Exodus: Gods and Kings had the best of intentions especially in the technical departments from costumes, construction and visual effects, but for all the talk and lengthy running time, it all feels empty, void of any interesting actors not to mention some unintentional humor. The Blu-ray release offered by Fox is pretty basic with an OK commentary track and selection of deleted scenes, but little else given the bulk of features were reserved for the 3D Blu-ray combo pack.
Henry V is yet another fine Kenneth Branagh Shakespearian drama with great performances all around including future Dame Judi Dench, Derek Jacobi and Emma Thompson while Christian Bale makes an appearance in one of his early roles. The Blu-ray released by Shout Factory has good audio, merely acceptable video but sadly no features.
American Hustle might be a tad overrated and certainly director David O. Russell took influence from Martin Scorsese and maybe a bit of Oliver Stone in terms of tone and style, but the movie’s success lies squarely on an all-star cast who mostly give great performances headlined by Christian Bale and Amy Adams.
Out of the Furnace never quite took advantage of a tremendous cast, especially Christian Bale, with a story that’s not very compelling and although I get the symbolism Cooper was going for, it didn’t gel for one reason or another. However, is it worth seeing? I don’t think you’ll regret at least giving it a rental as there are some solid performances and a couple truly good scenes.
Howl’s Moving Castle may not be considered one of Miyazaki’s greatest works but I enjoyed the movie for its splendid visuals, interesting storyline and well cast voice actors for both the Japanese and English-dubbed versions. The Blu-ray offered by Buena Vista presented excellent audio and video transfer while the features, albeit lacking, are at least worth one viewing.
This “High-Powered Action Pack” might not have the greatest movies – Equilibrium and The Lookout are the best – but at a low SRP of $30, it comes to $5 per movie and maybe less depending on which store you go to (i.e. Best Buy had it for $10), so if you’ve enjoyed any of these and don’t care about features or average audio/video transfers, then by all means check it out.