History, Legacy & Showmanship
Items filtered by date: July 2013

Quick important note:  Because of all the extra traffic this week, we’re going to be upgrading our server this evening to be able to handle these kinds of traffic spikes more easily.  We may be down for a couple hours later tonight but we should be back up by tomorrow morning better than ever.  Certainly by Monday, Scotty tells us that the warp core should be purring like a kitten again.  So thanks for your patience and know that things will be much better soon.

Now then, there’s big release news today…

Our friends at Kino Lorber have announced their November Blu-ray and DVD release slate and there are some real gems, including a Nosferatu: 2-Disc Deluxe Remastered Edition (DVD & Blu-ray) and a Russian Ark: Anniversary Edition (Blu-ray and DVD) on 11/19!  F.W. Murnau’s Nosferatu will include two versions of the 1922 classic, the original German Intertitles (with optional English subs) or English Intertitles, Hans Erdmann’s original 1922 score in 5.1 Surround or 2.0 Stereo, the 53-minute The Language of Shadows documentary chronicling Murnau’s early career, clips and highlights from other Murnau films and a photo gallery.  Features on Russian Ark are still TBA.  [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

Well... I guess it’s been a while since we went on a good old fashioned Blu-ray or DVD related rant, so yesterday’s post here at the site was probably going to happen sooner or later.  As longtime readers know, it wouldn’t be The Digital Bits without such rants every once in a while – we’ve been doing it since 1997.  But I still think what I said needed saying.  Whenever we go on rants here at The Bits, it’s for a good reason – because in our experienced point of view, something is amiss.  And after more than 16 years of working in and around the home video industry (not to mention having correctly predicted and advised our readers through two format wars), we certainly have that experience.  [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents
Wednesday, 28 August 2013 15:15

Paramount Has a Blu-ray Problem

All right Bits readers – this post I’ve wrestled with all night and all morning as well.

Yesterday afternoon, I received a Blu-ray review copy of Paramount’s Star Trek Into Darkness.  As regular readers will probably know, I actually liked the film.  But when it was finally announced for Blu-ray release, I was surprised at the list of bonus content in the press release, specifically the lack thereof – just seven featurettes.  I quickly sent an e-mail to the studio PR people, asking if this was indeed the complete list of bonus content, and was told that it was.  But somehow, I guess I just didn’t believe it.  So somehow, I was still excited to see and review the disc.  [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

Some long out of print titles from both Warner Bros. and Paramount are the focus of this week’s new releases from Warner Archive.  There are some first-rate choices this week, so let’s take a look at ‘em.

Targets (1968) – Boris Karloff gave his last great performance as Byron Orlock, a fading horror star who feels irrelevant in the modern world.  He comes face to face with real terror in the form of a psychotic sniper, picking off victims at random.  A remarkable early film from Peter Bogdanovich.

Frankenstein And The Monster From Hell (1974) – Hammer Films’ final Frankenstein entry finds Peter Cushing continuing his experiments in an insane asylum.  David Prowse, still a few years away from becoming Darth Vader, plays the Creature.  [...]

There’s lots more announcement news to cover today...

Before we get to that, however, our very own Dr. Adam Jahnke has turned in this week’s Burnt Offerings: MOD DVD column featuring a rundown of the latest DVD-R and Blu-ray release news from our friends at the Warner Archive.  As usual, Adam’s also reviewed a new title from the Archive too – this week it’s the Coen Brothers’ classic The Hudsucker Proxy on Blu-ray.  Enjoy!

Now then… Shout! and Scream Factory have set The Vincent Price Collection for Blu-ray release on 10/22, and we now have final details on bonus content for each film in the set!  Here’s what to expect...  […]

Published in My Two Cents

Let’s get right to the announcement news today...

Shout! and Scream Factory are going to release John Carpenter’s Body Bags and Assault on Precinct 13 on Blu-ray Combo on 11/12 and 11/19 respectively.  Extras on Body Bags will include three audio commentary tracks, interviews with Carpenter and the actors and the trailer.  Assault on Precinct 13 extras are still in development.

Sony has announced a number of new MOD Manufactured on Demand titles for release on DVD-R on 10/1, including Whatever, Gidget Gets Married, Kiss Me, Kill Me, The Comic, Air Hostess (1933), Babies for Sale, The Unwelcome Stranger, Made in Italy, Party of Five: The Complete Sixth Season and Happy Endings: The Complete Third Season[…]

Published in My Two Cents

Okay, just a quick one today to round out the week...

First up, check this out... Syndctd Entertainment and International Films Management are releasing Perry Henzell’s cult classic The Harder They Come back into theaters for a limited time in the U.S. and U.K. starting on 9/5.  The film stars Jimmy Cliff.  Then later this year, Xenon Pictures is releasing the film on Blu-ray Disc.  All this is in honor of the film’s 40th Anniversary.  More information is available here.  Remember: “The hero can’t dead till the last reel!”

Warner Home Video is releasing the Paramount catalog title Terms of Endearment on Blu-ray Disc for the first time on 12/3 (SRP $19.98).  […]

Published in My Two Cents

Let’s start the day today with another new View from the Cheap Seats column from our very own Bud Elder, the cinematic Oracle of Oklahoma City!  As usual, Bud covers a range of film-related subjects – that I don’t wish to spoil here – and his thoughts are all worth reading.  Don’t miss it!

Meanwhile, back in Gotham City... Amazon.com is now taking pre-orders on the eventual Blu-ray release Neill Blomkamp’s Elysium.  Expect that to hit stores sometime right before Christmas we’d guess from Sony.  […]

Published in My Two Cents
Thursday, 22 August 2013 11:47

Reaching Out

Our topic today was prompted by a conversation I had after my dear friend Bill Thrash’s funeral a couple of weeks ago.  His surviving sister told me that when my pal, about whom I thought I knew everything, was 16, around 1954, in the small southeastern Oklahoma town of Ada, he commandeered a shitload of dimes and tried, to the very best of his ability, to call his hero, Frank Sinatra.

I started thinking then about how many of us have attempted to be in touch with our favorite movie star, director, producer, writer, composer or author?  I used to do that very thing a lot when I was single and bored.

Here are two stories that are so personal that I’ve never written about them before...  [...]

Afternoon, folks.  We’ve got some reviews for you today...

First, Doogan has delivered his thoughts on the Sony’s Blu-ray release of the recent Evil Dead remake.  Sounds like it’s okay if you have seen the original Sam Raimi films, but if you have it’s tough sledding.  It’s now available in stores.

Also, in honor of the theatrical debut of The World’s End, Tim Salmons has turned his attention to a pair of Universal catalog Blu-ray “Steelbook” re-issues, this time featuring a pair of his favorite comedies: Edgar Wright’s Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz!  Both are also now available.

Now let’s get to today’s release news... [...]

Published in My Two Cents
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