Four solid picks hit shelves this week on DVD and Blu-ray. The two new releases are not destined to be remembered like the two re-releases, but they held their own on the big screen earlier this year.
Those dreadful first quarter theater releases are finally making their way to home video, but at least this week's pair are two of the better ones. The Green Hornet and The Dilemma hope to add a little humor to your week.
Miramax is bringing back the Gecko Brothers with the Blu-ray re-release of Robert Rodriguez's cult classic From Dusk Till Dawn. On the other side of the spectrum is the airy, metaphorical drama What Dreams May Come.
The following titles can now be found on DVD and Blu-ray.
The Green Hornet - Many expected the worst when they found out Seth Rogen was involved in a mid-January release of The Green Hornet. As it turned out, The Green Hornet wasn't all that bad. Our review found plenty of flaws in the film, but overall it was a light-hearted action comedy that simply tried too hard to be more than it was.
Surely this release doesn't coincide with the recent box office behemoth Fast Five, but gear head movie fans are having a great week. Few movies showcase flashy cars on screen like these two, and the home video release of Green Hornet should let audiences relive the vibrant sound design associated with the car-centric action scenes.
Sony Pictures delivers a great selection of special features that will truly enhance the viewing experience. There is a healthy portion of behind-the-scenes featurettes and a great commentary to cap it off. The best featurette is a 14-minute piece on Hollywood's uncanny ability to blow things up.
- Audio Commentary: Actor/Producer Seth Rogan, Producer Neal Moritz, Director Michel Gondry, and Writer Evan Goldberg
- Deleted Scenes
- "Awesoom" Gag Reel
- "Trust Me" -- Director Michael Gondry
- Writing The Green Hornet
- The Black Beauty: Rebirth of Cool
- The Stunt Family Armstrong
- Finding Kato
- The Art of Destruction
The Dilemma - Ron Howard's departure from quality cinema to make this "bromantic comedy" (Universal's words, not mine) didn't get much press from us, and with good reason. The Dilemma just isn't a great movie. Yet, while it's overall value is low, there are some moments worth a watch. Essentially, this movie is the perfect rental.
Channing Tatum somehow pulls off the most entertaining character in the movie and shows up two of the more prominent comedy stars today - Vince Vaughn and Kevin James. It says something about your movie when the DVD/Blu-ray box art has a single-word quote ("HILARIOUS") that is almost as large as the over-sized title above it.
As a Chicagoan, I am personally excited to see some of the Chicago scenes revealed in behind-the-scenes footage. One featurette does just that by giving a mini-tour of the city Vince Vaughn clearly loves so much. Otherwise, the bonus features are your typical gathering of deleted scenes, an alternate ending and a gag reel that litters on most "bromantic comedies."
- Alternate Ending
- Deleted Scenes
- Gag Reel
- This is The Dilemma
- Tour Chicago
- On Ice
From Dusk Till Dawn - Robert Rodriguez is a cult-classic master. He is one of those rare filmmakers that can make a movie that is generally rejected by the masses, but completely beloved by a select group of fans. The genre-mashing From Dusk Till Dawn is another example of his capability to make unique and unprecedented movies.
As vampire movies progressively get more mainstream and less creative, From Dusk Till Dawn remains one of my favorites in the genre. The one-two punch of George Clooney and Quentin Tarantino makes the movie enjoyable on multiple levels before the action and gore even kicks into full gear. There is no question this movie deserves a Blu-ray release and it continues a recent trend of getting Robert Rodriguez's full collection to the Blu-ray format.
What Dreams May Come - Say what you will about this film, but I find it to be completely engaging and breathtaking on every level. It is an emotional look at one man's vision of life after death and its inter-connectivity with the real world. But beyond the emotional journey of the film, it is a true adventure movie.
Robin Williams explores an environment that none of us will ever be able to experience. Yes, it is an interpretation of heaven and hell, but it is so specific to this character that it defines the concept that movies take us places we can never go to on our own. Director Vincent Ward's vision is truly inspiring and filled with creative energy that few filmmakers achieve today.
The two Blu-ray re-releases this week are must-buys. If you own a Blu-ray player, there is no reason not to own those two movies. As for the new releases, you may want to rent those.
Next week provides a few more intriguing titles like No Strings Attached, Blue Valentine and the Illusionist. Stay tuned for details on those releases next Tuesday.