New to View: May 24
By Bob Bloom
The following Blu-rays and DVDs are being released on Tuesday, May 24, unless otherwise noted:
The Finest Hours (Blu-ray + digital HD)
Details: 2016, Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment
Rated: PG-13, sequences of intense danger
The lowdown: The film, based on one of the greatest rescues in the history of the Coast Guard, fails to complete captivate you because of its generic storytelling and lack of characterization.
While at sea, the movie keeps you riveted, but the sequences on land lull you to near boredom.
The film lacks emotional resonance and any really big moments that sweep you off your feet.
Technical aspects: 1080p high definition, 2.39:1 widescreen picture; English 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, English 2.0 audio descriptive track and French and Spanish 5.1 Dolby digital; English SDH, French and Spanish subtitles.
Don’t miss: The supplemental materials include a featurette on the life of the film’s hero, Bernie Webber; a featurette on the bonding of the cast members; deleted scenes; stars Chris Pine and Casey Affleck reflect on their respective crews; a Coast Guard member recounts a memorable rescue; and a featurette on the people who risk their lives to save others.
How to Be Single (Blu-ray + Ultraviolet)
Details: 2016, Warner Home Video
Rated: R, sexual content, language
The lowdown: A romantic comedy about single young men and women in New York searching the city for that elusive connection that could create a meaningful relationship or even love.
As the cast, featuring Dakota Johnson, Rebel Wilson, Leslie Mann, Anders Holm, Damon Wayans Jr., Alison Brie, Jake Lacy and Jason Mantzoukas, learn there’s a right way and a wrong way to be single.
The movie offers some laughs, but they are inconsistent and the plot remains too conventional.
Technical aspects: 1080p high definition, 2.40:1 (16×9 enhanced) widescreen picture; English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, English 5.1 Dolby digital descriptive audio track and French 5.1 Dolby digital; English SDH, French and Spanish subtitles.
Don’t miss: Extras include featurettes on Rebel Wilson, a pros and cons on how to be single and the humor of the film, deleted scenes, a gag reel and Wilson outtakes.
The Player: Special Edition (Blu-ray)
Details: 1992, The Criterion Collection
Rated: R, violence, language, sexual content
The lowdown: This savage Hollywood satire from director Robert Altman is a constant delight.
Tim Robbins stars as an amoral studio executive who kills a writer he believes is threatening him, then is blackmailed by an unknown person.
How Robbins’ weasels out of the situation and remains in power is one of the wicked joys of the movie, which features a strong supporting cast that includes Whoopi Goldberg, Peter Gallagher, Fred Ward, Greta Scacchi and a slew of big-name Hollywood A-listers.
Technical aspects: 1080p high definition, 1.85:1 widescreen picture; English 2.0 DTS-HD Master Audio; English SDH subtitles.
Don’t miss: Bonus offerings include a 1992 interview with Altman, a 1992 commentary track, interviews with author Michael Tolkin, Robbins, associated producer David Levy and production designer Stephen Altman; a 1992 Cannes Film Festival press conference with the cast and crew, a short documentary about the shooting of the movie’s fund-raising scene, a gallery dedicated to the many cameo appearances, deleted scenes and outtakes, the opening shot with alternate commentary by Altman, Tolkin and cinematographer Jean Lépine and an essay about the movie.
Song of Lahore
Release date: May 20
Details: 2015, Broad Green Pictures
Rated: PG, violent images, adult themes, smoking
The lowdown: A magical and musical documentary that follows Sachal Studios musicians from their Pakistani homeland to New York City, where they rehearse to perform with the Jazz at Lincoln Center orchestra.
Jazz great Wynton Marsalis had invited the group to the United States to perform.
The story is an inspirational look at how music is a language that can unite people and cultures.
Technical aspects: 1.78:1 widescreen picture; English 5.1 Dolby digital; English SDH subtitles.
