September 24, 2012

It’s another great week for Blu-ray as Joss Whedon’s Marvel Phase One capper The Avengers hits home video, 22 Bond films get a stellar collector’s set release with Bond 50, and Part 1 of the animated adaptation of Batman: The Dark Knight Returns hits stores.  Briefly:

Hit the jump for all the details.

The American President [Blu-ray]


Screenwriter Aaron Sorkin wrote a massive first draft for the 1995 romantic drama The American President, and the bulk of the material that was cut out became the basis for his masterful TV series The West Wing.  The Rob Reiner-directed drama now comes to Blu-ray, which is welcome news given that the previous DVD transfer left much to be desired.  The disc is bare bones when it comes to special features, however, as the only bonus material included is the film’s theatrical trailer.

Marvel’s The Avengers (Four-Disc Combo: Blu-ray 3D/Blu-ray/DVD + Digital Copy + Digital Music Download)

Marvel’s The Avengers (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo in Blu-ray Packaging)


This all-star superhero pic is a must-have for fans of good movies in general, and The Avengers comes in a couple of different home video releases.  Fans can either grab the Blu-ray/DVD combo pack or tack on an extra $5 for the four-disc combo which includes the 3D Blu-ray, 2D Blu-ray, DVD, digital copy, and digital music download.

The special features are identical on both releases, featuring a must-listen audio commentary from writer/director Joss Whedon, a “second screen” viewing experience that provides character details and such on an iPad, iPhone, or laptop while the film plays, Marvel’s short film Item 47, a gag reel, eight deleted/extended scenes (including the alternate opening and ending), two rather short featurettes, and the Soundgarden music video “Live to Rise.”

Click here to catch up on all of our extensive coverage of the film and Blu-ray.

Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1 [Blu-ray]


Frank Miller’s classic limited series Batman: The Dark Knight Returns has been adapted for this two-part animated feature film.  We’ve already seen a few promising clips hit the web in anticipation of the film’s direct-to-DVD release, and this disc includes a number of bonus features in addition to Part 1 of the film adaptation.  Included on the disc is a featurette looking at Carrie’s role as a female Robin in the story, a documentary delving into the life and career of Batman creator Bob Kane, a 7-minute sneak peek at Part 2, the episodes “Two-Face, Parts 1 & 2” from the now-classic Batman: The Animated Series, a digital comic for The Dark Knight Returns, and a sneak peek at Superman/Batman: Public Enemies.  In short, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1 is a pretty swell home video release.

Bond 50: The Complete 22 Film Collection [Blu-ray]


In anticipation of the release of Skyfall this November, all 22 previous films in the long-running James Bond franchise have been given the ultimate collector’s set release.  The box includes every Bond film from Dr. No to Quantum of Solace on Blu-ray, with 130 hours of bonus features including some new and exclusive content.  The new supplements include the Skyfall videoblogs and two new featurettes: The World of Bond and Being Bond, which has insights from Sean Connery, George Lazenby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig regarding the titular character.

Dave [Blu-ray]


Another presidential romantic drama is getting the Blu-ray treatment with an HD transfer for director Ivan Reitman’s Dave.  The 1993 film was written by Hunger Games director Gary Ross and features two wonderfully charismatic performances from Kevin Kline and Sigourney Weaver.  Like The American President, the special features are incredibly slim with only a featurette and the film’s theatrical trailer on the disc.

The American President [Blu-ray]


Though we could technically call this the first season of Ryan Murphy’s American Horror Story, the show was revealed the be an anthology series at season’s end so this Blu-ray release could also be considered a self-contained miniseries.  The special features on the Blu-ray include pilot commentary by Murphy, behind-the-scenes featurettes, and a haunted house documentary called “The Murder House presendeted by Eternal Darkness Tours of Hollywood.”

Finally, click here for all of the new releases on Amazon this week.

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