DVD Buzz
May 2014 | Edition 12
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SPEND A NIGHT WITH AN AWARD-WINNER

I love this time of year. Once the awards season is over all the biggest films start finding their way to DVD and Blu-Ray, ready for you to burrow into the couch and enjoy.

Spike Jonze's wonderful Her is finally out on DVD with another brilliant performance by Joaquin Phoenix leading the way. Ben Stiller is better than ever in the breathtaking The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, while Steve Coogan proves a dab hand at drama opposite Judy Dench in Philomena.

But it's not just movies out this month. Orange is the New Black was one of the biggest shows in the US last year, grab a copy and find out why.

And of course Season Four of Downton Abbey is out now. Seriously, you don't want to miss that!

Kind Regards

Andrew Cattanach
The Booktopia Movie Guru


Follow Booktopia on Twitter: @booktopia

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THE SHOW THAT STOPS THE WORLD
Click here for more details or to buy DOWNTON ABBEY
Starring: Maggie Smith, Hugh Bonneville, Elizabeth McGovern
Created by Julian Fellowes


Set in 1922, the fourth series sees the return of our much loved characters in the sumptuous setting of Downton Abbey.

The lives and loves of the Crawley family and the servants who work for them are laid bare as romance, ambition, desire and heartbreak reign in the great house. With new family members arriving and staff jostling for position, the secure, serene and ordered world of Downton is rocked by passions above and below the stairs.

In the precarious post-war landscape nothing is safe, and as a wave of financial uncertainty engulfs the country, the Crawleys face a battle to safeguard their beloved home.

THE FEELGOOD HIT OF THE YEAR
Click here for more details or to buy THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY
Starring: Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig, Sean Penn
Directed by: Ben Stiller


John Purcell's verdict: Fun, good for the family, and uplifting.

Ben Stiller directs and stars in The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty, James Thurber's classic story of a day-dreamer who escapes his anonymous life by disappearing into a world of fantasies filled with heroism, romance and action.

When his job along with that of his co-worker (Kristen Wiig) are threatened, Walter takes action in the real world embarking on a global journey that turns into an adventure more extraordinary than anything he could have ever imagined.


Click here to see the trailer and for more details

Booktopia Price: $36.75 

HILARIOUS. TRAGIC. TOUCHING. BRILLIANT
Click here for more details or to buy ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK
Starring: Taylor Schilling, Laura Prepon, Taryn Manning
Created by Jenji Kohan


The story of Piper Chapman, a woman in her thirties who is sentenced to fifteen months in prison after being convicted of a decade-old crime of transporting money for her drug-dealing girlfriend.

The offense occurred ten years prior to the start of the series, and in that time Piper had moved on to a quiet, law-abiding life among New York's upper middle class.

While in prison, Piper is reunited with Alex, and they re-examine their relationship and deal with their fellow inmates.


A ROM/COM FROM THE DIRECTOR OF BEING JOHN MALKOVICH
Click here for more details or to buy HER
Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, Scarlett Johansson, Rooney Mara
Directed by: Spike Jonze


Theodore is a lonely man in the final stages of his divorce. When he's not working as a letter writer, his down time is spent playing video games and occasionally hanging out with friends. He decides to purchase the new OS1, which is advertised as the world's first artificially intelligent operating system, "It's not just an operating system, it's a consciousness," the ad states. Theodore quickly finds himself drawn in with Samantha, the voice behind his OS1.

As they start spending time together they grow closer and closer and eventually find themselves in love. Having fallen in love with his OS, Theodore finds himself dealing with feelings of both great joy and doubt. As an OS, Samantha has powerful intelligence that she uses to help Theodore in ways others hadn't, but how does she help him deal with his inner conflict of being in love with an OS?

Click here to see the trailer and for more details
Booktopia Price: $37.95 
TWO GREAT ACTORS AT THE TOP OF THEIR GAME
Click here for more details or to buy SAVING MR. BANKS
Starring: Tom Hanks, Emma Thompson
Directed by: John Lee Hancock


Two-time Academy Award-winner Emma Thompson and fellow double Oscar-winner Tom Hanks topline Disney's "Saving Mr. Banks," inspired by the extraordinary, untold backstory of how Disney's classic "Mary Poppins" made it to the screen.

