New on DVD and Blu-Ray

A jam-packed week, with several titles courtesy of Criterion’s new budget line for its new-release titles, Janus Contemporaries. That includes the Louis Garrel-Noemie Merlant crime comedy The Innocent, the latest film that Jafar Panahi made against the orders of the Iranian government, and the festival favorite EO, the most bludgeoning and visually audacious movie about how it’s hard for an animal in a man’s world since Babe: Pig in the City. Meanwhile, mainline Criterion has out a Tod Browning box set, with three films including his legendary Freaks, just one of a few spooky titles out of this week: there’s the one where Dracula is on a boat, the nasty remake of The Blob, the second and even more swiftly-forgotten Haunted Mansion movie, and the sixth direct-to-video Bring It On sequel that somehow steers the franchise into slasher-comedy territory. There’s also Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s debut (and film-school thesis) Passion, several remastered Blu-Rays of Universal catalog titles, including a well-timed Casino reissue, and a very ghoulishly-timed release of the Helen Mirren Golda Meir biopic (with Liev Schreiber as Henry Kissinger!). At least you can enjoy tales of untainted historical figures like, uh, the fifth season of The Crown.

Oh, and hi Barbie! Like Barbie herself, Barbie represents many things: a delightful, visually dazzling comedy for all ages, a treat for the Mistress America heads, an enormously successful piece of corporate synergy with some light digs at the idea of corporate synergy (that won’t affect the plans for Mattel to make a dark, “A24-type” movie about Barney the dinosaur), a Feminism 101 pamphlet that’s shallow but resonant for the non-online women and girls who don’t think about these things very often, something to replace The Nice Guys in discussions of Ryan Gosling’s comedic talents, a place for Noah Baumbach to put his Stephen Malkmus takes. But most of all, it is a movie (or maybe even just five minutes of a movie) that will absolutely fuck your shit up if you happen to be a trans girl who named herself (and consciously and unconsciously modeled herself) after Greta Gerwig. I won’t blame anybody who wanted off the Mattel-branded ride, and I found varying levels of faults with it both times I saw it, but it hit me on such a molecular level that I can’t do anything but cherish it, especially when it somehow managed this as a four-quadrant blockbuster under the supervision of a toy company. I promise that I will try to whip my thoughts on it into an articlelike shape, but I don’t know that I’ll be able to get to the heart of the matter better than John Carpenter did:

Animal House (Universal)
Backdraft (Universal)
Barbie 4K (Warner)
The Best of Times (Kino)
The Blob 4K (Shout Factory)
Bring It On: Cheer or Die (Universal)
Carlito’s Way (Universal)
Casino (Universal)
The Crown: The Complete Fifth Season (Sony)
The Desperate Hours (Arrow)
The Edge of the World (Milestone)
EO (Criterion)
Golda (Decal)
Haunted Mansion 4K (Disney)
The Innocent (Criterion)
The Last Voyage of the Demeter (Universal)
No Bears (Criterion)
Passion (Film Movement)
Shortcomings (Sony)
Tod Browning’s Sideshow Shockers (Criterion)
The Way We Were 4K (Sony)