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Home Market Releases for January 12th, 2016

January 12th, 2016

David Bowie: Blackstar

It is a busy week for first run releases with four of them on this week's list. Of these, The Martian is the biggest and the best. It would have been the Pick of the Week except for two things. One, the screener is late. Two, David Bowie passed away over the weekend. He died after an 18-month battle with cancer and just two days after his last album came out. This is the the most poignant Rock'n'Roll death since Freddie Mercury and it seems fitting to give Blackstar the title of Pick of the Week.

3D Blu-ray Releases - Buy from Amazon: Hotel Transylvania 2 and Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension
Two first-run releases coming out on 3D Blu-ray this week. Of the two, Hotel Transylvania 2 is the much better movie.

The Devil Wears Prada: Tenth Anniversary Edition - Buy from Amazon: Blu-ray
I might get a screener for this film, but so far it is late. The reviews are strong and I remember liking it when I first saw it, but that was nearly ten years ago. Hopefully it has aged well.

Hallmark Channel Movie Double-Shot - Buy from Amazon: All of My Heart and So You Said Yes
Two romances from the Hallmark Channel. That's all I need to say for most people to judge if they are in the target audience or not.

Hotel Transylvania 2 - Buy from Amazon: DVD, Blu-ray Combo Pack, or 3D Combo Pack
Video on Demand
The first film film only managed mixed reviews, but was a massive hit at the box office, so there's no surprise there was a sequel. Was the sequel better than the first film? Will adults enjoy it as much as their kids? Read our review to find out.

Howl - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
A group of passengers on a stranded train get attacked by a werewolf. The reviews are good for the genre, so fans of these movies will want to check it out. That's not an enthusiastic recommendation, on the other hand.

Irrational Man - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
Video on Demand
One of Woody Allen's weaker efforts. Additionally, there are almost no extras. If you are a huge Woody Allen fan, then it is worth checking out, but a rental will be enough.

The Look of Silence - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
Video on Demand
A documentary about the Indonesian Genocide, specifically the family member of one victim confronting the people who killed his brother. The reviews are stellar, but I'm still waiting for the screener to arrive. The extras on the DVD and Blu-ray are better than most documentaries get and include an audio commentary track, Q&A Session, a look at its Indonesian premiere, and more. The three featurettes are roughly the same length as the movie. It could win the Oscar this year and it is a contender for Pick of the Week.

The Looking Glass - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
Grace Tarnow stars as Julie, a 13-year old girl who moves in with her grandmother after her mother dies. She's not excited, neither is her grandmother, Karen, who is dealing with the early stages of Alzheimer. However, when Karen hears Julie sing, she tries to help her find her voice. The reviews are good, but not great, and it bombed in limited release. Hopefully it will find an audience on the home market.

The Martian - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
Video on Demand
It's on its way. It should get here by the weekend. I'll review it A.S.A.P. I suspect it will be the pick of the week when I do get a chance to review it. On the other hand, it is not a comedy and I'm annoyed it won two Golden Globes for Comedy / Musical categories. Not only is this gaming the system, it reinforces the idea that Science Fiction movies aren't serious filmmaking and shouldn't be treated the same as dramas.

Mr. Robot: Season One - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
Video on Demand
One of the best new shows of last year. It even picked up two Golden Globe wins over the weekend, including a win for Christian Slater. Extras are merely okay with a making of featurette, deleted scenes, and outtakes. Had it had some audio commentary tracks, it would have been the Pick of the Week. It is still a contender for that title.

Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension - Buy from Amazon: DVD or 3D Blu-ray Combo Pack
I've reviewed every other installment in this franchise, but I have grown tired of these movies and the reviews for this film were terrible.

The Second Mother - Buy from Amazon: DVD
Video on Demand
This is a Brazilian film about a live-in housekeeper who is like a second mother to the child of her rich employers. When the housekeeper's own daughter stays with the family the balance of both families is upset. The reviews are excellent and it did very well in limited release, for a foreign-language film. It is certainly worth checking out and even a contender for pick of the Week.

Sherlock: The Abominable Bride - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack
A TV movie that was released in theaters in a few markets. The reviews were mixed and I think it will be released as part of a full-season set later on, so you might want to wait and save some money.

Sinister 2 - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
I liked the first movie, but the reviews for this film were terrible, so I didn't grab a screener when I had the chance. Extras are good, but there are just too many better options out there.

The Stanford Prison Experiment - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray
Video on Demand
This is a good movie, even if you realize the experiment that is the basis for the movie was poorly conducted and the results are often overstated.

Video on Demand - Buy from Amazon: All Things Must Pass, Black Mass, Burnt, Friend Request, Funny Bunny, Goosebumps, Hate Crimes in the Heartland, Keith Robinson - Back of the Bus Funny, The Last Witch Hunter, Little Terrors, Moonwalkers, The Submarine Kid, and Sympathy, Said the Shark
There are a number of VOD releases this week for films that are coming out on DVD and Blu-ray at a later date. Of these, Black Mass is the best, but Goosebumps feels like the better rental. Of the smaller releases, Moonwalkers is the one I'm most interested in.

The Wonder Years: Season 4 - Buy from Amazon: DVD
Buying the show on an individual season basis is cheaper than buying the box set, but you don't get as many extras.

Filed under: Video Releases, The Stanford Prison Experiment, Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension, Hotel Transylvania 2, Goosebumps, The Martian, Black Mass, Sinister 2, The Look of Silence, Irrational Man, Que Horas Ela Volta?, Moonwalkers, Howl, The Looking Glass, Paranormal Activity, Woody Allen, David Bowie, Christian Slater, Dorothy Tristan, Grace Tarnow