April 1, 2008 -
March 31, 2008 - Another new review covers Juno, the film that recently won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. The PG-13-rated dramedy comes to Blu-ray and two different DVD editions in the middle of April. Our article covers a screener that houses all the two-disc Special Edition's bonus features. Ellen Page stars as the sarcastic, eponymous teenager who becomes pregnant and looks to give her baby over to an affluent adoptive couple (Jennifer Garner, Jason Bateman). There's plenty of reason this quirky independent film has found unusual critical and mainstream success with numerous awards and a record-setting gross. Check out our review...
In our latest DVD review, Aaron Wallace takes a look at one of this week's biggest releases: Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. Tim Burton proves to be the perfect match for the dark, ironic Stephen Sondheim musical. Inspired direction, a potent performance by Johnny Depp, and solid renditions of Sondheim's fine songs all add up to a "thrilling, funny, and exceedingly clever" film which ranks among "Burton's very best." The review covers DreamWorks' 2-Disc Special Edition which provides over two hours of exclusive featurettes and some snazzy packaging. Read the full review.
March 27, 2008 - Our newest interview comes via online junket with Jon Turteltaub. Turteltaub has directed 8 major films over the past two decades, all at Disney branches. His career of surprise hits began with the sequel-spawning 3 Ninjas and continued with bobsledding comedy Cool Runnings, Sandra Bullock's While You Were Sleeping, Phenomenon with John Travolta, and The Kid starring Bruce Willis. Turteltaub's biggest and most recent successes have come in the helm of the blockbuster adventure National Treasure and its sequel National Treasure: Book of Secrets. With Secrets' DVD release approaching, Turteltaub took out an hour to discuss with UltimateDisney.com and other global online outlets the changing family film, the many elements of making a big budget film, a third National Treasure installment, his upcoming live-action Sorcerer's Apprentice remake, producer Jerry Bruckheimer, and much more. You definitely won't want to miss the full interview, which may be the first to contain both "grilled cheese sandwich" and "huge pipe of crack" in the same sentence.
March 26, 2008 - Our latest DVD review takes an early look at There Will Be Blood, the fifth feature film from writer-director Paul Thomas Anderson. The turn-of-the-century drama follows an oil man and his young adopted son to small-town California. That synopsis can't do justice to the supremely crafted character study which soars on the Oscar-winning performance of star Daniel Day-Lewis. Paramount's 2-Disc Collector's Edition scores points for inspired packaging, but its light supply of supplements clocks in at under an hour and says little. Both the movie and our review warrant a look. Read on...
Christopher Disher reviews Stargate: The Ark of Truth, the recently-released first of two direct-to-video MGM movies that follow the all-time longest-running American science fiction TV show. He provides a series fan's point of view, which you'll need to have to appreciate this inconclusive, plot-recycling feature. The DVD serves up a 9-minute prelude to prime those not caught up on the latter seasons' Ori plot line, an audio commentary, a making-of featurette, and a Comic-Con panel discussion. Read on...
March 24, 2008 - Winding down our patch of Disney press releases is the announcement for The Sword in the Stone: 45th Anniversary Edition, which, aside from an open ending, clearly puts the June 17th DVD in the company of the studio's lightweight single-disc animated reissues.
March 22, 2008 - We've posted two more press releases, which announce the two May 27th DVDs that are sure to have fans of Disney Channel heartthrob Jason Dolley salivating: Minutemen, the original movie about time-traveling high schoolers, and Cory in the House: Newt & Improved Edition, the umpteenth 4-episode compilation of one of the cable network's low-budget sitcoms.
Meanwhile, our Disney DVD Schedule has been given a complete update to reflect the year's considerable chunk of announced and expected titles plus those on the horizon for 2009.
March 21, 2008 - We've got a slew of Disney DVD announcements coming your way this holiday weekend. Available now are The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning, which serves up a very thorough overview of this summer's direct-to-video prequel but stays mum on bonus features, "The Muppet Show": Season 3, putting Jim Henson's beloved variety series on the fast track with exciting bonuses new and old, National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets, which details the bonus features of the blockbuster sequel's two-disc Gold Collector's Edition DVD and concurrent Blu-ray release, and "Home Improvement": The Complete Eighth Season, which brings the popular '90s Tim Allen sitcom to close with an extra disc and more pomp.
