Baby Jack-Jack has an encounter with a raccoon in "Incredibles 2."
Baby Jack-Jack has an encounter with a raccoon in "Incredibles 2."

Incredibles 2 (Disney, 2 Blu-rays + standard DVD, PG, 117 min.). It took writer-director Brad Bird 14 years to come up with his sequel to the first film, which won Oscars for Best Animated Feature and Best Sound Editing, as well as being nominated for Best Original Screenplay and Best Sound Mixing. Bird and his team of Pixar animators have done a wonderful job with a great looking film and a family-centric story that sees Helen Parr (voiced by Holly Hunter) go back to work as Elastigirl in New Urbem, while husband Bob, aka Mr. Incredible (voiced by Craig T. Nelson), stays home to care for the three children. Elastigirl's heroics are part of Winston Deavor's (voiced by Bob Odenkirk) plan to win back rights for superheroes and have their heroics no longer be illegal.

The film also gives more screen time to cute baby Jack-Jack (voiced by Eli Fucile), who suddenly is displaying as many as 17 different powers -- Jack-Jack has a very funny encounter with a thieving raccoon -- as well as to superhero costume designer "Auntie" Edna Mode (voiced by Brad Bird), who gets to babysit Jack-Jack for one memorable night. (Two deleted scenes provide even more Edna fun). Meanwhile, Violet Parr (voiced by Sarah Vowell) is having her first teenage crush on classmate Tony Rydinger (voiced by Michael Bird) and young Dash Parr (voiced by Huckleberry Milner) is frustrated that he cannot use his powers. Helping the Parr family out -- they now live at a motel, as their home was destroyed at the end of the first film -- are Agent Rick Dicker (voiced by Jonathan Banks) and fellow superhero Frozone (voiced by Samuel L. Jackson). Working with Winston is his sister, Evelyn (voiced by Catherine Keener). The Deavors also give the Parrs a beautiful home to live in.

The film's well-done action sequences include a rather destructive battle with the Underminer, who uses his giant manned drill to sink a bank underground so he can rob it, then the drill goes off on its own; and Elastigirl's saving of a Metrolev monorail that has been tampered with so it speeds backwards and ultimately will crash at the end of the line. The other, more treacherous big bad is Screenslaver, who manages to hypnotize people with his videos.

Also worth noting is returning composer Michael Giacchino's often James Bond-like score. Extras are copious and include on the feature disc audio commentary by Bird, animation supervisors Dave Mullins, Alan Barillaro and Tony Fucile, and animation second unit and crowd supervisor Bret Parker; the short film "Auntie Edna" (5:08) that shows what happed during the night she babysat Jack-Jack; the short film "Bao" (7:41) in which a dumpling comes to life and we follow his life; and a look at Bird's history with Walt Disney Studios, which began when he had an informal internship at age 14 (18:50). All these extras are very good, particularly seeing Bird at work.

The second, all-bonus disc includes brief looks at the seven heroes and villains, plus the Wannabes (25:35); three toy commercials (1:36 each); three character theme songs (1:36 each); and 10 deleted scenes with an overall introduction by Bird and introductions for each scene, most of which are unfinished "comic book versions," as Bird calls them (39:44). Highlights among the deleted material are Frozone's previously-unseen wife, Honey, trying to hide his superhero suit; a restaurant holdup foiled by Violet and Dash, while Bob is changing Jack-Jack in the restroom; Bob meeting Edna at her clothing design runway show; and Bob having to defeat Edna's out-of-control, elaborate and deadly home security system. Sunday, the film won Family Movie of 2018 at the People's Choice Awards. Grade: film 3.75 stars; extras 3.5 stars

Rating guide: 5 stars = classic; 4 stars = excellent; 3 stars = good; 2 stars = fair; dog = skip it

Teen Titans Go! To the Movies (Warner, Blu-ray or standard DVD, PG, 84 min.). While "Incredibles 2" promotes the value of family, this film emphasizes the value of friendship, but also tackles the whole plethora of superhero movies with a big wink, as Robin (voiced by Scott Menville), leader of Teen Titans, feels left out of the superhero movie craze, particularly when the coming attractions announce movies based around Alfred the Butler, the Batmobile and even Batman's utility belt. And yes, the film also offers a handful of catchy songs.

