This Week in DVD is a column that compiles all the latest info regarding new DVD releases, sales, and exclusive deals from stores including Target, Best Buy, Circuit City, and Fry’s.

Please don’t take the commentary on the movies and TV shows too seriously, as they’re meant not to be reviews but rather previews that include the general thoughts and ramblings of a twice-committed DVD addict. The categories represent solely the author’s intentions towards the DVDs at hand, and are in no way meant to be a reflection on what he thinks other people should rent or buy. So if he ends up putting a movie you like in the “Skip it” section without having seen it, please keep in mind that the time you could spend leaving a spiteful but ultimately futile comment could instead be used for more pleasant things in life. Like buying DVDs.

Rent It

CITY OF EMBER
If you listen to the /Filmcast, you’ve likely already heard me discuss how surprised I was by this film. It’s not amazing by any means, and it certainly has its problems (poor action sequences, unsatisfying climax, etc.), but thanks to the film’s unique and engaging story, appropriately clunky yet cool set design, and strong performances from its young leads, it manages to make for a genuinely entertaining old school adventure flick. It’s a real shame that it bombed at the box office as poorly as it did.
Blu-ray? No.
Notable Extras: Absolutely nothing. Bummer.

BEST PRICE
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$16.99 $19.99 $17.99 $19.99
Amazon – $19.99

EXCLUSIVE DEAL:
What? Save $5 when you buy City of Ember and Igor.
Where? Best Buy.

THE EXPRESS
If It weren’t for the positive reviews, I probably would’ve overlooked this movie completely, dismissing it as nothing more than an unnecessary Remember the Titans retread. Granted, I still believe this is true, but at least it appears to be well made and acted. For many, that will be enough.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: Audio commentary with director Gary Fleder, featurettes (Making of The Express, Making History: The Story of Ernie Davis, Inside the Playbook: Shooting the Football Games, From Hollywood to Syracuse: The Legacy of Ernie Davis), and deleted scenes.

BEST PRICE
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$19.99
Amazon – $19.99

IGOR
This has been an unusual year for CGI films. For arguably the first time since 2001 (with Shrek), we actually have non-Pixar animated films nearing that studio’s standards. Among these films are Bolt, Kung Fu Panda, and Horton Hears a Who. Igor, however, is not one of them. Despite an inventive premise that plays on classic monster movie tropes, the response to this movie has been very middling, and it didn’t even seem to last a week before being instantly forgotten following its release. I still intend on checking it out though, since I’m a sucker for animated films, and while it may not be one of the best of the year, it certainly doesn’t appear to be scraping the bottom of the barrel either (see: Space Chimps).
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: Deleted scenes, bloopers and a “Be An Igor” featurette.

BEST PRICE
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$16.99 $19.99 $17.99 $19.99
Amazon – $19.99

EXCLUSIVE DEAL:
What? Save $5 when you buy City of Ember and Igor.
Where? Best Buy.

HENRY POOLE IS HERE
The more I read about this film, the more interested I become, and the more I think I’ll probably hate it. Those probably sound like two contrasting viewpoints, so allow me to explain: I’m an atheist. This movie is about faith. No, not faith. If what I’ve read is accurate, it seems this movie is about God, pure and simple. To elaborate, it’s about an atheist rejecting the notion of a miracle until eventually he is convinced otherwise by repeatedly being confronted with the undeniable presence of God. Now, I could be wrong, but I really can’t see this being handled in a way that’s anything other than ham-fisted and completely logic-defying. That said, I still intend on watching it with an open mind, and once I do, I’ll report back with my thoughts on the /Filmcast.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: Director/writer commentary, a making of featurette, and 2 music videos (All Roads Lead Home, Henry Poole Is Here).

BEST PRICE
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$19.99 $14.99 $19.99
Amazon – $19.99

REPO! THE GENETIC OPERA
I have no expectations that this will be a good film in any respect, and yet, my curiosity is piqued enough by it to merit a rental. How the hell do you even describe this film? A dystopian cyberpunk horror/fantasy goth-rock opera? Odds are, this description is far more interesting than the actual film, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t enticed. It’s even enough to convince me to ignore Paris Hilton’s presence in the film. It also helps that the film stars Anthony Head, who played Giles in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Glad to see the guy’s getting work!
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: Two audio commentaries and 2 featurettes (From Stage to Screen, Legal Assassin – A Repo Man).

