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OnVideo's Weekly Guide to Home Video Releases

Tuesday, February 21 -- Monday, February 27

All DVD Releases

  • Manchester by the Sea

    photo for Manchester by the Sea Grief -- and how it affects us -- comes to the fore in "Manchester by the Sea," a literate outing by Kenneth Lonergan, whose career has bounced from the sublime (screenplay for "The Gangs of New York," screenplay and direction for "You Can Count on Me") to the ridiculous (screenplay for "Analyze This" and writer of "The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle"). Casey Affleck -- in a tour-de-force performance --plays Lee Chandler, a very low-key, solitary Boston janitor who is called back to his home town (Manchester by the Sea) when his older brother dies, whereupon he discovers that he has been made guardian of his high-school-age nephew. Back in the town in which he was born and raised, he reluctantly takes care of the spirited 15-year-old and is forced to deal with a horrific past that separated him from his wife Randi (Michelle Williams, in a heartbreaking performance), his family and his community. It's a gut-wrenching -- but ultimately uplifting -- film ... and it's been nominated for four Oscars. Highly recommended.Vitals: Director: Kenneth Lonergan. Stars: Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams, Kyle Chandler, Gretchen Mol, Kara Hayward, Tate Donovan, Heather Burns, Erica McDermott, Lucas Hedges, Susan Pourfar. 2016, CC, MPAA rating: R, 135 min., Drama, Box office gross: $34.158 million, Lionsgate. Extras: “Emotional Lives: Making Manchester by the Sea,” conversation with director/writer Kenneth Lonergan, deleted scenes. 4 stars


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  • Nocturnal Animals"

    photo for
Nocturnal Animals Fashion designer Tom Ford made his first foray as a film director with 2009's "A Single Man," a powerful if depressing work of art about an English professor in Los Angeles coping with the death of his male lover, starring Colin Firth and Julianne Moore. Now, seven years later, Ford has given us an even more depressing (sadistically depressing) film with "Nocturnal Animals." The film, a story within a story that bounces between the past and present, stars Amy Adams as an art gallery owner who receives a book manuscript from her ex-husband, who she abandoned some 20 years earlier when she realized he was never going to give her the wealthy lifestyle she wanted. The manuscript, dedicated to her and titled "Nocturnal Animals," follows a family trip through the Southwest desert that goes awry when the protagonist's (Jake Gyllenhaal, who also plays the ex-husband) wife and daughter are kidnapped by a trio of criminals. As she reads the harrowing story, the film flashes back and forth between the past and the present, confronting dark truths about herself as her own now-unhappy life unfolds before her. Grueling -- but fascinating. Vitals: Director:Tom Ford. Stars: Amy Adams, Isla Fisher, Jake Gyllenhaal, Armie Hammer, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Michael Shannon, Laura Linney, Karl Glusman. 2016, CC, MPAA rating: R, 115 min., Drama Suspense, Box office gross: $10.587 million, Universal. Extras: Three part featurette, "The Making of Nocturnal Animals": "Building the Story," "The Look of Nocturnal Animals" and "The Filmmaker’s Eye: Tom Ford." 3 stars

  • Hacksaw Ridge

    photo for Hacksaw Ridge The extraordinary true story of Desmond Doss (Andrew Garfield) who, in Okinawa during the bloodiest battle of WWII, saved 75 men without firing or carrying a gun. He was the only American soldier in WWII to fight on the front lines without a weapon, as he believed that while the war was justified, killing was nevertheless wrong. As an army medic, he single-handedly evacuated the wounded from behind enemy lines, braved fire while tending to soldiers, was wounded by a grenade, and hit by snipers. Doss was the first conscientious objector to ever earn the Congressional Medal of Honor. Vitals: Director: Mel Gibson. Stars: Andrew Garfield, Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey, Teresa Palmer, Hugo Weaving, Rachel Griffiths, Vince Vaughn. 2016, CC, MPAA rating: R, 139 min., Drama, Box office gross: $65.362 million, Lionsgate. Extras: Deleted scenes, Veterans Day greeting with Mel Gibson. Blu-ray adds “The Soul of War: Making Hacksaw Ridge” documentary. 2 stars