First, though, the Teen Titans battle the Inflated Destroyer (aka Balloon Man, voiced by Greg Davies), who is a rather cool villain, based on how he can manipulate his balloon-like body. And, if it were not obvious that this movie is aimed at kids, the battle involves the film's first fart joke. The rest of the Teen Titans (and their voices) are Raven (Tara Strong), Beast Boy (Greg Cipes), Starfire (Hynden Walch) and Cyborg (Khary Payton).

Humiliated at being only considered a sidekick, Robin decides the Teen Titans need an archenemy to get the attention of film director Jade Wilson (Kristen Bell of TV's "The Good Place," "Veronica Mars"). Robin decides that villain will be Slade (voiced by Will Arnett), who has just robbed Star Labs of its Ditronium Crystal, because Slade is such a cool-sounding name. Slade uses mental manipulation in his crime craft. In another funny sequence, the Teen Titans time travel to the past to alter the incidents that created superheroes such as Superman (voiced by Nicolas Cage) and Batman (voiced by Jimmy Kimmel), as Wilson said she would only make a Robin movie if there were no other superheroes.

Along the way, the film, directed by Aaron Horvath and Peter Rida Michail and written by Michael Jelenic and Horvath, makes  fun of a few real people and real superhero movies. There are lots of nods to "Deadpool," another very self-aware film franchise. The film's humor works on both an adult and a child level (the latter, includes a long bit about pooping in a fake movie set toilet).

While there are numerous extras, none are particularly substantive. They include a Lil Yachty music video (2:09); three sing-alongs (7 min.); the mini-movie "The Late Batsby" with an all-female hero team battling Mr. Freeze (4:14); Red Carpet Mayhem, which is sort of a movie promo (2:10); shenanigans on the Warner Brothers lot, with people dressed up as Teen Titans basically giving a lot tour (3:56); a cut scene with a "Fake" song (51 secs.); some of the film's dialogue delivered in various languages (2:18); and two storyboard animatics (2:41). All the extras are Blu-ray exclusives except for the storyboard animatics. Grade: film 3 stars; extras 2.5 stars

Christopher Robin (Disney, Blu-ray or standard DVD, PG, 104 min.). Christopher Robin, of course, is a character featured in the poetry and the books "Winnie-the-Pooh" (1926) and "The House at Pooh Corner" (1928) by writer A.A. Milne, based on his own son. The young Christopher is a friend to Pooh, the bear, and the other animals of Hundred Acre Wood, including Eeyore, Kanga, Roo, Rabbit, Pigelt, Owl and Tigger. Beginning in 1966, Walt Disney started making "Pooh" cartoons and Christopher was a supporting character in many of them. Now, Christopher, as an adult (Ewan McGregor of the "Star Wars" franchise), is a main character, along with Pooh (voiced by Jim Cummings, based on the vocal work of original actor Sterling Halloway.

Thirty years after he has last seen Pooh, Christopher has a wife (Hayley Atwell of "Ant-Man" and the "Captain America" films as Evelyn) and a young daughter (Bronte Carmichael as Madeline), whom he is considering sending to boarding school. (Milne sent his son off to boarding school at age 9.) Christopher is neglecting his family a bit due to the volume of work he has as compliance officer at Winslow Luggage. The company is in financial trouble due to a lack of travel after the war and, while Christopher has managed to trim 3 percent off the budget, his boss (Mark Gatiss as Giles Winslow) has ordered him to cut 20 percent by Monday, meaning Christopher will not be able to go on the planned weekend outing with his wife and daughter to Hartfield in Sussex. Hartfield is where Hundred Acre Wood is, but suddenly Pooh cannot find any of his friends and, when he takes the tree passage that used to lead him to Christopher's house in Hartfield, it instead leads him to the park across the street from Christopher's flat in London, leading him to reconnect with Christopher, who is trying to duck a neighbor who is insisting he play gin rummy.

