New on DVD & Blu-Ray: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, The Hundred-Foot Journey, and More

by | December 2, 2014 | Comments

This week on home video, we’ve got the second installment of the successfully rebooted Planet of the Apes franchise, a feelgood drama from Lasse Hallström, and a claustrophobic found-footage horror film to kick things off. Then, we’ve got a couple of Certified Fresh TV shows, a few indie flicks, a rerelease of a Holiday favorite on DVD, and a newly remastered classic starring Jimmy Stewart. Read on for details:

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes


If you were as disappointed by Tim Burton’s 2001 Planet of the Apes reboot as half the critics were, then 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes probably went a long way toward making you feel better about the future of the franchise. Thanks to glowing reviews and a smartly told origin story, we got part two of the reinvigorated series this year with Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, which finds the human race fighting to survive in the aftermath of a “simian flu” that has wiped out much of humanity while Ceasar (a mo-capped Andy Serkis) and his tribe of intelligent apes flourished in the meantime. Jason Clarke represents a community of San Francisco survivors in search of a power source located in ape territory, and though Ceasar sees benefit in maintaining peace with the humans, an angry chimpanzee named Koba challenges his authority and seeks to eradicate the human threat. Critics raved yet again, sending Dawn to a Certified Fresh 91 percent Tomatometer score in recognition of the film’s intelligent, ambitious, and surprisingly emotional script, as well as its skillful use of immersive visual effects. The Blu-ray comes with a number of featurettes, including a look at the production design, the community of apes, the special effects, and an interview with Andy Serkis, among other things.

The Hundred-Foot Journey


Lasse Hallström has proven in the past that he can make schmaltzy stories work, and though The Hundred-Foot Journey isn’t quite the equivalent of cinematic haute cuisine, critics still thought it was fairly hearty. The film tells the story of Hassan (Manish Dayal), a young Indian ex-pat chef living in France whose family opens an Indian restaurant across the street from a classical French restaurant run by the fierce, calculating Madame Mallory (Helen Mirren). As a feud ensues between the two, Hassan falls for Mme Mallory’s sous chef Marguerite (Charlotte Le Bon), and soon Mme Mallory herself begins to see Hassan’s potential as a fine chef. This is familiar narrative territory — even for Hallström, who helmed the thematically similar Chocolat — but Helen Mirren is a joy to watch, and Hallström knows what he’s doing, so critics awarded it a 67 percent on the Tomatometer. Special features include an interview with producers Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey discussing what drew them to the project, a look at the production design and the transition process from page to screen, and, as a nice little culinary bonus, a little how-to video recipe for coconut chicken.

As Above, So Below


Being trapped underground can be a frightening experience in and of itself, but being trapped underground in the catacombs? You’d think that would add an extra level of freakout to the proceedings. Not so, say the critics, at least not in the case of As Above, So Below, the Paris-set chiller by director/screenwriter duo the Dowdle brothers, who remade the Spanish zombie flick [REC] as Quarantine. As Above follows a group of intrepid explorers who venture into the catacombs of Paris in search of a legendary alchemical catalyst and stumble upon inexplicable supernatural forces. As Above, So Below begins intriguingly enough despite its found footage trappings, say critics, but like many other subpar horror films, it devolves into a barrage of genre clichés executed with little panache. Special features on the release include just one making-of doc.

Also available this week:

  • The Congress (76 percent), starring Robin Wright and Harvey Keitel in a half-animated meta sci-fi drama about an aging actress who agrees to have her image digitally recreated so that she can continue starring in films.
  • Field of Lost Shoes, starring David Arquette and Lauren Holly in a drama about a group of teenagers who are recruited to fight in the Civil War.
  • A Charlie Brown Christmas (92 percent) is getting a new 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition DVD release, which includes the TV special It’s Christmastime Again, Charlie Brown.
  • Season one of the Certified Fresh FX sci-fi series The Strain (87 percent), produced by Guillermo Del Toro, is available.
  • The first season of Comedy Central’s Certified Fresh Broad City (95 percent), starring Abbi Jacobsen and Ilana Glazer as a couple of slackers living in New York, is also available.
  • And finally, Frank Capra’s 1939 classic Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (94 percent), starring Jimmy Stewart as the titular idealist who’s tapped as an interim senator and attempts to take on his corrupt opponents, is getting a 4k remastered Blu-ray with several special features, including a booklet featuring a new essay on the film.

