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ESCAPE ROOM Brings Survival to DVD

escape room

Jeri Jacquin

This week on DVD, Digital HD and On Demand from director Will Wernick and Lionsgate is a thrill in tight spaces and what it takes to survive from the ESCAPE ROOM.

Christen (Elisabeth Hower) wants to do something unique for her boyfriend Tyler’s (Evan Williams) big thirtieth birthday. Boarding a chauffer bus, they all turn over their cell phones and purses being told they are participating in mysterious escape room game.

Toasting with champagne, they drive around the city with blacked out windows waiting to arrive at their destination. Walking in the building it is dark and has an eerie look about it but that doesn’t stop their excitement of the game. Along with Natasha (Annabelle Stephenson), Anderson (Dan J. Johnson), Conrad (John Ierardi) and Tabby (Kelly Delson), they begin to explore their surroundings.

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Coupled in separate room, they each are set a task of getting out of what ever restraints they have been put in. The only one alone is Tyler who isn’t sure what his task is going to be and Christen isn’t with him. Discovering Anderson and Natasha in the next room, now the three of them work on the next clues to get out of their rooms.

That leads them to lovebirds Tabby and Conrad who make quick work of their puzzle. In each room they also find a mysterious card. Still looking for Christen they are weirded out when they see her in a cage and realize they have 45 minutes to get her out.

Room by room they look for clues but things begin to go horribly wrong and panic sets in. Tyler, Natasha and Anderson are now fighting for the life of Christen as the clock shows them no mercy and escape seems hopeless.

It’s not a game any longer.

Williams as Tyler is sharp and leads the group in solving the puzzles. With the exception of a momentary breakdown, he knows it’s time to focus and get them all out alive. To be honest I think I’d follow him before the others who seem to be losing it. Stephenson as Natasha begins with other things on her mind, or perhaps I should say some other person. She doesn’t let go of it and it becomes her crazy trigger.

Johnson as Anderson seems to get plenty of grief from girlfriend Natasha and I’m fairly sure I’d be setting her up if I were him. Ierardi as Conrad is just a guy that is pretty crazy about girlfriend Tabby (they are cute if not a little saccharin laden) who happens to be celebrating a friends’ birthday. I might rethink ever going to a friend’s birthday ever again.

Hower as Christen has the crazy role of sitting in a cage and watching everything that happens to her friends. The good news is that at least her friends thought enough of her to try and figure out how to rescue her.

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I have to give a serious shout out to the blue eyed sexy Billy Flynn who opens the film. Yes, I knew right away that Chad from the soap Days of Our Lives was going to be cool to watch. My only downside is the big question – why couldn’t he have been in it more?

Lionsgate is a global leader in motion picture production and distribution for theatres, television, home entertainment and more. Theatre franchises include THE HUNGER GAMES, and DIVERGENT along with JOHN WICK. Now, adding this film to it’s 16,000 motion picture and television titles you can see everything coming soon as well as available now at http://www.lionsgate.com.

ESCAPE ROOM has the Special Features of a Director’s Commentary, Deleted Scenes, Bloopers and a Trailer Gallery. I had to watch the bloopers and they totally cracked me up which is a little twisted for a thriller/horror film right?

ESCAPE ROOM is a thriller that has some real cool bite to it. The clues are crafty and clever and if I was ever in that situation you might as well take me out early. I never would have thought of (without giving anything away) the intricacies of the clues – well played!

This is also the perfect film if, like me, you happen to love spending the entire month of October watching one thriller-horror a night! I mean isn’t that what everyone does? It’s a way to bring together the love of being scared out of our wits and ESCAPE ROOM certainly qualified!

In the end – will you survive?

 

 

 

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THE ZOOKEEPER’S WIFE Comes to Bluray and a Chance to Win!

 

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Coming to Bluray this June from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment is Jessica Chastain and Daniel Bruhl in a riveting and powerful true story THE ZOOKEEPER’S WIFE.

In 1939 Poland, working wife and mother Antonina Żabińska (portrayed by Ms. Chastain) became a hero to hundreds. Antonina and her husband Jan (Mr. Heldenbergh) care for animals at the Warsaw Zoo and have raised a family in an idyllic existence. Their world is overturned when the country is invaded by the Germans and they are forced to report to the Reich’s newly appointed zoologist (Mr. Brühl).  To fight back on their own terms, the Żabińskis risk everything by covertly working with the Resistance and using the Zoo’s hidden passages to safeguard human life.

