My Two Cents

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Morning, folks!

All right, Tim is going to have a couple of new disc reviews posted here at the site shortly, and I’ll be back tomorrow with more release news, plus my own in-depth review of Andor: The Complete First Season in 4K Ultra HD.

I’ve actually been working on that over the weekend, but my father-in-law has also been visiting with us here for the past week or so, and he’s headed off to the airport this evening for his return flight home. So, real life calls.

In the meantime, we do have a few pieces of release news that are kind of important to share with you all this morning. So let’s get right to them...

The first comes to us by way of the Warner Bros. Shop in the UK, which has now revealed that Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest (1959) is finally coming to 4K Ultra HD later this year in honor of the film’s 65th anniversary! We don’t yet have a street date, but you can see the expanded packaging mock-up below the break. [Read on here...]

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Afternoon, folks! We’ve got a few new disc reviews, some great release news, and a fine bit of streaming TV news for you today as well! First as always, those reviews...

Kicking things off, Stephen has turned in his thoughts on Michael Mann’s Ferrari (2023), as released in 4K Ultra HD by Eagle Pictures in Italy. It’s a great little film, and here’s hoping that Neon and Decal will see fit to release it here in the States in 4K soon as well.

Stephen has also reviewed Lucio Fulci’s City of the Living Dead (1980) in 4K Ultra HD from our friends at Arrow Video.

Not to be outdone, Tim has turned in his thoughts on Jesús Franco’s Night of the Blood Monster (1970), aka The Bloody Judge, in 4K Ultra HD from the good people over at Blue Underground.

Dennis has offered his take on Theodore J. Flicker’s The President’s Analyst (1967) on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber Studio Classics.

And Stuart rounds things out today with his review of Yasuharu Hasebe’s Black Tight Killers (1966) on Blu-ray from the team at Radiance Films.

As always, more reviews are on the way so be sure to keep your eyes peeled for them!

Now then, a quick follow up. As many of you know, we’ve been running an interactive poll on our Patreon and Twitter/X pages over the past week on behalf of Lionsgate Home Entertainment. The question was: For the studio’s new 4K catalog Steelbook line, would you prefer new custom artwork or original poster artwork? Nearly three thousand of you voted in all (2,959 to be exact), with 1,166 votes (38.41%) for new custom artwork and 1,793 votes (60.59%) for original poster artwork. [Read on here...]

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To kick off a new week today, we have some interesting release news and a new disc review to share as well. Let’s get to the latter first...

Tim has offered his thoughts on Michele Soavi’s The Church (1989) in 4K Ultra HD from our friends at Severin Films.

More reviews are forthcoming this week, so be sure to stay tuned for them.

Also today here at The Bits, we’ve expanded our Patreon poll about Lionsgate 4K catalog Steelbooks to our Twitter/X page with just a day and a half left. The question is: Lionsgate Home Entertainment is developing a new line of 4K Ultra HD catalog Steelbooks, including many titles released previously as Best Buy exclusives, and they’d like your opinion: Would you prefer the covers to 1) feature newly-created custom artwork, or 2) the film’s original poster artwork? You can vote right now here on Patreon or here on Twitter/X and please take a moment to do so before the polls end on Wednesday. Thank you!

Now then, the big release news today is that Criterion has just announced its July 2024 slate of Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD titles, and this batch has some real gems as well as a couple of surprises. [Read on here...]

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Before we get to today’s release news, we’ve got a few new disc reviews for you to enjoy here at The Bits...

Tim has reviewed the Looney Tunes: Collector’s Choice – Volume 2 Blu-ray set from the Warner Archive Collection.

Dennis has reviewed R.O. Blechman and Christian Blackwood’s The Soldier’s Tale (1984) on Blu-ray from Kino Classics, along with Jerry London’s Rent-a-Cop (1988) on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber Studio Classics.

And Stuart has offered his thoughts on Édouard Molinaro’s The Road to Shame (1959) on Blu-ray from Kino Classics, as well as Guy Green’s Diamond Head (1962) on Blu-ray from our friends at Imprint Films.

More reviews are on the way, as always, so be sure to keep your eyes peeled for them!

