|As an Actor||Documentary Subject||1||$0||$0||$0|
|In Technical Roles||Director||7||$37,426,726||$948,924,853||$986,351,579|
|Best known as a Director based on credits in that role in 7 films, with $986,351,579 worldwide aggregate box office (rank #147)|
|Best-Known Technical Roles: The Secret World of Arietty (Screenwriter), Gake no ue no Ponyo (Director), Gake no ue no Ponyo (Screenwriter), Gake no ue no Ponyo (Producer), Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi (Director)|
|Most productive collaborators: Toshio Suzuki, Hiromasa Yonebayashi, Bridgit Mendler, Frank Marshall, Amy Poehler|
2015 - Holiday Gift Guide - Part III - Limited Releases, Foreign Films, Classics, and Canadian Films
December 13th, 2015
The third installment of the Holiday Gift Guide focuses on smaller releases, movies that opened in limited release, foreign films, classics getting new releases, and a few Canadian films. This year the list looks different to the previous guides for a simple reason. While there were only eight releases on the TV on DVD installment of the holiday gift guide, the first pass had more than 30 films on this list. I tried trimming the list, but that resulted in me remembering more films I wanted to add to it. Even after getting rid of the ones that won't be released until after Christmas, like Bone Tomahawk, there are still way too many releases to deal with. So let's not delay anymore and get to the list, starting with the biggest release...
November 17th, 2015
It's an off week of sorts. The biggest release is extended edition of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. In fact, there are five versions of this film that are near the top of the list. There are not a lot of other first-run releases on this week's list, which means we have to look to the classics for potential Pick of the Week contenders. Fortunately, there are plenty of those worth picking up. Leading the way is The Collected Works of Hayao Miyazaki on Blu-ray. It is expensive, but you get a lot for your money. There is another top-notch release this week, Rush - R40 Live on DVD or Blu-ray, which wins the coveted Puck of the Week for best Canadian release.
June 23rd, 2015
As I've mentioned countless times in the past, the summer is the worst time of year for the home market. Outside of an occasional spring hit, there's very little worth talking about. It's much too late for last year's holiday hits, it's much too early for the summer blockbusters, and there are not even a lot of TV on DVD releases to pick up the slack. However, as bad as the average is, this week is much, much worse. There are no first-run releases of note. There's no real limited releases, TV on DVD releases, or classics coming out either. I had nothing to review this week. The top contender for Pick of the Week is Ex Machina, which is only coming out on Video on Demand. It's that slow on the home market. The other two contenders are Lupin the Third: The Castle of Cagliostro on Blu-ray and Timbuktu on Blu-ray.
June 16th, 2015
This week we have two Studio Ghibli films making their Blu-ray debuts. The first, Spirited Away, is one of their best-known movies. The other, The Cat Returns, is not. Fans of the studio will obviously want to pick up both of these Blu-rays, but will they have appeal beyond the hardcore fans?
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.
December 13th, 2014
The third installment of our annual Holiday Gift Guide involves limited releases, including foreign films and documentaries; classics hitting DVD or Blu-ray for the first time; and of course Canadian films. There were better choices for the limited releases than there were for big releases and TV on DVD releases, which is good news, because this Holiday Gift Guide feels that it ahs been lackluster so far. There have been many great limited releases to come out this year, including several foreign-language films to find some measure of mainstream success. On the downside, every year a lot of these movies hit theaters in the fall, so they won't hit the home market for months. That said, there are still some real highlights among the limited releases, classics, and Canadian films. In fact, we start off with the highest of the highlights for the entire year.
November 28th, 2014
It isn't a terribly busy week for limited releases, but there are a few earning great reviews. The Babadook is earning the best reviews on this week's list, but it is a horror film, so its box office chances are minimal. The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness is also earning excellent reviews, but documentaries rarely find an audience outside of art house theaters. That leaves The Imitation Game as the likely winner on the Per Theater Chart.
November 19th, 2014
There are no summer tentpole releases making their home market debuts this week, but that doesn't mean it is a bad week on the home market. 22 Jump Street is leading the way, while there are four other first run releases among the new releases, ranging from If I Stay to Sin City: A Dame to Kill For in terms of box office numbers. Not only that, but this week there are a trio of Hayao Miyazak releases, including his more recent film, The Wind Rises, which is coming out on DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack. That film, along with the double-shot, are the Picks of the Week. However, they are not the only films worth picking up. If you like horror / comedy, give Housebound on DVD or Blu-ray a try.