When Walt Disney's daughters begged him to make a movie of their favourite book, P.L. Travers' "Mary Poppins," he made them a promise--one that he didn't realize would take 20 years to keep. In his quest to obtain the rights, Walt comes up against a curmudgeonly, uncompromising writer who has absolutely no intention of letting her beloved magical nanny get mauled by the Hollywood machine.


THE AMAZING TRUE STORY
Click here for more details or to buy PHILOMENA
Starring: Judi Dench, Steve Coogan, Sophie Kennedy
Directed by: Stephan Frears


Philomena is the true story of one mother's search for her lost son. Falling pregnant as a teenager in Ireland in 1952, Philomena Lee was sent to the convent of Roscrea to be looked after as a "fallen woman".

When her baby was only a toddler, he was whisked away by the nuns to America for adoption. Philomena (Judi Dench) spent the next fifty years searching for him in vain. Then she met Martin Sixsmith, a world-weary journalist as cynical as Philomena was trusting. Together they set off for America on a journey that would not only reveal the extraordinary story of Philomena's son, but more...

Click here to see the trailer and for more details
Booktopia Price: $36.75
AN ASTONISHING LIST OF ACTORS IN GRIPPING PERFORMANCES
Click here for more details or to buy AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY
Starring: Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Ewan McGregor, Chris Cooper, Juliette Lewis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Abigail Breslin
Directed by: John Wells


Violet Weston (Meryl Streep) has cancer and a propensity for pills and alcohol. She's a difficult woman to deal with and her husband has finally had enough. Violet's family gathers including youngest daughter Ivy, middle daughter Karen (with her new fiancé), eldest daughter Barbara (with her separated husband and teenage daughter), and her sister Mattie Fae (with her husband and son in tow).

A family tragedy causes tensions to run high and secrets to come out. The Weston women will be forced to examine themselves and their lives whether they want to or not. Welcome to Osage County, Oklahoma in the sweltering heat of August.


BASED ON THE BOOK THAT STOLE OUR HEARTS
Click here for more details or to buy THE BOOK THIEF
Starring: Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson, Sophie Nelisse

Directed by: Brian Percival
Based on a book by: Markus Zusak


Based on the best-selling book

A German girl is sent to live with a foster family in a town near Munich, while the Nazis come to power and start world war two.

The girl develops a talent for stealing books (saving one from a Nazi book burning), and learns to read out loud to comfort a Jewish man the family is hiding from the nazis.

Soon, the girl starts writing the book of her own life, which catches the attention of death (the grim reaper).

Click here to see the trailer and for more details
Booktopia Price: $42.75 

GREAT AUSTRALIAN DRAMA
Click here for more details or to buy PUBERTY BLUES
Starring: Claudia Karvan, Susie Porter, Dan Whyllie
Created by Imogen Banks, John Edwards


It's the summer of 1979, a time of reckless abandon, free love, social upheaval and youthful rebellion...and being a teenager has never been more liberating or more frustrating.

Suspended in the fragile moment between childhood and adulthood, Debbie and Sue's lives are about to head into totally unchartered waters.

It's not just the kids who must face change and confront sexual tensions- their parents' lives are also spinning wildly out of control.

NOT TO BE MISSED
THE GRANDEST DESIGNS
Cick here for more details or to buy

COAST AUSTRALIA

Featuring: Miriam Corowa, Xanthe Mallet, Emma Johnston

For COAST Australia's inaugural journey, Neil and the team travel to the Kimberley, Sydney, the Great Barrier Reef, Tasmania, the Gold to Sunshine Coast, Victoria, Darwin & Beyond, and the Coral Coast of Western Australia. It's an epic exploration around a vast continent with fascinating stories to unearth.

Click here for more details
Booktopia Price: $28.50 

Click here for more details or to buy

GRAND DESIGNS

Featuring: Kevin Mccloud

Some have been built with bare hands, others with landmark technology. Some are made of yoghurt and cow poo, others with cutting edge materials. However different, all 8 of the homes featured in this fascinating DVD were built with one vision: to create a grand design and fulfil the dream of their owners. But did they achieve it? By request, Kevin revisits projects across England and Europe to discover, years on, whether the courage, determination and painstaking work have delivered the dream after all.

Click here for more details
Booktopia Price: $28.50
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