New Blu-ray and DVD releases: Get your favorite movies on disc Credit: UniversalSupplied Art
IT & Systems Management

New Blu-ray and DVD releases: Get your favorite movies on disc

If you prefer watching a movie on disc versus streaming it over the internet, we understand. A Blu-ray disc in particular provides you with better video quality, a more consistent experience, loads of special features, and a tangible product that can be added to your home entertainment collection and enjoyed anytime and anyplace.  

These nine recent releases are worthy of your consideration.

First Man (2018)

1 firstman blu jma Universal

Oscar-winning director Damien Chazelle and composer Justin Hurwitz (Whiplash, La La Land) return with their third feature, a technical marvel that nonetheless lacks in the character department.

Although the 1969 moon landing by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin has been well-documented in many other movies and documentaries, First Man tries to get even more inside it with its up-close, rattling sound design and enveloping visual effects; it’s arguably the closest that normal viewers will get to the experience. But as the stoic, unmoved Armstrong, Ryan Gosling is trapped in a dull role, and as his stay-at-home wife, Claire Foy can do nothing but look perturbed.

  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Release date: January 22, 2019
  • Company: Universal
  • Audio: Dolby Atmos (English),  Dolby TrueHD 7.1 (English), Dolby Digital Plus 7.1 (Spanish, French)
  • Aspect ratio: 2.39:1
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Region A
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
  • Running time: 141 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG-13 for some thematic content involving peril, and brief strong language
  • Digital copy: Yes
  • DVD: Yes
  • 4K: Available separately
  • Bonus features: Commentary track by director Damien Chazelle, screenwriter Josh Singer, and editor Tim Cross; deleted scenes; featurettes: “Shooting for the Moon” (4 mins.), “Preparing to Launch” (4 mins.), “Giant Leap in One Small Step” (5 mins.), “Mission Gone Wrong” (3 mins.), “Putting You in the Seat” (7 mins.), “Recreating the Moon Landing” (6 mins.), “Shooting at NASA” (3 mins.), “Astronaut Training” (4 mins.)
  • SRP: $34.98

The Grinch (2018)

2 grinch blu jma Universal

The first feature-length version of the Dr. Seuss’ classic, Ron Howard’s 2000 live-action film was a vulgar monstrosity. This new, computer-animated version of The Grinch is much gentler and lighter, with bright Christmas colors, crisp movement, and a more fluid character arc.

None other than Benedict Cumberbatch voices the Grinch, whose transformation now makes more emotional sense, and sweet Cindy Lou Who (voiced by Cameron Seely) spends the movie trying to catch “Santa Claus” so she can talk to him about her gift (which is, actually, something for her mother). The only odd touch is the hip-hop soundtrack, which is a little aggressive for the movie’s tone. Even so, The Grinch is good for 86 minutes of warm smiles come next holiday season, or, really, anytime.

  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Release date: February 5, 2019
  • Company: Universal
  • Audio: Dolby Atmos (English), Dolby TrueHD 7.1 (English), Dolby Digital 5.1 (Spanish), Dolby Digital Plus 7.1 (French)
  • Aspect ratio: 2.39:1
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Region A
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
  • Running time: 86 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG for brief rude humor
  • Digital copy: Yes
  • DVD: Yes
  • 3D: Available separately
  • 4K: Available separately
  • Bonus features: Featurettes: “From Green to Screen” (6 mins.), “Illuminating the Grinch” (5 mins.), “My Earliest Grinch Memories” (3 mins.), “Grinchy Gadgets” (3 mins.), “Songs from His Little Heart” (3 mins.), “Any Who Can Draw” (7 mins.), “Christmas Around the World” (2 mins.); interactive feature “Who’s Who in Who-Ville”; two lyric videos: “Cindy-Lou’s Yule Log,” “Production Babies;” 3 mini-movies: “Yellow Is the New Black,” “The Dog Days of Winter,” and “Santa’s Little Helpers”; the making of the mini-movies
  • SRP: $34.98

Halloween (2018)

3 halloween18 blu jma Universal

Unpredictable director David Gordon Green (George Washington, Pineapple Express, Stronger) turns to horror for the first time in his career, with this 11th film in the Halloween franchise. Like many others in the series, it erases everything that came before it, and references only John Carpenter’s original 1978 masterpiece.

Green shoots in widescreen and pays homage to the original, but adds his own unique, enthusiastic touches; it may not be terrifying, but it’s sometimes heart-stopping. Jamie Lee Curtis reprises her iconic role as Laurie Strode; it’s exactly 40 years later, and she has become an angry, paranoid survivalist, while her grown daughter (Judy Greer) resents her. Of course, Laurie’s brother Michael Myers gets loose again...

