This Week's DVD, Blu-ray Releases -- OnVideo

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OnVideo's Weekly Guide to Home Video Releases

Tuesday, February 23 -- Monday, February 29

All DVD Releases

  • Spotlight

    photo for Spotlight Upholding the grand cinema tradition of films about hard-working journalists who expose corruption and malfeasance ("All the President's Men" comes to mind immediately) is director Tom McCarthy's "Spotlight," a superbly directed and acted dramatization of the Boston Globe's Pulitzer Prize-winning "Spotlight" team investigation into allegations of child sex abuse within the local Catholic Archdiocese -- child abuse that had been going on for decades and that had been covered up by the Church as well as Boston's legal and government establishment. Like McCarthy's previous outings, "The Station Agent," "The Visitor" and "Win Win," "Spotlight" eschews splash and hyperbole to concentrate on the minute details of the story -- here following the investigative reporters as they go after the facts, digging into archives and conducting interview after interview -- and slowly building up layer after layer of nuance and mis en scene. The film -- which stars Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, Billy Crudup, Stanley Tucci, John Slattery, Lana Antonova, Jamey Sheridan and Brian d'Arcy James -- has been nominated for six Oscars, including Best Motion Picture of the Year, Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role for Mark Ruffalo, Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role for Rachel McAdams, Best Achievement in Directing for Tom McCarthy, Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen and Best Achievement in Editing. It already has nabbed Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture from SAG, Best Picture at the Broadcast Film Critics Association Awards, won Best Picture and Best Screenplay at both the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards and the National Society of Film Critics Awards, and Best Original Screenplay from the Writers Guild. Given that Alejandro González Iñárritu and his "Birdman" won for best director and best film last year, effectively knocking out his "The Revenant," which is clearly the best film this year, and given that "Carol," our second pick for Best Motion Picture of the Year, wasn't nominated by the Academy, we figure that McCarthy and "Spotlight" will be the winners this year. Vitals: Director: Tom McCarthy. Stars: Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, Billy Crudup, Stanley Tucci, John Slattery, Lana Antonova, Jamey Sheridan, Brian d'Arcy James. 2015, CC, MPAA rating: R, 128 min., Drama, Box office gross: $31.045 million, Universal. Extras: "Uncovering the Truth: A Spotlight Team Roundtable," "Spotlight: A Look Inside," "The State of Journalism." 3 stars


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  • Secret in Their Eyes

    photo for Secret in Their Eyes Thriller that explores the murky boundaries between justice and revenge. A tight-knit team of investigators -- Ray (Chiwetel Ejiofor), Jess (Julia Roberts) and their supervisor Claire (Nicole Kidman) -- is torn apart when Jess’s teenage daughter is brutally and inexplicably murdered. After obsessively searching for the elusive killer every day for 13 years, Ray finally uncovers a new lead that he’s certain will resolve the case. No one is prepared, however, for the shocking secret that will reveal the enduring, destructive effects of personal vengeance on the human soul. A reimaging of the 2009 Academy Award-winning Argentinian film "The Secret in Their Eyes." Vitals: Director: Billy Ray. Stars: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Nicole Kidman, Julia Roberts, Dean Norris, Michael Kelly, Joe Cole, Alfred Molina. 2015, CC, MPAA rating: PG-13, 111 min., Mystery Thriller, Box office gross: $20.167 million, Universal. Extras: "Adapting the Story for Today’s World," "Julia Roberts Discusses Her Most Challenging Role," commentary with director-screenwriter Billy Ray and producer Mark Johnson. 2 stars

  • The Good Dinosaur

    photo for The Good Dinosaur This animated family adventure asks the question: What if the asteroid that forever changed life on Earth missed the planet completely and giant dinosaurs never became extinct? Pixar Animation Studios creates a world of dinosaurs where an Apatosaurus named Arlo makes an unlikely human friend. While traveling through a harsh and mysterious landscape, Arlo learns the power of confronting his fears and discovers what he is truly capable of. Vitals: Director: Pete Sohn. Stars: Voices of Jeffrey Wright, John Lithgow, Frances McDormand, Neil Patrick Harris, Judy Greer, Bill Hader. 2015, CC, MPAA rating: PG, 93 min., Animated, Box office gross: $120.421 million, Disney. Extras: "Sanjay's Super Team" theatrical short; "True Lies About Dinosaurs" featurette; "The Filmmakers' Journey," in which director Peter Sohn and his fellow filmmakers talk about the challenging, inspiring, and unexpectedly emotional experience of making "The Good Dinosaur"; "Every Part of the Dinosaur" animation featurette; "Following the T-Rex Trail"; commentary by director Peter Sohn, story supervisor Kelsey Mann, supervising animator Mike Venturini, director of photography/lighting Sharon Calahan, and supervising technical director Sanjay Bakshi; "Dino Bites" montage of original animated pieces produced to promote "The Good Dinosaur"; "Hide and Seek" short animated clip produced to promote "The Good Dinosaur"; deleted scenes. 2 stars




