Blu-ray Highlights: Week of May 15th, 2016 – Burn Her Anyway!

There are ways of telling which Blu-ray this week is the most promising. Logically, if the disc weighs the same as a duck, it’s made of wood. And therefore, it must be…

Which Blu-rays Interest You This Week (5/17/16)?

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New Releases (Blu-Ray)

The Witch‘ – This period horror thriller about a Puritan family tormented by what they believe is a supernatural menace was one of the most buzzed-about movies from the January 2015 Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Directing Award and was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize. Nonetheless, the film didn’t secure a general theatrical release until more than a year later. When it finally arrived, it became a breakout hit and one of the best-reviewed pictures of the year so far. The trailers look incredible. I’ve been looking forward to seeing this for quite a while.

Dirty Grandpa‘ – Considering it from his perspective, Robert De Niro’s late-career shift into comedy makes perfect sense. Movies like this are easy paychecks for the actor. He doesn’t have to put a lot of thought or effort into them, and many of them have been inexplicably popular with audiences. Unfortunately, for the fans who know how much more he’s capable of, watching the once-great star of ‘Raging Bull’ and ‘Taxi Driver’ clown around as a horny and foul-mouthed senior who repeatedly humiliates his uptight grandson (Zac Efron) during a road trip is a truly painful experience. Given the scathing reviews and weak box office for this, one can hope that De Niro has finally hit rock bottom. Sadly, however, if ‘The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle’ didn’t already get him there, I’m not sure anything will.

A Perfect Day‘ – Benicio Del Toro and Tim Robbins play foreign aid workers in a mid-1990s Balkan war zone. While that subject matter may sound awfully heavy, the movie is played as a ‘M*A*S*H’-style satire of the bureaucratic red tape that makes such a job nearly impossible. Reviews were mixed.


Surely, if you didn’t buy the ‘Point Break‘ remake when it was released on Blu-ray back in March, you must have been waiting to experience its glorious teal-and-orange visuals in 4k HDR. That’s the only reason, right?

[Update: Sorry, looks like this has been pushed back to June 7th.]

Catalog Titles

The Warner Archive continues its love affair with Bogie and Bacall by releasing their third pairing (of only four) in Delmer Daves’ noir drama ‘Dark Passage‘. Currently, the only of the Bogart/Bacall collaborations not available on Blu-ray is the couple’s first, ‘To Have and Have Not’.

Criterion brings us the 1960 Japanese drama ‘The Naked Island‘, which chronicles the back-breaking struggles of a family who are the sole inhabitants of a tiny island in the Seto Inland Sea. The 96-minute film was shot in black-and white and completely without any spoken dialogue.

A prank phone call goes disastrously wrong in ‘I Saw What You Did‘, a 1965 chiller from gimmick master William Castle. The corny Joan Crawford vehicle arrives in high-def courtesy of Scream Factory.


If you don’t subscribe to Neflix but still want to binge on ‘Orange Is the New Black‘, the third season is now available on Blu-ray.

Aside from some anime that I know nothing about, the week’s only other TV release is the fourth (and final) season of PBS’ period drama ‘Mr. Selfridge‘.

My $.02

I’m eager to rent ‘The Witch’. Meanwhile, ‘Dark Passage’ and ‘The Naked Island’ will go on my wish list for later purchase.

What’s your outlook for the week?


  1. Bolo

    I really liked ‘The Witch’. It’s the second best movie I’ve seen so far this year. It’s probably more of an unsettling drama than what people think of as a pure horror film. I didn’t go in expecting constant scares, so I really liked it.

  2. Lord Bowler

    Nothing for me this week… I’ll pick up some catalog titles that have been available for awhile.

    Just rented Point Break, and was disappointed by it. So, I’ll not be picking this up in 4k.

  3. NJScorpio

    I LOVED ‘The Witch’, already bought it digitally because I was really in the mood for a movie a week or so ago. I don’t regret it.

