Living & Entertainment

‘Avengers’ provides big blast for home viewing

“Avengers: Age of Ultron”: 3 stars. The heroes reunite to stop a creation with artificial intelligence out to destroy the world. Chris Evans, James Spader star.

Director Joss Whedon amped up the story for “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” cast Spader to bring wicked life to the robotic villain, added more characters from the Marvel universe and tossed in some massive action scenes. All of this makes for a good, but not best Avengers movie.

“Insidious: Chapter 3”: 3 stars. Young woman is haunted by a deadly demon that lives in her building. Dermot Mulroney stars. A lesser film would have concentrated entirely on this battle between the living and dead. Director Leigh Whannell balances the terror with complicated characters.

“Me and Earl and the Dying Girl”: 3 1/2 stars. Too often movies about the agony and ecstasy of growing up feature actors who are so young they seem like preschoolers or are so mature they come across as if they’re getting Social Security checks.

But director Alfonso Gomez-Rejon has used the script by Jesse Andrews to pull engaging — and age-appropriate — performances out of the cast.


“The Timber”: Josh Peck stars in the apocalyptic Western-thriller.

“What We Did on Our Holiday”: One family has an unforgettable summer vacation.

“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Complete First and Second Seasons”: Includes 24 hours of total turtle fun.

“South Park: The Complete 18th Season”: The four friends get lost in virtual reality.

“Avatar: The Last Airbender: The Complete Series”: Contains all 61 episodes of the animated series.

“The Invoking 2”: Demonic forces create misery for a group of people.

“Air”: Norman Reedus and Djimon Hounson play two engineers tasked with guarding last pieces of mankind.

“In the Courtyard”: Ex-musician finds new life as a building caretaker.

“Death in Paradise: Season 3”: Impossible murders strike the Caribbean island of Saint Marie.

“Amnesiac”: Man with memory loss soon suspects his wife is not his real wife. Kate Bosworth stars.

“Golden Shoes”: Young boy finds special abilities in a pair of shoes.

“Escobar: Paradise Lost”: Surfer thinks he’s found true love, only to realize she is the niece of major drug lord.

“Batkid Begins”: San Francisco helps make heroic wish come true.

“The Last Shift”: Police station is home to pure evil.

“The Code: Season 1”: Mystery of a girl’s death brings several people together.

“Frontline: Escaping ISIS”: A look at the plight of Yazidi women and children.

“Pee-wee’s Playhouse: Christmas Special”: Pee-wee learns the true meaning of Christmas.

“Hidden”: Family faces fears underground.

“Dark Places”: Woman must confront horrible memories from her past. Charlize Theron stars.

“Shalom Sesame: Full Series”: Includes all 12 episodes.

“Gravy”: Costumed trio take over a Mexican restaurant.

“Out of the Vault Christmas Collection”: Includes episodes of “Angry Beavers,” “CatDog” and “Hey Arnold.”

“Particle Fever”: Film follows six scientists as they launch the Large Hadron Collider.

“Penny Dreadful: Season 2”: Ethan Chandler (Josh Hartnett) deals with his special skills.

“Happyish: Season 1”: Middle-aged man (Steve Coogan) tries to adjust to changes at work.

“Old 37”: Two crazed brothers do horrific medical procedures.

“Greatest Heroes of the Bible: The Complete Series”: Includes 12 hours of epic stories.

“Love”: Child possessed by ancient demon arrives at new foster home.

“My Little Pony & Littlest Pet Shop: Winter Vacation”: Ponies and pets go on six wintry adventures.

“Will to Love”: Happy bachelor must find a bride in order to get huge inheritance.

“Horror Classics Collection: Volume 1”: One of the four films included in the set is “The Mummy.”

“Dead Rising: Watchtower”: Jesse Metcalfe stars in this tale of a group of people trapped in a quarantined area after the government falls.

“Science & Word Play: Blaze and the Monster Machines: Blaze of Glory & Wallykazam!”: Educational material aimed at those headed to kindergarten.