New to DVD and On Demand Releases for December 20-26
Releasing this week:
"Pan": The saga of "Peter Pan'' has had many screen retellings, but few if any have been as offbeat -- and, it might be argued, misguided -- as director Joe Wright's ("Affliction'') take on the tale. The parentless Peter (Levi Miller) is taken from the London orphanage where he resides to Neverland, where he makes a friend in the Captain Hook-to-be (Garrett Hedlund) and a notable enemy in the pirate Blackbeard (Hugh Jackman, giving the role his typical gusto). As a measure of how different this version is, consider that the buccaneers break into crooning punk-rock songs ... and no, we are not kidding. Rooney Mara plays Tiger Lily in a cast that also include Nonso Anozie ("Zoo''), Amanda Seyfried and Cara Delevingne ("Paper Towns''). DVD extra: "making-of'' documentary. (PG: P, V) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)
"Pawn Sacrifice": One of the most legendary chess showdowns in history is re-created in this fine drama directed by Edward Zwick ("Glory,'' "Legends of the Fall''), as Tobey Maguire and Liev Schreiber ("Ray Donovan'') respectively play Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky. Their 1972 faceoff was more than a game, since it also represented a contest between their nations -- with political pressures coming to bear on both of them. Peter Sarsgaard, Lily Rabe and Michael Stuhlbarg also are in the noteworthy cast, which also includes younger actors playing Fischer in earlier years. (PG-13: AS, P) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)
Also Releasing this week:
"War Room": A martially challenged couple (Priscilla C. Shirer, T.C. Stallings) is affected by a woman (Karen Abercrombie) who inspires them to fight for their family in this faith-based drama, which surprised many industry observers with its strong box-office take on its opening weekend. The man of the household, who has all the external signs of being a success but battles inner demons, has to decide whether he has -- and can do with it -- what it will take to repair the problems and keep his clan intact. DVD extras: "making-of'' documentaries; audio commentary by director Alex Kendrick and producer Stephen Kendrick; deleted scenes. (PG: AS) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)
"Hitman: Agent 47" (Dec. 29): An assassin (Rupert Friend) turns on the agency that wants to utilize his very special DNA to create a brigade of similar killers; Zachary Quinto also stars. (R: AS, P, V)
"The Perfect Guy" (Dec. 29): A woman (Sanaa Lathan) comes to regret getting involved with a stranger (Michael Ealy) who begins stalking her; Morris Chestnut also stars. (PG-13: AS, P, V)
"A Walk in the Woods" (Dec. 29): A travel writer (Robert Redford) tackles the Appalachian Trail with a very dissimilar friend (Nick Nolte). (R: AS, P)
"Sicario" (Jan. 5): Emily Blunt plays an FBI agent trying to dismantle a drug cartel along the U.S.-Mexico border; Benicio Del Toro also stars. (R: AS, P, GV)
"The Martian" (Jan. 12): Presumed dead and left behind by his crew, an astronaut (Matt Damon) struggles to survive on Mars. (PG-13: AS, N, P)
"Everest" (Jan. 19): Climbers on the legendary and potentially lethal mountain end up in the midst of a storm; Jason Clarke stars. (PG-13: P, V)
"Straight Outta Compton" (Jan. 19): The formation and survival of the controversial hip-hop group N.W.A. is dramatized; stars include Aldis Hodge and Paul Giamatti. (R and unrated versions: AS, N, P, V)
TOP 10 DVD RENTALS
(Week ending ending December 6, courtesy of Rentrak Corp.)
1) "Jurassic World"
3) "San Andreas"
4) "Inside Out"
5) "Terminator Genisys"
6) "No Escape"
FAMILY VIEWING GUIDE KEY: AS, adult situations; N, nudity; P, profanity; V, violence; GV, particularly graphic violence.
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