Non-comprehensive highlights of the week in Blu-ray releases…
Jurassic Park 3D – Holy balls, that was fast! I literally just saw this in the theater last week. Holds up very well as a movie – after hearing Spielberg talk a couple of Comic-Cons ago about going through the making of E.T. with so many child actors and realizing by the end that he wanted kids himself, it’s clearer than ever that Alan Grant’s arc is somewhat autobiographical. And the great depth of field many scenes already had is enhanced nicely by 3D. A new nine-minute documentary focuses on the post-conversion process, but unless you have a 3D TV it’s not really worth the purchase.
Thale – If you ever come upon a secret hidden laboratory in which lies a beautiful woman named “Eve,” always assume it’s an ironic biblical metaphor and she’s looking to kill you and start a new species. Especially if she has a tail. This Norwegian horror movie flounders a bit with some awkward CG toward the end, but the plot manages some nice twists and the good old ultraviolence at the end.
Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes – Or, as I like to call it, “Heh-Heh! The Legendary Christopher Lambert, Lord of the Raspy Laugh.” Before he was Highlander and Rayden, the freaky Frenchman was Tarzan, in a movie from Chariots of Fire director Hugh Hudson that attempted to return the character to his more literary roots. They still took quite a few liberties with Burroughs’ original novel, but it’s a step above “Me Tarzan, you Jane,” or anything scored to Phil Collins songs. Rather hilariously, Andie MacDowell’s Jane was overdubbed by Glenn Close when the former’s Southern accent was deemed too broad.
Gangster Squad – You may recall I liked this movie quite a bit; history buffs could find it infuriating, but as long as you come to it not expecting reality – and hungry for an over-the-top violent and at times inappropriately comedic treatment of gangster violence, you’ll dig it. It is truly from the director of Zombieland and 30 Minutes or Less, with the same gleefully morbid outlook. The Blu-ray contains numerous featurettes and a documentary on the real Mickey Cohen, played in the movie by Sean Penn.
And that’s really about it in terms of my picks for this week; it’s not a very loaded release day. As always, feel free to add yours.