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New on DVD and Blu-ray Week of March 03-09

View Chris Kavan's Profile

By Chris Kavan - 03/03/15 at 07:09 AM CT

With Harley Lond still a bit behind, I will take over partial duty on the new releases blog. The main movies will be covered while the Harley will provide the write-up for the rest of the films late this week. Thank you for understanding!

Once again, the Oscar nominees continue to make their presence known - expect to see one or two each week for the foreseeable future. Otherwise we have the current (though not for long) top-grossing film of 2014 also making its debut - and it's so popular, apparently Amazon has ran out of Pre-Orders (or something) - so make sure to sign up for notifications (unless you really, really need it like right now - but why didn't you preorder it earlier you fool!).

First up is The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1. Jennifer Lawrence returns as everyone's favorite bow-wielding action heroine Katniss Everdeen. Whereas the first two films focused on events in a kill or be-killed arena - this time it's about the world at large. Katniss has become the face of a revolution and Plutarch Heavensbee (the late Philip Seymour Hoffman) and revolutionary president Jennifer Lawrence prepares for the revolution in the top action film of 2014, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part One. Alma Coin (Julianne Moore) want to make sure the people rally behind her. However, their efforts to turn her into that leader fail - until Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson) suggest sending her out into the field for some play-by-play of how this war is taking a human toll. Thus she is joined by an intrepid camera crew (led by an interestingly-coifed Natalie Dormer) and sets out to film the "real" war. Meanwhile, Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) has turned traitor and now gives interviews with Caesar Flickerman (Stanley Tucci) appealing Katniss and the rebels to give up. Needless to say, this doesn't play well with the people. And behind it all - the calm, collected and supremely evil President Snow (Donald Sutherland). This is more slow-moving than the first two - and many will say this Part 1 is all filler leading up to the more action-packed Part 2 - but I still found it a good film. Lawrence once again gives a quite human and powerful performance as Katniss and there are some surprisingly moving moments as the rebellion gains steam. It doesn't have the all-out action the first two have brought - but I find that a good thing and can't wait for the finale later this year.

Next is the Academy Award-nominated Foxcatcher. Based on the true-life story of millionaire John du Pont (Steve Carrell) and wrestling brothers Mark (Channing Tatum) and David Schultz (Mark Ruffalo) - it is a dark tale, and has received a lot of praise - much going to Carrell for his transformation. Known for mostly comedic roles, he's anything but funny here - du Pont is a troubled man, trying to please his mother (Vanessa Redgrave) while looking for recognition from his peers as well. Needless to say, things don't go as planned and it all ends in tragedy. Not the most uplifting tale, but one I am keen to see for myself.


In the relentless thriller "Captive" (2012 -- Philippines), Isabelle Huppert brings passion and courage to her portrayal of a hostage caught in a seemingly hopeless situation. At a beach resort in the Philippines, 20 guests are kidnapped by an Islamic separatist group fighting for their independence. French social worker Therese Bourgoine is among those taken to a jungle island, with the Filipino army in pursuit. As the captors and their hostages journey through dense jungle terrain, trying to avoid the bullets and artillery salvos fired indiscriminately at them, an unexpected bond grows between the kidnappers and hostages. Packaged in certified Green photo for Let's Kill Ward's Wife Forestry eco pack. From First Run Features ... In "Let's Kill Ward's Wife" (2014), starring Amy Acker, Patrick Wilson, Nicollette Sheridan, Scott Foley, Greg Grunberg and Donald Faison, everyone hates Ward's wife and wants her dead. Especially Ward (Donald Faison). But when murderous fantasies accidentally get real, Ward and his pals have all new problems: Disposing of the body. Getting away with murder. Making their 3 p.m. tee time. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc from Well Go USA ... "Exterminators of the Year 3000" (1983), starring Robert Iannucci, Alicia Moro, Luciano Pigozzi, Eduardo Fajardo, is an Italian-made exploitation classic set in a post-apocalyptic future where the earth is a desert and water is the most precious substance of all. A band of survivors must turn to a mysterious stranger to battle a ruthless gang of motorcycle psychos for control of the wasteland and the water. Making its Blu-ray debut from Shout! Factory ... In "To Write Love on Her Arms" (2014), starring Kat Dennings, Chad Michael Murray, Rupert Friend and Corbin Bleu, Dennings stars as Renee, a Florida girl who struggles with addiction and abuse. In a creative blend of artistic fantasy and music conflicted with hard reality, Renee discovers the value of genuine friendships and embarks on a daunting yet courageous journey towards recovery with a vision of hope, healing and redemption. Based on the true story that started a global movement. A portion of net proceeds will be donated to the To Write Love On Her Arms non-profit organization. From Sony ... photo for Innocence In "Innocence" (2014), starring Sophie Curtis, Kelly Reilly, Graham Phillips, 16-year-old Beckett, haunted by the death and dreams of her beloved mother in a Montauk surfing accident, moves with her novelist father to Manhattan, where they attempt to piece together their shattered lives. Enrolled at an exclusive preparatory school, Beckett's psychosis and hallucinations intensify with the dubious suicides of current and past students and the subsequent discovery that her new school may be run by a coven of beautiful and seductive women who perpetuate their youth by drinking the blood of virgins. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc from Anchor Bay ... Desperate, broke, and out of ideas, four college seniors start a fake charity to embezzle money for tuition in "Believe Me" (2014), starring Alex Russell, Zachary Knighton, Johanna Braddy, Miles Fisher, Sinqua Walls, Max Adler, Nick Offerman and Christopher McDonald. From Virgil Films.


