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


Feb 242020

From the Big Screen:

“Frozen II” and “Knives Out.” For more information on other releases this week, see the Weekly Guide to Home Video Releases.

This Week’s Best Bets

“Paris is Burning” (1990) Where does voguing come from, and what, exactly, is throwing shade? This landmark documentary provides a vibrant snapshot of the 1980s through the eyes of New York City’s African American and Latinx Harlem drag-ball scene. Made over seven years, “Paris Is Burning” photo for Paris is Burningoffers an intimate portrait of rival fashion “houses,” from fierce contests for trophies to house mothers offering sustenance in a world rampant with homophobia, transphobia, racism, AIDS, and poverty. Featuring legendary voguers, drag queens, and trans women-including Willi Ninja, Pepper LaBeija, Dorian Corey, and Venus Xtravaganza-Paris Is Burning brings it, celebrating the joy of movement, the force of eloquence, and the draw of community. “Paris Is Burning” was restored by the UCLA Film & Television Archive in conjunction with Sundance Institute and Outfest UCLA Legacy Project. Preservation was funded by Sundance Institute, Outfest, and the Andrew J. Kuehn Jr. Foundation. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc with new 2K digital restoration, supervised by director Jennie Livingston, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray, from The Criterion Collection … From René Clément, the acclaimed director of “Forbidden Games,” “Purple Noon” and “Joy House,” comes the top-notch thriller “The Deadly Trap (aka La Maison Sous Les Arbres)” (1971 — France), starring Faye Dunaway, Frank Langella, Barbara Parkins and Maurice Ronet. Jill and Philip (Dunaway and Langella) are an American couple who live in Paris with their two children. Their world is torn apart when the children go missing and may have been kidnapped. In a frantic struggle to recover them alive and well, the couple’s lives begin to fall apart at the seams, as Jill’s mental state deteriorates and Philip struggles to make sense of what is happening to them. Based on the bestselling novel “The Children Are Gone” by Arthur Cavanaugh. On DVD, Blu-ray, from KL Studio Classics … photo for Three Fantastic Journeys by Karel Zeman A one-of-a-kind silver-screen illusionist, Czechoslovak filmmaker Karel Zeman devoted his career to transporting viewers to realms beyond their wildest imagining. The deft, breathtaking combinations of live-action and animation techniques that he pioneered in the postwar years earned him comparisons to legends such as Georges Méliès, and an array of followers that includes Jan Švankmajer, Terry Gilliam, and Wes Anderson. Presented here are three of Zeman’s most enchanting fantasies, “Three Fantastic Journeys by Karel Zeman” — a boys’ adventure into the mists of prehistory, a Jules Verne-derived flight of fancy, and an exotic eighteenth-century tall tale — all of them treasure chests of wondrous sights, tactile textures, and headlong yarn-spinning that helped put Czechoslovak cinema on the international map. On DVD, Blu-ray, from The Criterion Collection … From Henri-Georges Clouzot, the legendary director of “The Wages of Fear” and “Diabolique,” comes the classic film noir, “Quai des Orfèvres (aka Jenny Lamour)” (1947 — France), co-written by Clouzot and Jean Ferry (“L’Enfer,” “Manon”). Come see the fabulous Jenny Lamour, the singer with stars in her eyes! Ignoring the protest of her covetous husband Maurice (Bernard Blier), Jenny (Suzy Delair) pursues a meeting with a lecherous movie financier. When Maurice attempts to crash the rendezvous, it’s murder! Enter Inspector Antoine (Louis Jouvet), whose seasoned instincts lead him down a circuitous path of alibis and deceit. Set within the vibrant dance halls and historic crime corridors of 1940s Paris, “Quai des Orfèvres” was beautifully shot in stunning black-and-white by Armand Thirard (“… And God Created Woman,” “La Vérité”). 4K Restoration. On DVD, Blu-ray, from KL Studio Classics.

Buzzin’ the ‘B’s:

In “The Beast and the Magic Sword” (1983 — Spain), starring Paul Naschy, Shigeru Amachi, Beatriz Escudero, Junko Asahina, Violeta Cela and Yoko Fuji. Lycanthrope Waldemar Daninsky goes from his native Europe to Japan in the 16th Century, seeking a way to cure himself of being a werewolf. Only a Japanese sorcerer named Kian and a magic silver sword can save him. Co-starring Japanese stage and screen veteran Shigeru Amachi, and shot in the studios of Toshiro Mifune, the film is a highly successful and colorful melding of European werewolf legends and dark Japanese fantasy. It features a fight between a werewolf and a tiger, an evil scarlet-cloaked witch who imprisons Daninsky, a sword fight with a troupe of ghost samurai, and many other unforgettable scenes. This is the first Blu-ray release of this film and its first-ever US release and includes both a full-frame version and a widescreen version. 4k digitally restored transfer from a film negative. From Mondo Macabro … photo for Deadly Manor An old, dark house. A maniac on the loose. An orgy of bloodlust! All the hallmarks of late master of Spanish macabre José Ramón Larraz (“Edge of the Axe,” “Vampyres”) are present and correct in “Deadly Manor” (1990 — Italy), the final horror movie from one of the genre’s most unheralded filmmakers. While en route to a lake, a group of youngsters make an unscheduled stop-off at a remote, seemingly abandoned mansion where they plan to spend the night. But the property is full of foreboding signs – a blood-stained car wreck in the garden, coffins in the basement, scalps in the closet, and photographs of a beautiful but mysterious woman adorning every corner of the house. Before daybreak, the group will unwittingly uncover the strange and terrifying truth that lurks behind the walls of this dreadful place. The last in a trio of transcontinental slice-and-dice co-productions helmed by Larraz towards the end of the 80s (all of which he directed under the anglicized moniker of Joseph Braunstein), “Deadly Manor” – released on VHS in the US under the title “Savage Lust” – is a fitting capper to the director’s prolific career in fear, now finally unearthed for the first time on Blu-ray. New 2K restoration from original film elements. From Arrow Video/MVD Entertainment … After a meteorite lands in the front yard of their farm, Nathan Gardner (Cage) and his family find themselves battling a mutant extraterrestrial organism as it infects their minds and bodies, transforming their quiet rural life into a technicolor nightmare in “Color Out of Space” (2019), starring Nicolas Cage, Joely Richardson, Madeleine Arthur, Brendan Meyer, Julian Hilliard, Elliot Knight and Q’orianka Kilch. Based on the H.P. Lovecraft short story. On DVD, Blu-ray, from RLJE Films … Before he became NYC’s favorite 80s action auteur with hits like “The Exterminator,” “The Protector,” and “Shakedown,” as well as executive producer of grindhouse classics that included “Maniac Cop,” “Frankenhooker” and “Basket Case 2 & 3”, writer-director James Glickenhaus made his feature debut with “The Astrologer” (1977), a bizarre tale of government skullduggery, satanic killings, zodiacal mayhem, and messianic horror. Playboy centerfold Monica Tidwell stars in the ultra-obscure thriller. Also known as “Suicide Cult” and a one-time U.K. Section 3 “Video Nasty,” the film is based on the novel by John Cameron. In a 4k scan from the director’s personal answer print. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Severin Films … photo for Hudson River Massacre “Hudson River Massacre” (1965 — Italy) is set in Canada in the 19th century. The Hudson Bay Company, with James Sullivan (Santiago Rivero) at the helm and supported by the British Mounted Police, impose unacceptable conditions on native trappers. A group led by Leo Limoux (Franco Fantasia), rebel in retaliation. Victor DeFrois (George Martin), a trapper who, until the execution of his brother by the British soldiers had remained neutral, kidnaps Ann Sullivan (Giulia Rubini), daughter of the ruthless owner of the Hudson Bay Company, to use as a bartering tool while the rebels seek to disrupt and gain control of the company’s business. What Victor didn’t count on was falling in love with his hostage, in this classic spaghetti western written and directed by Amando de Ossorio (“Tombs of the Blind Dead”). From MVD Classics … Sometimes dead is better. But the shocking terror that plagued Ludlow, Maine, in “Pet Sematary” is still very much alive in “Pet Sematary Two Collector’s Edition” (1992), starring Edward Furlong, Anthony Edwards, Clancy Brown, Jared Rushton, the sequel to the 1989 hit film. After the death of his wife, veterinarian Chase Matthews and his 13-year-old son, Jeff, move to Ludlow to rebuild their lives. Antagonized by the neighborhood kids, Jeff befriends another outsider, Drew Gilbert, who lives in fear of his cruel stepfather, Gus. After Gus cold-bloodedly shoots Drew’s beloved dog, the boys bury the body in the local Indian burial grounds – a place rumored to have the powers of resurrection. But when evil is awakened, the boys realize that sometimes you should just let dead dogs lie. New 4K scan of the original camera negative approved by director Mary Lambert. On Blu-ray. Extras: New audio commentary with director from Scream Factory.

Foreign Films:

“The Climbers” (2019 — China), starring Wu Jing, Zhang Ziyi and Jackie Chan, is a cinematic retelling of the first Chinese climbers to summit Mount Everest – the first ever to do so from the North Ridge. Well-known as the most challenging side of the mountain, the perilous journey takes its toll on the mountaineers, physically and mentally, forcing them to make life or death decisions at every turn. On Blu-ray from Well Go USA.

For the Family:

In “Norm of the North: Family Vacation” (2020), with the voices of Lisa Durupt, Jonathan Holmes, Brian Drummond, Lee Tockar, Paul Dobson, Cole Howard, Andrew Toth and Jennifer Cameron, Overwhelmed by his Kingly duties, Norm struggles to make time for both his kingdom and his family. But when his crown is mysteriously stolen in the dead of the night. Norm must embark on an epic journey — disguised as a family vacation. Norm sets out to track down the thief and find his crown — and learns the valuable lesson that by working together as a family, nothing is impossible. From Lionsgate.

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 February 24, 2020 No Responses »
Feb 242020

Writer/director Alec Tibaldi’s feature film debut the powerful coming of age drama “Spiral Farm,”  starring Piper De Palma (daughter of iconic film director Brian De Palma) in her captivating breakout feature film debut as the luminescent central character Anahita. Indican Pictures is releasing “Spiral Farm” theatrically in multiple markets including Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago, among others.