Christopher decides to take Pooh back to Hundred Acre Wood, bringing along his briefcase so he can work during the train ride. Pooh insists Christopher buy him a red balloon. Soon, Christopher is back in Hundred Acre Wood and reunited with all the creatures, who are portrayed by a combination of stuffed animals, puppets and computer animation. It is all rather well done, but I found Pooh's vocal delivery to be a bit too deliberate and morose. (I am not that familiar with the original cartoons.) Eeyore, the donkey, does get some funny lines, and a highlight of the film is Christopher pretending to battle a Heffalump.

Later, Madeline encounters Pooh and the others and brings two armfuls of them along to London, as her father's work papers have been left behind. This leads to an action-filled cab and truck ride through the city.

The film is directed by Marc Forster and written by Alex Ross Perry and Tom McCarthy, who make the old choice of including a scene of Christopher in war combat in what is basically a child's movie. The extras are minimal, including a making-of featurette (5:28); a look at Pooh's voice talent, including Holloway (2:43); how Walt Disney fell for Pooh through his young daughter but it took 20 years to bring Pooh to the screen (2:43); and Carmichael hosting a look at how the characters came to life (3:16). Grade: film 2.75 stars; extras 2 stars

The Princess Bride (1987, Criterion Blu-ray, PG, 98 min.). Speaking of classic fables, "The Princess Bride" is out in a handsome new edition that is a 38-page hardcover book, with the disc inside the back cover. The entertaining, and cheeky, film, directed by Rob Reiner with screenwriter William Goldman adapting his own novel, tells the story of Buttercup (Robin right) and the man of her dreams (Cary Elwes) trying to reunite back in the day. The story is told by a grandfather (Peter Falk) to his grandson (Fred Savage), who explains why things happen to the characters along the way.

This edition is from a new 4K restoration and retains the 1996 audio commentary by Reiner, Goldman, producer  Andrew Scheinman and actors Billy Crystal (Miracle Max) and Falk. There also is an edited 1987 audiobook reading of the novel by Reiner. From 2012 is a featurette with Reiner, Elwes and Wright talking about making the film and its huge success (15 min.), plus new featurettes about Goldman's screenplay (18 min.) with Columbia University screenwriting adjunct professor Loren-Paul Caplin and Goldman's tapestry based on his novel (8 min.). There is a new interview with art director Richard Holland (12 min.), as well as a vintage multi-part making-of that includes looks at the production with archival cast and crew interviews (28 min.), the actors on the film's impact (19 min.), the makeup behind Miracle Max (12 min.), Elwes' video diary (4 min.) and five short behind-the-scenes production videos, with 1997 audio commentary (20 min.). And the extras would not be complete without a vintage look at fencing (8 min.) and the appeal and themes of fairy tales (10 min.). The book includes essays by author Sloane Crosley and Goldman's introduction to the script from his collection, "Four Screenplays." Grade: film and extras 4.5 stars

The Spy Who Dumped Me (Lionsgate, Blu-ray or standard DVD, R, 116 min.). There is some fun in this film about a woman whose former boyfriend turns out to be a spy and she and her best friend go to Europe to complete his mission. There are lots of funny cameos as well, but the plot gets less likely as the film goes along. On Sunday, the film won Comedy Movie of 2018 at the People's Choice Awards.

The jilted girlfriend is Audrey Stockman, played by Mila Kunis (still carrying lots of good will from her days on "That '70s Show"), while the friend is Morgan Freeman (the name is a joke in itself), played by Kate McKinnon of the all-female "Ghostbusters." The ex-boyfriend is Drew (Justin Theroux, a veteran TV actor who also wrote the films "Tropic Thunder," "Iron Man 2," "Zoolander 2"). Drew dumped Audrey by text, making the breakup even worse.

