Tuesday, September 23, 2014
Eagle Rock Entertainment has set a powerhouse line-up of new DVD and Blu-ray releases featuring three of the most iconic groups to “perform” in the past fifty years. The Rolling Stones, The Doors and, drum roll please, Monty Python!!! That’s one hell of a threesome!
Kicking off the hit parade on Nov. 4 are DVD and Blu-ray SKUs of The Rolling Stones: From the Vault - Hampton Coliseum, Live in 1981. This live concert was part of the group’s 1981 tour and this venue was set up as a pay-per-view event … raw and live.
The footage from the concert has been restored and legendary Grammy-winner, music engineer and producer Bob Clearmountain has remixed the original tracks (26 numbers in all, plus a “Happy Birthday to Keith” rendition) for this release.
Cuts include “Under My Thumb,” “Time Is On My Side,” “Beast Of Burden,” “Jumping Jack Flash” and topped off with “Satisfaction.”
Nov. 11 brings the DVD and Blu-ray debut of vintage Jim Morrison and The Doors footage filmed by the group. Titled, The Doors: Feast of Friends, the would-be documentary of their 1968 tour … it was never completely finished and with the exception of a few festival screenings (and unauthorized midnight showings) this ill-fated attempt to capture the group in cinéma vérité blend of behind-the-scenes and on-stage performances has been MIA (for almost 45 years).
Fully restored from the original negative, the film has been color-corrected and mastered in HD with a newly remixed soundtrack and supervised by Bruce Botnick. In addition to this 45-minute “time capsule,” Eagle Rock Entertainment has included three bonus goodies to complete this must-have for fans of The Doors.
These are: Feast of Friends: Encore, a newly-prepared look at this unique period in the group’s history, The Doors are Open, a vintage 1968 Brit-TV documentary and The End, which was filmed in Toronto, Canada during August of 1967.
You can toss the bootlegs … come Nov. 11 The Doors: Feast of Friends on DVD and Blu-ray will be the keeper!
Also on Nov. 11 are DVD and Blu-ray editions of the ultra-exclusive, ten-shows only presentation of Monty Python Live (mostly): One Down Five to Go.
Filmed at the famed O2 venue in London on the last of the ten-shows only run, the reunion of Monty Python (sans Graham Chapman, who appears via video clips) was an amazing live stage show. Comedy skits and classic musical numbers — that all Python fans can sing without a bouncing ball — were blended nicely with new bits that left all ten audiences wanting more! And we’re talking three-hours on-stage!
The Stones, The Doors and Monty Python, who could possibly ask for more?
Well, how about more Stones to cap off the three-week run of new-to-DVD and Blu-ray product offerings!!!
Eagle Rock Entertainment does an encore on Nov. 18 with The Rolling Stones: From the Vault - L.A. Forum, Live in 1975. This classic live concert (40 years ago) will be available as newly-restored DVD and Blu-ray editions.
Two-and-a-half hours on stage, with 25 numbers and capped off by “Sympathy For The Devil,” it just doesn’t get any better than that! Other songs in the mix that night include “Gimme Shelter,” “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” “Brown Sugar” and “Jumpin’ Jack Flash.”
No matter how you cut it … that’s one hell of a November line-up!
Writer/Director John Bevilacqua’s My Funny Valentine Will Make Its DVD Debut On Nov. 18 From FilmWorks Entertainment
FilmWorks Entertainment announced this past week that writer/director John Bevilacqua’s My Funny Valentine, a comedy about love and writing, will be making its DVD debut on Nov. 18.
Zander (Tom Payne — The Physician, Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day) is a writer suffering from a form of “writer’s block.” No, he can write the words quite nicely, that’s not his problem. But when it comes to the one thing that he really wants, love, he’s folds-up like a house cards into an insecure heap.
He can’t just write love into his life — it just doesn’t work that way — but that exactly what he has in mind when he meets Zoe (Pippa Black — Lemon Tree Passage, as Tonya in TV sitcom Outsourced, etc.). Thunderstruck, he asks her to assist him with his latest film script, and in doing so figures that he will eventually write his way into her heart. We shall see how that works out!!!
My Funny Valentine is also a love story about the city of Los Angeles, which has never looked more inviting than the way filmmaker John Bevilacqua has filmed it. Even with the budgetary limitations of an indie flick he delivers a side of the city that few see.
This delightful comedy also includes an inviting soundtrack and some quirky characters (advice to the lovelorn comes from all quarters) that tie it all together nicely.
Bonus features include newly-prepared cast interviews.