Based on the true story told in The New York Times best seller by Diane Ackerman, the critically acclaimed and heart-pounding WWII drama The Zookeeper’s Wife debuts on Digital HD on June 20, 2017 and on Blu-ray™, DVD and On Demand on July 4, 2017 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. Directed by Niki Caro (North Country) from a screenplay adaptation by Angela Workman (Snow Flower and the Secret Fan), the film stars two-time Academy Award nominee Jessica Chastain (The Help), Johan Heldenbergh (The Broken Circle Breakdown), Michael McElhatton (Game of Thrones), and Golden Globe Award nominee Daniel Brühl (Rush).

Focus Features’ The Zookeeper’s Wife on Blu-ray™, DVD and Digital HD comes packed with exclusive bonus content including deleted scenes as well as a special behind-the-scenes look at the making of the film and captivating interviews with the real-life Żabiński family.

We have an amazing opportunity for five of our readers to win a copy of THE ZOOKEEPER’S WIFE! Please email hellomoviemaven@aol.com with ‘animal lover’ in the subject line along with your name and address. We will be pulling winners and notifying them through email. We are so excited to be offering this amazing film so get your entries in now!

 

 

Beauty and the Beast Dances and Sings onto Bluray

Beauty and the Beast cover

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray/DVD and Digital HD from director Bill Condon and Disney is the return of a tale as old as time with BEAUTY AND THE BEAST.

Belle (Emma Watson) is a young girl living in a small village where everyone knows everyone. So much so that Belle is known as an unusual girl who would read than find a husband. Living with her father Maurice (Kevin Kline), he is also seen as unusual.

Also in the town is Gaston (Luke Evans), a tad self centered man who sees Belle as his prize and wants to marry her. Along with side kick LeFou (Josh Gad), it is a constant struggle to understand why she is not falling at his feet!

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During a trip to the neighboring town, Maurice unexpectedly loses his way and ends up in a tattered castle. He quickly discovers that the inhabitants are a little more magical and terrifying. A Beast (Dan Stevens) roars down and puts Maurice in a tower cell.

When their horse returns to Belle, she immediately knows her father is in trouble and rides off to find him. Finding her father in a cell and meeting the Beast, Belle offers a trade to stay in exchange for releasing her father.

Maurice returns to the town and tries to convince everyone that Belle is being held prisoner by a Beast. In the meantime Belle is getting to know her surroundings and the magic that holds the castle captive. Taking care of her is the candlestick Lumiere (Ewan McGregor), the elegant clock Cogsworth (Ian McKellen), the motherly teapot Mrs. Potts (Emma Thompson) and her teacup son Chip (Nathan Mack), the chiffarobe Madame Garderobe (Audra McDonald) and the ivory keys of Maestro Cadenza (Stanley Tucci).

Getting to know the Beast, Belle begins to see a different side of the creature. This thrills the residence of the castle since there is a curse with a glass encased rose and when the last petal falls they all will become unchangeable forever.

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The Beast begins to feel so much more than he could have imagined and when Belle needs to be with her father, his heart gives in. But that isn’t all changing as Gaston convinces the town that the Beast must be destroyed. The two sides collide but one thing is certain, nothing will ever be the same.

It begins with heart!

Watson is charming as Belle and she certainly has made her way out of another iconic character. She twirls and sings her way though and looks to be enjoying her performance. Stevens voicing the Beast is gruff and unmoving at first but, of course, finds his heart and is changed.

Evans as Gaston is very funny and manages to capture the arrogance and narcissism of the marriage minded self-absorbed hunter. Gad as LeFou is clever and also funny.  Kline as Maurice gets a chance to portray Belle’s father in a less absent minded way but still well done.

McGregor as Lumiere is charming, but then again he is supposed to be. McKellen as Cogsworth has that voice that clearly defines who he is. Thompson as Mrs. Potts is sweet and caring along with the adorable Mack as Chip. McDonald as Madame Garderobe needs lessons in fashion and Tucci as Cadenza plays the ivories beautifully.

