News Column

So many ways to 'Trek Into Darkness'

September 6, 2013


So many ways to 'Trek Into Darkness'

J.J. Abrams' "Star Trek Into Darkness" will be 2013's first summer blockbuster to beam its way into your home Tuesday on Blu- ray, DVD and VOD rental, and while we may not agree on the quality of the film -- I enjoyed every overwhelming minute of it -- we can agree that choosing where to buy it shouldn't be harder than the Kobayashi Maru test.

The basic DVD and Blu-ray editions of the film feature seven short behind-the-scenes featurettes that cover the creation of the thrilling opening sequence, the casting of "Sherlock" star Benedict Cumberbatch as the villain whose name I dare not reveal, and more boilerplate, standard-issue stuff.

But "Star Trek Into Darkness" is a movie with rabid fans, whether they're old-school Trekkers, Abrams acolytes, or that group whose name rhymes with Cumberwitches. Those fans want and expect more from a home release, and Paramount Pictures will give them more -- for a price.

If you buy the $19.99 special edition Blu-ray of "Into Darkness" from , you get a bonus disc with 30 minutes of exclusive content. For one cent more, you can get 's special edition, which also comes with a bonus disc that contains 30 different minutes of exclusive content. And if you buy a , you get the best bonus of all: an on- screen commentary track from Abrams and his collaborators.

Oh, and then there's the ,

and, for a mere $80, you can get a version of the movie that comes with a .

Retailer-exclusive content is nothing new in the world of home entertainment, but this release seems particularly insidious considering the property. Paramount knows "Star Trek" has voracious fans, and is banking on them buying multiple versions of the same film.

My recommendation, should you still want to buy the film: Get the Best Buy version, and preorder it now on their website. You'll get a code to instantly watch a digital copy on the CinemaNow app available on Xbox, PS3, iOS and Android devices, and Blu-ray players. I've already watched it a few times on my iPhone in the last two weeks.

Set your DVR

Next week is a big one for TV premieres, starting with the Sunday premiere of HBO's gangster saga, "Boardwalk Empire." Steve Buscemi returns as Nucky Thompson for a fourth season and welcomes new cast members Patricia Arquette ("Medium") and Ron Livingston (the tremendous "Drinking Buddies") to the fold.

A crime story of a different kind returns Tuesday to FX as the sixth season of "Sons of Anarchy" begins. Jimmy Smits becomes a series regular alongside Ron Perlman and Charlie Hunnam -- who was recently cast in the title role of the film adaptation of "Fifty Shades of Grey" -- in the drama about a California motorcycle club.

But if intense drama isn't your thing, there's always the fun of talent competition "The X Factor," returning to Fox on Wednesday. Singers Kelly Rowland and Paulina Rubio will sit at the judges' table alongside the infamous Simon Cowell and pop star Demi Lovato, who will also have a recurring role on the fifth season of "Glee" this fall.

* Sean Stangland is a Daily Herald copy editor, a tireless consumer of pop culture and a hopeless nerd. Follow him on Twitter @SeanStanglandDH.

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