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 The Geek's Library:

The Geek's library contains information and reviews of various Disney books, Blu-rays, DVDs, and CDs that I have read/watched over the years.

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Solo: A Star Wars Story

Solo: A Star Wars Story is now available on several home video formats and digitally. This stand-alone Star Wars film explores the back story of Han Solo including his first meeting with Chewbacca as well as how he acquired the Millennium Falcon. For more on the film check out Lee’s Review from the theatrical release as well as our coverage of the press conference back in May.

Release date: 2018-09-25

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Nightmare Before Christmas 25th Anniversary

Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas turns twenty-five this October and to celebrate the occasion Disney has released a new home video version on Blu-ray/Digital HD/DVD. This stop-motion classic shares the adventure of Jack Skellington’s attempt to bring Christmas to Halloween Town. New with this release is the option to turn on a sing-along mode for all the songs.

Release date: 2018-09-05

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Incredibles 2

Disney/Pixar’s the Incredibles 2 is available on home video in various formats. If you missed the film in theaters earlier this summer, it picks up where the original 2004 film leaves off. In this installment Helen takes the lead in a campaign to bring Supers back and battle a new villain, Screenslaver, which leaves Bob handle the family which includes learning about Jack Jack’s emerging powers.

This initial home video release features a wide variety of bonus features to choose from ranging from traditional featurettes and deleted scenes to the theatrical short Bao and a new mini-movie called Auntie Edna.

Release date: 2018-11-06

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Avengers: Infinity War

I thought the bonus material on the whole was average. The featurettes did not really seem to delve into the topics they covered to any real depth and some of the material was repeated between them. They fall short of the high bar Lucasfilm set with the recent Star Wars releases featuring full length making of documentaries.

Release date: 2018-08-14

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Peter Pan (Walt Disney Signature Collection)

Walt Disney’s Classic Animated Feature Peter Pan returns to home video as a Walt Disney Signature Collection Release to mark the 65th Anniversary of the release of the film. There are four new bonus features as well as a large assortment of classic bonus features included.

Release date: 2018-06-05

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Black Panther

The Black Panther was released in theaters in February and has been in the top 10 every week since, even this past weekend after nearly 90 days on the big screen. Now you can bring the Black Panther home with the digital HD and Blu-ray release.

This installment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe takes you to Wakanda and shares the story of Prince T’Challa’s (The Black Panther’s) ascension to the throne and struggles he faced after the tragic death of his father forced him into the leadership role.

Release date: 2018-05-15

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Star Wars: The Last Jedi

The home video release includes several hours of bonus material. This material varies by the format you choose, so check with the disc specs if you are interested in a particular feature:

  • The Director and the Jedi – This is the highlight of the bonus features. It clocks in at just over an hour and a half and features an extended look at the creation of the film. This documentary explores some of the challenges the film makers encountered with the large production ranging from budget to scheduling to set creation to the actors themselves. It spends a good amount of time on Mark Hamill and his reservations for his character in the film. For a couple of clips of the documentary here is the announcement – The Director and the Jedi
  • Balance of the Force – This 10 minute feature looks at some of the mythology of the force. I did not find it that engaging of a piece.
  • Scene Breakdowns – The scenes are explored in detail in this 30 minute piece. They are Lighting the Spark: Creating the Space Battle, Snoke and Mirrors, Showdown on Crait. Each one looks at a different challenge the team encountered. For the first it was how to capture the space battle, the second motion capture and the Snoke character and the third what Crait would be and how to create the climactic battle.
  • Andy Serkis Live! (One Night Only) – Two sequences from the film showing Andy Serkis on set performances of Snoke that were captured. It is interesting looking at how the motion capture/CG creation utilizes these performances in the final product.
  • Deleted Scenes – There are 14 deleted scenes included in the bonus material. You have two options for each, one to just watch the scene and a second to feature the director’s commentary and some explanation of the scene and why it did not make it into the final film.
  • Audio Commentary & Score Only – There are two alternative audio tracks. One is a full length commentary by Rain Johnson and the second is a score only version available exclusively on Movies Anywhere


Release date: 2018-03-27

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Thor: Ragnarok

Marvel’s Thor: Ragnarok is now on home video in various formats (DVD/Blu-Ray/4K/Digital HD/Movies Anywhere). In this third Thor film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe Thor is in a race to return to Asgard to save his home world from destruction at the hands of Hela (his sister and the Goddess of Death).

Release date: 2018-03-06

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Coco

Disney-Pixar’s Coco is now available on several home video formats. The film takes you on a journey with Miguel to the land of the dead where he learns the history of his family’s stories and traditions. The musical adventure celebrates family and remembering your ancestors.

There is a wealth of bonus material available on this first home video release. The sum is over 2 hours and the features have a heavy focus on how the film is inspired by and reflects the Mexican/Latino Culture and Traditions. Several pieces highlight the creative team’s trip to Mexico where they were immersed in the culture and families. The bonus features explore several components of the film including the characters, music, fashion/clothing, Dante, and the Guitar. There are seven deleted scenes with introductions/descriptions in this release. Plus several trailers, a couple how to featurettes, full length commentary, a music video and more. For a complete listing with descriptions of what is included on this home video release of Coco visit the initial press release.