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    All DVD Releases

    photo for American Horror Project: Vol. 1 American Horror Project: Vol. 1 Anthology series of the unsung heroes of American terror ... Whether it's a film that has languished in obscurity, or a movie that's at risk of being lost due to lack of source materials, the American Horror Project ensures that these unique slices of the American Nightmare are brought back into the public consciousness and preserved for all to enjoy. Volume I of the series presents three tales of violence and madness from the 1970s. "Malatesta's Carnival of Blood" (Christopher Speeth, 1973) sees a family arrive at a creepy, dilapidated fairground in search of their missing daughter, only to find themselves at the mercy of cannibalistic ghouls lurking beneath the park. "The Witch Who Came from the Sea" (Matt Cimber, 1976), stars Mollie Perkins as a young woman whose bizarre and violent fantasies start to bleed into reality -- literally. Every parent's worst nightmare comes true in "The Premonition" (Robert Allen Schnitzer, 1976), a tale of psychic terror in which five-year-old Janie is snatched away by a strange woman claiming to be her long-lost mother. All three are newly remastered from the best surviving elements and contextualised with brand new supplementary material. Formats: Blu-ray/DVD Combo. (Arrow Video/MVD Entertainment).

    photo for Burt Bacharach: A Life in Song Burt Bacharach: A Life in Song (2015) "Walk on By," "What the World Needs Now," "Do You Know the Way to San Jose?" "The Look of Love," "I Say a Little Prayer." What would the world be without these songs? Composer-producer-pianist-singer Burt Bacharach defined the art of songwriting, crafting timeless music that captivated, inspired, and cemented his legacy into history's songbook. This concert film celebrates the life and career of Bacharach, and features performances by Joss Stone, Justin Hayward, Alfie Boe, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, Shaun Escoffery, Rebecca Ferguson, Michael Kiwanuka, and Laura Mvula. Filmed at London's Royal Festival Hall in 2015, "A Life in Song" presents on-stage conversations between Bacharach and Michael Grade traversing different aspects of his years in music, interspersed with performances of many of his best loved songs by a diverse cast of artists. The evening culminates in a medley of some of Bacharach's most famous film songs performed by the man himself and his band, and a performance of "That's What Friends Are For" featuring the entire evening's cast. Originally broadcast on BBC4 in November 2015. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc, Digital. Extras: Three additional songs not seen in the original program:. (Eagle Rock Entertainment). Due February 26.

    photo for Chuggington: Delivery Dash at the Docks Chuggington: Delivery Dash at the Docks (2016) In this collection of six new Chuggington adventures, Koko is thrilled to be spending the day training with Daley, Chuggington's new express delivery engine. Together they pick up and deliver important packages all around Chuggington, frequenting the bustling docks where Skipper Stu, Chuggington's new Dock Master, is unloading and loading the ship. Through their adventures, Koko and Skipper Stu learn the importance of patience, paying careful attention to detail and, of course, teamwork as they commence with the Delivery Dash at the Docks. Formats: DVD. Extras: Character montages: Olwin, coloring pages, collectible Daley toy train from TOMY (while supplies last). (Anchor Bay).

    Be Cool, Scooby-Doo! Season 1 Part 1 (2016) Two-disc set with thirteen 22-minute episodes. Newest adaptation of the classic, animated kids mystery series. Formats: DVD, $19.97. (Warner).

    photo for Entertainment Entertainment (2015) Gregg Turkington, Tye Sheridan, John C. Reilly, Michael Cera, Amy Seimetz. A broken, aging comedian tours the California desert, lost in a cycle of third-rate venues, novelty tourist attractions, and vain attempts to reach his estranged daughter. By day, he slogs through the barren landscape, inadvertently alienating every acquaintance. At night, he seeks solace in the animation of his onstage persona. Fueled by the promise of a lucrative Hollywood engagement, he trudges through a series of increasingly surreal and volatile encounters. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: Deleted and extended scenes. (Magnolia Home Entertainment).

