The “Star Trek” movie sequel has arrived on DVD and Blu-ray this week, hot off its blockbuster box-office success (the seventh biggest hit of 2013 so far).
“Star Trek Into Darkness” (Paramount/Blu-ray, 2013, PG-13, two discs, $39.99, featurettes). This J.J. Abrams sequel to his first “Star Trek” reboot is a fast-moving outer-space adventure with one cliffhanger dilemma after another fired at the audience at breakneck speed, and with a great villain in Benedict Cumberbatch. As such it’s highly entertaining.
The main cast returns and there’s plenty of humor when they squabble, and I enjoyed Chris Pine’s interpretation of Kirk much more than in the first film, which made him far too petulant and angry, to the point that I grew weary of him. In this film, that’s not a problem.
My only complaints are that “Into Darkness” is a remake, which seems unnecessary — “reboot” or a “retread”? And when Leonard Nimoy’s Spock shows up, he seems to be there simply to explain and recap. When that kind of thing happens, there’s something amiss in the narrative.
Still, all that seems like carping since the film moves at such a rapid clip and is so enjoyable. (Also on DVD, $29.99; in a 3D combo pack, $54.99; and a limited-edition 3D combo pack with a phaser, $99.99)
“Wish You Were Here” (eOne, 2013; R for language, drugs, sex, violence; $24.98, featurettes). Australian film has Joel Edgerton and Felicity Price as a couple vacationing in Cambodia with her sister (Teresa Palmer) and the sister’s new boyfriend (Antony Starr). But the couple and sister have come home without the boyfriend, whose disappearance is revealed as time passes and dark secrets come to light.
“Love Is All You Need” (Sony Classics/Blu-ray, 2013; R for sex, nudity, language; $35.99, audio commentary, featurettes). Romantic comedy for the older crowd has Pierce Brosnan and Trine Dyrholm both on their way to Italy for a wedding when they “meet cute,” unaware that he’s the groom’s father and she’s the bride’s mother. He’s recently widowed, she’s just finished a round of cancer treatments; tentative romance ensues. (Also on DVD, $30.99)
“Peeples” (Lionsgate, 2013, PG-13, $19.98, audio commentary, featurette, bloopers). Very broad, vulgar farce has Craig Robinson as the requisite 21st century man-child dating a lawyer (Kerry Washington) who, to say the least, is out of his league. When she goes off to an annual family gathering in the Hamptons, he decides to crash the party and propose, bumping heads with her grumpy, class-conscious father (David Alan Grier). S. Epatha Merkerson and Diahann Carroll are also in the cast; co-produced by Tyler Perry. (Also on Blu-ray, $24.99)
“We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks” (Universal; R for violence, language, sex; $19.98, deleted scenes, featurettes). Documentary examination of the WikiLeaks whistleblower controversy, timed to precede the arrival of the dramatic film about Julian Assange, “The Fifth Estate,” which opens next month.
“Frankenstein’s Army” (Dark Sky/Blu-ray, 2013, R for violence and language, $34.98, featurettes, trailer). Faux documentary in the “found-footage” genre has Russian soldiers during World War II stumbling onto a Nazi lab where Dr. Frankenstein’s great-grandson is trying to create a super race of soldiers but cobbling together gruesome monsters instead. If that description attracts you, no more need be said. (Also on DVD, $27.98)Comment on this story
“The Contractor” (Lionsgate, 2013, PG-13, $26.98, audio commentary, featurette, photo gallery). Veteran movie villain Danny Trejo (“Machete”) stars in this thriller as the title character, a seemingly nice-guy laborer hired to work on a young family’s dream home but who instead disrupts, then threatens their lives.
Chris Hicks is the author of "Has Hollywood Lost Its Mind? A Parent’s Guide to Movie Ratings." His website is www.hicksflicks.com