‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ Tops ‘Watched at Home’ Chart for Third Week

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, the final installment in Disney’s “Star Wars” sequel trilogy, was No. 1 for the third consecutive week on the “Watched at Home” chart the week ended April 18.

The film’s run at the top of the weekly chart, which tracks transactional video activity compiled from studio and retailer data through DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group, has been extended by the lack of any high-profile theatrical releases coming into the home video pipeline, due to the closure of movie theaters more than a month ago as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic’s stay-at-home orders.

The Rise of Skywalker vaunted into the top spot on the chart — which measures disc sales, digital purchase (electronic sellthrough, or EST) and digital rental — three weeks ago in the wake of its release on Blu-ray Disc, DVD and 4K Ultra HD.

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Sony Pictures’ Bad Boys for Life shot up to No. 2 from No. 4 on the “Watched at Home” chart, its popularity perhaps fanned by marketing in support of the film’s April 21 debut on disc. The third “Bad Boys” film was released digitally on March 31 due to the pandemic but had already grossed more than $200 million in North American theaters, making it the top box office earner in the franchise.

Paramount’s Sonic the Hedgehog slipped to No. 3  on the “Watched at Home” chart after two weeks in the second spot. The film, based on the iconic video game character, was another early digital release (March 31) and is scheduled to come out on Blu-ray Disc and DVD on May 21.

Universal Pictures’ Dolittle, a fantasy comedy adventure film about a veterinarian (played by Robert Downey Jr.) who can communicate with animals, slipped to No. 4 from No. 3, while Sony Pictures’  Jumanji: The Next Level remained at No. 5 for the second week.

Fox’s Underwater and Warner’s Just Mercy both debuted in the top 20 for the first time after they were released on Blu-ray Disc and DVD.

Underwater, which bowed at No. 13 on the “Watched at Home” chart, is a science-fiction horror film, starring Kristen Stewart, that grossed just over $40 million at the domestic box office.

Just Mercy, which entered the chart at No. 15, is a legal drama starring Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx with a $50 million North American theatrical take.

Stay-at-home orders also appear to be making people rediscover older movies, as evidenced by the “Watched at Home” chart debut, at No. 20, of Harry Potter: The Complete 8-Film Collection, from Warner. The boxed set also is No. 1 on Amazon’s “Kids & Family” best sellers.

  1. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (Disney)
  2. Bad Boys for Life (Sony)
  3. Sonic the Hedgehog (Paramount)
  4. Dolittle (Universal)
  5. Jumanji: The Next Level (Sony)
  6. The Call of the Wild (Disney, 2020)
  7. The Gentlemen (STX/Universal, 2019)
  8. Birds of Prey (Warner)
  9. 1917 (Universal)
  10. Little Women (Sony, 2019)
  11. Bloodshot (Sony, 2020)
  12. The Way Back (Warner)
  13. Underwater (Fox)
  14. Knives Out (Lionsgate)
  15. Just Mercy (Warner)
  16. Ford v Ferrari (Fox)
  17. Spies in Disguise (Fox)
  18. Onward (Disney)
  19. Frozen II (Disney)
  20. Harry Potter: The Complete 8-Film Collection (Warner)

 

Source: DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group
Includes U.S. digital sales, digital rentals, and DVD, Blu-ray Disc and 4K Ultra HD sales for the week ended April 18

Charlie’s Angels (2019)

BLU-RAY REVIEW:

Street Date 3/10/20;
Sony Pictures;
Action;
Box Office $17.8 million;
$30.99 DVD, $34.99 Blu-ray, $40.99 UHD;
Rated ‘PG-13’ for action/violence, language and some suggestive material.
Stars Kristen Stewart, Naomi Scott, Ella Balinska, Elizabeth Banks, Djimon Hounsou, Sam Claflin, Noah Centineo, Nat Faxon, Patrick Stewart.

As a staple of “Jiggle TV” in the 1970s and early 1980s, “Charlie’s Angels” delighted audiences with the sex appeal of a trio of female private investigators solving crimes in skimpy outfits on a weekly basis.

The latest reinvention of the franchise comes courtesy of Elizabeth Banks, who not only produced, wrote and directed the new film version, but also stars as the new Bosley, the manager of the Charles Townsend Agency who supports the girls on their missions.

Banks delivers a smart but relatively straightforward espionage-thriller sanitized for the #MeToo era, a long way from the original TV show or the over-the-top action-comedy stylings of the 2000 and 2003 “Charlie’s Angels” movies.

The new Charlie’s Angels feels more like Kingsman infused with girl power and mixed with a touch of Men in Black (minus the aliens, of course).

The story, surprisingly enough, is a continuation of the world established by the original TV show and the first two movies, offering several references to those previous adventures (though no allusions are made to the short-lived 2011 reboot TV series). In the update, the Townsend Agency has expanded to become an international security and detective firm, recruiting an army of angels and a batch of “Bosleys” to train and watch over them, with “Bosley” becoming a rank of leadership within the organization.

