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US Blu-ray and DVD Releases: Anyone But You, The Ring, Child’s Play, Carrie, Icons Unearthed: Star Wars and Rick & Morty

Anyone But You

After a jam-packed slate of releases last week, things come back down to earth a bit this week, but we still have a new theatrical hit, some catalog 4K releases, and the usual odds and ends. Check out the new discs below!

Anyone But You

The Movie: I went and saw Anyone But You in theaters on opening weekend and enjoyed it quite a bit. But I was disappointed to see that it only opened at a little over $6 million dollars. However, the film got some good word of mouth and didn’t have a lot of competition in the way of other rom-coms, so it stuck around in theaters and legged its way to an almost $90 million gross at the U.S. box office, making it solidly a hit! The film itself is pretty standard rom-com fare. Glen Powell and Sydney Sweeney play a couple who have a romantic encounter that they both think could lead to real love. But a miscommunication ends up with them moving on from each other after one night. When they end up at the same wedding party, they decide to fake being together to keep their overbearing parents and exes at bay. And… where it goes from there isn’t too hard to figure out. The film has a good amount of laughs and I found it quite fun. It’s not a rom-com masterpiece, but I doubt anyone watching won’t have a good time with it. Glen Powell is absolutely a movie star in the making, and Sydney Sweeney is.., well, she’s certainly got the physical attributes that audiences appreciate, even if I’m not quite sold on her acting talents yet. That said, she’s perfectly fine in this role, and it’s not a huge heavy lift acting-wise, anyway.

The Special Features: There are two featurettes, a blooper reel, and a collection of deleted scenes, plus a couple of other little goodies.

The Wrap-UpAnyone But You is a fun rom-com that aims to be raunchy and manages to deftly walk the line between being sexy enough to be more than PG-13, but not so over the top that it’s a hard R. I think it found a sweet spot in the middle and I enjoyed the result quite a bit!

The Ring Collection (4K Ultra HD) 

The Movie: I’ve always considered my experience with The Ring to be an interesting one. I saw The Ring in theaters and found it to be quite literally the scariest movie I had ever seen. My wife and I both enjoyed it, as a matter of fact, but we were also both completely terrified by it. And many people I talked to at the time felt the same way. Fast forward several months, after the movie came out on home video, and the tenor of those conversations changed. And what I found out was that people who had seen the film in theaters found it to be incredibly scary, and those who first watched it on home video found it much less so. Now, obviously, there’s a difference in seeing a movie on the big screen, but this is one of the most clear divides I’ve ever come across. (The other being the original The Blair Witch Project, which had a similar effect.) I still consider The Ring a completely terrifying movie, and I had to force myself to rewatch it to review this new 3-movie 4K Ultra HD collection from Shout Factory, which collects The RingThe Ring Two, and Rings. The sequels are, sadly, a series of diminishing returns, but that first film remains a horror masterpiece as far as I’m concerned. This new six-disc box set gives you each of the three films on both 4K Ultra HD as well as Blu-ray, and it comes packed with bonus features.

The 4K Audio/VideoThe Ring films look and sounds terrific in 4K, replicating the theatrical experience. Color saturation is deep and rich when appropriate, but the first film especially also had a very desaturated look in large portions (on purpose) and that is replicated here. You also get impeccably sharp imagery, and deep, rich black levels. The print, of course, is devoid of any blemishes or debris. The surround soundtrack has a lot to work with in terms of creating atmosphere and it doesn’t waste any opportunities to fill your living room with dread-inducing sounds and tones. There’s also a nice low end bass channel that gives many of the scenes an effective rumble that you’ll feel in your chest. It’s a strong technical effort.

The Special Features: These discs come with a nice array of extra features, with each movie getting its own dedicated bonus materials. The Ring includes a short film, deleted scenes, two featurettes, multiple cast and crew interviews, and the trailer. The Ring Two gives us an audio commentary, five making-of featurettes, and deleted scenes. Finally, Rings incudes three featurettes and deleted scenes.

The Wrap-Up: The franchise as a whole may be uneven, but the first film is unbeatable. The second one is solid, too, and it does make a nice follow-up to the first, even if it can’t match the sheer terror. This fantastic box set is a must-have for fans of The Ring series.

Child’s Play (4K Ultra HD)

The Movie: This new 4K Ultra HD release is the debut of the 2019 remake of Child’s Play in the premium 4K format, not a re-release of the original 1988 film (which is already available on 4K.) Was there a huge clamour for this remake to get a 4K release? I don’t know, and I have my suspicions, but Shout Factory knows what they’re doing and I suspect there are enough Chucky fans out there to want every movie in the franchise on 4K. The 2019 Child’s Play stars Gabriel Bateman as Andy, Aubrey Plaza’s 13-year-old hearing-impaired son. She brings home a misfunctioning “Buddi” doll for Andy. It’s a high-tech doll that can speak spontaneously, learn, and do other cool technology-based tricks. Until, you know, it comes to life and starts murdering people. Hey, this is a Child’s Play movie, you know what to expect! (Super mad bonus points for having Mark Hamill voice Chucky, though!) Now, the movie didn’t do terribly well at the box office, I think largely because horror remakes are always a little questionable, especially with a franchise as well-established as Chucky’s. Still, that said, this is a perfectly fine film, even bordering on pretty good. It’s updated and more modern, but the script has some fun moments and the technology upgrade brings it into more modern times. It’s not as good as the classic original Chucky films (especially the first four), but it’s definitely worth a watch.

