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


Mar 122014


A 50th Anniversary Blu-ray

THE AMERICANIZATION OF EMILY (1964) Arthurs Hiller's deft and delightful anti-war satire continues to charm the pants off audiences a half century after its original release. The American Film Institute selected this classic as one of the most important American films ever made thanks to director Hiller's stewardship, a wise and witty script by Paddy Chayefsky, crisp B&W camerawork from Philip Lothrop, magical music from Johnny Mandel and a sparkling cast headed by James Garner and Julie Andrews that includes Melvyn Douglas, James Coburn, Keenan Wynn and William Windom. And hats off to producer Martin Ransohoff! In the film, Garner plays Lt. Cmdr. Charles Edward Madison, the best dogbody the services have ever known. Whatever supplies and sumptuaries are desired by his commanding officer, Admiral Jessup (Douglas), Madison has the guile to get 'em. But when his irresistible charm comes up against the immovable beauty of British war widow Emily Barham and the sparks start to scorch, Charlie, a devote pacifist, is given a true suicide mission – filming the first serviceman that will die on the beaches of Normandy – and make sure to make sure it's a Navy man!

Classics International Style!

THE BIG HOUSE TRIPLE FEATURE (1930) Setting the standard for all prison pictures to come, The Big House's message resonates as strongly today as it did yesterday. And now you have a chance to sample that powerful message in three different flavors with this special international triple feature edition of The Big House. When a convict falls for his cellmates' sister, her stoolie brother threatens to spoil the peace by ratting on their third cellmate’s prison break plans. Joining the acclaimed English language version of the film, directed by George Hill and starring Chester Morgan, Wallace Beery and Robert Montgomery are the seldom seen since French and Spanish language versions, shot at the same time but with different director and different casts. Cinephiles will want to note, for example, the presence of a young Charles Boyer in the French version (under the direction of Paul Fejos), or perhaps ruminate on the very different dramatic approach of the Spanish version. With chapter stops synchronized across versions ardent cinema students are encouraged to go full Comp Lit on this cinema classic. Newly Remastered

TV Dramedies and WOW MoWs!

EIGHT IS ENOUGH: THE COMPLETE FIFTH SEASON (1980-1981) We bid adieu to Bradford clan and learn that eight is no longer enough in the show¹s fifth and final season. Tom (Dick van Patten) and Abby (Betty Buckley) have their hands full running their bursting household as they gear up for their fifth anniversary, as life keeps throwing the curveballs. First up, Susan (Susan Richardson) and Merle¹s (Brian Patrick Clarke) baby girl raises the stakes in And Baby Makes Nine, then a young Ralph Macchio takes it all the way to ten, joining the clan as Abby¹s nephew, Jeremy. David¹s (Grant Goodeve) and Janet¹s (Joan Prather) union goes asunder, Nancy¹s (Diane Kay) modeling career takes off, and Tommy (Willie Aames) gets serious about love ­ as in marriage! Meanwhile, Nicholas (Adam Rich) gets a horse, Joanie (Laurie Walters) goes undercover video-dating, and Elizabeth (Connie Needham) falls for a friend and one of Mary¹s (Lani O’Grady) patients falls for her. But when Jeremy¹s father suddenly returns, the clan¹s happiness is threatened.

THE DELPHI BUREAU: THE MERCHANT OF DEATH ASSIGNMENT (1972) Laurence Luckinbill stars in the TV pilot for the short lived lo-fi spy series The Delphi Bureau. Luckinbill plays Glenn Garth Gregory, a researcher for an amorphous government agency that does research for the President. Gifted with an eidetic memory, Garth has all the resources he needs to get to the bottom of some missing military surplus. It's a good thing he's got the goods since his Delphi Bureau contact, DC socialite Sybil Van Lowreen (Celeste Holm), doesn't give him anything to go on, not even an office!

THE GIRL IN THE EMPTY GRAVE (1977) Andy Griffith stars as Chief of Police Abel Marsh in this gripping made-for-TV murder mystery that combines the small town eccentricities of the Andy Griffith Show with more Matlock-ian plot machinations. One year after a young girl fatally drives her car off a mountain road, Abel and one of his deputies sees her driving around town. As Abel digs deep to decipher this spectral roadster riddle, he uncovers a deep and deadly secret. Also stars James Cromwell and Jonathan Banks.

