Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Warner Home Video Tabs Feb. 25 And The Blu-ray And DVD Street Date For Gravity

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
The Best Picture winner for 2013 will likely come down to three candidates.   Director Steve R. McQueen’s film adaptation of the Solomon Northup novel, 12 Years a Slave, director Steve Greengrass’ deeply flawed — but the nevertheless entertaining — Captain Phillips and the majesty of Gravity.

Of course there will be others in contention.   Anytime you have Harvey Weinstein with a $100 million box office and critical success — that being Lee Daniels’ The Butler — you can expect today’s best showman to make it a competitive race.   Scorsese and DiCaprio have teamed for the Wolf of Wall Street … that should be there.  And, Tom Hanks could be competing with himself with both the aforementioned Captain Phillips and director John Lee Hancock’s Disney biopic, Saving Mr. Banks.

Everything else is either too small or haven’t had the theatrical exposure to generated enough buzz … yet!

If “Hollywood” (and we use that term loosely) wants to make a statement and erode theatre-going audiences even further, then a majority of the members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will select 12 Years a Slave as the Oscar-winner for Best Picture.  That’s the PC thing to do.  It is an excellent film and based more or less on actual events prior to the Civil War.   Case closed.

If Hanks knocks Hanks off and both Scorsese and Weinstein come up short, then the winner is … Gravity.

On Feb. 25 (just days before the March 2, 2014 Academy Awards festivities), Warner Home Video will serve-up a three-SKU helping of writer/director Alfonso Cuarón’s Gravity.   In the works are a stand-alone DVD edition and two Blu-ray/DVD Combo Packs — one with and one without a 3D viewing option (all three SKUs include UltraViolet).

The ARR is 144 days and the current box office take is an stratospheric $251.5 million.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyNo word at this time as to bonus goodies, but you can expect this not to be a barebones home entertainment product offering.

In other release news from Warner Home Video, Blu-ray editions of both director Stanley Donen’s 1957 romantic musical comedy, Funny Face (teaming Audrey Hepburn with Fred Astaire) and Billy Wilder’s 1954 romantic comedy, Sabrina (Audrey Hepburn opposite Humphrey Bogart and William Holden) will be released on Apr. 8.

On the DVD release front, a three-disc helping of The Middle: The Complete Fourth Season has been added to Feb. 25 and both Teen Titans Go!: Mission to Misbehave - Season One, Part One and Venture Bros.: The Complete Season Five will be available as double-disc SKUs on Mar. 4.

To download this week's complete edition of the DVD and Blu-ray Release Report:  DVD & Blu-ray Release Report

Well Go U.S.A.'s On The Job Arrives On DVD And Blu-ray On Feb. 18

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Well Go U.S.A. announced this past week that Filipino writer/director Erik Matti’s sensational crime thriller, On the Job, will be heading to DVD and Blu-ray on Feb. 18.

The ARR comes in at 144 days and the limited domestic theatrical run generated ticket sales of $164,620.

If this foreign language import isn’t remade into a big-budget, big-star American blockbuster than it is only because the powers that be are either asleep or brain dead.   This is one sweet — and cleverly twisted — mystery/thriller!   And what makes it even more compelling … it is actually based on a prison scandal that took place in the Philippines.

The film opens with the noise and celebration of a street festival.   Dancing goes hand-in-hand with gunplay as two assassins emerge from the clutter of the crowd to execute — for all to see — a high-level drug dealer.

We only come to realize as the story progresses that the hitmen, Mario "Tatang" Maghari (Joel Torre) and Daniel Benitez (Gerald Anderson) are inmates, who periodically “vanish” from prison to carry out their assignments.   It’s the perfect cover!!!

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Indeed, the police investigation — headed by Sergeant Acosta (Joey Marquez) — is stymied by the mysterious disappearance of the assassins.   Where are they hiding?  Who are they?   Who do they work for … and why the killings?

His investigation is further complicated by the arrival of a green-behind-the-ears federal investigator named Francis (Piolo Pascual), who may be carrying water for those involved in the scheme.

It’s complicated.  It’s clever … and it is loaded with action!

To download this week's complete edition of the DVD and Blu-ray Release Report:  DVD & Blu-ray Release Report

Samson And Delilah On Blu-ray From Paramount Home Media On Mar. 11

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Timed for Easter (Apr. 20 in 2014) is Paramount Home Media’s Mar. 11 Blu-ray debut of director Cecil B. DeMille’s 1949 biblical epic, Samson and Delilah, with Victor Mature and Hedy Lamarr in the title roles and screen veterans George Sanders and Angela Lansbury starring as Saran and Semadar respectively.

