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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Sports > Baseball > History > Comedy > Hockey > Golf > Astros 50th Anniversary Collector’s Edition (MLB/A&E DVD Box Set)/Goon (2011/Magnolia/MagNet DVD)/Highlights Of The 2012 Masters Tournament (A&E/New Video DVD)

Astros 50th Anniversary Collector’s Edition (MLB/A&E DVD Box Set)/Goon (2011/Magnolia/MagNet DVD)/Highlights Of The 2012 Masters Tournament (A&E/New Video DVD)


Picture: C+     Sound: C+     Extras: C+     Main Programs: B/C/B-



Now for more sports related releases…



The great series of Major League Baseball DVD box sets from A&E, the most formidable box set series of its kind and on any sport, continues with the Astros 50th Anniversary Collector’s Edition.  The Houston team, Texas’ best baseball team, includes four disc of four of their most historic games and game moments including Nolan Ryan’s 5th No-Hitter on 9/26/81, Mike Scott’s No-Hitter Clinches Division play(s) on 9/25/86, 2005 NLDS Clincher from October 9 and Craig Biggio’s 3,000th Hit on 6/28/07.  We also get a fifth single DVD in Astros Memories rounding out the coverage and celebration of the team’s many successes.


As usual, A&E has done a top rate job and made yet another collector’s item that is also of reference caliber.  Any fan of the team or baseball overall will not be disappointed.  All the extras are on the Astros Memories DVD and includes No Hitters Under The Dome, Dierker’s Diary: What Might Have Been, Bob Aspromonte’s Home Run Story, Craig Biggio’s Biggest Night, Bob Watson Speech, Dierker’s Diary: All-time Astros teams, Houston Midsummer Classics and Nolan Ryan In The Gym.



Michael Dowse’s Goon (2011) is actually a narrative comedy about hockey co-written by Jay Baruchel and Evan Goldberg (Superbad, Pineapple Express, both reviewed elsewhere on this site) with Seann William Scott and Liev Schreiber as rivals in this so-so comedy that seems as interested in squeezing in obscenities and obscene jokes into the dialogue as laying out any kind of story, but here it is.  Scott plays Doug, who works as a bouncer but wants more.


Hockey might make him a moneymaking star of some sort, but he has plenty of personal and professional obstacles, though a tragically hip friend (Baruchel also in an acting turn here) intends to help him.  However, they both may need more help than they realize and Doug has a permanent rival (Schreiber) who can’t stand him.


Eugene Levy shows up as Doug’s father, but as funny as these actors can be and though some moments here work, this was too one-note and disappointing, yet it captured the vicious side of hockey enough that I would not be surprised if it became some kind of cult item down the line.  See it for yourself.


Extras include an HDNet piece about it, Hockey Cards, Trailers, feature length audio commentary by Dowse & Baruchel, Goalie Audition, Fighting 101, Deleted Scenes, Outtake/Blooper Reel and Power Play Mode for more behind the scenes footage.



Finally we have Highlights Of The 2012 Masters Tournament, the quality follow-up to the 2011 Highlights DVD we covered not that long ago:




This time, Bubba Watson, Tiger Williams, Fred Couples, Phil Mickelson and Louis Oosthuizen competing for the title and it is a nice record of the event that fans will appreciate.  Like its predecessor, it is smart and shows you why people love this game and are not bored by it.  There is also a certain sense of pride, so it is a go to disc for those interested in the subject.  I only wonder why there is no Blu-ray version yet.  Extras include Big 3 Press Conference, Ceremonial Opening Tee Shot, Outdoor Green Jacket Ceremony and Champion’s Press Conference.



The 1.33 X 1 image on the vintage Astros games are the equal of the footage on the anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image on the Astros Memories DVD, as well as the anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image on both the Goon and Masters DVDs.  They have their softness and detail issues, but are not awful, though they could have been better (especially Goon and Masters) but they’ll do and playback is just fine overall for the format.


The lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 mix on Goon should be better than the lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo on the other DVDs, but the mix is not very wide-ranging nor does it offer a consistent soundfield.  However, it might sound better on Blu-ray.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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