BEST PRICE
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
N/A $14.99 $11.99 $14.99
Amazon – $13.99

Skip It

MAX PAYNE
(Available as single-disc and Special Edition)
I had heard early word of mouth that this movie was bad, but I didn’t want to believe it. “Just because it’s based on a video game, that doesn’t mean it has to suck!” I repeated these words endlessly before the film’s release, right before referring to its badass trailer as proof of its potential. Of course, I did the very same thing prior to the release of Hitman… Apparently I still haven’t learned my lesson. Max Payne is the worst kind of bad movie: the boring kind. The only redeeming quality is its cinematography, which makes watching the film a bizarre viewing experience due to the strong contrast of the effective visual style against the terrible direction and acting.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: The single disc will include both rated and unrated cuts of the movie, and a commentary with director John Moore and crew. The special edition will include all of that, plus a Picture Production Featurette – Part 1, a Michelle Payne animated graphic novel, and a digital copy of the film.

BEST PRICE*
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$16.99 $14.99
Amazon – $22.99

*Does not include 2-Disc Edition, which costs $22.99 at each of the listed stores (including Amazon).

SAW V
(Available as rated edition, Unrated Director’s Cut and Unrated Collector’s Edition)
I’m going to use this paragraph as a placeholder for all future entries in the Saw series that need to be discussed for “This Week in DVD”, because hell if I’m going to bother wasting any energy writing something new for every movie when they clearly have no intention of paying audiences the same courtesy. This series has been on repeat since Saw II, simply throwing in a different batch of poorly developed characters to go along with a few familiar faces while they’re forced to engage in increasingly more ridiculous death-traps that usually end with something horribly gross and/or gory. And at the end of it all, we’re supposed to jump out and shout, “Holy shit, what a shocking twist!” regardless of the cheap storytelling mechanics involved and the massive lapses in logic/believability. If that wasn’t enough, you can experience the whole thing once again next Halloween (and sadly, a lot of people are apparently eager to). Talk about depressing.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: Both unrated editions will include a director’s commentary, a producer’s commentary, and 5 featurettes (The Pendulum Trap, The Cube Trap, The Coffin Trap, The Fatal Five, Slicing the Cube: Editing the Cube Trap). Exclusive to the Collector’s Edition is a talking box, spinning blade, and collector’s booklet.

BEST PRICE*
Target Best Buy Circuit City Fry’s
$16.99 $14.99
Amazon – N/A

*Does not include 2-Disc Edition, which costs $22.99 at Target, $27.99 at Best Buy, and $28.99 at Fry’s. (Circuit City price N/A.)

EXCLUSIVE DEAL:
What? Free Saw V flipbook keychain.
Where? Circuit City.

Other noteworthy DVDs available this week…
Chris Rock: Kill the MessengerAmusementMoonlight (The Complete Series)The Powerpuff Girls (The Complete Series)The Notebook (Limited Edition Gift Set)El Norte (Criterion Collection)The Children of Huang Shi

The Specials
NOTE: Some deals may be in-store only.


Exclusive: Exclusive Soundtrack with The Notebook (Collector’s Edition) ($22.99).

$12.99 – The Office (Season 1)
$18.99 – Family Guy (Vol. 1 – 6), Nip/Tuck (Seasons 1 – 4)


$19.99 – Firefly (Complete Series), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Seasons 1 – 6), 24 (Seasons 1 – 5), The Unit (Seasons 1 – 2), Prison Break (Season 1), Burn Notice (Season 1)

$5.99 – Kill Bill: Vol. 1, Clerks, Equilibrium, Sling Blade, Good Will Hunting, Gangs of New York, and more…

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Reader Feedback: SAW V – What Did You Think?

If you make the trip to the movie theater this weekend, chances are you’re there seeing SAW V, Clint Eastwood’s Changeling, High School Musical 3 (although I doubt the demographic that reads /Film would be caught dead watching that film) or Pride and Glory. We want to know what you thought! Post your comments below.
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SAW Movie Marathon This Thursday

This Thursday – October 23rd, Lionsgate Films is holding SAWfest at 42 participating AMC movie theaters around the country. For only $15, moviegoers will be able to see all five SAW films on the big screen. The event will start at 4:00pm, with short intermissions between films, leading up to the midnight screening of SAW V (also included).

Five films for $15 is one hell of a deal. I’ll be at the San Francisco Metreon screening along with Jon Christensen of /Gamer. I’m not sure if I’ll make it through the entire thing, but we’re going to try. You can see a complete listing of participating movie theaters below.

