Supernatural: Season 3
Manufacturer: WarnerBrothers Brand: Warner Brothers Model: 4979993
Supernatural: The Complete Third Season (DVD)In its third season, “Supernatural” continues taking viewers on a terrifying journey into the world of the unexplained. Brothers Sam and Dean Winchester were raised to be soldiers. Now, as they join other hunters traveling the country to track down the evil fugitives from Hell hiding in the darkest corners of America, they must also battle their internal demons. Experience the thrill ride in year three of “Supernatural.”]]> As far as season cliffhangers go, it's hard to think of one as spectacular--or as insurmountable--as the fate that befalls Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles) at the conclusion of Supernatural's third season, but that's only one of the many high points that await viewers in the course of these 16 episodes. Though the season is shorter (due to the 2007-2008 writers' strike), the overall quality of the episodes, both individually and as a whole, make the season one of the best to date in the show's history. The key to its success is the season's story arc, which has Dean and brother Sam (Jared Padalecki) struggling to continue their quest to fight evil while wrestling with the notion that Dean, who sold his soul to save his brother's life at the end of season 2, has only a year before the forces of darkness come to collect their due. What results is a strong mix of dramatic tension between Ackles and Padalecki (both actors come into their own with their characters in this season) and the more fright-driven fare by which the show has earned its reputation. Adding an intriguing wrinkle to the mix is the arrival of Ruby (Katie Cassidy), a demon who breaks tradition by helping the brothers in their adventures. Though not a fan favorite (and Cassidy herself would be gone by the end of this season, and replaced by Genevieve Cortese in season 4), her character underscored a recurring theme throughout the season--what is the true nature of evil?--which would be echoed in Dean's character development in the fourth and fifth seasons. It's an impressive direction for a series that might've continued down its Monster of the Week path, but instead took a bolder route, with considerable payoffs. The reduced number of episodes also means fewer extras on the five-disc set; instead of full-length commentaries, producer Eric Kripke and the production team contribute "Closer Looks," scene-specific commentaries on seven episodes. They're informative and amusing but lack the degree of information that die-hard Supernatural fans might be seeking. A 7-minute gag reel and a 5-minute tour of the brothers' beloved Impala are amusing but forgettable, as is the 15-minute pilot for Ghostfacers, the reality show hosted by hapless paranormal investigators Ed Zeddmore and Harry Spangler in the episode of the same name. More interesting and informative is From Legends to Reality, a 20-minute featurette on the show's special effects teams, whose work reaches a high-water mark in this season. --Paul Gaita
Supernatural: Season 6 [Blu-ray]
Manufacturer: Warner Home Video Brand: Warner Manufacturing Color: color
The prize: ending the Apocalypse. The price: Sam’s life. Season 5’s horrific finale left Dean alone, as Sam descended into Hell. Now a different man, Dean vows to stop hunting and devote himself to building a family with Lisa and her son Ben. Then, mysteriously, Sam reappears, drawing Dean back into the old life. But Sam’s a different man too. He’s returned without his soul. How the Winchesters confront this greatest challenge yet to their powerful bond is the troubled heart – and soul – of the profound and thrilling 5-Disc, 22-Episode Season 6. As the brothers struggle to reunite, they must also battle deadly supernatural forces. Demons. Angels. Vampires. Shapeshifters. And a terrifying new foe called the Mother of All.
Supernatural: Season 4
Manufacturer: Warner Brand: Warner Manufacturing Model: 5524305
Supernatural: The Complete Fourth Season (DVD)"Years ago, Sam and Dean Winchester lost their mother to a mysterious and demonic supernatural force. Subsequently, their father raised them to be soldiers, teaching them about the paranormal evil that lives in dark corners and on the back roads of America. And he taught them how to kill it. This haunting series follows the Winchester brothers as they travel the lonely and mysterious back roads of the country in their '67 Chevy Impala, hunting down every evil supernatural force they encounter along the way. At the start of the fourth season, Dean has been freed from Hell, but he can't remember how or why, or what happened while he was there. It soon becomes clear that Sam has secrets of his own, including what happened in the four months Dean was gone. As the brothers answer these questions, they also face a dire threat. There are whispers that an evil demon will soon be freed from its prison.]]> When a television series opens its new season with a lead character crawling out of his grave after escaping Hell itself, one cannot help but wonder: how will the rest of the episodes ever follow that? In the case of Supernatural's fourth season, the answer comes from above with the introduction of Misha Collins's Castiel, an angel dispatched to rescue Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles) from infernal torment and reunite him with brother Sam (Jared Padalecki) for a very special mission. That quest--to stop the demonic Lilith from opening the 66 seals required to bring Lucifer to Earth and launch the Apocalypse--forms the backbone of the 22 episodes, which takes some fairly adventurous risks with the core of the show. Chief among these is the rift that deepens between Dean and Sam as they attempt to work together, despite their divergent destinies; also agreeable is the season's tonal shift away from its previous Monster of the Week format (though that's still intact for many episodes) and toward a single, more ambitious story and thematic arc. The sea change deepens the show's drama, intensifies the level of suspense and stakes in each episode, and pushes it several big steps away from its teen-friendly origins. Of course, there's still plenty of the show's trademark irreverence and humor to be found, especially in the clever "Monster Movie," which pits the brothers against a Shapeshifter that takes the form of classic movie fiends, and "The Monster at the End of This Book," where Sam and Dean discover a comic book with plot lines very similar to their own lives. By the time Supernatural's fourth season reaches its cliffhanger ending with "Lucifer Rising" (the title neatly sums up the plot), viewers should be fairly hungering for the next episode--a good sign that a veteran series is still hitting its stride. Extras on the six-disc set include commentary for three episodes: "In the Beginning," with executive producer Eric Kripke and writer Jeremy Carver; "When the Levee Breaks," with director Robert Singer and w...
