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DVDCORNER’S 2014 HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE

Frozen Blu-ray RiffTrax- The Guy From Harlem DVD Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla-Godzilla, Mothra, King Ghidorah- Giant Monsters All-Out Attack Blu-ray Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles- The Ultimate Visual History Book Snowpiercer Blu-ray

With Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Small Business Saturday, and any number of other sales fast approaching, people are once again clamoring for gift ideas. As is the tradition here at DVDCORNER, I have gathered together a list of Blu-rays, DVDs, books, board and card games, toys and, yes, even jewelry that I think people will enjoy. Additionally, I have included sections for “Godzilla” and “Doctor Who” since I reviewed a lot of products from both franchises this year.

While not everything mentioned here was released in 2014, the vast majority were. As such, this list partially doubles as a “Best of 2014” list.

Anyway, enough of my yammering. On with the list!

Mary Poppins Blu-ray          Enemy Blu-ray          Halloween- The Complete Collection Blu-ray Set          Sherlock Season 3 Blu-ray

Blu-rays:

* Mary Poppins- This Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious Blu-ray contains flawless picture/audio quality and a plethora of memorable extra features. Oh, and the movie is pretty great too.

* Frozen- How could I not include one of the most popular films of the past decade? Not only is it bound to be a hot seller, but it’s perfect entertainment for the whole family.

* The Freshman- Silent film fans will adore this Criterion release of comedian Harold Lloyd’s underrated college comedy.

* Sherlock Season 3- Benedict Cumberbatch. Martin Freeman. Sherlock Holmes. Best season. Enough said.

* Halloween: The Complete Collection- Easily the most satisfying home video release of the year. Worth purchasing just for the LONG awaited release of the “Halloween 6 Producer’s Cut” and the rare TV cut of the original 1978 “Halloween” film.

* The Slumber Party Massacre + The Doctor and the Devils (Separate Releases)- Scream Factory (an offshoot of Shout! Factory) has become one of the most treasured home video companies due to their Blu-ray and DVD releases of cult and horror flicks. To me, these woefully underrated films were two of their finest releases of 2014.

* Snowpiercer- If you know a sci-fi fan, there’s no better gift than this thought provoking and visually spectacular post-apoc sci-fi film from director Bong Joon Ho.

* The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad and Fun and Fancy Free- There’s no better bang for your buck than with this set that contains 3 Disney classics. As an added bonus, the beloved “The Reluctant Dragon” is also included here as an extra feature.

* Enemy- This mind boggling love/hate movie will appeal to the art house crowd.

* Kiki’s Delivery Service- Hayao Miyazaki’s timeless classic makes a great present for animation fans of all ages.

* The Herzog Collection- If you needed proof as to why Shout! Factory is one of the best home video companies around, this massive 16 film set devoted to legendary director Werner Herzog is it. Not only does the beautiful book shaped set include Blu-ray editions of bonafide classics like “Aguirre, The Wrath of God,” “Fitzcarraldo,” and, my personal favorite, “My Best Fiend,” but you also get a variety of commentary tracks (including one for “Even Dwarfs Started Small” with Crispin Glover and Herzog himself).

* Inside Llewyn Davis- This folk music centric Coen Brothers film may not be for everyone, but I’m fairly certain the film buff on your shopping list will appreciate this gem of a movie.

* From Here To Eternity- This classic Oscar winning WWII set character drama is a must see for cinephiles. The ensemble cast (comprised of Burt Lancaster, Montgomery Clift, Deborah Kerr, Donna Reed, and Frank Sinatra) is to die for.

* The Sword in the Stone- Disney’s magical animated film about a pre-King Arthur and Merlin has been given a much needed Blu-ray upgrade.

* The Hidden Fortress- Need another Criterion recommendation? How about Akira Kurosawa’s adventurous samurai film that inspired “Star Wars”? This film has everything from well developed characters and an engaging plot to poignant themes and Toshiro Mifune fighting on a horse.

* Last Exile: Fam, The Silver Wing Parts 1 and 2- A visually unique, creative, complex and rich steampunk anime series involving sky pirates, war, politics, aerial action, and a heck of a lot of conflict. These Funimation releases also come with a fair amount of extras (namely commentaries and interviews) so you will certainly get your money’s worth here.

Birdemic 2 The Resurrection DVD          Impractical Jokers- Season 1 DVD          MST3K Volume XXIX DVD          The Wonder Years Season 1 DVD

DVDs:

* Birdemic 2: The Resurrection- The best “so bad it’s good” movie since the first “Birdemic.”

