After the unprecedented success of Pixar's 'Toy Story', Hollywood studios recognized the emergence of a new film genre and quickly acquired the equipment and expertise in order to ensure they had a piece of the computer animated cash-cow. One of those moves was Fox's acquisition of Blue Sky Studios, who prior to their hit 'Ice Age' were specializing in short films and television commercials. With full studio backing, the company flourished, and the third film in their Ice Age series – 'Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs' – hits Blu-ray today.
For 'Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs', Manny the mammoth, Sid the sloth, Diego the saber tooth tiger, along with Ellie (Manny's main squeeze) all return for a new adventure. This time, the group must work together, along with Buck, a one-eyed dinosaur hunting weasel, to save Sid.
On the whole, the Ice Age series has struggled with consistency, much the same as any computer animation studio outside of Pixar. Some parts of the film are generally entertaining, able capture the imagination of children and adults alike, while other parts feel hollow and strung out, lacking the magic of the scene before it. 'Dawn of the Dinosaurs' isn't going to make any new fans, but with millions who have already enjoyed the first two in the series, it's an easy purchase to add to your collection.
DisneyToon Studios, the red-headed step-child of Walt Disney Animation Studios focused on direct-to-video and television animation, delivers the second Tinker Bell CG film today on Blu-ray with 'Tinker Bell and the Lost Treasure'. The title pretty much is about as much description as most will need, but any parent with a young daughter at home will pick up some major cool points by bringing this title home.
Staff reviewer Kenneth Brown made his way through the film, and while not overly impressed by the story (no shock there), he did recognize Disney's wonderful Blu-ray presentation: "With a near-perfect video transfer, a commendable DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround track, and a decent (albeit small) supplemental package, it's sure to please kids and their AV-savvy parents alike."
Classic television fans are sure to look at 'Prisoner: The Complete Series' which gets released on Blu-ray today. The series, which originally was broadcast in the US in 1968, has gained a cult following over the years due to the unique story behind the short-lived series. Staff reviewer Jeffrey Kaufman had a chance to revisit the series in its recently restored form, and concluded in his review: "You've never experienced anything quite like it, and it remains one of the most memorable series of all time for good reason. This Blu-ray offers a subtle, if noticeable, picture upgrade, but no lossless audio. The real selling points here are the excellent extras."
There was nothing glaringly wrong with the 2006 Blu-ray release of 'Stargate', though it was restrained by the technology available at that time – namely BD-25s and MPEG-2 video. Three years later, Lionsgate decided to give the fan favorite another go on Blu-ray with 'Stargate: 15th Anniversary Edition'. A new high definition transfer along with a DTS-HD MA lossless soundtrack make this an easy upgrade, with over four hours of extras putting a cherry on top.
Those looking for some classic campy horror will no doubt already be aware that 'Night of the Creeps' is out on Blu-ray today, though fans of films like 'Orphan' on Blu-ray today.
And finally a quick note about 'Monty Python: Almost the Truth' which is out on Blu-ray today. While it's been years since the Pythons put out any new material for fans to enjoy, they are still one of the most popular comedy teams of all time. Today's Blu-ray release delivers the six one-hour episodes of the recent documentary that aired on IFC which go into great detail regarding their television series and films. If you are a fan, this is a must-own title that you will be more than happy to display next to your Blu-ray copy of 'Life of Brian'.
For a complete listing of all the Blu-ray titles released today, click here.
Just got my Night of the Creeps BD in the mail today Will be watching it tonight! Haven't seen this film since I was in high school almost 20 years ago!! I used to have it on tape and watched it all the time back then...