Box Office Buz: DVD and Blu-ray releases for April 11, 2017
With the warm temperatures we are also seeing a hot spike in the number of releases on store shelves this week! Some top tier Oscar titles, some killer catalog and lots more. These are your new releases for April 11, 2017.
First up this week is Lion. The always remarkable Dev Patel plays Saroo, a young man adopted as a small child by John and Sue Brierley (David Wenham and Nicole Kidman). Although he grew up in a loving and prosperous home in Tasmania, Saroo is plagued by memories of his lost family and starts an exhaustive search for them as he recalls his early years before he was adopted when he found himself lost 1500 miles away from his home.
I have always found Dev Patel to be a very charismatic and convincing actor. With every new role I find him more and more captivating. And Lion is one of his most moving roles yet. The feature film debut of director Garth Davis, Lion is a sweeping time shifting tale of a young man’s journey to find his own history as well as his story as a young boy when he accidentally got separated from his family and eventually found his way to the foster home that took him in. Both stories are heart-wrenching and beautifully written, shot and acted. Lion is a phenomenal film that was more than deserving of the accolades heaped on it. I can’t recommend it highly enough.
Next up is another Oscar contender, Hidden Figures. In the 1960’s the race between the United States and Russia to be the first to put a man into space was reaching fever pitch. Determined to find all the best people to make the incredibly difficult calculations to make the seemingly impossible happen, NASA finds an untapped pool of talent in a group of African-American female mathematicians who end up being the essential force behind America’s space race.
Based on a fascinating true story, Hidden Figures stars Taraji P. Henson, Janelle Monáe and Octavia Spencer in her Oscar-Nominated role as the three lead women who changed the fate of America’s history. The three real women, Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson and Katherine Johnson broke all kinds of gender and race barriers and ended up being true American heroes for their contributions to NASA. All three women are extraordinary here with a brilliantly sharp script and direction and a killer supporting cast including Kevin Costner, Kirsten Dunst, Jim Parsons, and Mahershala Ali. A fascinating history lesson that finally gives these women the recognition they deserve.
Lastly this month is one of my favorite 80s gems finally seeing the light of day on Blu-ray, House. William Katt stars as Roger Cobb, a Vietnam Vet and horror novelist whose career is taking a nosedive after the tragic disappearance of his son. When his Aunt dies and leaves him her old house, Roger moves in to find solitude to write but soon finds out there are many other beings living in the house as well, some right out of Roger’s own nightmares.
House is a horror comedy and hits every note perfectly from both genres. William Katt of TV’s The Greatest American Hero is fantastic here and really makes me wonder why he didn’t have a higher profile career. Director Steve Miner (Switched at Birth, Friday the 13th Part II, Halloween H2O) does a brilliant job of balancing the scary bits with the hilarious bits with some great practical effects, some spot on deadpan humor, a great pace and actually a really great story arc. Add in a great turn from George Wendt as Roger’s curious neighbor and you have a fantastically fun 80s gem that is not to be missed. And thanks to the folks at Arrow Video, House is being packaged with its sequel, House II: The Second Story starring Arye Gross. While not quite at the level of House, House II: The Second Story is actually a damn fine sequel with plenty more laughs. Great to see these classics hitting Blu-ray.
Also of note this week is the family movie Monster Trucks, the long lost Canadian horror flick Cathy’s Curse, and National Geographic’s thrilling event series Mars.
Until next week movie lovers.
DVD and Blu-ray Releases for Tuesday April 11, 2017
100 Girls By Bunny Yeager*
Caltiki The Immortal Monster*
Daughters of the Dust*
Dead or Alive Trilogy*
Django, Prepare a Coffin*
Don Cherry: Rock ‘em Sock ‘em Hockey 28
Empire State of the Dead
Father Knows Best: Season Five
Greek: Chapter Six – Season Four
Guardian of Hell aka The Other Hell*
House: Two Stories Limited Edition*
Is Genesis History?
Jess Franco’s Marquise De Sade Uncut
Mariah’s World: Season One
Mars: The Series
Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir: It’s Ladybug!
Never Too Young to Die*
Silicon Valley: The Complete Third Season
Tangled: Before Ever After
The Alley Cat
The Blackout Experiments
The Devil in White
The Phantasm Collection*
The Umbrellas of Cherbourg* - Criterion Collection
The Young Girls of Rochefort* - Criterion Collection
Veep: The Complete Fifth Season
War on Everyone
*Catalog Blu-ray debut