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DVD/Blu-ray DISCussion (New for 3.8.11)

Missed the some of this year’s Oscar nominated documentaries? Well you are in luck: Inside Job (which won the award) and Exit Through the Gift Shop, looking the subjects of the banking crisis and underground art are being released and re-released. Both are this week’s big winners with Player Affinity’s staff. But if you are not fan of documentaries there are releases in the fields of comedy, action and anime from the Miyazakis.

First Release
Jackass 3 (DVD and Blu-ray)
Morning Glory (DVD and Blu-ray)
The Next Three Days (DVD and Blu-ray)
Inside Job (DVD and Blu-ray)
Every Day (DVD and Blu-ray)
The Man From Nowhere (DVD and Blu-ray)
Tales of Earthsea (DVD)

Re-Release
Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind 
Exit Through the Gift Shop (Blu-ray)
Excalibur (Blu-ray)
 

Jackass 3 (DVD and Blu-ray)

What’s the Deal?
The Jackass series has never been renowned for its high levels of intellect, but it is extremely popular. After a four-year hiatus Johnny Knoxville and co. return and Jackass 3 was the most successful film of the franchise, with a gross of nearly $170 Million. Shot in 3D, the Jackass folks are older, but not wiser: they continue on their quest of causing themselves and each other pain with they array of near-suicidal stunts. Remember kids, do not try this at home.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 62% (good)
Player Affinity Score: 7.2/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: MTV Making Of Special; Outtakes; Deleted Scenes; Time Magazine Trailer

Amazon Price: $16.99 (Single-Disc DVD), $21.49 (Two-Disc DVD), $22.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): Content: 4.5 stars, Video 4 stars, Audio 4 stars, Extras 3.5 stars, Replay 3.5 stars (out of 5). Highly Recommended.

 Morning Glory (DVD and Blu-ray)

 What’s the Deal?
 Rachel McAdams is clearly an actress on the rise, having major roles in Sherlock Holmes, The Time Traveller’s Wife and State of Play. In 2010, she earned the lead role in Morning Glory, a film that featured Harrison Ford, Diane Keaton, Patrick Wilson (Watchmen) and Jeff Goldblum. As well as the star power in front of the camera, this comedy-drama was written by Aline Brosh McKenna (The Devil Wear’s Prada), directed by Roger Michell (Notting Hill) and produced by the talented J.J. Abrams.

In the competitive world of television, Becky Fuller (McAdams) is an aspiring news producer who loses her job at Good Morning New Jersey. She ends up having to take up the high-risk job as the executive producer at Daybreak, the worst-performing breakfast show in America. To save the show, Becky brings in a respected journalist  named Mike Pomeroy (Ford) as one of the anchors. The problem is refuses to report on “light news” pieces and develops a rivalry with his co-anchor, Colleen Peck (Keaton).

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 54% (average)
Player Affinity Score: 7.0/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Commentary by Director Roger Michell and Writer Aline Brosh McKenna

Additional Blu-ray Special Features: Deleted Scene: Shampoo Bottles HD

Amazon Price: $16.99 (DVD), $22.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): Content: 3.5 stars, Video 4 stars, Audio 4 stars, Extras 2.5 stars, Replay 3.5 stars (out of 5). Recommended.

The Next Three Days (DVD and Blu-ray)

What’s the Deal
Paul Haggis’ third film as a director is a remake of the French thriller, Anything for Her, and it gets Russell Crowe and Elizabeth Banks (Scrubs). Liam Neeson and Olivia Wilde (Tron: Legacy) offer support.

John Brennan (Crowe) is a typical family man whose world is turned upside down when his wife Lara (Banks) is arrested and sentenced for murder. When every route of appeal is exhausted, Lara attempts to kill herself. John has to come up with an ambitious plan to break his wife out of prison and has to explore the criminal underworld and his own dark side to make sure it is successful.

Critic Rating (Rotten Tomatoes):
50% (average)
Player Affinity Score: 5.7/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Making The Next Three Days; The Men of The Next Three Days; True Escapes for Love; Cast Moments; Deleted Scenes; Extended Scenes; Full-Length Bump Key Video

Amazon Price: $14.99 (DVD), $22.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): Content: 3 stars, Video 3.5 stars, Audio 4 stars, Extras 3.5 stars, Replay 3 stars (out of 5). Recommended.

Inside Job (DVD and Blu-ray)

What’s the Deal?
The release of Inside Job onto DVD and Blu-ray could not be more timely, having won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. Directed by Charles Ferguson (No End in Sight) and narrated by Matt Damon, this documentary looks at the 2007-08 financial crisis, starting and ending in Iceland. Ferguson interviews government ministers, bank managers, authors and university academics. He asks tough questions about academics who were paid to justify the system of reckless investment, bad debt and limited regulation.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 98% (excellent)
Player Affinity Score: 7.7/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Commentary with Director Charles Ferguson & Producer Audrey Marrs; The Making of Inside Job

Additional Blu-ray Special Features: Deleted Scenes

Amazon Price: $14.49 (DVD), $17.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): Content: 4 stars, Video 4.5 stars, Audio 4.5 stars, Extras 4 stars, Replay 4 stars (out of 5). Highly Recommended.

