Queen Sugar: The Complete First Season – DVD Review

“Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the DVD I reviewed in this Blog Post. The opinions I share are my own.”

Oprah Winfrey (Greenleaf, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks) and Ava DuVernay (Selma, 13th) have joined forces to bring audiences the powerful and mesmerizing drama, Queen Sugar. This dynamic and engaging series explores the themes of family and race in America in a unique and compelling way that will have you glued to the screen from the first moments of the pilot until the frame of the season one finale. It’s a great series with great characters that never lets up on the drama, the tension, or the realism that is one of the hallmarks of Queen Sugar’s universe.

When the three siblings of the Bordelon family – Nova, Charley, and Ralph – have to cope with the death of their father, they discover that his life’s work, a sugar cane farm, is part of their inheritance. The three must work together, with tensions rising from all sides, to figure out what to do with the sugar cane farm while maintaining and balancing their current life situations.

It is through their common connection to the farm that these three siblings find deeper meaning in their lives, their relationships to one another, and the to the world as a whole. Will they be able to keep their father’s legacy alive while keeping their own world’s in tact?

The three actors who portray the siblings – Rutina Wesley, Dawn-Lyen Gardner, and Kofi Siriboe – have fantastic chemistry on-screen. Their trials and tribulations as brother and sisters are all brought to bare as the raw nerves of their pasts and presents bubble to the surface as they make decisions that could cause upheavals to their lives and their futures.

One of the unique things about Queen Sugar is that all the episodes are directed by a wide range of female directors. This diversity in directing definitely enhances the tone of the series and gives each episode a perspective that it may not have had had a male director been at the helm.

The Season One DVD includes the following special features:

Inside Queen Sugar: Origins

Extraordinary in the Ordinary: Making Queen Sugar

Oprah Winfrey and the Cast of Queen Sugar

Deleted Scenes

If you love family-based drama series, I highly recommend Queen Sugar: The Complete First Season.

Queen Sugar: The Complete First Season is available now on DVD.

What’s your favorite family-based drama series? Leave a comment and let us know!

Major Crimes: The Complete Fifth Season – DVD Review

“Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the DVD I reviewed in this Blog Post. The opinions I share are my own.”

Captain Sharon Raydor and her team at the LAPD are back for more crimes, more confessions, and more drama in season five of the TNT series, Major Crimes. One of the primary reasons this series is so engaging and addictive is its strong ensemble cast that deliver quality performances time and time again. Along with that, the show finds new twists on familiar procedural storylines that help it stand out from being just another cliché-filled police drama.

I also like how the series not only follows the case-of-the-week format but also has a serialized set of storylines that have been part of the show from the pilot. I feel like we know these detectives and their lives outside the walls of LAPD Headquarters, which humanizes them and shows us their flaws, insecurities, and personal sides. In this was we can identify and empathize with them as people and care more about them when danger strikes while they are on the case.

Leading the pack is the always mesmerizing Mary McDonnell (Dances with Wolves, Independence Day), who is a force to be reckoned with as she tirelessly works to solve tougher and more challenging cases each episode. Along with McDonnell, the cast is loaded with a talented roster of performers that include G.W. Bailey (The Closer, Police Academy), Michael Paul Chan (Spy Game, Hawaii Five-O), Raymond Cruz (Breaking Bad, Better Call Saul), Kearran Giovanni (One Life to Live, Designated Survivor), Graham Patrick Martin (Two and a Half Men, The Girl Next Door), Robert Gossett (Arlington Road, NYPD Blue), and Ransford Doherty (Body of Proof, Touch). It’s a great cast with a great chemistry, and it all links back to the series that started it all: The Closer.

Once you start watching this season, it’ll be hard to stop. With so many crimes to solve, mysteries to uncover, twists to reveal, and scum to apprehend, Major Crimes is a crime show fan’s dream come true!

The Season Five DVD includes Deleted Scenes and a Gag Reel.

Whether you’ve been hooked since the beginning or are looking for a new series, I highly recommend Major Crimes: The Complete Fifth Season. It’s great TV!

Major Crimes: The Complete Fifth Season is available May 30, 2017 on DVD!

What’s your favorite crime series ensemble? Leave a comment and let us know?

