In movies the best bet looks to be Legendary Amazons, based on the historical Yang family of the Song Dynasty. There have been a number of previous movies made about this group of 11th century women generals, of which the most well known is probably 1972’s 14 Amazons from The Shaw Brothers. Like the Shaw Brothers, the action in this latest incarnation is a bit over the top, relying heavily on wire work and springboards, but it looks to be quite a fun movie. On the other hand, the less said about Alien Dawn the better; it is every bit as campy, but this one they were trying to be serious.
I still can’t believe Fox cancelled it, but because they did we have Alcatraz: The Complete Series coming out this week, instead of just season 1. In fact, while Fox still maintains the Alcatraz home page, when you go there all you get are New Girl videos with a paragraph at the bottom of the page about the show. Hence the alternate link to a fan site. Touch got renewed though, so for that one we do get Touch: The Complete First Season as well as an actual web site. A documentary series worth noting that comes out this week is Stephen Hawking: Brave New World, a UK science series that is really good.
For western animation, Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted hits the shelves, with quite a good voice cast. And lets face it, Dreamworks animation projects are usually some of the best.
In anime, Someday’s Dreamers II Sora returns to a Japan where you need both training and an official license to practice magic. The next generation of Suzuki magic users, Sora, has no problem with the spells but is completely confused by some of her fellow students, because the people in Tokyo are nothing like the folks in the small village she grew up in. Ga-Rei-Zero: The Complete Collection is also from 2008, and also about magic users, but this time it is two sisters who battle evil as part of an elite anti-demon task force. This one was made by the people who did Full Metal Panic, and considering how much I loved that series (3 series in total, actually), I am really looking forward to this one.
In IDOLM@STER: Xenoglossia season 1, the moon was shattered into thousands of large rocks a hundred years ago, but they don’t fall onto the Earth so most folks don’t think about it. When a young aspiring singer gets taken on by an IDOL company with visions of advancing her career she has no idea that in this case I.D.O.L. is an acronym for the giant robot she will be piloting to defend Earth from those rocks.
The rest of the Anime titles coming out this week are re-releases of some classic works of earlier years. My favorite of these selection has to be Tenchi Universe, the entire 26 episodes in a single box set. This series was not season two or three of the original, they retold the entire Tenchi story in an alternate universe. What didn’t change? The names, the back stories (the space pirate girl is still a space pirate) and appearances of the characters, and the fact that Tenchi has only bad luck whatever the situation. Other re-releases this time around include Casshan: Robot Hunter Casshern about the guy trying to stop his dad’s killer robots, Hellsing Ultimate: Volumes 1-4, yes, any time you see the name Hellsing with or without the Von you can expect Vampires, and Galaxy Express 999: Eternal Fantasy.