Manhunter: Collector’s Edition (Blu-ray)
Details: 1986, Scream Factory
Rated: R, Not rated, violence, language
The lowdown: Before there was “The Silence of the Lambs,” director Michael Mann introduced filmgoers to Dr. Hannibal Lecktor in “Manhunter.”
William Petersen, who went on to star in “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” plays former FBI profiler Will Graham who returns to his old job to help track down a brutal serial killer known as “The Tooth Fairy.”
Reluctantly, Graham is forced to call on Lecktor (played by Brian Cox), the horrific killer who nearly cost him his life when he captured him, for insight on this new menace.
Tom Noonan plays Tooth Fairy. Joan Allen and Dennis Farina costar.
The film was adapted from Thomas Harris’ “Red Dragon,” and was remade in 2002 with Oscar-winner Anthony Hopkins reprising his role as Dr. Hannibal Lector, Edward Norton portraying Will Graham and Ralph Fiennes playing Tooth Fairy.
The set contains the theatrical release and a slightly longer director’s cut of the film.
Technical aspects: 1080p high definition, 2.35:1 widescreen picture; English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio; English subtitles.
Don’t miss: Bonus materials include new interviews with director of photography Dante Spinotti, Petersen, Noonan and Allen; a featurette, with interviews, on the movie’s music; a conversation with Spinotti, a featurette on the making of the film; and a commentary track.
Lou Grant: The Complete First Season
Details: 1977-78, Shout! Factory
Rated: Not rated
The lowdown: On “The Mary Tyler Moore” show, Ed Asner’s Lou Grant was a gruff, but comic, TV newsroom boss.
When Asner took his character to the “Los Angeles Tribune” newsroom, “Lou Grant” took on a more serious demeanor.
This DVD set features all 22 first-season episodes of this popular CBS series, which costars Mason Adams, Robert Walden and Nancy Marchand.
The series examined the inner workings of a newsroom as well as the many issues the newspaper and its reporters and editors covered.
Technical aspects: 1.33:1 full-screen picture; English Dolby digital.
Don’t miss: The main bonus feature is an interview with Asner.
Rise of the Legend (Blu-ray)
Details: 2014, Well Go USA Entertainment
Rated: Not rated
The lowdown: A martial artist with very special powers returns to the town where his father was murdered to exact revenge from his killer, a crime boss played by Sammo Hung.
Along the way, he hopes to bring justice back to his townfolks.
Eddie Peng stars as the hero in this action drama, based on the Chinese folk hero Wong Fei Hung.
Technical aspects: 1080p high definition, 16:9 widescreen picture; Mandarin 5.1 DTS-HD stereo and surround sound and English dubbed; English subtitles.
Don’t miss: A making of featurette is the major extra.
A Married Woman (Blu-ray)
Details: 1964, Cohen Film Collection
Rated: Not rated
The lowdown: Jean-Luc Godard directed this drama about a young married woman who is having an affair with an actor.
But since this is a Goddard movie, nothing is as simple as it appears. The woman discovers she is pregnant, and must decide which man is the father and which man she would rather be with.
The film also is a critique of a consumer culture and the obsession with image, that was fueled by the media.
The film, shot in black and white, has been restored from its original negative.
Technical aspects: 1080p high definition, 1.37:1 full-screen picture; French language track; English subtitles.
Don’t miss: A 2010 interview with French fashion designer and film producer Agnes B., a 2010 interview with Godard scholar Antoine de Baecque and a 2010 interview with the film’s star, Macha Méril.
Major Crimes: The Complete Fourth Season
Details: 2015, Warner Home Video
Rated: Not rated
The lowdown: A five-disc set featuring all 23 episodes of this top-rated TNT police-crime series starring Mary McDonnell as Capt. Sharon Raydor, ably assisted by a cast that includes G.W. Bailey, Tony Denison, Michael Paul Chen, Raymond Cruz, Amy Sykes and Phillip P. Keene.
The fourth season finds this elite team of investigators solves murders, kidnappings and other assorted felonies.
