"The movie business is macabre. Grotesque.
It is a combination of a football game
and a brothel."
-- Federico Fellini
Dec 182018

Merry Christmas from the crew at OnVideo

From the Big Screen:

“Venom,” “The House With a Clock in its Wall,” “The Predator,” “A Simple Favor” and “Fahrenheit 11/9.” For more information on other releases this week, see the Weekly Guide to Home Video Releases.

This Week’s Highlights:

There’s two interesting releases from The Criterion Collection this week.
“Panique” (1946): Proud, eccentric, and antisocial, Monsieur Hire (Michel Simon) has always kept to himself. But after a woman turns up dead in the Paris suburb where he lives, he feels drawn to a pretty young newcomer to town (Viviane photo for PaniqueRomance), discovers that his neighbors are only too ready to be suspicious of him, and is framed for the murder. Based on a novel by Georges Simenon, Julien Duvivier’s first film after his return to France from Hollywood finds the acclaimed poetic realist applying his consummate craft to darker, moodier ends. Propelled by its two deeply nuanced lead performances, the tensely noirish Panique exposes the dangers of the knives-out mob mentality, delivering as well a pointed allegory of the behavior of Duvivier’s countrymen during the war. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc, with new 2K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray … photo for Sawdust and Tinsel “Sawdust and Tinsel” (1953): Ingmar Bergman presents the battle of the sexes as a ramshackle, grotesque carnival of humiliation in “Sawdust and Tinsel,” one of the master’s most vivid early works and his first of many collaborations with the great cinematographer Sven Nykvist. The story of the charged relationship between a turn-of-the-20th-century circus owner (Åke Grönberg) and his younger mistress (Harriet Andersson), a horseback rider in the traveling show, the film features dreamlike detours and twisted psychosexual power plays, making for a piercingly brilliant depiction of physical and spiritual degradation. On Blu-ray Disc, with new 2K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack.

In “Bloody Birthday” (1981), The Bad Seed meets Halloween in a deliciously twisted early ’80s slasher offering directed by Ed Hunt (“The Brain”) photo for Bloody Birthday and starring the always loveable Lori Lethin (“Return to Horror High,” “The Pre”y). Debbie, Curtis and Steven may seem cute as buttons. But their angelic facade conceals the wicked, murderous streak given to them having all been born under the same solar eclipse. With the grown-ups around them blissfully unaware of their little darlings’ homicidal tendencies, the evil brats begin to bump off the adults one-by-one. By gun. By arrow. By cake. Bye-bye! Mixing the killer-kid subgenre with elements of the then-booming slice-and-dice movie, “Bloody Birthday” shocks and appalls with its scenes of young children shooting, strangling and bludgeoning their way through the local population. Formats: Blu-ray with original uncompressed mono audio. From Arrow Video/MVD Entertainment.

Buzzin’ the ‘B’s:

In “Assassination Nation” (2018), starring Odessa Young, Hari Nef, Suki Waterhouse and Abra, high school senior Lily and her three best friends live in a world of selfies, emojis, snaps and sexts. But when their town of Salem is besieged by a massive data hack, resulting in half the citizens’ private info spewed into the public view, the community descends into anarchy. Lily is targeted photo for Assassination Nationafter being falsely blamed for the hack—and bands together with her friends to survive a long, blood-soaked night. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Universal … In “Monster Party” (2018), starring Julian McMahon, Robin Tunney, Sam Strike, Erin Moriarty, Lance Reddick, Brandon Micheal Hall, Virginia Gardner and Diego Boneta, three thieves plan a daring heist posing as waiters at a fancy Malibu mansion dinner party in hopes of paying off an urgent debt. When their plan goes horribly wrong, the trio realizes the dinner guests are not as innocent as they seem and their simple cash grab becomes a violent and desperate battle to get out of the house alive. On DVD, Blu-ray, from RLJE Films … In “The Super” (2017), starring Patrick John Flueger, Val Kilmer and Louisa Krause, former cop Phil takes a job as a superintendent in a Manhattan apartment building. When a teen goes missing, along with several other tenants, Phil suspects a sadistic murderer may be roaming the eerie corridors and that his daughters’ lives are in danger. But whom can he trust when everybody around him has something to hide? On DVD, Blu-ray, from Lionsgate … photo for Air Strike “Air Strike” (2018 — China), starring Ye Liu, Bruce Willis, Nicholas Tse, Su Ma, William Wai-Ting Chan, Bingbing Fan, Wei Fan and Adrien Brody, ios an action-adventure about the courage of China’s citizens during WWII. As a U.S. Army colonel (Willis) trains Chinese aviators to battle Japanese fighters, a hotheaded pilot begs to fly a powerful bomber that could stop the attacks. Meanwhile, a team of spies and refugees must carry a game-changing decoder device through the war-torn countryside. On DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, from Lionsgate … “Life Itself” (2018), starring Oscar Isaac, Olivia Wilde, Mandy Patinkin, Annette Bening, Antonio Banderas and Samuel L. Jackson, is the tale of two long-lived lovers highlights the splendors of life. From their lighthearted romance to the arrival of their baby, every rewarding aspect of life is touched upon. Though the couple endures a series of hardships, the moral is that life’s wonders invariably eclipse periods of woe. With a healthy dose of laughter, love, and resilience, this New York duo discovers a profound appreciation for both the certainties and unpredictabilities in life. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Amazon.

