Tag Archives: DVD Reviews

Doctor Who: The Complete Eighth Series – He’s Scottish – He Can Complain!

Doctor Who - Complete Series Eight

One of the two masterstrokes in the creation of Doctor Who is a machine that can take its pilot anytime in the universe (and to some points outside it), thus opening up the possibility of telling any/every kind of story imaginable. The other is the idea that when The Doctor gets too old/damaged, he can regenerate – making it possible for the show to carry on even if an actor is unable/chooses not to go on.

The eighth season of the current run of Doctor Who introduced the Twelfth Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (the fourteenth if you want to be sticky about it, but for all intents and purposes the twelfth) and did something that hadn’t been done before in the show’s fifty-one year history – it gave us a hero who didn’t believe in heroes… and wasn’t even sure if he was a good man. The result was an almost intoxicatingly odd season.

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Dark Apocalyptic Comedy LFO Comes To DVD!

LFO_OneSheet

LFO – a high-quality, low-fi science fiction black comedy (Eclipse gave it an A following its appearance at the Calgary International Film Festival) – works just as well on a small screen as it did in the theater because for all that it successfully achieves its ambitions, it is an intimate study on one man’s descent into madness.

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Doctor Who: Scream of the Shalka – Meet the First Ninth Doctor!

DoctorWho ScreamOfTheShalka

For the fortieth anniversary of Doctor Who – with no hope of a TV reboot (or any other celebration) of the show on tap – a couple of BBC employees decided to create an animated web series. Doctor Who: Scream of the Shalka was that web series – a Flash animation adventure of a slightly vampiric-looking Ninth Doctor voiced by Richard E. Grant.

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Doctor Who: The Green Death Special Edition – The Doctor Goes Eco-Warrior!

doctor-who-green-death-sp-ed

Doctor Who has always been known for spinning interesting, even classic yarns; for somehow managing, despite serious budgetary constraints, to create visual effects that could be creepy, scary and effective – some of the time. What Doctor Who had never done – before The Green Death – was consciously produce a message story. In the final adventure to feature Jo Grant, Doctor Who took on the challenge of environmental issues – and the possibilities of artificial intelligence – in one of the show’s most rewarding serials.

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DVD Review: God Bless America: Bobcat Goldthwaite Takes Out The Trash!

God_Bless_America_DVD

If you’ve ever been ticked off by a jerk who not only zips into that parking space you were heading for, but parked diagonally across its neighboring space as well; if you’ve ever wanted to wring the necks of a group of kids chattering through a movie, or put a definitive end to reality shows built around screaming, spoiled brats or self-indulgent bimbos, then God Bless America might just be the movie for you.

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The Killing: The Complete First Season – Two Weeks In A Frustrating Murder Investigation!

The-Killing-Season-1-DVD

AMC’s The Killing debuted to rave reviews and hit us with four or five amazing episodes of television before seeming to wander off and devolve into self-indulgence for four episodes before roaring back with three amazing episodes to finish its first season. The season finale puzzled some, infuriated others and intriguing just as many. The extras on the first season DVD set go a long way toward explaining the series plan in a way that should win back the most frustrated and infuriated viewers – they’ve certainly got me anticipating season two.

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DVD Review: The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo Rocks The Small Screen!

Dragon Tattoo

When I reviewed David Fincher’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo for its theatrical release, I noted that it surprised me because it was as good as the earlier, Swedish version that made Noomi Rapace familiar to an international audience. Considering its length and the fact that it’s very much a film that should be seen in a theater, Fincher’s film plays extremely well on the much smaller screen in my living-room.

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Battle Royale: The Complete Collection 4-Disc Collector’s Set – Before The Hunger Games There Was Battle Royale!

Battle Royale Complete DVD

Battle Royale – and its sequel, Battle Royale II – are among the most brutally beautiful movies I’ve ever seen. The original film is about a class of junior high school students are dumped on a deserted island and forced to kill each other off; the sequel, finds another ninth grade class being forced to attack the survivors of the first film – who have declared war on the adults responsible for the Battle Royale law.

Previously available in North America only in bootleg editions with dodgy subtitles, or very basic releases, these two films have a four-disc DVD release that comes with both the original theatrical release of the first film and the Special Edition that followed, the second film, and over two hours of bonus features.

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2-Disc Set Shows That Puss In Boots Is Terrific In 2D Too!

2-disc Puss

Dreamworks Animation’s Puss In Boots was a big hit in 3D, but, as the DVD release shows, it’s great fun in 2D, too – and the DVD Double Pack contains both a new Puss adventure – The Three Diablos – and plenty of bonus material.

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The Gantz Saga: Saved From Death To Wage War On Aliens!

Gantz-1 Gantz-II

The Gantz Saga is a two movie adaptation of the popular manga. At first, it seems like a straightforward superhero vs. aliens tale – albeit with an odd origin – but as the story progresses, it begins to ask questions and shift from one perspective to another.

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The Way – It’s About The Journey, Dummy!

The Way DVD art

Generally speaking, uplifting/inspirational movies tend to be clusters of clichés gathered together in a group and wallowing in mushy scores and ham-fisted acting. The Way opts to go another way – it’s a gentle, almost meandering story about a man coming to grips with the loss of a son and both finding himself and finding his way into a community – a blessedly cliché-free take on what Joseph Campbell called the Hero’s Journey.

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