Wolfe's Selects Oct. 28 As The DVD Debut Date For Documentary Filmmakers Mark Herzog and Sandrine Orabona’s Lady Valor: The Kristin Beck Story
Chris Beck did 13 tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan as a Navy SEAL. They don’t come any tougher than that and Beck has the honors to prove it, but senior chief Christopher Beck’s greatest challenge came after service as a Navy SEAL, when it was revealed on an Anderson Cooper 360° that he revealed that he was a transgender and who would transition to Kristin Beck.
On Oct. 28 Wolfe will present the DVD debut of documentary filmmakers Mark Herzog and Sandrine Orabona’s Lady Valor: The Kristin Beck Story. This in-depth look at Beck’s life before — and after — the announcement details the reactions, the friendships won and lost and the battle that didn’t end in the deserts of Afghanistan and Iraq, but continue anew.
Bonus features include footage of Beck in both training and combat and an additional extended interview with Kristine prepared after Lady Valor: The Kristin Beck Story was completed.
Paramount Home Media Distribution Tabs Dec. 9 As The Street Date For A Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Edition Of My Fair Lady: 50th Anniversary Ediition
Paramount Home Media Distribution will be celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the theatrical release of My Fair Lady on Dec. 9 with a newly restored special edition Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack edition.
Bonus goodies include the documentary More Loverly Than Ever: The Making of My Fair Lady Then and Now, the featurette titled “Comments on a Lady,” a vintage interview with filmmaker Martin Scorsese and treasures from the vaults related to this timeless classic, including highlights from the 1965 Oscar ceremonies, footage from both the London and Los Angeles premieres and alternate vocals from Audrey Hepburn.
In other release news this week from Paramount Home Media, the Stephen King bestseller, Under the Dome — which started out as an event mini-series, but was so successful that it “mutated” into a full-blown series — returns on Dec. 9 with both Blu-ray and DVD editions of Under the Dome: Season Two.
Bonus features include “Readings from the Dome,” “Welcome Back to Chester’s Mill,” and “Inside/Outside: The Transmedia World,” plus an interview with writer Stephen King.
The following week, Dec. 16, Halle Berry’s sci-fi series, produced by none other than Steven Spielberg, Extant: The First Season will be heading to the consumer market place as both DVD and Blu-ray sets (all 13 episodes).
A mysterious space mission (with an “impossible” conclusion) and a robotic “son” (whose program appears to have sanctioned itself) are only a few of the mysteries that confront astronaut Molly Woods (Halle Berry) and her husband John (Goran Visnjic) when she returns from a 13-month solo mission in space.
Bonus nuggets include featurettes variously titled “Extant: Filming Season One,” “The Story of Extant,” “Extant: The Cast,” “The Offspring” and “The Future World of Extant,” plus a there are a collection of CBS video promos for the series.
Who needs a time machine when you have a deep freeze that puts some very interesting individuals on ice dating all the way back to the Ming Dynasty (16th Century ice-encased relics).
That’s the premise of director Law Wing Cheong’s mega-budget Iceman, which is heading to the domestic market as DVD and Blu-ray product offerings from Well Go U.S.A. on Nov. 11.
Four ancient “icemen” are uncovered in the film’s prologue in China and are carefully placed in cryo-status tubes for transport back to the lab for examination, but an accident occurs enroute and the time-trapped warriors suddenly find themselves on the streets of Hong Kong.
Ying (Donnie Yen — Ip Man, Lung Fu Moon, The Founding of a Republic), a palace guard wrongfully-accused of murder, awakens to find himself in an alien world. He has, however, the very good fortune of bumping into May (Shengyi “Eva” Huang — Kung Fu Hustle, The Emperor and the White Snake, etc.) on — as luck would have it — Halloween, so his odd “costume” goes pretty much unnoticed in the manic streets of Hong Kong.
She helps him get orientated (and naturally romance blooms in the process) to his new surroundings, but time and events from a bygone era have a peculiar way of catching up, even to those who are completely out of step with it.
The others that were frozen with him are out for revenge, but they are just as disoriented as he is … which makes for some interesting action sequences as the technology of the Ming Dynasty comes face to face with modern Hong Kong!
Bonus features for Iceman, which is presented in Cantonese with English subtitles, include a behind-the-scenes featurette titled “The Making of Iceman.”
Filmmaker Michelle Ehlen's Laugh-Out-Loud Comedy Hetrosexual Jill Makes Its DVD Splash From Ariztical Entertainment On Oct. 28
OMG … that’s the quickest way to start when it comes to a description of writer, director and star Michelle Ehlen's Hetrosexual Jill. With tongue firmly planted-in-cheek, and yet not afraid to cut loose with some out-and-out slapstick humor, she serves up one perfectly-pitched and very outrageous “romantic comedy.”
Hetrosexual Jill will be making its DVD bow on Oct. 28 courtesy of Ariztical Entertainment.