AMC “SAWFEST” PARTICIPATING THEATRES

STATE MARKET THEATRE

Arizona Phoenix AMC Mesa Grand 24

Arizona Phoenix AMC Deer Valley 30 with IMAX

California Los Angeles AMC CityWalk 19 with IMAX

California Los Angeles AMC 30 at The Block

California Los Angeles AMC Burbank 16

California Los Angeles AMC Ontario Mills 30

California Los Angeles AMC Norwalk 20

California Los Angeles AMC Del Amo 18

California San Diego AMC Mission Valley 20

California San Diego AMC Palm Promenade 24

California San Jose AMC Mercado 20

California San Francisco AMC Metreon 16 with IMAX

California San Francisco AMC Bay Street 16

Colorado Denver AMC Westminster Promenade 24

District of Columbia Washington AMC Hoffman Center 22

Florida Miami AMC Sunset Place 24

Florida Miami AMC Aventura 24

Florida Orlando AMC Loews Universal Cineplex 20

Florida Orlando AMC Pleasure Island 24

Florida Tallahassee AMC Tallahassee Mall 20

Georgia Atlanta AMC Southlake Pavilion 24

Illinois Chicago AMC Loews Streets of Woodfield 20

Illinois Chicago AMC Crestwood 18

Kansas Kansas City AMC BarryWoods 24

Maryland Baltimore AMC Loews White Marsh 16

Massachusetts Boston AMC Loews Boston Common 19

Michigan Detroit AMC Star Southfield 20

New Jersey Clifton AMC Clifton Commons 16

New Jersey New Brunswick AMC Loews New Brunswick 18

New Jersey Elizabeth AMC Loews Jersey Gardens 20

New York New York City AMC Empire 25

New York New York City AMC Loews Palisades Center 21

Ohio Cincinnati AMC Newport on the Levee 20

Ohio Columbus AMC Easton Town Center 30 with IMAX

Pennsylvania Philadelphia AMC Neshaminy 24

Pennsylvania Philadelphia AMC Loews Cherry Hill 24

Pennsylvania Pittsburgh AMC Loews Waterfront 22

Texas Dallas AMC The Parks at Arlington 18

Texas Dallas AMC Mesquite 30

Texas Houston AMC Gulf Pointe 30

Virginia Norfolk AMC Hampton 24

Washington Seattle AMC Loews Alderwood 16

New SAW V Video Clip


Lionsgate has released a video clip from SAW V on the film’s official website. I’m told that the clip is the same one that was shown at Comic Con in July. It begins with a man bound to a table. A recorded video message plays where Jigsaw explains that the man must sacrifice his hands in order to save himself. A Pendulum swings back and fourth above him, and there is only 60 seconds before it will tear his body to shreds. Again, there is the morality/justice play, as it is explained that the man served only five years in prison, and that the murder that he committed should have kept him there for life. I know that SAW films get crapped on for their extreme use of violence, but I don’t think enough credit is given to the morality-infused situational traps which have made this a popular movie franchise.

Final SAW V Movie Poster

Lionsgate has released the final poster for SAW V. The tagline promises “You won’t believe how it ends”. One thing that has been consistent throughout all of the SAW films – they have always ended with a twist, even when it is barely logical.

In the fifth installment of the SAW franchise, Hoffman is seemingly the last person alive to carry on the Jigsaw legacy. But when his secret is threatened, Hoffman must go on the hunt to eliminate all loose ends.

Saw V hits theaters on October 24th 2008.

Saw V’s Blood Drive Event Poster

Have any of our readers participated in a Saw blood drive? Do people discuss plot points before fainting? Any stories? The Lionsgate horror franchise and its filmmakers are once again sponsoring this worthy cause while promoting the October release of Saw V. These movies were never my thing, but their signature marketing style and imagery admittedly still gets my attention. The above poster for the drive, a macabre companion to the prior poster’s pin-up sex appeal, is no different.

via FearNet

/Film reader, b-nasty, chimes in with, “No me gusta. I don’t trust Lionsgate with my blood.”

SAW V Teaser Trailer

Lionsgate premiered the first teaser trailer for SAW V at Comic Con, and it’s now available online on Yahoo. The trailer begins very untraditionally, actually more like a film you would expect to be the complete opposite of Saw. And then suddenly we get assaulted by the film’s true nature – the trap. But the big question is – how will they continue to keep Jigsaw involved in the storyline. Watch the trailer now below.

SAW V hits theaters on October 24th 2008.

Saw V Movie Poster

You can hate the SAW series all you want, but one thing you’ve got to admit is that the poster designs for the series have been some of the best one-sheets in recent years. Lionsgate has released the first teaser poster for SAW V on Shock. And while this isn’t the best poster in the series, it might be the sickest one yet.

In the fifth installment of the “Saw” franchise, Hoffman is seemingly the last person alive to carry on the Jigsaw legacy. But when his secret is threatened, Hoffman must go on the hunt to eliminate all loose ends. Directed by David Hackl and starring Tobin Bell, Costas Mandylor, Scott Patterson, Betsy Russell, Mark Rolston, Carlo Rota, Julie Benz, Greg Bryk, Laura Gordon and Meagan Good.

SAW V hits theaters around Halloween, October 24th 2008.


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