New to Blu-ray, in a 3D Blu-ray/Blu-ray/DVD combo pack, from VVS films is the latest attempt at rebooting the Texas Chainsaw Massacre series, this time by making a direct sequel to the 1974 original and ignoring all the sequels that came after, “Texas Chainsaw 3D”. After the rights for the series lapsed from Michael Bay’s Platinum Dunes production company, after 2 very lackluster remakes, and back to the original rights holders, the concept behind Texas Chainsaw 3D was launched. The intentions were to reboot the series all over again and producing a string of follow-ups each year in same vein as the “Saw” films.
Texas Chainsaw 3D
Directed by John Luessenhop
Texas Chainsaw 3D continues the legendary story of the homicidal Sawyer family, picking up where Tobe Hooper’s 1974 horror classic left off in Newt, Texas. Decades later and hundreds of miles away from the original massacre, a young woman named Heather (more…)
Written by Jay Anthony White
Directed by David A. Armstrong
New to DVD and Blu-ray exclusively from Anchor Bay Entertainment Canada and Indiecan Entertainment is the newest addition to the found footage horror genre that takes into the halls of a rundown asylum that may house the spirits of the deceased with Grave Encounters 2. The first Grave Encounters came out of nowhere and became an improbable hit so the question remains that with an increased budget and backing can the sequel deliver as much as the original did?
Grave Encounters 2
Starring: Richard Harmon, Sean Rogerson, Leanne Lapp, Dylan Playfair, Stephanie Bennett and Howard Lai
Written by The Vicious Brothers
Directed by John Poliquin
In 2011 the found footage horror film Grave Encounters about a ghost hunting TV crew being haunted to their apparent deaths in an abandoned mental institute became an internet and festival sensation. In the sequel Grave Encounters 2 Alex (Harmon), (more…)
Written by David Magee based on the novel by Yann Martel
Directed by Ang Lee
Fresh offof director Ang Lee`s best directing Oscar win, Fox Home Entertainment brings Life of Pi to DVD and Blu-ray. The tale of faith and perseverance was a 4 year passion project for most involved, director Ang Lee no exception as he jumped in both feet first. The worldwide smash cost hundreds of millions to finally bring the book many thought was ‘un-filmable’ to the screen. So how will the grand spectacle transfer over to the small screen?
Brother Bear and Brother Bear 2
Brother Bear directed by Aaron Blaise and Robert Walker
Brother Bear 2 directed by Ben Gluck
New this week from Disney is a handful of 3 disc Blu-ray Double Features, one of which is for the Disney animated film Brother Bear and its direct to video sequel Brother Bear 2. When Brother Bear came out in 2003, during what some regard as the ‘lean years ‘of Disney animation when Pixar dominated everything they produced, it was bumped from the traditional Disney summer release slot in favor of the immensely popular Finding Nemo. Making its way to a double feature Blu-ray with its sequel for the first time, the question remains is it worth the purchase price?
Mulan Double Feature Blu-ray
Mulan 1 and 2
Mulan directed by Tony Bancroft and Barry Cook
New this week from Disney is a handful of 3 disc Blu-ray Double Features, one of which is for the Disney classic Mulan and its direct to video sequel Mulan 2. Mulan is the classic story of a girl risking it all, her life and family honor, because she wants to protect her father. For the first time available as a double Blu-ray set, the question remains is the set worth your hard earned dollars?
New to DVD and Blu-ray from Anchor Bay Entertainment is the revenge thriller “Girls Against Boys”. The newest film from writer/director Austin Chick, Girls against boys features Danielle Panabaker in a rare bad girl role after she takes drastic actions after a sexual assault is not followed up on accordingly by the police. So how does Girls Against Boys hold up to other twisted tales of revenge?
Girls Against Boys
Written and Directed by Austin Chick
After Shae (Panabaker), a college student that is having an affair with an older married man, is assaulted by several men in a matter of days she reaches her breaking point. Shae is drawn into co-worker Lu’s (LaLiberte) twisted plan for revenge against all men. (more…)
Skyfall Blu-ray (2013)
Directed by Sam Mendes
Now available on DVD and Blu-ray from Fox Home Entertainment is the latest entry in theJames Bond saga, Skyfall. Ian Fleming’s iconic creation celebrates its 50th year in film with this new entry. Starring the enigmatic and some argue best bond of the series, Daniel Craig, Skyfall doesn’t just serve to continue the series as much as reboot the franchise around Craig in order to establish Bond for another 50 year run, or so Fox and MGM studios hope.