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Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment began distributing under its own label in 1980 and continues to bring quality programming to kids and kids at heart. Home of the most beloved animated features including SNOW WHITE, PINOCCHIO and SLEEPING BEAUTY to name a few is what keeps families coming back for more. To see what is currently available to add to your own family library please visit. www.movies.disney.com for their At Home titles!

The film is obviously beautiful and live-action fans will have a good time singing along whenever they like to song they already know and one or two new ditties. The costuming is stunning and the cgi is clever. The cast is fun and that is all that will matter to families ready to have a real home movie night.

The Bluray includes so many Bonus Extras including Enchantable Table Read – You’re invited to join the cast for the movie’s elaborately staged table read, complete with singing and dancing to live music, set pieces and more, A Beauty of a Tale – Explore the process of transforming a beloved animated film into a new live-action classic, and The Women Behind Beauty and the Beast – Emma Watson introduces several of the many talented women in all aspects of production who helped bring this enchanted tale to life.

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That isn’t all! Also included From Song to Screen: Making the Musical Sequences – Discover what goes into creating some Beauty and the Beast’s best-known moments, Making a Moment with Celine Dion, Beauty and the Beast Music Video & Making the Music Video, Extended Song: Days in the Sun – Learn more about Beast’s childhood in an alternate version of this beautiful song, and finally Deleted Scenes, Song Selection and so much more!

This BEAUTY AND THE BEAST pack includes a Bluray, DVD and Digital HD which means with the code you can take the gang where ever you are going and instantly stream and download all 129 minutes of fun.

In the end – be our guest!

THE BOUNCE BACK Bounces on DVD This Week

 

the bounce back

Jeri Jacquin

Rolling onto DVD and Digital HD this week from director Youssef Delara and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment is a look at unexpected love with THE BOUNCE BACK.

Matthew Taylor (Shemar Moore) is an author with a book on relationships called The Bounce Back. Touring to promote it he also tries to find time to meet a lady or two and be with his daughter Aleya (Nadja Alaya).

Promoter Terry Twist (Bill Bellamy) wants Matthew to actually be in a relationship to help book sales. During a two-day seminar he meets Kristin Peralta (Nadine Velazquez), a therapist who thinks Matthew pushes a quick fix to people’s pain. Her friends Sarah (Megan Stevenson) and Jessica (Kali Hawk) decide to get her out for some fun.

THE BOUNCE BACK, FROM LEFT: BILL BELLAMY, SHEMAR MOORE, 2016. © VIVA FILMS

When a video of Kristin trying to put Matthew in his place makes it onto YouTube, the two are asked to appear on shows across the country. Terry is less than thrilled with the set up and even less happy that they seem to be getting along.

After a whirlwind tour together can only lead to one thing, having feelings for one another! The problem with that is when you put two people together who have feelings for one another and they believe they are experts in relationships…well you get the rest.

They have bounced into each others lives!

Moore as Matthew plays the smooth talking relationship expert who isn’t in a relationship himself. Instead he hangs out with his manager and daughter when not doing a seminar. Clashing with the character of Kristin sets everything on fire yet causes both of them to rethink the philosophies they push. Moore is charming and turns it up to high heat.

Velazquez as Kristin is a therapist who is trying to help people but keep running into those who fall for Taylor’s book The Bounce Back. Trusting that her friends will keep her entertained or a watching late night television is her idea of staying out of being hurt in a relationship.

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The comic relief comes with Bellamy as Terry, the manager who wants to keep his client in the spot light. Not happy when Kristin puts a kink in his plans, he tries to keep them apart. He is a smooth talking, deal making manager and Bellamy plays the comedy to the hilt.

Stevenson as Sarah and Hawk as Jessica are happy go lucky gals who just want what’s best for their girl. They are a tad spacey but that’s what Kristin needs in her life – especially when taking everything else so seriously.

Alaya as Aleya is charming and adorable. Discovering love for herself, Dad is keeping an eye on her but also giving her the space to handle her crush.

Other cast include Michael Beach as Lester, Matthew Willig as Vladamir, Rizwan Manji as Daryl, Robinne Lee as Sam, Denise Boutte as Julie and Annie Sertich as Danika.

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment brings award-winning global product and new entertainment to DVD, Bluray, and Digital HD. There amazing collection offers fans an opportunity to expand their own home libraries with the best films. To discover what other titles they have please visit www.fox.com.