Featured Blu-ray Review: Hayao Miyazak Blu-ray Double-Shot: Kiki's Delivery Service and Princess Mononoke
November 18th, 2014
To coincide with the home market release of The Wind Rises, two other Hayao Miyazak films are making their debut on Blu-ray this week. I've combined these reviews into one, partially because I've already reviewed one of the movies. Are they worth picking up? Are they worth the double-dip?
November 17th, 2014
Hayao Miyazak has retired a number of times in the past and he keeps coming back. That said, this time he swears that The Wind Rises is his last film. If so, did he go out on a high note? And is the Blu-ray worth picking up for his fans here?
February 21st, 2014
It's a busy week on the limited release front, not only in terms of the number of films, but also in terms of the theater counts for some of them. There are several movies opening in more than a dozen theaters. This includes The Wind Rises, which is the highest profile film of the week and its reviews are living up to its buzz. However, Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me and Child's Pose are earning even better reviews and could find an audience in limited release.
February 15th, 2014
With our annual Oscar Prediction contest underway, now is the best time to look at the nominees and try and figure out who the favorites are and which films should just feel honored to be nominated. Today we look at Best Animated Feature Film, which looked like it would be competitive for most of the year, then Frozen came out and instantly became the favorite. Is it the favorite? Or is there a dark horse out there?
January 13th, 2014
Hollywood Foreign Press Association handed out the Golden Globe awards last night, and there were a few surprises in the mix. American Hustle led the way with three wins, which isn't a real surprise, but I think many thought another film would lead with three or more wins. The only other film to earn more than one award was Dallas Buyers Club at just two. That might give you a hint at what the big surprise was.
September 2nd, 2013
From Up on Poppy Hill is the latest film from Studio Ghibli to reach our shores. The film opened in limited release earlier this year and became the first film released by GKIDS to cross $1 million. Can the film live up to Studio Ghibli's previous films? If not, is it still good in its own regard?
June 24th, 2013
It's summer time. Long time readers know what that means for the home market. It's bad news. There are a couple of first-run releases to come out: The Call and The Incredible Burt Wonderstone. The former was a solid midlevel hit earning more than $50 million on a $13 million budget. The latter bombed. Neither one is a contender for Pick of the Week. There are a couple limited releases that might rise to that level, but I think the best release is Todd & the Book of Pure Evil: The Complete Second Season on DVD. Unfortunately, the screener arrived late so I haven't had a chance to review it, and I hate handing out that honor when till after I give the screener a full review. Fortunately, there is a screener that arrived late that is worth that honor: My Neighbor Totoro on Blu-ray.
June 19th, 2013
Hayao Miyazaki is one of the best animators working today, if not they best. He's created a number of masterpieces and even his weaker efforts are worth watching again and again. Recently two of his films were released on Blu-ray, Howl's Moving Castle and My Neighbor Totoro. The screeners arrived a little late, but I finally got to the reviews this week. Where do they fit in Hayao Miyazaki's filmography? And are they worth picking up?
May 23rd, 2013
It's an abridged list of DVD and Blu-ray releases report this week due to technical difficulties. The best selling new release of the week is True Blood: The Complete Fifth Season on Blu-ray Combo Pack, which is certainly worth owning for fans. However, the best releases are the Hayao Miyazaki Double-Shot, Howl's Moving Castle on Blu-ray Combo Pack and My Neighbor Totoro on Blu-ray Combo Pack. Most prefer the former, but I prefer the latter.
March 15th, 2013
It is a pretty busy week for limited releases with a number of them that could do well. Blancanieves should do well in art house cinemas, but it is too out there for mainstream success. Likewise, From Up on Poppy Hill should draw in fans of Anime, but there are not enough of them to allow the film to expand significantly. Ginger and Rosa has more appeal to mainstream audiences and strong buzz, but its reviews are only good and not great. Spring Breakers is also earning reviews that are good, but not great. However, it has a planned wide opening next week, so unless that falls apart, it will be the biggest hit on this week's list.
|11/28/2014||Yume to kyoki no ohkoku||Himself||$0||$0||$0|
|1/1/2016||Omohide poro poro||Executive Producer||$453,241||$62,076||$515,317|
|2/17/2012||The Secret World of Arietty||Screenwriter||$19,192,510||$129,000,000||$148,192,510|
|8/13/2010||Gedo Senki (Tales from Earthsea)||Story Creator||$48,658||$68,000,000||$68,048,658|
|8/14/2009||Gake no ue no Ponyo||Director,|
Producer - English Dub,
|6/10/2005||Hauru no ugoku shiro||Director||$4,710,455||$233,103,872||$237,814,327|
|9/20/2002||Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi||Screenwriter,|
|3/5/1996||Tonari no Totoro||Director||$0||$0||$0|
|12/31/1979||Lupin the Thrid: The Castle of …||Director||$0||$0||$0|