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Wed
18
Jan

Rizzoli & Isles Final Season Hits DVD

Rizzoli & Isles Season 7 (and Final)

Tess Gerritson's crimefighting duo reaches the end of the line of their television capers, with the impeccable Dr. Maura Isles (SASHA ALEXANDER) dealing with a head trauma injury that seems to have activated a genetic brain disorder that manifests in dizzy spells and forgetfulness. For the woman who is used to always being the smartest person in the room, this is a little more than unsettling, and several of the early episodes follow Maura's personal path as she pursues treatment options. Meanwhile, Detective Jane Rizzoli (ANGIE HARMON) is offered an opportunity to pursue a career with the FBI.

Sun
08
Jan

The Knights are Brick in Town in LEGO Nexo Knights Season 2

NEXO Knights Season 2

Strap in for another season of action, adventure, and LEGO bricks with the NEXO Knights! The evil jester, Jestro, is back, and he's got the living Book of Monsters with him! They continue they're hunt for the other books of evil that were scattered from their place of safe keeping when Merlock's tower exploded, and as they find them they get even more powerful.

Fortunately the NEXO Knights are better trained than they were in their first season, and their characters -- while still unique to each of them -- are less two-dimensional than they were when we first met them. They're going to need to employ all their monster fighting training and new downloaded abilities from Merlock 2.0 if they're going to save the day!

Thu
22
Dec

Maximum Ride Delivers Minimal Enjoyment

Maximum Ride on DVD

Director Jay Martin's vision of James Patterson's MAXIMUM RIDE is less of a movie and more of a CW series pilot -- and not a great one.

Allie Marie Evans (VANITY) plays Max, the heroine of Patterson's tale of a band of children who have been freed from a scientific facility known as "The School," where they were kept in cages while medical experiments were conducted upon them. They're special, because they have functioning wings. The kids -- Max, Fang (EXTANT's Patrick Johnson), Angel (Lyliana Wray), Gazz (Gavin Lewis), Nudge (Tetona Jackson) and Iggy (Zayne Emory) are now living in hiding, having been abandoned by the doctor who rescued them from the facility, Jeb (Peter O'Brien, WINTER), with no idea of Jeb's fate.

Tue
13
Dec

Fear the Walking Dead: The Complete Second Season on DVD

Fear the Walking Dead S2

I was given a copy of FEAR THE WALKING DEAD: The Complete Second Season to review. For those who aren’t familiar with the show, it’s a prequel to AMC’s THE WALKING DEAD and is supposed to give a view of the apocalypse in the beginning stages.

In season two, the cast moves from the hills of Los Angeles to the Pacific Ocean, traveling along the coast in a yacht named The Abigail. The group discovers the water holds as much danger as land, as they meet new friends and new dangers--and even more dangerous foes.

Fri
02
Dec

Bob Hope: Hope for the Holidays

Bob Hope: Hope for the Holidays on DVD

The world lost a fine entertainer when Bob Hope died. I grew up watching him go "on the road" with Bing Crosby and perform in his many other comedy films. But Bob was more than just that. His numerous trips overseas, sacrificing time with his family to entertain U.S. troops, made him a national treasure.

We may have lost Bob, but thanks to DVDs like this one, we'll never lose Hope.

HOPE FOR THE HOLIDAYS collects two of Hope's more memorable television holiday specials -- BOB HOPE'S BAG FULL OF CHRISTMAS MEMORIES (1993) and THE COMEDY HOUR (1950).

Tue
22
Nov

War Dogs a Dizzying Spin on Factual Events

War Dogs on Blu-ray

If you hear an alarm bell in the back of your mind when you read the phrase "Based on a True Story," listen to it.

Todd Phillips (THE HANGOVER) directs this somewhat comedic "true story" of David Packouz (MILES TELLER), a massage therapist disenchanted with his life who runs into an old friend, Efraim Diveroli (JONAH HILL), and ends up on the ride of his life in the high-paying world of selling weapons to the U.S. Government.

That's really all you need to know about the plot. Jonah Hill does his best Jonah Hill impression in playing Efraim, while the story unfolds from Packouz's point of view -- perhaps due to the fact that the real life Packouz only endured house arrest while the real life Diveroli served actual time, all for selling Chinese-made ammunition to the U.S. Military during a time when there was an embargo against Chinese-made weapons.

Mon
21
Nov

Frank Zappa, Eat That Question: Remembering a Rock Icon Who Didn’t Care How He Would Be Remembered

Frank Zappa - Eat That Question

Frank Zappa certainly filled his own niche in music. Showcasing his well-known biting social commentary, this video gives a rare (if ever) seen glimpse into the man that was much more than what most people today remember as the fighter who took on Tipper Gore and the PMRC.