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THE BOUNCE BACK is a charming look at love, relationships and life – at any age. Each of the characters are charming and have their own pains to deal with mixed with everything life can throw their way. That makes the story relatable, even with the comedy mixed in.

This is a perfect film for a girls’ get-together or a date night in! Order some take-out, call everyone over and make a totally fun night of it. There is something amazing about finding a film that can delight everyone and THE BOUNCE BACK brings just that.

The DVD and Digital HD of THE BOUNCE BACK can be played instantly streaming and download for television, computer, tablets and Smartphones. That makes enjoying the film almost everyplace is great for everyone to enjoy.

In the end – sometimes you have to turn the page to fall in love.

ICE AGE: The Great Egg-Scapade Arrives for Spring on DVD

ice cover

 

Jeri Jacquin

On DVD and Digital HD from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment in time for spring is the next colorful adventure from the crazy gang from ICE AGE: The Great Egg-Scapade.

Manny (Ray Romano), Diego (Denis Leary), Sid (John Leguizamo), Ellie (Queen Latifah) and the rest of the gang are back! Spring is coming and it’s time to celebrate. Of course Manny and Diego think that means sitting in front of the cave TV. window watching their favorite games instead of helping Ellie gather eggs to dye.

Meanwhile Sid has another Sid-idea and tells Manny and Diego he is opening up an egg sitting service. Being a sloth just lying around is something Sid can relate to and thinks his idea will be a big hit. Reaching out to the other creatures he actually manages to get a few Moms that need an egg-sitting break.

While ‘sitting’ the eggs disappear and the parents are beside themselves. Manny, Diego and Ellie swing into action and discover a map with a ransom note demanding a boat in exchange for the eggs. Thinking they can outsmart the dastardly ex-pirate bunny Squint (Seth Green), they find an ally in bunny Clint (Blake Anderson) who wants to make things right.

This is the world’s first egg hunt!

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Of course there is absolutely nothing downer to say about the gang. Romano comes in with everything that is Manny. Still the grumpy protective mammoth of this ice age motley crew, he always does what’s right. He loves his family and friends so don’t let the complaining fool you. Leary as Diego has always been the character I have loved watch coming around. He is a saber with a heart of gold and don’t let the long-tooth sway you otherwise.

Leguizamo as Sid is…well Sid. He clearly loves his herd and only wants to fit in the best way possible. Of course that usually leads to chaos in some form but it doesn’t mean he won’t have back up from Manny and Diego. It’s good to know who your true friends are.

Latifah as Ellie is the motherly matriarch of the herd and is making sure that holiday celebrations are big, colorful and include everyone. When the eggs go missing, Ellie gets a mindset that is purely parental and I relate to her and all the hilarity that follows.

Green as Squint gets a chance to be the bad-bunny of the story. Still upset about what happened to Captain Gutt and the boat, he wants a new boat and his old life back. Anderson as Clint knows his hare-brained brother and the idea to steal the eggs isn’t cool. Not about to let things get out of hand, he helps the group but not before trouble slows everything down.

Other cast include Keke Palmer as Peaches, Seann W. Scott as Crash, Josh Peck as Eddie, Lili Estefan as Gladys Glypto, Wendy Williams as Condor Mom, Gabriel Iglesias as Cholly Bear, Taraji P. Henson as Ethel and Chris Wedge as Scrat.

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment brings award-winning global product and new entertainment to DVD, Bluray, and Digital HD. There amazing collection offers fans an opportunity to expand their own home libraries with the best films. To discover what other titles they have please visit www.fox.com.

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ICE AGE: The Great Egg-Scapade is absolutely fun, hilarious, colorful and needs to be sitting along every ICE AGE film in the home library collection. There is everything to love with the celebration of spring, Easter and the traditions of egg coloring and the fun filled hunt. ICE AGE has always brought the storylines that include family and that means no matter what species you are.

The acceptance of each other has been a constant mainstay of the ICE AGE series and it continues. There are so many life lessons that include diversity of these creatures, acceptance of their differences and a tolerance – of course I’m speaking of Sid here! The folks at Blue Sky Studios give families everything we love about the ICE AGE gang and then top it off with a great ensemble cast that have returned and humor that keeps both kids and kids at heart laughing.

