"The movie business is macabre. Grotesque.
It is a combination of a football game
and a brothel."
-- Federico Fellini
Dec 092014


First Time in Widescreen!

Talk about Holiday Miracles! Warner Home Video is pleased to re-present a sextet of cinema delights outfitted for the New Year in their wondrous widescreen aspect ratios – for the fist time on Home Video! Fire up the HDTV and get ready for some rectangular 16×9 action!

THE BLACK SCORPION (1957) A lean budget goes a long way when the master of movie miracles, Willis O’Brien (King Kong), is on hand to deliver up the SFX. After unexpected seismic activity unleashes a swarm of stupendous scorpions from the bowels of the earth, a pair of geologists lead the vanguard tasked with dispatching them back. Co-starring Richard Denning (Creature from the Black Lagoon) and pin-up queen Mara Corday (Tarantula).

DIVINE MADNESS (1980) Accomplished directing vet Michael Ritchie took a camera crew on tour with the divine Ms. Middler as her career was going stratospheric, capturing her magic across four concerts and the carefully crafting them into one. Backed up by her trio The Harlettes, Bette serves up song and risqué comedy in equal portions. Favorite songs include “Big Noise From Winnetka,” “Paradise,” “Fire Down Below,” “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” “Do You Want to Dance,” “You Can¹t Always Get What You Want,” “I Shall Be Released”, and “The Rose”, as delivered as on Bette Midler can.

THE MAN WITH TWO BRAINS (1983) Steve Martin’s Sci-Fi Horror satire classic, now roomy enough for both brains! Directed by comedy titan Carl Reiner (and co-written by Martin, Reiner and George Gipe), The Man with Two Brains features Martin as the brilliant neurosurgeon Michael Hfuhruhurr who finds himself in a fatal love triangle with Dolores Benedict, a body-ful femme fatale (Kathleen Turner) and Anne Uumellmahaye, a bodiless brain beautiful (an uncredited Sissy Spacek). And who¹s that waiting in the wings? The sinister elevator killer!

MY BLUE HEAVEN (1990) Stave Martin and Rick Moranis co-star in this witness protection buddy comedy inspired by the life of Henry Hill (also the inspiration for GoodFellas). Vinne Antonelli (Martin) trades in the mob for the Œburbs when he agrees to testify against the mob, and its up to milquetoast Federal Agent Barney Coopersmith (Moranis) to keep him out of trouble until the trial. And alive. Co-starring Joan Cusack, with a script by Nora Ephron. Directed by Herbert Ross.

RUNNING ON EMPTY (1988) River Phoenix takes centerstage in this coming-of-age cum political suspenser from Sidney Lumet along with an all-star ensemble. Phoenix plays Danny Pope, who has grown to teen-hood under an ever shifting number of identities while on the run with his radical fugitive parents (Judd Hirsch and Christine Lahti). When Danny finds something worth staying put for (Martha Plimpton), Danny’s parents are faced with letting go or losing. The chemistry on display between Phoenix and Plimpton has lead the film to become a teen romance cult favorite for subsequent generations.

JOE’S APARTMENT (1996) This flick’s outré gross-out comedy antics were too much for the critics of its day, but now they are merely the entree to a dinner of mirth and sentiment (time changes tastes, kids!). Jerry O’Connell stars as Joe, the ultimate innocent, fresh from the midwest and ripe for the plucking by the Big Bad Apple. Luckily, Joe lands an apartment in the East Village infested with some very frisky – and melodious – cockroaches who help Joe find romance (Megan Ward) and defeat an evil real estate developer (Robert Vaughn). The skillful blend of CG and stop motion from now-legendary animation studio Blue Sky launched them into features, aided and abetted by some notable voices (Billy West, Reginald Hudlin, Dave Chapelle and Tim Blake Nelson among others).

NOTE: These DVDs are Manufactured on Demand (MOD); to order, fans must visit The Warner Archive Collection, WB Shop.com, Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

 Posted by on December 9, 2014  Add comments

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