The 4K Audio/VideoChild’s Play looks and sounds very good in the premium format. The color saturation is quite vibrant, image clarity is sharp, and shadow delineation is very strong, helpful in a film that takes features endless nighttime scenes and dark moments. The surround soundtrack isn’t the most immersive ever, but it does a great job of maximizing what it has to work with and extending the sounds of mayhem into your living room.

The Special Features: This two-disc set includes an audio commentary with the film’s director, a making-of feature, an additional featurette, a photo gallery, and a few additional bonus materials.

The Wrap-UpChild’s Play probably didn’t need a remake, but the filmmakers did a pretty good job with it overall. If you like movie, this new 4K Collector’s Edition release offers a ton of bang for your buck and will be a welcome addition to your Chucky collection!

Rick & Morty: The Complete Seventh Season

The Show: Well, here we go again. The only TV show ever to be responsible for both a McDonald’s special sauce and then an angry fan reaction to said McDonald’s special sauce is back on home video. Unfortunately, even after seven seasons, Rick & Morty remains just not my thing. I know people love it, and the show has a very strong fan following, but I just don’t dig it. Every time a new season comes out, I give it a try, and every time, I’m just completely unmoved by it. Sure, there are one or two funny jokes in each episode, but I find the characters unlikable and the humor largely ridiculous — and not in a good way. Maybe I’m just getting old; who knows? But none of that matters, because people love this show and it’s as popular as ever, regardless of what I think about it. This leads us to the new Blu-ray collection that features the seventh season in its entirety.

The Special Features: There are a dozen brief featurettes that run 2-3 minutes each, plus an 8-minute making-of feature.

The Wrap-Up: I’ve heard Rick & Morty compared to everything from Back to the Future to Doctor Who to Futurama to Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and I personally don’t think it’s half as good as any of those things. Unfortunately, it’s just not my thing. But I know people really love Rick & Morty and the show’s fan base is fanatical, so this will be sure to be another home video hit for the studio.

Carrie (4K Ultra HD)

The Movie: Shout Factory brings another semi-questionable horror remake to 4K Ultra HD this week… and honestly, I wish I had some different things to say about it than I did the Child’s Play remake. Starring Chloe Grace Moretz, Julianne Moore, and Ansel Elgort, this 2013 remake of the Brian DePalma classic – all together now – felt unnecessary but was actually pretty solid. Again, it’s not as good as the original film – or at least not as iconic, since that original movie has some of its own issues – but I found this outing to be perfectly enjoyable. As long as you watch it without directly comparing it to the 1976 version, you should have a good time watching it. This week, it comes to 4K Ultra HD (with an accompanying Blu-ray disc in the case) for the first time as a Collector’s Edition release, and as usual for Shout Factory, they’ve done a good job with it.

The 4K Audio/Video: The audiovisual upgrade for Carrie on 4K is definitely noticeable, even if the film isn’t the most visually or aurally impressive. Imagery is nice and clear with strong shadow delineation, while colors are vibrant and clarity is strong. The surround soundtrack won’t win any awards, but it does create a nice, tense atmosphere throughout the film.

The Special Features: There’s an audio commentary with director Kimberly Pierce, two interview featurettes, an alternate ending, deleted scenes, two additional featurettes, and a few brief extras on top of that.

The Wrap-Up: The 2013 Carrie won’t go down as a horror classic, or likely even a well-remembered horror movie, in the long term. It seems like a lot of people have already forgotten it exists. But it’s a decent enough watch, and if you’ve already seen the original a hundred times, it might be time to give the remake a chance.

Icons Unearthed: Star Wars

The Show: Created by Brian Volk-Weiss, who shot to fame with the Netflix series The Toys That Made UsIcons Unearthed is a show that takes huge pop culture icons and dives into the making of them. The first season featured – what else? – Star Wars. Now, look, there’s no shortage of Star Wars-related making-of material out there, but Volk-Weiss does something different than everyone else. First of all, he gets access to pretty much anyone and everyone who had anything to do with the property he’s exploring. He also digs up archival footage and interviews like nobody’s business. And then, he puts it all together in a light-hearted and zingy way that makes the shows so much fun to watch, it feels like no other documentaries out there. Over the course of six episodes, the show dives deep into the creation of the Star Wars films, and pretty much everyone you would want to see interviewed is interviewed. There’s a bunch of new interviews, but there’s also a ton of archival interviews with people who are no longer with us, or sometimes just because they’re good interviews. In short, even if you think you’ve seen every Star Wars making-of there is, I can guarantee you you’re going to hear fun new stories you’ve never come across before and you’ll love every minute of it.

The Special Features: You get six hours of bonus interviews with Marcia Lucas, Anthony Daniels, and Billy Dee Williams, effectively giving you their entire interviews uncut.

The Wrap-Up: I can’t recommend Icons Unearthed: Star Wars highly enough. It’s fun, it’s informative, it has unlimited awesome footage and movie scenes and interviews. In short, it’s everything a Star Wars fan could want. Go get it.

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