* RiffTrax: Santa’s Village of Madness and RiffTrax: The Guy From Harlem- Few things elicit such joy as a RiffTrax commentary. These two side-splitting discs are some of the finest comedic works from RiffTrax members Mike Nelson, Bill Corbett, and Kevin Murphy.

* Mystery Science Theater 3000 Volume XXIX- While I could have picked any number of recent MST3K sets, this one stands out above the rest thanks to fan favorite episodes like “The Thing That Couldn’t Die” and “The Pumaman.”

* Impractical Jokers- Seasons 1 and 2 (Separate Releases)- If you know someone who appreciates hidden camera and or prank shows, order up these sets of one of the funniest shows currently on television.

* The Wonder Years Season 1 or Complete Series- At long last, one of the best coming of age TV series of all time has hit DVD. Currently, you can purchase a season 1 set (available wherever discs are sold), a season one and two set, or a complete series set (available on the Timelife website).

* Rewind This!- For all of the VHS collectors out there, this lovable documentary is for you.

* The Last Days- A grossly overlooked Spanish post-apocalyptic movie.

An Adventure In Space And Time Blu-ray-DVD Combo Pack          Doctor Who- The Enemy of the World DVD          Doctor Who- Planet of the Spiders DVD          Doctors Revisited Fifth To Eighth DVD

Doctor Who:

* An Adventure in Space and Time Blu-ray- A moving fictional biopic about both the beginning of the “Doctor Who” TV series and William Hartnell’s tenure as the First Doctor.

* Doctor Who Risk: The Dalek Invasion of Earth Board Game- The classic board game “Risk” gets a new look with a “Doctor Who” themed edition. Dalek lovers will especially get a kick out of this one as the game come with a massive amount of little Dalek game pieces.

* Doctor Who: Engines of War Book- Are you bummed that we haven’t seen more of The War Doctor? You don’t have to be! This engrossing book digs into the era of John Hurt’s criminally underrated sort of Doctor. Easily one of the best DW books ever written.

* Doctor Who: The Enemy of the World DVD- The recently recovered Second Doctor era adventure just happens to be one of the best classic era episodes.

* Doctor Who: Planet of the Spiders DVD- Whovians and Jon Pertwee fans will enjoy (and perhaps tear up at) the last action/vehicle packed episode of the Third Doctor era.

* The Doctors Revisited: Fifth To Eighth DVD- Of the 3 Doctors Revisited sets, this one is by far the best as it includes some of the greatest episodes such as “Earthshock,” “Vengeance on Varos,” and “Remembrance of the Daleks.” You can’t go wrong with the bonus features either.

* Star Trek: The Next Generation/Doctor Who: Assimilation2- A “Star Trek”/”Doctor Who” comic book crossover may sound bizarre, but it works like a charm. Check out the IDW hardcover graphic novel release.

The Rocketeer ReAction Figure          The Hobbit- An Unexpected Journey Deck-Building Game          Marvel Legendary Board Game          Star Wars- X-Wing Miniatures Core Set

Toys + Board and Card Games:

* Marvel Dice Masters- This Marvel superhero themed WizKids game is an endlessly replayable board/dice/card game. I recommend picking up an “Avengers vs. X-Men” or an “Uncanny X-Men” starter set as they have everything you need to play an immediate 2 player game with.

* The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Deck-Building Game- With “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” hitting theaters very soon, fans of Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit” film franchise might want to pick up this easy to learn deck-building game to get in the mood for the last installment of “The Hobbit” trilogy.

* ReAction Figures- Funko’s recent line of retro action figures have proven to be a big hit amongst toy collectors. Whether you want an action figure from “Alien,” “The Rocketeer,” “Firefly,” or “Escape From New York,” there are many to choose from.

* Legendary: A Marvel Deck-Building Game- I know I already listed a deck-building game AND a Marvel game, but this thematic deck-building combat game is too good not to mention. If you want more than just the base game, multiple expansions are available as well as a “Legendary Villains” spin-off.

* Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Core Set- An incredibly addicting tactical combat miniatures game. The core set has everything you need for a two-player game. Of course, there are plenty of ships you can purchase outside of the core set to make the game bigger and better.