Shown through archival interviews and concert/music “videos” from around the world (U.S., England, France, Germany Holland and Prague to name some), the video takes us progressively through his career, although not in a straight line; it was sort of “take two steps forward, take one back” as we are led through the history of the man.

Tue
08
Nov

On Election Day, Suzanne Collins Hunger Games Gets 4K Ultra HD Release to Show Things Could Always Be Worse

Hunger Games in 4K

On this election day in the United States, people on both sides of the political aisle are conjuring up visions of a dystopian America should "the other side" win the vote. What better day than this, then, to release THE HUNGER GAMES on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray disc?

Tue
01
Nov

Holy Animated Comebacks! Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders Hits Blu-ray

Batman Return of the Caped Crusaders

As often as we comic fans like to say that Batman is supposed to be a benevolent fascist, and battle whether our favorite is Nolan's "Dark Knight" or Miller's "Dark Knight" or one of the post-60s comic book incarnations, there will always be a special place inside each of us that regards Adam West as the Batman. Alas, as the Caped Crusader is well into his Golden Age, it's unlikely we'll ever see him play the role again.

But wait! What's this!

Could it be?

A new Adam West Batman?

The resurgence of the Boy Wonder?

Catwoman triumphant?

Mon
31
Oct

Star Trek Beyond Overcomes Plot with Visual Spectacle and Brilliant Moments

Star Trek Beyond on Blu-ray / DVD

The latest Star Trek film in the rebooted franchise bears the curious title STAR TREK BEYOND. Science fiction fans may have looked at this and thought it might be a peer into the far future of the Federation, akin to BATMAN BEYOND. Others might have expected the Federation to bo beyond...well, something. The galactic rim, perhaps.

Sun
30
Oct

One Nation Under Trump One Video To Avoid

One Nation Under Trump DVD

If you have a polarizing figure with a history of controversy and thrust him to the forefront of a Presidential campaign, it should be pretty hard to screw up a documentary about him -- but Director Jim Gufferson, Screenwriter BC Furtney and Producer Jason Winn 'J.B. Destiny' Bareford managed to do just that.

ONE NATION UNDER TRUMP sounds from the title like it might be a political prognostication in the vein of Dinesh D'Souza's HILLARY'S AMERICA. Could it be a dystopian view of the rise of a megalomaniacal magnate? Could it be an optimistic view of a nation united under a political outsider who castigates corruption?

Could it at least tell a story?

Thu
20
Oct

Good Grief! Charlie Brown's All Stars is 50 -- and on DVD!

Charlie Brown's All Stars 50th Anniversary

When I get home from where I've spent the prior ten hours, I like to grab something cold to drink out of the fridge, and sit down in front of the tube to watch cartoons.

Then I look at the cartoon I'm watching and realize that it's celebrating a 50th anniversary -- and my bubble pops. I'm not coming home from school and grabbing a Hi-C anymore. I have a job, and the drink in my hands is one I wasn't allowed until I turned 21. My cartoons are old, and I've gotten old with them.

CHARLIE BROWN'S ALL STARS! is the cartoon in question today, released on DVD for it's 50th anniversary. It doesn't get as much fanfare as the holiday classics (among which I happen to include the Easter and Thanksgiving cartoons), but story-wise I rank it as much better than any of those. There weren't long gaps of no dialogue filled with music and dancing. This was Charlie Brown engaged in one of the things he loved most, and looking at having to give it up: baseball!

Fri
14
Oct

Batman Unlimited: Mechs vs Mutants a Messy Toy Advert Packaged as Entertainment

Batman Unlmited: Mechs vs Mutants

Let's not kid ourselves. As much as Batman has been used for merchandising, it's always been that the toys were based off the character. With BATMAN UNLIMITED, it's clearly a case of the story being designed to foster a base for the merchandising. It's an advertisement wrapped in entertainment.

The plot: Mr. Freeze (ODED FEHR) is providing asylum to Penguin (DANA SNYDER) at his arctic retreat. But drilling in the region prompts Freeze to respond by siccing a giant monster of his own creation on the crew.

That Freeze can do this gives Penguin an idea, and he encourages Freeze to return to Gotham City and turn it into an icy wasteland for himself, while creating an impossible enemy for Batman. But first they must break out some Arkham inmates (which do not include The Joker, although he gets two cameos voiced by Troy Baker).

