With one of the biggest blockbusters of the year hitting Blu-ray and UHD this week, you’ll have to forgive other studios for stepping out of the way. If Marvel’s new space epic isn’t your thing, we also have some classic art films and a bunch of TV box sets on deck.
‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2‘ – As one of the few movies I actually saw in the theater this year, I’m relieved to report that James Gunn’s sprawling sequel is just a quirky and delightful as the original. It’ll also undoubtedly make splendid eye candy as Disney’s first Ultra HD Blu-ray release. Of the options available, Best Buy has the best overall package with a UHD/Blu-ray/3D SteelBook. Unfortunately, that edition has been sold out online for months, but Best Buy sometimes makes new stock available the day of release, so be sure to check back early Tuesday morning.
Having previously released his cult classic ‘Repo Man’, the Criterion Collection reteams with director Alex Cox for a new 4k restoration of ‘Sid & Nancy‘, his acclaimed trek through the 1970s punk rock scene by way of a bio-pic about Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious (played by Gary Oldman in a blistering performance).
After that, Criterion gets perhaps a little more sedate with ‘La Poison‘, a 1951 French dark comedy about a man plotting the perfect crime to murder his wife.
Long inexplicably absent from the format, the Coen brothers’ Palme d’Or-winning Hollywood satire ‘Barton Fink‘ finally makes its North American Blu-ray debut courtesy of Kino. I’d have preferred to see the movie licensed to Criterion, who surely have put more work into a new video master, but this disc will do for fans until that eventually happens.
Shout! Factory adds to its Shout Select line with a 15th Anniversary Edition of the feel-good Maori coming-of-age drama ‘Whale Rider‘.
Arrow Video released the schlocky ’80s splatter flick ‘Society‘ on Blu-ray in 2015 and now offers it in a new SteelBook.
Weird fact: Nora Ephron wrote the screenplay for the 1990 Mob comedy ‘My Blue Heaven‘ based loosely on research her husband Nicholas Pileggi had done for ‘Goodfellas’, which was released to theaters one month later. One of these movies turned out to be a classic, and the other is a mostly-forgotten Steve Martin dud. (Hint: Steve Martin isn’t in ‘Goodfellas’.) Someone at the studio apparently considers it worthy of a Blu-ray release through the Warner Archive, though.
The TV scene is hopping this week. Marvel prepares for the debut of its Netflix team-up series ‘The Defenders’ with the first season of ‘Jessica Jones‘ and the second season of ‘Daredevil‘.
Also available are the second seasons of ‘Ash vs. Evil Dead‘, ‘Lucifer‘ and ‘Supergirl‘, as well as the seventh season of ‘The Walking Dead‘.
I tried to preorder Best Buy’s ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ UHD/3D SteelBook, but it sold out online in a blink. I’m hoping more copies become available tomorrow. If not, I was able to get a preorder in place for the UK edition, which is the same SteelBook case but without the UHD disc. All things considered, I’d rather get the more comprehensive Best Buy package and cancel the Zavvi order. We’ll have to see how that works out.
I already have copies of ‘Barton Fink’ and ‘Sid & Nancy’ for review. (I would have bought them regardless.)
That’s about all I need this week. What are your plans?