This week’s home entertainment offerings include the final controversial season of Game of Thrones (plus a Collector’s Edition of the entire series), along with the 19th season of The Simpsons, a new Blu-ray of the complete Teen Titans animated series, the socially conscious (and well-reviewed) horror film Ready or Not, and for those who enjoy Studio Ghilbi-like films, the delightful Mai Mai Miracle.
TV on DVD
This week’s top release is Game of Thrones: Season 8
(HBO $59.99, BD $74.99, 4K $74.99), the final season of the hugely popular fantasy series based on the fantasy novel series by George R.R. Martin. While Season 8
was without doubt the most controversial of the series’ entire run, it remains the capstone of the most popular TV series of the decade—and just in time for holiday gift-giving comes the Game of Thrones: The Complete Series Collector’s Edition
(HBO, BD $329.99), a massive 33-disc collection that comes in a deluxe souvenir case.
There are several animated releases of interest this week led by The Simpsons: Season 19
(Fox, 438 min., $49.98), which collects the latest episodes of what remains the best cartoon series in the history of network television; Teen Titans: The Complete Series
(Warner Bros., 1,541 min., BD $47.99), which contains a high-def version of all five seasons (65 episodes) of the Cartoon Network series that original aired from 2003-2006 along with the Teen Titans in Tokyo
TV movie; and the single-disc How to Train Your Dragon Homecoming Special
(Universal, 22 min., $14.96), a brand new adventure based on the HTTYD
The only other series of interest is the 1990s Boston-set crime drama, City on Hill: Season 1
(Showtime, 516 min., $39.98), which was created by Ben Affleck and stars Kevin Bacon and Aldis Hodge, and has been renewed for a second season on the Showtime cable network.
The only offerings of interest this week are: Matt Bettinelli’s critically-acclaimed (88% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes), socially-conscious slasher film Ready or Not
(Fox, “R,” $29.98, BD $34.98) in which a bride discovers a deadly secret about the violent proclivities of her new husband’s rich family: and Patrick Wang’s A Bread Factory
(Grasshopper Films, “Not Rated,” 242 min., $34.98, BD $39.98), which actually includes two films featuring a remarkable ensemble cast in a pair of slow-building indie comedies that contain both homespun humor and wild artistic ambition in their meandering, but entertaining, tales of a small town arts center and the people who make all the “magic” happen.
This week’s new anime releases include the Meiji Tokyo Renka Complete Collection
(Funimation, 300 min. BD $64.98), a “reverse harem” saga based on a visual novel about a high school girl who is transported back to the Meiji era (1868-1912) Tokyo where her ability to see spirits makes her a hit with a number of historical figures, who want to make use of her singular talent; and the subtitles-only Seven Senses of the Reunion: Complete Collection
(Sentai Filmworks, 300 min., Subtitles Only, BD $59.99), a 2018 12-episode 2018 series from Lerche that is based on the light novels by Noritake Tao about a “live-in” MMORPG in which a girl dies forcing the shutdown of the game, but when a new version of the game is back online the missing girl is back, though apparently just in digital form.
For those who enjoy the sensitive coming-of-age films from Studio Ghibli there is Mai Mai Miracle
(Right Stuf, 95 min., BD $26.99), a 2009 feature directed by Sunao Katabuchi (Black Lagoon
) and based on the novelization of a memoir by Nobuko Takagi about growing up in a small Japanese village in the 1950s with her head filled with her grandfather’s tales of what life was like in the village 1000 years ago. Can this wildly imaginative girl help her new friend who is harboring a big secret?
For those who enjoy fantasy anime there is Chain Chronicle: The Light of Haecceitas Complete Series + 3 Movies (Funimation, 565 min., BD $64.98), which collects 3 anime movies (from 2016 and 2017) along with a 12-episode TV anime from 2017 based on the tower defense roleplaying game developed by Sega.