The DVD includes the Special Features of Ice Age: Collision Course Cosmic Scrat-tastrophe, Ice Age – The Story So Far, Six Scrat Shorts, and Lost Footage. The Digital HD means you can watch ICE AGE: The Great Egg-Scapade on the family television, computer, tablet or Smartphone.

In the end – the gang is here to help celebrate Easter!

 

Coming to Bluray is the Brilliant and Stunning JACKIE

jackie-cover

 

Jeri Jacquin

On Digital HD today and Bluray/DVD March 7th from director Pablo Larrain and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment is an intimate look at a woman the world knows as JACKIE.

Jacqueline Bovier Kennedy (Natalie Portman) is the First Lady of the United States along with being a mother and the wife of President John F. Kennedy (Caspar Phillipson). After the tragic assassination of the President in Dallas, Texas, Jackie brings a journalist (Billy Crudup) to talk about her role entering the White House, the days before and after the death of the President.

From taking on the role of redecorating the White House and her many television appearances, Jackie brought glamour and glass to Washington. With the help of her assistant Nancy Tuckerman (Greta Gerwig), the First Lady is keeping the pace of what is expected of her.

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In an instant that all changed and now Jackie must shift from being First Lady to a widow with two children. Leaning on brother-in-law Bobby Kennedy (Peter Sarsgaard) it is a confusing time as Lyndon Johnson (John Carrol Lynch) must now keep the government running.

Packing her children to leave the residence, Jackie must also decide how she wishes to proceed with a presidential funeral. In the midst of her pain and grief, it is in a single moment that the plans for a nation’s grieving fall into place.

These are her words and her actions that help us all remember Camelot!

Portman as Jackie is impeccable from start to finish with her Best Actress nomination for the Oscars. Costume designer Madeline Fontaine were also nominated for an Academy Award and rightly so for the beautiful gowns and dresses that are completely Jackie. From the pink pill box hat and suit to the dress worn in the telecast from the White House, the viewers will be transported with Portman’s portrayal of demeanor, grace and style. She brings an elegance all her own with a riveting performance from start to impeccable finish.

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Sarsgaard as Bobby Kennedy is devastated by the death of his brother and knows he must be there for Jackie and the children. Caught in the middle between trying to save the legacy of his brother’s work as President and the incoming Leadership, Sarsgaard gives an emotional performance that I truly enjoyed.

Crudup as the Journalist knocks on the door of Jackie Kennedy believing her to be a woman devastated by death but instead finds a person of amazing strength, a bit of a bite and totally in control.

Other cast include John Hurt as The Priest, Richard E. Grant as Bill Walton, Beth Grant as Lady Bird Johnson, and Max Casella as Jack Valenti.

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment brings award-winning global product and new entertainment to DVD, Bluray, and Digital HD. There amazing collection offers fans an opportunity to expand their own home libraries with the best films. To discover what other titles they have please visit www.fox.com.

JACKIE film is an absolutely stunning on so many layers and levels. It is a unique telling of a time in history that has been covered hundreds of ways but never from the perspective of Jackie Kennedy herself.

Portman brings an impeccably dressed, soft spoken First Lady to the screen that does have cutting moments when tested. Watching the film it felt like a voyeuristic look at her pain and emotions at a time most private in her life.

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The cinematographer is absolutely stunning and the score (nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Score for Mica Levi) didn’t drag out emotions from the viewer but instead enhance them. The costuming for every character in the film brought amazing believability to the time frame the film portrays.

In truth I am mesmerized by the film because I didn’t know what to expect. What struck home for me was when Jackie plays the song Camelot and Richard Burton’s voice rings out telling the story of another fallen believer.

JACKIE is a gorgeous film that should receive every high praise available and was on my list as a Top Ten film of 2016! Now on Bluray/DVD and Digital HD it is a must-see.

The Bluray/DVD and Digital HD Special Features include From Jackie to Camelot Featurette, Audio Commentary by Pablo Larrain and Natalie Portman and a Gallery. The box cover is equally as stunning bringing JACKIE an honored place in everyone’s home entertainment library

In the end – she will make them remember the legacy known as Camelot.

