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Category:    Home > Reviews > Comedy > Exploitation > Teens > Horror > Satire > Drama > Canada > Poland > TV Sitcom > Superheroes > Stargirl: The Complete First Season (2020/Warner Blu-ray Set)

American Pie: Girls' Rules (2020/Universal DVD)/Brutal Massacre: A Comedy (2007/MVD/Mena Blu-ray w/DVD)/Dancing Dogs Of Dombrova (2018/Film Movement DVD)/Mom: The Complete Seventh Season (2019 - 2020/Warner Archive DVD Set)/Stargirl: The Complete First Season (2020/Warner Blu-ray Set)

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

PLEASE NOTE: The Mom DVD set is now only available from Warner Bros. through their Warner Archive series and can be ordered from the link below.

Some may say comedy is relative, but sometimes it is just unfunny and fake, as we'll see in some of these new releases, while a few at least try...

Mike Elliott's American Pie: Girls' Rules (2020) is the extremely awful, lame, weak, dumb, stupid, unnecessary, stale and pointless continuation of a franchise that should have ended long ago, but this time, the idea is to feign strong females and promise something funny. Instead, it is repetitive, goofy, allows its actors to be boring with nothing to do, nothing is new here and the multi-ethnic intents add nothing. The script plays like it was written by a formula software program, the actors look tired and this is even shot and edited in a very sloppy way.

I hope these actors find a better project.

There are unsurprisingly no extras.

Brutal Massacre: A Comedy (2007) gets the HD treatment in this new collectible Blu-ray/DVD combo pack from Mena Films. The hilarious indie horror spoof film is a must watch for horror fans as it features many big names in the horror industry including David Naughton (An American Werewolf in London), Brian O'Halloran (Clerks), Gerry Bednob, the late Gunnar Hansen (Texas Chainsaw Massacre), Ellen Sandweiss, and Ken Foree (Dawn of the Dead, The Devil's Rejects).

The film is a mockumentary that follows a horror auteur Harry Penderecki (Naughton). Once considered a horror legend, with a string of B-Movie hits like Bowel Movement, People Pesticide and I'll Take the Ring Back and the Finger Too, he now finds himself on the outside looking in at Hollywood. Determined to make a comeback, Penderecki returns to direct what he believes will be his ultimate masterpiece, Brutal Massacre. Follow along with the documentary crew to discover whether Harry will reassert his genius, or remain a relic of the '80s.

Special Features include:

a Photo Gallery

Behind the Scenes

LMB Poster Gallery

Deleted Scenes

On The Set


Weekend of Horrors Panel

What Happened Was True

and an Audio Commentary with Writer/Director Stevan Mena.

Zack Bernbaum's The Dancing Dogs Of Dombrova (2018) is a Canadian comedy about a brother and sister who go to a Polish town, only to find all kinds of obstacles in bringing the remains of their grandmother's beloved dog back home. Not a dark comedy, but also not much of a comedy at all, it is forgettable, is awful as a 'fish out of water' comedy and is a little too self-impressed to start up anything that works.

For that matter, it has no sense of the kind of comedy that comes uniquely from Canada, so it is just as empty as the train station the duo arrives at. It is a bad sign of things to come.

There are no extras.

As we were working on this new Mom: The Complete Seventh Season (2019 - 2020) DVD set, the shocking news arrived that co-star Anna Faris was leaving the show just as the next season was going to start shooting. Still a hit series, we really liked how it started, as this review of the debut season shows:


Sadly by this time, the show has become a shell of itself, has nothing new to say, show or do and has become just plain bad. I just wonder why Faris did not drop out sooner, or did she see the next set of teleplays and said 'enough is enough' or the like. All 20 half-hour shows are here on only 2 DVDs and at this point, this is for fans only. Wonder what they think.

There are no extras, but the show is winding down, so we cannot expect much at this point.

Last and sometimes least, we have Stargirl: The Complete First Season (2020) which shows that the Greg Berlanti DC Comics shows are going to auto pilot and Supergirl was just announced as being in its final season. So can the team behind all these shows finally launch a new female superhero and make it work? No.

The show has many problems that used to help this cycle of DC TV, including a consistent idea of comedy, some good use of color and taking the characters seriously enough. Well, no more. Instead, this is a condescending tween-fest that actually says the older DC Superheroes are weak, useless, obsolete and cannot cut it against more dangerous villains. That's a slap in the face of the DC history, then we get two gals taking over for Starman and Wildcat, the latter of which is not that old a character versus the original line-up DC established in the 1930s and 1940s.

So in effect, the makers are on auto-pilot and have given up on the universe in the worst kind of throwback which makes this show a package deal, wastes all this talent and time (Luke Wilson is one of the few familiar faces) and we might as well be back in the jokey days of bad superhero movies and TV where all the actors are lame, out of shape and look like they are wearing pajamas and adult diapers. Only the outfits seem modern here, but even the new style is played out.

See at your own risk.

Extras only include a slip of paper with an episode guide.

Now for playback performance. Brutal Massacre is presented in a new 1080p high definition transfer with a widescreen aspect ratio of 1.78:1 and a MPEG-4 AVC Codec. The audio mixes are in lossy English Dolby Digital 5.1 and 2.0 Stereo respectively. Also included is an anamorphically enhanced, standard definition DVD version of the film with similar (yet compressed) audio and video.

The 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer on the HD-shot Stargirl episodes have some good color, but also their issues with a little motion blur, sometimes detail limits and sometimes darker than they need to be. Such shots can backfire.

The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image on Pie, Mom and especially 2.35 X 1 anamorphic image on Dogs are soft, have motion blur and just don't look too great. Mom would at least benefit from a Blu-ray, but the others are a little bit of a mixed bag and the texting images on Pie are lame and obnoxious.

As for sound, Stargirl has DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mixes on each episode and that is the default highlight of a very disappointing set. As good as anything here (by default) makes this the sonic champ by an extremely thin margin.

The lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 mixes on Pie, Mom and Dogs are all surprisingly weak, plus the lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo also included on Dogs is even worse and weaker. Just be careful of high playback volumes and volume switching.

To order either the Warner Archive Mom DVD set or the wide release Stargirl Blu-ray set, go to this link for them and many more great web-exclusive releases at:


- Nicholas Sheffo and James Lockhart (Massacre)



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