Best Home Video Releases of 2013
We here at Entertainment Fuse are celebrating a fantastic 2013, by highlighting some of the best releases on DVD and Blu-Ray. There were plenty of things to choose from, but here are our staff picks for home video releases!
Melisa's Pick: Criterion's Francis Ha (DVD/Blu-Ray Combo Pack)
This is a film whose beautiful black and white aesthetic just worked really well on screen. I'm over the moon happy to hear that Criterion decided to give it the special treatment. $30 will get you a Blu-Ray/DVD combo whose special features include interviews with the director and cinematographer, an interview between Sarah Polley and Greta Gerwig, the film's trailer and a booklet. While its a little light on features, the superior image and sound quality that Criterion placed in its release ensures that cinephiles will view this as a win-win.
Ruben's Pick: Criterion's Zatoichi: The Blind Swordsman Boxed Set (DVD/Blu-Ray Combo)
This boxed set is not only the most epic release of Zatoichi ever, but quite possibly the most ambitious release that The Criterion Collection has ever put together. Containing 25 films, which star Shintaro Katsu as the blind swordsman, this beautiful boxed set contains beautiful artwork for each of the films by different graphic artists, an essay by film critic Geoffrey O'Brian and the original short story of Zatoichi by Kan Shimozawa. As a sucker for Japanese cinema, I love the fact that Criterion would put as much quality and attention to this fabulous samurai series that action junkies should seek out.
Simon's Pick: V/H/S 2 (DVD/Blu-Ray Combo and...VHS)
Horror fans should ultimately love what V/H/S/2
is dishing out, if not for its startling competency for the fact it has something for everyone. Not only that it uses its found footage format not to pander to fans of the popular gimmick but to both enhance the experience and approach it as a barrier – one that needs to be overcome using creative means. This anthology is a blast from beginning to end and the rare sequel of any genre to recognize the shortcomings of the first and not only fix them but freshen everything else up as well. Also, the fact that V/H/S/2
was also released on VHS is pretty awesome!
Steven's Pick: Pacific Rim (2 Disc DVD Set)
After I saw this film in theaters, I couldn't wait for it to be come out on DVD, so I could watch it over and over again, as well as have some fantastic extras from the del Toro film. Now, I know there might have been a huge number of folks that were clambering for the Blu Ray version, but I found the 2-disc DVD set quite satisfying. There are some great featurettes, that explore the creation of the Jeagers and the Kaiju, which features great artwork on both them and the entire world of Pacific Rim. The best thing about probably all versions of the home video release is the audio commentary by del Toro. That alone is worth the price. You feel like you're being given a once in a lifetime lecture by del Toro on the history of the giant monster movie and mecha movie and how they played their part in influencing Pacific Rim, among other things.