 

TROLLS is Stunning, Funny and a Winner!

trolls

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to stunning Bluray as well as DVD and Digital HD from directors Walt Dohrn, Mike Mitchell, DreamWorks and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment is a sing-song, dance along life of TROLLS.

Troll Village is a happy place unless you’re an unhappy Bergen! The only way a Bergen can be happy is if they have swallow a troll! The only Bergen who hasn’t experienced happiness is Prince Gristle (Christopher Mintz-Plasse). On his big day all havoc breaks loose when the royal Chef (Christine Baranski) fails to bring the Prince his prize.

That’s because the Trolls have escaped to start a fearless and fun life far away from the Bergens and the Chefs banishment. Led by King Peppy (Jeffrey Tambor), his daughter Poppy (Anna Kendrick) plans a celebration that is filled with fun, decorations, music, singing and dancing – how else would a troll celebrate?

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The one troll who isn’t happy about it is Branch (Justin Timberlake) a downer troll who thinks Poppy’s celebration will do nothing but give away their location to the Bergin. But Creek (Russell Brand), DJ Suki (Gwen Stefani), Cooper (Ron Funches), Guy Diamond (Kunal Nayyar), Harper (Quvenzhane Wallis), Satin (Aino Jawo) and Chenille (Caroline Hjelt) are just a few friends who believe in Poppy.

On the outskirts of the Bergen kingdom, the Chef has been searching for the Trolls. The night of the party Branch’s prediction comes true as the party lights are a beacon for the Chef to follow and she kidnaps Poppy’s friends. Determined to get them back she and Branch (after some convincing) head toward the Bergen castle where now King Gristle lives.

There they meet Bridget (Zooey Deschanel), a Bergen who has a secret crush. Poppy decides to help the disheveled servant find love in exchange for freeing her friends. When none of them know is that all their plans may be thwarted by someone they never suspected.

But nothing stops a dancing, singing, positive Troll!

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Kendrick as Poppy is delightful, funny, and just so darn cute. Her voice lends to the charming troll with a quickness of wit. Of course I am a Kendrick fan so it doesn’t surprise me that she seriously makes me laugh – a lot – in this film.

Timberlake as Branch, I mean seriously, vocally grumpy, funny, sarcastic, and facial expressions that, even though they are animated, are hilarious. I love that this is something different for Timberlake and I’m sure having a child of his own now makes this more fun than he could have realized.

Mintz-Plasse as King Gristle is a spoiled yet entertaining troll believing a myth that he defines his life by. Deschanel as Bridget is very cute and there is something to be said for colorful troll hair as a man-attractor!

Brand as Creek seems to have made a comfortable life for himself with doing vocals in animation. Winning over hearts in the DESPICABLE ME series, he has now landed himself one again with TROLLS.

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Other animated voices are Jeffrey Tambor as King Peppy, John Cleese as King Gristle Sr., James Corden as Biggie, Walt Dohrn, Smidge, Rhys Darby as Bibbly, Meg DeAngelis as Moxie Dewdrop, GloZell Green as Grandma Rosiepuff, Kandee Johnson as Mandy Sparkledust, and Mike Mitchel as Darius.

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment brings award-winning global product and new entertainment to DVD, Bluray, and Digital HD. There amazing collection offers fans an opportunity to expand their own home libraries with the best films. To discover what other titles they have please visit www.fox.com.

DreamWorks Animation brings amazing animated entertainment to films, television specials and series for the young and young at heart audiences around the world. Names one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For, DreamWorks Animations has brought iconic and beloved films such as the SHREK, MADAGASCAR, KUNG FU PANDA and HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON series along with PUSS IN BOOTS and THE CROODS. For more of what they have to offer please visit http://www.dreamworksanimation.com.

TUBS OF POPCORN: I give TROLLS five tubs of popcorn out of five and it deserves every one of those tubs. This is a fun animated film filled with music, color, a fantastic story, dancing and silliness in mass amounts.

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That’s important to me because my granddaughter is a lover of animated films that keep her little toes tapping and she is still dancing! In fact she loves this film so much that TROLLS will definitely become a mainstay in her every expanding DreamWorks library.

The characters each have their own defined personalities which is what makes TROLLS such a winner. There is something relatable for everyone along with all the elements we have come to love in animated films.

