Last fall, LAIKA’s third stop-motion feature The Boxtrolls proved once again that there is room for all genres of animation on the box-office charts. Painstakingly hand-crafted and augmented with inventive cinematography, stereoscopics and seamless CG elements combined with a unique story plucked from Alan Snow’s Here Be Monsters! helped win over audiences and earned the neo-Victorian fantasy a 13-strong majority of Annie Awards nominations. Directed by Graham Annable and Anthony Stacchi, the film centers on a young boy raised by the misunderstood Boxtrolls who, with the help of a plucky little rich girl, infiltrates the surface world to face off with a power-hungry exterminator to save his unconventional family. The adventure comes home this week thanks to Universal, on DVD for $29.98.
Isaac Hempstead Wright, Elle Fanning, Sir Ben Kingsley and Jared Harris lead the voice cast, which also includes Toni Collette, Richard Ayoade, Nick Frost, Tracy Morgan and Simon Pegg. Special features include behind-the-scenes looks at voice recording, character building, the studio’s distinctive Rapid Prototyping process and challenges like the ballroom dance and the villain’s giant Mecha Drill; plus five additional featurettes (The Nature of Creation, Trolls Right off the Tongue, Allergic to Easy, Let’s Dance, On the Shoulders of Giants) and directors’ commentary. The Blu-ray ($34.98) and Blu-ray 3D ($49.98) combo packs also include preliminary animatics with directors’ commentary. [January 20]
Also out this week:
The Magic School Bus: Season One [Scholastic, $19.97] Miss Frizzle takes her class on imaginative learning adventures in her magic bus.
Naruto Shippuden Uncut Set 21 [VIZ,$44.82] Two-disc, 13-episode set catches up with Naruto, Sasuke and the rest during the events of the Fourth Great Ninja War.
Ninjago Masters of Spinjitzu Rebooted: Fall of the Golden Master [Warner, $14.98] The defeated Overlord’s spirit stirs up trouble by taking over the city’s electric grid, bent on revenge.
Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Tough Love [Lionsgate, $19.98] The outrageous matriarch makes her animated debut in a new adventure in which she sets out to save a youth center.