blu-ray DVD & Blu-ray

UK DVD & Blu-ray Releases: Monday 8th February 2010



Adventureland (Walt Disney): Director Greg Mottola followed up Superbad (2007) with this marvellous coming-of-age comedy set in the summer of 1987 about a recent college grad (Jesse Eisenberg) who takes a nowhere job at a local amusement park, where he falls in love and learns a few life lessons.

Superbly made and acted it features some terrific performances from Eisenberg, Kristen Stewart, Ryan Reynolds (seriously) and Bill Hader. Although it didn’t make a huge amount of money at cinemas, it was one of the best films of last year and will almost certainly become a cult favourite in the future.

Plus, it has a memorable use of Falco’s ‘Amadeus‘ and the line “status obsessed witch” is one of the killer movie phrases in recent memory.

Extras include:

  • Deleted Scenes
  • Just My Life: The Making Of Adventureland
  • Feature Commentary — With Writer/Director Greg Mottola And Actor Jesse Eisenberg
  • A Satiric “How To” On Inflicting Unexpected Pain

* Buy Adventureland on DVD or Blu-ray from Amazon UK *

Mystic River (Warner): A release on Blu-ray for Clint Eastwood‘s 2003 adaptation of the Dennis Lehane novel, which is set in Boston and deals with three childhood friends (Sean Penn, Tim Robbins and Kevin Bacon) who are reunited after one of their daughters gets killed.

A powerful and well acted drama, it features fine supporting performances from Laura Linney, Marcia Gay Harden and Laurence Fishburne. Tastefully shot (by Tom Stern) and edited (by Joel Cox), it bears all the hallmarks of Eastwood’s classy dramas over the last decade and won Sean Penn and Tim Robbins Oscars for their performances.

Gary Tooze of DVD Beaver has posted some screen shots of the Blu-ray and is impressed with the transfer and the overall package, saying:

“…contrast and colors leap ahead. …this looks very good and occasionally even impressive with some desirable depth. Dependant on your system – the superiority is moderate to heavy over the previous SD-DVDs”

This includes all the extras from the R1 DVD release that were never included on the UK R2 DVD.

  • Commentary by Tim Robbins and Kevin Bacon
  • Dennis Lehane Tours the Boston Neighborhood Setting of His Novel in Mystic River: Beneath the Surface
  • Featurette Mystic River: From Page to Screen
  • The Charlie Rose Show Interviews with Clint Eastwood, Tim Robbins and Kevin Bacon
  • Theatrical Trailers

* Buy Mystic River on Blu-ray from Amazon UK *


Paper Heart (Anchor Bay): A new film starring Charlyne Yi and Michael Cera as fictionalized versions of themselves in a “hybrid documentary” about love. Directed by Nicholas Jasenovec, it also features Yi travelling across America asking various people about their experiences of love.

Extras include:

  • Paper Heart Uncut
  • “The Making of Paper Heart”
  • Live musical performances by Charlyne Yi
  • “Heaven” music video by Charlyne Yi and Michael Cera
  • Love interviews with the comedians
  • Deleted scenes
  • Trailer

* Buy Paper Heart on DVD or Blu-ray from Amazon UK *


Blue Dragon Complete Series 1 (Manga) [Buy it on DVD]
Couples Retreat (Universal) [Buy it on DVD | Buy it on Blu-ray]
Death Note Relight: Visions of a God (Manga) [Buy it on DVD]
I Love You, Beth Cooper (Fox) [Buy it on DVD]
In the Electric Mist (High Fliers) [Buy it on DVD | Buy it on Blu-ray]
Kamikaze Girls (Special Edition) (Third Window Films) [Buy it on DVD | Buy it on Blu-ray]
Lala Pipo (Third Window Films) [Buy it on DVD]
Long Weekend (2008) (Showbox) [Buy it on DVD]
The Time Traveler’s Wife (EIV) [Buy it on DVD | Buy it on Blu-ray]
The Ugly Truth (Sony) [Buy it on DVD | Buy it on Blu-ray]
The Unit Season 4 (Fox) [Buy it on DVD]

The Best DVD and Blu-ray releases of 2009
UK cinema releases for Friday 5th February including Invictus and Astro Boy

Cinema Festivals Interviews

Interview: Nicholas Jasenovec and Charlyne Yi on Paper Heart

Charlyne Yi and Nicholas Jasenovec

Paper Heart is a new film starring Charlyne Yi and Michael Cera as fictionalized versions of themselves in a “hybrid documentary” about love.

Directed by Nicholas Jasenovec, it also features Yi travelling across America asking various people about their experiences of love.

