The excitement has long been building for the next X-Men movie, Days of Future Past, which will combine the actors playing the younger and older versions of the mutants in previous movies. But Marvel, never one to leave wallets untapped, filled the gap before that movie with another solo turn by one of the men: The Wolverine.
Starring Hugh Jackman, the movie was an improvement over 2009's X-Men Origins: Wolverine. And it had a distinct style, one that recalled the novels of Raymond Chandler before collapsing under the weight of the sort of big, noisy ending that superhero movies too often require. It put Wolverine in a world with a billionaire, an endangered damsel, a deadly dame and trouble aplenty — in short, one where he easily could be wearing a tie and hat while talking tough on the mean streets. Too bad it settled for that ending.
In addition to digital downloads, the movie arrives this week in a standard DVD ($29.99), a Blu-ray/DVD/digital combo ($39.99) and an "unleashed extended edition" set that includes the 3D Blu-ray/Blu-ray/DVD/digital bundle ($49.99). Extras, which vary depending on which version you get, can include an alternate ending and a Days of Future Past set tour.
You also might want to look for the $199 "Adamantium Collection" on Blu-ray with The Wolverine, the previous Wolverine, the four X-Men movies and a sleeve to hold Days of Future Past after it is on disc, plus a 55-minute documentary — all in a packet that includes a Wolverine claw.
These DVDs were released this week:
Films: The Smurfs 2; The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones; Drinking Buddies; All the Boys Love Mandy Lane (2006); Winnie Mandela; Things Never Said; Good Ol' Freda (documentary on the Beatles' longtime secretary); Far From Vietnam (1967, political documentary on U.S. military involvement in Vietnam); Marvel's Iron Man and Hulk: Heroes United (full-length feature from Marvel Animation Studios, Disney); Wings of a Warrior: The Jimmy Doolittle Story (documentary about American flying pioneer); A Christmas Tree Miracle; Investigation of a Citizen Above Suspicion (1970, Criterion Collection); Nashville (1975, Criterion Collection); Il Futuro (The Future) (Italy); Boston Red Sox 2013 World Series Collector's Edition.
TV series: Duck Dynasty: Seasons 1-3 Collector's Set; Hawaii Five-O: The Complete Series (1968-80, 73-disc set); Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman: The Complete Series (1976-78, 38-disc set); Transformers Prime: Season 3 — Beast Hunters; Hot in Cleveland: Season Four; The Simpsons Season 16 (2004-05).
THE WASHINGTON POST