Top DVD & Blu-ray Releases: Week of 2-26-12

The stars are out for these new releases! From Henry Fonda to Lucille Ball and beyond, Hollywood icons take center stage this week. Check out these DVD and Blu-ray releases and catch up on the latest and greatest titles that are now available.

The Fugitive

Powerful drama from John Ford which afforded Henry Fonda one of the greatest roles of his career. He plays a priest on the run in an anti-clerical Central American country who must confront a gangster, the country’s strong-arm tactics, and his own honor. Based on Graham Greene’s “The Power and the Glory”; co-stars Dolores Del Rio, J. Carrol Naish, Pedro Armendariz, Leo Carrillo.

Slim

A young farmhand (Henry Fonda), already weary of working his father’s spread, gets hooked on the adrenaline when he watches a high-tension power line repair crew in action. He convinces the hard-boiled foreman (Pat O’Brien) to take him on as an apprentice. The topkick is soon impressed with the youngster’s moxie, but winds up unprepared for the sparks when he introduces the protege to his girlfriend (Margaret Lindsay). Jane Wyman, Stuart Erwin co-star.

The Buccaneer

Swashbuckling action saga is set during the War of 1812, as General Andrew Jackson (Charlton Heston) enlists the aid of pirate Jean Lafitte (Yul Brynner) in stopping the British navy. With Claire Bloom, Charles Boyer, Inger Stevens. Anthony Quinn stepped in for ailing father-in-law Cecil B. DeMille to direct this remake of DeMille’s 1930s historical drama.

Tall Story

Jane Fonda‘s screen debut finds her playing a man-seeking coed who woos college basketball phenom Anthony Perkins. Complications arise when the basketball team goes against a Russian squad, and gamblers want to get in on the action. High-spirited farce also stars Ray Walston, Anne Jackson, and Van Williams.

The Young Stranger

The strained bonds between a restless teenager (James MacArthur) and his film producer father (James Daly) get tested further when a minor incident in a theater escalates into the youth’s being hauled into a police station on assault charges. John Frankenheimer’s big-screen directorial debut co-stars Kim Hunter, James Gregory, Whit Bissell.

Hugo

Martin Scorsese directed this whimsical adaptation of Brian Selznick’s novel “The Invention of Hugo Cabret.” In 1931, Parisian orphan Hugo Cabret (Asa Butterfield) attempts to complete the repairs on a clockwork automaton his late father (Jude Law) had begun. With help from a young girl (Chloe Grace Moretz), Hugo finds his quest leading to an unexpected encounter with legendary filmmaker Georges Melies (Ben Kingsley), who has lost his passion for the cinema. With Sacha Baron Cohen, Christopher Lee.

Beneath the Dark

Ely (Dennis Quaid) was a football champion in high school–but perhaps he should have been named “most likely to succeed”…at being a homicidal maniac! Now, the jock-turned-mortician is married and runs a funeral home that is rumored to be haunted. Will a group of teenagers expose him to the world as a monster to be feared? Or, will they meet the same fate as his previous victims? Tony Oller, Aimee Teegarden also star.

Clinton

“American Experience” examines the life and times of Bill Clinton in this mesmerizing account of the 42nd U.S. president. From his Arkansas upbringing to his tenure as governor of that state and highly controversial two terms in the Oval Office, the program revisits such explosive subjects as the characterization of Clinton as a draft dodger, his battles with a Republican Congress, and the scandalous indiscretion that nearly saw him expelled from office. Includes interviews with administration members, friends, and journalists. Narrated by Campbell Scott.

Covert Affairs: Season One

All 11 episodes from the debut season–including the “Pilot,” “South Bend Suarez,” “Communication Breakdown,” “Fool in the Rain,” and “When the Levee Breaks”–are featured in a three-disc set.

Fast Five

“The Fast and the Furious” franchise’s turbocharged fifth entry follows ex-convict Dominic (Vin Diesel) as he partners with former cop Brian (Paul Walker) and beauty Mia (Jordana Brewster). As they all try to evade federal agents who want them in jail, they travel to Rio de Janeiro and plan on pulling off one last job that could ensure their freedom. Along the way, they must deal with hard-nosed fed Luke (Dwayne Johnson) and a ruthless drug lord. With Tyrese Gibson.

Green Zone

Matt Damon reteamed with “The Bourne Ultimatum” director Paul Greengrass for this action-packed thriller set against the backdrop of the United States’ liberation of Iraq in 2003. Tasked with finding Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction, Army chief warrant officer Damon finds evidence of a cover-up and embarks on a dangerous crusade to uncover the truth–encountering mysterious CIA agents and a determined journalist along the way. Greg Kinnear, Amy Ryan, Brendan Gleeson co-star.

Here Come the Brides: The Complete Second Season

All 26 episodes from the series’s second season–including “Far Cry from Yesterday,” “The Legend of Big Foot,” “Lorenzo Bush,” “To the Victor,” and “Two Women”–are featured in a six-disc set.