Heading up the reissues this week is the Blu-ray debut of “The Jerk” (1979), directed by Carl Reiner and starring Steve Martin (in his feature film debut), Bernadette Peters, Rob Reiner, Bill Macy and M. Emmet Walsh. Martin stars as Navin Johnson, the adopted son of a poor black sharecropping family in Mississippi. When he learns that the world is a much bigger place than he’d ever imagined, Navin sets out on a quest to find his “special purpose.” His adventures photo for The Jerk lead him to encounter a would-be assassin, jobs in carnivals and gas stations, a life-saving dog, romance with the girl of his dreams and more money than he could ever spend. But his life in the clouds may come crashing down when the source of his new fame and fortune creates disastrous side effects. 40th Anniversary Edition remastered from a brand-new 2K scan. From Shout! Factory … “Dracula Prince of Darkness” (1966): This ghoulish tale from Hammer’s golden era includes both the UK and US version of the film and a new 4K scan of the US version of the interpositive from the 20th Century Fox vaults. Four English tourists find themselves stranded in the mysterious village of Karlsbad, a sinister and remote place with a deadly, dark legend. Their journey leads them to an abandoned castle where a nightmarish destiny awaits them: an evil in need of resurrection, a blood-craving beast known only as Count Dracula, Prince of Darkness (Christopher Lee).On Blu-ray from Scream Factory … “Topper Takes a Trip” (1938): Starring Constance Bennett, Roland Young, Billie Burke, Alan Mowbray, Verree Teasdale and Franklin Pangborn. Second in the “Topper” series. To photo for Topper Takes a Trip gain entry to heaven, ghost Marion Kirby (Bennett) has to do some good on earth. That means reuniting a divorcing couple, Cosmo (Young) and Clara Topper (Burke). To be fair, Marion played a part in their troubles: Clara mistakenly thought Marion was Cosmo’s mistress. On Blu-ray from VCI Entertainment … “Starman Collector’s Edition” (1984): Directed by John Carpenter and starring Jeff Bridges, Karen Allen, Charles Martin Smith, Richard Jaeckel. Visionary filmmaker John Carpenter presents a romantic science fiction odyssey starring Jeff Bridges as an innocent alien from a distant planet who learns what it means to be a man in love. When his spacecraft is shot down over Wisconsin, Starman (Bridges) arrives at the remote cabin of a distraught young widow, Jenny Hayden (Karen Allen), and clones the form of her dead husband. The alien convinces Jenny to drive him to Arizona, explaining that if he isn’t picked up by his mothership in three days, he’ll die. Hot on their trail are government agents, intent on capturing the alien, dead or alive. En route, Starman demonstrates the power of universal love, while Jenny rediscovers her human feelings for passion. On Blu-ray from Scream Factory.

