This Week In Home Entertainment: The Purge, After Earth, The Hangover Part III And More

By Jessica Rawden 2013-10-08 13:45:23discussion comments
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Much Ado About Nothing Blu-ray
Despite Much Ado About Nothing’s extremely small theatrical release, much has been written and spoken about the Shakespeare retelling. I peg most of this on the fact that fan–favorite Joss Whedon directed the film, cast the film, and mostly even shot the film at his Santa Monica residence. Most films aren’t birthed in a director’s backyard, but Much Ado About Nothing actually thrives in this environment.

The film follows the traditional story from Shakespeare’s play of the same name. It’s shot in black and white for effect and it features a lot of handheld camera work. Overall, the finished look of the film isn’t overly impressive, despite the black and white coloring giving Much Ado About Nothing a bit of charm. What works is the dialogue and its delivery, which comes to life straight off the pages of the original play.

Much Ado About Nothing stars a slew of famous faces and quite a few more faces fans will recognize but maybe not be able to place. Person of Interest and Angel’s Amy Acker and Angel’s Alexis Denisof play the quarrelsome Beatrice and Benedick, and Nathan Fillion, Clark Gregg, Reed Diamond, Sean Maher and Ashley Johnson, all pop up in the film, as well. Part of the fun is seeing who will show up and what role they will play. Much Ado About Nothing seems like a fun romp at Whedon’s home, and while we watch, it’s almost like we are a part of the fun, as well.

Shakespeare's plays typically end in a death or a marriage, and this one’s a comedy, so there’s not a ton of surprise in the plot. Despite its very modern setting, the film relies a lot on Shakespearean dialogue, which means if that’s not your cup of tea, this one won’t be worth a watch. Otherwise, feel free to delve right in. You might be pleasantly surprised, and it’s unlikely you’ll be disappointed.

You can order Much Ado About Nothing over at Amazon.

Best Special Feature: Lionsgate Home Entertainment’s set actually features a goodly amount of extras for a small release, many of them featuring Whedon. The whole process of putting together Much Ado About Nothing has been widely discussed, but the bonus feature “Much Ado About Making Nothing” hones in on Whedon’s ideas, the actors’ involvement, and even how the producers became involved. It’s pretty cool that this film started when Whedon began putting together Sunday afternoon gatherings where friends would come over and read Shakespeare.

The hand camera work and the black and white footage are also discussed for quite a while during the extra. Whedon explains that the black and white was a stylistic choice, but later it helped a lot more because it covered up glaring images, like giant orange lawn mowers, etc. Finally, Nathan Fillion is also amusing in this segment because he talks about how difficult Shakespeare is and how he tried to chicken out.

Other Special Features:
Director’s Commentary with Joss Whedon
Commentary with Cast & Joss Whedon
“Bus Ado About Nothing”
“Sigh No More” music video
discussion
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