I Melt with You

Friends since college, four middle-aged men (Thomas Jane, Rob Lowe, Jeremy Piven, and Christian McKay) get together for their 25th annual reunion and decide to mark the occasion by embarking upon a hedonistic odyssey of travel, drink, and drugs–and the fulfillment of an old pact. When their activities take a darkly unexpected turn, the men are forced to confront their worst insecurities and inner demons. With Carla Gugino, Arielle Kebbel.

In the Cool of the Day

A middle-aged publisher (Peter Finch), struggling with the unhappiness of his trauma-scarred wife (Angela Lansbury), tries to intercede in the similarly rocky union of a younger colleague (Arthur Hill) and his chafing spouse (Jane Fonda), only to fall into an affair with the young woman on a whirlwind visit to Greece. Steamy sudser co-stars Constance Cummings, Alexander Knox,Nigel Davenport.

InSight

Accidentally electrocuted during a failed attempt to resuscitate a stabbing victim, ER nurse Kaitlyn finds herself experiencing flashbacks that may well be those of the dead woman. When the police refuse to believe her story, Kaitlyn begins her own quest into the crime, but will her unwanted memories make her the killer’s next target? Natalie Zea, Sean Patrick Flanery, Adam Baldwin, and Christopher Lloyd star in this offbeat thriller.

Jack Kerouac: King of the Beats

Virtually defining the Beat Generation with his 1951 book “On the Road,” author Jack Kerouac helped transform what writers thought to be possible with literature. This documentary tribute to the revered cultural icon boasts fascinating archival footage, plus interviews with colleagues and close friends that shed new light on Kerouac’s life and works.

Jackie Chan: Kung Fu Master

Jackie Chan is featured in this coming-of-age tale about a rebellious young boy (Zhang Yishan) who’s not doing well in school and is getting bullied by his peers. The youngster decides to track down the legendary Chan and become his disciple in order to solve his troubles. However, his quest leads to plenty of misadventures that may just teach him some valuable life lessons.

Johnny English Reborn

English, Johnny English (Rowan Atkinson), is back in this slapstick-stuffed sequel to the 2003 spy spoof. This time out, the determined (if occasionally cloddish) agent returns from a long exile in Tibet to snuff out the plot to murder a Chinese diplomat. Before he’s fit for field duty, however, English will have to submit to a close examination by an MI7 psychiatrist (Rosamund Pike). With Dominic West, Gillian Anderson, and Togo Igawa.

Justice League: Doom

The world’s greatest superheroes face their ultimate challenge–the mind of the Batman–when the Darknight Detective’s secret plans to take down his Justice League colleagues should they turn against mankind fall into the hands of immortal villain Vandal Savage and a cabal of their deadliest enemies. Feature-length animated adventure stars the voices of Kevin Conroy, Tim Daly, and Nathan Fillion.

Law & Order: The Tenth Year

All 24 episodes from season 10–including “Gunshow,” “Justice,” “Panic,” “Fools for Love,” and “Vaya Con Dios”–are featured in a five-disc set.

Midsomer Murders: Set Nineteen

Four-disc set includes “The Made-to-Measure Murders” (2010), “The Sword of Guillaume” (2010), “Blood on the Saddle” (2010), and “The Silent Land” (2010).

Mission: Impossible: The ’89 TV Season

All 16 episodes from the second and final season–including the two-part “The Golden Serpent,” “War Games,” “Banshee,” “The Assassin,” and “The Sands of Seth”–have been collected in a four-disc set.

Nijinsky

Lavish biodrama of controversial 20th-century dancer Vaslav Nijinsky chronicles his innovative career, his affairs with women and men, and his slow descent into madness. Director Herbert Ross blends emotional drama and spectacular dance sequences; George De La Pena stars in the title role; with Alan Bates, Alan Badel, Leslie Browne, and (in his film debut) Jeremy Irons.

No Subtitles Necessary

Escaping from the boot of the Soviet Union in the mid-1950s after first meeting as film students in Budapest, Laszlo Kovacs and Vilmos Zsigmond later became two of the world’s most accomplished cinematographers. This documentary honors their friendship and artistry as Peter Bogdanovich, Richard Donner, Peter Fonda, Haskell Wexler, and other Hollywood icons discuss their work. Features clips from “Easy Rider,” “McCabe and Mrs. Miller,” “The Deer Hunter,” “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” and more.

Period of Adjustment

Tennessee Williams penned the play that inspired this seriocomedy about two couples whose marriages are undergoing problems. Nurse Jane Fonda and Korean War veteran Jim Hutton find their recent nuptials have invited money and sexual dilemmas, while Tony Franciosa thinks wife Lois Nettleton‘s parents are meddling in their affairs.