  • Bad Santa 2

    photo for Bad Santa 2 Sequel to 2003's cult hit. Fueled by cheap whiskey, greed and hatred, Willie (Billy Bob Thornton) teams up once again with his angry little sidekick, Marcus (Tony Cox), to knock off a Chicago charity on Christmas Eve. Along for the ride is "the kid" -- chubby and cheery Thurman Merman (Brett Kelly), a 250-pound ray of sunshine who brings out Willie's sliver of humanity. Mommy issues arise when the pair are joined by Willie's horror story of a mother, Sunny Soke (Kathy Bates). A super butch super bitch, Sunny raises the bar for the gang's ambitions, while somehow lowering the standards of criminal behavior. Willie is further burdened by lusting after the curvaceous and prim Diane(Christina Hendricks), the charity director with a heart of gold and libido of steel. Vitals: Director: Mark Waters. Stars: Billy Bob Thornton, Kathy Bates, Tony Cox, Christina Hendricks, Brett Kelly, Ryan Hansen. 2016, CC, MPAA rating: R, 92 min., Comedy, Box office gross: $17.544 million, Broad Green Pictures/Miramax. Extras: "Thurman Then & Now" featurette; “Just Your Average Red Band" featurette”; “Jingle Balls,” an adult version of the classic holiday song; gag reel; alternate opening and ending; deleted scenes. Blu-ray adds “That’s My Willie” original animated series. 2 stars


    This Week's Digital Releases

    February 21:
    Bad Santa 2: Sequel to 2003's cult hit. Fueled by cheap whiskey, greed and hatred, Willie (Billy Bob Thornton) teams up once again with his angry little sidekick, Marcus (Tony Cox), to knock off a Chicago charity on Christmas Eve.
    Fences: Adapted by legendary writer August Wilson from his own renowned play, "Fences" follows former Negro-league baseball player Troy Maxson (Denzel Washington) in 1950s Pittsburgh as he fights to provide for those he loves in a world that threatens to push him down. (DVD, Blu-ray release: March 14)
    Jackie: First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy (Natalie Porter) grapples with unimaginable grief and trauma following President John F. Kennedy’s assassination. (DVD, Blu-ray release: March 7)
    Man Down: A former U.S. Marine returns home and searches desperately for the whereabouts of his wife and son. (DVD, Blu-ray release: March 7)
    We Are X: Documentary on Japanese rock group We Are X. (DVD, Blu-ray, VOD release: March 7)

    Read more.


    Blu-ray Debuts

  • Mildred Pierce (1945) (Criterion)
  • 3 Classic Films by Claude Chabrol: "Betty" (1992), Torment (L'enfer) (1994), The Swindle (1997)
  • Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (1988) (Criterion)

    Read more.




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All DVD Releases

Air Bound (2016) Voices of Ray Chase, Doug Erholtz, Justine Ezarik, Crispin Freeman, Nash Grier, Jon Lovitz. Dreaming of adventure, city mouse Gavin and his buddy Matthew join a crew of Ship Mice ready to set sail -- just as young Chester bursts in, pleading for help. Stowing away on a boat, the gang heads for Dream Island to defend Chester’s family of mice against Winston the White Weasel (Lovitz) and his wicked weasel clan. Awarded the Dove Foundation’s seal of approval. Formats: DVD, VOD, Digital. Extras: “Bringing the Characters to Life: At the Recording Studio with John Lovitz, Justine Ezarik, Nash Grier and Jimmy Tatro” featurette, four TV’s “Minuscule” bonus episodes. (Lionsgate).

Bad Santa 2 (2016) Billy Bob Thornton, Kathy Bates, Tony Cox, Christina Hendricks, Brett Kelly, Ryan Hansen. Sequel to 2003's cult hit. Fueled by cheap whiskey, greed and hatred, Willie (Billy Bob Thornton) teams up once again with his angry little sidekick, Marcus (Tony Cox), to knock off a Chicago charity on Christmas Eve. Formats: DVD, Unrated Blu-ray Disc, Unrated 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray Combo, VOD, Digital. Extras: "Thurman Then & Now" featurette; “Just Your Average Red Band" featurette”; “Jingle Balls,” an adult version of the classic holiday song; gag reel; alternate opening and ending; deleted scenes. Blu-ray adds “That’s My Willie” original animated series. (Broad Green Pictures/Miramax).