The TROLLS Bluray, DVD and Digital HD includes Party Mode – Sing, dance and laugh along with the Trolls in this engaging and interactive feature. On Bluray you can use your remote control to have fun on-screen moments!, Travel Through Troll Village – Cloud Guy narrates a fun exploration of Troll Village, The Potion for Stop-Motion is a behind-the-scenes and part stop-motion tutorial that explores the process of creating Poppy’s visually stunning scrapbook.

Also included is Creating Troll Magic as TROLLS Production Designer Kendal Cronkhite-Shaindlin leads a kid-friendly exploration of her role as production designer, TROLL 2 TROLL AS Poppy and Branch have a friendly debate on important topics such as “Cat vs. Dog”, Inside the Bunker with an in-depth exploration of Branch’s “special place” narrated by Cloud Guy and finally Deleted Scenes intros by Director Mike Mitchell and Co-Director Walter Dohrn.

TROLLS has love, family, friendship, acceptance, dancing, singing, and scrapbooking! The animation is so sharp and defined down to the wisps of troll hair, the fuzz on their felt outfits and the fluffs of their Cloud friend. DreamWorks has absolute set the bar high on every single and tiny detail adding so much visually. All of that gives kids what they love and adults a moment to be a kid again.

Gather up the kids and the kids at heart to experience everything TROLLS!

In the end – find your happy place!

QUEEN OF KATWE Brings a Champion to Bluray

queen-bluray

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray and Digital HD from Disney and director Mira Nair is the story of hope, belief, love and family with QUEEN OF KATWE.

Robert Katende (David Oyelowo) is a soccer coach who also teaches the children who live in Kampala, Uganda to play chess. In the slum area of Katwe is Phiona (Madina Nalwanga), a ten-year-old girl who watches the game being played and quickly picks up on the techniques. Katende is amazed at how well she does along with the other children.

Phiona’s mother Nakku (Lupita Nyong’o) is worried about her children. Raising them alone with very little income she is concerned that Katende is filling their heads with big, impossible dreams. Phiona’s brother Brian (Martin Kabanza) and sister Night (Taryn Kyaze) are also troubling Nakku driving a wedge in the family.

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As Katende begins to take his chess group into competitions, it becomes clear these children may be different but talented. Standing out is Phiona who has the dream of one day getting away from the slums of Katwe and creating a life that will make her mother proud.

When her competition chances are shot down, Phiona falls into the belief that she is not meant to live a better life. Sometimes you have to fall before the best of us all can rise!

Nalwanga as Phiona is a tough little girl and she has the expressive face to prove it. She is tough on the outside because she has to be but inside her dreams are just as wonderful. Nalwanga takes this role and makes it believable and amazing.

Oyelowo as Katende is an actor that always seems to embrace roles that are so thoughtful and in QUEEN OF KATWE he once again is riveting to watch. Portraying a man who thought more of others than himself, it is a heartwarming performance.

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Nyong’o as Nakku Harriet is a mother who wants what’s best for her children yet knows the reality of life. Never wanting her children to be disappointed or let down, she shields them but in a way that is detrimental to all of their lives. I enjoyed Nyong’o’s performance as this young mother who tries to believe and is shown how by her children.

Other cast include: Ronald Ssemaganda as Ivan, Ethan Nazario as Benjamin, Nikita Waligwa as Gloria, Edgar Kanyike as Joseph, Esther Tebandeke as Sara Katende and Peter Odeke as Mr. Barumba.

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment began distributing under its own label in 1980 and continues to bring quality programming to kids and kids at heart. Home of the most beloved animated features including SNOW WHITE, PINOCCHIO and SLEEPING BEAUTY to name a few is what keeps families coming back for more. To see what is currently available to add to your own family library please visit. www.movies.disney.com for their At Home titles!

QUEEN OF KATWE is an inspirational film about the success of a young girl who might otherwise have gone unnoticed and also of her struggle and determination. That is what makes this story a perfect Disney film. Watching the family change the way they think, in part because of Katende, is filled with forgiveness that was necessary for them all to succeed.

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The Bluray and Digital HD Bonus Extras include QUEEN OF KATWE: Their Story – Discover the stories behind the people who helped bring the film to life, and how they reflect the vibrant community, culture and spirit it celebrates, A Fork, A Spoon & A Knight – Director Mira Nair’s short film about Robert Katende, a boy who grows up to transform a Ugandan city into a globally renowned chess sanctuary, and In the Studio with Alicia Keys – Go behind the scenes with Alicia Keys for an inspiring look at the recording of her song “Back to Life”.