THE ROSE AND THE JACKAL (1990) Christopher Reeve and Madolyn Smith Osborne star in this sweeping TV period romance that pits a dashing Union agent against an enchanting Confederate spy. Original Secret Service agent Allan Pinkerton (Reeve) is charged with stopping the flow of confidential information from the North to the South in the early days of The Civil War, and he tracks it to a beautiful southern belle (Osborne). As the two opponents circle each other, their hearts trap them in a web that their duties compel them to destroy. Reeve is rugged, dashing, bearded and brilliant.

DUEL OF HEARTS (1991) Barbara Cartland's Romance novel comes alive in this small screen adaptation that captures all the page-turning pleasure, adventure and romance of her bodice rippers. Alison Doody stars as Lady Caroline Faye, a fiery headstrong aristocrat who finds herself burning with desire for the dashing Lord Bracon (Benedict Taylor). But a terrible secret stand between them – a secret that Lady Faye is determined to uncover. Also stars Michael York and Geraldine Chaplin.

BEYOND BETRAYAL (1994) Susan Dey and Richard Dean Anderson star in this riveting made-for-TV suspense thriller. Dey plays Joanna, a woman on the run from her psychotic, abusive husband Bradley (Anderson in full on terrifying Terminator mode). After she meets an eccentric toy maker (Dennis Boutsikaris), she lets her guard down and the devil rushes in. And Joanna can't turn to the law for help – since her husband IS the law. Also stars James Tolkan.

 Posted by on March 12, 2014 No Responses »
Mar 112014

photo for Inside Llewyn Davis The Coen Brothers have a knack for taking a film genre (and time period) and making it their own, from Hollywood satire ("Barton Fink") to Depression-era social drama ("O Brother, Where Art Thou?") to crime thriller ("Blood Simple") to modern Western ("No Country for Old Men") to 1960s melodrama ("A Serious Man") and period Western ("True Grit") — imbuing their films with offbeat sensibilities (way offbeat with the great "The Big Lebowski"), wit, pathos and existential angst. With "Inside Llewyn Davis" they've taken on a most-sacred subject, the rise of the 1960s folk-music scene in 1961 New York City, and created a scenario that succinctly captures a moment in time with a melancholy look at a struggling musician who fights his demons to make his way in the world. The film follows a week in the life of young folk singer Llewyn Davis (Oscar Isaac) as he navigates the bleak streets of Lower Manhattan, the living-room couches of friends, and the empty coffee houses of Greenwich Village in an effort to make it as a musician. The settings are right on, the acting superb (with fine turns by Carey Mulligan, John Goodman, Garrett Hedlund, Justin Timberlake and F. Murray Abraham), and the music — well, so accurately folksy it'll make you reach for those old Dave Van Ronk (whose book, "The Mayor of MacDougal Street," was one of the sources for the film, while the title was a nod to Van Ronk's album "Inside Dave Van Ronk"), Dylan, Ian and Sylvia and Joan Baez albums. The times they were a-changin. Extras: "Inside Inside Llewyn Davis" making-of documentary, featuring Joel and Ethan Coen, Oscar Isaac, Elijah Wald, Stark Sands, T-Bone Burnett, Carey Mulligan, Justin Timberlake, Marcus Mumford, Chris Thile, John Goodman, F. Murray Abraham, Jess Gonchor, Mary Zophres and Bruno Delbonnel. Vitals: Director: Ethan Coen & Joel Coen. Stars: Oscar Isaac, Carey Mulligan, John Goodman, Garrett Hedlund, Justin Timberlake, F. Murray Abraham, Ethan Phillips, Adam Driver, Robin Bartlett, Max Casella. 2013, CC, MPAA rating: R, 105 min., Drama, Box office gross: $11.239 million, Sony. 3 stars

 Posted by on March 11, 2014 No Responses »
Mar 112014

photo for "The Book Thief," based on the international bestselling book by Markus Zusak, got a bum rap by most critics for 1) translating a young-adult novel to the big screen, 2) for bracketing the story with narration by Death, and, 3), for supposedly soft-peddling the horrors of World War II Germany. To be generous, the film adequately translates to the big screen the confused emotions of a spirited young girl who is sent to live with a foster family in a small German town where — with the help of the local bürgermeister's wife — she learns to love and appreciate books — and — with her new parents — she hides a Jewish refugee in the basement, where she learns about the sanctity of life and the importance of ideas. On the other hand, the film is a bit sappy and sentimental and shy of any momentous revelations. Still, it's the kind of film you might want to take your 13-year-old to see before they wander down the path to such young-adult junk as "Ender's Game." Great performances from Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson and Sophie Nelisse as Liesel (the book thief). Extras: Deleted scenes, theatrical trailer. Blu-ray adds "A Hidden Truth: Bringing the Book Thief to Life." Vitals: Director: Brian Percival. Stars: Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson, Sophie Nelisse, Ben Schnetzer, Nico Liersch, Kristen Block. 2013, CC, MPAA rating: PG-13, 131 min., Drama, Box office gross: $16.596 million, Fox. 3 stars

