Hatfields & McCoys
Sony, $45.99;Blu-ray, $55.99
In the waning days of the American Civil War, a member of a West Virginia clan known as the Hatfields killed a member of a Kentucky family called the McCoys, touching off a bloody and world-famous feud that lasted the better part of a half-decade, costing a dozen men their lives. In May 2012, the History channel aired an original three-part miniseries about the feud — starring Kevin Costner as the head of the Hatfields and Bill Paxton as the head of the McCoys — which became the most-watched scripted program in the history of basic cable. The real surprise, though, is that no one's thought to go the miniseries route with this story before, given that its epic sprawl and larger-than-life characters would seem to be a natural for the medium. And though the History production isn't as toothy as a pay-cable version might've been, "Hatfields & McCoys" is well-acted and instilled with classic Americana, like a hill country "Godfather" saga. The DVD and Blu-ray contain the uncut version of the miniseries, plus a featurette.
Forever Marilyn: The Blu-Ray Collection
20th Century Fox Blu-ray, $99.98
More than just an icon, Marilyn Monroe was a legitimate actress and movie star who brought a unique energy to every film she was in: at once girlish, wounded and seductively human. The attractively priced "Forever Marilyn" Blu-ray collection packages together seven of Monroe's best pictures: "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes," "How to Marry a Millionaire," "River of No Return," "There's No Business Like Show Business," "The Seven Year Itch,""Some Like It Hot" and "The Misfits." That's a good mix of sexy comedies and realistic dramas, and though these discs are light on bonus features (outside of "The Seven Year Itch" and "Some Like It Hot," both of which contain commentary tracks and featurettes), the set as a whole makes a strong case for Monroe as a performer with talent to match her curves.