Foreign Films:

“An Afghan Love Story” (2013 — Afghanistan/France), starring Mustafa Abdulsatar, Wajma Bahar and Haji Gul Aser, is a Grand Jury Prize Nominee and Winner of the World Cinema Screenwriting Award at Sundance and an Official Selection at Cannes. In Kabul, Mustafa, a handsome waiter, charms a pretty young law student named Wajma. The pair begin a clandestine relationship, ever mindful photo for An Afghan Love Story of the societal rules that forbid intimacy. But when Wajma discovers she is pregnant and Mustafa refuses to commit to marriage, she is left to face the terrifying consequences of their actions on her own. The volatile situation quickly turns violent when Wajma’s father enters the picture, and is compelled to take action. But how will he direct his anger, and who will ultimately bear the brunt of his rage? On DVD from Film Movement … “Not of this World” (1999 — Italy), starring Margherita Buy and Silvio Orlando, is a magical story of love, family, and self-discovery. The Academy Award-winning film follows the lives of a nun named Caterina, a lonely laundry owner named Ernesto, a baby named Faunto, and everyone else that are unknowingly a part of this dramatic tale. Caterina, a young nun, is about to take her final vows, but her life is turned upside down when fate literally places an abandoned infant, Faunto, into her arms. As she searches for the child’s mother, she meets Ernesto. Together, they search for Faunto’s mother, and re-evaluate their own lives. On DVD from Facets.

Special Interest:

“Dust 2 Glory Special Edition” (2018) is from acclaimed director Dana Brown (“Step Into Liquid,” “Highwater”). This much-anticipated follow-up to “Dust to Glory” tracks the world’s toughest point-to-point desert race, the SCORE Baja 1000. Chronicles the brutal beauty of the race and high-octane action sequences as these ground-pounding, 900-horsepower Trophy Trucks, Motorcycles, ATVs and everything in between roar through the Baja Peninsula. The two-disc set also includes the mini-documentary “Baja Desert Championship: Origins,” which explores the terrain, beauty, culture and people who make the world’s longest point-to-point race as unique as it is. On DVD from Magnolia Home Entertainment/Magnet Label … photo for Coby In the small town of Chagrin Falls, Ohio, deep in the American Midwest, Suzanna begins a gender transition to become a boy, named “Coby” (2017). Throughout this period of transformation, Coby and his loved ones must confront their own preconceived notions of gender and sexuality while facing difficult decisions and prejudice. Combining excerpts from Coby’s video dairy with candid, heartfelt interviews from his closest friends and family, Christian Sonderegger’s debut feature is an intimate and sensitive look at this timely subject. On DVD from Film Movement … MVD Entertainment has two volumes of TV shows by the inimitable Dick Cavett, who since 1968 has been host of his own talk show, in a variety of formats and on a number of television and radio formats. “The Dick Cavett Show: And That’s The Way It Is” includes episodes that aired between 1968 through 1996 and feature some of the best known news reporters of the era including Walter Cronkite, Dan Rather, Tom Brokaw, Walters, Barbara Wallace and Diane Sawyer; “The Dick Cavett Show: Inside The Minds Of: Vol. 1” includes episodes that aired between 1968 through 1996 and feature some of the wittiest, edgy comics of the era including Robin Williams, Bobcat Goldthwait, Richard Lewis and Gilbert Gottfried … “Jane Fonda: Lean Routine and Lower Body Solution” packages together two of the best-selling fitness videos of all time, digitally remastered. “Lower Body Solution” is a complete workout for abs, buns, and thighs. Adaptable for all fitness levels, the low-impact choreography is user friendly to beginners, while optional bench aerobics add variety and challenge for intermediate and advanced exercisers. “Lean Routine” is the ultimate fat-burning workout for everyone. It includes low impact high energy aerobics, applicable for beginners through advanced. On DVD from Lightyear Entertainment … photo for Mantovani -- The King of Strings “Mantovani — The King of Strings” (2014): Annunzio Mantovani was the most successful orchestra leader ever, selling 70 million records from the 1950s to the 1970s. Known for his unmistakable cascading strings, this documentary is the story of the man and his music. Performing for sell-out crowds across the world throughout the ’50s with hits such as “Charmaine,” “Moon River” and “Some Enchanted Evening,” he was Britain’s most successful recording star before The Beatles. On DVD from Filmrise … “The Zen Diaries of Garry Shandling” (2018) is Judd Apatow’s remarkable portrait of the exceptionally complex, deeply spiritual and endlessly funny comedy icon Garry Shandling. From a 10-year-old Garry losing his big brother Barry to cystic fibrosis at age 13 in 1960, to a chance encounter with comic legend George Carlin and an impulsive, post-college move to Los Angeles in 1976, Shandling’s unlikely path toward commercial success consistently remained at odds with his own personal search for inner peace. The documentary spans the decades from Shandling’s early childhood in the 1950s in Arizona up to his untimely death in 2016, taking viewers on an intimate journey through a collage of personal testimonials, archival footage and most importantly Shandling’s own handwritten words on life, loss, love, meditation and more, captured in an extensive library of personal notebooks. On DVD and Blu-ray from HBO.