    Extraction (2015) Bruce Willis, Kellan Lutz, Gina Carano, D.B. Sweeney, Dan Bilzerian, Olga Valentin, Lydia Hull, Tyler J. Olson. When a terrorist group kidnaps retired CIA field operative Leonard Turner (Bruce Willis), his son Harry Turner (Kellan Lutz), a government analyst who has been repeatedly turned down for field service, launches his own unsanctioned rescue operation. While evading highly skilled operatives, deadly assassins, and international terrorists, Harry finally puts his combat training to the test in a high-stakes mission to find his father and to stop a terrorist plot. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc, VOD, photo for Extraction Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). Extras: Commentary with director Steven C. Miller and actor Kellan Lutz, "The Making of Extraction" featurette, extended interviews with the cast and crew, deleted and extended scenes. (Lionsgate).

    Fargo (Year Two) (2015) Four-disc set with 10 episodes. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: "Lou on Lou: A Conversation with Patrick Wilson, Keith Carradine and Noah Hawley"; "Waffles and Bullet Holes: A Return to Sioux Falls"; "The Films of Ronald Reagan" extended Fargo cut; "The True History of Crime in the Midwest," "Skip Sprang" TV commercial. (Fox).



    photo for The Girl in the Book The Girl in the Book (2015) Emily VanCamp, Michael Nyqvist. Set in the cutthroat world of New York publishing, this melodrama follows Alice Harvey, the daughter of a powerful book agent, who finds herself trapped in a job as a junior book editor while trying to overcome her own writer's block. When Alice is unexpectedly asked to manage the re-release of a bestselling novel based on incidents in her own life, the book's author reenters her life and opens a door to painful memories from her past. Formats: DVD. (Monarch Home Entertainment).

    The Good Dinosaur (2015) Voices of Jeffrey Wright, John Lithgow, Frances McDormand, Neil Patrick Harris, Judy Greer, Bill Hader. Formats: 3D/Blu-ray/DVD Combo, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, DVD, VOD, Digital, Disney Movies Anywhere (cloud). Extras: "Sanjay's Super Team" theatrical short; "True Lies About Dinosaurs" featurette; "The Filmmakers' Journey," in which director Peter Sohn and his fellow filmmakers talk about the challenging, inspiring, and unexpectedly emotional experience of making "The Good Dinosaur"; "Every Part of the Dinosaur" animation featurette; "Following the T-Rex Trail"; commentary by director Peter Sohn, story supervisor Kelsey Mann, supervising animator Mike Venturini, director of photography/lighting Sharon Calahan, and supervising technical director Sanjay Bakshi; "Dino Bites" montage of original animated pieces produced to promote "The Good Dinosaur"; "Hide and Seek" short animated clip produced to promote "The Good Dinosaur"; deleted scenes. (Disney).

    The Graduate (1967) One of the most beloved American films of all time, "The Graduate" earned Mike Nichols a best director Oscar, brought the music of Simon & Garfunkel to a wider audience, and introduced the world to a young actor named Dustin Hoffman. Benjamin Braddock (Hoffman) has just finished college and is already lost in a sea of confusion and barely contained angst when he becomes sexually involved with the middle-aged mother (Anne Bancroft) of the young woman he's dating (Katharine Ross). Visually imaginative and impeccably acted, with a clever, endlessly quotable script by Buck Henry (based on the novel by Charles Webb), "The Graduate" had the kind of cultural impact that comes along only once in a generation. New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: Optional 5.1 surround remix, approved by director Mike Nichols, presented in DTS-HD Master Audio on the Blu-ray; commentary from 2007 featuring Nichols in conversation with filmmaker Steven Soderbergh; audio commentary from 1987 featuring film scholar Howard Suber; new interview with actor Dustin Hoffman; new conversation between producer Lawrence Turman and actor-screenwriter Buck Henry; new interview with film writer and historian Bobbie O'Steen about editor Sam O'Steen's work on "The Graduate"; "Students of The Graduate," a short documentary from 2007 on the film's influence; "The Graduate at 25," a 1992 featurette on the making of the film; interview with Nichols by Barbara Walters, from a 1966 episode of NBC's "Today" show: excerpt from a 1970 appearance by singer-songwriter Paul Simon on "The Dick Cavett Show"; screen tests; trailer; booklet with an essay by journalist and critic Frank Rich. (The Criterion Collection).