DC Superhero Girls: Intergalactic Games – DVD Review

“Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the DVD I reviewed in this Blog Post. The opinions I share are my own.”

Supergirl, Batgirl, Bumblebee, Wonder Woman, Harley Quinn and more are back for another girl-powered adventure in DC Superhero Girls: Intergalactic Games! This time, the students of Super Hero High have their hands full when Granny Goodness and the Furies along with some other nefarious ne’er do wells do their best to ruin the fun and spirit of the Games that all the girls have been training for. Will they succeed and take home the gold, or will evil prevail through unscrupulous deeds?

An extension of the TV series of the same name and a sequel to the original DC Superhero Girls movie, Hero of the Year, Intergalactic Games provides plenty of superhero fun centered around a strong female cast of characters that prove that it’s not always male superheroes that can save the day; sometimes a little girl power can do the trick!

DC Superhero Girls: Intergalactic Games is a fun, family-friendly film with plenty of lessons about teamwork, strength of character, and the dangers of cheating. These Super Hero Girls are great role models that have strong senses of self and are confident in who they are and in their abilities not just as superheroes but as young women as well.

DC Superhero Girls: Intergalactic Games Special Features include:

“That’s My Girl” by Fifth Harmony Music Video (DVD only)

Animated Shorts:
– New Beginnings
– Hero of the Month: Supergirl
– Batgirl l vs. Supergirl
– Quinn-tessential Harley
– Doubles Trouble
– Franken-Ivy
– Dude, Where’s My Invisible Jet?

So, get ready to Get You Cape On with DC Superhero Girls: Intergalactic Games! I highly recommend it!

DC Superhero Girls: Intergalactic Games is available now on DVD!

What’s your favorite superhero animated series? Leave a comment and let us know!

Peanuts by Schulz: Go Team Go! – DVD Review

“Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the DVD I reviewed in this Blog Post. The opinions I share are my own.”

Get ready as Snoopy and the gang deliver their patented dry wit and comic strip antics in Peanuts by Schulz: Go Team Go!, the latest incarnation of the beloved comic series. Since 1950, the Peanuts have been delivering laughs via newsprint, animation, and feature films, and Peanuts by Schulz is no exception.

With Peanuts by Schulz: Go Team Go!, Charles Schulz’s comic world is brought to life for a new generation in a fun and energetic style. And like the comics, valuable lessons are learned as Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Linus, Lucy and the rest deal with the trials and tribulations of being a kid, being a friend, being a dog owner, or being a sibling.

What I really liked about the series is the animation design. It looks as if they took Peanuts comic strip panels and animated them, which adds an air of authenticity to the entire series. They even did a fantastic job with the voice casting; every character sounds very similar to the voices featured in the Peanuts specials and films from decades gone by.

Unlike the previous entries into the Peanuts canon, each episode of Peanuts by Schulz: Go Team Go! is split into two different fast-paced stories that will definitely hold your interest since there’s no time wasted over the course of each sequence. Peanuts by Schulz: Go Team Go! is a lot of fun!

No matter your age – if you grew up with them or are just discovering them – the Peanuts gang’s antics can be enjoyed over and over again. These iconic characters have delivered their unique style of comedy and thought-provoking moments for over six decades and there’s no sign of them slowing down.

I highly recommend Peanuts by Schulz: Go Team Go!

Peanuts by Schulz: Go Team Go! is available now on DVD!

Who is your favorite Peanuts character? Leave a comment and let us know!

Animal Kingdom: The Complete First Season – Blu-ray Review

“Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post. The opinions I share are my own.”

Family. Loyalty. Distrust. Chaos. These are just some of the themes that permeate that world of Animal Kingdom. From the very first moments of the pilot to the final minutes of the season finale, you get a true sense that this working-class crime family is a lot like every other family.

Sure, we don’t all prosper from organized crime schemes, robberies, or physical altercations for the sake of monetary or personal gain, but we all have a circle of people whom we are loyal to. A group of people – whether they are family or close friends – with whom we confide, we commiserate, and we oftentimes collide. But no matter the inner turmoil within the circle, when an outside begins to cause problems, the interpersonal issues fade away; and animal instincts take over.

