DVD Round Up, Oct. 20, 2009: ‘Medium,’ ‘Princess,’ ‘Top Chef’

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CHICAGO – Over the course of dozens of editions of HollywoodChicago.com’s DVD Round-Up column, we have brought our readers more than a few collections that possessed a remarkable variety of genres in one piece, but few match this week’s column, a quartet of titles that include supernatural drama, reality television, foreign animation, and classic fantasy.

It would be harder to say what these titles have in common than to point out their remarkable differences. All they really share is a launch on DVD around the same time. We truly have something for everyone this week. Synopsis, cast, technical details, and special features follow. Pick your favorite…

“Princess” was released on September 29th, 2009.

“The Gate” and “Medium: Season Five” were released on October 6th, 2009.

“Top Chef: Season Five” was released on October 20th, 2009.

“The Gate”

The Gate
Photo credit: Lionsgate

Synopsis: “After an old tree is removed from the ground, three young children accidentally release a horde of nasty, pint-sized demons from the hole in a suburban backyard. What follows is a classic battle between good and evil as the three kids struggle to overcome a nightmarish hell that is literally taking over the Earth.”

“The Gate” stars Stephen Dorff, Louis Tripp, and Christa Denton. It was written by Michael Nankin and directed by Tibor Takacs. The movie runs 85 minutes. It is presented in its original 1.78:1 aspect ratio and accompanied by an English 2.0 Dolby Digital Audio track.

Special features include Audio Commentary with the Filmmakers, All New Cast and Crew Interviews Including Writer Michael Nankin and Special Effects Creators Randall William Cook and Craig Reardon, and the Theatrical Trailer.

“Medium: The Fifth Season”

Medium: The Fifth Season
Photo credit: Paramount

Synopsis: “Patricia Arquette returns as Allison Dubois, the psychic mom who tries to balance her challenging career with her family life at home. This season, a sense of order is restored when Allison return to work with D.A. Manuel Devalos (Miguel Sandoval) and detective Lee Scanlon (David Cubitt). Plus, her husband Joe (Jake Weber) sets up his own company, funded by a multimillionaire.

But it’s Allison’s daughter Ariel (Sofia Vassilieva) - more than her younger sister Bridgette (Maria Lark) - who has trouble accepting the gift she inherited from her mother. This season, unsetting visions about school and boys trouble this psychic teen. In this 5-disc set of Medium: The Fifth Season - which includes all 18 episodes - Allison’s life at home can be just as baffling as any police case.”

“Medium” stars Patricia Arquette, Jake Weber, Sofia Vassilieva, Maria Lark, Miguel Sandoval, and David Cubitt. It was created by Glenn Gordon Caron. The show runs 809 minutes and is not rated. It is presented in its original 16:9 widescreen aspect ratio and accompanied by an English Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track.

Special features include “The Making of Medium: Season 5,” “Script to Screen: Apocalypse…Now?,” “JAck and Patricia Q & A,” and “Curious Maria”.


Photo credit: Palisades Tartan

Synopsis: “The 32-year-old clergyman August returns home from years of missionary work after hearing about the death of his sister Christina, who - after going from greatness to the gutter as the famous porn star The Princess - has finally died of drug abuse. She has left her five-year-old daughter Mia, with a prostitute. August visits the brothel to bring Mia home with him and becomes her guardian. Burdened by sorrow, guilt and unspeakable rage, August goes on a rampage to avenge his sister’s death and brings her small daughter with him. The mission escalates into a brutal and violent rout as August attempts desperately to protect the only thing he holds dear - namely Mia - forcing him to make a fateful decision.”

“Princess” stars Henrik Ibsen, Ida Dwinger, Jens Arentzen, Jiming Cai, Liv Corfixen. It was written by Anders Morgenthaler & Mette Heeno and directed by Morgenthaler. The film runs 90 minutes and is not rated. It is presented in its original widescreen 2.35:1 aspect ratio and accompanied by a Danish Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track.

Special features include just the original theatrical trailer.

“Top Chef: New York (Season Five)”

Top Chef: New York (Season Five)
Photo credit: A&E

Synopsis: “The world-class culinary competition only gets fiercer in TOP CHEF: NEW YORK—the No. 1 food show on cable—as 17 new cheftestants head to the Big Apple to test their skills and compete for culinary stardom. Featuring some of the biggest names in food and entertainment, the fifth season of this Emmy®-award winning series welcomes newbie Toby Young to the judges’ table alongside host Padma Lakshmi, head judge and celebrity chef Tom Colicchio, and Gail Simmons. In the most challenging season yet, the cheftestants battle to prove they have what it takes to be crowned the next Top Chef.”

“Top Chef: New York (Season Five)” stars Padma Lakshmi, Tom Colicchio, Gail Simmons, Toby Young, and guest judges include Martha Stewart, The Foo Fighters, Jean-Georges, Rocco DiSpirito, and Eric Ripert. The show run 694 minutes and is not rated.

Special features include an exclusive cookbook, never-before-aired stew room footage, extended interviews, a cooking demonstration, and a PC game demo.

HollywoodChicago.com content director Brian Tallerico

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