Now then... the big news today is that Warner Bros. Discovery Home Entertainment has officially set Denis Villeneuve’s Dune: Part Two (2024) for release on Blu-ray, DVD, 4K Ultra HD, and 4K UHD + Blu-ray Steelbook on 5/14, just as we expected. The Digital release is due on 4/16, which is just a week away.

Look for the 4K disc to include Dolby Vision and HDR10 high dynamic range and Dolby Atmos audio. Unfortunately, we’ve confirmed with the studio that the aspect ratio for all of these SKUs will be 2.39:1 only, matching the previous release of Dune: Part One (2021) on disc. These discs will not replicate the variable IMAX aspect ratio in 1.78:1, like the studio’s past 4K releases of Christopher Nolan’s films do (including TENET, Dunkirk, The Dark Knight, etc).

This is something that a LOT of Dune and 4K fans very much want. Since the discs went up for pre-order a few weeks ago, I’ve gotten many hundreds of questions about it. And since I shared the 2.39 confirmation on Twitter yesterday, the post has been seen by more than 1 million people! So there is clearly very keen interest in a disc release that does have the IMAX ratio. Hopefully, Warner is planning an IMAX 4K and BD disc re-release in the future. [Read on here...]

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All right, I hope all of you guys here in the States checked out the solar eclipse this morning! Here in Southern California, the Moon only covered about 54% of the Sun at maximum, but I took the scope out this morning anyway and got a couple good pictures that I’ll share below the break.

In the meantime, the big news today is unofficial, but it comes from enough retail sources now that I’m confident it’s accurate: Warner Bros. Discovery Home Entertainment will release Denis Villeneuve’s Dune: Part Two (2024) on Blu-ray, DVD, 4K Ultra HD, and 4K UHD Steelbook on 5/14. And while we’ll have to wait for the official press release (expected anytime now) to be sure, based on the promo images the studio is sharing with some of the pre-order listings, it looks like the aspect ratio for the title may be full 1.78:1. This would replicate the maximum IMAX image area for home viewing. Again, that’s not certain yet. So fingers crossed, we’ll know more very soon. You can see the 4K Steelbook art at left and also below the break.

[Editor’s Note: The 5/14 date is now official per WBHE, but we’ve confirmed that the aspect ratio will be 2.39:1 only. Don’t attack the messenger please; we’re only passing on what we’ve learned.]

Also newly announced today by Lionsgate is Francis Ford Coppola’s One from the Heart: Reprise (1982), which will finally arrive here in the States in 4K Ultra HD on 5/7. The entire film has been restored from the original camera negative and six minutes of footage have been added back to the film by Coppola himself. The 4K package will include a UHD disc of the new cut plus the original 1982 Theatrical Version on Blu-ray, with all of its legacy special features. [Read on here...]

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We have a new disc review for all of you to enjoy today here at The Bits...

Our own Tim Salmons has just weighed in on the Warner Archive Collection’s Looney Tunes: Collector’s Choice – Volume 1 Blu-ray, which includes 20 classic animated shorts from 1945 to 1959, among them some real rarities. Tim will be reviewing Volume 2 and Volume 3 on Blu-ray soon as well, so watch for those to follow in the coming days.

We’ve also updated our 4K Ultra HD Release List here at The Bits today with some new titles and Amazon.com pre-order links, so you’ll definitely want to check that out here.

And over on our Patreon page today, I’ve shared a feature entitled Steelbooks (And Why Hollywood Loves Them)! that looks back at the origins and history of Steelbook packaging, and why it’s become so popular with both the Hollywood studios and retailers. This post is free and open to everyone for a couple of reasons.

First, we want to give you all a taste of the kinds of content we’re creating exclusively for our paying supporters on Patreon. And second, we’re going to be running a poll on our Patreon page on behalf of a major Hollywood studio that wants your opinion on a Steelbook project they’re considering. That will appear in the next couple days there and it too will be free and available to all. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

Welcome to a new week, Bits-ers! Hope you all had a good one, including all those of you who attended WonderCon in Anaheim this weekend.

Today is obviously April Fool’s Day, but rest assured we aren’t going to waste time with such tomfoolery here at the site this afternoon because we’ve got more new disc reviews for you, as well as some really great actual news too.

Let’s get to those reviews first. Today we have...

Stephen’s review of Ted Kotcheff’s North Dallas Forty (1979) in 4K Ultra HD from Kino Lorber Studio Classics, as well as his take on György Kovásznai’s Bubble Bath (1980) on Blu-ray from Vinegar Syndrome.

