Monday 17 September 2012

The Good, the Bad and the Blu-rays

Finally, the big summer blockbusters are starting to arrive on DVD and Blu-ray, with this week's only major release being the biggest hit of them all.

Easily the biggest box office success of the year (even The Dark Knight Rises can't get close to its impressive $1.5 billion haul), Marvel Avengers Assemble arrives on blu-ray in a multitude of packages, including this massive six movie collection boxset, which isn't badly priced considering the popularity of the films included.

A fanboy pleasing superhero spectacular that proved that Marvel's calculated risk was well worth doing, it broke records in the cinema and it's going to break records on home formats too, meaning there's not an awful lot left for me to say except buy it.

Of course, if you're one of the few who didn't enjoy The Avengers/Avengers Assemble, there's always this beauty which is available to import. I'm guessing it's going to be a big pile of crap (it has an action sequence set in a mattress storeroom), but you've got to admire any superhero who thinks that two poorly applied diamonds of black make-up are an adequate disguise. That man has no fear.

I thoroughly enjoyed Jeff Who Lives At Home when it was released in cinemas, to the point where I described it as "the evolution of the stoner movie". I'm keen to watch it again on DVD to see if it holds up to repeat viewings, as the hostile chemistry between Jason Segal and Ed Helms gave this slacker comedy some really great moments.

I'm not sure I want to live in a world where Curtis '50 Cent' Jackson gets star billing ahead of two Oscar winners, but then maybe it's only a matter of time before Curtis has one of his own, eh? No, I don't think so either.

I didn't see the Elizabeth Olsen version of Silent House during its theatrical run, but I did see the Spanish language original and found the single shot/invaded house premise to be clever but heavily flawed. Still, Olsen is certainly a star in the rising, so maybe she can bring something to the concept that the original version was lacking.

If you're unfamiliar of the name Anton Corbijn, chances are that if you like black and white gothic music videos, you're sure to be familiar with his work. A man whose work as a photographer, video director and filmmaker I've admired for a long time, this documentary follows him during the making of his under-appreciated George Clooney starring spy thriller, The American. It has plenty of input from the bands he's worked with over the years (Metallica, Depeche Mode, U2), but it struggles to find any real depth, only scratching at the surface of the turmoils that drive this committed artist.

This may at first seem to be a crudely and quickly made knock-off of Sacha Baron Cohen's The Dictator, but National Lampoon's Ratko: The Dictator's Son (to give it its full title) has been around since 2009, although it's quite clear why it's surfacing now, the week before The Dictator sees its DVD release. Starring Napoleon Dynamite's Pedro, it does actually bear some similarities to the more recent, high profile comedy, but in reality it's a do-over of the Rodney Dangerfield classic Back to School, as the trailer quickly reveals.

No, your eyes did not deceive you, that was Principal Belding.

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