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    Star Wars Rebels: Complete Season One (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on September 8th, 2015

    The Star Wars universe is famously vast, and that’s before the Force even Awakens this Christmas and kicks off a new series of feature films. (And let’s not even go down the Expanded Universe rabbit hole.) My point is that it’s been almost 40 years since Star Wars premiered, and the army of artists who have taken on George Lucas’ iconic creations haven’t even come close to running out of material to explore. Disney XD’s Star Wars Rebels is an engaging, thoroughly zippy entry that is likely to entertain its intended young target audience along with those who have been obsessed with the Force since a long time ago.
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    Lego DC Comics Superheroes: Justice League — Attack of the Legion of Doom! (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on August 25th, 2015

    DC Comics buffs have been obsessively analyzing every frame of the latest Batman v. Superman trailer for clues that nod to a live-action appearance by their favorite hero. But for fans of Lego’s “DC Comics Superheroes” brand — which includes various movies, TV shows and videogames — the idea of a superpowered team-up is old hat. In fact, Lego is so far ahead of the curve that its newest offering — Attack of the Legion of Doom! — explores what happens when the bad guys form their own all-star team.
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    Penguins of Madagascar (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on March 26th, 2015

    “Antarctica, an inhospitable wasteland, but even here, on the Earth’s frozen bottom, we find life. And not just any life: penguins. Joyous, frolicking, waddling, cute and cuddly life. Look at them, tumbling onto their chubby bum bums. Who could take these frisky snow-clowns… seriously?”

    This one has been a long time coming. I like the Madagascar movies and have been fairly positive about them in these pages. Each time I pointed out that the highlight of these films were the antics of those military-minded penguins and their grand schemes.
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    101 Dalmatians: Diamond Edition (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Athena on February 11th, 2015

    Athena here. That’s right, I’m the Siberian Husky that kind of runs things here at Gino’s house. Since I did such a great job doing the review on Snow Dogs, I decided to step in when I saw Gino watching yet another dog film. This time it was Walt Disney’s classic 101 Dalmatians. Naturally the film would have been better if it had been called 101 Siberian Huskies, but unfortunately the film was based on a popular children’s book by Dodie Smith who happened to have Dalmatians herself, so let’s not blame her; she didn’t know any better. Walt Disney himself discovered the story and took a personal interest in having it made into an animated film. 
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    Nocturna (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Brent Lorentson on November 24th, 2014

    As adults we somewhat have a better understanding of how our dreams work and understand that those fears of the dark when we were children were somewhat silly in retrospect.  But when we were kids, the nighttime was a mysterious time that held so many possibilities, where the magic in the world around us was something that was very real for us all.  In the new Spanish language animated feature Nocturna, the first-time filmmakers (Adria Garcia & Victor Madonado) seem to have tapped into that childlike wonder and have crafted a film that I simply adore.
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    Patema Inverted (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Brent Lorentson on November 17th, 2014

    I’m not the biggest fan of Japanese animation. I don’t think it’s awful or anything, but animation is one of those things where I’m just picky about what I like.  Though I can say I am a big fan of Hayao Miyazaki (Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke) and most of his work.  I think this is worth mentioning, because though I may not be as well-versed in this genre, I’d like to feel I still go into it with an open mind, and I’m always excited to find a title that excites me that I never saw coming.  And that it precisely what Patema Inverted did.
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    Planes Fire and Rescue (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Delia on November 7th, 2014

    Flying into home entertainment, the animated comedy adventure Planes: Fire & Rescue delivers a fun film for the whole family.  The film features some of the characters from the original and a whole lot of new ones.  Brightly animated, having fine direction and with a new storyline, the film has several good values including heroism and friendship. In this episode we find Dusty Crophopper returning from his around-the-world racing tour and about to participate in annual Corn Festival.
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    “31 Nights of Terror” A Letter to Momo (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on October 29th, 2014

    As the spookiest holiday of the year draws closer, we’re all probably a little more sensitive to anything that goes bump in the night. Almost every creature associated with Halloween is meant to terrify us, but what if some of those horrific-looking monsters were actually tasked with watching over us? In the Japanese animated drama A Letter to Momo, a young girl encounters a trio of mischievous spirits that only she can see and hear. The monster shenanigans, however, were merely one aspect in what turned out to be one of the more affecting family films I’ve seen this year.
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    Sleeping Beauty: Diamond Edition (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Archive Authors on October 9th, 2014