A major subplot running through the season finds Raydor’s adopted son, Rusty Beck (Graham Patrick Martin), leading a one-man crusade to identify a Jane Doe and shine attention on other nameless crime victims.
Technical aspects: Widescreen picture; English 5.1 Dolby surround; English SDH subtitles.
Don’t miss: Deleted scenes and a gag reel comprise the major bonus features.
“Killer Dames — Two Gothic Thrillers by Emilio P. Miraglia”: The Night Evelyn Came Out of the Grave and The Red Queen Kills Seven Times (Blu-ray + DVD)
Details: 1971, Arrow Video
Rated: Not rated
The lowdown: These two thrillers from director Emilio P. Miraglia were made during the height of Italy’s giallo boom, when filmmakers were trying to put their own distinctive mark on their features.
A troubled aristocrat, haunted by the death of Evelyn, his first wife, tries to move on with his life by marrying a seductive woman. Soon after, various relatives begin meeting gruesome deaths, raising the speculation that the first wife has returned in “The Night Evelyn Came Out of the Grave.”
A family curse is at the center of “The Red Queen Kills Seven Times.” Three sisters are told of a legend, which states that every 100 years, the Red Queen returns and claims seven victims.
Fans of these Italian features will not be disappointed. The four-disc set offers both movies in Blu-ray and DVD formats.
Technical aspects: Blu-ray: 1080p high definition, 2.35:1 widescreen picture; English and Italian DTS-HD Master Audio monaural; English SDH and English subtitles: DVD: 2.35:1 widescreen picture; English and Italian Dolby digital monaural; English SDH and English subtitles.
Don’t miss: Bonus offerings include archival featurettes and interviews, an interview with actress Sybil Danning, commentary tracks and a 60-page booklet about the movies.
Mystery Science Theater 3000: Volume Two
Rated: Not rated
The lowdown: Shout! Factory reissues the second volume of the sharp and witty observations by the crew of the Satellite of Love about some rather overripe movies.
This set skewers “Cave Dwellers,” “Pod People,” “Angels Revenge” and the first volume of a program of shorts featuring such titles as “Body Care & Grooming,” “Why Study Industrial Arts?,” “The Home Economics Story” and “A Date With Your Family.”
It’s all fun and silliness that makes watching these films an enjoyable experience.
Technical aspects: Widescreen and full-screen pictures; English Dolby digital track; English closed-captioned subtitles.
Don’t miss: “MST Hour Wraps” for “Cave Dwellers” and “Pod People” are the main extras.
My Friend Flicka: The Complete Series
Details: 1956-57, Shout! Factory
Rated: Not rated
The lowdown: A five-disc set featuring all 39 episodes of this half-hour television series that was inspired by the 1941 novel and 1943 movie.
Johnny Washbrook stars as the young boy who shares adventures with his horse, Flicka, at the turn of the 20th century.
They live on the Goose Bar Ranch with the boy’s parents, where they share many adventures and dangers, but always come out on top.
Technical aspects: 1.33:1 full-screen picture; English Dolby digital monaural.
Other Blu-rays and DVDs being released on Tuesday, unless otherwise indicated:
Accidental Incest (Scorpio Film Release-MVD Visual Entertainment, May 10)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Beyond the Known Universe (Nickelodeon-Paramount Home Entertainment)
The Brothers Grimsby (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment)
Hail, Caesar! (Universal Studios Home Entertainment)
The Other Side of the Door (Fox Home Entertainment)
Touched With Fire (Lionsgate Home Entertainment)
Eddie the Eagle (Fox Home Entertainment, May 27)
Togetherness: The Complete Second Season (HBO Home Entertainment, May 30)
Coming next week: Pride + Prejudice + Zombies
Bob Bloom is a member of the Indiana Film Journalists Association. He reviews movies, Blu-rays and DVDs for ReelBob (ReelBob.com), The Film Yap and other print and online publications. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You also can follow Bloom on Twitter @ReelBobBloom and on Facebook. Movie reviews by Bloom also can be found at Rottentomatoes: www.rottentomatoes.com.