Also included is Alicia Keys “Back to Life” Lyric Video – Sing along with on-screen lyrics, Young Cardamom & Hab “#1 Spice” Music Video – The Ugandan hip-hop duo bring the flavor in a music video directed by Mira Nair, Audio Commentary with director Mira Nair and Deleted Scenes with introductions by Mira Nair.

In the end – one girl’s triumphant path to becoming a chess champion!

Disney’s PINOCCHIO Brings Memories and Beauty to Bluray for Families!

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Jeri Jacquin

This week on Bluray, DVD and Digital HD from Disney’s Signature Collection is a film that has become one of the most beloved classics in animation with PINOCCHIO!

The story is told by the one and only Jiminy Cricket (voiced by Cliff Edwards) about Geppetto (Christian Rub) is a creative man of many talents. One such talent is creating amazing puppets that almost look real. One such puppet is Pinocchio (Dickie Jones) who Geppetto wishes were a real boy.

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The wish is heard and the Blue Fairy (Evelyn Venable) helps the puppet boy come to life – sort of. Telling Pinocchio that he must prove himself to be “brave, truthful and unselfish” to become a total real boy, the Blue Fairy assigns Jiminy Cricket to be his conscience.

That proves to be a cricket-full when Pinocchio meets Honest John the Fox and Gideon the cat. Believing he is just having fun with his new friends, he has captured the eye of Stromboli. Wanting to make money off the marionette, it becomes clear that when Pinocchio wants to go home that it isn’t going to happen.

Jiminy Cricket calls on the help of the Blue Fairy and when she asks Pinocchio why he is not in school, he lies and with it a nose growth! Promising the Blue Fairy he won’t do it again, she gentle tells him that this will be the last help he receives.

But Honest John and Gideon are still looking for misbehaving lads to take to and they once again meet Pinocchio and talk him into going along. Disaster strikes when Jiminy discovers what really happens to the boys who follow Honest John and Gideon. Escaping to home, Pinocchio and Jiminy Cricket find a letter that Geppetto has gone looking for the marionette boy.

Swallowed by the whale Monstro, Pinocchio jumps into the sea to find Geppetto and although they escape, everything changes in the crash of a wave. It is in this moment that life changes for them all!

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PINOCCHIO first came to the screen in 1940 after the success of SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS. Taken from the Italian children’s story The Adventures of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi it has continued the test of time. Seventy-six years later, this film has captured the imagination of each generation since it’s release.

PINOCCHIO brings through the years other milestones such as being the first animated feature to win an Academy Award for Best Music-Original Score and Best Music-Original Song for ‘When You Wish Upon a Star’. That song alone captures the heart and gives it a special hug because dreams do come true!

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment began distributing under its own label in 1980 and continues to bring quality programming to kids and kids at heart. Home of the most beloved animated features including SNOW WHITE, PINOCCHIO and SLEEPING BEAUTY to name a few is what keeps families coming back for more. To see what is currently available to add to your own family library please visit. www.movies.disney.com for their At Home titles!

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The Bluray includes a Brand New Version of Oswald Short Poor Pappa, the Bonus Extras of The Pinocchio Project: When You Wish Upon a Star – Today’s hottest music influencers create their own version of the iconic song, Walt’s Story Meetings: Pleasure Island – Recently discovered original artwork reveals a Pleasure Island that never made it to the big screen.

Also included is In Walt’s Words: Pinocchio – Through recordings of rare interviews, Walt discusses the magical making of this legendary classic, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit in “Poor Papa” – When the storks bring Oswald’s family a special delivery, his house is soon overrun by a rambunctious brood of baby bunnies and so much more.

This film has made it through four generations of my own family and I have no doubt that it will continue on with my grandchildren’s children. There are so many themes that reach into families with love, trust, learning, mistakes and most of all forgiveness.

Wrapping all of this wonderful story in animation that has been brought to Bluray with a sharpness that is mesmerizing means the legacy that PINOCCHIO brings will continue. This is an absolute must for everyone’s Disney home library!

In the end – when you wish upon a star your dreams come true!

 

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