Nominated for five Academy Awards, with wins for Best Costume Design and Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, this Technicolor treasure has been fully restored for Hi-Def with Dolby TrueHD Mono sound.

Also on the release calendar from Paramount in March are two waves of new DVD announcments.   Mar. 4 brings forth the latest Dora and Boots adventure, Dora the Explorer: Dora in Wonderland, plus two four-disc SKUs for the Clint Eastwood TV Western classic, Rawhide: The Seventh Season, Part One and Rawhide: The Seventh Season, Part Two.

On Mar. 18 look for DVD editions of Bubble Guppies: Animals Everywhere!, Flashpoint: The Final Season (a three-disc collection) and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutagen Mayhem.

To download this week's complete edition of the DVD and Blu-ray Release Report:  DVD & Blu-ray Release Report

Wolfe Video's Pit Stop Heads To DVD On Feb. 4

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
There are no secrets in a small town.  Dodge, Texas (a few miles off of the I-45 between Houston and Dallas) is such a small town … by all accounts it is a nice, quiet little town.   Peyton Place — way up there in New England a half-century ago — was probably a nice, small, quiet little town as well (and you know how that worked out).

This is the location for writer/director Yet Tan's (Happy Birthday, Ciao) latest award-winning film, Pit Stop, which is making its DVD debut courtesy of Wolfe Video on Feb. 4.

Gabe (Bill Heck) is divorced, a construction worker who works hard at co-raising his daughter with his ex-wife Shannon (Amy Seimetz) … she knows his “secret” and they make the best of it.   Still, it is a lonely existence for a gay man in a small, Texas town.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
When an equally lonely blue collar worker named Ernesto (Marcus DeAnda) finds his life in turn-around after his younger companion moved on he meets Gabe (not really a meet-cute, but a more mundane online hookup) and complication arise that challenge not only their lives, but those around them.   Small towns can be like that.

To download this week's complete edition of the DVD and Blu-ray Release Report:  DVD & Blu-ray Release Report

The Adventures Of Champion The Wonder Horse From Film Chest On Feb. 4

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Film Chest announced this past week that the long wait is over for collectors anxious to get their hands on the 1955/56 short-lived Western adventure series, The Adventures of Champion the Wonder Horse — a spinoff of the popular TV series of the period, The Gene Autry Show, with the legendary Western and theatrical serial filmmaker Armand Schaefer acting as the show’s producer.

23 episodes have been restored from surviving film materials and will arrive on Feb. 4 as a three-disc collection.   The series, starring child star Barry Curtis as Ricky North and Gene Autry’s Champion, featured guest stars that proved to be a virtual who’s who of Western stars of the period, including Tristram Coffin, Roy Barcroft and Walter Reed.

To download this week's complete edition of the DVD and Blu-ray Release Report:  DVD & Blu-ray Release Report

Forward 13: Waking Up The American Dream On DVD From Cinema Libre On Jan. 21

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Cinema Libre announced this past week that documentary filmmaker Patrick Lovell’s Forward 13: Waking Up the American Dream, a self-portrait of the wreckage of his life following the 2008 financial crisis, will be heading to DVD on Jan. 21.

He set out on a cross-country trip to see what others were experiencing — professionals, real estate brokers, small business owners, etc. — and along the way ran smack dab into the middle of the Occupy Wall Street movement.  

Thought-provoking and insightful, regardless of your politics … and if you listen carefully you can’t help but wonder if we are on our way to another bubble and another “Wall Street” financial meltdown (think: Twitter with a current market value of $31.4 billion and no profits in sight — sounds a lot like the housing market on the run-up to 2008).

Bonus features include deleted scenes and additional interviews.

To download this week's complete edition of the DVD and Blu-ray Release Report:  DVD & Blu-ray Release Report

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's Captain Phillips Heads To DVD And Blu-ray On Jan. 21

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has dropped the Best Picture contender, Captain Phillips, into the same street date Tuesday as the previously announced Blue Jasmine.   That would be Jan. 21 (leaving little time over the holidays for sales solicitation … but that may not be a worry with Best Picture prospects on the horizon).   

The ARR for DVD and Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack product offerings (with UltraViolet) is 102 days and ticket sales have grown to $103.5 million.

Bonus goodies include commentary from director Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Ultimatum, United 93, The Bourne Supremacy, etc.) and a three-part behind-the-scenes featurette titled “Capturing Captain Phillips.”

To download this week's complete edition of the DVD and Blu-ray Release Report:  DVD & Blu-ray Release Report