Blood on the Mountain (2016) The shocking in-depth investigation of the coal mining industry that showcases the haunting and long term devastating impacts of coal mining on people and the planet. Shedding light on the economic and environmental injustices that have resulted from industrial control in West Virginia, the documentary examines the harsh conditions of the coal industry and the haunting effects on the American workers. Over the course of many years, the coal industry has transformed and impacted the development of coal. The need and appetite for coal and labor has placed a massive burden on many people including the workers and the land of Appalachia. The film delivers a striking portrait of a fractured population, exploited and besieged by corporate interests, and abandoned by the powers elected to represent them. This documentary details the struggles of a hard-working, misunderstood people, who have historically faced limited choices and have never benefited fairly from the rich, natural resources of their land. Formats: DVD, Digital. (Virgil Films).

Fare (2017) A ride-share driver finds himself transporting the man who is secretly sleeping with his wife. The movie was shot entirely inside a moving car, in just three days. Written by, directed and starring Thomas Torrey. Formats: DVD, VOD, Digital. (Random Media).

Fatal Instinct (2014) Ivan Sergei, Masiela Lusha, Dominique Swain. A police detective follows a trail of evidence in search of a serial killer in Los Angeles that eventually seems to lead to his trusted partner's ex-con brother -- who he helped put in prison years ago. Formats: DVD. (Monarch).

photo for Grace and Frankie: Season 2 Grace and Frankie: Season 2 (2016) Three-disc set with 13 episodes. After learning their ex-husbands plan to marry one another, lifelong rivals Grace and Frankie have bonded in an uneasy friendship. The second season of this acclaimed comedy series has Grace and Frankie tackling the challenges of family and relationships -- while driving each other crazy on a regular basis. Stars Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Sam Waterston and Martin Sheen. Formats: DVD, Digital. Extras: Gag reel. (Lionsgate).



The Great & the Small (2016) Nick Fink, Ritchie Coster, Melanie Lynskey, Louisa Krause, Ann Dowd. Twenty-six year old Scott is living on the streets and trying to find his way back into society while on probation for petty crimes. He attempts to navigate his relationship with his two bit criminal of a boss and an enigmatic detective, while at the same time winning back the heart of his ex-girlfriend, a working single mom. Formats: DVD, VOD. Extras: (Breaking Glass Pictures).

Hacksaw Ridge (2016) Director: Mel Gibson. Stars: Andrew Garfield, Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey, Teresa Palmer, Hugo Weaving, Rachel Griffiths, Vince Vaughn. The extraordinary true story of conscientious objector medic Desmond Doss (Andrew Garfield) who, in Okinawa during the bloodiest battle of WWII, saved 75 men without firing or carrying a gun. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray Combo, VOD, Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). Extras: Deleted scenes, Veterans Day greeting with Mel Gibson. Blu-ray adds “The Soul of War: Making Hacksaw Ridge” documentary. (Lionsgate).

Heaven Sent (2016) Christian Kane, Marley Shelton, Mallory James Mahoney, Ernie Hudson. A young couple, on the eve of their painful divorce, receives a surprising houseguest -- an 8-year-old runaway from Heaven. Cleverly guided by Divine intervention, she helps them rediscover their hope and faith in the power of love. Lifetime network faith-based family film. Formats: DVD. (Lionsgate).

Joe Bullet (1973 - South Africa) All-African cast “Blaxploitation” film originally banned by the apartheid government. A local soccer team, the Eagles, is just a week from the championship final when it falls prey to the deadly demands of a mysterious gangster. Desperate, the team implores the one man who can help them fight this underworld corruption, the James Bond-esque Joe Bullet (Ken Gampu). To help the Eagles, Bullet goes up against everything from hired assassins to exploding booby traps. Fully restored from the original 35mm assets. Formats: DVD. Extras: Commentary, trailer, before-and-after restoration demo. (The Film Detective).

