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DVD/Blu-ray Roundup for Dec. 23, 2016

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Welcome back to another Blu-ray and DVD roundup. Just because the holidays are here, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t a number of interesting new releases. You’ll find them all listed below. As always, click on any links you see to read full reviews. So if you can’t make it out to the movies this week, be...

‘Sing’ hits too many sour notes

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Rating « out of 4 Stars

Running Time: 110 minutes

This is a weird flick.

Judging the cover, Sing should be at least decent. Great cast [McConaughey, Witherspoon, Johansson…], a Christmas opening date and it’s a cartoon about talking animals from the studio that brought you Minions and Despicable Me.

Sounds good. But now let’s discuss what it’s about. There’s this koala bear named Buster Moon (an excitable McConaughey) and he owns a theater. He needs a hit so he puts on a singing competition. Right there is the first major misstep. Singing competitions reached peak popularity about 7 years ago. Old news. So right out the gate, the film seems dated.

So Buster holds...

‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’ stuns visually, but fails dramatically

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Rating: «« out of 4

Running Time: 134 min.

If you’re a fan of the new slew of Star Wars films, I have some good news. Based on the reaction of the audience at a preview screening, you’re probably going to enjoy Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. It is a very slick and well-produced film that looks even more spectacular than last year’s Episode VII: The Force Awakens. However, it’s also unlikely to do much that will hook those (myself included) who aren’t already big aficionados of this cinematic universe.

Set just before the events of Star Wars: Episode IV: A New Hope, this story revolves around a mission to discover a design weakness in the villainous Empire’s Death Star...

DVD/Blu-ray Roundup for Dec. 16, 2016

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It’s another busy week filled with a wide variety of releases arriving on DVD and Blu-ray. So if you can’t make it out to the movies this week, be sure to give one of these titles a try!

Big New Releases!

Ben-Hur - This lavish and expensive remake of the of the 1959 Charlton Heston classic tanked at the box office and with critics. It uses a great deal of CGI to update the tale of a prince falsely accused of treason who returns to his homeland to seek revenge. Critics suggested that while the spectacle was still grand, the movie was otherwise unremarkable and dramatically flat. Now viewers can make up their own minds. It stars Jack Huston, Tony Kebbell, Rodrigo Santoro...

You Can Skip This Year’s ‘Office Christmas Party’

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Rating: «« out of 4

Running Time: 104 min.

Around this season, reviewers are inundated with films up for big, end-of-the-year awards. They’re so prevalent that I was actually looking forward to decompressing with something silly and light. To be frank, I’m not sure if seeing so many effective and thoughtful films in a short span of time has just made me especially critical this week, but it certainly makes Office Christmas Party look wanting in several departments.

At a certain point, with so many flatly written lines, I literally just decided to note the gags that I thought really worked. This list ended up being very short, with a half dozen or so jokes that earned a chuckle...

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