New on DVD & Blu-ray: August 26-Sept. 1

Posted on August 25, 2014
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THIS WEEK’S THEATRICAL RELEASES:

“Belle,” a melodrama about Dido Elizabeth Belle (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), an 18th century English woman of mixed race who finds herself caught between two worlds when she falls in love with a young idealist lawyer (Sam Reid) who aspires to create positive change. Co-stars Tom Wilkinson, Emily Watson, Miranda Richardson, Penelope Wilton and Matthew Goode. From Fox.

“Blended”, a very silly, empty-headed Adam Sandler comedy about single parents Lauren (Drew Barrymore) and Jim (Sandler) who have a bad blind date and agree on only one thing: they never want to see each other again … until by coincidence they each sign up separately for a family vacation with their kids and get stuck sharing a suite at a luxurious African safari resort for a week. From Warner.

THIS WEEK’S HIGHLIGHTS:

There’s two fabulous releases this week from The criterion Collection:
“All That Jazz” (1979): The preternaturally gifted director and choreographer Bob Fosse turned the camera on his own life for this madly imaginative, self-excoriating musical masterpiece. Roy Scheider gives the performance of his career as Joe Gideon, whose exhausting work schedule — mounting a Broadway production by day and editing his latest movie at night — and photo for All That Jazzroutine of amphetamines, booze, and sex are putting his health at serious risk. Fosse burrows into Gideon’s (and his own) mind, rendering his interior world as phantasmagoric spectacle. Assembled with visionary editing that makes dance come alive on-screen as never before, and overflowing with sublime footwork by the likes of Ben Vereen, Leland Palmer, and the awesomely leggy Ann Reinking, “All That Jazz” pushes the musical genre to personal depths and virtuosic aesthetic heights. In a Blu-ray/DVD Dual Format Edition with a new 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed 3.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray. Criterion will also release this week the Blu-ray debut of “Vengeance Is Mine” (1979): A thief, a murderer, and a charming lady-killer, Iwao Enokizu (Ken Ogata) is on the run from the police. Director Shohei Imamura turns this fact-based story — about the 78-day killing spree of a remorseless man from a devoutly Catholic family — into a cold, perverse, and at times diabolically funny examination of the primitive co-existing with the modern. More than just a true-crime tale, “Vengeance Is Mine” bares humanity’s snarling id. Restored high-definition digital transfer, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack.

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