 Posted by on March 11, 2014 No Responses »
Mar 112014

photo for If you don't expect much from this good-guy-against-the-bad-guys action-thriller, then you won't be disappointed. It's old-fashioned American movie-making along the lines of "Bad Day at Black Rock" or "High Noon" in which a lone hero stands up against a bevy of criminals and crazies. Jason Statham plays an ex-DEA agent who breaks up a meth-peddling biker gang and then retires to a quiet Southern town with his 10-year-old daughter. Unfortunately, he discovers that the town is riddled with corruption, drugs and violence, and not only does he have to contend with a psychotic local drug lord (James Franco), he has to fend off the bikers when his witness-protection cover is blown. Statham plays his regular invincible hero while Franco creates a quirky villain (ala "Spring Breakers") and it's all pretty predictable as the face-off situations build up to the crescendo violence of the ending. Still, a fun outing. Directed by Gary Fleder ("Runaway Jury," "Impostor," "Kiss the Girls") with a screenplay by Sylvester Stallone. Extras: Deleted scenes, alternate ending, "Standoff" featurette. Vitals: Director: Gary Fleder. Stars: Jason Statham, James Franco, Winona Ryder, Kate Bosworth, Rachelle Lefevre, Frank Grillo. 2013, CC, MPAA rating: R, 100 min., Action, Box office gross: $18.438 million, Universal. 3 stars

 Posted by on March 11, 2014 No Responses »
Mar 102014

From the Big Screen:

"Inside Llewyn Davis," "The Book Thief," "Homefront" and "Out of the Furnace." For more information on these and other releases this week, see the Weekly Guide to Home Video Releases.

Blasts From the Past:

"Hollow Triumph" (1948), starring Paul Henreid, Joan Bennett, Thomas Brown Henry, Eduard Franz and John Qualen, is a film noir about a med school dropout-turned-master criminal who puts together a major casino heist that goes wrong. On the lam, he comes across a psychologist who looks like him, and he kills the doctor, assuming his identity — with ironic consequences. HD restoration from the original 35mm film elements. From Film Chest Media Group … CAV Distributing has a trio of Ozploitation outings due this week, headed up by the
photo for Ozploitation Trailer Explosion "Ozploitation Trailer Explosion" (2014): In the late 70s and early 80s, films like "My Brilliant Career" and "Breaker Morant" put Australia's New Wave on the map. But at the same time, a depraved generation of young Aussie filmmakers was putting a very different kind of movie on screens. This is the ultimate collection of Ozploitation trailers, packed with ockers, knockers, pubes, tubes, comatose killers, outback chillers, high-octane disasters and kung fu masters. On the Intervision label. "Dead Kids" (1981) is an Ozploitation classic — and one of the most unique shockers of the 80s. It's the grisly saga of bizarre experiments, butchered teens, New Zealand doubling for suburban Illinois, and a killer in a Tor Johnson mask. Features a hypnotic score by Tangerine Dream. Transferred in HD from the original negative. Stars Michael Murphy, Dan Shor, Fiona Lewis, Dey Young, Marc McClure, Scott Brady, Louise Fletcher. In a Blu-ray/DVD Combo on the Severin Films label. "Thirst" (1979) is another Ozploitation classic — and a unique vampire movie: David Hemmings and Henry Silva star as executives of an international blood-drinking cartel known as The Brotherhood. But when they abduct a descendant of Elizabeth Bathory to reboot her depraved legacy, she must escape before the corporation can expand their human blood cow dairies and create a vampire master race. Transferred in HD from the original negative. In a Blu-ray/DVD Combo on the Severin Films label.