    I Knew Her Well (1965) This prismatic portrait of the days and nights of a party girl in the sitxies Rome is a revelation. On the surface, "I Knew Her Well," directed by Antonio Pietrangeli, plays like an inversion of "La dolce vita" with a woman at its center, following the gorgeous, seemingly liberated Adriana (Stefania Sandrelli) as she dallies with a wide variety of men, attends parties, goes to modeling gigs, and circulates among the rich and famous. Despite its often light tone, though, the film is a stealth portrait of a suffocating culture that regularly dehumanizes people, especially women. A seriocomic character study that never strays from its complicated central figure while keeping us at an emotional remove, "I Knew Her Well" is one of the most overlooked films of the sixties, by turns hilarious, tragic, and altogether jaw-dropping. New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: New interview with actor Stefania Sandrelli, new interview with film scholar Luca Barattoni about the career of director Antonio Pietrangeli, trailer, booklet with an essay by journalist and author Alexander Stille. (The Criterion Collection).

    Kung Fu Trailers of Fury (2016) A hard-kicking, face-smashing, snake-fisting trailer collection with over two hours of the wildest martial arts mayhem in motion picture history featuring brutal boxers, shaolin poles, fat dragons, iron claws and one-armed masters. From the golden age of kung fu cinema comes this insane tsunami of masters, mobsters, furious vengeance and incredible fighting styles, starring Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Lo Lieh, Sammo Hung, Angela Mao, Chuck Norris, Jimmy Wang Yu and Wu Tang, too. These are the most over-the-top and rarely-seen original trailers for Hong Kong classics that include "The Way of the Dragon," "Death Blow," "Two Champions of Shaolin," "Daggers 8," "Snake in the Eagle's Shadow," "Shaolin Wooden Men," "The Story of Drunken Master," "Enter the Fat Dragon," "Brutal Boxer" and many more. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: Audio commentary with experts Ric Meyers ("Films of Fury"), Michael Worth ("The Bruceploitation Bible"), martial arts instructor Greg Schiller and Rick Stelow of Drunken Master Video; "The Way of the Cube" featurette on the discovery of the original 35mm trailers underneath the stage of a maverick UK cinema. (Severin Films).

    The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar (2016) Voices of James Earl Jones, Ernie Sabella, Rob Lowe, Gabrielle Union, Max Charles, Joshua Rush, Atticus Shaffer, Diamond White, Dusan Brown. Kion, second-born cub of Simba and Nala, assumes the role of leader of "The Lion Guard," an elite team of animals tasked with preserving the Pride Lands, and assembles a group of unlikely heroes: Bunga the honey badger, Fuli the cheetah, Beshte the hippo and Ono the egret. Together they embark on a thrilling adventure as they use their unique abilities to defend the Pride Lands from predators and maintain balance within the Circle of Life. Formats: DVD, Digital. Extras: Free talking backpack clip, "Here Comes the Lion Guard" music video performed by Beau Black. (Disney).

    photo for Millennium/R.O.T.O.R. Millennium & R.O.T.O.R. BLU-RAY DEBUT "Millennium" (1989) is a time travel yarn in which an NTSB investigator seeking the cause of an airline disaster meets a warrior woman from 1000 years in the future, starring Kris Kristofferson, Cheryl Ladd and Daniel J. Travanti. "R.O.T.O.R." (1987) revolves around a Robotic Officer Tactical Operation Research prototype robot intended for crime combat that escapes from the development lab and goes on a killing rampage. Stars Michael Hunter, Richard Gesswein. Extras: An alternate ending for "Millennium" and theatrical trailers. (Scream Factory).