The film opens with an action sequence in Lithuania, with a man, whom we later learn is Drew, is attacked in a market place. The film then shifts to Audrey celebrating her 30th birthday and not wanting a party because everyone will be asking whatever happened to Drew. Of course, Morgan throws her a party anyway. Afterwards, they have decided to burn Drew's things, when he just happens to call and tell them to leave his things alone, especially his trophy. Audrey then is picked up by two men -- Hasan Minhaj as Duffer and Sam Heughan as Sebastian, who says he is with Britain's MI6 -- and interrogated about Drew, whom they say is a CIA agent.

Back at Morgan's, gunmen shoot up the place, just after Drew arrives and says he has to take the trophy to someone at a cafe in Vienna, Austria. When Drew is shot by a naked Viktor, whom Morgan had been entertaining, the girls escape and, since their passports are already in the car, decide to go to Vienna to complete Drew's mission.

Once in Europe, the two women get unwittingly involved in the spy game and seldom is anyone who they really say they are. Amusing bits include the slow theft of a car that turns out to have a stick shift, a semi-comic, motorcycle-car chase and a visual "two dumb American women" joke. What is good about the movie, which was directed by Suzanna Fogel and co-written by Fogel and David Iserson, is the action sequences are performed by amazing stunt people and done big-budget movie style.

Ivanna Sakhno plays assassin Nadadja, sent after Audrey and Morgan, while Gillian Anderson plays an MI6 official. Morgan gets to battle Nadadja as both are on trapezes. Among the cameos are Paul Reiser and Jane Curtin  as Morgan's parents. You also get to hear "These Boots Are Made For Walking" sung in Czech.

The best of the bonus material shows the work of second unit director/stunt coordinator Gary Powell ( a veteran of the James Bond and Jason Bourne films), with lots of behind-the -camera shots (9:04) and the outtakes (6:41), basically a gag reel. There are more behind-the-camera looks in the making-of featurette (11:15);, as well as 11 deleted scenes (9:35), the best being a conversation between Audrey and Morgan as they walk through Vienna; a off-script segment that is like a line-o-rama (6:07); and a piece on Minhaj in Budapest, where the film was made (6:46). Grade: film 3 stars; extras 2 stars

Beyond the Sky (RLJE, Blu-ray or standard DVD, NR, 82 min.). This is a rare alien abduction movie that actually pays off at the end. Ryan Carnes of TV's "General Hospital" plays documentary film maker Chris Norton, who sets out to prove that the alien abduction phenomenon is not real. On his seventh birthday, Norton's parents had a fight and his mother ran off, but his father (Peter Stormare) always claimed she had been abducted by aliens. There at least was a power surge that Norton caught on his movie camera as a child.

Norton, with his cameraman, heads off to Roswell, New Mexico, where he encounters, and starts falling for, Emily Reed (Jordan Hinson), who claims she has been abducted every seven years on her birthday and the next time is due in three days. Reed also claims to have come back one time with a memory device that is now stored in the Ceti Alpha 5 alien souvenir store run by Lucille (Dee Wallace of "E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial").

The only extras are brief interviews with Travis Walton, an abductee and author of "Fire in the Sky" (2:10) and a Navajo artist who claims to have seen a UFO in when he was 10 (2:52). Grade: film 3 stars; extras 1 star

Blood, Sweat and Terrors (RLJE DVD, NR, 98 min.). This is one strange DVD. It collects nine different short films, written and directed by different people. The only recurring theme seems to be violence. There is brief nudity and, at times, excessive blood. Two of the shorts are in foreign languages.

The weirdness includes one in which people battle to the death with lacrosse sticks, while in another, two female soldiers talk about their periods while killing male enemies. One segment has an extended fight between two men and another has an extended fight between a man and a woman, as the stunt people are the real stars of the DVD.

