Blu-ray Highlights for 3/8/11: What Are You Buying?


Yes, a horde of zombies is coming to Blu-ray this week, and other stuff too. Here’s the complete list of what’s being released:

The 2010 fall TV season was pretty lackluster when it came to new series. ‘The Walking Dead‘ on AMC was one bright spot on the schedule. I don’t think that the following five episodes of the short season quite lived up to the potential of the stunning premiere, but it’s still a very good show. The Blu-ray is currently selling for an incredibly reasonable price. Check this one out.

The day-and-date situation for new movies is a little bleaker, unfortunately. Even with the combined star power of Harrison Ford, Diane Keaton and Rachel McAdams – not to mention J.J. Abrams producing – ‘Morning Glory‘ wilted from critical indifference and withered away at the box office this past November. Likewise, Russell Crowe’s star continued to fade with his latest dud, ‘The Next Three Days‘. Is anyone excited to buy either of these movies? I doubt it. Something tells me that ‘Jackass 3‘ will handily outsell both of them, despite the lack of real 3D on the Blu-ray release. (Some copies may include a crummy anaglyph 3D version.)

Perhaps this is a good time to look beyond mainstream Hollywood? ‘Inside Job‘ is the latest acclaimed documentary about our country’s financial meltdown. This one even won the Oscar. Depressing stuff, maybe, but timely and important all the same.

A friend of mine was one of the producers on ‘Four Lions‘, the controversial black comedy from British satirist Chris Morris. The movie is about a group of incompetent Islamic jihadists planning a suicide bombing mission in England. It’s very darkly comic – emphasis on dark. Adam Sandler and Kevin James are already planning to star in the American remake. (OK, that last part is thankfully a joke.)

On the catalog front, a couple titles of interest stand out. Depending on your point of view, John Boorman’s ‘Excalibur‘ is either a breathtaking fantasy classic or a muddled mess. It’s also quite possibly both. The movie’s dark and gritty photography has never translated all that well to home video. Warner’s earlier HD DVD edition was roundly criticized for its old, misframed transfer. I’m not clear on whether the new Blu-ray has been remastered or not.

Finally, we have Japanese animation legend Hayao Miyazaki’s 1984 feature ‘Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind‘. This was actually his first movie under the Studio Ghibli banner. While this isn’t my favorite of Miyazaki’s works, it’s an interesting film that laid the groundwork for many of the signature themes that would recur later in his career.


  1. Dragonball Z Kai Part 4 is arriving today! However, I doubt I will be able to watch it, I spent all last night watching Part 3, and I promised my roommate that we would finish last week’s American Idol tonight.

    I will probably also pick up Jonah: A Veggietales movie tomorrow (payday), and give my DVD copy to some kids who will highly enjoy it.

  2. I got THE WALKING DEAD and THE NEXT THREE DAYS this week. I love the former, and the later was filmed in my hometown, so I’m kinda partial to it.