All DVDs and Blu-rays are screened on a reference system consisting of an Oppo BDP-83 Blu-ray Disc Player w/SACD & DVD-Audio, a Rotel RSX-972 Surround Sound Receiver, and Phase Technology 1.1 (front), 33.1 (center), and 50 (rear) speakers, and Power 10 subwoofer.

 Posted by on December 18, 2018 No Responses »
Dec 112018

From the Big Screen:

“The Equalizer 2,” “Peppermint,” “Smallfoot” and “Colette.” For more information on other releases this week, see the Weekly Guide to Home Video Releases.

This Week’s Highlights:

There’s a bevy of classic films due out this week, starting out with the fabulous collection, “De Palma & De Niro: The Early Films (Limited Edition).”
In 1963, Robert De Niro stepped in front of a movie camera for the first time. The resulting film, a low-budget black and white comedy called “The Wedding Party,” would take three years to complete, and another three years to be released, but it would also establish a hugely important working relationship for the aspiring actor. One of the filmmakers, long before he became synonymous with suspense photo for De Palma & De Niro: The Early Films (Limited Edition)thanks to “Carrie”, “Dressed to Kill” and other classics, was Brian De Palma. He and De Niro would team up again in the next few years for two more comedies, both with a countercultural bent. “Greetings”, the first to receive an X certificate in the United States, is a freewheeling satire focusing on a trio of twentysomething friends — a conspiracy theorist, a filmmaker, and a voyeur played by De Niro — as they try to avoid the Vietnam War draft. “Hi, Mom!”, originally named “Son of Greetings,” returns to De Niro’s voyeur, now an aspiring maker of adult films, for another humorous glimpse at late-sixties society, this time turning its attentions to experimental theater, cinéma vérité, the African American experience, and the white middle classes. Brought together for the first time — and each newly restored by Arrow Films especially for this release — these three films offer a fascinating insight into the early careers of two of American cinema’s major talents. New restoration from a 2K scan of “The Wedding Party” from the original film negative; new restoration from a 2K scan of “Greetings” and “Hi, Mom!” from original film materials. Original uncompressed mono soundtracks. On Blu-ray, from Arrow Video/MVD Entertainment … From Arrow Video’s US sister label, Arrow Academy, comes photo for The Apartment “The Apartment.” In 1960, following the success of their collaboration on “Some Like it Hot,” director Billy Wilder reteamed with actor Jack Lemmon for what many consider the pinnacle of their respective careers: “The Apartment.” C.C. Bud Baxter (Lemmon) is a lowly Manhattan office drone with a lucrative sideline in renting out his apartment to adulterous company bosses and their mistresses. When Bud enters into a similar arrangement with the firm s personnel director, J.D. Sheldrake (Fred MacMurray), his career prospects begin to look up … and up. But when he discovers that Sheldrake’s mistress is Fran Kubelik (Shirley MacLaine), the girl of his dreams, he finds himself forced to choose between his career and the woman he loves … . Winner of five Academy Awards, including Best Picture, “The Apartment” features a wealth of Hollywood’s finest talent on both sides of the camera at the top of their game. By turns cynical, heart-warming and hilarious, Wilder’s masterpiece now shines like never before in this all-new, 4K-restored edition from the original camera negative, with original uncompressed PCM mono audio. On Blu-ray … MVD Entertainment has on hand a new pressing of photo for Maniac “Maniac” (1980), in a three-disc limited edition (two Blu-rays, soundtrack CD) 4K restoration from the original camera negative, packaged with a 3D lenticular slipcover — only 10,000 available. Frank Zito (a career performance by writer-executive producer Joe Spinell of “Rocky” and “The Godfather” fame) is a deeply disturbed man, haunted by the traumas of unspeakable childhood abuse. And when these horrific memories begin to scream inside his mind, Frank prowls the seedy streets of New York City to stalk and slaughter innocent young women. Now Frank has begun a relationship with a beautiful photographer (Caroline Munro of “The Spy Who Loved Me”), yet his vile compulsions remain. These are the atrocities of a human monster. This is the story of a Maniac. Directed by William Lustig and featuring landmark gore effects by Tom Savini, this relentlessly shocking and disturbing film was originally banned or censored all over the world due to its graphic violence. Now Blue Underground is thrilled to present MANIAC in a brand-new 4K Restoration from its recently discovered 16mm original camera negative, overflowing with hours of new and archival extras.

