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New Home Video: Nov. 12-19, 2012

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This Week: TV | Film | Video | Hardcovers | Paperbacks | Trailers

Out on DVD and Blu-Ray this week: A big release week as we edge toward the holidays, with a feisty warrior-princess, a bunch of ordinary Joes fighting an alien menace, the Ponds' swan song, the succubus who wouldn't knuckle under, a lyrical Japanese animated fantasy, Buck and Hawk exploring the galaxy together, a grab-bag of Pixar shorts, and the latest crop of genre has-beens facing off in a Syfy movie snow-down.

Brave (2012)

Brave
Pixar Animation Studios

Energetic, invigorating, and lushly rendered, Brave is a good movie that just doesn't happen to be the kind of cultural milestone that Pixar has cumulatively led us to expect from them.
Formats: Blu-Ray, DVD, 3D, and Digital Copy.
The story: Determined to make her own path in life, Princess Merida defies a custom that brings chaos to her kingdom. Granted one wish, Merida must rely on her bravery and her archery skills to undo a beastly curse.
Starring: Kelly Macdonald (Merida), Billy Connolly (Fergus), Emma Thompson (Elinor), Julie Walters (The Witch), Robbie Coltrane (Lord Dingwall), Kevin McKidd (Lord MacGuffin/Young MacGuffin), Craig Ferguson (Lord Macintosh), Sally Kinghorn (Maudie), Eilidh Fraser (Maudie), Peigi Barker (Young Merida), Steven Cree (Young Macintosh), Steve Purcell (The Crow), Callum O'Neill (Wee Dingwall), Patrick Doyle (Martin), John Ratzenberger (Gordon).
Directed by: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman, and Steve Purcell.
Features: Audio Commentary: Director Mark Andrews, co-director Steve Purcell, story supervisor Brian Larsen and editor Nick Smith; Short Films (HD, 14 minutes); Behind the Scenes (HD, 50 minutes); Extended Scenes (HD, 13 minutes); Promotional Pieces (HD, 14 minutes); Fergus & Mor'Du: An Alternate Opening (HD, 3 minutes); Fallen Warriors (HD, 2 minutes); Dirty Hairy People (HD, 4 minutes); It is English... Sort Of (HD, 4 minutes); Angus (HD, 3 minutes); The Tapestry (HD, 4 minutes); Art Galleries (HD): "Characters," "Color Keys," "Development Art," "Environments" and "Graphics."

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The Watch (2012)

The Watch
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

Why is it that comic actors unrelentingly assume that bro farces can get away with being lazy, low-brow exercises in familiar actors clowning for the camera and making jokes about intoxication and bodily emissions? This sort of thing has been going on since the Rat Pack, I guess, but no one seems to cotton on to the fact that these films are not only extremely unnecessary but palpably erode the reputations of the actors, writers, and directors involved. That this one is partly redeemed by the one star that isn't coasting on his past successes (Richard Ayoade) only reinforces the trope-exemplifying extraneousness of The Watch.
Formats: Blu-Ray, DVD, and Digital Copy.
The story: Suburban dads who form a neighborhood watch group as a way to get out of their day-to-day family routines find themselves defending the Earth from an alien invasion.
Starring: Ben Stiller (Evan), Vince Vaughn (Bob), Jonah Hill (Franklin), Richard Ayoade (Jamarcus), Rosemarie DeWitt (Abby), Will Forte (Sgt. Bressman), Mel Rodriguez (Chucho), Doug Jones (Hero Alien), Erin Moriarty (Chelsea), Nicholas Braun (Jason), R. Lee Ermey (Manfred), Joe Nunez (Antonio Guzman), Liz Cackowski (Carla), Johnny Pemberton (Skater Kid), Sharon Gee (Mrs. Kim).
Directed by: Akiva Schaffer.
Features: Deleted Scenes; Gag Reel; Alien Invasions and You; Casting the Alien; Theatrical Trailer; Sneak Peek; Jonah Alternate Takes; Watchmakers; Digital Copy.

