Netflix Streaming Report: A.C.O.D., The Truman Show, Just Friends, and More

Just Friends Netflix and Chill

The Netflix Streaming Report for May 5, 2016 includes new titles such as A.C.O.D., There Will Be Blood, Just Friends, The Truman Show, and more Continue reading

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Now Available to Own: Rogue Nation, The Scorch Trials, Ted 2, and More

Brace your bank accounts, it’s time to see what’s Now Available to Own for the week of December 15, 2015. Every Tuesday we run down new movie and television releases that you can enjoy in the comfort of your own home, as well as some slick deals that can help save you some coin. New on shelves this week are Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials, Fantastic Four, Ted 2, and more.

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation Plane Stunt

Source: Huffington Post

Movies on Blu-ray

Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (Christopher McQuarrie) Rated PG-13 [131 min] – Ethan and team take on their most impossible mission yet, eradicating the Syndicate – an International rogue organization as highly skilled as they are, committed to destroying the IMF. Starring Tom Cruise, Rebecca Ferguson, Jeremy Renner, and Simon Pegg

Having not seen M:I 2-4, Rogue Nation is surprisingly well contained. I can’t say I was lost at all while watching the film and the screenplay does a fine job at filling in details drawn out over the course of the franchise. The only thing I am missing out on is the built camaraderie between characters. The action is wonderful, the energy is high, and the cast is engaging. The Mission: Impossible franchise has always done a good job at raising the bar from what I have seen, and the special features on this disc are quite thorough. And with how real the stunts are and how much effort is put into making this Rogue Nation feel authentic, the special features are definitely worth your time.

Special features include:

  • Audio Commentary by Tom Cruise and director/screenwriter Christopher McQuarrie
  • Lighting the Fuse
  • Cruise Control
  • Heroes
  • Cruising Altitude
  • Mission: Immersible
  • Sand Theft Auto
  • The Missions Continue

Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (Wes Ball) Rated PG-13 [131 min] – After having escaped the Maze, the Gladers now face a new set of challenges on the open roads of a desolate landscape filled with unimaginable obstacles. Starring Dylan O’Brien, Kaya Scodelario, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Giancarlo Esposito, Ki Hong Lee, Dexter Darden, Jacob Lofland, Rosa Salazar, Aidan Gillen, and Patricia Clarkson

As much as I am intrigued by this franchise, The Scorch Trials gets a little too bogged down in the drama and the mystery of W.C.K.D. The cast is still pretty strong and there’s a lot of decent action sequences. But overall, this second chapter didn’t create a spark to make this young adult dystopia stand out from the rest.

Special features include:

  • Janson’s Report
  • Secrets of the Scorch
  • Visual Effects
  • Visual Effects Reel
  • Deleted and Extended Scenes with Audio Commentary from Wes Ball, T.S. Nowlin, Joe Hartwick Jr. and Dan Zimmerman
  • Gag Reel
  • Galleries
  • Theatrical Trailers

Ted 2 (Seth MacFarlane) Rated R [115 min] – Newlywed couple Ted and Tami-Lynn want to have a baby, but in order to qualify to be a parent, Ted will have to prove he’s a person in a court of law. Starring Mark Wahlberg, Seth MacFarlane, Amanda Seyfried, Jessica Barth, Giovanni Ribisi, Patrick Warburton, Sam J. Jones, and Morgan Freeman [Watch the Trailer]

I had hoped that Ted 2 would expand upon the heartfelt relationship between Ted and Johnny, and although there are some glimpses of it, Seth MacFarlane favored frat boy humor over character development in this sequel. The movie is funny, but in the end it’s hardly memorable compared to the first film.

Special features include:

  • A Giant Opening Dance Number (Blu-ray exclusive)
  • Deleted Scenes (Blu-ray exclusive)
  • Gag Reel (Blu-ray exclusive)
  • Cameo Buddies (Blu-ray exclusive)
  • Thunder Buddies 4 Lyfe
  • Roadtripping
  • Creating Comic-Con
  • Feature Commentary with Seth MacFarlane, Alec Sulkin & Wellesley Wild and Jessica Barth

Fantastic Four (Josh Trank) Rated PG-13 [100 min] – Four young outsiders teleport to an alternate and dangerous universe which alters their physical form in shocking ways. The four must learn to harness their new abilities and work together to save Earth from a former friend turned enemy. Starring Miles Teller, Kate Mara, Michael B. Jordan, and Jamie Bell

What a waste of effort and money on everyone’s part. There wasn’t even a press release or an announcement sending notification that this title has become available. Shows how much importance was placed on trying to salvage this bomb.