Tag Cloud

romantic comedy science fiction Comedy dc animated MTV YouTube crime thriller OneApp werewolf robots historical drama cancelled TV series Extras Television Academy laika American Society of Cinematographers criterion Reality Competition Rocky adventure Netflix breaking bad President films dramedy blockbuster Black Mirror PBS Opinion hispanic Syfy worst Vudu Valentine's Day Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt doctor who rotten Rock disaster space FXX streaming Amazon Prime 007 IFC Films Marathons Bravo Set visit 71st Emmy Awards Disney streaming service latino cancelled TV shows Chernobyl south america The Arrangement docudrama Schedule Christmas Nickelodeon USA Network Crackle Stephen King Television Critics Association 20th Century Fox Heroines twilight Funimation psycho true crime dragons Winners television cops Marvel Studios Paramount Network FOX period drama GLAAD Acorn TV DC Universe Certified Fresh boxoffice History slashers Sneak Peek quibi hist tv talk child's play Anna Paquin Film Festival transformers Turner Classic Movies harry potter technology Video Games Watching Series Sony Pictures Calendar Podcast 72 Emmy Awards Academy Awards Writers Guild of America Thanksgiving YouTube Red franchise teaser social media Sundance Amazon natural history Amazon Studios PlayStation thriller ABC Biopics Women's History Month spider-man versus Lifetime CMT singing competition GoT Apple TV Plus indiana jones The Walking Dead sag awards Baby Yoda zombie National Geographic WGN Cosplay BBC Election free movies joker Country ESPN Polls and Games miniseries CBS All Access MSNBC chucky Pop Pirates Tubi Pride Month mission: impossible dceu Countdown TCA cancelled television Rom-Com Mindy Kaling LGBTQ Universal reviews Ovation adaptation YA sequel Comic Book concert Drama Binge Guide comiccon Black History Month NYCC Nat Geo ratings cults classics supernatural christmas movies anime WarnerMedia superhero toy story Tarantino Emmys Disney Channel Disney+ Disney Plus The Witch DGA Trivia theme song FX on Hulu Mystery PaleyFest spanish language SundanceTV Kids & Family Superheroe diversity directors vampires YouTube Premium The Purge Martial Arts anthology sports OWN Premiere Dates Awards Tour 2020 dogs Trailer Food Network CBS Photos asian-american Grammys TruTV Action Pop TV New York Comic Con Marvel Best and Worst independent Turner TIFF Freeform San Diego Comic-Con Cartoon Network Spring TV First Look CNN Reality RT21 name the review Pet Sematary cats Hulu crime Mary Poppins Returns children's TV HBO Go obituary stop motion Apple Animation X-Men mutant E! BBC America Peacock Red Carpet Tumblr romance BET blaxploitation Netflix Christmas movies Discovery Channel scary movies hollywood Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Oscars cars video on demand Walt Disney Pictures binge Emmy Nominations Avengers Lucasfilm Lifetime Christmas movies travel Arrowverse zero dark thirty 4/20 canceled TV shows DirecTV Shudder documentaries Creative Arts Emmys aliens all-time Box Office Comics on TV Elton John TV renewals composers Family Nominations halloween rotten movies we love Holidays Summer Paramount satire Shondaland BBC One Film reboot Musical Ghostbusters Spectrum Originals Mary poppins Lionsgate parents MCU Cannes Tomatazos fast and furious BET Awards DC streaming service Holiday Esquire a nightmare on elm street political drama Travel Channel Song of Ice and Fire GIFs Britbox TCM justice league VOD comedies TCA Winter 2020 Western Adult Swim richard e. Grant Hallmark Christmas movies IFC canceled Pixar Sundance TV 2019 unscripted TCA Awards 2015 die hard AMC movies award winner The CW psychological thriller NBC VICE Fox News game of thrones Comedy Central Hear Us Out series HBO Columbia Pictures dark Awards Teen mockumentary based on movie jamie lee curtis SXSW Disney Plus video Star Wars First Reviews Musicals VH1 crime drama Mary Tyler Moore SDCC Disney TV 24 frames documentary 45 Fall TV nature Endgame strong female leads Infographic Amazon Prime Video A&E ghosts Horror Character Guide 2016 2018 spy thriller best festivals Showtime E3 TV Land ABC Family Dark Horse Comics Classic Film Star Trek stoner HBO Max cartoon discovery comics sitcom FX Spike witnail Crunchyroll Starz Superheroes Epix BAFTA Winter TV universal monsters medical drama Masterpiece USA politics movie Toys Brie Larson cancelled indie Fantasy green book news spinoff Music elevated horror Sundance Now Mudbound talk show El Rey Ellie Kemper Trophy Talk LGBT serial killer war kids comic TLC 21st Century Fox book CW Seed RT History TNT Interview stand-up comedy Super Bowl police drama Rocketman Captain marvel emmy awards zombies cinemax Hallmark revenge batman screen actors guild critics casting finale nbcuniversal screenings Apple TV+ Marvel Television facebook TCA 2017 biography Year in Review Logo Sci-Fi cooking golden globes Quiz spain See It Skip It A24 APB game show DC Comics renewed TV shows ITV foreign what to watch crossover Warner Bros. TBS 2017