From The Criterion Collection there’s photo for A Dry White Season “A Dry White Season” (1989). With this bracing drama, made at the climax of the anti-apartheid movement, director Euzhan Palcy issued a devastating indictment of South Africa’s racist government — and made history in the process, becoming the first black woman to direct a Hollywood studio film. White schoolteacher Ben Du Toit (Donald Sutherland) lives in Johannesburg and remains blissfully incurious about the lives of his black countrymen until a wave of brutal repression comes crashing down on his gardener (Winston Ntshona), bringing Du Toit face-to-face with harsh political realities. Based on a celebrated novel by André Brink and rooted in the first-hand research the Martinican Palcy did in South Africa into the way black people lived under apartheid, “A Dry White Season” is unflinching in its depiction of violence and its chronicling of injustice, making for a galvanizing tribute to those willing to sacrifice everything to fight oppression. On DVD, Blu-ray, with new 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed stereo soundtrack on the Blu-ray … and photo for Forty Guns “Forty Guns” (1957). Hollywood legend Barbara Stanwyck saddled up with writer-director Samuel Fuller for the pulp maestro’s most audacious Western, a boldly feminist spin on the genre that pivots effortlessly between ribald humor, visceral action, and disarming tenderness. High-riding rancher Jessica Drummond (Stanwyck) commands a 40-strong posse of cowboys, ruling Cochise County, Arizona, without challenge. When U.S. marshal Griff Bonnell (Barry Sullivan) and his brothers arrive in town with a warrant for one of her hired guns, Jessica begins to fall for the lawman even as he chips away at her authority. With astonishing black-and-white CinemaScope photography, hard-boiled dialogue laced with double entendres, and a fiery performance by Stanwyck at her most imperious, “Forty Guns” is a virtuoso display of Fuller’s sharpshooting talents. On DVD, Blu-ray, with new 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray. .

From TV to Disc:

“Instinct: Season One” (2018) is a four-disc set with all 13 episodes. Alan Cumming stars as Dr. Dylan Reinhart, a former CIA operative who is lured back to his old life when the NYPD needs his help to stop a serial killer. He is a gifted author and university professor living a quiet life teaching psychopathic behavior to packed classes of adoring students. But when tenacious top NYPD detective photo for Lizzie Needham appeals to him to help her catch a serial murderer who is using Dylan’s first book as a tutorial, Dylan is compelled by the case and comes out of retirement. Though Dylan and Lizzie initially clash, when it comes to catching killers, they realize they will make an ideal team if they both trust their instincts. On DVD from CBS/Paramount … “Nathan For You” (2013-17) is a nine-disc set with all 30 episodes of Comedy Central’s series. Comedian Nathan Fielder uses his business degree and life experiences to help real small businesses turn a profit. But because of his unorthodox approach, Nathan’s genuine efforts to do good often draw real people into an experience far beyond what they signed up for. On DVD from Paramount … photo for Our Cartoon President: Season One with World Class Amenities “Our Cartoon President: Season One with World Class Amenities” (2018) is a three-disc set with 18 episodes. From executive producer Stephen Colbert comes a caricature of a president without character in an animated series that goes straight for the heartless. Go inside the revolving door that is Trump’s inner circle for an unfiltered free-for-all even Canadian healthcare would be proud of. From the president’s attempt to “win” the State of the Union to the army of Trump impersonators employed to comfort disaster victims, it’s the kind of rampant absurdity that can only be matched by the day-to-day reality of Trump’s America. On DVD from CBS/Paramount.

