This week: Bryan Singer adapts the British fairy tale of "Jack and the Beanstalk" into the underappreciated action-adventure "Jack the Giant Slayer," starring Nicholas Hoult, Eleanor Tomlinson and Ewan McGregor.
Also new this week is the coming-of-age comedy "21 & Over," the psychosexual drama "Stoker" with Nicole Kidman and Mia Wasikowska, the quirky morality play "The Brass Teapot" with Juno Temple and the celebrity-riddled anthology film "Movie 43" starring, well, half of Hollywood.
'Jack the Giant Slayer'
Box Office: $65 million
Rotten Tomatoes: 52% Rotten
Storyline: Bryan Singer's update on the classic fairy tale has the titular farmhand (Nicholas Hoult) unwittingly reigniting an ancient war between humans and giants when his magical beanstalk bridges their two worlds. As the giants try to reclaim the land they once lost, Jack is forced to fight for his kingdom and the love of a princess (Eleanor Tomlinson) as he comes face-to-face with towering warriors he thought only existed in legend. Stanley Tucci, Ian McShane, Ewan McGregor and Bill Nighy are also on board for the adventure.
Extras!: Both the DVD and Blu-ray contain a gag reel and deleted scenes; BD exclusives include the "Become a Giant Slayer" interactive experience. A Blu-ray 3D combo pack is also available and is recommended for those that want to come closer to the theatrical experience.
We Say: "Jack the Giant Slayer" took a hit at the box office in part because of some watered-down trailers prior to release that unfortunately made it look like a kiddie flick. In truth, this PG-13 adventure has some exciting battle sequences, especially when the giants land on earth. Whether he's playing an emo zombie in "Warm Bodies" or the Jack of folklore, Nicholas Hoult always charms; only Ewan McGregor seems less than enthused about this fantastical journey, which is worth exploring at home.
'21 & Over'
Box Office: $26 million
Rotten Tomatoes: 27% Rotten
Storyline: Straight-A college student Jeff Chang (Justin Chon) gets a surprise visit from his two best buds (Skylar Astin and Miles Teller) for his 21st birthday, which happens to be the day before Jeff's important medical school interview. What was supposed to be "one beer" turns into a night of chaos and debauchery in this R-rated comedy from the writers of "The Hangover."
Extras!: Both the DVD and Blu-ray contain "Levels of Intoxication," "Tower of Power" and a gag reel.
We Say: This coming-of-age boozing comedy isn't consistently funny or outrageous enough to drink "The Hangover" under the table. In fact, it's not even as fun as "Project X," in which Teller also starred. The movie could find a second life on video as a convincing birth control incentive, but not as a cult comedy.
Box Office: $1.7 million
Rotten Tomatoes: 67% Fresh
Storyline: After India's (Mia Wasikowska) father dies in an auto accident, the uncle (Matthew Goode) she never knew she had comes to live with her and her emotionally frazzled mother (Nicole Kidman). India suspects her mysterious, charming uncle has ulterior motives, but she nevertheless becomes increasingly infatuated with him in this dark drama directed by Park Chan-wook.
Extras!: Both the DVD and Blu-ray contain several behind-the-scenes featurettes, Emily Wells' performance of "Become the Color" and a free song download, an images gallery and more.
We Say: This complex psychosexual drama is unconventionally shot and unlike any other movie in recent memory. You never know where Chan-wook is going to take the audience next, but the three leads are more than willing to help their director mess with our heads. You'll be thinking about this stylish boilerplate film long after the end credits roll.
'The Brass Teapot'
Box Office: $6,997
Rotten Tomatoes: 26% Rotten
Storyline: A financially struggling couple (Juno Temple and Michael Angarano) discover a magic teapot that literally makes money out of thin air whenever they hurt themselves, but the teapot requires more and more pain the more they use it as their personal ATM machine. How far will they be willing to go?
Extras!: Both the DVD and Blu-ray contain an audio commentary, interviews, AXS TV: "A Look at 'The Brass Teapot'" and the movie's trailer.
We Say: Although Temple and Angarano make a convincing on-screen couple, it's hard to swallow the implausible premise. Even if you do, it's even more unbelievable to think that a sweet couple would turn into a sadomasochistic duo for cash. Money changes everything, we suppose, but it would have been more fun watching these two figure out a way to ingeniously circumvent the rules of the brass teapot and keep getting cash instead of the script's all-or-nothing approach to the titular metaphor for greed.
Box Office: $8.8 million
Rotten Tomatoes: 4% Rotten
Storyline: From producers Peter Farrelly and Charles Wessler comes this outrageous ensemble comedy featuring big stars (Hugh Jackman, Kate Winslet, Halle Berry, Naomi Watts, Emma Stone, Anna Faris and many more) unleashed and uncensored in different skits by 13 credited directors, including Farrelly, Elizabeth Banks, Brett Ratner and more.
Extras!: Both the DVD and Blu-ray contain the "Find Our Daughter" featurette and the movie's trailer.
We Say: This crude, scatological joke cannon features stars that deserve better slumming it for laughs … that rarely come. Whether it's Jackman with testicles growing out of his neck or Berry lopping her breasts in guacamole in a restaurant, you'll end up feeling sorry for the wasted talent instead of chuckling at the lowest of lowbrow humor.
Also New This Week:
"The Last Exorcism Part II"
"The Howling" Blu-ray