Cate Blanchett was born to play the role of Elizabeth I. She is powerful, poignant and fantastic in reprising her role as the leader of England in “Elizabeth — The Golden Age.” Facing new challenges from the invasion of Spain and the betrayal from her Catholic cousin, Mary Stuart (played by Samantha Morton), Elizabeth must once again balance what’s best for the country while staving off those that wish to deal her harm from within.
A lavish setting mixed with bloody torture, plenty of intrigue and some neat twists make this sequel a winner. Unfortunately, there isn’t much more on the DVD other than the film and a handful of featurettes. They issued a re-release of the original “Elizabeth” a few years after the original DVD release, so hold out for that, which should have more extras. Price: $29.98. Rent or buy: A most excellent rental.
THE BRAVE ONE
Vigilante justice is the order of the day in “The Brave One.” When Erica Bain (Jodi Foster) and her fiancé are attacked and he is killed, Erica is left alone and no longer sure in what she believes. So she takes to shooting violent criminals to alleviate her own fears. It certainly isn’t a light-hearted film. It’s another modern day “Death Wish,” this time with heavy topics about morality and ethics, but, unfortunately, lacks the subtle, sobering brilliance of “A History of Violence.” Price: $28.98. Rent or buy: Rent.
THIRD WATCH — THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON
There are those cancelled televisions shows that some people just won’t forget. “Third Watch” was not quite a spin-off of NBC’s “ER” but close enough that they were echoed in the same breath. In any event, it garnered a similar fan base that has been shouting at the rooftops for the seasons to be issued onto digital.
Well, those cries have been answered in this 22-episode, six-disc set from Warner Home Video about members of the fire and police departments in New York City, as they respond to events happening during the 3 to 11 p.m. shift. Price: $59.98. Rent or buy: Buy, if a fan.
PERFECT STRANGERS — THE COMPLETE FIRST & SECOND SEASONS
Not sure how many people have been clamoring for “Perfect Strangers” on DVD, but, regardless, it is now coming out with 28 episodes of language barrier-inducing laughs from the first two seasons on four discs. Surprisingly, there is little else on the DVD set. Considering the two stars aren’t really doing much these days, you’d think they would have gotten them in for an audio commentary or something, other than the stupid clip montage that is included. Price: $29.98. Rent or buy: Eh, buy if a fan.
MIDNIGHT EXPRESS — 30TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION
Has it really been 30 years since the Alan Parker-Oliver Stone Turkish prison escape flick debuted? Yes! This new re-release of the film features a new digital cut based on the original negatives, some vintage and new featurettes, a vintage commentary and more. Price: $19.94. Rent or buy: Buy, it’s cheap.
Other DVDs out Tuesday: “Tootsie — 25th Anniversary Edition,” “Killer Pad,” “2 Days in Paris,” “You’ve Got Mail: Deluxe Edition,” “Blind Dating,” “The Prince and the Pauper,” “Turok: Son of Stone,” “The Apartment,” “Across the Universe,” “The Jane Austen Book Club,” “Storm Warning,” “Feast of Love,” “Croc,” “Beauty and the Beast: Season Three” and “Niagara Motel.”