Brave is hitting DVD and Blu-ray the week, which is probably the biggest title of the new releases, as are two of the summer’s misfires, but the biggest title is Lawrence of Arabia, and it’s fair to say they don’t get much bigger.
- 2 Days in New York: Julie Delphy has transitioned from being a hot French import into an auteur, and between collaborating on the scripts for the Before Sunrise movies and now with 2 Days in New York, her second film as a director. But though she may be more than just a pretty face, this one got okay reviews before shuffling off to home video.
- Brave, Pixar Short Films Collection: Volume 2: Brave is in an awkward position. It’s a film that feels compromised, perhaps partly because the original director was fired during the production, but then also it’s the first Pixar film that has a female protagonist, so there’s a lot to like about the film. But it doesn’t feel “Pixar great.” For those looking for perfection, they might be better served by the shorts collection, which showcases the last handful of Pixar shorts.
- The Dick Van Dyke Show: The Complete Series, Doctor Who: Series Seven, Part One, Friends: The Complete Series: This week’s Television on DVD and Blu-ray highlights one of the greatest television shows to ever air. Dick Van Dyke that is. Friends is also arriving on Blu-ray, while the good doctor has also made an appearance in 1080p.
- Nitro Circus: The Movie – 3D: This movie collects a series of amazing and impressive stunts and is in 3D. It hit theaters briefly, but it strikes me this will find more of an audience at home where good stunts can be rewound ad-infinitum.
- Savages: Oliver Stone’s latest movie hit theaters this summer, but couldn’t compete with superheroes and cartoons. With an all-star cast that includes Salma Hayek, Benicio Del Toro, John Travolta and – um – Taylor Kitsch, this sex, drugs and violence film didn’t catch the zeitgeist, which seems to have been the only way it would have made a better impression.
- The Watch: This combination of actors who normally don’t miss fell flat on its face this summer, which is weird. Maybe it was the R rating, but Fox seemed to let go a picture that starred Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, and Jonah Hill. It could be because the picture wasn’t very good, but that hasn’t stopped a number of movies from doing that much better.
- Vamps: Amy Heckerling and Alicia Silverstone reunite to do a vampire take on Clueless, with the always lovely Krysten Ritter in the mix. Like many films these days, it enjoyed a brief theatrical run a couple days ago and is now hitting the home market. We hear it’s actually pretty good, so there’s that.
- The Barbarian and the Geisha, The Big Trail, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure: The Fox catalog dump features some old westerns and a comedy classic. Alas, currently they’ve only releasing the first Bill and Ted film, which is too bad as there’s a small cult around Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey.
- Empire of the Sun: 25th Anniversary Edition, The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946), The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981), Watchmen: Collector’s Edition: Warner Brother’s catalog titles of the week includes a classic film noir, quite possibly Steven Spielberg’s most underrated movies, and a reissue of Watchmen, which went out of print for a while for whatever reason.
- Lawrence of Arabia: 50th Anniversary Collector’s Edition: The must-own title of the week. No question.
- My Big Fat Greek Wedding: 10th Anniversary Special Edition: This was the little picture that could, and managed to do huge numbers in 2002. These days, I don’t think people think about it because some pictures just play better with big audiences. This is one of those.
- Weekend: Arguably Jean-Luc Godard’s final masterpiece, Weekend shows the playful director embracing the apocalypse and the revolution for a film that is smart, infuriating, and sometimes sexy. That is to say: classic Godard.
What are you picking up this week?