We’re beginning another new series this week. Moving forward, watch for our picks for new Blu-Rays and DVDs every week. Our first week kicks off with some of the summer’s biggest hits, including BlacKkKlansman and The Incredibles 2. However, if you want collectors editions and some box sets, there are plenty of new features to check out!
Pick of the Week
RT Score: 95%
Metacritic Score: 83
One of the very best films of the year comes along at exactly the right moment. It is not an accident it will release on the day voting closes. Whether or not your party wins, the racial issues in America are a systemic problem that continues decades later. Bringing a film like BlacKkKlansman, the latest Spike Lee joint, into your home on this day carries significance. A fun and socially conscious film like this one is a must-see, and should also bring you to the church of John David Washington. He’s a star and delight.
The Incredibles 2
RT Score: 94%
Metacritic Score: 80
Whenever Pixar rolls out a new feature, it is always one to watch for. The latest work from the studio brings together everyone’s favorite superhero family for a series of adventures. Ms. Incredible (Holly Hunter) takes center stage this time around while Mr. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson) takes care of the kids. With Brad Bird directing, we have some of the coolest action work of the year. A huge box office and some stellar animation make this one the frontrunner for Best Animated Feature.
Throwback Movie of the Week:
Rotten Tomatoes: 83%
Not sure what is going on with that MetaScore, but The Thing is simply a transfixing, beautiful horror film. One of the hidden gems of the 1980s, the John Carpenter film has become known for its outlandishly good special effects. Some of the prosthetics used here are insane, especially when it comes to the creature creation. Yet The Thing is about much more, including a distrust of our neighbors and the fear of the unknown that lives inside of each of us. This is probably Kurt Russell‘s greatest performance, and this one simply sings. The Thing is one of the greatest horror films ever made, without question.
Big Box Sets:
The Harry Potter Collector’s Edition Steelbook Box Set (4K)
In what might be the deepest week we ever reward this prize, Harry Potter clearly was going to take the top spot. The story of a young boy learning he is a wizard launched one of the great franchises in film history. There’s a lot to be said about the achievement alone, but looking over the cast reminds you that an all-star list of the greatest British, Irish, Welsh, and Scottish actors in the world were involved in this film franchise. Alan Rickman, Ralph Fiennes, Helena Bonham Carter, Maggie Smith, Richard Harris, Gary Oldman, David Thewlis, Brendan Gleeson, Domhnall Gleeson, Kenneth Branaugh, Emma Thompson, Imelda Staunton, and Jim Broadbent are just some of the royalty involved. The breakout stars Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and Tom Felton would grace the screen. A simply astonishing achievement, the pop culture world would never be the same.
TV of the Week
Stranger Things Season 2
Rotten Tomatoes: 94%
A great blockbuster followup to the first season, Stranger Things cemented its legacy in Season 2. The show has become one of the great action and adventure shows ever to grace streaming platforms. That might make it an odd choice for TV show of the week, but this one is a gimme. A pop culture behemoth, both in its own right and how it calls back to the 1980s, the show deserves to be owned by the diehard fans.
The Shape of Water (4K)
Rotten Tomatoes: 92%
Rotten Tomatoes: 71%
Rotten Tomatoes: 83%
All three of these movies have some special place in my heart. Obviously, Aaron and I were rather high on The Shape of Water last year, which ended up winning Best Picture. Again, I reiterate there is far more to this movie than the fish/human relationship. Instead, talk about how it was the first film centered on a woman to win Best picture in over a decade. It showcases a killer cast and an amazing crew. Guillermo Del Toro is a master storyteller and this one helps to cement his legacy.
Christopher Robin is another fun Disney film to check out. The revival of the story of a bear and his owner. Winnie the Pooh is one of the great characters in the history of animation, and Jim Cummings is simply amazing. It’s a fun film, a morose film, and a bit predictable. Yet watching these characters come to life is worth it 100% of the time.
Finally, Grindhouse brings B-movies back to the zeitgeist. Both of the films, including Planet Terror and Death Proof, gorge on B-movie zaniness. Planet Terror is directed by Robert Rodriguez and features all the gore you would ever need. It’s a fun zombie action flick, and also the most ridiculous thing you’ve ever seen. Meanwhile, Death Proof delivers another career-defining role for Kurt Russell and might be the most underrated film of Quentin Tarantino’s career. However, despite some strong high points parts of the film really struggle. However, being able to watch both films back-to-back makes for a fun time.
Other Films to Check Out!
The Planet of the Apes Trilogy (2011-2017)
The Rocky Heavyweight Collection
Superman: The Movie (4K)
Air Force One (4K)
Wreck-It Ralph (4K)
The Transformers Box Set (4K)
Train to Busan