  4. Deaditelord

    Will rent The Witch and stream Assassination Classroom, but I don’t see myself buying anything this week.

  5. William Henley

    Nothing new for me this week, which is good, because I am picking up a TON of discs that dropped in price over the past three weeks. I have picked up Sailor Moon Parts 1 and 2 and Sailor Moon R Parts 1 and 2 (so that was like around $150 after taxes, and those were the sale prices), picked up I Love Lucy Season 2, Rick and Morty Season 1, then Airwolf finally shipped, then from I picked up Heidi (2005) and Heidi (1965) (BTW, IMDB has the wrong poster for this, they have the 1952 poster on the 1965 release) as well as the Heidi television show (Those were all DVDs, I then turned around and bought Heidi 2005 in 1080 off of iTunes). Also off of iTunes I picked up Walls by Gateway Worship in 1080. and I picked up both seasons of The Willis Family, Jill and Jessa Counting On and the first two seasons of Bringing Up Bates (I had a season pass on season 3). Oh I also I picked up 2 copies each of 3 different Game of Thrones coffee table books (maps, pictures, histories, etc), one for me and one for my parents, and then I picked up Seasons 1 and 2 of Game of Thrones steelbooks for the Atmos soundtrack and gave seasons 1 and 2 to my parents. Oh, I lost my Kindle on a plane, and the airline never found it, so I finally picked up a new Paperwhite. Oh, and then I am ripping all my TV Shows to my Plex server, so I had to pick up another 6 TB harddrive (I watch most of my TV shows on the LCD in the bedroom, {except GoT} and I don’t have a Blu-Ray player in there (or a place to put one, or additional electrical outlets to plug one in). So this past month has been VERY expensive for me.

    I am also trying to pick up some Blu-Rays that are only available in Sweden of Swedish movies and television shows, but only one of those is available from any of the Amazon sites and they are charging like 4x the price as it is an import. I tried about six different stores in Sweden, but only three of them would ship outside of Sweden, and then only to EU countries. Now, I do have all of these on DVD, but the movies were chopped up into television episodes, so 4×3 standard def, 25fps instead of 24, so subtitles you find on the net won’t line up, and then the DVDs ONLY have the German dub (at least I speak SOME German). I do have friends in the EU, so I might see if they can get them for me, but I am also looking at the possibility of setting up an iTunes account under a different region store and seeing if that works, but that may be more trouble than having a third party buy the discs for me. Sigh

    So yeah, lots of movie and television purchases over the past few weeks. I need to stop – money is draining from my account faster than its going in.

  6. Csm101

    Man, I just found out there will be one less place to purchase movies. Moviestop:Hastings is going out of business. One less place to pick up collectibles and harder to find movies, sigh….

    • William Henley

      I know Moviestop was acquired by Hastings. Is Hastings now going out of business, or just the old Moviestop stores? I haven’t heard anything about Hastings – there are none in about 50 miles of me, but a lot of the smaller towns have them, and I order from them online quite often – great placed for used books and movies

      • Csm101

        I don’t know about Hastings online, but all the brick and mortar stores that were previously Moviestop, are shutting down nation wide. They’re not accepting trade-ins or receiving any new shipments. The ones in my area are telling me they should be out by early July.

        • William Henley

          That’s sad. I am not familar with the former Moviestop stores, but I used to hang out at Hastings quite often in college – they were the only place that would rent Anime, and the ONLY place at the time that would rent the (then) NEW DVD format, and the only place int that town that had Manga. Hastings is truly unique – focuses on anything that does with entertainment – from movies and books, to games and costumes and movie paraphanalia. Whenever I am going through a small town that has a Hastings, I still tend to stop off – they are one of the few B&M stores I like.

  7. Thulsadoom

    Who are you, Sir Josh, who is so wise in the ways of science?

    She turned me into a NEWT!!! (I got better)

    Look forward to seeing it. 🙂 Not really heard much about it so far, but it certainly sounds interesting. Can’t say anything else there is tempting.

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