Mystery and horror fans are in for a bloody good time April 5 with the Blu-ray and DVD release of the latest entries from a couple of popular franchises — the new Scream and the latest adaptation of Death on the Nile — while the first season of “CSI: Vegas” arrives on DVD.
Paramount Pictures and Spyglass Media Group releases the fifth entry in the “Scream” franchise on Blu-ray Disc, DVD and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray April 5. The studio is also releasing the new film and the original 1996 horror flick in a “Scream” two-movie collection on 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray. The 2022 Scream film reunites Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox and David Arquette, reprising their roles. The story takes place 25 years after a streak of brutal murders shocked the quiet town of Woodsboro as a terrifying new killer resurrects the Ghostface mask. As the deaths mount, Woodsboro’s new targets must seek help from the survivors of the original Ghostface attacks. Only Sidney Prescott (Campbell), former sheriff Dewey Riley (Arquette), and reporter Gale Weathers (Cox) can find a way to stop the killer when everyone is a suspect. The film also stars Melissa Barrera, Mason Gooding, Jenna Ortega, Jack Quaid and Marley Shelton. The film earned $81.6 million at the domestic box office. Read a review here.
Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution April 5 releases 20th Century Studios’ Death on the Nile on Blu-ray Disc, DVD and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray. The latest adaptation of Agatha Christie’s acclaimed 1937 novel is directed Kenneth Branagh, who also stars as famed Belgian detective Hercule Poirot, and serves as a sequel to his 2017 adaptation of Murder on the Orient Express. The cast also includes Tom Bateman as Bouc, Annette Bening as Euphemia Bouc, Russell Brand as Dr. Bessner, Ali Fazal as Andrew Katchadourian, Dawn French as Bowers, Gal Gadot as Linnet Ridgeway Doyle, Armie Hammer as Simon Doyle, Rose Leslie as Louise Bourget, Emma Mackey as Jacqueline de Bellefort, Sophie Okonedo as Salome Otterbourne, Jennifer Saunders as Marie Van Schuyler and Letitia Wright as Rosalie Otterbourne. In the film, Poirot’s spectacular Egyptian vacation aboard a river boat becomes a terrifying search for a murderer after a picture-perfect couple’s honeymoon is cut tragically short. The film earned a disappointing $45.4 million at the domestic box office, a far cry from the $102.8 million of its predecessor. However, Death on the Nile also had to contend with several delays due to the pandemic, and in the meantime saw many of its cast members hit by negative press and social media cancellation campaigns. It did earn positive reviews for its performances and spectacle, and a third Branagh adaptation is reportedly already in development. Read a review here.
CBS and Paramount Home Entertainment release CSI: Vegas — Season One on DVD April 5. The continuation of the 2000-15 original “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” procedural crime drama stars Jorja Fox and William Peterson reprising their roles as Sara Sidle and Gil Grissom. “CSI: Vegas” follows the team as they return to where it all began, faced with obstacles and trying to keep the city of Las Vegas from disaster. Facing an existential threat that could bring down the entire crime lab and release thousands of convicted killers back onto the neon-lit streets of Vegas, a brilliant new team of investigators led by Maxine Roby (Paula Newsome) must enlist the help Gil, Sara and David Hodges (Wallace Langham). This combined force will deploy the latest forensic techniques to do what they do best — follow the evidence — in order to preserve and serve justice in Sin City. The three-disc collection includes all 10 episodes from the first season, plus deleted scenes and three bonus featurettes.
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment releases season four of the dystopian drama series “The Handmaid’s Tale” on DVD April 5. The Handmaid’s Tale: The Complete Fourth Season includes all 10 episodes of the fourth season. Starring Emmy Award-winning actress Elisabeth Moss (“Top of the Lake,” “Mad Men”), “The Handmaid’s Tale” tells the story of June Osborn (Moss), a handmaid who is one of the caste of women forced into sexual servitude as an attempt to repopulate a devastated world. In season four, June strikes back against Gilead as a fierce rebel leader but the risks she takes bring dangerous new challenges and her quest for justice and revenge threatens to consume her. The series also stars Joseph Fiennes, Yvonne Strahovski, Alexis Bledel, Madeline Brewer, Amanda Brugel, Ann Dowd, O-T Fagbenle, Max Minghella, Samira Wiley, Bradley Whitford and Sam Jaeger.
Parallel Mothers, written and directed by Pedro Almodóvar, arrives on Blu-ray and DVD April 5 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. The film earned Oscar nominations for Best Actress (Penelope Cruz) and Best Original Score (Alberto Iglesias). In the film, two women, Janis and Ana, coincide in a hospital room where they are going to give birth. Both are single and become pregnant by accident. Janis, middle-aged, doesn’t regret it and she is exultant. The other, Ana, an adolescent, is scared, repentant and traumatized. Janis tries to encourage her while they move like sleepwalkers along hospital corridors. The few words they exchange in these hours will create a very close link between the two, which by chance develops and complicates, and changes their lives in a decisive way.
