'Veronica Mars' movie comes to DVD, Blu-ray

Akron Beacon JournalMay 5, 2014 


    These DVDs were released this week:

    Films: Desert Riders (documentary exposing the trafficking of young boys from Pakistan, Bangladesh and other countries to be camel jockeys); Blazing Saddles 40th Anniversary (1974, Blu-ray release with added extras); Still Mine; Making the Rules; All in Good Time (romantic comedy about the culture clash of a young Indian couple in an Indian community in Northern England); Simon and the Oaks (Sweden); Separate But Equal (1991, remastered); Generation War; Alexander Calder (1988, documentary); Call Me Crazy: A Five Film; Survival Code; Seven Boxes (Paraguay); Love Happy (1949, final Marx Brothers film); Countess Dracula (1971); Ace in the Hole (1951, Billy Wilder classic, Criterion Collection); Johnny Come Lately (1943); Josh: Against the Grain (Pakistan); Between Sisters; Brownian Movement (2011, Netherlands); The Story of the Jews With Simon Schama (PBS); The Dinosaur Experiment; Suzanne Vega: Solitude Standing (2003 live concert); Explorer Koko (Chuggington series for children); Lewis Black: Old Yeller (live stand-up comedy); DC Universe: Son of Batman (animated).

    TV series: Rookie Blue: Fourth Season; China Beach: Season Three (1989-90); Eureka: Season Three; Agatha Christie's Poirot, Series 12 (2011); Happy Days: Fifth Season (1977-78); Laverne & Shirley: Eighth and Final Season (1982-83); Doomsday Preppers: Season 3; Republic of Doyle, Season 1; Adventure Time: The Suitor.


The fans of the TV show Veronica Mars at least briefly turned show business on its ear last year, when the makers of the show launched a Kickstarter campaign to back a movie sequel to the three-season series.

With a goal of $2 million, the campaign quickly raised $5.7 million from more than 91,000 supporters — extraordinary numbers, especially considering that Veronica was considered a niche program, with modest ratings at best on minor networks (the old UPN and then The CW). I was one of those 91,000 supporters.

The movie was made, had a limited release (it never opened in Lexington) and was made available as a digital download. This week, it will be on disc ($28.98 DVD, $29.98 Blu-ray/digital combo). I enjoyed it, but the plot would have worked better for a TV season.

If you are tuning in late, the series starred Kristen Bell as Veronica, a high school (and later college) student who works for her father, private eye Keith (Enrico Colantoni). Each has run afoul of the social order in tony Neptune, Calif. — but each also exposed hypocrisy and dirty deeds by the privileged around them.

The series was serialized but not soap-operatic, even when dealing with Veronica's love life.

The movie, meanwhile, picks up close to a decade after the series' end. Veronica is in New York, has finished law school, is settled down with Piz (Chris Lowell) and could be getting a major law-firm job. Then a call comes from Logan (Jason Dohring), suspected of murder and needing Veronica's snooping skills. Which leads Veronica back to corrupt Neptune and her high-school reunion.

The people and dialogue work well, but the storytelling felt hasty, and the supporting characters too often felt as if they were just around for show.

The movie did leave room for a sequel. It won't be the same as a series, but I'd kick in again.

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