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article imageReview: New on DVD for October 2 Special

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By Sarah Gopaul     Oct 2, 2012 in Entertainment
This week’s releases include a terrifying parental bond; a Disney classic’s silver anniversary; an ‘80s favourite; a quirky TV series; an ill-advised pact with dark forces; and one of the greatest love stories ever told.
A Wedding (DVD)
Dino’s wedding to Muffin begins well enough – until one disaster begets another. Add one beleaguered priest, a not-so-blushing bridesmaid, an obsessed wedding planner, a drunk doctor and a relative who opts to pass on before the ceremony and suddenly you’ve got yourself a wedding.
Special features not available. (Anchor Bay Entertainment)
Untitled
Anchor Bay Entertainment
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Chained (Blu-ray)
When he was 9 years old, Tim and his mother were abducted by taxi-driving serial killer Bob (Vincent D’Onofrio). Tim’s mother was murdered. Tim was kept as a chained slave, forced to bury the bodies of young women Bob drags home and keep scrapbooks of the crimes. Now a teenager, Tim (Eamon Farren) and Bob share a depraved father/son/protégé relationship. But who will ultimately sever the bond between ‘family’ and unimaginable horror?
Special features not available. (Anchor Bay Entertainment)
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Disney Home Entertainment
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Cinderella (DVD & Blu-ray combo pack)
Everyone orders Cinderella around: her cruel stepmother, her awful stepsisters -- even the big clock in the church tower tells her when to start another day of drudgery. But they can't stop her from dreaming, and Cinderella has faith that someday her wishes will come true. When an invitation to the royal ball arrives, Cinderella is sure her time has come -- until her stepsisters, with the encouragement of Lady Tremaine, tear her gown to shreds. Just when Cinderella believes all is lost, her Fairy Godmother appears, and with a wave of her wand and “Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo,” transforms an ordinary pumpkin into a magnificent coach and Cinderella’s rags into a gorgeous gown, then sends her off to the Royal Ball. But Cinderella’s enchanted evening must end when the spell is broken at midnight. It takes the help of her daring animal mice friends and a perfect fit into a glass slipper to create the ultimate fairy tale ending.
The bloody and somewhat gruesome Grimm fairy tale is polished with some Disney magic and transformed into a colorful, fun and cute story filled with memorable sing-along songs. The studio continues its love affair with mice by creating a group of the most adorable helpers that keep Cinderella's secrets and make sure she gets to the ball. Of course Cinderella has an uncanny relationship with nature, as do most Disney princesses. Her step-mother and step-sisters are true villains, treating the real heiress to the household with cruelty and contempt. But Cinderella always has hope that one day her wishes will be answered and she'll be rescued from the situation. This is one of the original damsels in distress narratives with all the fixings for a fantasy escape.
Special features not available. (Disney Home Entertainment)
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Warner Bros. Home Entertainment
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Dark Shadows (Blu-ray)
Barnabas (Johnny Depp) has the world at his feet – or at least the town of Collinsport, Maine. The master of Collinwood Manor, Barnabas is rich, powerful and an inveterate playboy, until he makes the grave mistake of breaking the heart of Angelique Bouchard (Eva Green). A witch, in every sense of the word, Angelique dooms him to a fate worse than death: turning him into a vampire, and then burying him alive. Two centuries later, Barnabas is inadvertently freed from his tomb and emerges into the very changed world of 1972. He returns to Collinwood Manor to find that his once-grand estate has fallen into ruin. The dysfunctional remnants of the Collins family have fared little better, each harboring their own dark secrets.
Special features not available. (Warner Bros. Home Entertainment)
Girl 6 (DVD)
A frustrated New York City actor (Theresa Randle) reluctantly takes a job as a phone sex operator. Here, unlike her previous dealings with potential employers, her (female) boss is kind, caring, and sensitive. She ends up too engrossed in her work and starts to lose touch with reality as she becomes a different woman to both her friend and neighbor (Spike Lee) and her romantic, shoplifting ex-husband (Isaiah Washington).
Special features not available. (Anchor Bay Entertainment)
Great White Hype (DVD)
When the champ's promoter, Rev. Sultan (Samuel L. Jackson) decides something new is needed to boost the marketability of the boxing matches, he searches and finds the only man to ever beat the champ (Damon Wayans.) The problem is that he isn't a boxer anymore and he's white. However, once Rev. Sultan convinces him to fight, the impending battle is set up as the fight of the century.
