Movie News & Reviews

‘Angry Birds,’ crazy villains featured in new DVD releases

Red is the star of “The Angry Birds Movie.”
Red is the star of “The Angry Birds Movie.” Rovio Animation

This week’s new DVD releases range from birds to bats.

“The Angry Birds Movie” Grade 1/2: You’ll know why the birds are so mad after seeing “The Angry Birds Movie.” They’ve been saddled with a thin story, juvenile writing and a look that might be great for flying through the air but otherwise looks a little creepy.

The flying havoc that mimics the popular video game comes after a group of seagoing green pigs pays a visit to the quiet bird community. The only disruption is Red (Jason Sudeikis), a bird with anger management issues, who believes the pigs are up to no good.

“Angry Birds” is loaded with so many problems it would be easy to get mad about wasting your time at the movie. The only saving grace is that it should keep anyone under the age of 6 entertained. Of course, you can do the same thing with the video game.

“Gotham: The Complete Second Season” Grade : The TV series set during the years before Batman starts fighting crime is one of the best adaptations of comic book characters to screen. Its dark look and even darker tone make it a compelling weekly adventure.

What makes the show so good is that the villains are even more interesting than the heroes.

Robin Lord Taylor steals every scene as the Penguin. This season gives him a chance to go from a broken man to the heartless killer that he plays so well.

Equally as interesting are Cory Michael Smith as Edward Nygma/The Riddler and Camren Bicondova as Selina Kyle/Catwoman. Even the addition of BD Wong as Hugo Strange added more levels to the insanity.

This is a unique take on the Batman story and that alone makes it worthy of your time.

Also new on Aug. 16:

▪ “God’s Not Dead 2”: A teacher (Melissa Joan Hart) must defend her actions in court.

▪ “Shooting the Prodigal”: A young Jewish filmmaker tries to help a Baptist preacher make a movie based on the story of the Prodigal Son.

▪ “Power Rangers Megaforce: The Complete Season”: The Rangers have only one hope to stop Prince Vekar.

▪ “The Vampire Diaries: The Complete Seventh Season”: Some characters will bounce back while others won’t after saying farewell to Elena Gilbert.

▪ “Almost Holy”: Pastor fights child homelessness by stealing street children.

▪ “Sundown”: Spring break goes bad for two friends who get involved with gangsters.

▪ “11 Minutes”: A series of events unfolds over an 11-minute span.

▪ “Frontline: Business of Disaster”: Documentary on how rebuilding efforts have left some communities in chaos.

▪ “A Cinderella Story: If the Shoe Fits”: Modern take on the classic tale starring Sofia Carson.

▪ “Shimmer and Shine: Welcome to Zahramay Falls”: Visit the magical home of twin genies-in-training.

▪ “The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai”: This is the first time the ’80s movie has been available on Blu-ray.

▪ “The Affair: Season Two”: Series offers different views on a couple’s relationship.

▪ “Microwave Massacre”: Horror film about a man who disposes of his dead wife’s body using the microwave.

▪ “American Experience: The Boys of ’36”: Story of the American rowing team that triumphed in Nazi Germany.

▪ “Session 9”: Abandoned mental hospital gets five new visitors.

Available Aug. 16 on Digital HD:

▪ “Me Before You”: Young woman (Emilia Clarke) falls for the paralyzed man she’s been hired to accompany.

▪ “Money Monster”: Irate investor takes over a cable money show and threatens to set off a massive explosion.

▪ “Love & Friendship”: Film based on the Jane Austen novella “Lady Susan.”

Rick Bentley: 559-441-6355, @RickBentley1