DVD reviews: The Amazing Spider-Man | Brave | Ted

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HIGH school student Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) is haunted by the disappearance of his parents. He lives with his uncle Ben (Martin Sheen) and aunt May (Sally Field) and contends with all the usual growing pains.

The Amazing Spider-Man (12)

A tender romance with fellow student Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone), daughter of police chief Captain Stacy (Denis Leary), keeps Peter on an even keel until he is bitten by a genetically modified arachnid. At the same time, Peter discovers evidence linking his parents’ disappearance to his father’s business partner, Dr Curt Connors (Rhys Ifans). Connors also has a secret alter ego: reptilian menace The Lizard. The Amazing Spider-Man is a terrifically entertaining refurbishment of the Marvel Comics superhero, blessed with an appealing mix of high-octane action and humour. Twists and turns in the script are the same as Sam Raimi’s action-packed 2002 blockbuster but technology has advanced in bounds in the past decade and Marc Webb’s film soars in the breathlessly paced action sequences. This Spider-Man swings to dizzying heights. The 3D version of the film is available exclusively on Blu-ray.

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, DVD £19.99/Blu-ray £24.99/3D Blu-ray £29.99

Brave (PG)

Brave is a computer-animated fable of female empowerment which signals a return to form for the digital wizards at Disney Pixar. Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman and Steve Purcell’s film strikes a perfect balance between laughter and tears, conjuring excitement and heart-warming sentiment out of the ether. The quality of animation is jaw-dropping. Merida’s fiery flowing locks deserve an Academy Award on their own, such is the exquisite detail of every windswept fibre, and that’s before your eyes are wooed by the sweeping landscapes, action-packed chases and colourful supporting characters. Kelly Macdonald is a spunky heroine and Billy Connolly brings typical humour to his chest-thumping patriarch. Thompson adds emotional warmth to surprisingly tender scenes between Merida and her mother in bear form.

Disney DVD £18.99/Blu-ray £22.99

Ted (15)

On Christmas Eve 1985, a boy called John Bennett (Bretton Manley) stares adoringly at his favourite teddy and whispers, “I wish you could talk. Then we could be friends forever and ever.” A shooting star passes overhead and the next morning John introduces the exceedingly animated Ted (voiced by Seth MacFarlane) to his dumbfounded parents. Fast-forwarding to the present day, John (Mark Wahlberg) now works for a car rental company and has a beautiful girlfriend, Lori (Mila Kunis). When their four-year anniversary dinner ends in a fractious discussion about priorities, John responds by asking his best buddy to move out of the apartment and stand on his own two paws. Ted is a deliciously foul-mouthed comedy that employs the magic of digital trickery to bring to life a rotund stuffed bear with a penchant for women, soft drugs and offensive language. Universal Pictures (UK) Ltd, DVD £19.99/Blu-ray £24.99