Special features not available. (Anchor Bay Entertainment)
Magic City: The Complete First Season (Blu-ray)
It begins in the dangerous and decadent 1959, in Miami’s Miramar Playa Hotel where hotelier Ike Evans (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) is conjuring up ways to finance his dream. He has essentially sold his soul to the devil: mob boss Ben “The Butcher” Diamond (Danny Huston). Ike’s wife Vera (Olga Kurylenko), a former showgirl, and his three children think he is an honorable man, but he just can’t break his pact with the most notorious criminal in town. So Ike’s life is a façade: his home and his business must be kept separate – but it remains to be seen if he has the sleight of hand to pull it off.
Special features include: “Starz Studios: Magic City”; “The Cars of Magic City”; “The Style of Magic City”; “Building An Empire”; “The Golden Age of Music”; and “Miami Beach: The Real Magic City.” (Anchor Bay Entertainment)
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Warner Bros. Home Entertainment
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Masters of the Universe (Blu-ray)
Planet Eternia and the Castle of Greyskull are under threat from the evil Skeletor (Frank Langella) who wants to take over the planet. A group of freedom fighters, led by the heroic He-Man (Dolph Lundgren) are accidentally transported to Earth by a mysterious Cosmic Key which holds the power to make Skeletor all-powerful. Once on Earth, He-Man joins alliances with two teenagers as they attempt to find the key and return home.
What began as an enchanting Saturday morning cartoon was transformed into a live-action adventure that is the definition of '80s cinema. Overzealous displays of testosterone, small creatures that accompany the hero on his quest, and ridiculous dialogue that is more endearing than stupid make this film a beloved classic. Lundgren is a very suitable Prince Adam (a.k.a. He-Man), both physically and in his performance. Langella is an excellent Skeletor, invoking the dimwitted evil that made him such an ineffective villain. It's undeniably cheesy, particularly when taking the actual key into consideration, but it is a guilty pleasure for a whole generation.
Special features not available. (Warner Bros. Home Entertainment)
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Fox Home Entertainment
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New Girl: The Complete First Season (DVD)
After a bad breakup, free-spirited optimist Jess (Zooey Deschanel) moves in with three bachelors who have plenty of issues of their own. Winston (Lamorne Morris) is a former athlete in a professional rut, Nick (Jake Johnson) is a law school dropout, and Schmidt (Max Greenfield) is a wannabe womanizer in love with himself. Together with her super-hot BFF Cece (Hannah Simone), Jess discovers that hanging out with the guys can be a challenging and hilarious adventure.
This is a series not everyone was drawn to right away. Deschanel is a sweetheart that you wanted to root for, but the show did not have a strong start. Jess’ doormat personality was infuriating, as was her approach to any difficult situation. Even her roommates were too insensitive to handle. But then a moment occurs in which she stands up to her ex-boyfriend and the guys step up to her aid, and it gets better from there. There are still moments that make you cringe, but they are fewer and far between (or at least less annoying). Eventually arriving at the episode that includes a bizarre and confusing drinking game in which the floor is lava and U.S. presidents play a role makes it all worth it.
Special features not available. (Fox Home Entertainment)
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Disney Home Entertainment
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People Like Us (DVD & Blu-ray combo pack)
Sam (Chris Pine) is drowning in debt, but this last sale is going to set him free. Until the one before it goes sour and his commission is taken to clean up the mess. To make matters worse, in the midst of dealing with the possibility of legal repercussions, his father dies. They weren't very close, but it still complicates things since he has to put everything on hold to go home to be with his mother. It's clear their relationship is also strained, but it's convention. When Sam meets with the lawyer to discuss his father's will, he's smacked with the biggest complication: his father has left $100,000 to a secret daughter, which he wants Sam to deliver. Torn between keeping the money or fulfilling his father's last wish, he finally opts to at least meet his sister, Frankie (Elizabeth Banks) - and her son, Josh. Except he leaves out the part that he is her brother.
Most families have secrets; things they don't want the outside world to know, or something they don't even want members of their own household to find out. The content of these secrets can vary in importance and possible impact. But there is one surety: it almost always comes out - one way or another. This film is built around that notion as first the father’s secret is revealed and eventually the son’s. Other than the contrived storyline that continues to push the characters forward and together, this film has an underlying creep factor. Sam is knowingly spending time with his biological sister as she obviously develops non-platonic feelings for him, all the while stringing her along to satisfy his own curiosity. The inappropriateness of their relationship increases as the narrative progresses and is only made worse because Frankie is completely unaware. This element is quite distracting from what was likely meant to be a heartfelt story about family.
Special features are unavailable. (Disney Home Entertainment)
Pet Sematary (Blu-ray)
After moving to an idyllic home in the countryside, life seems perfect for the Creed family...but not for long. Louis and Rachel Creed and their two young children settle in to a house that sits next door to a pet cemetery, built on an ancient Indian burial ground. Their mysterious new neighbour, Jud Crandall (Fred Gwynne), hides the cemetery's darkest secret – until a family tragedy brings the secret to life. Now, an unthinkable evil is about to be resurrected.