Buzzin’ the ‘B’s:

In “Christmas Blood” (2017 — Norway), starring Stig Henrik Hoff, Sondre Krogtoft Larsen, Truls Svendsen and Marte Sæteren, a psychopath dressed in a Santa Claus suit has been terrorizing Norway for the past 13 years. For as soon as the caroling starts, this demented Kris Kringle dispenses bloody ax blows regardless of whether you’ve been bad or good. As the holiday approaches on one snow-covered town filled with revelers, a pair of detectives work against time to find and photo for Christmas Blood arrest the bearded serial killer. Will they manage to stop this demented St. Nick before he kills again? From Artsploitation Films … “Lizzie” (2018), starring Chloë Sevigny, Kristen Stewart, Jamey Sheridan, Fiona Shaw and Kim Dickens, is a chilling reimagining of the Lizzie Borden murder case that reveals the many layers of the strange and fragile Lizzie Borden, who stood accused of the infamous 1892 axe murder of her family in Fall River, Massachusetts. An unmarried woman of 32 and a social outcast, Lizzie (Chloë Sevigny) lives a claustrophobic life under her father’s cold and domineering control. When Bridget Sullivan (Kristen Stewart), a young maid, comes to work for the family, Lizzie finds a sympathetic, kindred spirit — and a secret intimacy soon blossoms into a wicked plan. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Lionsgate … In “Deadman Standing” (2018), starring Luke Arnold, C. Thomas Howell, Richard Riehle and M.C. Gainey, a sheriff, a madam, and a dying boy risk their lives to save a troubled town in a bloodcurdling true tale of the Wild West. On DVD from Lionsgate … In “Death House” (2018), starribng a coterie of horror photo for Death Houseveterans, including Cody Longo, Cortney Palm, Adrienne Barbeau, Michael Berryman, Barbara Crampton, Sid Haig, Kane Hodder, Lloyd Kaufman, Bill Moseley, Tony Todd and Dee Wallace. a power breakdown during an exclusive tour inside a secret prison known as the Death House sends two agents fighting through a labyrinth of horrors while being pursued by a ruthless army of roaming inmates. As they fight to escape, the agents push toward the lowest depths of the facility where they learn a supernatural group of evil beings is their only chance for survival. On DVD from Cleopatra Entertainment … Bella Thorne stars in the spellbinding and romantic supernatural thriller “I Still See You” (2018). Ten years after an apocalyptic event left the world haunted by ghosts, Roni (Thorne) receives a threatening message from beyond the grave. Joining forces with Kirk, a mysterious classmate, Roni descends into a shadow world that blurs the bounds of the living and the dead — and begins a desperate race against time to stop a cunning killer. Co-stars Richard Harmon and Dermot Mulroney. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Lionsgate … The fantasy epic that smashed box office records in Korea reaches its thrilling climax with “Along With the Gods: The Two Worlds” (2017 — South Korea), starring Ha Jung-woo, Ju Ji-hoon, Kim Hyang-gi and Lee Jung-jae. As the deceased soul Su-hong and his three afterlife guardians face the remaining trials to obtain their reincarnation, the guardians come face to face with the buried truth of their tragic time on earth a photo for River Runs Red thousand years ago, culminating in a final battle with a rogue god. On DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, from Well Go USA … In “River Runs Red” (2018), starring Taye Diggs, George Lopez, John Cusack, Luke Hemsworth and Gianni Capaldi, respected Judge Charles Coleman (Diggs) and his wife have devoted their lives to law enforcement. The two are thrilled when their son is accepted into the police academy, but everything changes when he is shot by two corrupt