This Week In Home Entertainment: Disney's Hercules, The Blacklist And More

By Jessica Rawden 2014-08-12 19:29:04discussion comments
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Hercules Box
Hercules Blu-ray
Disney’s 35th original animated feature is not one of the most memorable in the company’s canon. Regardless, it is an enjoyable—and strikingly weird—addition to the Disney universe, one that can now be enjoyed in full High Definition glory. Otherwise, the musical spectacle is about the same as it ever was.

Back when Disney wasn’t searching so hard for high-end celebrity voice talent, a hero was born in 24: Live Another Day actor Tate Donavon, who plays the titular character in Disney’s Greek saga. Early in the film, a baby Hercules is kidnapped and sent to Earth, where he is raised by humans, maintaining his superhuman strength. However, while Hercules is coming of age, Hades (James Woods) is interested in ensuring he doesn’t live a day longer. With some comic relief from trainer Philoctetes (Danny DeVito), love interest Meg (Susan Egan) and goofy minions Pain and Panic (Bobcat Goldthwait and Matt Frewer), Hercules offers enough laughs for the whole family.

What’s possibly most enjoyable about Hercules is its very adult women. The muses are sassy, and Meg is unlike most of the other princess archetypes in the Disney canon. She’s not wide-eyed or filled with wonder, and is instead a real, complicated love interest. She’s a great foil to Hercules, who himself at first mimics what we’ve come to expect from a strong dude, before reaching instead himself and becoming something mentally stronger. But you know all this. Let’s talk about what Hercules offers on Blu-ray.

It looks like Disney is over giving its brand new sets the "Diamond Edition" treatment. Instead, the Blu-ray release is called a "Special Edition," although really, the biggest thing that is special with the set is that it is available on Blu-ray for the first time. More on the other benefits and extras, below.

Best Special Feature: Probably wisely, Disney has cut back on the number of extras available with their non-historic features. This time around, the recent sing-a-long addition to the extras is available, but the best bonus feature is probably "The Making of Hercules," which was also available with the DVD set back in 2000. The behind-the-scenes look focuses on the voice actors and the music Alan Menken and a slew of excellent R&B singers created for Hercules.

Other Extras:
"No Importa La Distancia" Music Video with Ricky Martin
From Zero To Hero Sing-Along
DVD and Digital Copy
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