More than 150 of Stephen King's stories have been made for the big and small screen, but only a small number have been personally adapted by the writer. This is one of those rarities. But one has to wonder if someone with more distance from the source material would have produced a tighter narrative. The extraneous narrative about the mother's dead sister adds nothing to film. On the other hand, despite the stupidity of utilizing such unnatural magic, the core narrative about bringing the dead back to life is entertaining. Fred Gwynne is great as the knowledgeable old man of the tale and Miko Hughes is outstanding as the three-year-old tyke that gains a penchant for human flesh. “Come play with me.”
Special features include: commentary by director Mary Lambert, “Stephen King territory”; “The Characters”; and “Filming the Horror” featurettes. (Paramount Home Media Distribution)
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Fox Home Entertainment
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The Princess Bride: 25th Anniversary edition (Blu-ray)
An avuncular Grandpa (Peter Falk) gradually seduces his skeptical grandson (Fred Savage) into the absurd, irresistible melodrama of the title story. A lowly stable boy, Westley (Cary Elwes), pledges his love to the beautiful Buttercup (Robin Wright), only to be abducted and reportedly killed by pirates while Buttercup is betrothed to the evil Prince Humperdinck (Chris Sarandon). Even as Buttercup herself is kidnapped by a giant (Andre the Giant), a scheming criminal mastermind (Wallace Shawn), and Inigo Montoya (Mandy Patinkin), a master Spanish swordsman, a mysterious masked follows in pursuit.
This is a story that bridges generations. A single viewing results in a love for the characters and admiration for the exquisite narrative. “As you wish” takes on a whole new meaning and the line “Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.” has been immortalized in the hearts of fans (and various t-shirt designs). The Cliffs of Insanity and the Fire Swamp teeming with R.O.U.S. (rodents of unusual size) are practically characters in themselves. Cameos by Billy Crystal as the reluctant Miracle Max and Peter Cook as the clergyman with a speech impediment and inclination for long winded ceremonies are highlights of the picture, creating memorable roles from minor parts. Not only is this film a must-see, it’s a must-own for those days when you need a little comfort – there’s a reason the story is being relayed to a sick kid.
Special features not available. (Fox Home Entertainment)
Shooting Fish (DVD)
Aristocratic-but-flat-broke Georgie (Kate Beckinsale) needs cash for a good cause. Enter Jez (Stuart Townsend) and Dylan (Dan Futterman), two young men who scam the rich and give the money to a pair of poor, deserving orphans: themselves. However, after they meet the lovely, mysterious Georgie, these modern-day Robin Hoods are ensnared in a hilariously complicated net when she steals their hearts.
Special features not available. (Anchor Bay Entertainment)
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Entertainment One
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Touch the Sky (DVD)
Using a fly-on-the-wall-style, the documentary follows owner and founder of Cirque du Soleil, Guy Laliberté, as he makes his way to the International Space Station (ISS). From the thrill of training in Star City, floating through the confines of the ISS and literally watching the world go by, to seeing sparks as he re-enters the atmosphere, viewers follow Guy as he lives the risks. It also shines a spotlight on the fascinating cosmonauts and astronauts who make up the global space community encountered during the adventure, providing unprecedented insight into the world of space exploration.
If you’ve ever wanted to go behind the curtain of space travel, this doc gives you a fairly unfettered look at a not-so-average man’s flirtation with scientific excellence. The preparation is understandably grueling, including a seemingly endless list of tests, dietary restrictions and interviews. Laliberté is candid in his commentary about the process, from his fears to his annoyances to the excitement that inevitably accompanies such a venture. After an arduous process, the entrepreneur’s dream finally becomes a reality. But the real deal isn’t always everything you’d hoped it would be – particularly when there are so many variables and risks for error.
There are no special features. (Entertainment One)
Untitled
Anchor Bay Entertainment
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Under the Same Moon (DVD)
Even across thousands of miles, the special bond between a mother and son can never be broken. It gives hope to Carlitos, a scrappy nine-year-old boy whose mother, Rosario, has gone to America to build a better life for both of them. While Rosario struggles for a brighter future, fate forces Carlitos’ hand and he embarks on an extraordinary journey to find her.
Special features not available. (Anchor Bay Entertainment)
Unfaithfully Yours (DVD)
Claude Eastman (Dudley Moore) is a composer who has it all – an acclaimed career, oodles of money and a ravishing Italian wife, Daniella (Nastassja Kinski). However, his life hits a sour note when he suspects his wife of cheating with handsome nemesis Max Stein (Armand Assante). In fact, he’s so convinced of her infidelity, he plans to orchestrate a delicious act of revenge.
Special features not available. (Anchor Bay Entertainment)
article:333957:14::0
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