From TV to DVD:

"Big History" (2013) is a fascinating miniseries that crosses billions of years of history to reveal how everything, and everyone, is linked in one universal story. The series turns history on its head, breaks down the walls between history and science, and tells the photo for Rogue: The Complete First Seasonstory of the universe from the Big Bang through today. Crisscrossing through time and space, each episode reveals the transformative relationships between science and history that you never knew existed. On DVD, 29.98; Blu-ray Disc, $39.99. From Lionsgate … "Rogue: The Complete First Season" (2013) is a three-disc set with 10 episodes of the DirecTV series in which Thandie Newton stars as Grace Travis, an undercover agent who's out of control, tormented by the possibility that her own actions contributed to her son's mysterious death. From Entertainment One … In "Siberia: Season One" (2013), 16 "contestants" are sent to the Tunguska region of Siberia unknowing of the land's mysterious past, to battle for a cash prize in this thrilling supernatural drama shot in the style of a survival reality show. Eleven episodes, $24.98. from Lionsgate.

Buzzin' the 'B's:

"Iron Sky: Director's Cut" (2012), starring Christopher Kirby, Udo Kier, Stephanie Pau, Gotz Otto and Julia Dietze, features more action, more effects and more politically incorrect humor than ever before. In the last moments of World War II, a secret Nazi space program evaded destruction by fleeing to the dark side of the moon. During the following 70 years of utter secrecy, the Nazis constructed a gigantic space fortress with a massive armada of flying saucers. Their photo for Beyond Outrage plan: travel back to Earth and re-colonize the planet. Sci-fi comedy in a Blu- ray/DVD Combo from Entertainment One … In "Beyond Outrage" (2012 — Japan), starring Takeshi Kitano, Toshiyuki Nishida, Tomokazu Miura and Ryo Kase, Takeshi Kitano returns to his yakuza saga, "Outrage" with this sequel. This time a manipulative police crackdown on organized crime has ignited a tricky power struggle in the yakuza underworld. As the police force prepares a full-scale crackdown, anti-gang detective Kataoka wants to start a war between the Sanno crime family and the neighboring Hanabishi crime family in the hopes that they destroy each other. His trump card is Otomo (Kitano) — the rumored-dead boss of a defunct family that was destroyed by the Sanno. Otomo wants to retire from a life of crime, but finds himself drawn back in through Kataoka's manipulations as the Sanno and Hanabishi clans teeter on the brink of an all-out war. Not as exciting and creative as the original as the film kind of slumps down into a more-of-the-same mode. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc from Magnolia Home Entertainment … In "Commitment" (2013 — South Korea), starring Choi Seung-hyun (aka Korean pop star T.O.P), Han Ye-ri and Kim Yoo-jeong. North Korean Myung-hoon and his young sister Hye-in are sent to a labor photo for prison camp after their father's botched espionage mission. In order to save his sister's life, Myung-hoon volunteers to become a spy and infiltrates the South as a teenage defector. South Korean Intelligence soon discovers the plot and begins closing in on Myung-hoon, while his own government sends a vicious assassin to eliminate him. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc from Well Go USA … "End of the World" (2013) is a Syfy Original Movie disaster comedy about a group of goofy science fiction geeks who hold the fate of the world in their hands. Massive earthquakes violently shake cities and mysterious plasma spheres pummel the Earth's surface. Two small-town sci-fi fan boys, who work at a video store, dig deep into their vast knowledge of disaster films to find a plan that could rescue humanity from complete and total obliteration. Stars Neil Grayston, Greg Grunberg, Brad Dourif. From Anchor Bay.

