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

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OnVideo's Weekly Guide to Home Video Releases

Tuesday, November 25 -- Monday, December 1

All DVD Releases

  • The Expendables 3

    photo for The Expendables 3 Say what you will about "over-the-hill" action heroes, but these "past-their-prime" stars can still kick some big screen action butt. In this second sequel, the Expendables leader, Barney (Sylvester Stallone), augments his team with new blood for a personal battle: to take down Conrad Stonebanks (Mel Gibson), the Expendables co-founder and notorious arms trader who is hell bent on wiping out Barney and every single one of his associates. When Barney decides its time to keep his old buddies safe from the superior firepower of Stonebanks and his eastern European allies, the fearless leader recruits individuals who are younger, faster and more tech-savvy, making the latest mission a clash of classic old-school style versus high-tech expertise. Until it's time to call in the reserves. Senseless but fun. And loud. Blu-ray extras: "The Expendables 3" documentary, "New Blood: Stacked and Jacked" featurette, "The Total Action Package" featurette, "Christmas Runs the Gauntlet" extended scene, gag reel. Vitals: Director: Patrick Hughes. Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Antonio Banderas, Kelsey Grammer, Wesley Snipes, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, Kellan Lutz , Ronda Rousey, Glen Powell, Victor Ortiz, Robert Davi, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenegger. 2014, CC, MPAA rating: PG-13, 126 min., Action, Box office gross: $38.988 million, Lionsgate. 2 stars


  • Tyler Perry's A Madea Christmas

    photo for Tyler Perry's A Madea Christmas Madea gets coaxed into helping a friend pay her daughter a surprise visit in the country for Christmas, but the biggest surprise is what they'll find when they arrive. As the small, rural town prepares for its annual Christmas Jubilee, new secrets are revealed and old relationships are tested while Madea dishes her own brand of Christmas Spirit to all. Extras: First look at "Tyler Perry's Madea's Tough Love," Tyler Perry's first animated feature; "Jolly Follies" behind-the-scenes featurette. Vitals: Director: Tyler Perry. Stars: Tyler Perry, Chad Michael Murray, Alicia Witt, Eric Lively, Kathy Najimy, Tika Sumpter, Larry the Cable Guy. 2013, CC, MPAA rating: PG-13, 100 min., Comedy, Box office gross: $52.528 million, Lionsgate. 2 stars

  • The November Man

    photo for The November Man Thriller set in the ruthless world of international espionage. Code named The November Man, Peter Devereaux (Pierce Brosnan) is a lethal and highly trained ex-CIA agent, who has been living in Switzerland. When Devereaux is lured out of retirement to safeguard a beautiful witness targeted for assassination (Olga Kurylenko), he's drawn into a deadly game of cat and mouse with his former friend and protege David Mason (Luke Bracey). With no one to trust, Peter must survive Mason's relentless assault, and root out a suspected CIA mole who may pose the greatest threat of all. Vitals: Director: Roger Donaldson. Stars: Pierce Brosnan, Luke Bracey, Olga Kurylenko, Bill Smitrovich, Amila Terzimehic. 2014, CC, MPAA rating: R, 153 min., Thriller, Box office gross: $24.823, million, Fox. 3 stars

    Blu-ray Debuts

  • L'Avventura (1960) (Criterion)
  • Les Blank: Always for Pleasure (1968-1995) (Criterion)
  • Tootsie (1982) (Criterion)

    Read more.

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All DVD Releases

Beyond the Edge (2013) Chad Moffitt, Sonam Sherpa. A dramatization of Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary's monumental and historical ascent of Mt. Everest in 1953 -- an event that stunned the world and defined an era. Formats: DVD. (IFC Films).

The Definitive WWI & WWII Collection (2001-2014) Featuring more than 44 hours of History Channel war programs on 20 discs including "The World Wars," "100 Years of WWI," "75 Years of WWII," "WWII in HD,"" History of WWI: The First Modern War," "Dogfights," "D-Day in HD," "The Color of War," "Ultimate WWII Weapons," and more. Formats: DVD: $99.98. (Lionsgate).

The Expendables 3 (2014) Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Antonio Banderas, Kelsey Grammer, Wesley Snipes, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, Kellan Lutz , Ronda Rousey, Glen Powell, Victor Ortiz, Robert Davi, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenegger. Blu-ray version includes Unrated Extended Edition. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, VOD, Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). Blu-ray extras: Unrated Extended Edition, "The Expendables 3" documentary, "New Blood: Stacked and Jacked" featurette, "The Total Action Package" featurette, "Christmas Runs the Gauntlet" extended scene, gag reel. (Lionsgate).

photo for Extreme Maneater Collection Extreme Maneater Collection (2014) Almost three hours of frightening footage captures the most extreme cases of Animal Planet's "Maneaters." Beginning in South Florida, authorities attempt to control a new invasive species, the African Rock Python, known to attack and kill humans both as pets and in the wild. The search then widens for the Burmese python, another pet whose population is increasing throughout America. As the population spreads, the snake grows larger as does its prey. Then investigators venture to the deep dark of the sea where a kraken-like monster attacks boats, invades beaches, and rips apart victims with bone-chilling efficiency. Formats: DVD, $29.93. (Cinedigm).

