February Blu-ray Releases
February 6, 2014
In the midst of this unpredictable winter, I present to you this month’s offerings on Blu-ray. It’s a perfect excuse to avoid the weather and check out what’s happening in the way of new releases.
In terms of recent theatrically released films making their way to Blu-ray, here are some of the titles you’ll find. These include the time-travel dramedy About Time (***);
Clint Eastwood & Hilary Swank in Million Dollar Baby
the Schwarzenegger-Stallone pairing, Escape Plan (not screened); 2014 Oscar nominees Dallas Buyer’s Club (***), Gravity (*** ½) and Nebraska (*** ½); the Lance Armstrong expose The Armstrong Lie (not screened); the sci-fi opus Ender’s Game (**); the biopic of the Princess of Wales, Diana (not screened); director Ridley Scott’s latest The Counselor (* ½); the lost at sea drama All is Lost (*** ½); the acclaimed documentary The Crash Reel (not reviewed); 2013 Cannes film festival winner Blue is the Warmest Color (*** ½); last fall’s animated Free Birds (not screened); the sequel The Best Man’s Holiday (not screened); the latest version of Romeo and Juliet (not screened); Thor: The Dark World (**) and the indie comedy Austenland (not screened).
Looks like lots of films are getting the anniversary treatment this month. Among those deluxe editions are a 40th anniversary edition of Death Wish (***); a 10th anniversary edition of Napoleon Dynamite (***); a 10th anniversary edition of Million Dollar Baby (*** ½); a Diamond edition of the 2002 Oscar winner Chicago (***) and a 20th anniversary edition of The Shadow (**).
Liam Neeson in Dark Man, 1990
Criterion is certainly going to be busy with its nifty upgrades on critically acclaimed films. This month’s offerings include Francois Truffaut’s Jules and Jim (*** ½); Steven Soderbergh’s 1993 drama King of the Hill (*** ½); Jean Luc Goodard’s Breathless (*** ½); Roman Polanski’s 1979 adaptation of the acclaimed novel Tess of the d’Urbervilles, Tess (*** ½) and Wes Anderson’s animated feature The Fantastic Mr. Fox (***).
Warner Brothers will be opening their vaults and issuing several titles released during the last two decades. These include City of Angels (** ½) and Stop-Loss (not screened).
Finally, the video company Scream/Shout Factory, are essentially doing the same thing as Criterion albeit with the exception that the company’s releases are cult classics instead of critically acclaimed fare, have a few new offerings in February. These include a deluxe edition of Sam Raimi’s Darkman (***), a double feature of the 80s horror faves Bad Dreams(*1/2)and Visiting Hours(**), and single releases of Witchboard (*1/2)and Night of the Demons (not screened).
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