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DISCussion: New on DVD and Blu-ray (10.16.12)

3D home entertainment technology is improving all the time and becoming cheaper. Avatar is a movie has one of the best uses of 3D and now the 3D Blu-ray is being released and that alone makes it our recommendation of the week.

First Release
Moonrise Kingdom (DVD and Blu-ray)
Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted (DVD and Blu-ray)
The Forgiveness of Blood (DVD and Blu-ray)
Chernobyl Diaries (DVD and Blu-ray)
That’s My Boy (DVD and Blu-ray)
Excision (DVD and Blu-ray)

Re-Release
The Sterile Cuckoo (1969) (DVD and Blu-ray)
Avatar (2009) (3D Blu-ray)
Pete’s Dragon (1977) (Blu-ray)
A League of Their Own (1992) (Blu-ray)
Ella Enchanted (2004) (Blu-ray)
The Santa Clause (1994) (Blu-ray)
The Santa Clause 2 (2002) (Blu-ray)
The Santa Clause Trilogy (Blu-ray)
Suddenly (1954) (Blu-ray)

Avatar (2009) (3D Blu-ray) *Recommendation of the Week*

Written and directed by James Cameron
Starring: Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Sigourney Weaver

James Cameron’s Avatar was one of the most eagerly anticipated movies ever made and it is also the most successful, out-grossing every movie ever made and winning three Academy Awards on nine nominations overall.

In 2154, humans have colonized the moon Pandora to mine for its valuable mineral, unobtanium. But it’s populated by the Na’vi, 10-foot tall blue-skinned creatures who are not happy that humanity wants to ruin their home. The military, led by Colonel Quaritch (Stephen Lang) wants to go to war, while lead scientist Grace Augustine (Sigourney Weaver) wants to form good relations with the Na’vi. In the middle of this conflict is Jake Sully (Sam Worthington), a disabled former Marine who uses a Na’vi avatar to integrate himself into a tribe.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes):
83% (very good)
Player Affinity Score:
8.6/10 (read our review)

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: N/A

Amazon Price: $24.99 (3D Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

The other major release of the week is Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom, his most successful movie to date. Also earning a release of DVD and Blu-ray are the animated hit Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted, Joshua Marston’s The Forgiveness of Blood and horror flick Excision. The biggest re-releases of the week are the sports movie A League of Their Own, the romantic movie The Sterile Cuckoo and Disney’s Pete’s Dragon.

Moonrise Kingdom (DVD and Blu-ray)

Directed by Wes Anderson
Written by Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola
Starring: Jared Gilman, Kara Hayward, Edward Norton, Bruce Willis, Bill Murray, Frances McDormand

Moonrise Kingdom is one of Wes Anderson’s best received and financially successful movies. This quirky comedy-drama is a coming of age story about two 12-year-olds, Sam (Jared Gilman) and Suzy (Kara Hayward,) from troubled families who run away from home. The whole of their small island home, including Suzy’s parents (Bill Murray and Frances McDormand), Scout Master Randy Ward (Edward Norton) and Police Captain Sharp (Bruce Willis) search for them.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 94% (excellent)
Player Affinity Score:
8.1/10 (read our review)

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: A look inside Moonrise Kingdom; Welcome to the island of New Penzance; Set tour with Bill Murray

Amazon Price: $16.99 (DVD), $19.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): Content 4.5 stars, Video 4.5 stars, Audio 4.5 stars, Extras 1.5 stars, Replay 4.5 stars (out of 5). Highly Recommended.

Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted (DVD and Blu-ray)

Directed by Eric Darnell, Tom McGarth, Conrad Vernon
Written by Eric Darnell, Noah Baumbach (screenplay), Eric Darnell, Tom McGrath (characters)
Starring: Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer, Jada Pinkett Smith, Sacha Baron Cohen

The Madagascar series has a very interesting quirk: each movie has a higher Rotten Tomatoes then the previous entry. Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted is critically the most successful movie of the series as Alex, Marty, Melman and Gloria continue their adventures to return to New York by joining a travelling crisis.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 78% (very good)
Player Affinity Score:
5.5/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Mad Music; Mash-up; Deleted Scenes; Big Top Cast; Filmmakers’ Commentary; Circus Acts; Making of How to Train Your Dragon Live Spectacular arena show world tour; And much more high-flying fun!