"In Fear" (2013), starring Iain De Caestecker, Alice Englert and Allen Leech, is a psychological horror tale about a young couple's fight to make it through the night is a variation on the home invasion theme — but in a car. In real-time. Tom and Lucy are trapped in a maze of country roads with only their vehicle for protection, terrorized by an unseen tormentor hell-bent on exploiting their worst fears. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc from Anchor Bay … In "Puncture photo for Puncture Wounds Wounds" (2014), starring Dolph Lundgren, Cung Le, Vinnie Jones and Briana Evigan, John (Le), a soldier returning home from a traumatic tour of duty in Iraq, finds himself struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder; what little peace he has managed to build around him is shattered one fateful day when he rescues a local call girl from a group of violent Aryan Brotherhood pimps. Now John and his family become the prime targets of Hollis (Lundgren), the ruthless criminal leader of the group. From Lionsgate … In "Armistice (aka Warhouse)" (2013), starring Joseph Morgan, Matt Ryan and William Troughton, a Royal Marine awakens to find himself imprisoned in the warhouse and forced to fight to the death against grotesque, inhuman opponents — again and again. From XLrator Media … When Nick Di Santo, a young man who can who foresee how one will perish by simply touching them, learns that his father is not only alive but can possibly reveal the origin of photo for Enemies Closerhis dark gift, he sets out on a trip that takes him to an abandoned mansion he thought only existed in his childhood imagination in "Dark House" (2014), starring Tobin Bell, Luke Kleintank, Lesley-Anne Down and Anthony Ray Perez. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc from Cinedigm … Deep within a forest on the U.S.-Canadian border, two sworn enemies must work together to escape a ruthless drug cartel hell-bent on retrieving a drug shipment that went missing there in "Enemies Closer" (2013), directed by Peter Hyams and starring Jean-Claude Van Damme, Tom Everett Scott and Orlando Jones. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc from Lionsgate … When a young man, whose father was killed in a chemical plant accident, is lured by his friends as a prank to the now deserted building, he snaps, picks up an ax and goes on a rage-filled, killing spree in "Hazmat" (2013), starring Norbert Velez, Todd Bruno, Aniela McGuinness and Giordan Diaz. From Uncork'd Entertainment.

"In the Name of the King 3: The Last Mission" (2014), starring Dominic Purcell, Ralitsa Paskaleva, Bashar Rahal and Nikolai Sotirov, is the latest installment in the video game-inspired fantasy action adventure series. Here Hazen Kaine (Purcell), an American hitman, skeptically enters into what he hopes is his final contract with corrupt European crime lords but instead finds himself in an all-out fight for survival that takes him spiraling back to medieval times, where he must evade a vile medieval army and reclaim a stolen kingdom. On DVD, Blu-ray Disc from Fox … In photo for The Outsider "Junk" (2012)m starring Kevin Hamedani, Ramon Isao, James Hong, Lynn Shelton, Jake Johnson and Brett Davern, two B-movie co-writers who have suffered a bitter falling out reunite when one of their films ("Islama-rama 2") is accepted by a film festival and they have to pitch their script to a mysterious producer. Along the way, they brave brutish bodyguards, cutthroat colleagues, inept agents, romantic entanglements, prima donna actors, and the trials of their own bitter friendship. From Breaking Glass Pictures … In "The Outsider" (2014), starring Jason Patric, James Caan, Craig Fairbrass and Shannon Elizabeth, British mercenary Lex Walker, recalled from the battlefields of Afghanistan to identify the remains of his daughter, arrives in Los Angeles to find that the body in the morgue belongs to a stranger. With his daughter now missing, he convinces a street-wise detective that she's still alive and in danger and the two follow a trail of high-tech intrigue strewn with an army of thugs and hired killers.On DVD, Blu-ray Disc from Image Entertainment … In "101st: A-Company (aka Devils photo for The Time Being of War)" (2013), starring Apple Lee, Carly Kingston, Jamin Watson, Jeremiah Grace, Jerry L. Buxbaum and Lawrence Anthony, a daring team of special forces soldiers is assembled for a top-secret mission in 1944 Poland to bring down a group of occultist Nazis who are building an army of demon-possessed, super soldiers. From Inception Media Group … In "The Time Being" (2012), starring Sarah Paulson, Wes Bentley, Frank Langella, Corey Stoll, Ahna O'Reilly, Jeremy Allen White and Gina Gallego, a struggling young artist whose ambitions have pushed his marriage to the brink is delighted when a reclusive millionaire purchases one of his pieces, and he hopes for additional commissions from the new benefactor. Instead, he's offered a series of increasingly bizarre surveillance assignments and, as he begins to unravel the secrets behind the requests, he must determine if the man is out to further his career or ruin his life. From Tribeca Film/Cinedigm.

