Disney’s 50th Animated movie recently hit the old Blu-ray format. Knowing how well Disney generally does with it’s Blu-ray releases, I was expected a feature packed release to celebrate this major milestone in the studio’s history, instead Disney Home Video plays it safe and phones it in, in this “featureless” Blu-ray” release.
Disney has been phoning it in lately on some of their recent Blu-ray releases. They have pulled out all the stops for Tron: Legacy. This five disc set includes the 3D, regular Blu-ray, Digital Copy and DVD versions of Tron: Legacy, if that’s not enough they go the extra mile and give us the Blu-ray version of Tron The Original Classic. Let’s give Disney mad props for giving us the complete Tron Experience right out of the gate without the double dip trip.
I loved Tron: Legacy, it was one of my top 10 films of 2010 and it holds up well on Blu-ray, even better because I didn’t have to watch it in 3D – that is until I get a 3D TV in a few weeks. The youngification of Jeff Bridges is just downright creepy. You can check out my full review of Tron: Legacy here – http://eclipsemagazine.com/comic-books/23627/
To celebrate today’s release of Little Fockers on DVD and Blu-ray, the folks at Universal Home Video has given us a copy of the DVD to give away. If you want it, sign up for the EclipseMagazine Twitter Feed at twitter.com/eclipsemagazine. Send your full name and address to email@example.com by Thursday, April 7th. One winner will be selected at random. Official press release and trailer are after the break.
Another one of Disney’s classic animated masterpieces finally comes to Blu-ray. Disney scored a huge mega hit with the live action version of Alice in Wonderland, so why not bring back their classic animated movie? The new 60th Anniversary Special Edition Blu-ray disc features a gorgeous transfer of the movie. When watching it, it’s hard to believe this movie is so old – other than the fact that it wears its old fashioned values on its sleeve.
It goes without saying that the animation looks as crisp and clean as it did 60 years ago. The colors are rich in detail and you can see the love that went into every brush stroke. I’m not a purist about most things, but I am when it comes to animation and animation movies. I will always prefer and love real old fashioned brush strokes and cell animation to today’s computer animation. As competent and amazing as computer generated animated films from the likes of Pixar, Dreamworks Animation, etc. are, I can never get past how soulless a lot of it looks. Yeah Toy Story 3 looks stunning, but it doesn’t have the “soul” that hand drawn animation has.
What can you say about a movie like The Expendables? It’s a movie that would have been so amazing to see about seven or ten years ago when this great ensemble of action stars where kicking ass and taking names in their prime. As it is watching the movie feels like watching nostalgia and that’s not necessarily a bad thing: just different than what it could have been. I mean every action fan has had the question who would kick whose butt Bruce Willis or Stallone or if Jet Li went Chop Sokki of Dolph would little Li survive the encounter? The Expendables is everything a fan of old school 80s action films would want. Stallone has put together a great cast featuring action stars from different eras and everyone seemed to love being part of this.
I’m not ashamed to admit it, ok, a little ashamed but I’ll say it anyway. Step Up 3D was one of my favorite movies of 2010 and definitely the best 3D Movie that I’ve seen all year. I’ve always liked the Step Up franchise for what it was. No it’s not cinema at its best, but they were always fun movies and I’m a sucker for most films about the creative process no matter how clichéd they may be. So in that respect this movie is in my wheelhouse but 3D? I couldn’t think of a more useless application (at least until Jackass 3D came out), but the minute they showed a gorgeous shot of Times Square in 3D I was hooked.
Now the Movie is on Blu-ray without the 3D gimmick and you know what? It works better for me. I’m not going to go into plot details, as it doesn’t really matter. A movie like Step Up 3 is about the dancing, not the inane plot, the thing you have to ask yourself, “Is the dancing good?” The first couple of dance sequences like the opening battle with Moose (Adam Sevani), a ridiculous bathroom battle sequence, and the 1st competition battle were all pretty bad. It’s even worse when you watch it without the 3D. There were moments in Moose’s opening battle that were pretty amazing to watch but the entire set up just made no sense. I mean whenever I go to NY people always just randomly break out into dance battles. How does one “win” an spontaneous dance battle anyway?
I’m not a big fan of the year end list or doing Holiday Guides, they are a lot of trouble to write and it’s always tough to come up with that “definitive” list. I say this every year, but do it anyway. Like this year’s movies, there wasn’t much on the Blu-ray front that tickled my fancy this year, so my list doesn’t have as much variety to it as it usually does. This list also doubles as my Top Blu-ray/DVD Picks of 2010.
I thought I’d start the show with my favorite movie of 2010, Kick-Ass is a movie that deserves some Oscar buzz, but won’t get any. I don’t know why this movie didn’t get much box office loving, it’s truly a masterpiece of carnage, destruction, and it’s genuinely funny. It’s worth getting for Chloe Moretz amazing performance as Hit Girl – if she doesn’t get some award consideration for best actress this year, there’s something wrong. Amazing movie. While the Blu-ray isn’t ground breaking, it includes enough features and a beautiful transfer that makes it worthy as my Best Blu-ray of 2010 pick. Buy Now.
River Runs Through It, the stunningly beautiful and moving family drama set against a background of fly fishing and the Montana wilderness, debuts on Blu-ray Disc July 28 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Directed by Academy Award® winning director Robert Redford, the film won high praise for bringing to the screen the lyrical and spiritual splendor of Norman Maclean’s much-loved autobiographical novella. Two-time Oscar® nominees Brad Pitt (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Twelve Monkeys) and Brenda Blethyn (Little Voice, Secrets & Lies) , along with Tom Skerritt (Steel Magnolias, TV’s “Brothers & Sisters”) and Emily Lloyd (Wish You Were Here) star in A River Runs Through It which captured a 1992 Academy Award in 1992 for Best Cinematography and received nominations for Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Original Score.
Sony’s high-def set is packaged in a 32-page book with photos, talent files and three pages of the Oscar-nominated screenplay. It also contains exclusive bonus features, including a how-to lesson from master fly fisherman Brandon Boedecker; a documentary on the restoration of the Blackfoot River with the help of Redford and his film crew; a behind-the-scenes look at the film’s production; selected deleted scenes and BD exclusive screen savers of the beautiful Montana landscape. The Blu-ray Disc will be available for $38.96 SRP.
Defiance is coming to Blu-ray and DVD, June 2. The DEFIANCE DVD is presented in widescreen enhanced for 16:9 TVs with Dolby Digital English 5.1 Surround, French 5.1 Surround and Spanish 5.1 Surround and English, French and Spanish subtitles. The Blu-ray disc is presented in 1080p high definition with English 5.1 Dolby TrueHD, French 5.1 Dolby Digital and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital and English, English SDH, French and Spanish subtitles. The discs include the following special features in high definition as noted:
• Commentary by director Edward Zwick
• Defiance: Return to the Forest (HD)—Explores all aspects of production from the early stages of pre-production to shooting on location in Lithuania. Edward Zwick and his creative team discuss some of the challenges and also the rewards of adapting this well-documented historical event into a feature film.
• Bielski Partisan Survivors (HD)—Photo gallery of images taken by Edward Zwick including behind-the-scenes images and surviving members from the Bielski Otriad.
• Children of the Otriad: The Families Speak (HD)—Descendents of the Bielski family tour the film’s set and relate the story of the real-life partisans along with efforts to preserve the brothers’ legacy.
• Scoring Defiance (HD) —Blu-ray only —Academy Award® nominated composer James Newton Howard and violinist Joshua Bell discuss the incredible film score for Defiance.
• Theatrical trailers (HD)