Samantha Brown’s Asia

Spirited Travel Channel star Samantha Brown leads you on another adventure through exotic lands in this series focused on the most memorable destinations in the Far East. Learn what to see, what to eat, and much more, as Brown offers money-saving insights and other tourism tips while journeying through Vietnam, Thailand, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, and elsewhere.

Shark Week: Restless Fury

How the time goes by…it’s Shark Week again! In this collection of Discovery Channel programs, the much-feared and respected sea creatures are studied up close–almost too close!–as viewers are treated to frightening footage of real shark attacks, as well as helpful insights separating myth from fact. Two-disc set includes “Into the Shark Bite,” “Ultimate Air Jaws,” “Day of the Shark III,” “Shark Attack Survival Guide,” “Sharkbite Beach,” and “Shark Week’s Best Bites,” plus the bonus programs “Sharks: Are They Hunting Us?” and “Man vs. Fish: Tiger Shark.”

Simon

A think tank of scientists brainwashes bamboozled psychologist Alan Arkin into believing he’s a space alien come to Earth in order to teach mankind how to better itself. It all unravels when he escapes to the sanctuary of a communal cult, and finds himself a target of the U.S. military. Madeline Kahn, Wallace Shawn, and Fred Gwynne co-star in this comic concoction written and directed by frequent Woody Allen collaborator Marshall Brickman.

The Amish

A window opens into the mysterious world of the Amish people by way of this fascinating production from the “American Experience” series. Reviewing the religious community’s 500-year-old traditions through unique access to the famously camera-shy folk, the program also delivers intimate accounts of the particulars of Amish living in the 21st century.

The Six-Million Dollar Man: Pilot TV Movies and Complete Season 1

All 13 episodes from the first season–including “Population: Zero,” “Day of the Robot,” “The Rescue of Athena One,” “The Coward,” and “Run, Steve, Run”–plus the made-for-TV movies “The Six Million Dollar Man,” “Wine, Women and War,” and “The Solid Gold Kidnapping” are collected in a six-disc set.

The Bionic Woman: Season 1

All 18 episodes from the first season–including the two-part crossover episodes “Bionic Woman” and “The Return of the Bionic Woman,” as well as “Angel of Mercy,” “Claws,” and “The Ghost Hunter”–are featured in a four-disc set.

The Manions of America

This dramatic miniseries of epic sweep, created by daytime TV guru Agnes Nixon, traces four decades in the lives of an Irish immigrant family and how their passions and dreams are fulfilled in 19th-century America. Driven from Ireland during the Great Potato Famine, Rory O’Manion (Pierce Brosnan) finds a better life in the United States, eventually reunited with Rachel Clement (Kate Mulgrew), the woman he loves. David Soul, Linda Purl, and Anthony Quayle co-star.

The New Adventures of Old Christine: The Complete Fifth Season

All 21 episodes from season five–including “Bahamian Rhapsody,” “The Curious Case of Britney B,” “It’s Beginning To Stink A Lot Like Christmas,” “Subway, Somehow,” and “Get Smarter”–are featured in a five-disc set.

Warehouse 13: Season One

All 12 episodes from the first season–including the “Pilot,” “Magnetism,” “Elements,” “Duped,” and “MacPherson”–are featured in a three-disc set.

Here’s Lucy: Season Five

All 24 episodes of the fifth season–including “Lucy’s Big Break,” “Lucy and Eva Gabor Are Hospital Roomies,” “Lucy and Joe Namath,” “My Fair Buzzi,” and “Lucy and Harry’s Memoirs”–are featured in a three-disc set.\

For details and availability of more of this week’s new releases, click here.

Here’s a look at last week’s DVD and Blu-ray releases.

  • Betty Romano

    I have searched for months now for an old movie from about 1941-42 with Peggy Ann Garner and Barbara Whiting…”JUNIOR MISS”…don’t know what studio put it out but loved it so much and would like to get a copy. Any leads or info will be much appreciated…must be a copy somewhere????

  • Pat

    Betty—–I too am a fan of “Junior Miss.”—It’s owned by Fox who produced it and every year I look for them to release it in time for Christmas. I have a VHS copy that I taped off of AMC about 20 years ago—It’s deteriorated over the years, but I still make it a part of my Christmas movie viewing each holiday. Maybe someday someone at Fox will realize what they have and release it on DVD.

    • Bettyroman2

      Thanks for your response….I didn’t know AMC ever showed it.   Will try contacting Fox and AMC directly.

  • James R Bezanson

    If “On The Road” was indeed published in 1951, Jack Kerouac (King of the Beats) would have escaped a lot of needless suffering. Sorry to be an ogre (for I enjoy MovieFanFare),but, unfortunately for Kerouac,”…Road” was not published until 1957.

  • Jimrick10

    DOES ANYONE KNOW OF A DVD OR VHS EVER BEING ISSUED FOR THE 1950 EAGLE LION CINECOLOR FILM….ROGUE RIVER, WITH RORY CALHOUN AND PETER GRAVES???????

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