For the Family:

"Digimon Data Squad Season 5" (2014) is an eight-disc set with all 48 episodes, $79.95. The members of D.A.T.S. (Digital Accident Tactics Squad), an organization created to conceal the existence of the Digital World and Digimon from the rest of mankind, face a massive conflict between Earth and the Digital World triggered by an ambitious human scientist determined to make use of the Digimon for his own personal gain. From New Video Group/Cinedigm … "Noah's Ark" (2007 — Argentina) is Juan Pablo Buscarini's animated version of the familiar tale of photo for Digimon Data Squad Season 5 Noah, his family and the animals who traveled in the ark to survive an epic flood meant to destroy the rest of civilization. The movie takes a lighter approach to the traditional material as the story is mainly told from animals' perspective, and both animals and humans can speak. From Shout! Factory … "The Flintstone Kids: Rockin' In Bedrock" (1986-88) is a two-disc set with 10 cartoons from the 1980s series, $19.97. from Warner … "Transformers Armada: The Complete Series" (2002) is an eight-disc set with 52 episodes of the series that has Optimus Prime, his team of Autobots and their human friends stepping up the fight against Megatron and his Decepticons for control of the universe and the power-enhancing Mini-Cons, a lost race of Transformers. $44.99 from Shout! Factory … In "Bubble Guppies: Animals Everywhere!" (2014), Molly, Gil, Bubble Puppy and the class make new animal friends in six field trips where they meet dogs, ducks, squirrels, rhinos, elephants and a class photo for Against the Wild of really "cool" Arctic animals, $16.99 from Nickelodeon/Paramount … In "Against the Wild" (2014), starring CJ Adams, Erin Pitt and Natasha Henstridge, two siblings and their devoted dog become lost in the wilderness and must learn how to combine their skills, trust their instincts and navigate a terrain as beautiful as it is untamed — fighting grizzly bears and forest fires — to find help. Features a soaring musical score performed by a live 65-piece orchestra in Prague. Approved for all ages by the Dove Foundation. From Anchor Bay … "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutagen Mayhem" (2013) consists of the first six episodes from season two of Nickelodeon's CGI-animated series, $14.99 from Nickelodeon/Paramount … A 13-year-old nerd's science experiments turns his canine pal Abner into an invisible, talking sheepdog in "Abner the Invisible Dog" (2013), starring Daniel Zykov, Molly Morgen Lamont, David DeLuise, David Chokachi and Jane Kean. From Inception Media Group … "Angelina Ballerina: Spring Fling" (2014) features five episodes, $14.98 from Lionsgate.

Special Interest:

The Reelz Channel documentary "JFK: The Smoking Gun" (2013) breaks new ground in the case of President John F. Kennedy's murder by presenting evidence amassed by two highly qualified experts during multi-year investigations into Kennedy's assassination. This program presents a cold case forensic analysis of Kennedy's assassination, revealing what really happened that day: photo for JFK: The Smoking Gun That there was a second shooter who fired accidentally and who was really responsible for JFK s death — and subsequently one of the greatest cover-ups in American history. Formats: DVD. From Docurama/Cinedigm … Produced by Major League Baseball Productions, "100 Years of Wrigley Field" (2013) is a feature-length film that chronicles the history of Wrigley Field through exclusive interviews and footage. From Lionsgate …
Carine Roitfeld ran French Vogue for 10 years, building a reputation as one of fashion's most influential movers. Her inner circle of friends includes Donatella Versace, Tom Ford, Karl Lagerfeld, Diane von Furstenberg, and Alexander Wang. Yet few people outside the fashion world have heard of her … until now. The documentary "Mademoiselle C" (2013 — France) tells her amazing story and provides a look inside the glamorous universe of high fashion. From Cohen Media Group … "Eric Clapton: The 1970s Review" (2013) follows Eric Clapton's bold musical journey through the 1970s, with exclusive interviews, rare footage and more. In 1968, photo for Eric Clapton: The 1970s Review Eric Clapton was at a crossroads. A virtuoso lead guitarist and the crown prince of heavy rock, with Cream he had quickly risen to the very pinnacle of popular music's hierarchy. Yet his exposure to the work of American mavericks The Band led him to lose faith in his own group, and to embark on a bold musical journey across the following decade. From Sexy Intellectual/MVD Entertainment … "Drawing with Mark: Something Fishy/A Day at the Aquarium and Drawing with Mark: Good to Grow/Life on the Farm" (2014) by artist/illustrator Mark Marderosian teaches children the fundamentals of drawing through simple basic art lessons about shapes, parallel lines, shading, dimension, stick figures and action so a budding artist can feel comfortable moving forward and expanding his/her creativity. Each DVD consists of two 30-minute episodes that combine a field trip to a cool destination with two drawing lessons relating to the field trip, colorful animation, fun facts, trivia, and suggested reading books. $14.98 each from Shelter Island.