Jeeves & Wooster Complete Collection Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry star in P.G. Wodehouse's timeless tales about a boneheaded aristocrat and his brilliant valet. The ITV series earned four BAFTA awards throughout its four series run (1990-1993). In the U.S., it aired on A&E. Eight-disc set with 23 episodes, $59.99. Formats: DVD. (Acorn Media).

L'Avventura (1960) Michelangelo Antonioni invented a new film grammar with this masterwork. An iconic piece of challenging 1960s cinema and a gripping narrative in its own right, "L'Avventura" concerns the enigmatic disappearance of a young woman during a yachting trip off the coast of Sicily, and the search taken up by her disaffected lover (Gabriele Ferzetti) and best friend (Monica Vitti). Antonioni's controversial international sensation is a gorgeously shot tale of modern ennui and spiritual isolation. New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: Audio commentary featuring film historian Gene Youngblood; selected-scene commentary by filmmaker Olivier Assayas; "Antonioni: Documents and Testimonials," a 58-minute 1966 documentary by Gianfranco Mingozzi; writings by Antonioni, read by Jack Nicholson, plus Nicholson's personal recollections of the director; trailer; an essay by critic Geoffrey Nowell-Smith, along with the statement Antonioni made about the film and the letter that circulated in support of it after its 1960 Cannes premiere. (The Criterion Collection).

Les Blank: Always for Pleasure (1968-1995) An uncompromisingly independent filmmaker, Les Blank ("Burden of Dreams") made documentaries for nearly 50 years, elegantly disappearing with his camera into cultural spots rarely seen on-screen -- mostly on the peripheries of the United States, but also occasionally abroad. Seemingly off-the-cuff yet poetically constructed, these films are humane, sometimes wry, always engaging tributes to musicians, food, and all sorts of regionally specific delights. This collector's set provides a diverse survey of Blank's vast output, including the warmly funny "The Blues Accordin' to Lightnin' Hopkins," about the legendary Texas musician; "Always for Pleasure," which captures the vivacious spirit of New Orleans; "Garlic Is as Good as Ten Mothers," a hilarious celebration of the pungent, flavorful "stinking rose" of the title; and 11 other unexpected features, plus eight of Blank's short films. Films Include: "The Blues Accordin' to Lightnin' Hopkins" (1968); "God Respects Us When We Work, but Loves Us When We Dance" (1968); "Spend It All" (1971); "A Well Spent Life" (1971); "Dry Wood" (1973); "Hot Pepper" (1973); "Always for Pleasure" (1978); "Garlic Is as Good as Ten Mothers" (1980); "Sprout Wings and Fly" (1983); "In Heaven There Is No Beer?" (1984); "Gap-Toothed Women" (1987); "Yum, Yum, Yum" (1990); "The Maestro: King of the Cowboy Artists" (1994); "Sworn to the Drum" (1995). New 2K digital restorations of all 14 films, with uncompressed monaural soundtracks on the Blu-rays. Formats: Five DVDs, three Blu-ray Discs. Extras: Excerpt from "Les Blank: A Quiet Revelation," an upcoming documentary by Gina Leibrecht; new interviews with Blank's sons, Harrod and Beau, Blank documentary subject Gerald Gaxiola (a.k.a. the Maestro), filmmakers Skip Gerson, Maureen Gosling, Taylor Hackford, Tom Luddy, and Chris Simon, and chef and author Alice Waters; Blank's short films "Lightnin' Les" (1968), "Mr. Charlie, Your Rollin' Mill Is Burnin' Down" (1968), "The Sun's Gonna Shine (1968)," "More Fess" (1978), "Julie: Old Time Tales of the Blue Ridge" (1991), "My Old Fiddle: A Visit with Tommy Jarrell in the Blue Ridge" (1995) and "The Maestro Rides Again" (2005); an essay by film scholar Andrew Horton. (The Criterion Collection).