cops and the official investigation finds no wrongdoing. After his trusted friend detective Horace (Cusack) finds evidence to the contrary, Charles joins forces with an anguished mechanic (Lopez) whose son was killed by the same cops and together they take the law into their own hands.On DVD, Blu-ray, 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray Combo, from Cinedigm … In “Await Further Instructions” (2018 — UK), starring Sam Gittins, Neerja Naik, Abigail Cruttenden and David Bradley, it’s Christmas Day and the Milgram family wake to find a mysterious black substance surrounding their house. Something monumental is clearly happening right outside their door, but what exactly — an industrial accident, a terrorist attack, nuclear war? Descending into terrified arguments, they turn on the television, desperate for any information. On screen a message glows ominously: “Stay Indoors and Await Further Instructions.” As the television exerts an ever more sinister grip, their paranoia escalates into bloody carnage. On DVD, Blu-ray from Dark Sky Films … In “Galveston” (2018), starrinbg Ben Foster, Elle Fanning, Beau Bridges, Lili Reinhart and Robert Aramayo, Roy (Foster) is a heavy-drinking criminal enforcer and mob hit man whose boss set him up in a double-cross scheme. After photo for Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2 Collector’s Edition BLU-RAY DEBUTkilling his would-be assassins before they could kill him, Roy discovers Rocky (Fanning), a young woman being held captive, and reluctantly takes her with him on his escape. Determined to find safety and sanctuary in Galveston, Roy must find a way to stop his boss from pursuing them while trying to outrun the demons from his and Rocky’s pasts. On DVD, Blu-ray, 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray Combo, from RLJE Films … And now, three horror films released on Blu-ray for the first time, from Scream Factory: “Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2 Collector’s Edition” (1984): Ricky is being released from a mental hospital, and he takes with him the terrifying memory of his brother Billy’s death and the memory of the Mother Superior who brought about his brother’s demise. For Ricky, starting a new life means avenging his brother’s death, which sets him on a blind journey of relentless photo for Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation BLU-RAY DEBUT revenge, leading ultimately to Mother Superior. And when he gets to her, not even her faith will be enough to stop Ricky as he follows in the family tradition of Christmas carnage. New 2K Scan of an archival theatrical print … “The Mangler” (1995): Directed by Tobe Hooper and starring Ted Levine and Robert Englund. New 4K print of the original camera negative from the uncut version. Based on Stephen King’s short story, this white-knuckle chiller follows a cop (Levine) as he investigates a series of grisly accidents — and uncovers a deadly town secret that has been hidden for years — a terrifying entity that threatens to destroy everything in its path — a laundry-folding machine has been possessed by a demon. With time running out and a young girl’s life in the balance, he races to destroy the beast before it’s too late … “Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation” (1994), starring Renée Zellweger, Matthew McConaughey and Robert Jacks. This collector’s edition features both the theatrical and director’s cuts of the fourth installment of the terrifying franchise. When a helpful family invites two lost couples in for a good ol’ down-home massacre, the prom night teens find themselves all dressed up … with no place to escape. To their dismay, the old farmhouse is home to Leatherface and his insane family of cannibalistic psychopaths.