Additional Blu-ray Special Features: MARTY’S RAINBOW WIG!; Get them to the Train game; Animators’ Corner; Trivia Track

Amazon Price: $16.99 (DVD), $19.99 (Blu-ray), $27.99 (3D Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

The Forgiveness of Blood (DVD and Blu-ray)

Directed by Joshua Marston
Written by Joshua Marston, Andamion Murataj
Starring: Refet Abazi Tristan Halilaj, Sindi Lacej

The Forgiveness of Blood is Joshua Marston’s follow-up movie to his Oscar-nominated movie Maria Full of Grace. Released by the Criterion Collection, The Forgiveness of Blood is set in northern Albania amidst a interfamilial blood feud which sees Nik (Tristan Halilaj) and his sister Rudina (Sindi Lacej) caught in the middle.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 85% (excellent)
Player Affinity Score:
N/A

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Audio commentary featuring director and cowriter Joshua Marston; Two new video programs: Acting Close to Home, a discussion between Marston and actors Refet Abazi, Tristan Halilaj, and Sindi Laçej, and Truth on the Ground, featuring new and on-set interviews with Mezey, Abazi, Halilaj, and Laçej;  Audition and rehearsal footage; Trailer; PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film writer Oscar Moralde

Amazon Price: $24.99 (DVD), $34.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

Chernobyl Diaries (DVD and Blu-ray)

Directed by Bradley Parker
Written by Oren Peli, Carey Van Dyke, Shane Van Dyke, Martin Solibakke (screenplay), Oren Peli (story)
Starring: Jesse McCartney, Jonathan Sadowski, Devin Kelley, Olivia Taylor Dudley, Nathan Phillips, Ingrid Bolso, Berdal, Dimitri Diatchenko

Following the success of Paranormal Activity, writer/director Oren Peli was seen as one of the next big minds in horror. One of his follow-up movies was co-writing the extreme tourism horror movie Chernobyl Diaries, which was a critical bomb.

Chernobyl Diaries tells of six friends who embark on a trip to Prypiat, the town that was abandoned after the Chernobyl meltdown. But of course in horror movie tradition, the friends are not alone.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 20% (very bad)
Player Affinity Score:
3.3/10 (read our review)

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Chernobyl Conspiracy Viral Video

Additional Blu-ray Special Features: Uri’s Extreme Tours Infomercial; Additional Scene

Amazon Price: $14.99 (DVD), $19.99 (Blu-ray), $19.96 (Blu-ray/DVD Combo)

Score (DVDTalk.com): Content 2 stars, Video 4 stars, Audio 3.5 stars, Extras 1 stars, Replay 1 stars (out of 5). Skip It.

That’s My Boy (DVD and Blu-ray)

Directed by Sean Anders
Written by David Caspe
Starring: Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Leighton Meester, Susan Sarandon, Ciara

That’s My Boy is Adam Sandler’s follow-up to the Razzie sweeping Jack and Jill. Despite Sex Drive’s Sean Anders directing and David Caspe of Happy Endings writing the screenplay, the R-rated That’s My Boy was still a critical bomb and failed to make its budget back.

In 1984, 13-year-old Donny (Justin Weaver) is hailed as a hero for impregnating his hot teacher (Eva Amurri Martino) and becomes a national celebrity. But in the present day, Donny (Sandler) is a washed-up failure with massive tax troubles. There is only one way Donny can pay off his tax bill: he must reconnect with his son, Todd (Andy Samberg), and get him to reunite him with his jailed mother for a documentary. But Todd is himself planning on getting married and mayhem eschews.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 21% (very bad)
Player Affinity Score:
2.0/10 (read our review)

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Deleted scenes; Gag reel

Additional Blu-ray Special Features: Who Are All These People?: Celebrity Cameos; Greetings from Cape Cod; Classy Ric’s Bacon and Leggs: Go Inside the Strip Club to See Champale’s Moves on the Pole

Amazon Price: $18.95 (DVD), $19.96 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): Content 1 stars, Video 5 stars, Audio 4 stars, Extras 2 stars, Replay 0 stars (out of 5). Skip It.