Release date: 2018-02-27

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Lady and the Tramp

Lady and the Tramp returns to home video with a Walt Disney Signature Collection Release. This time available on DVD, Blu-ray and Digital (moviesanywhere).

Release date: 2018-02-27

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Cars 3

Cars 3 rolls onto Home Video on November 7th in various formats/sets and is currently available on Digital HD/Movies Anywhere. If you missed the film in theaters this time around Lightning McQueen is faced with the reality of getting older and his racing days are numbered as a new generation of racers are taking over. He deals with the internal struggle over what his identity is and the next phase of his life. This film includes most of the cast from the original film and introduces several new characters. Cruz Ramirez is one of the new cars featured. She is a trainer who has been held back from being a racer and goes on the training adventure with Lightning.

Release date: 2017-11-07

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Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dean Men Tell No Tales is now on Digital HD/4K and will be on Blu-ray/DVD October 3, 2017. This is the fifth big screen adventure of Captain Jack Sparrow and crew. For those who have not seen it yet this film features a mix of new and returning characters as well as story lines. The main quest in this film is for the Trident of Poseidon. As always along the way there are double crosses, plot twists and daring escapes by Captain Jack Sparrow. We learn a little more about the backstories of the main characters such as where/how Jack Sparrow received his name. This film also comes full circle and concludes several story lines that have spanned the previous movies. If you enjoy the original films you will feel right at home with this one. The movie follows the same format and feel of the others.

Release date: 2017-10-03

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Lion King: Walt Disney Signature Collection

The Lion King is now available as a Walt Disney Signature Release Blu-ray/DVD/Digital HD. This release features the classic 1994 film that we all know and enjoy, a handful of new bonus features and many bonus features from the previous two DVD releases. I am sure you all know the story of the Lion King and have seen it numerous times so no plot summary is needed. It is always fun to revisit an “old friend” and watch the film again.

There are a handful of new bonus features on this release. I would have liked to have seen more as I felt these were on the short side and add only slightly to the release.

Release date: 2017-08-29

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Disneynature Born in China

Disneynature released Born in China on Earth Day 2017 and the film is now available on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD. In this film you are taken to remote regions of China and follow a giant panda mother and her offspring, a golden snub-nosed monkey troop, and a snow leopard family. Plus a look at the red-crown crane family. For each family the film spans a year and shares their lives, struggles, and routines. As with all Disneynature films the settings are unique and inspiring. Freezing the picture for each to admire the view/background is incredible. As you would expect the giant pandas are interesting but I found the monkeys and snow leopards stories more compelling and interesting to watch. The pandas just sit around or climb and eat. The others tend to do more interesting behaviors.

Release date: 2017-08-29

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Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

For those who did not catch it in theaters this movie picks up soon after the first one ends and delves deeper into the characters back stories this time around. The Guardians now are becoming more of a family and struggling with that dynamic as they are thrust into saving the galaxy again. The movie features Vol. 2 of the mix tape and again a great classic soundtrack that is woven into the film.

Release date: 2017-08-22

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Cinderella (Live Action)

This live action retelling of the classic story is as entertaining on home video as it was in theaters. Here is my original post from April with my first impressions and overview of the film. On a second viewing I second my 1st impressions. To sum up my initial reaction I thought the film was faithful to the Disney animated version while carving out some themes of its own and bringing extra depth to some of the characters. If you are expecting a lot of singing and talking animals you will be disappointed, but if you are looking for a solid version of the film that references the original in many ways and is entertaining and can stand on its own you will enjoy it.

I took a look at the Blu-ray for the film and then used DisneyMoviesAnywhere for the extras. The reason for this is there are several deleted scenes that are only available on DisneyMoviesAnywhere.

All versions of the release include the Disney Animation Studios short, Frozen Fever. So if you did not pick up the Shorts Release a few weeks ago and want the short this is another way to add it to your library. No bonus material dealt with the short.

Release date: 2015-09-05

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Beauty and the Beast (Live Action)

The live action Beauty and the Beast comes to home video on June 6 in various formats (Blu-ray, DVD, Digital HD). If you missed the film in theaters, this film carries on the recent trend of re-telling classic Disney animated films in live action. The film holds true to the original story with some additional exploration into the back story and motivation of several characters. The music we all know is there plus a couple of new pieces written for this version.

Release date: 2017-06-06

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Bambi

Walt Disney’s 1942 classic Bambi celebrates its 75th anniversary this year. To mark the occasion a new signature collection release is available on Digital HD/Disney Movies Anywhere and will be on Blu-ray and DVD on June 6th. This release features a half dozen new bonus features as well as a slew of classic ones from previous releases. These include two new deleted scenes, Bambi’s Ice and Snow plus The Grasshopper in addition to several from previous releases. Out of the new material I found the Studio Stories featurette to be the most interesting. I always enjoy glimpses into the creation process of the films and learning what Walt and his team thought about. There is a nice featurette on Tyrus Wong who created background concept art for this film, Tyrus passed away in 2016 at age 106. Continuing the recent trend there is an Oswald the Lucky Rabbit short, “Africa Before Dark” included in addition to the re-release of “The Old Mill” short. The classic material includes an in depth (over an hour) exploration of the creation of the film in “The Making of Bambi: A Prince Is Born”. This making of documentary includes interviews with several legendary animators who are no longer with us so having that record and listening to them talk about the film was a treat to revisit.