“Spiral Farm”  stars Piper De Palma (Anahita), as a 17 year old teenage girl growing up on a commune where her life is very much dedicated to the care of others. She finds her very organized existence disrupted by the arrival of two outsiders, which causes her world of obligation and community to be cracked wide open. With these strangers comes the opportunity for a new exotic future all her own—if she’s willing to step forward, abandoning all that she’s ever known and take it. How brave or is it reckless, are we willing to be to get what we think that we want? De Palma stars alongside enigmatic screen veterans Amanda Plummer (Ryan Murphy’s upcoming “Ratched,” “Pulp Fiction,” “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire”), and Jade Fusco (“Youth in Revolt,” “ Wonder Valley”), joined by Sara Anne (“Public Disturbance, “Open Season”), and Landen Beattie (“Jane the Virgin,” “The Box”) as the only family she’s ever known.  Our charismatic outsiders bringing with them the promise of a more exciting present and future, are Cosimo Fusco (“Angels & Demons,” “Gone in Sixty Seconds”), and Teo Halm (“Earth to Echo,” “Memoria,”and Music Producer of Beyonce’s Lion King and Donald Glover’s Guava Island).  

Many thanks for your coverage consideration as always!  Your support of independent film is invaluable in the discovery of gifted new filmmakers and truly greatly appreciated.

The film is a haunting look at families in the modern age where utopia is not always what it seems, but it challenges audiences perceptions of what communes are, who the people that make them up consist of and why we should not be so quick to judge those that live differently than ourselves.


Spiral Farm #03222K4D 8-25284-20322-6 $24.99 2/25/20

 Posted by on February 24, 2020 No Responses »
Feb 242020
A home invasion thriller with unexpected horror twists and turns, Hunter’s Moon arrives on DVD, Digital, and On Demand March 24 from Lionsgate. From director Michael Caissie and an executive producer of Live Free or Die Hard, 16 Blocks, and Hostage and starring Thomas Jane, Jay Mohr, and Sean Patrick Flanery, the Hunter’s Moon DVD will be available for the suggested retail price of $19.98.

Thomas Jane (The Mist) and Jay Mohr (Suicide Kings) star in this chilling home invasion horror thriller.  When their parents leave town, three teenage girls decide to throw a party in their new country home.  But when a gang of dangerous local boys with sinister intentions turn up, the women are forced to not only defend themselves from the evil inside of the house, but an unseen bloodthirsty predator that is hunting them one by one outside of the house.
 Posted by on February 24, 2020 No Responses »
Feb 242020

One of the biggest successes in the history of animation and Chinese cinema, the internationally-acclaimed animated fantasy-adventure NE ZHA weaves it magic on digital February 25 and on DVD, Blu-ray Combo and 4K Ultra Blu-ray Combo March 3 from Well Go USA Entertainment. First-time feature film director Jiaozi brings to the screen the enchanting story of a boy with unique powers who is recruited to fight demons and save the community that initially fears him. NE ZHA is the first animated film selected as the Chinese entry for Best International Feature Film at the 92nd Academy Awards.


A young boy, Nezha, is birthed from a heavenly pearl by the Primeval Lord of Heaven. Born with unique powers, Nezha finds himself as an outcast who is hated and feared. Destined by prophecy to bring destruction to the world, the young boy must choose between good and evil in order to break the shackles of fate and become the hero.

Country of Origin: China

NE ZHA has a runtime of approximately 111 minutes and is not rated.

DVD Blu-ray Combo (2k) 4K Ultra Blu-ray Combo
Catalog #: WGU03154D Catalog #: WGU03157B Catalog #: WGU03158B
UPC Code: 810348031549 UPC Code: 810348031570 UPC Code: 810348031587
Pre-Order Date: 1/28/20 Pre-Order Date: 1/28/20 Pre-Order Date: 1/28/20
SLP: $24.98 SLP: $29.98 SLP: $34.98
Language: 1. English             2. Mandarin

Subtitles:  English & Chinese

Language: 1. English             2. Mandarin

Subtitles:  English & Chinese

Language: 1. English             2. Mandarin

Subtitles:  English & Chinese

Audio: 5.1 Dolby Digital / 2.0 Stereo Audio: Dolby Atmos / 5.1 Dolby Digital /  Stereo Audio: Dolby Atmos  /  Stereo  (4K HDR)

Audio: Dolby Atmos/ Stereo (2K)



 Posted by on February 24, 2020 No Responses »
Feb 242020

Street Date: 3/10/20

Blu-ray™ + DVD + Digital SRP: $22.99

DVD SRP: $19.98

Some debts can’t be paid when Inherit the Viper arrives on Blu-ray™ (plus DVD & Digital) and DVD March 10 from Lionsgate. This film is currently available on Digital and On  Demand. Inherit the Viper stars Josh Hartnett, Margarita Levieva, Owen Teague, Valorie Curry, Chandler Riggs, Brad William Henke, Tara Buck), with Dash Mihok, and Academy Award® nominee Bruce Dern. A tense crime thriller with powerful performances, Inherit the Viper will be available on Blu-ray and DVD for the suggested retail price of $22.99 and $19.98, respectively.

For siblings Kip (Josh Hartnett) and Josie (Margarita Levieva), dealing opioids isn’t just their family business—it’s their only means of survival. When a deal goes fatally wrong, Kip decides he wants out. But Kip’s attempt to escape his family’s legacy ignites a powder keg of violence and betrayal, imperiling Kip, Josie, and their younger brother, Boots (Owen Teague), in this searing crime-thriller that builds to a shattering conclusion.

