ZERO DARK THIRTY wasn’t completely shunned by the Academy last month, it won one Oscar (for Best Sound Editing), but Kathryn Bigelow’s thriller about the hunt for Osama Bin Laden still seemed to get a chilly reception. You know, because of the whole torture thing. Folks who missed it in its theatrical run can make up their own minds about its supposed political stance today as it releases on Blu Ray and DVD.
The film is highly recommended (it’s #10 on The Film Babble Blog Top 10 Movies of 2012), but if you’re looking to purchase it, I’d wait for a different edition as there are no Special Features to speak of in the standard Blu-ray/DVD Combo + UltraViolet Digital Copy package. Surely, a deluxe version with commentary, featurettes, etc. will come out later. So just rent it for now.
A beautiful movie that was completely shunned by the Academy, but still got its share of awards season love, also arrives today on Blu ray/DVD: Jacques Audiard’s RUST AND BONE (read my review). Special features: a commentary with Audiard and screenwriter Thomas Bidegain, “Making RUST AND BONE: A Film by Antonin Peretkatko,” a batch of deleted scenes, and a few featurettes.
A divisive musical epic if there ever was one, LES MISÉRABLES is out today (2-Disc Combo Pack: Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy + UltraViolet/1 Disc DVD) with a bevy of Special Features, including Commentary with director Tom Hooper, a few featurettes, and a mini-documentary entitled “The Original Masterwork: Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables.”
Another release today that fans may want to skip over for a better future edition is THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY (3-Disc Blu-ray, DVD, UltraViolet Digital Copy). Peter Jackson’s epic, ridiculously the first of a new trilogy, is outfitted with a fair amount of extra fluff: game trailers, video blogs, and the featurette “New Zealand: Home of Middle Earth.” None of this stuff looks very essential, so yeah, wait a few years for the grand box of all three HOBBIT monstrosities.
For those who thought Judd Apatow’s THIS IS 40 wasn't long enough at it 141 minutes, its new Blu ray (2-Disc, Digital Copy, etc.) has hours more of that Apatow family fun. The extensive Special Features: the unrated edition, deleted scenes (extended and alternate as well), “Bodies by Jason” commercial, and eight featurettes: “The Making of THIS IS 40,” “This is Albert Brooks (At Work),” “Graham Parker & the Rumour: Long Emotional Ride,” “Brooks-O-Rama,” “Biking with Barry,” “Triumph the Insult Comic Dog,” “Kids on the Loose 3” and a “Fresh Air with Terry Gross” segment. Whew!
On the re-mastered re-issue front there’s the new Criterion Collection edition of Terrence Malick’s 1973 classic BADLANDS. Malick’s impressive debut, which concerned Martin Sheen and Sissy Spacek as a young outlaw couple on the run in Dakota, is now decked out with a New 4K digital restoration (with uncompressed monaural soundtrack), “Charles Starkweather” (a 1993 episode of Great Crimes and Trials), Making BADLANDS (a new 42-minute documentary featuring the actors), new interview with editor Billy Weber, new interview with producer Edward Pressman, and booklet featuring an essay by filmmaker Michael Almereyda. Now, that looks like an essential package!
Also out today as part of the Criterion Collection is Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s 1943 classic THE LIFE AND DEATH OF COLONEL BLIMP. This is one I definitely have to check out as it features a commentary with the late Powell (1905-1990) and Martin Scorsese.