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment April 5 also releases Jockey, a film festival favorite about an aging racehorse rider (Clifton Collins Jr.) and his quest for one last win. The film is available on DVD and Blu-ray Disc. Collins portrays veteran jockey Silva, who hopes to win one last title for his longtime trainer (Molly Parker), who has acquired what appears to be a championship horse. But the years — and injuries — have taken a toll on his body, throwing into question his ability to continue his lifelong passion. And the arrival of a young rookie rider (Moises Arias), who claims to be his son, and whom he takes under his wing, further complicates the path to fulfilling his dream. Filmed at a real racetrack in Arizona, and featuring real jockeys, Jockey was an official selection at the 2021 Sundance Film Festival, where Collins won a U.S. Dramatic Special Jury Award for Best Actor. It also was an official selection at the 2021 SCAD Savannah Film Festival, where Collins was honored with a Distinguished Performance Award; the
2021 Toronto International Film Festival, the 2021 Hamptons International Film Festival, and the 2021 AFI Film Festival, where it won the Audience Award in the Narrative Feature Film category.
The Pierce Brosnan adventure The King’s Daughter was released for digital purchase April 4 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment and Gravitas Ventures. In addition to Brosnan, the film features Kaya Scodelario, Benjamin Walker, Pablo Schreiber, Ben Lloyd-Hughes, Fan Bingbing, William Hurt and Julie Andrews as the narrator. In the film, King Louis XIV’s (Brosnan) quest for immortality leads him to capture a mermaid’s life force, but his immovable will is challenged when his long-hidden illegitimate daughter (Scodelario) forms a bond with the magical creature. It arrives on Blu-ray and DVD April 19.
The horror-thriller The Long Night debuts on Blu-ray and DVD April 5 from Well Go USA Entertainment. In the film, while searching for the parents she never knew, a young woman returns to her childhood stomping grounds with her boyfriend to investigate her family’s whereabouts. Her search takes a bizarre turn when a nightmarish cult looking to fulfill a twisted apocalyptic prophecy arrives to terrorize the couple. The sophomore feature film from music video director and composer Rich Ragsdale stars Scout Taylor-Compton (Halloween I and II), Nolan Gerard Funk (“The Flight Attendant”), Deborah Kara Unger (The Game) and Jeff Fahey (“Lost,” Machete).
Two Japanese Ultraman titles, Ultraseven X: The Complete Series and Superior 8 Ultra Brothers, hit Blu-ray Disc April 5 from Mill Creek Entertainment.
Superior 8 Ultra Brothers unites three generations of Ultra Heroes for an interdimensional adventure. The story begins in 1966 as three boys named Daigo, Asuka, and Gamu watch the premiere of a new television series called Ultraman. Captivated from the start, they continue to follow and be inspired by the ongoing exploits of Ultraman and his fellow Ultra Brothers. Decades later, Daigo is working for the tourism board in Yokohama when he witnesses a strange mirage of a dying world ravaged by giant monsters. Additional visions soon follow, including one in which the friendly shopkeepers Hayata, Dan, Goh and Hokuto transform into the famous Ultra Brothers from TV. Daigo confides in Asuka and Gamu, who begin to have similar dreams in which they become Ultramen called “Dyna” and “Gaia.” The sudden appearance of Monster Guesra and the hero Ultraman Mebius convince Daigo that his visions are coming true, and his world is in great danger.
In Ultraseven X: The Complete Series, available on Blu-ray and digital, a young man is awoken from a fevered dream and barely recognizes himself. A mysterious woman hands him a spectacles-shaped item, says the key holds tremendous power, and tells him it is his duty to save the world. Before asking any more questions, he and the woman are torn apart by a violent explosion. Soon, he is contacted by a secret organization named Deus. He is told he is Agent Jin and his job is to rid this world of vicious alien invaders.
Independent film distributor 1091 Pictures April 5 releases through digital retailers On the Trail of UFOs: Night Visitors, a documentary from Small Town Monsters that investigates a series of cattle mutilations that have occurred at the Miller Ranch in Southern Colorado since 1999. On the Trail of UFOs: Night Visitors follows investigator Shannon LeGrow (host of the “Into the Fray” podcast) as he visits the Miller Ranch in Southern Colorado, where the property owner claims to have lost 16 cattle in ways that truly defy logic. They find an unusual amount of activity, from odd lights seen in the air and on the ground, to unusual sounds, enigmatic government black helicopters, and even specific parts of the property that seemed to invite deadly accidents. At the heart of all this activity was a series of cattle mutilations that truly call into question what we think we know about the topic of aliens and UFOs. Directed and produced by Seth Breedlove, the documentary is a follow-up to the 2020 miniseries On the Trail of UFOs, and 2021’s On The Trail of UFOs: Dark Sky.
On the streaming side of things, April 5 sees the premiere of the new 4K restoration of Star Trek: The Motion Picture — The Director’s Cut exclusively on streaming service Paramount+ on April 5. The 1979 theatrical cut of Star Trek: The Motion Picture was considered by many fans to be an incomplete film due to a string of production problems, as due to an ironclad release date it was rushed to theaters with incomplete visual effects and forced editing choices, clocking in at 131 minutes. Many critics felt the film’s pace was slow and ponderous. A 1983 television edit for ABC added 12 minutes of deleted scenes back into the film. In 2001, director Robert Wise revisited the film to refine the edit and enhance the visual effects with CGI. His updated vision, coming in at 136 minutes, was released on DVD in standard-definition, but has never been available in high-definition until now, as the new visual effects had to be re-rendered in 4K. Read a review here.
Fans will also have the opportunity to see the remastered Star Trek: The Motion Picture — The Director’s Cut on the big screen when Fathom Events and Paramount Pictures bring it to theaters for an exclusive two-day event May 22 and May 25. Tickets will go on sale Friday, April 8 at FathomEvents.com. The director’s cut will be released on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray in September.