  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Release date: January 15, 2019
  • Company: Universal
  • Audio: DTS:X (English), DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 (English), DTS 5.1 (Spanish, French)
  • Aspect ratio: 2.39:1
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Region A
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
  • Running time: 106 minutes
  • MPAA rating: R for horror violence and bloody images, language, brief drug use and nudity
  • Digital copy: Yes
  • DVD: Yes
  • 4K: Available separately
  • Bonus features: Deleted/extended scenes (13 mins.); featurettes: “Back in Haddonfield: Making Halloween” (6 mins.), “The Original Scream Queen” (3 mins.), “The Sound of Fear” (3 mins.), “Journey of the Mask” (3 mins.), “The Legacy of Halloween” (4 mins.)
  • SRP: $34.98

The Hate U Give (2018)

4 hateugive blu jma 20th Century Fox

Based on a young adult novel by Angie Thomas, The Hate U Give feels a great deal more relevant and more powerful than all the Twilights, Divergents, and Maze Runners in the world.

Amandla Stenberg gives an immense performance as Starr, a teen who lives in a tough, black neighborhood and commutes to an all-white prep school. She carefully keeps two separate identities for the two places, but her efforts are undone when she witnesses a white cop shooting her childhood friend; she must decide whether to risk everything and come forward. The late screenwriter Audrey Wells and director George Tillman Jr. take their time to flesh out the story and a host of layered supporting characters. Regina Hall and Russell Hornsby in particular are excellent as Starr’s parents. The title, inspired by Tupac Shakur, may sound off-putting and angry, but it’s a positive, empowering movie.

  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Release date: January 22, 2019
  • Company: 20th Century Fox
  • Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 (English), Dolby Digital 5.1 (French, Spanish)
  • Aspect ratio: 2.40:1
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Region A
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
  • Running time: 132 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG-13 for mature thematic elements, some violent content, drug material, and language
  • Digital copy: Yes
  • DVD: Yes
  • 4K: Available separately
  • Bonus features: Audio commentary by director George Tillman, Jr., actors Amandla Stenberg and Russell Hornsby, author Angie Thomas and editor Craig Hayes; extended scenes (15 mins.); featurettes: “Starting a Conversation” (10 mins.), “The Talk” (8 mins.), “Code Switching” (9 mins.), “Starr: Shine Your Light” (14 mins.), “The Heart of Georgia” (5 mins.), “Thank U Georgia” (2 mins.); image gallery; trailer
  • SRP: $34.99

The Old Man & the Gun (2018)

5 oldmanandgun blu jma 20th Century Fox

Robert Redford announced that this would be his final acting role; whether or not that statement turns out to be true, The Old Man & the Gun is one beautifully perfect final bow. He plays Forrest Tucker, a lifelong criminal who now robs banks with his fake mustache, hat, and his kind demeanor (his victims tell police he “seemed like a nice guy”).

Sissy Spacek plays his romantic interest (amazingly, it’s Spacek and Redford’s first film together, and they’re delightful), and Tom Waits and Danny Glover play his partners in crime. Writer/director David Lowery (Pete’s Dragon, A Ghost Story) crafts this true story with his trademark quiet, dreamy touch, nestling gently within moments rather than skimming over the surface.

  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Release date: January 15, 2019
  • Company: 20th Century Fox
  • Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (English), Dolby Digital 5.1 (English, Spanish, French)
  • Aspect ratio: 2.40:1
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Region A
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Spanish
  • Running time: 93 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG-13 for brief strong language
  • Digital copy: Yes
  • DVD: Yes
  • 4K: No
  • Bonus features: Audio commentary by writer/director David Lowery; “Everything Else We Shot” (deleted scenes); featurettes: “Prison Cats,” “On Filmmaking,” “31 Wake-Ups,” “Joining the Hunt”; stills gallery
  • SRP: $34.99

The Sisters Brothers (2018)

6 sistersbrothers blu jma 20th Century Fox

John C. Reilly optioned the novel by Patrick DeWitt and cast himself as the pragmatic Eli Sisters, one of a pair of hired killers in the Western The Sisters Brothers. The other brother is the drunken, loose-cannon Charlie (Joaquin Phoenix). Their boss, the Commodore, hires them to catch an inventor named Hermann Warm (Riz Ahmed). At the same time, an educated investigator, John Morris (Jake Gyllenhaal), is also after Warm.

When they all meet and discover what it is that Warm has invented, they decide to team up. It’s a strange story, swinging from brutal violence to soft moments of men revealing their innermost hearts, but it’s unique and compelling. It’s the assured English-language debut by acclaimed French director Jacques Audiard (Read My Lips, A Prophet, Rust and Bone).