I spoke with Charlyne and Nicholas recently when the film screened at the London film festival last month and you can listen to the interview here:


You can download this interview as a podcast via iTunes by clicking here

Paper Heart is out at selected UK cinemas now

> Download the interview as an MP3 file
> Official site for Paper Heart
> Charlyne Yi and Nicholas Jasenovec at the IMDb
> Follow the movie on Twitter (@PaperHeartMovie)
> Find out more about Paper Heart at Wikipedia


UK Cinema Releases: Friday 6th November 2009

UK Cinema Releases 06-11-09



A Christmas Carol (Walt Disney): An animated retelling of the Charles Dickens novel about a Victorian-era miser (Jim Carrey) taken on a journey of self-redemption, courtesy of several mysterious Christmas apparitions. Written and directed by Robert Zemeckis, it stars Carrey in a variety of roles, including Ebenezer Scrooge and the three ghosts who haunt him.

It was filmed using the performance capture techniques Zemeckis previously used in The Polar Express (2004) and Beowulf (2007). Disney will be expecting healthy box office after a big marketing push and audience familiarity with the story. [BFI IMAX, Empire Leicester Sq., Trocadero Picc Circus & Nationwide / PG]

The Men Who Stare At Goats (Momentum Pictures): Loosely adapted from Jon Ronson’s non-fiction book about a secret Army unit founded in 1979 called the ‘First Earth Battalion’ who conducted paranormal experiments, which included staring at goats in order to kill them.

The film uses a fictional framing narrative of an Ann Arbor journalist (Ewan McGregor) who hears about these strange practices when he covers the Iraq war in 2003 and encounters a former member of the unit (George Clooney).

An excellent supporting cast includes Jeff Bridges, Kevin Spacey and Stephen Lang. Although director Grant Heslov doesn’t always get the mix right between comedy and drama, there are enough funny set pieces here to chew on. Read my full thoughts on the film here.

Momentum will be hoping the starry cast will boost ticket sales but the oddness of the story and heavy competition might dent its grosses. [Coronet Notting Hill, Screen On The Green, Vue West End & Nationwide / 12A]

Bright Star (Warner Bros./Pathe): Director Jane Campion returns with this lush period drama based on the three-year romance between 19th century poet John Keats (Ben Wishaw) and Fanny Brawne (Abbie Cornish), which was cut short by Keats’ untimely death at age 25.

It has screened to some acclaim on the festival circuit since premièring at Cannes back in May and many are tipping it for Oscar recognition. Critical buzz and word of mouth amongst discerning audiences could help it achieve decent art house business, with multiplex crossover in some areas. [Nationwide / PG]

Jennifer’s Body (20th Century Fox): A comedy horror about a newly possessed cheerleader (Megan Fox) who turns into a killer who specializes in offing her male classmates, much to the dismay of her best friend (Amanda Seyfried).

A massive creative misfire all-round, despite the talents of screenwriter Diablo Cody (Juno) and director Karyn Kusama (Girlfight). Fox will be hoping to snare gullible teens but audiences will be disappointed when they see what a bad film it is. [Nationwide / 15]

The Fourth Kind (Entertainment): ‘Fact’ based thriller involving an ongoing unsolved mystery in Alaska, where one town has seen an extraordinary number of unexplained disappearances during the past 40 years and there are accusations of a federal cover up [Nationwide / 18]



UK Cinema Limited Releases 06-11-09

Paper Heart (Anchor Bay UK): Charlyne Yi embarks on a quest across America to make a documentary about love.

Directed by Nicholas Jasenovec, it is a drama/documentary hybrid starring Charlyne Yi and Michael Cera as themselves. Sort of. [Odeon Panton Street & Key Cities / PG]

1 Day (Vertigo Films): The first ever British hip hop musical about a hustler named Flash set amongst young rappers in Birmingham. It should be noted that it is directed by Penny Woolcock who has made two of the worst films of all time (The Principles of Lust and Mischief Night). [Nationwide / 15]

Henri-Georges Clouzot’s Inferno (Park Circus): A part documentary and part reconstruction of the 1964 film Henri-Georges Clouzot never made. [Cine Lumiere, ICA Cinema & Key Cities / 15]

Welcome (Cinefile): Drama about a Kurdish boy from Iraq who sets off on a journey across Europe. [Curzon Renoir & selected Key Cities/ 15]

> UK cinema releases for November 2009
> DVD & Blu-ray picks for this week including Wallace and Gromit: The Complete Collection, It’s A Wonderful Life, The Proposition and The Wizard of Oz (W/C Monday 2nd November 2009)