  • "The Last of Robin Hood" (2014): Kevin Kline, Dakota Fanning, Susan Sarandon, Sean Flynn, Max Casella. Errol Flynn, the swashbuckling Hollywood star and notorious ladies man, flouted convention all his life, but never more brazenly than in his last years when, swimming in vodka and unwilling to face his mortality, he undertook a liaison with an aspiring actress, Beverly Aadland. The two had a high-flying affair that spanned the globe and was enabled by the girl's fame-obsessed mother, Florence. It all came crashing to an end in October 1959, when events forced the relationship into the open, sparking an avalanche of publicity castigating Beverly and her mother-- which only fed Florence's need to stay in the spotlight. On DVD, Blu-ray from Samuel Goldwyn for Life Partners

  • "Life Partners" (2014): Leighton Meester, Gillian Jacobs, Adam Brody. Straight Paige (Jacobs) and lesbian Sasha (Meester) are co-dependent best friends in their late 20s who have spent the last 10 years acting more like wives than friends: they talk to each other on the toilet; they drive each other to the doctor. And as with any good marriage, they're a perfect yin and yang. Until the night Paige meets Tim (Brody). Despite some superficial drawbacks, he's the kind of guy you marry. As Paige and Tim's relationship grows, the bond between Paige and Sasha inevitably shifts. Suddenly without a “partner,” Sasha is left to examine her own shortcomings and panic about her impending 30th birthday. Passive-aggressive conflict brews in their friendship until the girls must finally confront the question they've been avoiding: can their friendship survive growing up? On DVD, Blu-ray from Magnolia Home Entertainment.


Mario Lopez is back as everyone's favorite dog, Zeus, in the latest installment of the heart-warming family franchise "The Dog Who Saved Easter" (2015). When a rival business puts Zeus' daycare in jeopardy, it's up to him, with the help of his canine companions, to save the day. Co-stars Dean Cain, Elisa Donovan, Beverley Mitchell, Patrick Muldoon, Catherine Hicks and Mindy Sterling. From Lionsgate ... "The Beginner's Bible" (2014) is a single disc with three animated Bible stories: "The Story of Easter," "The Story of Moses" and "The Story of the Nativity." $9.95 from StarVista Entertainment/Time Life.


"CHiPs: The Complete Third Season" (1979-80) is a five-disc set with 24 episodes, $29.98 from Warner ... "Da Vinci's Demons: The Complete Second Season" (2014) is the Starz Original series follows the "adventures" of scientific and literary genius Leonardo da Vinci as he travels to South America, Naples, and Turkey in his quest to find answers. The second season begins as Florence is thrown into chaos in the wake of the Pazzi conspiracy and da Vinci must photo for Da Vinci's Demons: The Complete Second Season push the limits of his mind and body to defend the city against the forces of Rome. When the dust settles, friends are buried and rivalries enflamed. While the Medicis go to unthinkable lengths to deal with new threats, da Vinci continues on his quest to find the fabled Book of Leaves and uncover the secret history of his mother. He'll come to realize that he has lethal competition in his quest -- new enemies who may be even worse than the forces of Pope Sixtus. Three-disc DVD: $44.98, three-disc Blu-ray: $54.99, from Anchor Bay ... "Longmire: The Complete Third Season" (2014) is a two-disc set with 10 episodes, $39.98 from Warner ... "Outlander: Season 1, Volume 1" (2014) is a two-disc set with all eight episodes of the STARZ series about a WWII nurse who, while on a second honeymoon with her husband, finds herself inexplicably transported back in time to Scotland, circa 1743. Based on Diana Gabaldon's best-selling book series. A Limited Collector's Edition features a 32-page book with excerpts from the scripts, photographs and an introduction from author Diana Gabaldon. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc from Sony ... "Transporter: The Series – The Complete First Season" (2012) is a four-disc set with 12 episodes of the series based on the hugely popular films that follows British ex-commando Frank Martin -- a high-stakes courier who delivers dangerous cargo -- to exotic locations, where he deals with clients whose business is top-secret. Although he swears never to learn the truth about his deliveries, he often breaks that code, putting his life at even greater risk. From Fox.

Check out other March 3-9 DVD releases and reviews at OnVideo.


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