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Tuesday, 16 August 2022 14:43

Paramount sets TOP GUN: MAVERICK for disc on 11/1 & Digital next week on 8/23, plus For All Mankind: S1 on UK Blu-ray, Shawscope: Volume 2 & more!


All right, we have big release news to report today, but first we’ve got three more new disc reviews for you all to enjoy…

Stephen has given an in-depth look at Dario Argento’s Tenebrae in 4K Ultra HD, as newly released in a terrific and loaded special edition package from our friends at Synapse Films. If you’re a fan of Argento, the gaillo genre, or this film in particular, this is a great package that you’re not going to want to miss.

Stephen has also taken a look at an under-appreciated Soviet classic by director Alexandr Ptushko, a filmmaker considered by many to be the Russian George Pal… Sampo (1959) new on Blu-ray from Deaf Crocodile and Vinegar Syndrome. This is an interesting piece of cinema that also deserves a look.

Last but not least, Dennis has offered his thoughts on Graham Mason’s Inspector Ike (2020), which presents itself as a “lost 70s telefilm” and detective story spoof, a-la The Naked Gun. That’s available on Blu-ray from Factory 25 via Vinegar Syndrome, so be sure to check it out.

Now then, the biggest box office hit of the year… and what is likely to be the biggest home media title of the year as well… has finally been made official: Paramount Home Entertainment will release Joseph Kosinski’s Top Gun: Maverick on Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD on 11/1 (a date that our sources have been suggesting for a few weeks now). But here’s the real surprise: The Digital release will drop next Tuesday on 8/23! [Read on here...]

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The 4K Ultra HD will feature Dolby Vision HDR (along with HDR10) and both the Blu-ray and 4K will have Dolby Atmos audio. What’s more, our sources are suggesting that the film will be presented in a variable aspect ratio that shifts from 2.39:1 to 1.78:1 for scenes shot in IMAX format. However, this was not officially mentioned in the studio’s press release, so we’re working to confirm it directly with studio sources and we’ll post an update here as soon as we hear back from them.

[Editor’s Note: We have now confirmed with Paramount Home Entertainment that Top Gun: Maverick on Blu-ray, 4K Ultra HD, and Digital WILL indeed feature a variable aspect ratio presentation that shifts back and forth from 2.39 to 1.78 for the IMAX sequences.]

What is official in the press release is that the Blu-ray, 4K, and Digital SKUs will all include over 110 minutes of special features, among them 4 behind-the-scenes featurettes (Cleared for Take Off, Breaking New Ground – Filming Top Gun: Maverick, A Love Letter to Aviation, and Forging the Darkstar), along with an interview-style Masterclass with Top Cruise: Cannes Film Festival, a pair of music videos (Lady Gaga’s Hold My Hand and OneRepublic’s I Ain’t Worried), and the teaser trailer for Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning, Part One which is coming to theaters in 2023.

You can see the cover artwork for the Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD versions below. Note that there will also be a 4K UHD Steelbook release on 11/1 (for which the cover art isn’t final yet) as well as a Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD Top Gun: 2-Movie Collection that includes both the sequel and the original film together in one package. You can see the 4K version of this collection below. Note that all are now available for pre-order on Amazon by clicking on the covers…

Top Gun: Maverick (4K Ultra HD) Top Gun: Maverick (Blu-ray Disc) Top Gun: 2-Movie Collection (4K Ultra HD)

Also today, Lionsgate has just officially set Steven Soderbergh’s The Limey (1999) for 4K Ultra HD Steelbook release on 10/11. The disc will include Dolby Vision and HDR10 high dynamic range, with the existing 5.1 Dolby TrueHD sound mix. Extras will include audio commentary with Steven Soderbergh and writer Lem Dobbs, a second commentary with Soderbergh, Dobbs, and actors Peter Fonda, Terence Stamp, Barry Newman, and Lesley Ann Warren, and the film's isolated score.

One more bit of physical 4K news today: Kino Lorber Studio Classics has just revealed that they’re working on a UHD release of Brett Ratner’s Red Dragon (2002) which will include a new Dolby Vision HDR grade. There’s no street date yet, but we’ll post an update when it’s official.

