CATEGORIES DVDsOh 'Mamma Mia!' Yes, that fabulous musical starring Meryl Streep, Pierce Brosnan, Colin Firth, Stellan Skarsgard, Christine Baranski and Julie Walters is back again just in time for holiday gift giving. And don't forget to scare the little ones with a Blu-ray disc version of 'Monsters,Inc.' 'Mamma Mia!' The Movie: Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! More Gift Set
Why the Re-Release? This is the ultimate feel-good chick flick: all singing, all dancing, all romance. But unlike other such films, this one crossed over to male audiences as well, earning some $144 million in North America and £69 million in Britain, making it the highest-grossing movie ever to be released in the U.K., usurping 'Titanic's' decade-long hold on the record. Universal released the film to DVD last December, but with this year's holiday season fast approaching, they decided to push out this special edition gift set for the films aficionados. In both standard and Blu-ray editions.
New Special Features: This nicely packaged two-disc special edition also includes the complete CD soundtrack and an exclusive 32-page book (with photos and details about the making of the film). Bonus features include: 'Sing-Along' on-screen lyrics for 22 musical numbers; deleted musical number 'The Name of the Game'; commentary by director Phyllida Lloyd; six featurettes; "'Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!' music video; deleted scenes and outtakes. The Blu-ray version adds BD-Live (My Chat, My Scenes, My Commentary) and U-Control (picture-in-picture and behind-the -hits) functions.
Is It Worth Upgrading? For fans of Abba and 'Mamma Mia! this upgrade is a no-brainer: it's just brimming with goodies. And it will make a great holiday present for that special fan on your shopping list.
Why the Re-Release? It's been seven years since the 2001 Disney film made its way to DVD in a special edition, and it's about time that the folks at Disney spruced up this wonderful animated film. Here they give it the Blu-ray treatment as well as packing it with a standard DVD copy and "DisneyFile Digital Copy" for use on portable devices.
New Special Features: Not a heck of a lot of new material on the Blu-ray version. There's a 'Filmmaker's Round Table' in which the filmmakers reflect on the creation of the film; a tour of the new attraction in Tokyo Disneyland 'Ride and Go Seek: Building Monstropolis in Japan'; 'Roz's 100-Door Challenge' interactive game; BD-Live features' plus all the original DVD bonus features, including 'Pixar Fun Factory Tour,' 'Banished Concepts' and more.
Is It Worth Upgrading? If you're happy with your standard copy of 'Monsters, Inc.,' keep the closet door shut; there's nothing here new for you. But if you have (or are anticipating getting) a Blu-ray player, this set will be a perfect addition to your growing collection. The film looks unbelievable in hi-def and the (original) extras give added value to the purchase.
Other Notable Blu-ray Releases:
Heat (1995) is director Michael Mann's best big-screen outing. It's a violent, sizzling, fast-paced caper film (with a great shoot-out in downtown Los Angeles) that teams Al Pacino and Robert De Niro (on opposite sides of the law) and throws in Val Kilmer, Jon Voight, Tom Sizemore, Diane Venora, Amy Brenneman, Ashley Judd, Mykelti Williamson, Wes Studi, Ted Levine, Dennis Haysbert, William Fichtner and Natalie Portman for good measure. From Warner.
Godzilla (1998), directed by Roland Emmerich ('2012') and starring Mathew Broderick, Jean Reno, Hank Azaria, Michael Lerner, Harry Shearer, Kevin Dunn and Arabella Field. Though the story line left much to be desired, we fell in love with the modern FX implementation of Godzilla. There's also a nice assortment of bonus features to keep you happy for hours. From Sony.