Every Day (DVD and Blu-ray)

What’s the Deal?
From his work on Nip/Tuck as writer, director and producer, Richard Levine has stepped into the filmmaking world with Every Day. Levine recruits a decent cast of actors who normally play supporting roles: Liev Schreiber (X-Men Origins: Wolverine), Carla Gugino (Watchmen), Helen Hunt and Eddie Izzard (Valkyrie).

Set in New York, Ned (Schreiber) is a man who is in the middle of a general life crisis: his wife Jeannie (Hunt) is stressed, his son Jonah (Ezra Miller) is growing up and his father (Brain Dennehy) is turning his world on its head. His boss, Garrett (Izzard) is extremely demanding and Ned is forced to work late with a sexy co-writer (Gugino).

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 43% (poor)
Player Affinity Score: N/A

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Cast Interviews; Deleted Scenes; Trailer

Amazon Price: $15.99 (DVD), $16.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

 The Man From  Nowhere (DVD and Blu-ray)

 What’s the Deal?
To me, South Korean cinema is one of the best in the world at the moment. South Korean filmmakers willing to try more inventive stories and  take bigger risks then most Western films would dare. The Man From Nowhere was the highest-grossing film in South Korea in 2010 and a big winner at the Korean Film Awards. Jeong-beom Lee writes and directs his second feature and Won Bin (Brotherhood, Mother) was praised for  his performance.

Tae-Sik Cha (Won) is a lonely ex-government operative whose only connection to the world is a young girl, So-Mo Jeong (Sae-ron Kilm). So-Mo’s mother (Hyo-Jeong) is a drug smuggler stealing from a drug trafficking organisation. When that organisation kidnaps So-Mo and her mother, Tae-Sik is forced into action to save them.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): N/A
Player Affinity Score: N/A

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: “Making Of”; Highlights; Trailers

Amazon Price: $12.99 (DVD), $13.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

Tales of Earthsea (DVD)

What’s the Deal?
Loosely based on the Earthsea series by Ursula K. Le Guin, Tales of Earthsea was the directing debut for Gora Miyazaki, son of the anime legend Hayao Miyazaki. This sword-and-sorcery film tell the story of Prince Arren who is forced into a long voyage with Archmage Ged (or Sparrowhawk in the English version) to stop an evil witch and a horde of dragons from destroying their world.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 40% (poor)
Player Affinity Score: N/A

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: The World Of Ghibli: Visit Earthsea in this enchanted interactive experience; Behind the Studio – Discover the Film’s fantastic origins!; Enter the Lands – Explore the many worlds of Studio Ghibli through this interactive experience; Studio Ghibli Trivia Challenge – Test your knowledge

Amazon Price: $18.99 (DVD)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

 Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (Blu-ray)

 What’s the Deal?
 Hayao Miyazaki is loved by anime fans the world over, making films that include My Neighbour Totoro, Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away and Howl’s Moving Castle. His first film was the environmental tale Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. Set 1000 years after an apocalyptic war, humanity is struggling and divided and living near a toxic forest. The only hope is the warrior Princess Nausicaa who has to unite her people against an evil queen.

The dubbed version sees the likes of Alison Lohman, Uma Thurman, Patrick Stewart and Shia LaBeouf providing the voices. Whether this is good or bad is very debatable.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 100% (excellent)
Player Affinity Score: N/A

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: BD: World Of Ghibli: Visit Nausicaa’s world in this enchanted interactive experience; Behind The Studio: Discover the film’s fantastic origins in this fascinating documentary, including an interview with Hayao Miyazaki!; Enter the Lands: Explore the many worlds of Studio Ghibli through this interactive map!; Studio Ghibli Trivia Challenge: You’re your Knowledge; Original Japanese storyboards; DVD: Behind the Microphone: With A-List Voice Talent; The Birth Story Of Studio Ghibli Featurette; Original TV trailers

Amazon Price: $24.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

 Exit Through the Gift Shop (Blu-ray)

 What’s the Deal?
 Banksy is a famous graffiti artist, offering satirical swipes at big business, poverty and especially government. He has now taken on documentary filmmaking and the Blu-ray re-release comes on the back of an Oscar nod. Originally directed by Frenchman Thierry Guetta, Exit Through the Gift Shop starts with Guetta looking for Banksy and reporting on one of his major exhibitions. But Banksy was able to turn the tables on Guetta and convinced him to have his own art exhibition, despite a lack of talent. I personally wanted Banksy to win the Oscar for two reasons: local pride because I used to live in Bristol and just to see what his acceptance speech would have been like.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 98% (excellent)
Player Affinity Score: 8.6/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: B Movie – An Exclusive film about the ‘art’ of Bansky; Deleted Scenes; Life Remote Control (Lawyer’s Edit)

Amazon Price: $29.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

Excalibur (Blu-ray)

What’s the Deal?
Last but not least is John Boorman’s (Deliverance) take on the King Arthur legend. Nigel Terry (The Lion in Winter), Helen Mirren and Nicol Williamson (Return to Oz) star in this film taking the legend back to its roots and providing early roles for Gabriel Byrne and Liam Neeson.

Terry plays Arthur in this film that looks at how Arthur became King, founded the Knights of the Round Table, had an illegitimate son, his relationship with Guinevere (Cherie Lunghi) and his downfall. Arthur sets out on quests and there is a constant battle between the wizard Merlin (Williamson) and evil sorceress Morgana (Mirren).

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 81% (very good)
Player Affinity Score: N/A

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: N/A

Amazon Price: $13.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

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