And we have a bit of 4K Digital news as well: Disney has just added Tim Burton’s stop-motion animated classic The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) to its Disney+ streaming service in fully-remastered 4K with HDR. And the film looks great, complete with light but organic grain. Fingers crossed this means two things: First, that Disney could release it as a physical 4K UHD title in the weeks and months ahead, and second, that maybe Disney will start getting a lot more serious about remastering other deserving Disney, 20th Century Studios, Touchstone, and Hollywood Pictures catalog film content in 4K for release on Disney+ and physical 4K Ultra HD.

On to regular Blu-ray news… Arrow Video has just made its Shawscope: Volume Two box set official for release on 11/22, including 14 more Shaw Brothers classics in HD and tons of bonus features. Look for the 10-disc set to include The 36th Chamber of Shaolin, Return to the 36th Chamber, Disciples of the 36th Chamber, Mad Monkey Kung Fu, Five Superfighters, Invincible Shaolin, The Kid with the Golden Arm, Magnificent Ruffians, Ten Tigers of Kwangtung, My Young Auntie, Mercenaries from Hong Kong, The Boxer’s Omen, Martial Arts of Shaolin, and The Bare-footed Kid. Two of the set’s discs will also be CDs with music from the films. There’s also a 60-page book of essays and liner notes on each film. Here’s what that package looks like, and again it’s now available for pre-order on Amazon by clicking on the artwork…

Shawscope: Volume 2 (Blu-ray Disc)

Not done yet! Here’s a surprise… a company called Dazzler Media in the UK is releasing Apple TV’s terrific alternate reality spaceflight/science fiction series For All Mankind: Season One on Blu-ray in the UK in 9/26. As many Bits readers will no doubt be aware, this is my favorite TV series in a very long time. Keep in mind, it’s likely to be region locked. There are currently no plans for a physical media release of the series (which is produced by Sony Pictures Television) here in the US, but it’s possible that it could be released on 4K and Blu-ray at a later date. In the meantime, click here or on the cover art below to pre-order the UK Blu-ray version from…

For All Mankind: Season One (UK Blu-ray Disc) The Amusement Park (UK Blu-ray Disc) The Flash: The Complete Eighth Season (Blu-ray Disc)

As you can see, we’ve also included the cover art for a pair of additional Blu-ray titles…

RLJE Films and Shudder have set George A. Romero’s The Amusement Park (1973) for release on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital on 9/13. The film was recently re-discovered and restored in 4K by IndieCollect in New York City. The Blu-ray release will include audio commentary by Michael Gornick, 4 featurettes (Re-Opening The “Park” with Suzanne Desrocher-Romero, Bill & Bonnie’s Excellent Adventure with Bonnie Hinzman, For Your Amusement with Artist Ryan Carr, and Panel Interview with Suzanne Desrocher-Romero, Sandra Schulberg, Greg Nicotero and Daniel Kraus moderated by Shudder’s Samuel Zimmerman), an official brochure, the script, and a behind-the-scenes photo gallery.

And Warner Bros Home Entertainment and DC have officially announced The Flash: The Complete Eighth Season for release on Blu-ray and DVD on 10/18. The set will include all 20 episodes along with deleted scenes, a gag reel, and 2 featurettes (The DC Heroes: Path to Glory and The Flash: Standing the Test of Time).

Finally today, an event announcement: For those of you who live in the Colorado Springs area, our friends at the excellent home theater retailer The Screening Room A/V will be hosting a new TSR Laser Projector Shootout event this coming weekend on 8/20 and 8/21. They’ll be putting no less than EIGHT of the newest laser projectors from Epson, Sony, and JVC up against each other in head-to head match-ups to see which deliver the very best image quality. Our friend Kris Deering of Deep Dive AV and Sound and Vision magazine will be on hand to ensure that all of the projectors are properly calibrated. You can visit the official event page here (you’ll want to sign up on their website in advance to reserve a free spot at this event). The event will take place from 1-5 PM each day. The Screening Room A/V is located at 525 N Cascade Ave, Colorado Springs, CO 80903. If you decide to attend, be sure to tell them that The Digital Bits sent you! Both Kris and the owner, John Schuermann, are old friends of ours!

That’s all for now. Stay tuned…

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