The King of New Orleans (2017) David Jensen, Richard Brien. Poignant slice-of-life drama following one genial cabbie's experiences in one of the world's most colorful cities. Larry Shirt (Jensen) is a United Cab driver whose passengers are the city's hustlers, tourists, socialites, musicians, housekeepers, weirdoes and reporters. Bobby Cohn (Brien), a Harvard student home from school and in the middle of a personal crisis, is one of those passengers. The circumstances that bring them together lead to a bond that is ultimately turned upside down by Hurricane Katrina, but instilled by the love of the city that they both call home. Formats: DVD, VOD, Digital. Extras: (Candy Factory Films).

The Level (2016) Two-disc set with all six episodes of the Acorn TV Original detective thriller series. Detective Sergeant Nancy Devlin is a good cop with a dark secret: she’s loyal to drug trafficker Frank Le Saux, who is like a father to her. But when their clandestine meeting turns violent, leaving Frank dead and Nancy with a bullet wound, Nancy fears her double life may soon be exposed. Assigned to Brighton to investigate the crime, Nancy must track down Frank’s killer while concealing her role -- and her injury -- from her enigmatic new partner, DS Gunner Martin, and her old friend, DS Kevin O’Dowd. Can Nancy stay one step ahead of her colleagues -- and the real killer? Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: Behind-the-scenes featurettes. (Acorn Media).

Manchester by the Sea (2016) Dir.: Kenneth Lonergan. Stars: Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams, Kyle Chandler, Gretchen Mol, Kara Hayward, Tate Donovan, Heather Burns, Erica McDermott, Lucas Hedges, Susan Pourfar. After a solitary Boston janitor (Affleck) unexpectedly becomes the sole guardian of his 16-year-old nephew, he must come to terms with a past that separated him from his wife (Williams) and his hometown, as uncle and nephew unite for an unforgettable journey of love, community, sacrifice, and hope. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, VOD, Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). Extras: “Emotional Lives: Making Manchester by the Sea,” conversation with director/writer Kenneth Lonergan, deleted scenes. (Lionsgate).


Mildred Pierce (1945) Melodrama casts noirish shadows in this portrait of maternal sacrifice from the Hollywood master Michael Curtiz. Its iconic performance by Joan Crawford as Mildred, a single mother hell-bent on freeing her children from the stigma of economic hardship, solidified Crawford's career comeback and gave the actor her only Oscar. But as Mildred photo for Mildred Pierce pulls herself up by the bootstraps, first as an unflappable waitress and eventually as the well-heeled owner of a successful restaurant chain, the ingratitude of her materialistic firstborn (a diabolical Ann Blyth) becomes a venomous serpent's tooth, setting in motion an endless cycle of desperate overtures and heartless recriminations. Recasting James M. Cain's rich psychological novel as a murder mystery, this bitter cocktail of blind parental love and all-American ambition is both unremittingly hard-boiled and sumptuously emotional. New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: New conversation about "Mildred Pierce" with critics Molly Haskell and Robert Polito; excerpt from a 1970 episode of "The David Frost Show" featuring actor Joan Crawford; "Joan Crawford: The Ultimate Movie Star," a 2002 feature-length documentary on Crawford's life and career; Q&A with actor Ann Blyth from 2002, conducted by film historian Eddie Muller; segment from a 1969 episode of the "Today" show featuring novelist James M. Cain; trailer; an essay by critic Imogen Sara Smith. (The Criterion Collection).

Nocturnal Animals (2016) Director:Tom Ford. Stars: Amy Adams, Isla Fisher, Jake Gyllenhaal, Armie Hammer, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Michael Shannon, Laura Linney, Karl Glusman. A wealthy art gallery owner is haunted by her ex-husband's novel, a violent thriller she interprets as a symbolic revenge tale. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, VOD, Digital, UltraViolet (cloud). Extras: Three part featurette, "The Making of Nocturnal Animals": "Building the Story," "The Look of Nocturnal Animals" and "The Filmmaker’s Eye: Tom Ford." (Universal).

