Headsup: Teenage Drama

Disclaimer: Warner Bros. Home Entertainment requests we note that it provided a free copy of the first DVD featured below. The opinions I share are my own.
 

As if hormones and problem skin weren't enough, the teens in two new releases have quite a lot on their plates:

 

Teen Titans Blu-rayAdapted from the adored 1984 DC comic series, Teen Titans: The Judas Contract rejoins the Teen Titans five years after their rescue of Princess Starfire (Kari Wahlgren) from her evil sister.  Now they have their sights set on a new target as Brother Blood (Gregg Henry) and his terrorist group seek to steal the team's powers with a specially created machine.  With the addition of mysterious new team member Terra (Christina Ricci) and a cat-and-mouse chase with the mercenary Deathstroke (Miguel Ferrer), the Teen Titans are rarely afforded a dull moment.  This film is sequel to Justice League vs Teen Titans and is #28 in the DC Universe Animated Original Movies series which began back in 2007 with Superman: Doomsday.  It also features Miguel Ferrer's final film role (as Slade Wilson / Deathstroke) before he passed away from throat cancer in January.  Like most of the others in the DC Universe Animated Original Movies line, the film is rated PG-13 (for language, sexual situations, and violence), so be aware before showing or gifting to little ones.
 
Teen Titans: The Judas Contract is being released direct to home media and is now available in DVD, Blu-ray, and digital formats.  The Blu-ray [...]

By |April 18th, 2017|Headsup|0 Comments

Headsup: Let's Have Drinks!

Out now from Paramount Home Media are two titles that show just how funny things can get when people are in their cups…
 
Office Christmas Party Blu-rayFirst we have Office Christmas Party, the story of a soon-to-close Chicago branch of a tech company which decides to try to land a life-saving client by means of a huge Christmas party that turns out to be a bacchanalian mess.  The film stars Jennifer Anniston as Scrooge-like CEO Carol Vanstone and T.J. Miller as her man-of-the-people brother Clay along with an ensemble cast, including Jason Bateman, Olivia Munn, Kate McKinnon, Rob Corddry, Jillian Bell, Vanessa Bayer, Sam Richardson, Fortune Feistier, and Courtney B. Vance.  The film grossed $114 million worldwide and, while it received mixed reviews from critics, was a welcome piece of lighthearted escapism for many fans.  The film is now out on both Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD, although if you want access to the unrated version (which includes footage not seen in theaters), you'll have to go with the Blu-ray option.  Bear in mind, the unrated version is only five minutes longer than the theatrical one. Also exclusive to the Blu-ray Combo Pack are some additional bonus features, including commentary on the theatrical version by directors Josh Gordon and Will Speck (who you may recall also joined forces on Blades of Glory), "Throwing an Office Christmas Party" (where the cast and crew discuss real Christmas parties and making the movie), a special named "Outtakes" which is really more like multiple takes of some of the actors improving alternate lines, and five deleted scenes.  The DVD has the theatrical version of the film only.

For those who want to grab it now and not wait for next holiday season, you can rent the HD digital version of the theatrical release on Amazon for $5.99 or purchase it on both Amazon and iTunes for $14.99.  You can also purchase the unrated version digitally on Amazon for $14.99 (for some reason there's no rental option on that one.)  Another oddity is that (at least at the time of this writing) on Amazon the pricing for the DVD and the Blu-ray are the same at $17.99.  (No idea why on that one, but I would say if you like the extras and the option to have both the theatrical and unrated versions for no extra coin, go ahead and jump on the Blu-ray while you can.)

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By |April 4th, 2017|Headsup|0 Comments

Headsup: Historical Fiction

 

Fans of historical fiction will be excited about the release of two new titles now out on Blu-ray and DVD:

 

Fences Blu-rayFirst we have the critically-acclaimed film Fences, based on August Wilson's 1985 stageplay of the same name.  The play won both a Tony Award and a Pulitzer Prize in 1987, and thirty years later the film (adapted for the screen largely by Wilson himself) has continued the winning streak, garnering Oscar, Golden Globe, BAFTA, and SAG awards (among multiple others), most of which are due to the masterful leading performances of Viola Davis and Denzel Washington (Washington also directed the film.)  The story (which was the sixth installment of Wilson's "Pittsburgh Cycle") centers around former African American baseball player Troy Maxson as he struggles to redefine his own identity and to make a living for himself and his loved ones in the tumultuous and challenging world of 1950s Pittsburgh.

