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You are here: Community Film Blu-ray/DVD Roundup for Sept. 8, 2023

Blu-ray/DVD Roundup for Sept. 8, 2023

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Welcome to another look at some of the highlights arriving on Blu-ray and DVD. There’s one huge release in this edition, as well as a few interesting independent titles arriving. And, as always, plenty of older features have received high-definition upgrades. So, if you can’t make it out to the movies this week or need to stay indoors for a few days, be sure to give one of these titles a try.


MASTER GARDENER: The latest feature from writer/director Paul Schrader (First Reformed, Auto Focus, Affliction, Light Sleeper) involves an exacting and demanding horticulturist working on a large historic estate in the country who answers to the land’s dowager. One day, she demands he take on a new apprentice, her troubled great-niece. The lead reluctantly agrees and everyone immediately finds themselves at odds. As time passes and dark secrets are revealed about all the characters, tension levels boil over.

Overall, the press liked this drama/thriller. Almost one-third of them found it stilted, taking issue with the lead character’s behavior and calling him unlikable. However, most thought the film was engaging, noting that it was a human character study and that all the characters were interestingly flawed and compelling to watch.

Joel Edgerton, Sigourney Weaver and Quintessa Swindell headline the picture.

SPIDER-MAN: ACROSS THE SPIDER-VERSE: This sequel to the 2018 animated superhero feature picks up with the young lead after he saves his world with the help of Spider-mans from alternate dimensions. This time out, the protagonist is recruited to join a team that can help protect all multiverses. When a new and even more dangerous threat arises and threatens all dimensions and timelines, the group must overcome their differences and work together.

Critics gave this follow-up high marks. There were one or two naysayers, who wrote that the picture was long, overstuffed and didn’t offer a satisfying conclusion. Yet all others were wowed by the animation, calling it a wild and trippy delight with clever scenarios and an enjoyably sprawling narrative. They commented that they were excited to see where the story was going and welcomed more installments.

The voice cast includes Shamiek Moore, Hailee Steinfeld, Oscar Isaac, Jake Johnson, Issa Rae, Daniel Kaluuya, Jason Schwartzman, Brian Tyree Henry, Luna Lauren Velez, Greta Lee and Rachel Dratch. Be sure to note that multiple versions of the title will be released (including 4K, Blu-ray and more), so be sure you pick up the right one for you.

THE YOUTUBE EFFECT: Most readers will know Alex Winter from his acting roles in the Bill & Ted series and The Lost Boys, but he’s made a great career for himself as a director and documentarian. His latest title is both an inspirational and cautionary examination of YouTube. This includes how the site was created and its massive (and, at times, dangerous) influence on the world and public since its launch in 2005.

Response towards the non-fiction feature was very upbeat. A small contingent of critics felt that the picture didn’t offer anything new to say about the subject. However, the vast majority thought the subject was fascinating and that the movie effectively examined the pros and cons of this sudden phenomenon on the minds of viewers. A few even stated that the picture would likely stand an important documentary for future generations.



And below is a selection of the week’s notable TV-themed releases.

Black Snow (Australian TV Series) (Sundance) DVD

Harley Quinn Season 3 (Warner Bros.) Blu-ray

NCIS: Los Angeles The Complete Series (Paramount) DVD

Star Trek: Picard The Complete Series (Paramount) Blu-ray

Star Trek: Picard The Final Season (Paramount) Blu-ray


By Glenn Kay
For the Sun