The first season of Animal Kingdom introduces us to the Cody family, led by matriarch Janine (Ellen Barkin) who doesn’t take crap from anyone – including her sons. She’s a tough-as-nails, strong-willed, yet compassionate heroine who can be your best friend one minute and your worst enemy the next. It is through her motherly manipulation that she’s able to control the criminal enterprise she has built with the help of her sons; a group of men with their own sets of issues and behavioral problems.

We initially see the series through “J” (Finn Cole) who is Janine’s grandson. After his mother passes away, he comes to live with the Codys and boy is he in for a surprise! What he thought would be a refuge from the drug-addled and impoverished world he left behind soon becomes a chaotic circus of criminal antics, wild parties, sex-filled debauchery, and gun, explosions, fist fights, and much more. It’s a lot for a 17-year-old to take in, and taking the journey with him is as much exhilarating as it is exhausting.

As for Janine’s four sons, there’s enough personality to go around with some to spare as the Cody boys ramp up the crimes, the violence, and the paranoia as events go from good, to bad, to worse as the family grapples with the potential of getting busted by the cops, impending arrests, and the fear that their empire could be shut down for good.

Animal Kingdom is great TV. It’s dark, edgy, exciting, amusing, and fast-paced. The blu-ray comes with a number of great special features, which include:

Inside Animal Kingdom

Producers and cast provide an inside look.

Animal Kingdom: Stunts

Exciting sports action from surfing to skydiving.

Meet the Codys

Reach into the heart of the diabolical family.

Getting Into Character

Creating the criminally cool characters.

Setting The Stage

Production designer Nina Ruscio and the team reveal the secrets of Smurf’s domain.

Family Comes First

Cast and producers explore Season One’s family dynamics.

Deleted Scenes

If you’re looking for a new series to begin, I highly recommend Animal Kingdom: The Complete First Season! It truly is the Golden Age of Television Drama!

Animal Kingdom is available now on Blu-ray and DVD!

Wolf Creek: Season One – DVD Review

The continent of Australia. Home to some of the world’s deadliest snakes, spiders, and sea creatures, and one very determined serial killer: Mick Taylor. He’s a man with no conscience. A man who kills for pleasure. A man who may have finally met his match in the new series, Wolf Creek. It’s time for Mick’s bad deeds to finally get the punishment they deserve.

A follow-up to the 2005 and 2013 films, Wolf Creek: Season One delivers a gory and suspenseful story of revenge and payback as one of the survivors of Mick Taylor’s lunatic killing sprees decides to hunt down and killer the killer. When her family is brutally killed by Mick during a vacation to the Australian Outback, Eve (Lucy Fry) escapes with a gunshot wound and nothing left to live for but her new desire to take down Australia’s most infamous serial killer. Will her efforts be in vain, or will she succeed at preventing others from falling victim to his violence?

I vividly remember the first Wolf Creek film, specifically a scene where Mick Taylor severs the spinal cord of one of his victims. The image still resonates in my head; from the sound effects to the looks on the faces of both Mick and his victim when her spine is cut clean through (ugh!).

I was happy to see that they were able to cast John Jarratt once again in the titular role of serial killer Mick Taylor. It lends an air of authenticity to the series. I feel if they had had to recast the role that it would not have had the same impact as it does, especially since a mask or makeup aren’t a key aspect of the character.

Wolf Creek: Season One delivers the goods and will keep you on the edge of your seat until the final moments of the finale. It’s exciting and fun to see what happens when the tables are turned and the one who has been tormenting, torturing, and slaughtering tourists in Australia may have finally met the one surviving victim willing to go toe to toe with him and take him out at any cost.

Wolf Creek: Season One includes a number of great featurettes that include: Cinema to Series: The Legacy of Wolf Creek; Making a Television Series; Meet the Stars; Discovering the Outback; a Visual Effect Featurette; and Meet the Supporting Cast.

I really enjoyed Wolf Creek: Season One. If you enjoyed the movies, or are a fan of smart horror, you’re sure to enjoy it, too!

Wolf Creek: Season One is available now on DVD!

What’s your favorite moment from the Wolf Creek films or series? Leave a comment and let us know!