The film is now out on Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD, and digital HD.  The Blu-ray option not only features the film in both disc and digital form, but also over 30 minutes of bonus material, including "Expanding the Audience: From Stage to Screen" (comments from Denzel Washington, the play's 2010 Broadway director Kenny Leon, and others about transitioning the story from play to film formats), "The Company of Fences" (which looks at the cast in general, many of whom also appeared in the recent Broadway production), and "Playing the Part: Rose Maxson" (where Viola Davis discusses bringing her role to life), along with "Building Fences: Denzel Washington" and "August Wilson's Hill District", two featurettes about the joys and challenges of the film's production process. Denzel Washington fans will also appreciate  the "bonus bonus" that comes with the Blu-ray option -- for a limited time, purchasing this set also gets you a free digital copy of The Manchurian Candidate (be aware that the code does expire in June, so if you go that route make sure you don't forget to take advantage of it within that window).  Digital HD options are available for both rental and purchase on Amazon and iTunes ($4.99 / $9.99 and $5.99 / $14.99 respectively).  If you want it on disc form (keep in mind the DVD doesn't include those bonus features), you can grab both on Amazon: the Blu-ray is currently priced at $19.99 and the DVD is $17.99

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By |March 20th, 2017|Headsup|0 Comments

Headsup: Stories From Japan

Out this month are three releases of stories from the Land of the Rising Sun:

Sailor Moon Crystal Set 2 Blu-rayFirst we have Sailor Moon Crystal Set 2 (you can see our coverage of Sailor Moon Crystal Set 1 here), which follows the continuing adventures of Usagi as she now must face new foes in the form of the Spectre Sisters  and a mysterious girl with pink hair as they threaten to take the Silver Crystal.  This set contains episodes 15-26 of the rebooted series (the Black Moon Arc) and is available in standard DVD, standard Blu-ray combo, and Limited Edition Blu-ray combo packs.  Both Blu-ray options also have some bonus features, including a digital art gallery, clean opening and ending songs, and an interview with Momoiro Clover Z, the Japanese girls' group that sings the theme songs for the series.  The Limited Edition set also boasts some additional extras, including an exclusive chipboard box, a 96-page art booklet with episode summaries, and six full-color art cards.  Fans should also be aware that  RightStufAnime.com (yes, only one f in the URL) also offered an exclusive Sailor Moon sun catcher with purchase but they were so popular that they've already sold out, so if you want that option, keep your eyes peeled on eBay and the like.  On Amazon you can snag the DVD set there for $27.99, the Blu-ray Combo set for $53.98, and the Limited Edition Blu-ray set for $62.19.

 

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By |March 14th, 2017|Anime, Headsup|1 Comment

Headsup: Make 'em Laugh

 

If you're a fan of the hilarious world of Carol Burnett et al., you're in luck with two new spring releases from Time Life:

Best Tim Conway DVD
First we have The Carol Burnett Show: The Best of Tim Conway, which includes four episodes (ranging from 1969 to 1978) from the Emmy-winning series highlighting the comedic exploits of timeless funny man Tim Conway.  Conway began as a guest star on The Carol Burnett Show in 1967 and became a regular member of the cast in 1975, remaining until the series' final season in 1978.  In addition to the five Emmy Awards he won for his work on the show, Conway brought to life some of its most iconic characters and sketches.  This collection's episodes (three of which have never been previously released) feature his much-loved characters "Oldest Man" and "Mr. Tudball," in addition to lesser-known (but equally amusing) appearances as an untraditional fairytale prince, a man with canine identity confusion, and the Lone Ranger.  Fans will also be pleased to see that Episode 513 (December 1, 1971) includes the famous Dentist sketch featuring Tim Conway facing off against Harvey Korman as the latter struggles to maintain self-control in the face of Conway's targeted and epic goofiness.  No special features on this one (which is a shame, since Time Life is pretty great at those), but fans will appreciate the content nonetheless.  The set is scheduled for release on April 4 and is available for pre-order on DVD on Amazon [...]

By |March 14th, 2017|Headsup|0 Comments

Headsup: Women-- Can't Live With Them, Can't Tell if They're International Double Agents...

Disclaimer: Warner Bros. Home Entertainment requests we note that it provided a free copy of the first DVD featured below. The opinions I share are my own.