And Stuart’s look at William Grefé’s Impulse (1974) on Blu-ray from Grindhouse Releasing, as well as Emmanuel Carrère’s Between Two Worlds (2021) on Blu-ray from Cohen Media Group.

Late last week, we also posted Tim’s reviews of Sam Raimi’s Drag Me to Hell (2009) in both regular and limited edition Blu-ray, as well as his reviews of Quentin Tarantino (etc)’s Grindhouse (2007) in both regular and limited edition Blu-ray, all from Via Vision’s Imprint Films.

And not to be outdone, Dennis has also reviewed Peter Yates’ The Dresser (1983) on Blu-ray from Imprint as well. [Read on here...]

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We’ve got one more new disc review for you all to enjoy today, which is Stephen’s look at Simon Wincer’s Quigley Down Under (1990) in 4K Ultra HD from Shout! Studios—a new Shout Select title.

We’ve also updated our 4K Ultra HD Release List here at The Bits, and we’ve posted a big update of the Release Dates & Cover Art section (click on Cover Art in the navigation bar at the top of the page) with all the latest Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD cover artwork and Amazon.com pre-order links. Don’t forget, any time you order literally anything from Amazon after clicking to them through one of our links, you’re helping to support our work here at The Bits and we really appreciate it.

And I just posted an interesting column over on our Patreon page that details some of the extraordinary changes currently underway behind-the-scenes within the home video industry—changes that begin with Disney making a deal for Sony to take over their physical media production but definitely don’t end there. I think you’ll find it interesting—and don’t forget that joining our Patreon is also a great way to help support our work here at the site. [Read on here...]

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We’re starting this week with a trio of great new disc reviews here at The Bits, including...

Stuart’s thoughts on Kenneth Branagh’s A Midwinter’s Tale (1995) on Blu-ray from Castle Rock Entertainment via the always excellent Warner Archive Collection.

And Stephen’s take on Oldřich Lipský’s The Mysterious Castle in the Carpathians (1981) on Blu-ray from Deaf Crocodile and Vinegar Syndrome, as well as his look at John Carpenter’s Starman (1984) in 4K Ultra HD from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment as featured in their excellent Columbia Classics 4K Ultra HD Collection: Volume 4 box set!

All of these are fascinating titles and well worth a look.

Before we continue, I mentioned Warner Archive a moment ago: All of us here at The Digital Bits would like to take a moment today to salute our dear friend George Feltenstein and everyone who has contributed to the Warner Archive Collection over the years—the fan-favorite boutique label just celebrated its 15th anniversary on Saturday! Here’s to many more years and all the fantastic Blu-ray and DVD catalog titles to come. Well done, folks!

In announcement news today, Kino Lorber Studio Classics has just set Mark DiSalle’s The Perfect Weapon (1991) and Stephen Norrington’s Death Machine (1994) for Blu-ray release on 5/21. The company has also revealed that Gary Nelson’s Noble House (1988) miniseries is coming soon to Blu-ray, and also that Richard Stanley’s Dust Devil (1992) is coming soon to both Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

We have just one new disc review for you today (but a lot more are coming next week): Dennis’ look at Billy Wilder’s Witness for the Prosecution (1957) on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber Studio Classics.

Meanwhile, we have some good announcement news today, so let’s get right to it...

First up this afternoon, our friends at The Warner Archive Collection have just revealed more great new Blu-ray titles that are all due to street on 4/30, including Charles Brabin’s The Mask of Fu Manchu (1932), Fred Zinnemann’s The Nun’s Story (1959), William Wyler’s Friendly Persuasion (1956), Francis Ford Coppola’s The Rain People (1969) and You’re a Big Boy Now (1966), and finally a Hanna-Barbera Double Feature of Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island (1998) and Scooby-Doo: Return to Zombie Island (2019)!

We’ll share all of the cover art and Amazon pre-order links as soon as they go live, but in the meantime you can see The Rain People at left.

Moving on, Kino Lorber Studio Classics has just set both Mark DiSalle’s The Perfect Weapon (1991) and Sam Firstenberg’s Revenge of the Ninja (1983) for release on Blu-ray Disc on 5/21. [Read on here...]

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