Movie Blu-ray and DVDs for Dad, TV Blu-ray and DVDs for Dad, Blu-ray and DVD for Father's Day
June 8, 2012
Stuff to Buy Channel / Bullz-Eye Home
Movies and television shows on Blu-ray always make great gifts, as you can give your dad something that you know he’ll enjoy. Although everyone has different tastes, here are a few suggestions that should go over well with just about any man.
Any discussion of the best show on television has to start with “Breaking Bad.” We’ve ranked it #1 in our TV power rankings
, and Season 4 may have been the best yet. As Will Harris said in his review, “Series creator Vince Gilligan has probably lost count of how many times he, star Bryan Cranston, and virtually every TV critic in the world has recited back his stock line about how he’s taking the character of Walter White on a journey from Mr. Chips to Scarface. At the end of the third season
, Walt crossed the point of no return, making Season Four a highly disconcerting journey into the depths to which Walt is willing to sink to keep himself and his family safe.” The epic battle between Walt and Gus Fring (Giancarlo Esposito) dominates the storyline, and the ending still has fans talking. Check out our Breaking Bad Fan Hub
and our blog
for more on this memorable series, and put this classic on your gift list.
Forget about "Boardwalk Empire" or "Luck," because "Game of Thrones" is hands down HBO's best new series. Based on George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire novels, "Game of Thrones
" is exactly the kind of fantasy epic that you'd never expect to see produced on this scale for television. The scope of the series is massive (from its large cast of characters, to its gorgeous landscapes, to its incredibly detailed production design) and the acting is all top-notch as well, particularly screen veteran Sean Bean as Eddard Stark, newcomer Kit Harington as Ned's bastard son Jon Snow, and Peter Dinklage in his Emmy and Golden Globe-winning role as the perpetually entertaining Tyrion Lannister. The show has it all – drama, comedy, action, suspense – and the fact that it's so faithfully adapted from Martin's source material is just the cherry on top of what is an already very delicious fantasy sundae. The only thing negative to say about "Game of Thrones" is that the first season is only comprised of 10 episodes, because you can never have too much of a show this good.
Fans of Stephen Moffat and Mark Gatiss' modern-day update of Sherlock Holmes have had to endure an agonizingly long wait between seasons, but we think most people would agree that it was well worth it, because "Sherlock" is every bit as good (and perhaps even better) in its second year. Part of that likely has to do with Moffat and Gatiss choosing to adapt arguably the three most popular stories in Sherlock Holmes canon. Though we've never been particularly fond of the oft-filmed "The Hounds of Baskerville," the two movies that bookend it – "A Scandal in Belgravia" and "The Reichenbach Fall" – are nothing short of perfect, featuring a pair of magnetic performances by Lara Pulver (as the sexy and smart femme fatal Irene Adler) and Andrew Scott, whose deliciously twisted Moriarty is one for the ages. Of course, Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman are still very much the heartbeat of "Sherlock," because no matter how clever the writing may be, the show wouldn't work as well as it does if it weren't for the chemistry between its two leading men.
Though we weren't that impressed by Nicolas Winding Refn's previous films, they have an undeniable visual flair and originality that you don't see very often. "Drive" takes those qualities and applies them to a conventional Hollywood thriller, resulting in a movie that feels much more mainstream without abandoning Refn's art house sensibilities. The film is as beautifully poetic as it is strikingly violent, while Ryan Gosling has never been better as the soft-spoken yet brutally intense protagonist. For as much attention as the film's graphic violence has received, however, it's the opening sequence – an edge-of-your-seat car chase packed with tension so thick you could cut it with a knife – that is undoubtedly the biggest highlight. And when a movie can start so brightly and continue to build on it like "Drive" does (thanks in part to great supporting performances from Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston and Albert Brooks), it's no wonder why so many people love this film.
With the exception of Disney's "The Mighty Ducks" series, "Slap Shot" and a handful of other films, hockey has been inadequately represented by Hollywood compared to most sports, which is probably why "Goon" is such a welcome treat. Though the Michael Dowse-directed comedy is a fairly average underdog story in most respects, it's still one of the best sports films in recent years. Seann William Scott has never had a better role than that of bouncer turned hockey enforcer Doug Glatt, and his understated performance is a big reason why the movie works as well as it does. In fact, most of the cast is excellent throughout, including Liev Schreiber as a fellow enforcer nearing retirement, the divine Alison Pill as Doug's awkward but sweet love interest, and Kim Coates as the no-nonsense coach who recruits Doug for his special talents. Speaking of which, the fight scenes are awesome, delivering plenty of blood and laughs with every blow. And if you didn't know much about hockey goons before, you'll have a newfound respect for them by the time it's over.
The trailers for Joe Carnahan's survival thriller may have promised one thing (namely, a showdown between Liam Neeson and a big bad wolf) and delivered something else entirely, but it's still a solid adventure film with plenty of action. Though you pretty much know how it's going to end as soon as the first few guys succumb to the deadly triumvirate of the punishing weather, dangerous terrain and hungry predators, Carnahan manages to hold your interest by taking the time to develop his characters, humanizing them beyond simple wolf fodder. Neeson and character actor Frank Grillo, in particular, deliver some really strong performances, with the latter even managing to outshine his co-star. "The Grey" can get a bit too philosophical at times when you'd rather just watch Neeson punch a wolf in the face, but while that would have certainly delivered the kind of instant adrenaline rush we all expected, it's the bleak realism of the movie that stays with you long after it's finished.
It's pretty hard to believe that Roman Polanski's "Chinatown" almost went home empty-handed at the 1975 Academy Awards (it ended up winning Best Original Screenplay), because it's not only one of the best film noirs ever made, but it's an American classic. Then again, when you take into account that it was going up against "The Godfather: Part II" in almost every category, it doesn't sound so blasphemous, even if both movies lost major awards to other competition. Perhaps even stranger than its lack of Oscar love, however, is how long it took for "Chinatown" to finally be released on Blu-ray. The movie has hardly aged at all, and it's only that much more evident while watching the new high-def transfer, which looks gorgeous. Though it's hard to discuss the movie without sounding like a broken record, "Chinatown" remains one of Polanski's finest films and features arguably the best performance of Jack Nicholson's career.
Mel Gibson may not be the most popular guy in Hollywood these days with his repeated barrages of controversial statements, but he’s always had a knack for making movies that guys love. With the “Lethal Weapon” series, Mel as Martin Riggs was a part of the ultimate buddy cop team with Danny Glover as Roger Murtaugh. The new Lethal Weapon Collection has all four movies on Blu-ray with over two hours of bonus content, including director commentaries for all four films. It’s the ultimate collection for the action fan on your gift list.
This epic western from 1970 was recently released on Blu-ray and represents one of Dustin Hoffman’s best roles. Hoffman plays 121-year-old Jack Crabb who looks back on his amazing life, or at least the tall tales he’s created about his life. His claims include having been adopted by the Cheyenne Indians and reared in their culture. He claimed to be an associate of Wild Bill Hickok and then tells about being a scout for General George Custer. Crabb’s stories are hilarious and Richard Mulligan delivers a memorable performance as General Custer.