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Nov 25, 2008

THIS WEEK'S BLU-RAY AND DVD RELEASES

Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Hope you all enjoy the turkey, but even more so, the Black Friday shopping sales.

Word on the street has it that many places, Wal-Mart and Target for example, are going to have stellar Blu-Ray and DVD title deals -- Blu-Rays up to and beyond 50% off, and DVDs for only $1.99!

This week's high-profile release is Sony's HANCOCK with Will Smith and Charlize Theron available on both Blu-Ray and DVD. Expect the discs to be jam packed with extras. The movie was a moderate hit at the box office, so should fair well and probably better on disc.

Other movies from this summer include Fox's box office disaster, MEET DAVE with Eddie Murphy and the animated SPACE CHIMPS. Both titles are on Blu-Ray and DVD.

From last year's holiday season comes another box office failure, this time it's Vince Vaughn in FRED CLAUS from Warner Bros. This movie comes just in time to see Vaughn in another holiday film, FOUR CHRISTMASES which if I'm not mistaken is either out this week or next. Maybe it's been so long that people will have forgotten the poor reception of FRED CLAUS -- then again, maybe not.

Warner Premiere's direct-to-DVD animated film SUPERMAN: DOOMSDAY hits Blu-Ray for the first time, and is available in a new special edition on standard DVD.

Other big Blu-Rays this week include Peter Berg's THE KINGDOM (no doubt Universal cashing in on Berg's HANCOCK release), Sam Mendes' JARHEAD, and a double pack of JARHEAD/THE KINGDOM. As well look for the 1964 film BECKET starring Richard Burton and Peter O'Toole which is a fantastic film with 2 screen legends.

On a surprise note, somehow Canada is getting a release of THE TUDORS, both season 1 and season 2 on Blu-Ray this week. Season 2 doesn't hit shelves in the US until January, and same goes for the Blu-Ray of season 1. They may be getting THE TUDORS on disc before the US, but then again, they're cursed with having to live in Canada (which I can safely attest to as I have lived in both places -- U! S! A!).

Standard DVD also has a few titles to be aware of. First off, Criterion is releasing a 2 disc edition of BOTTLE ROCKET and a single disc edition of THE SPY WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD with Richard Burton. Criterion was going to issue a Blu-Ray of BOTTLE ROCKET as well, but it has been delayed until December 16 along with other Criterion Blu-Ray titles.

MGM is releasing a massive PINK PANTHER COLLECTION. I believe the set is 15 discs and contains all the feature films (including the recent remake with Steve Martin) with the exception of one - THE RETURN OF THE PINK PANTHER as the rights are owned by another studio -- and a collection of the animated shorts. That is 9 feature films, and a whole lot of great vintage cartoons.

I also want to spotlight a great 1972 film that is coming to DVD for the first time, and that is Martin Ritt's SOUNDER starring Cicely Tyson and Paul Winfield (Captain Terrell in STAR TREK II and the L.A. police precinct captain in THE TERMINATOR) both of whom were nominated for Oscars (but 1972 was the year of the THE GODFATHER, very tough competition). This movie was a memorable one from my childhood and holds astoundingly well. Definitely worth checking out.

The biggest release on the TV side is Fox's recently aired 24: REDEMPTION in a special "Creator's cut". Should be enough to tide you over until the next season...especially given the fact that last year was 24-less.

Also out is THE COLBERT REPORT: A COLBERT CHRISTMAS - THE GREATEST GIFT OF ALL, BEVERLY HILLS 90210 (original show of course) - Season 6, FAMILY AFFAIR - Complete Series, GOMER PYLE, USMC - Season 5 and THE MOD SQUAD - Season 2 Volume 1.

Happy viewing (that is between Turkey and football games).

BLU-RAY

· Beckett
· Flesh for the Beast
· Fred Claus
· George Carlin: It’s Bad For Ya
· Hancock
· IMAX Super Speedway
· Jarhead
· Jarhead/The Kingdom
· The Kingdom
· The Line
· Meet Dave
· Space Chimps
· Superman: Doomsday

· The Tudors – Season 1 (Canada only)
· The Tudors – Season 2 (Canada only)

DVD

· Another Life
· Auto Recovery
· Birthday
· Border
· Bottle Rocket (2 Disc Criterion #450)
· Dead of Winter
· Fred Claus
· Half Broken Things
· Hancock
· Just Sex and Nothing Else
· Kemper: The Co-Ed Killer
· Lady With the Dog
· Life the Way It Is
· Loud Mouth Soup
· Madhouse
· The Spy Who Came In From the Cold (Criterion #452)
· Meet Dave
· Merlin and the War of the Dragons
· Misty
· Orthodox Stance
· Part-Time Work of a Domestic Slave
· A Perfect Day
· The Pink Panther Ultimate Collection (The Pink Panther [1963]; A Shot in the Dark; Inspector Clouseau; The Pink Panther Strikes Again; Revenge of the Pink Panther; Trail of the Pink Panther; Curse of the Pink Panther; Son of the Pink Panther; The Pink Panther [2006]; Pink Panther Cartoon Classics Volumes 1-9)
· Psychic Killer
· The Ron Howard Spotlight Collection (Apollo 13; Backdraft; A Beautiful Mind; Cinderella Man)
· Santa and Pete
· Slap Shot 3: The Junior League
· Sounder
· Space Chimps
· Still Life
· Superman: Doomsday (2 Disc Special Edition)
· Tantrums and Tiaras
· Two Front Teeth
· Two Tigers
· Vanessa

TV ON DVD

· Beverly Hills 90210 – Season 6
· The Big Easy – Season 2
· The Colbert Report: A Colbert Christmas – The Greatest Gift of All
· The Doris Day Show – Complete Series
· Elton John: Tantrums and Tiaras
· Family Affair – Complete Series
· Freaks and Geeks – Yearbook Edition (Reissue)
· George Carlin: It’s Bad For Ya
· Gomer Pyle, USMC – Season 5
· Herod’s Last Tomb (National Geographic)
· Larry the Cable Guy’s Star Studded Christmas Extravaganza
· Maiden Voyage: Ocean Hijack
· The Mod Squad – Season 2, Volume 1
· Profoundly Normal
· Raging Hormones
· The Red Skelton Show: The Ultimate Collection
· Resilience
· Santa & Pete
· Super Dave – Super Stunt Spectacular, Volume 1 (Canada only)
· Torchy, The Battery Boy – Series 1
· Torchy, The Battery Boy – Series 2
· The Town That Banned Christmas
· 24: Redemption - Special Creator’s Cut
· 2008 World Series – Philadelphia Phillies Vs. Tampa Bay Rays