The best two segments come late. One has two off-duty policemen break into a suspect's house, looking for a hidden ledger. Things do not go as planned. There are some familiar faces in "Get Some," which is set in a zombie plague future, when Hunter Smith (Warren Brown  of TV's "Strike Back," "X Company") does podcasts that feature him hunting down the "Outies." On this expedition, along is Dr. James Borans (John Hannah of "The Mummy" film franchise and TV's "Spartacus" franchise), who believes the "Outsiders" may be able to be saved. How could anything go wrong? Well, as Smith says, the microphone man usually dies on the expeditions. There are no bonus features. Grade: film 2 stars

MacGyver: The Complete First Season (1985-86, CBS/Paramount, 5 Blu-ray discs, NR, 17 hours 25 min.). This is the first time any of the original series, starring Richard Dean Anderson as Angus MacGyver, has been released on Blu-ray. The 22-episode first season introduced the secret agent who is able to outwit opponents with quick genius-level thinking and the use of everyday objects, turned into weapons or escape mechanisms. Brains beat brawn as usually duct-tape, a pocketknife and scientific training prove sufficient. MacGyver is proficient in multiple languages, knows applied physics, has great engineering skills, military training in bomb disposal and non-lethal resolutions, and prefers to use his trusty father-given Swiss Army knife over a gun.

The show would run seven seasons and win seven of the eight Emmys it was nominated for, all of which came after the first season. The current reboot, with Lucas Till as a younger MacGyver, is in its third season.

Charmed: The Complete First Season (1998-99, CBS/Paramount, 5 Blu-ray discs, NR, 16 hours 11 min.). Another well-liked show seeing its initial Blu-ray release is "Charmed," starring Shannen Doherty, Holly Marie Combs and Alyssa Milano as the Halliwell sisters, respectively, Prue, Piper and Phoebe, the most powerful good witches of all time. Each sister has separate magical powers that grow and evolve, while they try to maintain normal lives in San Francisco. They often work with the police force, including Andy Trudeau (T.W. King), Prue's ex-boyfriend, this season and Lt. Darryl Morris (Dorian Gregory) through the first seven seasons. The show ran for eight seasons and a reboot has just started airing on the CW.

Most of the new films that come out on Blu-ray also come in the new 4K Ultra HD format, which some of you may be upgrading to this Christmas. Most of the home video companies have been reaching into their back catalogs and upgrading popular films. Some of the most recent are:

Twilight (2008, Lionsgate, 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray, PG-13, 122 min.). Based on the beloved book series by Stephenie Meyer, this 10th anniversary upgrade of the film contains both the theatrical version and, through digital download, the unrated version. Directed by Catherine Hardwicke ("Red Riding Hood") from a screenplay by Melissa Rosenberg (TV's "Dexter"), the film stars Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart as iconic couple Edward Cullen and Bella Swan -- he being a vampire and she a human -- alongside Taylor Lautner as a werewolf who vies for her affection. New to this edition are a 10 years later Twilight tour (10 min.) and new unique box art design by illustrator Justin Erikson. All the previous extras also are ported over. Both the picture and audio are improved slightly.

The Matrix Trilogy (1999 and 2003, Warner Bros., 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray, 9 discs, R, 4 hours 45 min.). In this acclaimed series by The Wachowskis, a man (Keanu Reeves as Neo) comes to realize his "reality" is computer-generated. For the 4K Ultra HD releases, there was a new 4K scan of the original camera negatives. Color correction and HDR grading were performed by MPI's senior colorist, Jan Yarbrough, and overseen by Bill Pope, director of photography on all three films.