Lines of Wellington (2012 -- France/Portugal) Famed director Raul Ruiz's last film, incomplete at his death, but completed by his widow Valeria Sarmiento. Starring John Malkovich, Catherine Deneuve, Isabelle Huppert, Mathieu Amalric, and Jemima West, this lavish epic set during the Napoleonic Wars of 1810 chronicles a multitude of characters -- soldiers and civilians, men, women and children, young and old -- as their everyday lives are torn apart by war. Dragged through hills and valleys, between ruined villages, and across charred forests and devastated crops, none can escape the chaos of the times, no matter their station. The idealistic young lieutenant Pedro de Alencar; Clarissa Warren, the malicious little English girl; the shady dealer Penabranca; the vindictive Sergeant Francisco Xavier; and the lusty prostitute Martirio will all follow different paths to the lines of Torres, where the final battle will decide each of their fates. Formats: Two-disc DVD, Digital. Extras: Making-of featurette, bonus short film "Two Laps." (Film Movement).

A Life in Dirty Movies (2013) A love story about legendary sexploitation director Joe Sarno, "The Ingmar Bergman of 42nd Street," and his loyal wife and collaborator Peggy, this documentary follows the Sarnos for a year as 88-year-old Joe struggles to get a new film project off the ground -- a female-centric softcore film that harkens back to the style of his heyday as a filmmaker in the 1960s. As audiences tag along for the eventful and often hilarious journey between wintery Manhattan and the couple's summer retreat in Sweden, the film's intimate perspective reveals a filmmaker on the verge of being rediscovered in his golden years. Formats: DVD. (Film Movement).

Masterpiece Mystery!: Inspector Lewis 7 (2014) Kevin Whately and Laurence Fox return for a seventh season of the beloved "Inspector Lewis" series. Hathaway has been promoted to Inspector after an extended break from the force, and Lewis is adjusting to retired life until he's asked to team up with his old colleague. With their partnership renewed under altered circumstances, the duo continues to solve crimes in the seemingly perfect academic haven of Oxford, England. Two-disc set with three episodes. Formats: DVD: $29.99, Blu-ray Disc: $34.99, Digital. (PBS Distribution).

Mercy (2014) Chandler Riggs, Dylan McDermott, Frances O'Connor, Mark Duplass. A single mom and her two boys help take care of their grandmother with mystical powers in her remote and lonely house. Formats: DVD. (Universal).

Mockingbird (2014) Spencer List, Audrey Marie Anderson, Alyvia Alyn Lind. Three individuals each receive an anonymous, unmarked video camera and a horrific ultimatum to continue filming ... or die. Formats: DVD. (Universal).

The November Man (2014) Pierce Brosnan, Luke Bracey, Olga Kurylenko, Bill Smitrovich, Amila Terzimehic. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc, VOD, Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). (Fox).

Nymphomaniac: Extended Director's Cut Vol. 1 & 2 photo for Nymphomaniac: Extended Director's Cut Vol. 1 & 2 (2014) Director: Lars von Trier; Charlotte Gainsbourg, Stellan Skarsgard, Shia LaBeouf, Stacy Martin, Willem Dafoe, Mia Goth, Sophie Kennedy Clark, Christian Slater, Jamie Bell, Uma Thurman, Michael Pas, Connie Nielsen, Ananya Berg. Director von Trier's wild and poetic story -- of a woman's journey from birth to the age of 50 as told by the main character, the self-diagnosed nymphomaniac Joe (Charlotte Gainsbourg) -- offers almost and hour and a half of extra footage, making for a five and one-half hour odyssey that leads from innocence to dark complications. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: Featurettes: "The Characters," "The Director," "The Sex," AXS TV: "A Look at Nymphomaniac"; trailers. (Magnolia Home Entertainment).

Phobia (2013) Michael Jefferson, Emma Dubery, Sarah Schoofs, Peter Gregus. An agoraphobic man trapped in his own home is plagued by a violent home-invader as well as visions of his dead wife and a shadowy female figure. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, VOD, Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). (RLJ/Image Entertainment).

A Royal Christmas (2014 -- TV) Stephen Hagan, Jane Seymour, Katherine Flynn, Lacy Chabert. When Prince Leopold, heir to the throne of Cordinia, decides to marry his young love, Emily Taylor, a humble seamstress from Philadelphia, Leopold's mother, Queen Isadora, tries to sabotage his plans. A Hallmark Channel Christmas movie. Formats: DVD. (Cinedigm).

Signed, Sealed, Delivered for Christmas (2014) Eric Mabius, Kristin Booth, Crystal Lowe, Geoff Gustafson, Rob Estes, Marion Ross. The Postables -- a quartet of post office detectives charged with redirecting Santa's mail -- work overtime to help a struggling family find hope on Christmas eve. A Hallmark Channel Christmas movie. Formats: DVD. (Cinedigm).