Josh Hartnett              TV’s “Penny Dreadful,” The Long Home
Margarita Levieva       TV’s “The Deuce,” The Lincoln Lawyer
Owen Teague             TV’s “Bloodline,” It Chapter Two
Valorie Curry               American Pastoral, Blair Witch
Chandler Riggs           TV’s “The Walking Dead,” “A Million Little Things”
Brad William Henke    TV’s “Orange Is the New Black,” Bright
Tara Buck                   TV’s “Ray Donovan,” “True Blood”
with Dash Mihok         TV’s  “Ray Donovan,” Silver Linings Playbook
and Bruce Dern          The Hateful Eight, Nebraska

Year of Production: 2019
Title Copyright: © 2019 Viper Productions 2 LLC. Artwork & Supplementary Materials © 2020 Lions Gate Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Type: Theatrical Release
Rating: R for drug content, violence and pervasive language.
Genre: Crime Thriller
Closed-Captioned: No
Subtitles: Spanish, English SDH
Feature Run Time: 84 minutes
Blu-ray Format: 1080p High Definition, 16×9 2.39:1 Presentation
DVD Format: 16×9 2.39:1 Presentation
Blu-ray Audio: English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio™
DVD Audio: English 5.1 Dolby Digital Audio

 Posted by on February 24, 2020 No Responses »
Feb 242020

1917, the critically acclaimed, multi-award winning action spectacle including Academy Award® winner for Best Cinematography arrives on Digital March 10, 2020 and on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-rayTM and DVD March 24, 2020 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.  Hailed as “One of the most extraordinary cinematic achievements of the year” (JoBlo), the universally acclaimed film combines groundbreaking film making, memorable performances, and an unforgettable insight into the human experience against the shattering background of war. Additionally an Oscar® winner for Best Visual Effects and Best Sound Mixing, 1917 is “a new war movie classic” (NY Post).

In 1917 at the height of the First World War, two young British soldiers, Schofield (MacKay) and Blake (Chapman) are given a seemingly impossible mission. In a race against time, they must cross enemy territory and deliver a message that will stop a deadly attack on hundreds of soldiers—Blake’s own brother among them. 1917 comes to Digital, 4K Ultra HD, Blu-rayTM and DVD with bonus content showcasing the incredible craft and artistry behind the immersive feature, including a detailed look into the production design, how the film engineered a one shot, 360-degree format and interviews with the cast and crew.

In 1917, Academy Award®-winning director Sam Mendes (American Beauty, Spectre, Skyfall) brings his Golden Globe® and BAFTA award-winning directorial performance to a script co-written alongside Krysty Wilson-Cairns (“Penny Dreadful”). The film stars breakout actors George Mackay (Captain Fantastic, Pride, Sunshine on Leith) and Dean-Charles Chapman (HBO’s “Game of Thrones”). Accompanying Mackay and Chapman are standout performances by Mark Strong (Tinker Tailor, Kingsman, The Imitation Game), Andrew Scott (“Fleabag”, Sherlock, Spectre), Richard Madden (Netflix’s “The Bodyguard”, Rocketman, HBO’s “Game of Thrones”), Colin Firth (The King’s Speech, Kingsman, Bridget Jones) and Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock, Dr. Strange, The Imitation Game). The film was produced by Mendes, Pippa Harris (“Penny Dreadful”, “Call the Midwife”), Jayne-Ann Tenggren (Spectre, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close), Callum McDougall (Spectre, Skyfall, Casino Royale) and Brian Oliver (Rocketman, Black Swan).


  • The Weight of the World: Sam Mendes – Academy Award® winner Sam Mendes discusses his personal connection to World War 1.
  • Allied Forces: Making 1917 – Learn how the one shot, 360-degree format was executed and the pivotal role Academy Award® winner Roger Deakins served in bringing Sam Mendes’ vision to life.
  • The Music of 1917 – Composer Thomas Newman and filmmakers discuss the important role of the Academy Award®-nominated score.
  • In The Trenches – Go behind the scenes with the cast of 1917.
  • Recreating History – Filmmakers offer a detailed look at the production design challenges of recreating the First World War.
  • Feature Commentary with Director/Co-Writer Sam Mendes.
  • Feature Commentary with Director of Photography Roger Deakins.
Press Kit
1917 will be available on 4K Ultra HD combo pack, which includes 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, & Digital Code.

Website: https://uni.pictures/1917
Trailer: http://uni.pictures/1917Trailer
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/1917Film
Twitter: https://twitter.com/1917
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/1917
Directed By: Sam Mendes
Cast: George MacKay, Dean- Charles Chapman, Mark Strong, Andrew Scott, Richard Madden, with Colin Firth and Benedict Cumberbatch
Music By: Thomas Newman
Costume Designer: Jacqueline Durran, David Crossman
Editor: Lee Smith, ACE
Production Designer: Dennis Gassner
Director of Photography: Roger Deakins, ASC ESC
Produced By: Sam Mendes, Pippa Harris, Jayne-Ann Tenggren, Callum McDougall, Brian Oliver
Written By: Sam Mendes, Krysty Wilson-Cairns


Street Date: March 24, 2020
Selection Number: 61209848 (US) / 61210170 (CDN)
Layers:  BD-100
Aspect Ratio: Widescreen 16:9 2.39:1
Rating: R for violence, some disturbing images, and language.
Subtitles: English, French Canadian, Latin American Spanish
Video: 2160p UHD Dolby Vision/HDR10+/HDR 10
Languages/Sound: English (Dolby Atmos), French Canadian (Dolby Digital Plus 7.1), Latin American Spanish (Dolby Digital Plus 7.1)
Run Time: 1:59:00