 Posted by on March 10, 2014 1 Response »
Mar 102014

photo for The Best of Bogart BLU-RAYThe Best of Bogart Blu-ray Collection is a four-disc set with previously released Blu-ray versions of  "Casablanca," "The Maltese Falcon," "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" and "The African Queen," packed in a nice, compact box with a great cover shot of Bogart; $49.99. Extras: Collectible art cards plus many of the features from the previous releases:

"The African Queen": "Embracing Chaos: Making The African Queen."

"Casablanca": Commentary by Roger Ebert, commentary by film historian Rudy Behlmer, introduction by Lauren Bacall, additional scenes and outtakes, scoring session outtakes, "Bacall on Bogart," "You Must Remember This: A Tribute to Casablanca," "As Time Goes By: The Children Remember," production research gallery, homage cartoon "Carrotblanca," Television Adaptation (1955): "Who Holds Tomorrow," audio only: "Lady Esther Screen Guild Theater Radio Broadcast" of the film with Bogart, Bergman and Henreid reprising their roles, theatrical trailors.

bogart-sell-sheet"The Maltese Falcon": Commentary by Bogart biographer Eric Lax, featurette "The Maltese Falcon: One Magnificent Bird," "Breakdowns of 1941": Studio blooper reel, makeup tests, "Becoming Attractions: The Trailers of Humphrey Bogart," Warner Night at the Movies 1941 short subjects gallery (newsreel, musical short "The Gay Parisian," two classic cartoons: "Hiawatha's Rabbit Hunt" and "Meet John Doughboy"), audio-only bonus: three radio show adaptations — two featuring the movie's original stars, plus another starring Edward G. Robinson.

"The Treasure of the Sierra Madre": Commentary by Bogart biographer Eric Lax, featurette "Discovering Treasure: The Story of The Treasure of the Sierra Madre," documentary profile on John Huston, Warner Night at the Movies 1948 short subjects gallery (newsreel, Joe McDoakes comedy short "So You Want to Be a Detective," classic cartoon "Hot Cross Bunny," trailers), audio-only bonus: radio show adaptation featuring the movie's original stars.

 Posted by on March 10, 2014 No Responses »
Mar 102014

photo for The Bob Newhart Show: The Complete SeriesThe Bob Newhart Show: The Complete Series (1972-78) Nineteen-disc set with all 142 episodes of the sitcom classic that stars the incomparable Bob Newhart as Dr. Robert Hartley, a Chicago psychologist who finds himself surrounded by some unusual and neurotic characters on the job, as well as at home. Stars Suzanne Pleshette as his quick-witted and understanding wife and Bill Daily as his off-kilter neighbor. Formats: DVD. Extras: The original unaired pilot; "Group Therapy" (2014) in which Newhart sits down with Peter Bonerz, Jack Riley, Bill Daily and Michael Zinberg; "The Bob Newhart Show 19th Anniversary" (1991) in which the entire cast assembles for a one-hour clip show that finds the show's characters in the present day; commentaries with Newhart, Marcia Wallace, David Davis, Peter Bonerz, Fred Willard, Jim Burrows, Suzanne Pleshette, Tom Poston and Jack Riley; gag reel; 40 page collectable booklet. $129.99. (Shout! Factory).

 Posted by on March 10, 2014 No Responses »
Mar 062014

The Boy From Stalingrad (1943) boy-stalingrad
At the height of World War II, a group of Russian children are left alone to fend for themselves against the oncoming German army. Through teamwork and their wits, the kids attempt to slow down the advancing horde and give the Russian army enough time to reorganize their troops. A story of youthful initiative and incredible courage, "The Boy From Stalingrad" is a unique and memorable film.

The White Squaw (1956)
Eetay-O-Wahnee (May Wynn, The Caine Mutiny) is a white squaw raised by a Native American tribe. Not knowing her true father, the secret is revealed when he wills her half of his land on his deathbed. A ruthless landowner (David Brian, Intruder in the Dust), however, will do anything to keep Eetay-O-Wahnee and her tribe from getting even an acre of the land.

The Burglar (1957)
Nat Harbin (Dan Duryea, Winchester ’73) and his gang, including the voluptuous Gladden (Jayne Mansfield, The Girl Can’t Help It), have 15 minutes to rob the home of a fake spiritualist (Phoebe Mackay, Splendor in the Grass). Once they steal a valuable necklace from her safe, they go into hiding. As the heat – and a crooked cop trying to get the necklace for himself – closes in on them, tension builds between the crew. They need to get rid of the necklace, and fast.