March 19, 2008 - We have a new review of Nancy Drew, the family-friendly feature film mystery starring Emma Roberts. Rather than the recent DVD, Warner sent us a screener of the Drew's Clues special edition On-Demand version with pop-up fun facts. Read on...
Cover art for "Home Improvement": The Complete Eighth and Final Season, The Jungle Book 2: Special Edition, and "The Suite Life of Zack & Cody": Lip Synchin' in the Rain has been added to our Upcoming DVD Art page, along with Amazon preorder links.
March 18, 2008 - For a complete look at today's new DVDs, Blu-rays, and HD DVDs, check out our DVDizzy.com Release Schedule for March 18th.
Aaron Wallace takes a look Into the Wild for our latest DVD review. The Sean Penn-directed drama retells the true story of a college graduate who left responsibility and civilization behind to enjoy the freedom and beauty of living off the land. His journey is effectively rendered into a haunting film worth experiencing. Paramount's 2-Disc Collector's Edition goes light on the supplements, but its trio of offerings are all absent from the concurrent single-disc release. Read the full review.
Disney's Enchanted comes to DVD and Blu-ray today. If you haven't already done so, be sure to read our review. If you've read the review and seen the movie, then you'll probably be interested in a set of 13 images that compare moments from the film to their inspirations in classic Disney animated features. Check them out here. Registered Disney aficionados are welcome to boast about how they already spotted them all.
Winners of the 101 Dalmatians: Platinum Edition DVD and the special Anita/Cruella prints signed by Lisa and Alice Davis have been added to our contest page. Thanks to all who entered!
March 17, 2008 - In our newest interview, Aaron Wallace speaks with Andreas Deja, who has served as supervising animator for some of Disney's most famous contemporary villains, including Gaston from Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin's Jafar, and Scar from The Lion King. They talk about 101 Dalmatians, Deja's animating principles, and the present and future of Disney animation. Read the full article.
Visitors to this site have probably sent more e-mail inquiring about the 1989 made-for-TV movie Polly and its 1990 sequel Polly: Comin' Home than anything else in Disney's catalog. Musical adaptations of Pollyanna starring Keshia Knight Pulliam as Polly and her "Cosby Show" mom Phylicia Rashad as Aunt Polly, both were recently released to DVD. But you can't buy them in stores and online you can expect to pay in the neighborhood of $45-$75 (Polly, Comin' Home). Why? Because the two made their way to DVD in the same way that most live-action Disney fare has in the past few years, as Disney Movie Club exclusives. Existing members can buy the titles for $19.95 each plus shipping. Non-members can now enroll in the club with a 3 movies for $1.99 each deal . Explore our full list of Disney Movie Club Exclusives (with links to buy from Amazon or see the exclusives at Disney Movie Club while you consider joining.
March 9, 2008 - We've just granted a much-needed update to our Upcoming Disney Movies page, with new capsule previews of 2008 releases Beverly Hills Chihuahua and Roy Disney's Morning Light; 2009 releases Race to Witch Mountain, Old Dogs, The Hannah Montana Movie, and G-Force; and Tim Burton's 3-D Alice in Wonderland and Frankenweenie. In addition, all other movie previews have been revised to reflect production updates, release date changes, and new information. Check it all out at Upcoming Disney Movies.
Recent Disney DVD and CD Reviews:
• Enchanted - Successful fantasy-comedy leans heavily on Disney's fairy tale tradition, with 10 minutes of 2D animation, songs from '90s Renaissance composers Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz, and various allusions and cameos. Princess-to-be Giselle (Amy Adams) is transported to present-day New York City, where she is taken in by a divorce lawyer (Patrick Dempsey) and his young daughter. The witty hit's DVD supplies terrific picture and sound, but impresses less with a meager extras menu.
