Looking for a gift idea for a movie lover? If you are, then you are in luck. I’ve compiled a list of Blu-rays and DVDs that stood out this past year. Thirteen films you should check out include Jurassic World, Pitch Perfect 2, Minions, Big Hero 6, Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, Ant-Man, Teen Beach Movie 2, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, Insurgent, Home, Paper Towns, Vikings Season 3 and Home Alone Ultimate Collector’s Edition.
Thirteen Blu-ray/DVD Gift Ideas
Jurassic World (review)
The Jurassic World theme park lets guests experience the thrill of witnessing actual dinosaurs, but something ferocious lurks behind the park’s attractions — a genetically modified dinosaur with savage capabilities. When the massive creature escapes, chaos erupts across the island. Now it’s up to Owen (Chris Pratt) and Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) to save the park’s tourists from an all-out prehistoric assault.
Pitch Perfect 2 (review)
The Barden Bellas are back in Pitch Perfect 2, the follow-up to 2012’s smash hit. The comedy is helmed by Elizabeth Banks, co-star and producer of Pitch Perfect, and produced by Paul Brooks, Max Handelman and Banks. Writer Kay Cannon returns to the team to pen the next chapter.
The Minions, breakout stars from “Despicable Me,” are presented in an origin story that showcases their unpredictable personality and physicality, and pairs them with equally memorable human characters. As it turns out, Minions have existed since the beginning of time. They have evolved from single (yellow) cell organisms into the familiar beings we know, and they live for a collective purpose: to seek out and serve the most despicable master they can find. Academy Award winner Sandra Bullock will lead the voice cast of the human characters as Scarlett Overkill, the world’s reigning super-villain of the 1960s.
Big Hero 6 (review)
Big Hero 6 is an action-packed comedy adventure that introduces Baymax, a lovable, personal companion robot, who forms a special bond with robotics prodigy Hiro Hamada. When a devastating turn of events catapults them into the midst of a dangerous plot unfolding in the streets of San Fransokyo, Hiro turns to Baymax and his diverse group of friends — adrenaline junky Go Go Tomago, neatnik Wasabi, chemistry whiz Honey Lemon and fanboy Fred — who transform into a band of unlikely heroes.
Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron (review)
Marvel Studios unleashes the next global phenomenon in the Marvel Cinematic Universe — Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron. Good intentions wreak havoc when Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) unwittingly creates Ultron (James Spader), a terrifying A.I. monster who vows to achieve world peace via mass extinction. Now Iron Man, Captain America (Chris Evans), Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) — alongside Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) and Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) — must reassemble to defeat Ultron and save mankind…if they can! This action-packed adventure is a mind-blowing blast!
The next evolution of the Marvel Cinematic Universe harnesses the tiniest but mightiest force know to man and introduces the newest member of the Avengers: Marvel’s Ant-man. Armed with the amazing ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, master thief Scott Lang must channel his inner hero and help his new mentor Dr. Hank Pym protect the secret behind his spectacular Ant-Man suit from a new generation of ruthless villains. With humanity’s fate in the balance, Pym and Lang must plan and pull off a daring heist against insurmountable odds. Filled with humor, awesome special effects and exclusive bonus features, this action-packed adventure takes you to new levels of pulse-pounding excitement.
Teen Beach Movie 2 (review)
Dive in and rock out with the hottest surf sequel under the sun. Now that summer’s over and school has begun, Brady (Ross Lynch) and Mack’s (Maia Mitchell) relationship seems headed for a wipeout — until Lela, Tanner and the “Wet Side Story” kids show up. Dazzled by the novelty and variety of the modern world, Lela wants to stay, but the real world and the “reel” world just don’t mix. Can Mack and Brady find the magic to get the kids home and get their own romance back on track before it’s too late?
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (review)
From Academy Award winning filmmaker Peter Jackson comes “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies,” the third in a trilogy of films adapting the enduringly popular masterpiece The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien. “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies” brings to an epic conclusion the adventures of Bilbo Baggins, Thorin Oakenshield and the Company of Dwarves. Having reclaimed their homeland from the Dragon Smaug, the Company has unwittingly unleashed a deadly force into the world. Enraged, Smaug rains his fiery wrath down upon the defenseless men, women and children of Lake-town. Obsessed above all else with his reclaimed treasure, Thorin sacrifices friendship and honor to hoard it as Bilbo’s frantic attempts to make him see reason drive the Hobbit towards a desperate and dangerous choice. But there are even greater dangers ahead. Unseen by any but the Wizard Gandalf, the great enemy Sauron has sent forth legions of Orcs in a stealth attack upon the Lonely Mountain. As darkness converges on their escalating conflict, the races of Dwarves, Elves and Men must decide — unite or be destroyed. Bilbo finds himself fighting for his life and the lives of his friends in the epic Battle of the Five Armies, as the future of Middle-earth hangs in the balance.
The Divergent Series: Insurgent raises the stakes for Tris (Woodley) as she searches for answers and allies in this star-powered, action-packed second installment of the Divergent series. On the run and targeted by ruthless faction leader Jeanine (Kate Winslet), Tris fights to protect the people she loves, facing one impossible challenge after another as she and Four (James) race to unlock the truth about the past — and ultimately the future — of their world.
When Oh, a loveable misfit from another planet, lands on Earth and finds himself on the run from his own people, he forms an unlikely friendship with an adventurous girl named Tip who is on a quest of her own. Through a series of comic adventures with Tip, Oh comes to understand that being different and making mistakes is all part of being human. And while he changes her planet and she changes his world, they discover the true meaning of the word home.
Paper Towns (review)
Adapted from the bestselling novel by author John Green (The Fault in Our Stars), Paper Towns is a coming-of-age story centering on Quentin and his enigmatic neighbor Margo, who loved mysteries so much she became one. After taking him on an all-night adventure through their hometown, Margo suddenly disappears — leaving behind cryptic clues for Quentin to decipher. The search leads Quentin and his quick-witted friends on an exhilarating adventure that is equal parts hilarious and moving. Ultimately, to track down Margo, Quentin must find a deeper understanding of true friendship — and true love.
Vikings Season 3 (review)
Prepare to raid and wage battle once again, in an ancient kingdom dominated by vengeance, lust and thrilling conquest, in Season 3 of Vikings. The gripping family saga of Ragnar, Rollo, Lagertha and Bjorn continues as loyalties are questioned and bonds of blood are tested. Now king of his people, Ragnar remains a restless wanderer, leading his band of Norse warriors on epic adventures from the shores of Essex to the mythical city of Paris. But stunning betrayals and hidden dangers will test Ragnar’s courage and strength like never before. The Season 3 Blu-ray and DVD include nearly two hours of extra content sure to please the most die-hard fans of the series.
Home Alone Ultimate Collector’s Edition (review)
This must-have gift set includes all five films packed together in a collectible paint can full of limited edition movie memorabilia that will keep the whole family excited including a McCallister Christmas ornament, Kevin’s battle plan for the Wet Bandits, his tarantula and a wanted poster of the thieves — Harry (Joe Pesci) and Marv (Daniel Stern) — and more!