Street Date: March 24, 2020
Selection Number: 61209847 (US) / 61210172 (CDN)
Layers:  BD-50
Aspect Ratio: Widescreen 16:9 2.39:1
Rating: R for violence, some disturbing images, and language.
Subtitles: English, French Canadian, Latin American Spanish
Languages/Sound: English (Dolby Atmos), French Canadian (Dolby Digital Plus 7.1), Latin American Spanish (Dolby Digital Plus 7.1)
Run Time: 1:59:00

Street Date: March 24, 2020
Selection Number: 61209846 (US) / 61210171 (CDN)
Layers: DVD 9
Aspect Ratio: Anamorphic Widescreen 16:9 2.39:1
Rating: R for violence, some disturbing images, and language.
Subtitles: English, French Canadian, Latin American Spanish
Languages/Sound: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French Canadian (Dolby Digital 5.1), Latin American Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
Run Time: 1:59:00


 Posted by on February 24, 2020 No Responses »
Feb 192020

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Lucasfilm and director J.J. Abrams’ riveting, inspiring conclusion of the seminal Skywalker saga, electrified audiences around the globe, earning more than a billion dollars worldwide. Soon fans can complete their collections when Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker arrives digitally in HD and 4K Ultra HD™ and via Movies Anywhere on March 17, two weeks before it lands physically in 4K Ultra HD™, Blu-ray™ and DVD on March 31.

Bonus material includes a feature-length, making-of documentary, which goes behind the scenes with the cast and filmmakers from Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and explores the legacy of the Skywalker saga. Bonus features also dig into the film’s Pasaana desert scenes, including the thrilling landspeeder chase, and the ship in which Rey discovers family secrets as well as a new little droid named D-O. Plus, fans will hear from Warwick Davis, who reprises his role as Wicket the Ewok, as well as the creature effects team that created a record 584 creatures and droids for the film. Digital consumers will receive an exclusive feature highlighting legendary composer John Williams, who has scored every episode in the Skywalker saga.

Bonus features include*:

  • The Skywalker Legacy – The story lives forever in this feature-length documentary that charts the making of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
  • Pasaana Pursuit: Creating the Speeder Chase – Dive into the making of the movie’s epic landspeeder chase and discover how this spectacular sequence was brought to the screen.
  • Aliens in the Desert – See what it took to create the Pasaana desert scenes, from the sheer scale and complexity of the shoot to its colorful details.
  • D-O: Key to the Past – Explore the ship that connects Rey to the mystery of her missing parents and get to know the galaxy’s newest, irresistible droid.
  • Warwick & Son – Warwick Davis, who played Wicket in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, dons the Ewok costume once more; this time joined by his son Harrison.
  • Cast of Creatures – The team behind the film’s memorable creatures reveal the puppetry, makeup, prosthetics and digital magic that bring them to life!

Digital Exclusive:

  • The Maestro’s Finale – Composer John Williams reflects on his body of work for the Star Wars saga and shares insights on scoring Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

* Digital bonus offerings may vary by retailer.

The ninth and final episode in the Skywalker saga welcomed the return of original characters Luke Skywalker, General Leia Organa, Chewbacca, C-3PO, R2-D2, Emperor Palpatine and Lando Calrissian, along with the latest generation of heroes and villains, including Rey, Finn, Poe, BB-8, Maz, Rose, General Hux and Kylo Ren. Newcomers include Jannah, a new ally of the Resistance; Allegiant General Pryde of the First Order; and smuggler Zorii Bliss.

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is packaged several ways to ensure fans get the most out of their at-home viewing experience. The Multiscreen Edition includes Blu-ray and a Digital copy, giving viewers the flexibility to watch the film on different devices. Those with 4K Ultra HD capability may opt for a 4K UHD Ultimate Collector’s Edition, including 4K UHD, Blu-ray and a Digital copy. 4K Ultra HD provides four times the resolution of HD paired with fully immersive picture and sound and Dolby Atmos audio, allowing viewers at home to practically feel the Force.

On March 31, coinciding with the physical release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, eight Star Wars films are being released on 4K UHD for the first time: Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Star Wars: A New Hope, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

FEATURE RUN TIME: Approximately 142 min.
RATING: PG-13 in U.S.; PG in CE; G in CF
4K UHD Blu-ray = English Dolby Atmos, English 2.0 Descriptive Audio, French and Spanish 7.1 Dolby Digital Plus
Blu-ray = English 7.1 DTS-HDMA, English 2.0 Descriptive Audio, French and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital
DVD = English, French and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital, English 2.0 Descriptive Audio
UHD Digital = English Dolby Atmos (some platforms), English 5.1 & 2.0 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 & 2.0 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 & 2.0 Dolby Digital, English Descriptive Audio 2.0 Dolby Digital (some platforms)
HD Digital = English 5.1 & 2.0 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 & 2.0 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 & 2.0 Dolby Digital, English Descriptive Audio 2.0 Dolby Digital (some platforms)
SD Digital = English 5.1 & 2.0 Dolby Digital, Spanish 5.1 & 2.0 Dolby Digital, French 5.1 & 2.0 Dolby Digital, English Descriptive Audio 2.0 Dolby Digital (some platforms)
4K UHD Blu-ray = English SDH, Danish, Finnish, Norwegian, Spanish, Swedish and French
Blu-ray = English SDH, Spanish and French
DVD = English SDH, Spanish and French
Digital = English SDH, French, Spanish (some platforms)

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker stars Carrie Fisher (Leia Organa), Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), Adam Driver (Kylo Ren), Daisy Ridley (Rey), John Boyega (Finn), Oscar Isaac (Poe Dameron), Anthony Daniels (C-3PO), Naomi Ackie (Jannah), Domhnall Gleeson (General Hux), Richard E. Grant (General Pryde), Lupita Nyong’o (Maz Kanata), Keri Russell (Zorii Bliss), Joonas Suotamo (Chewbacca), Kelly Marie Tran (Rose Tico), with Ian McDiarmid (Emperor Palpatine) and Billy Dee Williams (Lando Calrissian).