And So They Were Married (1936)
Stephen (Melvyn Douglas, Being There) and Edith (Mary Astor, The Maltese Falcon, 1941) are a widower and a divorcee, respectively, spending their winter at the same ski resort with their families. When a snowstorm traps the two at the resort, Stephen and Edith start falling for each other. But both Stephen’s and Edith’s children don’t want their parents to get married again, and will do whatever it takes to keep them apart in this beguiling romantic comedy.

Mr. Soft Touch (1949)
Joe Miracle (Glenn Ford, 3:10 to Yuma) is a WWII hero returning home only to find out that his nightclub has been taken over by gangster Barney Teener (Roman Bohnen, The Best Years of Our Lives) and his partner has been killed. Joe steals $100,000 from Barney and goes into hiding in a settlement house where Jenny (Evelyn Keyes, Here Comes Mr. Jordan) works. As Barney’s men chase after Joe, Joe risks the lives of the people inside the home. Also starring John Ireland (All the King’s Men), MR. SOFT TOUCH has it all ­ drama, romance and intrigue.

Adventure in Sahara (1938)
American pilot Jim Wilson (Paul Kelly, Flying Tigers) joins his late brother’s former Foreign Legion troop where they are stationed in Agadez, “The Inferno of the Sahara,” under the command of the cruel Captain Savatt (C. Henry Gordon, Scarface, 1932). The legionnaires revolt, casting Savatt out into the desert. But Savatt returns with new troops, looking to get back his command. Co-written by Samuel Fuller (The Big Red One), "Adventure in Sahara" is a tense military drama.

Passion Flower (1986 – TV Movie)
In Singapore, the streets are filled with danger, passion and excitement. For American businessman Larry Janson (Bruce Boxleitner, TRON), his life changes when he meets Julia Gaitland (Barbara Hershey, Hannah and Her Sisters), the daughter of powerful art smuggler Albert (Nicol Williamson, Excalibur) and the wife of cruel and sadistic businessman Leslie (John Waters, Breaker Morant). As Larry and Julia have an affair, Larry finds himself caught up in crooked dealings, treacherous deceit and murder.

Side Out (1990)
Midwestern kid Monroe Clark (C. Thomas Howell, The Outsiders) moves to Los Angeles to intern for his lawyer uncle (Terry Kiser, Weekend at Bernie’s). But Monroe ends up hanging out at the beach instead and finds himself in the beach volleyball scene. Suddenly, Monroe gets teamed up with former King of the Beach Zack Barnes (Peter Horton, 2 Days in the Valley) to compete in the biggest tournament in the sport. Featuring several volleyball greats – including Randy Stoklos and Sinjin Smith – and Courtney Thorne-Smith (TV’s “According to Jim”), SIDE OUT is a fast-paced and energetic movie.

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Mar 062014

photo for After a mysterious, lost night on their honeymoon, a newlywed couple finds themselves dealing with an earlier-than-planned pregnancy. While recording everything for posterity, the husband begins to notice odd behavior in his wife that they initially write off to nerves, but, as the months pass, it becomes evident that the dark changes to her body and mind have a much more sinister origin. Blu-ray extras: Deleted scenes, "Radio Silence: A Hell of a Tea," commentary by drectors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, director's photo album. Vitals: Director: Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett. Stars: Allison Miller, Zach Gilford, Sam Anderson. 2013, CC, MPAA rating: R, 89 min., Horror, Box office gross: $15.722 million, Fox.

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Mar 062014

photo for The dark, hilarious and deeply touching story of the strong-willed women of the Weston family, whose lives have diverged until a family crisis brings them back to the Midwest house they grew up in, and to the dysfunctional woman who raised them. Tracy Letts’ play made its Broadway debut in December 2007 after premiering at Chicago's legendary Steppenwolf Theatre earlier that year. It continued with a successful international run. Extras: TBA. Vitals: Director: John Wells. Stars: Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Ewan McGregor, Chris Cooper, Benedict Cumberbatch, Abigail Breslin, Juliette Lewis, Dermot Mulroney, Sam Shepard, Margo Martindale, Julianne Nicholson. 2013, CC, MPAA rating: R, 121 min., Drama, Box office gross: $37.066 million, The Weinstein Company/Anchor Bay.

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