVD and Blu-ray include five audio commentary tracks, while the Blu-ray also has Jedi Temple Archives, which focuses on the artwork from the show (early tests, 3D models, etc.). Worth picking up.

Take This Waltz - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
I was hoping to get a screener for this film to review. If it is on its way, it is late. The reviews are very good, but the extras are weak. It's worth checking out for most, picking up for many.

Through The Wormhole With Morgan Freeman: Season 3 - Buy from Amazon
A great show that delves into some pretty cool topics. And of course Morgan Freeman is awesome in practically everything he does.

Tinker Bell: Secret of the Wings - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack, or 3D Combo Pack
The fourth direct-to-DVD release in the Tinker Bell franchise. The first film was surprisingly good, but has franchise fatigue set in? Or are these films still worth picking up? Read our review to find out.

TV on DVD Megasets - Buy from Amazon: Peter Gunn or Sanctuary
I'm hoping to get Sanctuary to review, as it was a great show, while it lasted. Peter Gunn is admittedly before my time. Awesome theme song.

Tyler Perry's Madeas Witness Protection - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
It's a Madea movie. Either you are a fan of the character and want to buy the film, or you have already stopped reading and moved on. Although, even if you are a fan, the quality is down from previous releases, while the extras are nearly non-existent. Even for most fans, a rental will be enough. Also coming out this week is Tyler Perry's I Don't Want to Do Wrong - The Play and Meet the Browns: Season Seven.

Universal Monsters Coffin Box Collection - Buy from Amazon
Eight classic films from arguably the golden age of movie monsters on Blu-ray. It includes a lot of physical extras, including a cool box. The price is solid and it would make a great gift. The films are also being released individually, but stick with the box set. You get better extras and it is a much better price.

Upstairs Downstairs: Season 2 - Buy from Amazon
The remake of this series earned reviews that were almost as good as the original. However, after a strong start during its first season, the second season took a tumble in ratings and was canceled after the second season concluded. Fans will obviously be upset by its demise, but at least they can complete their collection on the home market this week.

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

VR Troopers: Season One, Volume One - Buy from Amazon
One of about a dozen Power Rangers clones to come out in the 1990s. Is this one better than most? Or should you stick to the original? Check out our review for my opinion.

Wrong Turn 5: Bloodlines - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
This is a franchise that has gone on way too long.


- C.S.Strowbridge


Date posted: 2012-10-23