Excision (DVD and Blu-ray)

Written and directed by Richard Bates, Jr.
Starring: AnnaLynne McCord, Traci Lords, Ariel Winter, Roger Bart, Malcolm McDowell

Premiering at the Sundance Film Festival, Excision is a critically praised horror movie about Pauline (AnnaLynne McCord, 90210), an 18-year-old high school student who wants to enter into a career in medicine and goes to extreme lengths to please her controlling mother.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 88% (excellent)
Player Affinity Score:
N/A

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: N/A

Amazon Price: $12.99 (DVD), $14.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

The Sterile Cuckoo (1969) (DVD and Blu-ray)

Directed by Alan J. Pakula
Written by Alvin Sargent (screenplay), John Nichols (novel)
Starring: Liza Minnelli, Wendell Burton, Tim McIntire

Based on a novel by John Nichols, The Sterile Cuckoo is a romantic movie about Mary Ann “Pookie” Adams (Liza Minnelli), an oddball college student who meets the shy Jerry (Wendell Burton). Pookie and Jerry form a relationship and Pookie helps Jerry gain self-confidence. But as Jerry becomes more confident, he slowly outgrows Pookie.

The Sterile Cuckoo was nominated for two Oscars for Best Actress and Best Song.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 88% (excellent)
Player Affinity Score:
N/A

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: N/A

Amazon Price: $24.29 (DVD), $28.83 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

Pete’s Dragon (1977) (Blu-ray)

Directed by Don Chaffey
Written by Malcolm Marmorstein (screenplay), S.S. Field, Seton Miller (story)
Starring: Helen Reddy, Jim Dale, Mickey Rooney, Red Buttons, Shelley Winters, Sean Marshall

The Disney re-release of the week is Pete’s Dragon, a live action/animated hybrid from the 1970s. In early 20th Century New England, an orphan named Pete (Sean Marshall) runs away from his adoptive parents with his only friend, his cartoon dragon.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 50% (average)
Player Affinity Score:
N/A

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Brazzle Dazzle Effects: Behind Disney’s movie magic Deleted storyboard sequence Original song concept: “Boo Bop Bopbop Bop (I Love You, Too)” DVD: Original song concept: “Boo Bop Bopbop Bop (I Love You, Too)”

Amazon Price: $17.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

A League of Their Own (1992) (Blu-ray)

Directed by Penny Marshall
Written by Lowell Ganz, Babaloo Mandel (screenplay), Kim Wilson, Kelly Candaele (story)
Starring: Geena Davis, Lori Petty, Tom Hanks, Madonna, Rosie O’Donnell

The comedy-drama A League of Their Own is a popular sports movie. In 1943, the United States was in full war mode, and with most men away serving in the war effort, women took their jobs. This even included professional baseball, and to keep the sport alive, all-women teams are formed. A washed-up pro Jimmy Dugan (Tom Hanks) is hired to coach a team that includes Dottie Hinson (Geena Davis), the Babe Ruth of the women’s game.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 82% (very good)
Player Affinity Score:
8.0/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Director and Cast Commentary featuring Penny Marshall, Lori Petty, Megan Cavanagh and Tracy Reiner; 15 Deleted Scenes with Introductions from Director Penny Marshall; Nine Memorable Innings Documentary Featuring Interviews with the Cast and Filmmakers; Madonna’s “This Used to Be My Playground” Music Video

Amazon Price: $13.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): Content 4.5 stars, Video 4 stars, Audio 4 stars, Extras 2 stars, Replay 4.5 stars (out of 5). Highly Recommended.

Ella Enchanted (2004) (Blu-ray)

Directed by Tommy O’Haver
Written by Karen McCullah Lutz, Kirsten Smith (screenplay), Gail Carson Levin (novel)
Starring: Anne Hathaway, Hugh Dancy

Based on Gail Carson Levin’s revisionist fairy tale, Anne Hathaway stars as Ella, who is giving the ‘gift’ of obedience and has to do anything anyone requests from her. Ella ends up having to keep this curse secret from her stepmother so she can protect the prince (Hugh Dancy, Martha Marcy May Marlene) and she must find her fairy godmother to reverse the magic spell.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 50% (average)
Player Affinity Score:
5.5/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: Deleted and extended scenes; “Red Carpet Premiere Special”; “The Magical World of Ella Enchanted“; Prince Charmont’s Fan Club set-top game; Music video; “Happily Ever After” DVD-ROM feature

Amazon Price: $10.99 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

The Santa Clause (1994) (Blu-ray)