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Doctor Who: Series Seven, Part One (2012)

Doctor Who: Series Seven, Part One
BBC

Season 7 isn't over yet, but we're already getting the nondeluxe home video release of the first five episodes--a convenient anthology of the final arcs of Rory and Amy, though mainly useful in the end for holiday gift-giving (add it to the seasons 5 and 6 sets and you can stage your own Eleven/Amy/Rory marathons leading up to the Christmas special!).
Formats: Blu-Ray and DVD.
The story: Join the Doctor, his companions Amy and Rory (aka the Ponds) and numerous friends on their latest escapades through space and time where they puzzle an unexpected invasion of Earth, save a spaceship full of dinosaurs, don Stetsons in a Wild West adventure and are even kidnapped by the Doctor's oldest foe. The explosive series concludes with Amy and Rory's heart-breaking farewell - a race against time through the streets of Manhattan. Will the Doctor really lose the Ponds forever? There's only one way to find out. Episodes: "Asylum of the Daleks," "Dinosaurs on a Spaceship," "A Town Called Mercy," "The Power of Three," and "The Angels Take Manhattan."
Starring: Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, Arthur Darvill, Claire Skinner, Holly Earl, Alexander Armstrong, Maurice Cole, Bill Bailey.
Directed by: Nick Hurran, Douglas Mackinnon, Saul Metzstein.
Features: The Science of Doctor Who; Doctor Who at Comic Con; Bonus Scenes.

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Lost Girl: The Complete Second Season (2011-2012)

Lost Girl: The Complete Second Season
Funimation

Lost Girl season 1 garnered attention for its scrappy, sexy pursuit of a different, under-the-radar take on the seamy underworld of metahumans, but it's the brio of season 2 that really got folks to sit up and take notice.
Formats: Blu-Ray and DVD.
The story: Bo is back, and she's ready for action! As always, her mortal bestie Kenzi is along for the ride, eager to add a human touch to Bo's supernatural existence. The new season gets off to a bang as the Succubus finds herself navigating a web of seduction between Dyson, Lauren, and a dark fae she just can't resist. As if Bo's hands weren't already full, There is a new Ash in town and he has his own agenda for Bo. Throw in some shocking revelations by Trick, a new boy toy for Kenzi, a Fae-devouring beast with fiery wings, and it's enough to make any girl head straight for the spa. But Bo's not just any girl. She's a Succubus to be reckoned with, and juggling the romantic entanglements of a modern woman while saving the Fae world from fire and brimstone is what she does best.
Starring: Anna Silk, Kris Holden-Ried, Ksenia Solo, Richard Howland, Zoie Palmer.
Directed by: Robert Lieberman and others.
Features: Uncut footage not seen on Syfy; Cast interviews; Making of Lost Girl featurettes and bloopers; English subtitles for the Hearing Impaired; Specialty packaging on the first print-run.

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Children Who Chase Lost Voices (2012)

Children Who Chase Lost Voices
Sentai Filmworks

Not everyone is aware that Studio Ghibli does not have a monopoly on 2D animation that riffs on Japanese folktakes with a level of visual imagination that makes the final product more a feast than a film.
AKA: Hoshi o Ou Kodomo.
Formats: Blu-Ray and DVD.
The story: When she hears a strange song from a crystal radio, Asuna tunes into more than just a magical stream of music. Soon, she is transported to a mysterious world where mythical beasts roam and brave warriors fight for their lives. Agartha is a land of breathtaking beauty and unimaginable danger-a place where, it is believed, even the dead can be brought back to life. But at what cost? Children Who Chase Lost Voices is a spellbinding new work from Japanese visionary Makoto Shinkai, who amazed audiences the world over with Voices of A Distant Star and 5 Centimeters per Second. Now, with Children, Shinkai affirms his place as one of animation's most original voices.
Starring: Kazuhiko Inoue.
Directed by: Makoto Shinkai.
Features: Audio Commentary with Cast and Crew; Interviews with the Staff and Cast (1080i; 55:40); A Brief Interview with Makoto Shinkai; The Making of Children Who Chase Lost Voices (1080i; 45:18); The Works of Makoto Shinkai (SD: 7:26); Japanese Promotional Video (HD; 5:04); Japanese Teasers (1080i; 2:26).