Special features include:

  • Powering Up: Superpowers of the Fantastic Four
  • The Quantum Gates
  • Planet Zero
  • Concept Art
  • And More!
Extant Season 2

Source: Tumblr

TV Show Releases

Extant Season 2 (Mickey Fisher) Rated TV-14 [42 min] – An astronaut struggles to learn how she became pregnant while on a 13-month-long solo space mission. StarringHalle Berry, Pierce Gagnon, and Grace Gummer

For as much heart as Halley Berry puts into Extant the sadder it is to see this series flounder. Despite ditching many of the first season faults, Season 2 picks up many of its own, dissolving would could be captivating sci-fi. The special features are bountiful on this Blu-ray set, and they do cover a lot of ground. So if you are a fan, it’s worth noting you won’t be disappointed with the extras.

Special features include:

  • Extant: A Look at Season 2
  • Chemistry: Molly & JD
  • The Carnival of the Mind
  • A Tour of the Sets
  • Gag Reel
  • Two Humanichs: Ethan & Lucy
  • The Season Finale
  • Deleted Scenes

CSI: The Finale (Anthony E. Zuiker) Rated TV-14 [60 min] – An elite team of police forensic evidence investigation experts work their cases in Las Vegas. Starring Laurence Fishburne, Marg Helgenberger, and George Eads

It’s shows exactly like CSI that make me hate procedurals, which is unfortunate because there are some good ones out there like Sherlock. And the fact that the series finale is wrapped up in a nice DVD all by itself worries me. CSI is such trashy escapism masked by a facade of pretentious dialogue, robotic characters, and nonsense narratives that it boggles the mind as to why it was allotted so much time on air.

Special features include:

  • CSI: Crime Scene Investigation – Case Closed
  • CSI: SIGN OFFS – The Finale Cast Says Goodbye
  • Deleted and Extended Scenes
  • Audio Commentary by Serie Creator Anthony E. Zuiker

Additional Releases this Week

  • He Named Me Malala (DVD Only)
  • The Muppet Christmas Carol
  • Dick Tracy
  • Marco Polo: Season One
  • Teen Wolf: Season 5 Part 1

Blu-Ray Deals and Steals

  • The Flash (Season 1) – $19.99
  • The Hayao Miyazaki Collection – $184.99
  • The Man from UNCLE – $14.99
  • Edward Scissorhands – $7.99
  • Gotham (Season 1) – $19.99
  • Whiplash – $9.99
  • Only Lovers Left Alive – $9.99
  • Mad Men: The Complete Series – $109.99
  • Kingsman: The Secret Service – $9.99
  • Spy – $9.99
  • Young Adult – $5
  • Wild Tales – $11.99
  • Peak Blinders (Season 1) – $14.99
  • American Sniper – $13.98
  • The Interview – $6.99
  • What If – $9.99

All prices from Amazon.com. Best Buy, Frys, and Target all price match online prices.

What will you be taking home this week? Tell us in the comments section below!


new movie tv video game releases on dvd and-blu-ray

All plot synopses come courtesy of IMDb.com

Box Office Battlefield: Fantastic Four, The Gift, Ricki and the Flash, and Shaun the Sheep

Every week, movie studios select candidates to enter the glorious battlefield for your hard-earned dollars. The weekend warriors of August 7, 2015 includes Fantastic Four, The Gift, Ricki and the Flash, and Shaun the Sheep. Box Office Battlefield is here to help you decide which movie(s) will take priority over the others and determine who will be victorious. Should you see ’em, skip ’em, or rent ’em? Find out below!

Last weekend, Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation took care of business and easily claimed the top seat at the box office. However, Tom Cruise has four big challengers vying to overthrow the superstar this weekend. Can a superhero reboot, Meryl Streep, an animated movie about sheep, or a creepy Jason Bateman thriller come home with the win? Excelsior! This is the Box Office Battlefield:

fantastic-four-2015-title-movie-logo

Fantastic Four (Josh Trank) Rated PG-13 [100 min] – Four young outsiders teleport to an alternate and dangerous universe which alters their physical form in shocking ways. The four must learn to harness their new abilities and work together to save Earth from a former friend turned enemy. Starring Miles Teller, Kate Mara, Michael B. Jordan, and Jamie Bell

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 9% • Audience – 29%

My review:

After Avengers: Age of Ultron and Ant-Man, I didn’t think I had superhero fatigue, and after seeing the abysmal Fantastic Four reboot, I still don’t believe I do. What the Fantastic Four movie represents is the complete lack of imagination superhero films are capable of. I went in with the lowest expectations possible, and plot holes aside, I was bored to tears. There is nothing interesting or unique that this new iteration of the Fantastic Four is trying ti say or do. The camaraderie amongst the team is lackluster and uninspired; this is suppose to be a family and yet they hardly talk to one another. Doctor Doom, above all, is the flimsiest aspect of the story and one of the worst villains we’ve had in a superhero flick. This movie fails on all levels. SKIP IT!