  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Release date: February 5, 2019
  • Company: 20th Century Fox
  • Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (English), English descriptive
  • Aspect ratio: 2.39:1
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Region A
  • Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
  • Running time: 121 minutes
  • MPAA rating: R for violence including disturbing images, language, and some sexual content
  • Digital copy: Yes
  • DVD: Yes
  • 4K: No
  • Bonus features: Featurettes: “Striking Gold: Making a Modern Day Western,” “Brothers Forever,” “Wanted Dead or Alive”; Q&A panel; stills gallery; theatrical trailer
  • SRP: $34.99

Suspiria (2018)

7 suspiria blu jma Lionsgate

This remake of Dario Argento’s 1977 horror classic goes on quite a bit longer and loses its way well before the end, but the 2018 version of Suspiria contains some powerful, startling imagery that’s hard to dismiss, or forget.

Tilda Swinton gives a truly amazing performance that more people ought to be talking about. The Oscar-nominated Luca Guadagnino (Call Me by Your Name) directs this story of a young dancer Susie Bannion (Dakota Johnson) who attends a prestigious dance academy in Berlin, where strange things are happening. Chloë Grace Moretz appears as a freaked-out dancer whose disappearance opens a slot for Susie.

  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Release date: January 29, 2019
  • Company: Lionsgate
  • Audio: Dolby TrueHD 7.1 (English), English descriptive
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Region A
  • Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish
  • Running time: 152 minutes
  • MPAA rating: R
  • Digital copy: Yes
  • DVD: No
  • 4K: No
  • Bonus features: Behind-the-scenes featurettes: “The Making of Suspiria” (4 minutes), “The Secret Language of Dance” (4 minutes), “The Transformations of Suspiria” (4 minutes); trailers for other Amazon Studios releases at startup
  • SRP: $24.99

Widows (2018)

8 widows blu jma 20th Century Fox

After three severe, mature films (Hunger, Shame, 12 Years a Slave), filmmaker Steve McQueen teams with crime writer Gillian Flynn for a lighter entertainment with Widows. Unfortunately, he’s unable to loosen up and have a little fun, and, despite scenes that could have been exhilarating or empowering, the movie is a bit glum. But it looks terrific and has a great, impressive cast.

Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez, and Elizabeth Debicki are the widows; their husbands were killed in a heist and now they owe $2 million to a shady politician and his murderous crew. Cynthia Erivo, Colin Farrell, Daniel Kaluuya, Jacki Weaver, Robert Duvall, Liam Neeson, and many others co-star.

  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Release date: February 5, 2019
  • Company: 20th Century Fox
  • Audio: Dolby Atmos (English), English Descriptive Audio 5.1, Dolby Digital 5.1 (Spanish, French)
  • Aspect ratio: 2.39:1
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Region A
  • Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
  • Running time: 129 minutes
  • MPAA rating: R for violence, language throughout, and some sexual content/nudity
  • Digital copy: Yes
  • DVD: Yes
  • 4K: Available separately
  • Bonus features: Three-part featurette: “Widows Unmasked: A Chicago Story” (“Plotting the Heist: The Story,” “Assembling the Crew: Production,” and “The Scene of the Crime: Locations”); photo gallery
  • SRP: $34.99

The Wife (2018)

9 wife blu jma Sony Pictures

Glenn Close has won a batch of awards for her leading performance in The Wife, but was denied an Academy Award (Olivia Colman took the Oscar for her role as the Queen of England in The Favourite). Close plays Joan Castleman, the wife of novelist Joseph (Jonathan Pryce), who has just won the Nobel Prize for Literature. The family—including grown son and aspiring writer David (Max Irons)—are off to Stockholm for the ceremony, where Joan re-evaluates her life.

Based on a novel by Meg Wolitzer, the movie is a bit gimmicky and precious about the art of writing; it saves a “twist” for the midpoint, and uses younger actors in flashback, when a more direct approach might have been more intimate and revealing. Still, Close is excellent, and so is Christian Slater in a supporting role as a pesky biographer.

  • Format: Blu-ray
  • Release date: January 29, 2019
  • Company: Sony Pictures
  • Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (English), Dolby Digital 5.1 (Czech, Hungarian, Spanish)
  • Aspect ratio: 2.39:1
  • Resolution: 1080p
  • Region A
  • Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Bulgarian, Croatian, Czech, Hungarian, Polish, Romanian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovenian
  • Running time: 100 minutes
  • MPAA rating: R for language and some sexual content
  • Digital copy: No
  • DVD: Available separately
  • 4K: No
  • Bonus features: “In Conversation with the Cast of The Wife” (moderator Janelle Riley discusses the film with Director Björn Runge and actors Glenn Close, Jonathan Pryce, Christian Slater, and Annie Starke, 38 mins.); “Q&A with Glenn Close & Author Meg Wolitzer” (16 mins.); “Keeping Secrets: Glenn Close on The Wife” (6 mins.); trailer; previews for other Sony features
  • SRP: $30.99

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