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DISCussion: New on DVD and Blu-ray (4.14.15)

"New on DVD and Blu-ray this Week!"
We had a relatively close race this week between Jennifer Kent's The Babadook, and David Cronenberg's Maps to the Stars, but after much deliberation, The Babadook claims the title of Recommendation of the Week. New Release The Babadook – (Blu-ray, DVD and Instant/Netflix) Maps to the Stars – (Blu-ray, DVD and Instant) Big Eyes – (Blu-ray, DVD and Instant) Adieu au langage 3D – (3D Blu-ray) Re-Release Odd Man Out (1947) – (Criterion Blu-ray) Sullivan’s Travels (1941) – (Criterion Blu-ray)   New on DVD The Babadook – (Blu-ray, DVD and Instant) *Recommendation of the Week* Directed and written by Jennifer Kent Starring: Essie Davis, Noah Wiseman, Daniel Henshall One of the most beautiful and chilling films from 2014, Jennifer Kent's directorial debut is a horror masterwork. Avoiding all of the usual pitfalls of the genre, Kent keeps The Babadook firmly planted in psychological thriller territory. Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 98% (Superb) Metacritic: 86 (Excellent) IMDB: 6.9 (Good) Entertainment Fuse: 8.5/10 (Read our Review) DISC DETAILS Special Features: Jennifer Kent's short, Monster; deleted scenes; “Creating the Book” featurette; “A Tour of the House Set” featurette; “The Stunts” featurette; “Special Effects” featurette; “Behind-the-scenes” featurette; “Interviews with Cast and Crew” featurette; trailer Amazon: $14.99 (Blu-ray); $9.99 (DVD); $12.99 (Instant Buy); Netflix (US) Score (DVDTalk.com): Content: 4.5 stars(out of 5); Video: 5 stars; Audio: 5 stars; Extras: 2.5 stars; Replay: 4 stars. Highly Recommended.   New on DVD Maps to the Stars – (Blu-ray, DVD and Instant) Directed by David Cronenberg Written by Bruce Wagner (screenplay) Starring: Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, Robert Pattinson A star-studded ensemble cast is put through their paces in David Cronenberg's latest Hollywood-centered drama. As characters collide, the pressures of life under the spotlights of Los Angeles begin to wear them down. Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 63% (Fresh) Metacritic: 67 (Good) IMDB: 6.4 (Good) Entertainment Fuse: 7.3/10 (Read our Review) DISC DETAILS Amazon: $14.99 (Blu-ray); $16.97 (DVD); $3.99/$14.99 (Instant Rent/ Buy)   New on DVD Big Eyes – (Blu-ray, DVD and Instant) Directed by Tim Burton Written by Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski Starring: Amy Adams, Christoph Waltz, Danny Huston Tim Burton ventures into unfamiliar territory with a biopic centering around 1950's tacky art sensation, Margaret Keane (Adams). Probably the least “Tim Burton” film of his career, Big Eyes replicates the type of art it depicts – pure kitsch. Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 71% (Good) Metacritic: 62 (Good) IMDB: 7.0 (Very Good) Entertainment Fuse: 5.5/10 (Read our Review) DISC DETAILS Special Features: “Making of” featurette; “Q&A Highlight Reel” featurette Amazon: $19.85 (Blu-ray); $14.85 (DVD); $4.99/$12.99 (Instant Rent/ Buy) Score (DVDTalk.com): Content: 3.5 stars(out of 5); Video: 4 stars; Audio: 3 stars; Extras: 2.5 stars; Replay: 2.5 stars. Recommended.   New on DVD Adieu au langage 3D – (3D Blu-ray) Directed and written by Jean-Luc Godard Starring: Héloïse Godet, Kamel Abdeli, Richard Chevallier French New Wave pioneer Jean-Luc Godard proves, once again, that he can still be outrageously original. A formal experiment of 3D technology and imagery, Godard creates a film all his own, much to the delight of fans, and chagrin of detractors. Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 86% (Very Good) Metacritic: 75 (Very Good) IMDB: 6.1 (Good) DISC DETAILS Special Features: Essay by David Bordwell; Interview with Godard; Trailer Amazon: $25.29 (3D Blu-ray) Score (DVDTalk.com): Content: 0.5 stars(out of 5); Video: 1.5 stars; Audio: 1 stars; Extras: 3 stars; Replay: 0 stars. Skip It.   New on DVD Odd Man Out (1947) – (Criterion Blu-ray) Directed by Carol Reed Written by F.L. Green (screenplay and written by) and R.C. Sherriff (screenplay) Starring: James Mason, Robert Newman, Cyril Cusack Carol Reed steps firmly into noir territory with this, pre The Third Man, directorial effort. Placing a wounded James Mason in Belfast, Odd Man Out holds its breath as he evades the police after a daring robbery. Taking place largely over the course of one night, Reed's tense noir thriller is full of his trademark stylized lighting, and psychological drama. Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 100% (Superb) IMDB: 7.8 (Very Good) Entertainment Fuse: 9/10 DISC DETAILS Special Features: New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray; New interview with British cinema scholar John Hill, author of Cinema and Northern Ireland: Film, Culture and Politics; Postwar Poetry, a new short documentary about the film; New interview with music scholar Jeff Smith about composer William Alwyn and his score; Home, James, a 1972 documentary featuring actor James Mason revisiting his hometown; Radio adaptation of the film from 1952, starring Mason and Dan O’Herlihy; PLUS: An essay by critic Imogen Sara Smith Amazon: $26.19 (Criterion Blu-ray)   New on DVD Sullivan’s Travels (1941) – (Criterion Blu-ray) Directed and written by Preston Sturges Starring: Joel McCrea, Veronica Lake, Robert Warwick One of Preston Sturges' finest films, Sullivan's Travels follows director John Sullivan (McCrea) as he flees his plush life to gain “an experience in suffering” by traveling as a hobo. A light-hearted masterpiece, Sullivan's Travels is one of the best comedy films ever made. Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 100% (Superb) IMDB: 8.2 (Excellent) Entertainment Fuse: 9.5/10 DISC DETAILS Special Features: New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray; Audio commentary from 2001 by filmmakers Noah Baumbach, Kenneth Bowser, Christopher Guest, and Michael McKean; Preston Sturges: The Rise and Fall of an American Dreamer (1990), a seventy-five-minute documentary made by Bowser for PBS’s American Masters series; New video essay by film critic David Cairns, featuring filmmaker Bill Forsyth; Interview with Sandy Sturges, the director’s widow, from 2001; Interview with Sturges by gossip columnist Hedda Hopper from 1951; Archival audio recordings of Sturges; PLUS: An essay by critic Stuart Klawans Amazon: $22.99 (Criterion Blu-ray)


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