The Little Mermaid - Disney - Blu-ray 3D and Blu-ray Combo Pack
Director: John Musker, Ron Clements
Cast: Jodi Benson, Pat Carroll, Sam Wright, Kenneth Mars,Buddy Hackett. Full cast + crew
If you're between the age of, say, 25 and 35, chances are you don't even realize just how much you love The Little Mermaid. Of course anyone of any age can love this movie, but if you're of the vintage that grew up with VHS copies of this Disney classic, you're going to get all kinds of warm and fuzzy feelings when you pop in this gorgeous Blu-ray and Ariel starts singing for the first time. And if you happen to be a parent, it's a delight to see that this tale of a young girl with an independent spirit that may be a bit too independent is, indeed, timeless and still enchants people old and young alike.
The 3D is a take-it-or-leave-it kind of experience. It's not the best 3D conversion you're ever going to see. Heck, it's not even the best 3D conversion of a Disney animated movie. It doesn't enhance the experience any, but if 3D is your thing, then you have the option here. For everyone else, you may as well just stick with the 2D Blu-ray combo pack.
Special Features: "@DisneyAnimation" (11 minutes), a short but sweet featurette about the inspirations for the movie; "Under the Scene" (13 minutes), a special on the old school animation techniques that went in to crafting the style of the film; "Howard's Lecture" (16 minutes), a look back at the life of Howard Ashman, one of the men responsible for the film's music, who died two years after its release; "Deleted Character: Harold the Merman" (two minutes), just a quick look at a character that didn't wind up in the final film; "Part of Her World" (five minutes), a catch up with singer Jodi Benson as she visits Disney World; "Crab-e-Oke Sing Along" (16 minutes), let's you do a sing along with all of the film's songs; Carly Rae Jepsen's cover of "Part of Your World" (it's actually not terrible and kind of spunky).
Other Notable New Releases
The Croods is, to date, the best animated film of 2013, and considering what's still left to come out, it's unlikely it'll be topped by the end of the year. And yes, that's mighty surprising considering the trailers for this DreamWorks Animated movie about a family of cave people exploring the world for the first time looked like a weird hybrid of The Flinstones and Land of the Lost. The reality is that this is an affecting, wonderful film about family, and it happens to feature some of the most impressive animation of the year (yes, even over Monsters University). It occasionally spends a bit too much time with some slapstick humor, but when it's not having the Croods beat up on each other with caveman glee, it's a smart, wondrous film that'll play best to tight-nit families.
The rest of this week's releases, however, are not so family friendly. First up is the raucous and magnificently R-rated comedy This Is the End, which features some of the best funny people in the business dying in horrible, hilarious ways. Then there's Fright Night 2, which is not actually a sequel to the 2011 Fright Night. This is more like a second remake of the original '80s flick about a student who suspects there's a vampire next door. It's the same characters and same story, but it's set in Eastern Europe and involves students studying abroad. It's actually not half bad, either. It's a bit too long, but it actually does some pretty gnarly things with its vampire and gore, so if you're a fan of either of those things, it is worth checking out.
Also out this week is the Australian horror comedy 100 Bloody Acres (which I haven't seen but have heard good things about) and The Frozen Ground, a thriller starring John Cusack and Nicolas Cage.
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