The Best of Blu-ray in 2016: Part Two

Following on from yesterday’s post, here are five more Blu-rays we particularly enjoyed this year:

the-martianThe Martian (also available on Ultra HD Blu-ray)

Another awards favourite, The Martian hit Blu-ray back in January and wowed audiences with its intelligent, scientific take on surviving the red planet. During a manned mission to Mars, Astronaut Mark Watney (Matt Damon) is presumed dead after a fierce storm and left behind by his crew. But Watney has in fact survived, and finds himself stranded and alone on the hostile planet. With no help and barely any supplies, he must draw upon his ingenuity, wit and spirit to subsist and find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive. Special features include interviews with director Ridley Scott and original author Andy Weir, and mockumentaries based on the events in the film.

the-hateful-eightThe Hateful Eight

The Hateful Eight follows the steadily ratcheting tension that develops after a blizzard diverts a stagecoach from its route, and traps a pitiless and mistrustful group which includes a competing pair of bounty hunters, a renegade Confederate soldier, and a female prisoner in a saloon in the middle of nowhere. The eighth film from Quentin Tarantino stars Kurt Russell, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Samuel L Jackson, Channing Tatum and many more of the director’s frequent collaborators. On Blu-ray you also get a sneak peek behind the scenes, as well as a guide to 70mm filmmaking presented by none other than Sam Jackson himself. With Tarantino recently reiterating his desire to retire after making two more films, The Hateful Eight gives us another chance to appreciate his unique style while he’s still working.

jason-bourneJason Bourne (also available on Ultra HD Blu-ray)

After the events of The Bourne Ultimatum, and then Jeremy Renner taking up the reins in The Bourne Legacy, fans weren’t sure whether they’d see Matt Damon’s amnesiac superspy Jason Bourne back on the big screen. But they needn’t have worried, as 2016 saw his long awaited return. He’s joined again by Paul Greengrass, director of The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum, as Bourne, now remembering who he truly is, tries to uncover hidden truths about his past. Special features include a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the film, and a three part feature on Damon’s punishing fight training.

ghstbustersGhostbusters (also available on Ultra HD Blu-ray)

30 years after the original movie redefined what a big screen comedy could be, the Ghostbusters are finally back in this reboot from Paul Feig, director of recent smashes Bridesmaids and Spy. Featuring a roster of some of the funniest female comedians of the moment (Melissa McCarthy, Kirsten Wiig, Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones), Ghostbusters relaunches the tale of scientists who discover a supernatural plot to take over the world. With humour in spades, plenty of loving references to the original films and incredible special effects, Ghostbusters is a great time on Blu-ray.

civil-warCaptain America: Civil War

The previous Captain America movies have been among the best films in Marvel’s cinematic universe. But Civil War, the third in the series, upped the stakes with an epic clash of almost every character that’s appeared in a Marvel movie so far, and the debut of the latest big screen Spider-Man – this time played by Tom Holland, ahead of his own solo movie in 2017. Civil War sees Steve Rodgers (Chris Evans) come to blows with his fellow Avenger Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr), over how superheroes should be held accountable for their actions. The disc also includes deleted scenes, commentaries and featurettes on the two opposing sides in the battle. Blockbusters don’t come much bigger than this!

What were your Blu-ray highlights of 2016? Let us know in the comments. And as great as this year has been, 2017 could prove to be even better. In January we’ll take a look at some of the most anticipated discs you can look forward to over the next 12 months.

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