The Gift 2015 Movie Title Logo

The Gift (Joel Edgerton) Rated R [108 min] – A young married couple’s lives are thrown into a harrowing tailspin when an acquaintance from the husband’s past brings mysterious gifts and a horrifying secret to light after more than 20 years. Starring Jason Bateman, Rebecca Hall, Joel Edgerton, and Allison Tolman

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 92% • Audience – 85%

My take:

From the trailers, The Gift looked like a terrible straight to home video release. Nothing about the performances stood out, and the plot seemed so one-note that I felt nothing could surprise me. Boy was I wrong. Joel Edgerton has put together a fine little film that is playfully thrilling and keeps you thinking long after you’ve left the theater. All of the performances are pretty standard, but the story is so fresh that it’s unlike anything I’ve seen in a long time. The Gift will definitely be one of the most surprising movies of the year for me. MATINEE IT!

Ricki and the Flash Movie Title Logo

Ricki and the Flash (Jonathan Demme) Rated PG-13 [101 min] – A musician who gave up everything for her dream of rock-and-roll stardom returns home, looking to make things right with her family. Starring Meryl Streep, Kevin Kline, Mamie Gummer, and Sebastian Stan

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 59% • Audience – 57%

Their reviews:

“Streep’s latest mom role, as Ricki Rendazzo in Ricki and the Flash, has a light, Mamma Mia! vibe, but it still hits all those hot buttons.” – Susanna Schrobsdorff (TIME Magazine)

“Diablo Cody’s dispiriting screenplay is all about everyone coming to love Ricki, faults and all, and that is just not convincingly done.” – Kenneth Turan (Los Angeles Times)

My take:

Most of the review headlines I’ve read haven’t been too favorable to Ricki and the Flash, and the trailer paints every beat of the film to the point that you can see the movie without actually seeing it. So I decided to skip this one for the sake of time, and I figured Meryl Streep would obviously be Meryl Streeping. From what I understand, this movie is pretty vanilla and the emotional impact the film is trying to make is on the nose and pandering. WAIT FOR IT ON NETFLIX!

Shaun the Sheep Movie Movie Title Logo

Shaun the Sheep Movie (Mark Burton and Richard Starzak) Rated PG [85 min] – When Shaun decides to take the day off and have some fun, he gets a little more action than he bargained for. A mix up with the Farmer, a caravan and a very steep hill lead them all to the Big City and it’s up to Shaun and the flock to return everyone safely to the green grass of home. Starring Justin Fletcher, John Sparkes, Omid Djalili, and Richard Webber

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 99% • Audience – 82%

Their reviews:

“Plenty of bigger, more grown-up movies could learn a thing or two from its humanity.” – Bilge Ebiri (New York Magazine)

“Grownups will enjoy every delicious irony and twisted sight gag that floats over kids’ heads. If the brats don’t get the shout-outs to The Night of the Hunter, The Silence of the Lambs and Scorsese’s Cape Fear, let them suck on it.” – Peter Travers (Rolling Stone)

My take:

I’ve never been a fan of the Wallace and Gromit films. Not that I hate them or anything, but the storytelling and humor has never appealed to me. Apparently Shaun the Sheep is pretty solid family fun. It looks a little more energetic and mainstream than its predecessors. MATINEE IT!

The Diary of a Teenage Girl Movie Title Logo

The Diary of a Teenage Girl (Marielle Heller) [Limited] Rated R [102 min] – A teen artist living in 1970s San Francisco enters into an affair with her mother’s boyfriend. Starring Bel Powley, Alexander Skarsgård, Kristen Wiig, and Christopher Meloni

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 94% • Audience – 85%

Their reviews:

“The novel is life-specific, but what makes Minnie – on the page and now on the screen – greater than any one girl is how she tells her own story in her own soaringly alive voice.” – Manohla Dargis (New York Times)

“For a movie about such fraught topics, sometimes rendered with admirable and non-squeamish explicitness, Diary often eschews melodrama; when the plot turns, it does so abruptly, providing a credible simulation of real-life tumult.” – Jesse Hassenger (AV Club)

My take:

This book adaptation hasn’t been available to me yet, but I really want to see it. I haven’t seen the trailer nor do I know anything about The Diary of a Teenage Girl. All I know is that it’s getting good reviews and that I’m told it’s required 2015 viewing. SEE IT!