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The latest adventure comes on the heels of the retirement of the original Bosley (Patrick Stewart, who it seems is meant to be playing the same character as David Doyle on the TV show and Bill Murray in the first movie), paving the way for Banks’ Boz to assume more authority in the organization. Meanwhile, the agency sends a pair of angels (Kristen Stewart and Ella Balinska) to help a computer programmer (Naomi Scott) stop the product launch of a new home assistant A.I. device with a design flaw that could allow it to be weaponized to kill whomever uses it.

This naturally attracts the attention of a team of international criminals and assassins, leading to some effective action sequences as the girls fight to survive the mission without being quite sure who they can trust to actually help them.

Banks’ screenplay, from a story by Evan Spiliotopoulos and David Auburn, offers some clever plot twists and funny riffs on action-movie tropes. However, given the times in which we live, Banks can’t help but pepper the film with a slew of “men are horrible” clichés to try to give the film a bit more feminist street cred.

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Unlike the earlier films, in which the core trio were already a unit, the new film uses its story as an excuse to show a trio of angels coming together to form their team, getting past the lingering personality conflicts and personal baggage that arrived with them.

The formation of the new cast is the focus of one of the four behind-the-scenes featurettes included with the Blu-ray. The others focus on the stunts, the costumes, and Banks’ take on the material, and taken together equal about 25 minutes of making-of footage.

Other Blu-ray bonuses include five fun deleted scenes running a bit more than five minutes, a three-minute gag reel, and a four-minute “Don’t Call Me Angel” music video by Ariana Grande, Miley Cyrus and Lana Del Rey.

 

Fox Releasing ‘Underwater’ on Home Video April 14

The sci-fi thriller Underwater will be available on Blu-ray Disc, DVD and digitally April 14 from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.

Kristen Stewart stars as a quick-thinking mechanical engineer on board an undersea mining rig damaged by an earthquake that renders its communication and escape systems unusable. After temporarily staving off disaster, the crew finds their only hope is a dangerous walk across the ocean floor to an abandoned vessel, but they quickly learn they are not alone among the depths of the ocean.

The cast also includes Vincent Cassel, Jessica Henwick, John Gallagher Jr., Mamoudou Athie and T.J. Miller.

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The ‘PG-13’-rated film earned $17.2 million at the domestic box office.

Blu-ray and digital extras include feature audio commentary by director William Eubank, associate producer Jared Purrington and production writer Phil Gawthorne; deleted and extended scenes with optional commentary; a “Real Bunny Montage”; and the three-part “Making Underwater,” with chapters on “Design,” “Production” and “Creatures & Visual Effects.”

The digital version of the film will include an exclusive alternate ending with optional commentary. A digital copy is included with the Blu-ray.

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Universal Releasing ‘J.T. LeRoy’ on Disc June 4

Universal Pictures Home Entertainment will release J.T. LeRoy on Blu-ray and DVD June 4. The film is currently available on demand and for digital download.

The biopic stars Kristen Stewart as Savannah Knoop, who spends six years pretending to be the celebrated author and cult status character JT LeRoy, the made-up literary persona of her sister-in-law, played by Laura Dern.

The cast also includes Jim Sturgess, Courtney Love and Diane Kruger.

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‘Twilight’ Coming on 4K Ultra HD From Lionsgate

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of Twilight’s theatrical debut, Lionsgate’s Summit Entertainment will  release the film on 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack (plus Blu-ray and digital) and all five of “The Twilight Saga” films on Blu-ray Combo Pack (two Blu-rays, one DVD, plus digital) and digital 4K Ultra HD on Oct. 23.

Fathom Events will also celebrate the anniversary with a two-day movie event on Oct. 21 and 23 on approximately 450 screens nationwide. Fathom will give away mini-posters (while supplies last) to fans and will treat them to an introduction from director Catherine Hardwicke and an exclusive sneak peek of a brand-new special feature.

Based on the book series by Stephenie Meyer, Twilight stars Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart as the star-crossed lovers Edward and Bella alongside Taylor Lautner, Anna Kendrick, Billy Burke, Peter Facinelli, Nikki Reed, Jackson Rathbone and Kellan Lutz.  Bella Swan (Stewart) doesn’t expect much when she moves to the small town of Forks, until she meets the mysterious and handsome Edward Cullen (Pattinson) — a boy who’s hiding a dark secret: he’s a vampire.

The Twilight 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack ($22.99) includes hours of special features and a new, never-before-seen featurette, “Twilight Tour…10 Years Later,” which follows director Hardwick and actor Rathbone through memorable sets from the film.

The 4K releases include Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos audio.

All five of the Blu-ray Combo Packs ($14.99 each) feature new box art designs from renowned illustrator Justin Erikson. The combo packs include special features such as deleted scenes, character featurettes, cast interviews, and music videos. TwilightNew MoonEclipse, and Breaking Dawn – Part 1 also include both the theatrical and the extended versions of the film.