In Skyfall, James Bond’s (Craig) loyalty to M (Dench) is tested as her past returns to haunt her. We open in the middle of an important lifesaving operation that goes drastically wrong. (more…)
A Simple Life Blu-Ray Review
Written by Susan Chan and Yan Lam Lee
Directed by Ann Hui
New on Blu-ray February 26 from Well Go USA is the multi-award winning drama about a lifelong servant and the relationship she develops after a life altering incident: A Simple Life. The film stars Andy Lau and Deanie Ip in a tale that covers many similar themes to director Michael Haneke’s Amour, but from a much less dour place, as this film is a mostly about the blossoming of their relationship that is years old but has never fully developed into the family it becomes.
Roger (Lau) is a successful movie producer. Ah Tao (Ip) has worked for Roger’s family as a nanny and maid over the course of four (more…)
New to DVD and Blu-ray from Anchor Bay Entertainment is the latest action opus from former wrestler turned actor ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin and “Expendables” star Dolph Lundgren, “The Package”. The Package is directed by veteran stuntman turned director Jesse V. Johnson, so it should come as no surprise that the film is heavy on action and stunt work and light on plot. But how does the film measure up to other action fare in the Stone Cold/Dolph Lundgren cannon?
The Package Blu-Ray Review
Written by Derek Kolstad
Directed by Jesse V. Johnson
The Sessions Blu-ray Review
Written and Directed by Ben Lewin, based on the original article by Mark O’Brien
New to Blu-ray and DVD from Fox Home Entertainment is the inspiring true story of Mark O’Brien in The Sessions. The biopic is the brainchild of writer/director Ben Lewin, himself suffering from polio as a child which has resulted in him requiring crutches to maneuver with for the rest of his life. The similarities between Lewin and O’Brien’s backgrounds gave Lewin a unique and experienced vision in which to craft the film.
Paralyzed and confined to an iron lung since childhood after being stricken by polio, poet-journalist Mark O’Brien (Hawkes) (more…)
Written by Douglas Schulze and Joshua Wagner
Directed by Douglas Schulze
Mimesis, the word meaning ‘mimicry’ or ‘imitation’, is the beginning of what the filmmakers hope to be a series of films in which the premise is that a group of ‘thrill seekers’ set out to recreate classic horror films and play them out their way. The first of these films, Mimesis: Night of the Living Dead, comes to DVD and Blu-Ray Feb 10 from Anchor Bay Entertainment.
Peter Pan Diamond Collection Blu-Ray
The classic animated feature film from Disney, Peter Pan, hits its 60th ‘Diamond’ anniversary this year and celebrates with a brand new, fully loaded Blu-ray release in stores this week. The timeless tale of Peter and his ‘lost boys’ in considered one of the greats from Disney’s golden age of hand drawn animation and is based on the 100 year old stage play from Sir J.M. Barrie. As a young child, Walt Disney saw a travelling production of the play and it stayed with him for decades until he was finally able to produce his own version.
The story has been told many times. (more…)
New this week on DVD and Blu-Ray from Anchor Bay Entertainment is the crime drama/thriller “Officer Down”. The story of a once corrupt cop now trying to walk the straight and narrow path packs a stellar cast for director Miller, a veteran of the direct to DVD action scene, led by Stephen Dorff and James Woods.
Officer Down Blu-Ray Review
Written by John Chase
Directed by Brian A. Miller
The story of “Officer Down” begins a year prior, when a boozy, cocaine addicted dirty cop, David ‘Cal’ Callahan (Dorff), was shot in a shakedown gone wrong. (more…)
Making its debut on Blu-Ray this week from Anchor Bay Entertainment is the 2004 filmLightning Bug. The story of a young special effects wizard in a small town, Lightning Bug has been out on DVD for years, but Anchor Bay has now gone back and remastered the film to reissue it on Blu-ray. Based on the true story of writer/director Robert Hall’s own life, the make-up effects master behind almost 90 different projects according to IMDB, the real question is how does the now 8 year old film hold up to a Blu-ray transfer and is the film any good?
Lightning Bug Blu-Ray Review
Written and directed by Robert Hall.
Green Graves (Harrison) is a frustrated teen, with a gift for creating grisly monsters, who dreams of one day escaping his miserable life in a small Alabama town for a special effects make-up job in Hollywood. His dreams may soon be in reach (more…)
New this week on DVD and Blu-Ray from Fox Home Entertainment comes the ‘Inspired by a true story’ of rebellion and revolution in the US school system “Won’t Back Down”. The story of two mother’s fight for a better education for their children seems to be ripped straight from the headlines and fodder for a splashy cable television movie. So was “Won’t Back Down” worth the theatrical release and Blu-Ray release it has gotten?
Won’t Back Down Blu-Ray Review
Written by Brin Hill and Daniel Barnz
Hard working single mom Jamie Fitzpatrick (Gyllenhaal) is concerned that John Adams Elementary is letting her daughter Malia (Lloyd) down. Teaming with a caring teacher (Davis) who wants the best future for her own son Cody (more…)