News Column

New on DVD: 'Star Trek Into Darkness'

September 10, 2013

YellowBrix

The nerds get their day in the sun with new DVD releases this week.

_"Star Trek Into Darkness," Grade A: The crew of the Enterprise faces a threat to Starfleet. Chris Pine stars.

Director J.J. Abrams proved with 2009's "Star Trek" that it is OK to boldly go where others had gone before, as long as the journey is exciting, original, entertaining and respectful to legions of loyal fans. His film, which found the balance between reprising and reimagining, was a direct hit. In his second voyage on the Starship Enterprise, Abrams has perfected that approach.

The movie starts at warp speed and never slows until the haunting refrains of the original theme song herald the arrival of the closing credits. The film moves so quickly, it's hard to pick up the many references to past "Star Trek" offerings.

It's the best "Star Trek" work since Gene Roddenberry brought the franchise to life in the 1960s.

_"The Big Bang Theory: The Complete Sixth Season," Grade A-minus: The CBS series continues to prove that a situation comedy can be smart AND funny. And, it can be smart dealing with topics that are very ordinary. This season includes humor found in the cancelation of a beloved TV show, a weird game of Dungeons & Dragons, hero worship for a TV scientist and an unforgettable trip to Bakersfield, Calif., for a comic book convention.

The series has one of the best core casts in TV, but the addition of Mayim Bialik as Amy Farrah Fowler is pure genius.

One of the extras included is a featurette that offers a look behind the scenes with the cast and astronauts Mike Massimino and Buzz Aldrin as they discuss Howard Wolowitz's mission to the International Space Station.

_"Revolution: The Complete First Season," Grade B: The DVD set includes all 20 episodes from the first season of the NBC series about a world where electricity no longer exists. The series is being released just before the launch of the second season on Sept. 25.

The series starts with a good idea and ends strong. The DVD set will allow you to speed through the middle episodes that get bogged down because the writers lost focus. Also included are 90 minutes of bonus content, including two featurettes, a gag reel, deleted scenes and bonus webisodes.

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Also new this week:

"Peeples": Wedding plans are tested in this comedy starring Craig Robinson.

"Hammer of the Gods": A coming of age tale that tracks the character Steinar's dangerous quest to find his banished brother.

"Blue Bloods _ The Third Season": CBS series about a multi-generational family of cops in New York.

"Sesame Street: C is for Cooking": Includes songs and stories about eating healthy.

"Star Trek: The Original Series_Origins": Includes episodes introducing Khan, Klingons and Tribbles.

"Dora the Explorer: Dora's Great Roller Skate Adventure": Dora and Boots stand up to the bullying Big Wheeler.

"Secret Millionaires Club: Volume Two": Business savvy friends go on space adventure.

"Chicago Fire: Season One": NBC series about men and women who work at Chicago Firehouse 51.

"Delete": Humanity's threatened when machines become self-aware.

"The Contractor": A contractor (Danny Trejo) quickly learns his new job is not as it seems.

"It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia _ Season 8": Continuing antics of misfit bar owners.

"The League Season 4": FX series about the odd participants in a fantasy sports league.

"Sisters & Brothers": The late Cory Monteith ("Glee") plays a Hollywood star facing the perils of Hollywood.

"Supernatural: The Complete Eighth Season": After a year apart, the supernatural-fighting brothers are reunited.

"Scooby-Doo! 13 Spooky Tales Run For Your 'Rife!": More scary animated adventures with Scooby and the gang.

"Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk": Latest release in the Marvel Knights Animation's series has Wolverine tracking Dr. Bruce Banner.

"Chime Time Adventures": Twins Tommy and Tallulah work to keep everything running smoothly in Tickety Town.

"The Mole Man of Belmont Avenue": Slacker building owners discover a creature in the basement.

"Blood": Detective brothers (Paul Bettany, Stephen Graham) who will do whatever it takes to catch a killer.

"Luther 3": Luther (Idris Elba) investigates a fetishist who is murdering women.

"Love Is All You Need": Pierce Brosnan stars in the romantic comedy.

"Wish You Were Here": A vacation turns into a nightmare when one friend vanishes.

"The Smurfs: The Legend of Smurfy Hollow": The Smurfs have some Halloween fun.

"Puppy in My Pocket: The Friendship Ceremony": Kitty Princess Ava must find her way back to Pocketville.

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Rick Bentley: rbentley@fresnobee.com

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