In a press release, Yarbrough states: "The Wachowskis have entrusted the creation of the HDR mastering with the original Director of Photography Bill Pope, ASC. Working with Bill I have come to realize that he has a full understanding and appreciation for the dynamics of the HDR format. 'The Matrix' is created in two worlds: the 'real' world in cool blue tones; and the 'data' world in ever present green. Now with HDR, this film can be viewed in its futuristic and data centric realm more accurately than previous formats would allow. HDR with its huge dynamic range of luminance and color gamut allows for a true film gamma replication while adding additional dynamic range for accurate highlights and deep detailed blacks. DP Bill Pope has taken advantage of this to create a version with color timing as it was originally intended, crafting a high resolution digital master that is more accurate than the original theatrical release."

The three films are "The Matrix" (1999), "The Matrix Reloaded" and "The Matrix Revolutions." Not included in this edition is "The Animatrix," which was included in the previous Blu-ray box set (2008). Many of the previous Blu-ray bonus material for the three feature films has been ported over, including the four audio commentaries on the first film and the two audio commentaries apiece on the second and third films, which both also come with In-Movie Experience, featuring the cast and crew going behind the scenes as one watches the films. In addition the first film comes with more than three hours of additional bonus content.

Superman: The Movie (1978, Warner Bros., 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray, PG, 143 min.). This was the movie that made audiences believe a man could fly, as promised in the advertising. That man was Christopher Reeve, who played Clark Kent/Superman. (It was somewhat sadly ironic that a horse riding accident in 1995 would confine Reeve to a wheelchair for the rest of his life. A frequent visitor to Midcoast Maine, he died in 2004.) Reeve played Superman in three more films. The film also stars Margot Kidder as Lois Lane, Marlon Brando as Jor-El, Superman's father, and Gene Hackman as Lex Luthor. This is both the 40th anniversary of the film and the 80th anniversary of Superman, the character.

The film was produced by Pierre Spengler from a story by Mario Puzo and a screenplay by Puzo, David Newman, Leslie Newman and Robert Benton. Ilya Salkind served as executive producer. The film also features Ned Beatty as Otis, Jackie Cooper as Perry White, Glen Ford as Jonathan Kent, Valerie Perrine as Eva Teschmacher and Terrance Stamp as General Zod. The film was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Film Editing, Best Music (Original Score) and Best Sound. It also received a Special Achievement Academy Award for Visual Effects. In 2017, "Superman: The Movie" was inducted in to the Library of Congress National Film Registry. Extras include audio commentary by Salkind and Spengler, plus the 1978 TV special, "The Making of Superman: The Movie."

Air Force One (1997, Sony, 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray, R, 124 min.). In the film, the President of the United States, James Marshall (Harrison Ford), takes a tough anti-terrorist stance and then becomes a hostage himself when Air Force One is taken over by terrorists from Kazakhstan, who are led by Ivan Korshunov (Gary Oldman). The terrorists demand the release of their fascistic leader General Radek (Jurgen Prochnow). The President seems to escape from the plane in an emergency capsule yet is actually hiding on board. He silently kills a member of the terrorist group, before establishing contact with F-15's to engage the hijacked plane. As passengers escape by parachute, Marshall is captured by Korshunov and forced to release General Radek, setting in motion an international incident. The film was directed by Wolfgang Petersen ("Das Boot" film and TV series, "The Perfect Storm") and written by Andrew W. Marlowe. Included is the previous audio commentary by Petersen.

The Big Lebowski: 20th Anniversary Edition (1998, Universal, 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray, R, 86 min.). This cult crime-comedy, which I never was a fan of, also makes its 4K Ultra HD debut. It stars Jeff Bridges as Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski, who is mistaken for a millionaire of the same name. Throughout the film, The Dude tries to get restitution for his ruined rug and enlists his bowling buddies to help. The film also stars John Goodman, Julianne Moore, Steve Buscemi, Philip Seymour Hoffman and John Turturro. The extensive Blu-ray extras are ported over from the 10th anniversary edition. One can also buy the limited edition, which comes with a collectible bag, a bowling ball pencil holder, a polishing cloth and sweater packaging.