photo for Psychomania (aka The Death Wheelers) Psychomania (aka The Death Wheelers) (1973) The tale of zombie bikers run amok in southern England. The Living Dead are a delinquent biker gang, fond of causing havoc on British roadways and making out in graveyards. Gang leader Tom (Nicky Henson) also has a Satanist for a mother, and when he discovers the secret of immortality, the name of his motley crew takes on a more literal meaning. Directed by Hammer veteran Don Sharp ("The Kiss of the Vampire") and co-starring Beryl Reid ("Dr. Phibes Rises Again") and George Sanders ("Village of the Damned"), "Psychomania" is a wonderfully offbeat gem, outlandish and eccentric in equal measure. 2K restoration from preservation negatives. Formats: Blu-ray/DVD Combo. Extras: New interview with star Nicky Henson; "Return of the Living Dead," an archive featurette containing interviews with actors Henson, Mary Larkin, Denis Gilmore, Roy Holder and Rocky Taylor; "Sound of Psychomania," an archive interview with composer John Cameron; "Riding Free," an archive interview with "Riding Free" singer Harvey Andrews; "Hell for Leather," a new featurette on the company who supplied the film's costumes; "Remastering Psychomania," a look at the film's restoration from the original 35mm black and white separation masters: theatrical trailer; reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by the Twins of Evil. (Arrow Video/MVD Entertainment).

Seasons (2016) After traveling the world alongside migrating birds ("Winged Migration") and diving the oceans with whales and manta rays ("Oceans"), filmmaker Jacques Perrin and Jacques Cluzaud return to more familiar ground: the lush green forests and megafauna that emerged across Europe following the last Ice Age. Following a winter that had gone on for 80,000 years, the ice retreated, the landscape metamorphosed, a cycle of seasons was established, and the beasts occupied their new kingdom. It was only later that man arrived to share this habitat, first tentatively as migratory hunter/gatherers, then as settled agriculturalists, and later via industry and warfare. Filled with exceptional footage of a variety of animals in the wild, "Seasons" offers an awe-inspiring and thought-provoking tale of the long and tumultuous shared history that inextricably binds humankind with the natural world. Formats: DVD, VOD. (Music Box Films).

3 Classic Films by Claude Chabrol BLU-RAY DEBUT A collection of films by Claude Chabrol, one of the most prolific and widely respected of French film directors. As one of the prime instigators of the French New Wave, Chabrol directed lean narrative films whose keenly observed realism typically drew inspiration from the suspense film and psychological thriller. The films: "Betty" (1992), Torment (L'enfer) (1994) and The Swindle (1997). Formats: Blu-ray Disc. (Cohen Film Collection).

photo for Tie the Knot Tie the Knot (2016) Parvesh Cheena, Tara Reid, Karishma Ahluwalia, Omi Vaidya. When an American woman takes an impromptu journey to Mumbai to get away from her overbearing mother, she befriends an Indian woman striving to balance her family's culture with modern-day demands. Formats: DVD. (Monarch).

Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (1988) Pedro Almodóvar makes telephones, a mambo taxi, and a burning mattress into delirious plot points and indelible images in his international breakthrough, "Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown." Melding melodrama with screwball farce, this Academy Award–nominated black comedy secured the auteur's place at the vanguard of modern Spanish cinema. Continuing Almodóvar's exploration of the female psyche, the film tells the story of Pepa, an actor -- played by the director's frequent collaborator Carmen Maura -- who resolves to kill herself with a batch of sleeping-pill-laced gazpacho after her lover leaves her. Fortunately, she is photo for Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdowninterrupted by a string of visitors, setting in motion a deliciously chaotic series of events. The filmmaker channeled inspiration by the likes of Alfred Hitchcock and Douglas Sirk into his own unique vision, arriving at the irreverent sense of humor and vibrant visual sense that define his work today. With a sensational ensemble cast of early Almodóvar regulars that also includes Antonio Banderas and Rossy de Palma, this film shows an artist in total control of his craft. New high-definition digital restoration, supervised by director Pedro Almodóvar and producer Agustín Almodóvar, with 2.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray. Alternate 5.1 surround soundtrack, presented in DTS-HD Master Audio on the Blu-ray. Formats: DVD, Blu-ray Disc. Extras: New interviews with director Pedro Almodóvar, actor Carmen Maura, and producer Agustín Almodóvar; new discussion by film scholar Richard Peña of the film's impact in Spain and abroad; trailer; an essay by critic Elvira Lindo. (The Criterion Collection).


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