Directed by John Pasquin
Written by Leo Benvenuti, Steve Rudnick
Starring: Tim Allen, Eric Lloyd, Wendy Crewson, Judge Reinhold, David Krumholtz, Peter Boyle

Halloween has not even arrived yet, but Christmas movies are being re-released. The Santa Clause was a Tim Allen vehicle in which the Home Improvement star plays Scott Calvin, a divorced father who accidently kills Santa Clause and ends up having to become the next Santa Clause.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 82% (very good)
Player Affinity Score:
6.8/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: “So You Wanna Be An Elf?” featurette Making Santa snacks with Wolfgang “The Night Before Christmas” short

Amazon Price: $14.85 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

The Santa Clause 2 (2002) (Blu-ray)

Directed by Michael Lembeck
Written by Don Rhymer, Cinco Paul, Ken Daurio, Ed Decter, John J. Strauss (screenplay), Leo Benvenuti, Steve Rudnick (characters)
Starring: Tim Allen, Judge Reinhold, Wendy Crewson, Elizabeth Mitchell, David Krumholtz, Eric Lloyd, Spencer Breslin

Made eight years after the original, The Santa Clause 2 sees Scott Calvin becoming one of the best Santa Claus’ ever. But there is trouble ahead because Scott needs to find a wife and he finds out his son (Eric Lloyd) has been placed on the naughty list.

Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes): 55% (average)
Player Affinity Score:
3.8/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: deleted scenes Gag reel- bloopers from the cast “Inside The North Pole With Curtis”- making of featurette “True Confessions Of The Legendary Figures”- interviews wiht Tooth Fairy, Mother Nature, Father Time and Easter Bunny Director’s tour of Elfsburg featurette View the film with audio commentary by director Michael Lembeck

Amazon Price: $15.83 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

The Santa Clause Trilogy (Blu-ray)

Santa Clause (1994)
Directed by John Pasquin
Written by Leo Benvenuti, Steve Rudnick
Starring: Tim Allen, Eric Lloyd, Wendy Crewson, Judge Reinhold, David Krumholtz, Peter Boyle

Santa Clause 2 (2002)
Directed by Michael Lembeck
Written by Don Rhymer, Cinco Paul, Ken Daurio, Ed Decter, John J. Strauss (screenplay), Leo Benvenuti, Steve Rudnick (characters)
Starring: Tim Allen, Judge Reinhold, Wendy Crewson, Elizabeth Mitchell, David Krumholtz, Eric Lloyd, Spencer Breslin

Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause (2006)
Directed by Michael Lembeck
Written by Ed Decter, John J. Strauss (screenplay), Leo Bevenuti, Steve Rudnick (characters)
Starring: Tim Allen, Martin Short, Elizabeth Mitchell, Judge Reinhold, Eric Lloyd, Spencer Breslin

The other Santa Clause related release of the week is the whole trilogy coming onto a Blu-ray boxset as you can Tim Allen’s conduct his duties as the legendary present giver.

The Santa Clause (1994)
Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes):
82% (very good)
Player Affinity Score:
5.5/10

The Santa Clause 2 (2002)
Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes):
55% (average)
Player Affinity Score:
3.8/10

The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause
(2006)
Critics Rating (Rotten Tomatoes):
15% (awful)
Player Affinity Score:
1.0/10

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: N/A

Amazon Price: $33.86 (Blu-ray)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

Suddenly (1954) (Blu-ray)

Directed by Lewis Allen
Written by Richard Sale
Starring: Frank Sinatra, Sterling Hayden, James Gleason, Nancy Gates, Kim Charney, Christopher Dark

Frank Sinatra was of course a brilliant singer who starred in his fair share of hit movies, highlights being From Here to Eternity and The Manchurian Candidate. One of his darkest roles was in the low-budget film noir Suddenly in which he plays gangster John Baron, who seizes a widow’s home so he has the perfect place to assassinate the President.

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

DISC DETAILS

DVD Special Features: New Audio Commentary by FRANK SINATRA, JR; New Audio Commentary by DR. DREW CASPER, Professor of American Film; Short Film by Francis Thompson: N.Y., N.Y.: A Day in New York (1957); Image Gallery

Amazon Price:
$17.98 (Blu-ray), $12.99 (Blu-ray/DVD Combo)

Score (DVDTalk.com): N/A

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