Ah, the 90s...the days of the Clinton White House, double-reverse front pleated pants, Fuller House Season 1 DVDand of course, Full House on ABC. The story of widower Danny Tanner raising his three young daughters as part of a mixed family unit, it was ever a fan favorite, launching the careers of the Olsen Twins and showing America that John Stamos is so outrageously handsome he can even look good in a mullet. Last February series creator Jeff Franklin debuted its sequel, Fuller House, on Netflix, which this past Christmas was approved for a third season (now 18 episodes) to be released later this year. This sequel series follows the family's eldest daughter D.J. Tanner-Fuller (now a widow herself) as she navigates raising her three sons with the help of friends and family. In addition to some fresh faces, the cast of the original series (minus the Olsen twins doubling as Michelle) returns, including original "dads" Bob Saget, Dave Coulier, and John Stamos (also one of the show's producers). While the reboot has received mixed reviews from critics, it has already received two Teen Choice Awards (one for Choice Comedy TV Show and one to Candace Cameron Bure as Choice Actress in a TV Comedy) and a People's Choice Award (Favorite Premium Comedy Series). Now out on [...]

By |March 9th, 2017|Headsup|0 Comments

Your Monday Morning Mental Sorbet: God Forbid a Clementine

James Acaster

Good morning. Welcome to Monday and another week where at any moment the Matrix we're living inside of could blue screen and kill us all. Worrying about that, though, is pointless. Like stressing over the inevitable heat death of the universe. Or the inevitable return of bell bottoms.

Instead, let us take a few minutes to enjoy the madness of English comedian James Acaster. He is a very sick man, and we respect that.

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By |March 6th, 2017|Mental Sorbet|0 Comments

Your Weekend Justice #247: We Never Thought This Would Happen to Us, But…

Smokey and the Bandit Snowman Truck

It's Weekend Justice: the Internet's #1 audio trainwreck...and holy shit, we've worked our way out of the 2015 recording archive and we careen into 2016. Amusingly, at the time of this recording, we still have no idea what a shitshow the year will be. Come join us and remember a kinder, more naive universe.

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By |February 21st, 2017|Podcasts, Weekend Justice|0 Comments

Headsup: Animation

 
Out now are two new releases from the animation world to help us see the lighter side of life:

 

Powerpuff Girls Tiara Trouble DVDFirst we have The Powerpuff Girls: Tiara Trouble.  After over a decade since they left the air in 2005, Buttercup, Bubbles, and Blossom returned to Cartoon Network in April of 2016 to continue to fight crime in Townsville, coming up against villainous foes such as Mojo Jojo, Fuzzy Lumpkins, Princess Morbucks, Manboy, the Gangreen Gang, and others.  The reboot follows the successful run of the Powerpuff Girls series (fun tidbit: it was originally titled Whoopass Stew!), which garnered several award nominations and wins in addition to a feature film, a series of video games, and a merchandise line.  The new series (starring Natalie Palamides as Buttercup, Kristen Li as Bubbles, and Amanda Leighton as Blossom) has itself received an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Short Form Animated Program and has enjoyed respectable viewership numbers, reaching over 19 million viewers its first four weeks on the air.  New and old fans of the Powerpuff heroine trio will be happy to know that the first season of the reimagined series is now out on DVD, including all twelve episodes plus a bonus sticker pack (available on Amazon for $9.96).  The series is also available on both iTunes and Amazon video for $2.99 per episode or $19.99 for the complete season (be aware that on both it's simply titled The Powerpuff Girls: Vol. 1 even though it's the new Tiara [...]

By |February 20th, 2017|Animation, Headsup|0 Comments

Headsup: Making Connections

Out this month are two films whose characters suddenly find themselves in circumstances that change their worlds, prompting them to form otherwise-unlikely bonds with each other:

 

King New Orleans
First we have The King of New Orleans, Brian R. Friedman's independent film that follows New Orleans cabbie Larry Shirt (David Jensen, Ocean's Eleven, The Mist, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) as he drives everyone from across the social spectrum around the Big Easy.  One of his fares is possibly-expelled Harvard student Bobby Cohn (Richard Brien, Nashville), and the two form a friendship later tested by the epic challenges of Hurricane Katrina.  The film won multiple awards at the Napa Valley Film Festival, the Santa Fe Independent Film Festival, and the New Orleans Film Festival, and it is the feature-length debut of Allen Frederic (Lee Daniels' The Butler, People), who co-directed the film with creative team Coodie & Chike (Benji, Good Morning).  The King of New Orleans will be out on digital platforms (including Amazon and iTunes) on February 21st (timed to tie in with Mardis Gras on the 28th) but is already available on DVD on Amazon for $14.99.   No special features on this one, which is sad because it seems like such a heart-centered project for the creators (and I'm sure they have some crazy behind-the-scenes stories they could tell since it was filmed on location in New Orleans).  If you simply love independent film and/or New Orleans, though, this may be worth checking out.

 

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By |February 17th, 2017|Headsup|0 Comments