The film is directed by J.J. Abrams and produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Abrams and Michelle Rejwan. Callum Greene, Tommy Gormley and Jason McGatlin serve as executive producers. The screenplay was written by Chris Terrio & J.J. Abrams and the story is by Derek Connolly & Colin Trevorrow and J.J. Abrams & Chris Terrio, based on characters created by George Lucas. Composer John Williams, who has scored every episode in the Skywalker saga since 1977’s Star Wars: A New Hope, returns for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

 Posted by on February 19, 2020 No Responses »
Feb 182020

From the Big Screen:

“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood,” “JoJo Rabbit,” “Midway” and “21 Bridges.” For more information on other releases this week, see the Weekly Guide to Home Video Releases.

This Week’s Best Bets

“Accident” (1967): From Joseph Losey, the legendary director of “The Prowler”, “The Servant,” “Modesty Blaise,” “The Go-Between” and “The Assassination of Trotsky,” comes this classic melodrama with a screenplay by the great Harold Pinter. When one of his students is killed in a car accident, an Oxford professor (Dirk Bogarde) recounts the circumstances of their meeting. But as these turbulent memories unfold, they reveal a series of shocking relationships betrayed by adultery, obsession and self-destruction in which nothing is what it seems and everything has its cost. “Accident” was the second of three brilliant collaborations between filmmaker Losey and playwright Pinter; the first was the 1963 masterpiece “The Servant” and the third, the 1971 classic “The Go-Between.” Stanley Baker, Michael York, Vivien Merchant and Delphine Seyrig co-star. On DVD, Blu-ray, from KL Studio Classics … photo for Teorema “Teorema” (1969 — Italy): One of the iconoclastic Pier Paolo Pasolini’s most radical provocations, “Teorema” finds the auteur moving beyond the poetic, proletarian earthiness that first won him renown and notoriety with a coolly cryptic exploration of bourgeois spiritual emptiness. Terence Stamp stars as the mysterious stranger — perhaps an angel, perhaps a devil — who, one by one, seduces the members of a wealthy Milanese family (including European cinema icons Silvana Mangano, Massimo Girotti, Laura Betti, and Anne Wiazemsky), precipitating an existential crisis in each of their lives. Unfolding nearly wordlessly in a procession of sacred and profane images, this tantalizing metaphysical riddle-blocked from exhibition by the Catholic Church for degeneracy-is at once a blistering Marxist treatise on sex, religion, and art and a primal scream into the void. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc with new, restored 4K digital transfer, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray from The Criterion Collection … “The Criminal (aka The Concrete Jungle)” (1960): A hard-boiled crime classic from Joseph Losey, the legendary director of “The Servant,” “Accident,” “Eva” and “Secret Ceremony and Figures in a Landscape.” Stanley Baker stars as underworld kingpin Johnny Bannion, sprung from prison by his best friend Mike Carter (Sam Wanamaker) to mastermind a daring racetrack heist. But when Johnny is betrayed and sent back to prison shortly after hiding the stolen loot, he must survive an ordeal of brutality at the hands of his fellow convicts and former accomplices. Co-starring Patrick Magee and Nigel Green and beautifully shot in striking black-and-white by the great Robert Krasker, the film is the grim and gritty film noir that was originally advertised as “The Toughest Picture Ever Made in Britain!” Brand New 4K Restoration.On DVD, Blu-ray, from KL Studio Classics … “Je T’Aime Moi Non Plus” (1976 — France): Cult icon Serge Gainsbourg wrote, directed, and scored this tale of doomed love between a lonely truck stop waitress (Jane Birkin) and a gay, hunky garbage truck driver (Joe Dallesandro), whose boyfriend (Hugues Quester) becomes increasingly jealous of the two. Sharing its title with Gainsbourg and Birkin’s sexually explicit 1969 hit pop song, the film is an equally provocative depiction of an unlikely couple’s torrid affair. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Kino Classics … photo for Antonio Gaudí “Antonio Gaudí” (1984 –Japan): Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí (1852-1926) designed some of the world’s most astonishing buildings, interiors, and parks; Japanese director Hiroshi Teshigahara constructed some of the most aesthetically audacious films ever made. In “Antonio Gaudí,” their artistry melds in a unique, enthralling cinematic experience. Less a documentary than a visual poem, Teshigahara’s film takes viewers on a tour of Gaudí’s truly spectacular architecture, including his massive, still-unfinished masterpiece, the Sagrada Família basilica in Barcelona. With camera work as bold and sensual as the curves of his subject’s organic structures, Teshigahara immortalizes Gaudí on film. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc with high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray, from The Criterion Collection … “The Alastair Sim Blu-Ray Collector’s Set”: Though he is perhaps best known for his role as Scrooge in the 1951 film adaptation of “A Christmas Carol,” Scottish character actor Alastair Sim is one of the best-loved and most prolific actors in classic British comedy. Often appearing in multiple roles, he starred in more than 50 films beginning in 1935 and was both critically acclaimed and unfailingly popular, regularly topping the cinema-goers popularity polls. This specially-curated set includes “Hue and Cry” (1947), “Laughter in Paradise” (1951), “The Belles of St. Trinian’s” (1954) and “School for Scoundrels” (1960). The very first Ealing comedy, “Hue and Cry,” directed by Charles Crichton, follows teenager Joe Kirby, who fantasizes that he’s on the track of criminals, only to discover that it has all come true! After discovering that his favorite comic is being used as a means of communication between a master criminal and his gang of thieves, Joe sets out to alert the writer, played by Sim, and turn the page on the crooks. In “Laughter in Paradise,” directed by Mario Zampi, famed practical joker Henry Russell leaves 50,000 pounds to each of his four surviving relatives. But his will has one last joke – they each have to undertake a task completely out of character within a month. As each sets out on their objective they find that quite apart from the promised riches, they are unexpectedly getting a lot out of the challenge. All except caddish Simon Russell, that is. “The Belles of St. Trinian’s,” directed by Frank Launder (scriptwriter for “The Lady Vanishes” and “Night Train to Munich”), features one of Sim’s most unforgettable performances. In an all-girls school, where the unruly students are more interested in men and mischief than homework and hockey, the arrival of Princess Fatima of Makyad and the return of recently expelled Arabella Fritton inspire even more chaos than usual. Featuring an all-star line-up, the cast includes Sim playing dual roles as both headmistress Miss Millicent Fritton and her twin brother (and Arabella’s father) Clarence Fritton. Finally, in “School For Scoundrels,” directed by Robert Hamer (“Kind Hearts and Coronets”), Henry Palfrey (Ian Carmichael) tries hard to impress but always loses out to the rotter Delauney. Then he discovers the Lifeman college run by “Professor” Potter (Sim) and discovers the secrets of success. But has he the courage to put all his lessons into effect in this comedy based on the Stephen Potter “One Upmanship” and “Lifemanship” books.” On Blu-ray from Film Movement.