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Buck Rogers in the 25th Century: Season Two (1981)

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century: Season Two
Universal Studios Home Entertainment

Like Deep Space 9 many years later, Buck Rogers sought to correct the perceived limitations of a static setting--in this case, New Chicago of the future--first with wrenches thrown in the works like alternate universes and strange behavior, then, as here in season 2, by half-junking the premise and putting the heroes on a spaceship. Only 11 episodes were made in the new format, which provides Buck with a sidekick, Hawk, you can usually actually tolerate (i.e., he doesn't constantly bust out with "bidibidibidi").
Formats: DVD (4 discs).
The story: Jump aboard the starship Searcher with Captain William "Buck" Rogers and Colonel Wilma Deering as they risk their lives to find lost colonies of earthlings scattered across the galaxy after a massive nuclear disaster. Rogers and Deering encounter strange alien worlds, thrilling mysteries and untold danger in this action-packed iconic intergalactic series.
Starring: Gil Gerard, Erin Gray, Thom Christopher, Jay Garner, Wilfrid Hyde-White.
Directed by: Vincent McEveety and others.
Features: None listed.

  • Trailer.
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Pixar Short Films Collection: Volume 2 (2012)

Pixar Short Films Collection: Volume 2
Pixar

Volume 1 of this collection is essential viewing for all Pixar fans; this one may be more in the "nice to have" kind of category.
Formats: Blu-Ray and DVD.
The story: Disney and Pixar present an incredible new collection of 12 short films, featuring multiple Academy Award(R) nominees (Best Short Film, Animated: "Presto," 2008; "Day & Night," 2010; "La Luna," 2011) and a host of family favorites. Join the celebration of imagination with this must-own collection, packed with unforgettable animation, fantastic stories and captivating characters. Plus, enjoy all-new extras that share how Pixar's storied talent got their start -- including student films from acclaimed directors John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Pete Docter. Films included: BURN•E; Dug's Special Mission; George & AJ; Air Mater; Time Travel Mater; Your Friend The Rat; Partly Cloudy; Presto; Day & Night; Hawaiian Vacation; Small Fry; La Luna; plus 7 student films.
Directed by: Angus MacLane, Ronnie del Carmen, Josh Cooley, Rob Gibbs, Jim Capobianco, Peter Sohn, Doug Sweetland, Teddy Newton, Gary Rydstrom, Enrico Casarosa.
Features: Audio Commentaries; Trailers.

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Snowmageddon (2011)

Snowmageddon
Starz / Anchor Bay

Been hankering to catch up with fan-favorite supernumeraries from Dead Like Me, Kyle XY, and Medium, all in the same Syfy movie junkfest from the folks who brought you Stonehenge Apocalypse and Mongolian Death Worm? Here you go.
Formats: Blu-Ray and DVD.
The story: It's Christmas Eve in Normal, Alaska, and not a flake of snow has fallen yet. But when mysterious earthquakes, explosive fires, ice meteors and underground spikes suddenly strike the quaint mountain village, the local sheriff, his helicopter pilot wife and their two kids must figure out why nature hates the holidays. Could a supernatural snow globe be triggering this season of destruction, or will a massive volcano roast Earth's chestnuts forever?
Starring: Laura Harris, Michael Hogan, Magda Apanowicz, David Cubitt, Jeffrey Ballard, Michele Cummins, Lorne Cardinal.
Directed by: Sheldon Wilson.
Features: None listed.

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