Release date: 2017-06-06

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Moana

Moana has arrived on home video (Blu-ray, Digital HD, Disney Movies Anywhere, DVD) with a wide assortment of bonus material. The film takes you on an adventure with Moana who sets sail to save her people. She enlists the help of the demigod Maui and along with Hei Hei, a not so bright chicken) they sail across the ocean to return the heart of Te Fiti. The film is as enjoyable on home video as it was the big screen.

In addition to the “Inner Workings” short that preceded the film in theaters is another short called “Maui Mini-Movie: Gone Fishing”, and just as the title says it features a fishing experience for Maui. This home video release includes a large selection of bonus material totaling around 2 hours (not including the commentary). The material includes behind the scenes, deleted scenes, music featurettes and a full audio commentary by John Musker and Ron Clements the film’s directors.

Release date: 2017-03-07

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Doctor Strange

Marvel’s Doctor Strange is now on Digital HD and will be on Blu-ray February 28th. This journey into the Marvel Cinematic Universe introduces us to Dr. Stephen Strange. He is a world famous neurosurgeon who suffers a tragic car accident that renders his hands useless. After being frustrated with the results of traditional medicine to regain full use of his hands he travels to Kamar-Taj for a cure. There he discovers the mystical arts and becomes a sorcerer who engages in a battle with dark forces trying to destroy our reality.

The bonus features on this release total around 90 minutes and encompass the traditional offerings of deleted scenes (5 of them), gag reel, cast interviews, a look at the various aspects of making the film (music, location, costumes, etc.), as well as a couple pieces on the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe. For more details on what is included here is the original announcement/press release.

Release date: 2017-02-28

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Pinocchio (Walt Disney Signature Collection)

The Signature Edition of Pinocchio is now available on Digital HD/Disney Movies Anywhere and will be on Blu-ray and DVD the end of the month (Jan 31st). This is the film’s first time on digital release. The last wide release on home video was the platinum edition in 2009 that featured Blu-ray and DVD.

This time around the release includes a small number of new bonus features and several classic bonus features from previous releases. The film is presented in a number of ways too, original, commentary, singalong, and DisneyView. For full details on what is included and the technical specifications here is the initial press release.

Release date: 2017-01-31

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Finding Dory

In addition to the film the short, “Piper”, is included and a large array of bonus material. The breadth of bonus material on this release is far above the norm for most first releases. Here is a quick list with number of features and approximate time to give an overview.

Exclusive Bonus 1 (~16 min)
Shorts 2 (8 minutes)
Beyond the Story 1 (3 minutes)
Behind the Scenes – 2 (13+ minutes)
Bonus Scenes – 10 (50+ minutes)
Casts & Crew – 2 (~7 minutes)
Music & More – 1 (~ 5 minutes)
– 7 (13+ minutes plus the full length audio commentary)
Promos & Trailers – 5 (10+ minutes)


Release date: 2016-11-15

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Beauty and the Beast 25th Anniversary Edition

Disney Beauty and the Beast turns 25 this year and to mark the anniversary a Walt Disney Signature Collection edition has been released on Home Video. This release features an assortment of packages including Blu-Ray, DVD and Digital HD through Disney Movies Anywhere. For full specs and info on the release here is the original press release with details.

Most of us disneygeeks already own numerous versions of the film on vhs, dvd and blu-ray already, so the question comes down to what is different this time around. There are three versions of the film included on the Blu-ray and Digital releases – The original theatrical, special edition and sing-along. As well as a handful of new bonus features.

Release date: 2016-09-20

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Aladdin

I always ask for more when it comes to bonus material and with the Diamond Edition of Aladdin Disney has delivered. It starts with the bonus features that were on the platinum edition DVD and builds on them with new ones. It includes the full range of material in A Diamond in the Rough: the Making of Aladdin. New for this release are a couple tributes to Robin Williams. First up, Genie 101 a guide to the impressions the Genie does. Also an over 8 minute piece showcasing some of the Genie Outtakes. Interesting no video of Robin Williams, instead it features sketches and concept art to go with them. There is an unboxing video done by a Disney Channel’s Joey Bragg which if you can make it through the piece features some of the cameos (Ron & John, Sebastian, and the Beast) and even hidden Mickeys. There is also a 20 minute piece on bringing Aladdin to Broadway. The DisneyMoviesAnywhere exclusive for this release is a deleted song titled “My Finest Hour”.

Release date: 2015-10-13

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Marvel Antman

Ant-Man is now available on DisneyMoviesAnywhere and will be on Blu-ray on December 8th. This film was initially released in theaters in June 2015. It is part heist, part comedy, and part Marvel superhero leading to an entertaining adventure

Release date: 2015-08-15

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