'Grand Budapest Hotel' comes to DVD, Blu-ray

June 16, 2014 


    These DVDs were released this week:

    Films: Joe (starring Nicolas Cage and based on Gary Hawkins' adaptation of Larry Brown's 1991 novel); The Lego Movie; Ernest & Celestine (2013 Oscar nominee for best animated film); Jimmy P.; The Attorney (South Korea); B.B. King: The Life of Riley (documentary); Breaking Through (documentary profiling several openly gay elected officials); A Fighting Man; Paul Bowles: The Cage Door Is Always Open (documentary); Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975, Peter Weir-directed classic); The Final Member (documentary on the Icelandic Phallological Museum, its founder and the two men vying to be the sole donor of a human penis); Alpha Alert; Four of a Kind; Hearts and Minds (1974, Peter Davis' landmark 1974 documentary on the Vietnam War, Criterion Collection); Judex (1963, Criterion Collection); Meth Head; The Monkey's Paw; No Clue; The Machine; Walk of Shame; James Thurber: The Life and Hard Times (2000, documentary); The Good Witch's Gift (Hallmark Channel original movie); This Is America, Charlie Brown; The Rise of the Nazi Party (three-disc documentary series); Top Hat and Tales: Harold Ross and the Making of the New Yorker (Part 1); The Angela Mao Ying Collection and Alexander's Lost World (a travelogue by documentarian David Adams through Central Asia).

    TV series: House of Cards: Second Season; Wilfred: Third Season; Masterpiece Mystery!: The Escape Artist; DCI Banks: Season One; Scott & Bailey: Season One; Death in Paradise: Season One; Regular Show: Third Season; Power Rangers Megaforce: Ultra Defenders.


Set in a castlelike hotel in the fictional Mitteleuropean country of Zubrowka on the eve of World War II, the comedy The Grand Budapest Hotel revolves — like all of director Wes Anderson's films — around a quirky middle-age man and the precocious boy he takes under his wing.

The film ($29.98 on DVD, $39.99 on Blu-ray) fully engages one of the fascinating tensions that have always animated Anderson's fussily decorated cinematic jewel boxes, namely how one learns to become a man within a universe of characters so stylized and artfully concocted that they seem barely human.

The great good fortune of The Grand Budapest Hotel is that the tutor in question is played by Ralph Fiennes, who lends sincerity to a character who can be charming and rather loathsome at the turn of a schilling.

Extras include a four-part making-of short; the featurettes "Bill Murray Tours the Town" and "The Society of the Crossed Keys;" a lecture, "Kunstmuseum Zubrowka;" and more.

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