Buzzin’ the ‘B’s:

In “Snatchers” (2018), starring Mary Nepi, Gabrielle Elyse, J.J Nolan, Austin Fryberger, Nick Gomez and Rich Fulcher, thanks to her relationship with clueless hunk Skyler, Sara is totally in with the cool girls. But Skyler contracted an extraterrestrial bug during his summer vacation. After just one night together, Sara discovers she’s nine months pregnant. Desperate to keep her condition on the DL, she turns to the only person she can trust: her nerdy ex-bestie, Hayley. The girls soon realize this alien problem is only just the beginning. Aliens had best beware in this comedy filled with action and tongue-in-cheek teen spirit. On DVD, Blu-ray/DVD Combo, from Warner … In “Clown Fear” (2020), starring Augie Duke, Randy Wayne and Darcy DeMoss, a runaway bride and her friends are stranded in a forgotten desert town full of sadistic, bloodthirsty clowns who don’t trust outsiders. It’s a carnival ride as the girls try to stay alive to escape Clown City. From Lionsgate … photo for Frankie “Frankie” (2019), starring Isabelle Huppert, Brendan Gleeson, Marisa Tomei, Je´re´mie Renier, Pascal Greggory, Vinette Robinson and Greg Kinnear, unfolds over the course of a late summer’s day in the fabled resort town of Sintra, Portugal, and follows three generations who have gathered for a vacation organized by the family matriarch. (Isabelle Huppert). In this fairy tale setting, husbands and wives, parents and children, friends and lovers, stirred by their romantic impulses, discover the cracks between them, as well as unexpected depth of feeling. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Sony … “Dangerous Cargo” (1977 — Greece), starring Deborah Shelton, Kostas Karagiorgis and Nikos Verleki, is a wild and rarely seen example of Greek exploitation cinema. Deborah Shelton — former Miss USA and star of TV’s “Dallas” – plays the wife of a ship’s captain whose vessel — a huge ship carrying an illegal cargo of dangerous nitro-glycerine — is taken over by pirates. After her husband is brutally killed she is alone with a crew of rough, tough seafarers. When a powerful cyclone threatens to sink the ship and kill all aboard, the former enemies must collaborate to save themselves. When the pirate leader takes an interest in her she has to use all her cunning and skills — not to mention her sexuality — to stay alive and take revenge for the murder of her husband. On Blu-ray from Mondo Macabro … photo for Warriors of the Nation In “Warriors of the Nation” (2018 — China), starring Wenzhuo Zhao, Vincent Zhao, Lubing Li, Miya Muqi and Kenya Sawada, at the end of the Sino-Japanese War, a top military officer, Zhang Zhidong, is kidnapped in the middle of the night by a militant organization called the White Lotus Society. When he overhears a sinister plot to overthrow the central government by China’s own military officials, Wong Fei Hung knows he must rescue Zhang to protect China and prevent another war from happening. Classic martial arts action. On Blu-ray from Well Go USA … In “Feedback” (2019), starring Eddie Marsan, Anthony Stewart Head, Paul Anderson and Ivana Baquero, Jarvis Dolan (Marsan) is the host of a successful late-night radio show, “The Grim Reality”. But his life takes a turn when two armed men burst into the studio one night and take him, and his entire show, hostage. Forcing Jarvis to read from a prefabricated scrip, they expose a scandal that could destroy his whole life and decimate his high-flying career. From Breaking Glass Pictures.