• 101 Dalmatians: Platinum Edition - Though much more down to earth than its Silver Age brethren, this 1961 canine comedy still stands as one of Disney's best animated features with gentle humor, an appealing story, and a wretched villain. The 2-disc set merits much praise for picture and sound. Though the bonus slate is light, some fine inclusions are found, including informative fact tracks, a host of trailers from over the years, a half-hour of deleted songs and demos, and 3 solid featurettes. [Related Article: California Press Junket Report; Related Interviews: Lisa Davis (voice/model for Anita), Alice Davis (costume designer/wife of animator Marc Davis)]
• "My Friends Tigger & Pooh": Friendly Tails - Disney's latest Hundred Acre Wood TV series puts the gang in computer animation alongside Darby, a girl who leads efforts to solve mysteries. The disc serves up 3 episodes, including an unaired one, and a three-stage set-top game.
Recent Non-Disney DVD Reviews:
• In the Valley of Elah - Tommy Lee Jones stars as a Vietnam vet joining police and military in a search for answers to his Iraq soldier son's disappearance. Fellow Oscar winners Charlize Theron and Susan Sarandon co-star in this, Paul Haggis' directorial follow-up to his 2005 Best Picture Oscar winner Crash. Warner's DVD supplies a deleted subplot and a solid 43-minute documentary which interviews cast members and the family whose real story inspired the film.
• Things We Lost in the Fire - Danish director Susanne Bier's first English language film stars Halle Berry as a strong-willed woman who reaches out to a troubled friend (Benicio Del Toro) after losing her husband (David Duchovny). DreamWorks' DVD includes a 20-minute featurette, 7 deleted scenes, and the trailer.
• Bee Movie - DreamWorks' latest computer-animated comedy welcomes Jerry Seinfeld back to the entertainment scene as writer, producer, and lead voice. After graduating college, a talking honey bee who has trouble picking a job befriends a New York City woman and decides to sue humans for selling honey. Though a clear product of the studio known for pop culture references, celebrity voices, and adult humor, Bee is witty and fun. The film's Very Jerry 2-Disc Edition delivers some exciting, exclusive things including deleted scenes, alternate endings, an audio commentary, and TV Juniors interstitials.
• Dan in Real Life - In this PG-13 dramedy, Steve Carell stars as a widower, advice columnist, and father of three who begins falling for a woman (Juliette Binoche) he soon learns is dating his brother (Dane Cook). The suppressed love triangle breeds frustration and tension at a big family gathering in New England. Touchstone's DVD includes an audio commentary by writer-director Peter Hedges, 20 minutes of deleted scenes, bloopers, and two featurettes.
• No Country for Old Men - Joel and Ethan Coen's Best Picture and other Oscar winner provides three perspectives on one chase in 1980 West Texas. After a simple welder (Josh Brolin) picks up a big bundle of cash from a drug deal gone wrong, a ruthless assassin (Oscar winner Javier Bardem) and a calloused sheriff (Tommy Lee Jones) both take interest in his moves. Miramax's DVD supplies only a trio of featurettes, the best of which takes a thorough 24-minute look at various facets of production.
• In the Shadow of the Moon - Documentary revisits the wonder of the manned Apollo lunar missions with intimate new interviews of ten astronauts and a wide variety of archival NASA video. THINKfilm's DVD includes a commentary, an hour of deleted interview footage, 2 featurettes, and the trailer.
• Mrs. Doubtfire: Behind-the-Seams Edition - This 1993 comedy blockbuster still heartily entertains today with its sharp story of a divorced father (Robin Williams) who goes to extreme lengths to spend time with his three kids. After a year's delay, this 2-disc set reaches stores with new 16x9 enhancement for the feature and over a half-hour of deleted scenes. Though losing one major bonus, it adds many including production-time featurettes, a new retrospective with Williams and director Chris Columbus, make-up test footage, alternate improvised takes, three photo galleries, an Easter Egg, and a Horton Hears a Who! movie ticket.
• The Darjeeling Limited - Offbeat writer-director Wes Anderson (The Royal Tenenbaums) treads familiar ground in this quirky dramedy about a trio of estranged brothers who unite for a spiritual train ride across India.
• The Easter Bunny is Comin' to Town: Deluxe Edition - One of Rankin/Bass's less famous stop-motion works, this 1977 TV special follows Santa Claus is Comin' to Town in design, complete with Fred Astaire as singer/storyteller, to explain how the holiday's traditions came to be.
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