Fri
07
Oct

Legend of Tarzan Doesn't Have That Swing

Legend of Tarzan Blu-ray

Tarzan. There are so few legends sprung up from American literature that are so rich with potential as the story of John Clayton, Lord Greystoke, orphaned infant raised by apes in the jungles of Africa. And there are so few moviegoers who really know much beyond the Ron Ely and Johnny Weissmuller films of bygone days. Not many know the Tarzan who learned to read English from a primer but speak French from a jungle explorer.

I'll give Director David Yates and his writers this credit -- they at least tried to put as much of the Edgar Rice Burroughs character as they could into THE LEGEND OF TARZAN -- and they couldn't have cast a better Tarzan than TRUE BLOOD's Alexander Skarsgård for sheer rippling abs combined with a gentle voice.

Fri
23
Sep

Unleash the Power with Disney's The Lion Guard on DVD

The Lion Guard: Unleash the Power on DVD

The adventures of Simba's son Kion continue with this episode compilation, THE LION GUARD: UNLEASH THE POWER.

Kion (Max Charles) and his young friends work together as the Lion Guard to protect the Pride Lands, helping out during natural disasters and assisting other animals in trouble -- and, of course, fending off Janja the Hyena (Andrew Kishino) and his crew as they forever try to creep into the Pride Lands and disrupt the Circle of Life.

Fri
16
Sep

Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows - Fun and Action-Packed

TMNT Out of the Shadows on BD and DVD

A year after the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles took down their nemesis, Shredder (Brian Tee), and sent him to prison, they are still living under the radar in the sewers, sneaking into basketball games and enjoying pizza. It's not a perfect existence, but more or less they are happy. However, their friend April (Megan Fox) learns that scientist Baxter Stockton (Tyler Perry) is somehow planning to help Shredder break out during a prisoner transfer. Despite Donatello (Jeremy Howard), Leonardo (Pete Ploszek), Michaelangelo (Noel Fisher), and Raphael (Alan Ritchson) racing to stop this, Shredder manages to escape with the help of Stockton's teleportation device. When the Turtles realize Shredder's plans to open a portal and ensure his rising power, they race to stop him.

Mon
12
Sep

James Wan Conjures Up Chills in Sequel - The Conjuring 2 on Blu-ray and DVD

The Conjuring 2 on Blu-ray and DVD

When I volunteered to review THE CONJURING 2 on Blu-ray, I went into it without having seen the film to which this is titularly a sequel. As it turns out, that's quite okay, because in a broader sense it's not only a stand-apart film, but it's also the latest in a long sequence of stories, from different directors and production companies, stringing back to THE AMITYVILLE HORROR. That's because the protagonists of this film are Ed and Lorraine Warren (portrayed as they were in THE CONJURING by PATRICK WILSON and VERA FARMIGA), the same investigators who were called in to investigate the house in Amityville, New York in the 1970s.

Tue
06
Sep

Whole New World(s) for The Flash in Season Two now on Blu-ray

The Flash Season 2 on Blu-ray

 

 

 

The second season of CW's breakout superhero show (and two-time winner of Critical Blast's Best Television Show of the Year) THE FLASH is now available on for home video on Blu-ray and DVD, including the crossover with ARROW (but not the crossover with SUPERGIRL). Maybe next year.

Wed
31
Aug

The Nice Guys a Window into Not-So-Nice Seventies Detective Genre

The Nice Guys on Blu-ray

Shane Black's THE NICE GUYS is a retro-cool foray into the seedy seventies. And nowhere were the seventies more seedy than in smog-choked, porn-brimming Los Angeles, where our two not-exactly-heroes, Jackson Healy (RUSSELL CROWE) and Holland March (RYAN GOSLING) meet up.

Mon
29
Aug

Gotham Season Two Highlights the Rise of the Villains

Gotham Season 2 on Blu-ray

The pre-Batman stories of Gotham City continue in the second season of GOTHAM, now on Blu-ray and DVD.

Ben McKenzie (SOUTHLAND) continues his role as Gotham City Police icon James Gordon, now busted down to traffic cop after his stint last season taking down corruption within the ranks. But when he is finally ousted by the crooked Police Commissioner Loeb (Peter Scolari -- in an outstanding dramatic contrast to BOSOM BUDDIES and NEWHART), Gordon makes a deal with the devil in the form of the Penguin, Oswald Cobblepot (Robin Lord Taylor), who now finds himself with a tenuous hold on the throne of all Gotham City crime. All Gordon has to do is collect a debt for Penguin and he'll see that Commissioner Loeb is fired and he gets his old job back. But things go horribly wrong in a way that will haunt Jim forever.

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