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FEATURE ARTICLE

New Blu's On the Block - May 1, 2012

 

Rating: Various

Distributor: Various

Released: May 1, 2012

 

Written by Sara Michelle Fetters

 

Editor-in-Chief
www.moviefreak.com

New Blu's On the Block
Blu-ray and DVD Releases for May 1, 2012

It’s a very catalog heavy first week of May as far as new releases are concerned. At the same time, one of my favorite films of 2012 also hits shelves today and as far I’m concerned that’s nothing to scoff about. In fact, I might do a couple backflips and let out a few shouts of joy; the movie in question is just that good.

 

 

Haywire

One of this year’s best movies, here’s what I wrote about this Steven Soderbergh directed ‘70s style throwback in January (read my full review here): “I’m not sure Soderbergh’s late 1960’s, early 1970’s visual and audio style will suit modern tastes, his forgoing of the quick cutting of Michael Bay enterprise or shaky-cam esthetics of a Peter Greengrass thriller will please the younger demographic. But here’s hoping it will because Haywire is a total kick in the pants, an enjoyable freestyle effort that swings violently back and forth with raucous enthusiasm, Soderbergh’s effort a signature sensation I’m sure I’ll be treasuring for the rest of the year.” For more on this film, check out my recently posted Blu-ray Review.

 

 

 

Men in Black

Men in Black II

No surprise here, what with a third chapter about to hit theatres, that Sony has decided to re-release the original, still wonderfully entertaining Men in Black to Blu-ray while also delivering the tepid, underwhelming sequel to the format for the first time as well. Both look and sound terrific, but in good conscience I can only recommend the giddily silly and beautifully witty first film, director Barry Sonnenfeld and actors Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith coming extremely close to hitting it out of the park.

 

 

Clueless

Amy Heckerling’s (Fast Times at Ridgemont High) awesome 1995 update of Jane Austen’s Emma starring Alicia Silverstone is just as fantastic today as it was back during its original release, and while it isn’t quite as new or as groundbreaking (the legions of imitators it spawned took care of that) as it once was that doesn’t make it any less essential. Paramount’s new Blu-ray release, in honor of their 100th anniversary, isn’t filled with any new bells or whistles but it certainly looks and sounds terrific, and with the low price point it’s going to be hard for diehard fans from keeping themselves from making the upgrade.

 

 

Pillow Talk – Universal 100th Anniversary

Speaking of 100th anniversaries, here’s another release celebrating Universal Picture’s centennial, and I do have to say up to this point the studio is doing a bang-up job it. While I’m not the biggest fan of either Doris Day or Rock Hudson, even I have to admit this romantic comedy is one of the finest the genre ever had to offer, and to say I can’t wait to get a look at Universal’s hi-def restoration would be understating the facts immensely.

 

 

New Year’s Eve

Speaking of romantic comedies, here’s an incredibly dreadful all-star effort that’s even worse than anything I could have ever imagined or had nightmares about before heading into the theatre to give it a look. As I wrote last December (read my full review here): “I’m sure New Year’s Eve will show up on the Cable television rotation and plenty of viewers will tune in, and I’m equally as certain there are tons of people out there excited about catching the one-time director of Pretty Woman and The Flamingo Kid’s latest in a theatre. I just can’t imagine any of them are going to be all that thrilled after it’s over, this holiday-themed affair hardly a celebration worthy of confetti, kissing or any sort of exclamation, positive or negative, whatsoever.”

 

 

Joyful Noise

From my January theatrical review (read it here): “I have a decided love-hate relationship with Joyful Noise…When the movie sings it hits notes bordering on the divine; sadly, it just doesn’t hit enough of them to make the finished flick nothing more than a prayer for greatness frustratingly left unanswered.”

 

 

Jeremiah Johnson

Sydney Pollack’s excellent 1973 sorta-Western featuring a superb Robert Redford performance gets the Blu-ray treatment. An underrated gem deserving of being rediscovered by today’s audiences.

 

 

W.E.

Here’s what I wrote about this one in my theatrical review (read it here): “As a pure experiment in superficial artifice, Madonna’s directorial sophomore effort W.E. is spectacular. From Arianne Phillips’ Academy Award-nominated costumes, to Hagen Bogdanski’s suitably glossy cinematography, to Martin Childs’ sumptuous production design, the movie is as immaculately detailed and designed as anything a person is ever likely to see, the final product an eye-popping extravaganza of opulence that’s borderline extraordinary…Too bad the movie is a fatuous piece of crap because if it were anything even remotely dramatically passable there might be something worthwhile to talk about.”

 

OTHER NOTABLE RELEASES

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·         About a Boy

·         Believe in Me

·         Bird of Paradise

·         Definitely, Maybe (Read Sara’s Theatrical Review)

·         Masterpiece Classic: The Mystery of Edwin Drood

·         Meet Joe Black

·         Mimic: Three-Film Set (Read Mitchell’s Blu-Ray Review)

·         The Tim Burton Collection

·         The Wizard of Gore / The Gore Gore Girls

 

 

NOTABLE DVD RELEASES

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A Woman of Substance Trilogy

Propelled by star-studded casts and rich period detail, these brilliant adaptations of Barbara Taylor Bradford’s bestselling novels bring to life two of her most unforgettable heroines. The beloved trilogy that begins with Emma Harte’s remarkable rise from servant girl to international retailing magnate comes full circle when Emma’s granddaughter must struggle against powerful enemies to keep the family’s corporate empire from collapsing. From beginning to end, these are inspiring stories of love, power, and determination. (Description reprinted from Amazon.com)

 

OTHER NOTABLE DVD RELEASES

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·         Covert Affairs: Season Two

·         Felicity: Season One

·         Felicity: Season Two

·         The Invisible Man: The Complete Series

·         Ralphie May: Too Big Too Ignore

·         Suits: Season One

·         Who Do You Think You Are?: Season 2

 

 

NOTABLE NEW BLU-RAY ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

 

    

 

·         Grand Duel / Keoma (May 15, 2012)

·         Love Never Dies (May 29, 2012)

·         John Carter (June 5, 2012)

·         The Deep Blue Sea (July 24, 2012)

·         The Island of Dr. Moreau (1996) (July 24, 2012)

·         Cinderella – Diamond Edition (Oct. 2, 2012)

 

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