    My All American (2015) Aaron Eckhart, Finn Wittrock, Robin Tunney, Sarah Bolger. The true story of Freddie Steinmark. Although deemed too small as an athlete, Steinmark dreams of playing football and brings a fight to the game that is noticed by legendary coach Darrell Royal, leading to a scholarship to play college football. With dedication and grueling practices, a victorious season is within reach, but Freddie receives a shocking diagnosis and discovers what it truly means to have the heart of a champion. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, Digital Extras: "Spirit of Freddie Steinmark" featurette, "A Look Inside" behind-the-scenes featurette. (Universal).


    photo for Racing Extinction Racing Extinction (2015) Academy Award-winning director Louie Psihoyos (Best Documentary, "The Cove," 2009), producer Fisher Stevens (TV's "The Blacklist"), and the Oceanic Preservation Society go undercover once again to offer an inside look at the hidden world of endangered species and a detailed analysis of the astronomical industrial growth that is changing the chemistry of the entire planet. Using hidden cameras and numerous high-tech tactics to infiltrate the world's most dangerous black markets to document the link between carbon emissions and species extinction, the documentary reveals stunning, never-before-seen images that truly change the way we see the world. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc, Digital. (Lionsgate).

    Secret in Their Eyes (2015) Chiwetel Ejiofor, Nicole Kidman, Julia Roberts, Dean Norris, Michael Kelly, Joe Cole, Alfred Molina. Thriller that explores the murky boundaries between justice and revenge. A tight-knit team of investigators is torn apart when one of the team's teenage daughter is brutally and inexplicably murdered. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, VOD, Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). Extras: "Adapting the Story for Today’s World," "Julia Roberts Discusses Her Most Challenging Role," commentary with director-screenwriter Billy Ray and producer Mark Johnson. (Universal).

    The Serpent and the Rainbow Collector’s Edition Blu-ray (1988) Bill Pullman, Cathy Tyson, Zakes Mokae, Paul Winfield. A Harvard anthropologist (Bill Pullman) is sent to Haiti to retrieve a strange powder that is said to have the power to bring human beings back from the dead. In his quest to find the miracle drug, the cynical scientist enters the rarely seen netherworld of walking zombies, blood rites and ancient curses. Based on the true life experiences of Wade Davis and filmed on location in Haiti, it's a frightening excursion into black magic and the supernatural. New 2015 HD transfer from the inter-positive film element. Extras: New audio commentary with actor Bill Pullman; new "The Making of The Serpent and the Rainbow" featuring new interviews with Pullman, author Wade Davis, director of photography John Lindley and special makeup effects artists Lance Anderson and David Anderson; theatrical trailer; TV spot; still gallery. (Scream Factory).

    photo for Shaun the Sheep: Season 2 Shaun the Sheep: Season 2 (2011) Two-disc set with 40 episodes, $14.98. Formats: DVD, Digital. Extras: "Whack-a-Pig" game, "Sheep Shearing" game, "Meet the Animals" video, "Sing-Along with Shaun" video, "Building a Pig" video, "The Mini Making of Shaun" featurette, "Timmy Time" and "Timmy's Tune" sneak peak, behind the scenes gallery. (Lionsgate).

    Shaun the Sheep: Sheep on the Loose (2009) Six episodes from Season One, $9.98. When the gang sneaks out to the nearest amusement park for a day of fun, Shaun and Bitzer must help cover their tracks before the Farmer finds out. Formats: DVD, VOD, Digital. Extras: (Studio).

    Spotlight (2015) Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, Billy Crudup, Stanley Tucci, John Slattery, Lana Antonova, Jamey Sheridan, Brian d'Arcy James. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, VOD, Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). Extras: "Uncovering the Truth: A Spotlight Team Roundtable," "Spotlight: A Look Inside," "The State of Journalism." (Universal).

    The Summer of Sangaile (2015 -- Lithuania) Seventeen-year-old Sangaile is fascinated by stunt planes. Afraid of heights, she has never dared to even enter in one of the cockpits. At a summer aeronautical show, nearby her parents' lakeside villa, she meets Auste, a local girl of her age, who unlike Sangaile, lives her life to the full with creativity and dare. As the two girls become lovers, Sangaile allows Auste to discover her most intimate secret, and finds in her teenage love the only person to truly encourage her in flying. Official Lithuanian entry for Best Foreign-language Film at the 88th Academy Awards. Formats: DVD. Extras: Interview with director Alante Kavaïte, "5 Years Later" featurette, photo gallery, original theatrical trailer. (Strand Releasing).

    Transformers Rescue Bots: Adventures in Time and Space (2016) The Rescue Bots take their adventures through time and space with five episodes. Griffin Rock's Autobot first responders -- Chase, Heatwave, Blades and Boulder -- will stop at nothing to protect their Earth friends, even if it means traveling through all of time and space. Formats: DVD. (Shout! Factory).


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