Supernatural: Season 6
Manufacturer: Warner Home Video Brand: Warner Manufacturing Model: 18867416
The prize: ending the Apocalypse. The price: Sam’s life. Season 5’s horrific finale left Dean alone, as Sam descended into Hell. Now a different man, Dean vows to stop hunting and devote himself to building a family with Lisa and her son Ben. Then, mysteriously, Sam reappears, drawing Dean back into the old life. But Sam’s a different man too. He’s returned without his soul. How the Winchesters confront this greatest challenge yet to their powerful bond is the troubled heart – and soul – of the profound and thrilling 5-Disc, 22-Episode Season 6. As the brothers struggle to reunite, they must also battle deadly supernatural forces. Demons. Angels. Vampires. Shapeshifters. And a terrifying new foe called the Mother of All. Season six of the fantasy-horror-drama series Supernatural continues its almost perverse streak of setting the bar at the end of each season so impossibly high that its successor could never surpass the roadblocks in its path, only to leap over them with the same amount of aplomb, wit, and complexity the program has shown throughout its network run. When audiences last saw the Winchester brothers at the end of season five, Dean (Jensen Ackles) had abandoned hunting demons in favor of family life, while Sam (Jared Padalecki) had apparently lost his battle with Lucifer in the season finale. But as season six reveals, Sam is alive and well, though missing a soul, which makes his subsequent hunts with a reluctant Dean merciless and focused on a plan not entirely understood by either man. As the brothers grapple with shape-shifting infants ("Two and a Half Men"), vampires (the unfortunately titled "Live Free or TwiHard"), leprechauns (Robert Picardo in "Clap Your Hands If You Believe…"), horror icon H.P. Lovecraft ("Let It Bleed"), and a variety of homegrown monstrosities, they discover that Sam's soul is in the possession of the demon Crowley (Mark Sheppard), who is using it to manipulate Sam into locating the souls of Purgatory, which could turn the tide of a civil war raging in Heaven towards Crowley and renegade angel Castiel (Misha Collins). The Winchesters must then stop the infernal duo's scheme before an even greater apocalypse can occur. With such high stakes and grim fates hanging in the balance, it's a wonder that Supernatural can spare a moment for its trademark quirky humor, but such episodes as "The French Mistake," where the brothers arrive in an alternate reality where they assume the identity of Ackles and Padalecki, or the aforementioned "Two and a Half Men," display the producers' knack for combining the lighthearted with the show's trademark depth and darkness. Most impressively, the season sets up Supernatural for a seventh go-round that promises--yet again--to top its predecessors. Extras are again substantive and plentiful, with "Jensen Ackles: A Director's Journey" focusing on the actor's debut as helmer on "Weekend at Bobby's," perhaps the most interesting of the lot, with plenty of behind-the-s...
Legend (2015) (Blu-ray + Digital HD)
Manufacturer: Universal Studios Home Entertainment Brand: UNI DIST CORP. (MCA)
From Academy Award winner Brian Helgeland (L.A. Confidential) comes the true story of London's most notorious gangsters, twins Reggie and Ronnie Kray (Tom Hardy, Mad Max: Fury Road). As the brothers rise through the criminal underworld, Ronnie advances the family business with violence and intimidation while Reggie struggles to go legitimate for local girl Frances Shea (Emily Browning, Sucker Punch). In and out of prison, Ronnie's unpredictable tendencies and the slow disintegration of Reggie's marriage threaten to bring the brothers' empire tumbling to the ground.
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