Stretch (2014) Patrick Wilson, Ed Helms, James Badge Dale, Brooklyn Decker, Jessica Alba, Ray Liotta, David Hasselhoff. A hard-luck limo driver struggling to go straight and pay off a debt to his bookie takes on a job with a crazed passenger whose sought-after ledger implicates some seriously dangerous criminals. Formats: DVD. (Universal).

Tootsie (1982) In "Tootsie," the character Michael Dorsey lands the role of a lifetime -- as does the actor playing him, Dustin Hoffman. This multilayered comedy from director Sydney Pollack follows the increasingly elaborate deception of a down-on-his-luck New York actor who disguises himself as a woman to get a coveted soap opera gig; while his female persona skyrockets to fame, he finds himself learning to be a better man. Hoffman's ball-busting yet disarmingly sweet Dorothy Michaels is a sensational comic creation, given support by a stellar cast including Dabney Coleman, Charles Durning, Teri Garr, George Gaynes, Bill Murray, and, in her first Oscar-winning role, Jessica Lange. Imbued with poignant drama, "Tootsie" is a funny and cutting film from an American moment defined by shifting social and sexual identities. New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: Audio commentary featuring director Sydney Pollack, taken from Criterion's 1991 laserdisc edition of the film; new interview with comedy writer Phill Rosenthal; interview with Dorothy Michaels by film critic Gene Shalit, from the film's production; "Making of Tootsie," a 1982 documentary directed by Rocky Lang; "A Better Man: The Making of Tootsie," a 2007 documentary directed by Charles Kiselyak and featuring interviews with Pollack, actors Dabney Coleman, Teri Garr, Hoffman, and Jessica Lange, and writers Larry Gelbart and Murray Schisgal; screen and wardrobe test footage of Hoffman; deleted scenes; trailers; an essay by critic Michael Sragow. (The Criterion Collection).

photo for Touch of the Light Touch of the Light (2012 -- Taiwan) Huang Yu-siang, Sandrine Pinna. A blind pianist leaves his rural home to attend college in Taipei where he befriends a young dancer and encourages her to follow her dream in the award-winning musical drama that fictionalizes the life of Huang Yu-siang (playing himself). Formats: DVD, VOD, Digital. (Well Go USA).

Tyler Perry's Hell Hath No Fury Like a Woman Scorned - The Play (2014) Cheryl "Pepsii" Riley, Muhammad Ayers, Monica Blaire, Zebulon Ellis, Ray Lavender. A successful, single woman has it all -- a great job, a loving family, and the ability to pay for her baby sister's wedding. According to her best friend, however, there's only one thing missing ... the love of a good man. At her friend's insistence, she meets the seemingly perfect man online and all seems well, until he convinces her to get married in Las Vegas and her life quickly spirals out of control. Taped in front of a live audience. Formats: DVD, VOD, Digital. Extras: Behind-the-scenes interviews. (Lionsgate).

Tyler Perry's A Madea Christmas (2013) Tyler Perry, Chad Michael Murray, Alicia Witt, Eric Lively, Kathy Najimy, Tika Sumpter, Larry the Cable Guy. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc, VOD, Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). Extras: First look at "Tyler Perry's Madea's Tough Love," Tyler Perry's first animated feature; "Jolly Follies" behind-the-scenes featurette. (Lionsgate).

Upstairs, Downstairs: The Ultimate Collection Collectible set includes all five series, more than 25 hours of extras, plus the spinoff series, "Thomas and Sarah." 26-disc set, $199.99. Formats: DVD. (Acorn Media).

War Story (2014) Catherine Keener, Ben Kingsley, Hafsia Herzi. A war photographer (Keener) who recently endured a brutal detainment in Libya holes up in Sicily to come to terms with her ordeal, not far from the home of her former lover and mentor (Kingsley). Soon she crosses paths with a Tunisian migrant in need of an abortion and safe passage to France, who bears a striking resemblance to a Libyan girl she photographed just before her capture. Formats: DVD. (IFC Films).

What If (2013) Daniel Radcliffe, Zoe Kazan, Adam Driver, Mackenzie Davis, Rafe Spall. A medical school drop-out, burned out from a string of failed relationships, forms an instant bond with Chantry, who lives with her longtime boyfriend. Together, they puzzle out what it means if your best friend is also the love of your life. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc, VOD, Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). Extras: Two vignettes: "Blurred Lines," in which the actors and filmmakers explore the movie's themes and talk about their experience shooting a modern love story; "Opposites Attract" cast and crew interviews. Blu-ray adds three deleted scenes and two additional vignettes: "Behind the Scenes of What If" and "A Modern Love Story." (Sony).

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November 23, 2014
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Last Week's Releases: Tuesday, November 18 -- Monday, November 24