Star Wars Storyboards- The Original Trilogy Book          Alternative Movie Posters          The Art Of Howl's Moving Castle Book          Star Wars- A New Dawn Book

Books:

* The Art of…Studio Ghibli/Miyazaki Films- If you treasure the cinematic works of Miyazaki or know someone who does, check out the catalogue of Viz Media behind-the-scenes art books that include “The Art of Princess Mononoke,” “The Art of Ponyo,” “The Art of Howl’s Moving Castle,” “The Art of the Wind Rises,” “The Art of My Neighbor Totoro,” “The Art of Spirited Away,” “The Art of Kiki’s Delivery Service,” and “The Art of Porco Rosso.”

* Star Wars Storyboards: The Original Trilogy- The title says it all, folks. “Star Wars: Storyboards: The Prequel trilogy” is also available to purchase as well.

* Hollywood Dogs- A charming oversized coffee table for dog lovers and fans of old Hollywood stars.

* Locke and Key Volumes 1-6- Author Joe Hill has crafted a truly special horror-drama comic book series filled with twists, turns, deep mythos, and rich characters. Essential reading. Note: A set of all 6 volumes is due out Nov. 25th.

* Alternative Movie Posters: Film Art From The Underground- Film lovers, poster collectors, and artists will adore this wonderfully creative book filled with imaginative posters to hundreds of classic films.

* Star Wars: A New Dawn- This “Star Wars” book (that launched the new SW canon) is a great tie-in to the “Star Wars Rebels” animated series.

* Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Ultimate Visual History- TMNT fans will be shouting “Cowabunga!” if they find this in-depth book under the Christmas tree.

* Saga Volumes 1, 2, and 3- One of the best comic book writers in the history of the medium (Brian K. Vaughan) has created yet another must-read sci-fi story.

* Film Noir: 100 All-Time Favorites- For those that can’t get enough of private eyes and femme fatales, this top of the line Taschen book is the ultimate gift. This massive hardcover book offers up a great overview of the film noir genre and provides plenty of interesting factoids about classics (“The Third Man,” “Sunset Boulevard,” and “Blue Velvet”) and overlooked films you might not have heard of such as “Phantom Lady,” “Hangover Square,” and “Posion Ivy.” As an added bonus, there’s even a list of 1,000 film noirs for further film viewing! Basically, it’s an all in one educational film book.

Godzilla vs. The Sea Monster Blu-ray          Godzilla- The Art of Destruction Book          Godzilla 2014 Blu-ray

Godzilla:

* Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster Blu-ray (AKA Ebirah, Horror of the Deep)- While perhaps too cartoony and silly for some, I find this 60’s installment of the Godzilla series to be epic fun.

* Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla/Godzilla, Mothra, and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack Blu-ray- Of all of the 2-pack Blu-ray releases from Sony, this is the very best.

* Godzilla (2014) Blu-ray- As it stands right now, this is my personal favorite film of 2014. A monster movie fan’s dream come true.

* Godzilla: The Art of Destruction Book- A superb companion piece to “Godzilla” (2014) courtesy of Insight Editions.

* Bonus: Gamera Trilogy Blu-ray- When it comes to giant monsters, 2014 may have been dominated by Godzilla, but everyone’s favorite turtle Gamera should not be forgotten. While there is an affordably priced bundle of 11 Gamera films available from Mill Creek Entertainment, your best bet is to go with the uber cheap trilogy set containing the series best entries “Guardian of the Universe,” “Attack of the Legion,” and “Revenge of Iris.” This set also comes with a kaiju sized amount of extras to boot.

Weezer- Everything Will Be Alright In The End Album          Foo Fighters- Sonic Highways

Albums:

* Weezer- Everything Will Be Alright In The End- After a 4 year absence, Weezer returns with what many consider one of their best albums to date. With songs like “Cleopatra” and “Eulogy for a Rock Band,” it’s safe to say this album will be in heavy rotation for anyone who picks it up.

* Foo Fighters- Sonic Highways- I can’t get enough of this song of this 8 song album and the accompanying HBO documentary series. It’s rock music at its best.

Guitar Pendant          Guitar Pendant Ornament

Jewelry:

* Guitar Pendants- I couldn’t end this Gift Guide without plugging these exquisite handmade guitar pendants made by Kathryn. Consumers can purchase one of the guitars on display at Kathryn’s Etsy page (https://www.etsy.com/shop/frenziedsilence) or request a specific guitar pendant (or guitar ornament) to be made.

That’s it for 2014’s Gift Guide. See you next year!

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November 22, 2014 - Posted by | News | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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