My Two Cents

All right... we’ve got some big 4K Ultra HD news today, folks.

We can now confirm the street dates for a number of new and catalog 4K Ultra HD titles that we’ve been hearing about from our sources for several months now. But enough independent sources are lining up now that we feel comfortable telling you the following:

Disney and Marvel’s Captain Marvel will arrive on Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD on 6/11.

That same day (6/11), Paramount is delivering 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi to 4K.

Universal Studios Home Entertainment has also set a few good catalog titles for release on 4K on 6/11, including Fast & Furious, Fast Five, and a Fast & Furious: 8 Movie Collection in 4K. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

Today’s Retro Release Day title here at The Bits is none other than Disney’s The Black Hole (1979), directed by Gary Nelson and released by Anchor Bay Entertainment on DVD back on March 30, 1999.

The film stars Maximilian Schell, Robert Forster, Joseph Bottoms, Yvette Mimieux, Anthony Perkins, and Ernest Borgnine, and features a terrific score by composer John Barry.

The single-disc release was a much-dreaded (and double-sided) DVD-10 release, a disc configuration known as a “flipper” to DVD veterans.

The reason for this was that the release included the film in both non-anamorphic (letterboxed) widescreen on one side, and full frame on the other.

Both sides of the disc also includes the film’s theatrical trailer and a gallery of images. Each version of the film also included Dolby Digital 5.1 audio. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

We’re starting a new tradition here at The Bits: Every Tuesday and Thursday, we’re officially celebrating Retro Release Day!

Each day, we’ll look back through The Bits’ archives and highlight a classic release on physical media.

Look for lots of DVDs titles, some older Blu-rays, and maybe even Laserdisc release or two. Who knows what we’ll find in the archives!

Longtime Bits readers will definitely remember these discs, and we’ll post pictures so you younger readers can get a look at discs of yore too.

Today’s title is nothing less that James Cameron’s The Abyss: Special Edition, released by 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment on DVD on March 21st, 2000. [Read on here...]

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Afternoon, folks. We’ve got some news reviews for you today, plus a couple of release announcements, a new special feature column and more!

First, the Blu-ray reviews... Tim has just posted his thoughts on Luca Guadagnino’s Suspiria (2018) from Lionsgate. And Dennis Sueling has offered his take on Rob Marshall’s Mary Poppins Returns from Disney. Both are worth a look, so we hope you enjoy them!

Also here at The Bits today, our own Michael Coate has just a new History, Legacy & Showmanship column looking back at Ken Hughes’ Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in honor of the film’s 50th anniversary. The piece features a great interview with film historian John Cork, an expert of all things Ian Flemming-related. Do give it a look. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

Boy, we’ve got a nice little bit of news for you all today...

Just a few days ago, I raved about the experience of seeing Sergei Bondarchuk’s War and Peace on the big screen. (You can read my thoughts on the experience here.) Well now, Criterion has just officially announced that it will highlight their June Blu-ray and DVD release slate!

The complete wave of titles includes a BD upgrade of A Film Trilogy by Ingmar Bergman (Through a Glass Darkly, Winter Light, and The Silence – Cat #209-211 – Blu-ray and DVD) on 6/4, George Stevens’ Swing Time (Cat #979 – Blu-ray and DVD) on 6/11, Bruno Dumont’s L’humanité (Cat #981 – Blu-ray and DVD) and La vie de Jésus (Cat #980 – Blu-ray and DVD) on 6/18, John Cameron Mitchell punk musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Cat #982 – Blu-ray and DVD) and – yes – Sergei Bondarchuk’s War and Peace (Cat #983 – Blu-ray and DVD) on 6/25! [Read on here...]

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This is just a VERY quick post today and we’ll be back tomorrow with more. But we’ve got some big news to share...

We’ve had the title on our 4K Ultra HD List here The Digital Bits for a while now, but news is finally starting to break that Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now: Final Cut will be screening at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival remastered in 4K from the original camera negative with Dolby Vision high dynamic range and a new Dolby Atmos audio mix.

So yes, you can expect a 4K physical media release from Lionsgate Home Entertainment later this year. Watch for it likely in August to coincide with celebrations of the film’s 40th anniversary. (However, note that this release has not yet been officially announced by Lionsgate – this information comes from news of the film’s Tribeca screening.)

No more details about this release are yet available, but you can read more here at Variety, which features this quote from Coppola:

“Restoring Apocalypse Now: Final Cut 40 years later has been a tremendous undertaking and joy that I am thrilled to be able to share with the world for the first time at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival. The audience will be able to see, hear and feel this film how I always hoped it could be — from the first ‘bang’ to the final whimper.”

So there you go. We’ll post more on this as soon as it’s officially announced.

Stay tuned...

(You can follow Bill on social media at these links: Twitter and Facebook)

 

Published in My Two Cents

We’ve got a bunch of news for you today, including both Blu-ray and 4K. But we’re going to start with some new reviews.

First of all, yesterday I posted my thoughts on Sony’s 4K Ultra HD release of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. The title streets on 3/19, and I’ll tell you... it may be my all-time favorite superhero film, period. That’s saying a lot, but it’s just really fresh, honest, and ingenious in the way it presents the comic book genre on the big screen with groundbreaking animation. It’s a pretty nice 4K release too, so do give it a look.

Also today, Tim has delivered a review of Disney’s Ralph Breaks the Internet on regular Blu-ray and Dennis has taken a look at Universal’s Mary Queen of Scots as well. Enjoy!

Now then... a couple items before we get to the release news... [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, let’s get right down to it. I’ve been reluctant to talk about the prospects of James Cameron’s The Abyss and True Lies arriving on Blu-ray (and dare we hope 4K) in 2019 because we’ve had SO many solid reports that these films were finally coming only to see them evaporate. And when I’ve tried to find out why, Fox always pointed at Cameron and Cameron always pointed back at Fox. What I finally figured out is that Cameron has just been too distracted with other projects to approve new transfers of these films, first with diving to the bottom of the ocean and more recently with his Avatar prequels.

As longtime Bits readers will be well aware, both films were expected for their last major anniversaries in 2014. We know for a fact that 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment had even prepared new Blu-ray releases (most recently rumored for release in 2017), but Cameron never got around to approving the new transfers, so the Blu-ray releases never happened. The transfers were quietly released to the pay cable movie channels only.

Well, now it’s five years later. 2019 officially marks the 30th anniversary of The Abyss and the 25th of True Lies. Naturally, that means Bits readers have been asking me for weeks about the prospects of finally seeing these films released on Blu-ray (and, again, dare we hope 4K). I’ve even spoken to studio sources about this recently. And again, what I learned was that the ball was still in James Cameron’s court. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents
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