Laserblast: 2012, Where the Wild Things Are, Ponyo & more

Well, well, well – in the month of March, home videos releases of horror, fantasy, and science fiction titles begin with a blast – a laserblast, that is – thanks to the release on DVD and Blu-ray of 2012, the latest epic of destruction from that master of disaster, Roland Emmerich. Lawrence French had good things to say about the film when it was in theatres, and even people who felt it fell short, suggest that the visual effects make it worthwhile viewing. So why not check it out?
Considerably less enticing is the DVD and Blu-ray release of WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE, director Spike Jonze’s botched adaptation of the classic children’s book by Maurice Sendak. If you are interested in fantasy entertainment for small children you would be much better off checking out Hayao Miyazaki’s PONYO (reviewed here), which hits store shelves in three versions this week: two-disc DVD, two-disc special edition with plush toy, and two-disc Blu-ray-DVD combo. Timed with the home vid debut of PONYO is a new two-disc special edition DVD of an earlier Miyazaki favorite MY NEIGHBOR TOTERO.
Another old favorite returns on home video, this time courtesy of a new Blu-ray release of Ray Harryhausen’s CLASH OF THE TITANS. Although the the film is not quite the epic masterpiece intended, I am always surprised at each new viewing by how much better the film holds up than I remembered, at least for the first half; then Bubo the Owl shows up and things go downhill a bit. Nevertheless, this remains a fine showcase for Harryhausen’s stop-motion magic, and the Medusa sequence ranks among the best work he ever did. I’m sure the rapidly approaching remake will be loaded with high-tech digital effects; whether it will surpass the charm of the original remains to be scene.
Finally, cashing in on the upcoming theatrical debut of ALICE IN WONDERLAND, a miniseries adaptation of Lewis Carroll, simply titled ALICE, arrives on Blu-ray and DVD.

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