On the Indie Front:

“The Sound and the Fury” (2014), starring James Franco, Tim Blake Nelson, Scott Haze Scott Haze, Loretta Devine and Ahna O’Reilly, is a filmic look at the trials and tribulations, decline and fall, of the Comptons, a once proud, aristocratic family living in the deep south during the early part of the 20th photo for The Sound and the Fury century, revealing the secrets and betrayals that tarnished the family name and continues to haunt the Compton children. Based on the novel by Nobel Prize-winning author William Faulkner — considered among the 20th century’s greatest works — “The Sound and the Fury” encapsulates the universal themes of social injustice, forbidden love and the death of honor. On DVD from Monarch Home Entertainment … “In Searching” (2018) Jake Borelli, Evan Hall, Aley Underwood, Jacob Grodnik. Jon returns home on his first trip from college to visit his friends Michelle and Cole, but when he’s challenged to a dangerous bike race by his nemesis, Erik, Jon discovers a magical locket during a horrific crash. He then embarks on an auspicious journey, finding much more than love and friendship as he becomes a man.

Foreign Films:

“The Captain” (2017 — Germany), starring Max Hubacher, is based on the arresting true story of the Executioner of Emsland. The film is a World War II tale like no other — a searing historical drama with undertones of absurd black comedy that presents the evils of Nazism and fascism as a devastating kind of game to be played by those most gullible and unscrupulous. It follows a young German army deserter, Pvt. Willi Herold (Hubacher), after he finds an abandoned Nazi captain’s uniform in the final weeks of World War II. Emboldened by the authority the uniform grants him, he amasses a band of stragglers who cede to his command despite the suspicions of some. Citing direct orders from the Fuhrer himself, he soon takes command of a camp holding German soldiers accused of desertion and embarks on a brutal mission of torture and slaughter, all in the name of “justice.” Increasingly intoxicated by the unquestioned authority, the enigmatic imposter soon discovers that many people will blindly follow the leader … whomever that may be. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Music Box Films … photo for Un Traductor In the wake of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, Malin (Rodrigo Santoro), a Russian literature professor at the University of Havana, is sent to translate for the Soviet children who have been brought to Cuba for medical treatment in “Un Traductor” (2018 — Cuba). While adapting to this emotionally demanding job, the Berlin Wall falls and a deep economic crisis hits the island. But Malin is so entrenched in the lives of the Chernobyl Children that he fails to notice his own family suffering. On DVD, from Film Movement … Set in 18th century Vienna, “Mademoiselle Paradis” (2017 — Germany/France) is the true story of Maria Paradis, a gifted piano player and friend of Mozart, who lost her eyesight as a child. Desperate to cure their talented daughter, her parents entrust Maria to the famous Dr. Franz Mesmer, whose theory about animal magnetism had attracted a wide following. Using the doctor’s controversial technique, Maria recovers her sight. But this miracle comes at a price as Maria progressively starts to lose her gift for music. She will have to choose: an ordinary life in the light or an extraordinary life in darkness, as a virtuoso. On DVD from First Run Features.

For the Family:

In “SK8 Dawg” (2018), starring Joey Lawrence, Sara Fletcher and David Arquette (as the voice of Buddy), everyone in Tommy’s life — his sister, his dad, his neighbor, even his dog — is an awesome skateboarder. Everyone except Tommy himself! Sick of getting teased for being a klutz, Tommy accepts a skate-off photo for Sgt. Stubby: An American Herochallenge from the local bully, Frankie. Can his friend Alice and his pooch, Buddy, teach Tommy to flip, ollie, grab, and slide in time for the big showdown? Recipient of the Dove Seal of Approval for all ages. On DVD from Lionsgate … “Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero” (2018) is based on an incredible true story and features an all-star voice cast including Logan Lerman, Helena Bonham Carter and Gerard Depardieu. This computer-animated feature shares the unbreakable bond between a young soldier and a stray dog who, for his valorous feats in World War I, is still recognized today as the first dog promoted to the rank of Sergeant in the U.S. Army, the most decorated dog in American history and is widely considered the forerunner to the U.S. Army’s working dog program. Returning home to a hero’s welcome, Stubby and Conroy toured the country leading victory parades and met three sitting U.S. presidents, among other honors. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Paramount.

Special Interest:

“The Advocates” (2018): Over half a million people are homeless in the United States — 25 percent of whom are in California. Amid public outcry over the ballooning homeless population in Los Angeles — nearly 54,000 people on any given night — three advocates with three different organizations show what the lost ideal of care in photo for The Advocatesthe community looks like amid a changing policy landscape. Intensely human and humanizing, this documentary provides a sweeping look at the historic and current causes of LA’s unprecedented crisis, largely due to defunded affordable housing. It goes behind the headlines with pragmatic stories of the transformative work that is possible when the right resources, funding, and compassion are applied. On DVD from Cinema Libre … “Perry Como’s Olde English Christmas”: The best friend a Christmas song ever had, the legendary and beloved Perry Como celebrated the yuletide season on television, radio and records for 50 years, delighting millions worldwide. In 1977, Mr. C traveled to England for his annual holiday TV special with much of the music and merriment taking place in an historic, festively decorated castle. British singing star Petula Clark joins Como along with recording artist Leo Sayer, Olympic figure skater John Curry and Irish actress Gemma Craven for a jolly song-filled excursion featuring traditional favorites such as “Silent Night,” “Joy to the World”, “We Wish You a Merry Christmas,” “O Come All Ye Faithful,” “Ave Maria,” and more. On DVD from MPI Media.

All DVDs and Blu-rays are screened on a reference system consisting of an Oppo BDP-83 Blu-ray Disc Player w/SACD & DVD-Audio, a Rotel RSX-972 Surround Sound Receiver, and Phase Technology 1.1 (front), 33.1 (center), and 50 (rear) speakers, and Power 10 subwoofer.

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