    By John Delia

    Most every child knows the story of Disney’s Sleeping Beauty from early video, books and DVD.  Unless you went to see the movie at a theater back in the 1959, however, you probably saw a version that was not crisp and colorful. Finally, after what seems forever, the family animated fantasy has been Blu-ray remastered and digitally restored in super widescreen. The Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD have new bonus features and include the DVD release’s special extras as well.
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    South Park: Season 17 (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on September 18th, 2014

    “Oh boy, zombie apocalypse!”

    No, it’s just South Park. But it has invaded pop culture as much as zombies have over its amazing 18-year run. Trey Parker and Matt Stone have been walking a tightrope for over 18 years now, and it just doesn’t get old. One of the reasons the show doesn’t grow stale is their ability to make such a quick turnaround on current events.
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    Heavenly Sword (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on September 4th, 2014

    The list of bad videogame movie adaptations is as ridiculously long as the titular weapon in this animated offering. In fact, the film that has best captured the spirit of gaming wasn’t even based on an actual videogame. The bottom line is it’s hard to translate the highly-interactive thrills of videogames into a satisfying, relatively passive moviegoing experience. So maybe the answer lies in targeting inherently cinematic games like Heavenly Sword.
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    Rio 2 (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on July 17th, 2014

    “Who cares about a bunch of birds?”

    Well, judging by the fact that the original Rio grossed $484 million worldwide, it seems more than a few people were invested. The avian adventure from Blue Sky Studios may not have soared as high as Disney/Pixar or DreamWorks Animation’s best efforts — or even Blue Sky’s own Ice Age juggernaut — but it proved to be a dazzling, lucrative diversion in the spring of 2011. This charming sequel, which arrived almost three years to the day later and grossed a near-identical $487 million worldwide, retains the disposable, toe-tapping charm of its predecessor.
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    Ernest & Celestine (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on June 22nd, 2014

    “A mouse can only be friends with a bear in a fairy tale.”

    And that’s exactly what we have here. Ernest And Celestine is a charming little tale told through a wonderful watercolor world of animation. It certainly looks very much like the storybooks I remember reading from as a small child. Indeed, the film is based on a series of book from Belgian artist Gabrielle Vincent. The first book appeared in 1981 and continued for 20 years, delighting children the world over. As an artist it makes some sense that the books had a very unique visual style
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    The Lego Movie: Everything is Awesome Edition (Blu-ray 3D)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by John Ceballos on June 17th, 2014

    “You are the most talented, most interesting, and most extraordinary person in the universe. And you are capable of amazing things.”

    There’s a worthwhile message in The LEGO Movie about the importance of deviating from life’s instruction book and indulging your imagination. But for me, the biggest thrill came from the way it became the first film without Toy Story in its title to tap into the anarchic (and anachronistic) spirit of playing with toys.
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    Son of Batman (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Brent Lorentson on May 5th, 2014

    When it comes to the feud between Marvel and DC film adaptions, I think we can all agree Marvel at this point may be winning the battles on the big screen, but when it comes to the animated films DC has been delivering hit after hit. Perhaps it’s because the landscape in animation is virtually unlimited and comes with a significantly smaller price tag to deliver.
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    War of the Worlds-Goliath (Blu-Ray 3D)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Brent Lorentson on April 4th, 2014

    The H.G. Wells invasion story has been told numerous times from a radio show when it allegedly caused a panic when Orson Wells made his infamous broadcast to the more recent imaging brought to the screen by Steven Spielberg.  It’s the alien invasion story that has captured our imagination and will continue doing so for decades to come.  In the new 3D animated release of War of the Worlds: Goliath, the tale of science fiction is simply the jumping-off point to a new and bigger story about the war that was waged between man and those from outer space.
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    Frozen (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on March 19th, 2014

    “Beautiful. Powerful. Dangerous. Cold. Ice has a magic that can’t be controlled.”