Cop Car 2015 Movie Title Logo

Cop Car (Jon Watts) [Limited] Rated R [86 min] – A small town sheriff sets out to find the two kids who have taken his car on a joy ride. Starring Kevin Bacon, James Freedson-Jackson, Hays Wellford, and Shea Whigham

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 76% • Audience – 80%

Their reviews:

“Cop Car is a movie that prioritizes a child’s-eye view to merciless effect, even as it deals with corruption, drugs, and murder.” – Alison Willmore (BuzzFeed)

“Scenes that should take 30 seconds take three minutes. Writer-director Jon Watts does successfully channel childhood, though: He’s like a kid short of ideas who triple-spaces his book report.” – Kyle Smith (New York Post)

My take:

If you want to see how competent the director of the next Spider-Man movie will be, check out Cop Car. This is a Sundance darling that has received fairly positive reviews. The trailer has pretty wild tones that starts off light and comedic and gets dark very quickly. It reminds me of Mud starring Matthew McConnaughey in a way thanks to its two kid leads and indie sheen. Looks like Cop Car offers a good watch. MATINEE IT!

Dragon Ball Z Resurrection F Movie Title Logo

Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ (Tadayoshi Yamamuro) [Limited] Not Rated [93 min] – One peaceful day on Earth, two remnants of Frieza’s army named Sorbet and Tagoma arrive searching for the Dragon Balls with the aim of reviving Frieza. They succeed, and Frieza subsequently seeks revenge on the Saiyans. Starring Masako Nozawa, Ryô Horikawa, Hiromi Tsuru, and Masaharu Satô

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 100% • Audience – 86%

Their reviews:

“DBZ: Resurrection ‘F’ is a fast-paced film with tons of action and great animation, but lacks any meaningful punch.” – Shawn Saris (IGN News)

“This slam-bang action-adventure will have “Dragon Ball” fans of all ages cheering with delight.” – Charles Solomon (Los Angeles Times)

My take:

Dragon Ball Z is obviously as niche as it gets. There’s definitely a formula that the DBZ producers stick to that has continued to work well into the present. Bringing back an old big bad is not unfamiliar territory, but it seems fresh enough to enjoy based on the reviews. MATINEE IT!

Dark Places 2015 Movie Title Logo

Dark Places (Gilles Paquet-Brenner) [Limited] Rated R [113 min] – Libby Day was only seven years old when her family was brutally murdered in their rural Kansas farmhouse. Twenty-five years later, she agrees to revisit the crime and uncovers the wrenching truths that led up to that tragic night. Starring Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult, Christina Hendricks, and Chloë Grace Moretz

Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics – 26% • Audience – 40%

Their reviews:

“A lazy, flat and poorly written thriller that fails at grabbing viewers by the throat or by the heart.” – Rob Hunter (Film School Rejects)

“Dark Places just becomes an overstuffed, low-simmer potboiler with too many improbable detours and overly convenient twists.” – Chris Nashawaty (Entertainment Weekly)

My take:

From watching the trailer, Dark Places looks like a terrible straight to home video story with an A-list cast. I think the concept comes off way too cheesy and heavy handed. I think these actors accidentally signed up for the wrong film when they heard this was adapted from the author of Gone Girl. WAIT FOR IT ON NETFLIX!

For some, superhero fatigue may have already set in, but I think folks will be curious about how well 20th Century Fox has rebooted Marvel’s first family. It has terrible reviews, but that hasn’t stopped moviegoers before when it comes to tent pole summer films i.e. Transformers. Ricki and the Flash is in less than 2,000 theaters and Meryl Streep alone cannot gain wide audiences outside adult demographics. While on the other side of the coin, Shaun the Sheep may get families and kids to venture into the movies, but teens may find it too childish to check out. And then there’s The Gift, a thriller that in my mind was marketed poorly but is gaining rave reviews. It’s odd roles for all teh cast involved and should make for an interesting turnout. So as it stands, I believe the victor for this weekend will be:

Winner: Fantastic Four

Movie synopses courtesy of IMDb.com and Tomatometer Scores from Rotten Tomatoes