New in Home Entertainment – July 24, 2012

New in Home Entertainment

July 24, 2012

Jiro Dreams of Sushi
Rated PG for mild thematic elements and brief language
Available on DVD and Blu-ray
In Japanese with English subtitles

In Tokyo there is an 85-year-old sushi chef named Jiro Ono who owns a 10 seat restaurant in a subway station.  Thought by many to be one of the greatest sushi restaurants in the world, it is the first restaurant of its kind to be awarded the prestigious three-star Michelin Guide rating.  This tasty documentary not only shows why Jiro’s sushi is so highly regarded, but also gives a great life lesson as well.  The theme put forth is that of finding something you love and do it for the rest of your life.  Jiro is a prime example of a man whose work is his passion and he has spent his entire life trying to improve his art.  He could have easily established a set menu and made the same sushi every day, but instead he chooses to grow as a chef while he creates and expands.  Even if you aren’t that big of a fan of sushi, and I’ll admit that I’m just a casual roll eater, you’ll find this film to be delicious diversion and a very entertaining yet moving story.  A

Get the Gringo
Rated R for strong bloody violence, pervasive language, some drug use and sexual situations
Available on DVD and Blu-ray

Even though this Mel Gibson film was highly praised by critics and audiences alike, it never saw the light of day in theaters and instead was subjected to a Direct TV On Demand release followed by this Blu-ray/DVD a few months later.  That is the reality for Gibson for the time being.  But please don’t let that stop you from picking up this little gem of a film about a man who steals millions before being arrested across the border.  Determined to escape from prison and get his money back, Gibson is in rare form as the anti-hero.  This is a really fun picture that will surprise the many folks that will now get the chance to check it out.  A-

Rated PG for thematic elements, brief nudity, language and smoking
Available on DVD and Blu-ray
In Hebrew with English subtitles

If you simply read the synopsis for this Israeli film about two competing father and son Talmud scholars, you wouldn’t think it could possess the elements for a good comedy or get an Oscar nomination, but yet it is a very funny and moving picture with a strong enough narrative to earn an Academy nomination for foreign language film.  This well-executed pic works on many levels providing just the right amount of drama and laughter as well as an intellectual feel with clever writing and directing.  It is enjoyable from start to finish and will serve as a wonderful surprise for the unsuspecting viewer.  A

Star Trek: The Next Generation – Season One

Available on Blu-ray

When most old television shows are re-released on blu-ray, there is seldom a big difference from the original DVD release and the product typically serves as merely a chance for the studio to make a few more bucks.  This new release of Picard and crew though has a wonderful new look as well new HD special features.  I was extremely thankful they chose to present the show in its original 4:3 aspect ratio rather than attempt to fill the screen on the average flat panel set most folks will be watching on.  This was a set done with integrity and respect for the fan, and the fans will certainly be thankful.  The show is still just a less-cheesy version of the original sci-fi classic, but the stories are well-crafted, creative and a fun way to fill up a weekend full of hours.  B+