    Like the very best that Disney has offered over the decades, Frozen has its roots in a very old classic fairy tale. Walt himself was interested in doing the Hans Christian Andersen story The Ice Queen immediately following Snow White And The Seven Dwarves. The film was given a production number along with some brief notes. Nothing else remains of the idea
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    Jeff Dunham’s Achmed Saves America: The Animated Movie (Blu-Ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Michael Durr on March 16th, 2014

    Jeff Dunham has always had a talent for making people laugh. His style of ventriloquism has found its way into millions of homes and probably a billion YouTube views. Of course these standup specials have translated into tons of merchandising potential such as lunchboxes, t-shirts, and even the puppets turned into cute and sometimes furry stuffed dolls. Well, with one of the most beloved characters, Achmed, they decided to do an animated special. Let us see how well it turned out.
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    The Jungle Book (Diamond Edition) (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on February 11th, 2014

    There are two very distinctive schools of thought about Walt Disney’s The Jungle Book. There are the Kipling fanatics who have never forgiven Disney for taking a story considered sacred in literary circles and creating something that honestly bears (pardon the pun) little resemblance to the original work. These folks rightfully point out that the story contains almost nothing recognizable about the story and characters from Kipling’s beloved classic. I have often condemned projects that take names like The Night Stalker and Battlestar Galactica and create a vision incompatible with the traditions I associate with them.
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    Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 (Blu-ray 3D)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on January 29th, 2014

    “My name is Flint Lockwood. My whole life I always wanted to be a great inventor just like my hero. It was like Chester V. was speaking directly to me using the language of science.”

    In 2009 Sony Pictures had finally learned to use the language of science when it comes to the world of animation. I’m talking the computer-animated feature film.  Of course, they’ve been in the game for a while, but it was with the release of Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs that this reviewer believes they delivered on the kinds of things that Pixar and Dreamworks have been delivering
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    Futurama Vol. 8 (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on December 25th, 2013

    Futurama was the brainchild of Simpson veterans Matt Groening and David X Cohen. With the growing popularity of their iconic cartoon, it was no surprise that Fox would tap the team to bring another show to the network. When Futurama premiered in 1999, it was a combination of The Jetsons and The Simpsons. That would be ironic for those of us who think the Simpsons theme is a direct knockoff of The Jetsons. It was 1000 years in the future, and the joke was that no matter how much things changed, they hadn’t really changed at all. The space-age series would use many of the writing and art team from The Simpsons.
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    The Simpsons: The Sixteenth Season (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on December 10th, 2013

    “Homer Simpson, it’s time you got what’s coming to you.”

    What’s been a long time coming is bringing television’s longest ongoing scripted series to high definition and Blu-ray. There’s so many seasons that it’s going to take some time to get there. While the recent years are now coming out on Blu-ray, Fox has been working hard to get some of the older seasons up to speed. It’s time for season 16.
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    Bubble Guppies/Team Umizoomi: Into the Snow We Go!

    Posted in Disc Reviews by William O'Donnell on November 21st, 2013

    Nickelodeon has released a Holiday compilation DVD before(http://upcomingdiscs.com/2011/11/15/nickelodeon-favorites-merry-christmas/) which makes this particular release a sort of sequel to that. This time around only two shows are featured, and there is half the episodes featured than in the previous release.
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    It’s a Spongebob Christmas!

    Posted in Disc Reviews by William O'Donnell on November 21st, 2013

    It was inevitable. Spongebob Squarepants gets its own Christmas Special. Usually television shows take the lazy route and inject their own characters into a familiar Christmas story and make a parody or adaptation (how many times have we seen Charles Dickens A Christmas Carol redone?). Thankfully this special offers a unique tale of the malevolent Plankton creating a special fruitcake that turns any eater into a totally jerk. Will Spongebob’s demeanour make him immune? Of course…but what of the rest of Bikini Bottom?
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    Monsters University (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on October 29th, 2013

    The boys are back, and I only have one question. What the heck took so long? I have a lot of respect for Pixar and the groundbreaking films they’ve created over the last couple of decades, but I have to question someone’s marketing good sense when they get a sequel to Cars out before anyone bothered to look towards what is arguably the studio’s best creation to date. For me it’s all about Monsters, Inc. I hadn’t fallen so hard for an animated film since The Lion King, and so I was thrilled when I got the invitation to graduate early from Monsters University.
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