A trio of eye-popping Blu-ray 3-D documentaries exploring marine life lead these new movies released to home video this week, along with a release of Denzel Washington’s latest Oscar-nominated performance.
“Amazing Ocean 3-D” (Universal/Blu-ray 3-D/Blu-ray, 2013, not rated, $34.98), “Fascination Coral Reef 3-D” (Universal/Blu-ray 3-D, 2013, not rated, $34.98) and “Fascination Coral Reef 3-D: Mysterious Worlds Underwater” (Universal/Blu-ray 3D, 2013, not rated, $34.98). These three documentary shorts (two are 45 minutes; one is 55 minutes) are primarily to entice 3-D television owners, though they can also be viewed on regular Blu-ray players without glasses. Though the narrative drive is not the best, if you’re looking for vivid underwater visuals, these will fit the bill.
“Flight” (Paramount/Blu-ray, 2012; R for drugs, language, sex, nudity; two discs, $39.99; Blu-ray, DVD and digital versions; featurettes). An amazing plane-crash sequence and Denzel Washington’s deserved Oscar-nominated performance highlight this film about a drug- and alcohol-fueled pilot who rescues a free-falling passenger airliner with some amazing flying ability, but then finds his world upside-down when his demons are made public. Unfortunately, Robert Zemeckis’ direction is rather exploitive and more than earns the film’s hard R rating. (Also on DVD, $29.99)
“The Awakening” (Universal/Blu-ray, 2012; R for violence, sex, nudity; $26.98, deleted scenes, featurettes). Better-than-average horror yarn set in 1921 England focuses on a woman (Rebecca Hall) who has made a career of exposing supernatural claims as fraudulent, but who may have met her match when she goes to a boarding school where a boy was supposedly frightened to death by a ghost. (Also on DVD, $19.98)
“To Catch a Dollar: Muhammad Yunus Banks on America” (Shout! 2013, not rated, $19.93, bonus film: “Sixteen Decisions,” featurettes). Engaging documentary about Nobel Peace Prize-winner Muhammad Yunus’ journey to bring his microfinance institution Grameen Bank, which began in Bangladesh and is now in 38 countries, to the United States. The bank strives to help eradicate poverty through microcredit loans. A Sundance Film Festival favorite last year.
“Nobody Walks” (Magnolia, 2012; R for sex, language, drugs; $26.98, deleted scene, shot film, featuretes, trailer). This disappointing effort also played at Sundance last year. A young filmmaker (Olivia Thirlby) takes up residence in the guesthouse of a Hollywood sound designer (John Krasinski), resulting in a relationship that doesn't sit well with his wife (Rosemarie DeWitt). (Also on Blu-ray, $29.98)
“Seven Psychopaths” (Sony, 2012; R for violence, language, sex, nudity, drugs; $30.99, featurettes). Occasionally amusing, constantly profane comic gangster yarn about a Hollywood screenwriter (Colin Farrell) who gets mixed up with a dognapper (Christopher Walken) and his partner (Sam Rockwell), who make the mistake of taking the pet of a crazed thug (Woody Harrelson). (Also on Blu-ray, $35.99)
“Nature Calls” (Magnet, 2012; R for language, sex, nudity; $26.98, featurettes, bloopers, trailer). Sometimes just looking at the cast lets you know what you’re in for, as with this low-brow scouting “comedy” starring Patton Oswalt and Johnny Knoxville. (Also on Blu-ray, $29.98)