Foreign Films:

“We (Wij)” (2018 — Netherlands), starring Aimé Claeys, Tijmen Govaerts and Pauline Casteleyn, is a lurid, unflinching look at a group of youths and their summer of illicit fun. During one hot summer, eight privileged but bored suburban teens begin to pull a series of harmless pranks which quickly escalate into increasingly depraved games. Their descent from innocence to ruthless predators involve arson, prostitution, pornography, assault and blackmail. Drenched in bared flesh and naked nihilism the film is reminiscent of the films of Harmony Korine, Larry Clark and Lars von Trier. On DVD, Blu-ray, from Artsploitation Films) … An official Cannes selection and winner of festival prizes and awards worldwide, “Another Day of Life” (2018 — Spain | Poland | Belgium | Germany | France | Hungary) is a daringly ambitious dive into the chaos and carnage of war, based on the book by the journalist Ryszard “Ricardo” Kapuscinski, one of the world’s most compelling chroniclers of conflict. Intercutting a graphically bold animation style with interviews and archival footage, the visually striking film conveys a rare immediacy as it tells of the outbreak of civil war following Angola’s independence from Portugal in 1975. Against all advice, Kapuscinski is intent on driving south into the heart of the bloody conflict to find the isolated rebel leader Farrusco. His animated trip through corpse-strewn roads conveys an undeniable urgency, while the documentary testimony reminds us that we are watching actual history. On Blu-ray/DVD Combo, from GKIDS/Shout! Factory.

Special Interest:

“Scandalous: The Untold Story of The National Enquirer” (2019): Sex! Gossip! Scandal! For over 60 years, the National Enquirer has pumped out salacious, shocking stories, stretching the limits of journalism and blurring the lines between truth and fiction. This is the sensational true story of the most infamous tabloid in US history and a wild, probing look at how one newspaper’s prescient grasp of its’ readers darkest curiosities led it to massive profits and influence. From its coverage of Elvis’s death, to the O.J. Simpson murder trial, the National Enquirer rattled the foundations of American culture and politics, sometimes allegedly using payoffs and blackmail to get its scoops. With rare archival footage and revelations as wild as National Enquirer headlines themselves, this documentary examines our obsession with the rich, famous and powerful, and the tabloid that has fed those obsessions for generations of Americans. From Magnolia Home Entertainment.

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 February 18, 2020 No Responses »
Feb 172020

IN THEATERS: March 13, 2020

March 13, 2020
DIRECTOR: Philip Harder
WRITERS: Philip Harder (screenplay), and Glasgow Phillips (based on the novel by)

Devon Bostick, Natalia Dyer, Marchånt Davis, Tate Donovan, YG, Ella Rae Peck, and Birgundi Baker
SYNOPSIS: Alabama, 1972. As Billy falls for a patient at his father’s mental asylum, his best friend becomes involved in a radical civil rights movement against Tuscaloosa’s power elite.
GENRE: Drama

YOUTUBE TRAILER: https://youtu.be/004zrSsR260

 Posted by on February 17, 2020 No Responses »
Feb 172020


Gravitas Ventures, a Red Arrow Studios company, announced today the theatrical and VOD release date of Friday, March 20 for Amber McGinnis’ award-winning film INTERNATIONAL FALLS. The dark comedy will wrap up a successful year-long film festival run with appearances in a trio of film festivals around the country, and in France at the 42nd International Women’s Film Festival.

The feature film directorial debut by McGinnis, INTERNATIONAL FALLS features a lineup of notable comedian/actors and familiar faces including Rachel Harris (Lucifer, Suits), Rob Huebel (Children’s Hospital, Transparent), Kevin Nealon (Man with a Plan, Weeds), Mindy Sterling (The Goldbergs, the AUSTIN POWERS films), Erik Griffin (Workahlics, I’m Dying Up Here), and Matthew Glave (THE WEDDING SINGER, ARGO). The film was written by Thomas Ward, and produced by Nicholas Dunlevy and McGinnis.

Rob Huebel and Rachel Harris in INTERNATIONAL FALLS

INTERNATIONAL FALLS is a dark comedy about Dee (Rachael Harris), a woman stuck in a small, snowbound border town in northern Minnesota who harbors a secret dream of a career in stand-up. When she forms a friendship with Tim (Rob Huebel), a burned-out touring comedian, these two lost souls are forced to face the harsh but funny truths of their lives.

The film has been an official selection at 22 film festivals across the country, and has won multiple awards, including the Grand Jury Prize at 5 different festivals. The film festivals giving the film their highest honor, include the Ashland Independent Film Festival, the Naples International Film Festival, the New York No Limits Film Series, the Seattle International Film Festival, and the Tallgrass International Film Festival in Wichita.

“What audiences will most like about INTERNATIONAL FALLS is undoubtedly its human elements: the characters, the emotions, and the humor are all realistic and relatable, making for an easy to fall in love with feature,” said Brett Rogalsky, Acquisitions Coordinator at Gravitas Ventures.

INTERNATIONAL FALLS will continue its impressive film festival tour leading up to its release with appearances at; Dallas’ Best of Fests on February 29 which includes top films from 2019 festival programming in Dallas and North Texas film festivals’ programming form 2019; the Destiny City Film Festival in Takoma, Washington on March 14, and the Fargo Film Festival on March 21, the day after the film opens across the country and on VOD.

International Falls poster

Where to follow the film:
Website: https://www.internationalfallsmovie.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/InternationalFallsMovie/
Instagram: @outskirtmedia
Twitter: @AmberDirector

 Posted by on February 17, 2020 No Responses »