Jill (Jen McPherson) is in a support group for “ex-lesbians” and as sort of a final test to see if the “cure” for such desires has taken hold she turns to her former partner, Jamie (Ehlen), to see if she can weather her super-butch storm. Of course it all goes sideways … and hilariously so.
There are sight gags, there’s stand-up (if Michelle Ehlen ever tires of acting or filmmaking she’s an absolute natural in her comedic timing … there’s a career waiting in stand up) and her actors play it all to the hilt, with kudos to McPherson for being both funny, sexy and the perfect foil (her timing is always right there).
And, as a bonus, Ehlen gives plenty of screen time to Keye Chen who delivers a rat-a-tat-tat style of comedy that is both infectious and spot-on funny. It doesn’t matter if you are gay or straight … a funny film is a funny film and that’s exactly what Hetrosexual Jill is in spades!
Documentary Filmmaker Brett Culp's Legends Of The Knight Arrives On DVD On Nov. 18 Courtesy Of Virgil Films And Entertainment
Virgil Films & Entertainment has targeted Nov. 18 as the DVD debut date for documentary filmmaker Brett Culp’s Legends of the Knight.
Since the height of World War II, when Lewis Wilson became the first actor to portray Batman on the silver screen in director Lambert Hillyer’s 1943 serial (15 thrill-packed chapters) for Columbia Pictures — it was simply titled Batman — this crime-fighting hero has been a part of American culture.
Even before that as the comic book creation of Bob Kane (beginning in 1936). Following the war, director Spencer Gordon Bennet delivered Batman and Robin, a second 15-chapter serial adventure in 1949, this time starring Robert Lowery as the mysterious Gotham crime-fighter.
It wasn’t until 1966 that Batman and his trusty sidekick Robin returned to the screen. Adam West teamed with Burt Ward for the 1966 theatrical release of Batman, which was an offshoot of the popular TV series (also starring West and Ward) that was launched the same year.
Of note, the Batman TV series will be heading to home entertainment as a complete collection on Blu-ray from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment on Nov. 11, so Virgil Films timing here is spot-on.
For years the character was relegated to the world of animation; TV adventures, etc. but then in 1989 the character of Batman was re-launched as a theatrical vehicle (big-budget and all) with Michael Keaton as the super hero in director Tim Burton’s smash film hit of the same name, Batman.
He reprised the role in 1992 in Batman Returns (also directed by Burton) … Val Kilmer took over in 1995 (Batman Forever), George Clooney followed in 1997 (Batman & Robin) … and then once again the legendary super hero of Bob Kane comic book inspiration dropped out of sight.
In 2005 director Christopher Nolan teamed with actor Christian Bale to re-imagine Batman with a trio of mega-theatrical hits — Batman Begins (2005), The Dark Knight (2008) and The Dark Knight Rises (2012).
Filmmaker Brett Culp, inspired by tales of ordinary people taking on the Batman persona — coupled with the latest wave of cinematic tales — took to the streets to document their stories. They range from the mundane to the inspirational, but all connect to Batman as a source to either do wonderful acts of kindness and generosity, or, quite simply, as a source of strength to get them from one day to the next.
The result, Legends of the Knight, is a delightful and always fascinating bit of storytelling … all the more so in that it is drawn from the tales of ordinary Batmen (and women).
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Adds A Newly-Minted Blu-ray Edition Of Yankee Doodle Dandy To Its Oct. 14 Release Calendar
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has a Blu-ray edition of James Cagney’s 1942 Best Actor Oscar-winning biopic, Yankee Doodle Dandy, lined for release on Oct. 14.
The film was nominated for eight Oscars, including Best Picture (losing out to Mrs. Miniver) and Best Director (Michael Curtiz) and in addition to Cagney’s win, the film also captured Oscar gold for Best Sound and Best Music.
Bonus features include commentary from film historian Rudy Behlmer, the documentary titled Let Freedom Sing!: The Story of Yankee Doodle Dandy, the classic Looney Tunes cartoon, Bugs Bunny Gets the Boid, a vintage newsreel from the period and more!
Mill Creek Entertainment Expands October Release Selections With Nine New DVD Collections That Will Be Consumer-Ready On Oct. 21
Mill Creek Entertainment continues to expand its array of DVD and Blu-ray product offerings for delivery to consumers with an eye towards building collections with nine additional SKUs … all set for delivery on Oct. 21.
Leading the way are four American History and American War mega-sets, which range in size from nine to 13 discs. American History Collection: Prelude to Power tackles such subjects as the history of firearms (over 400 years), the history and growth the national railway system, an in-depth look at President Lincoln, the business of petroleum and more.
The American History Collection: Rise from Oppression covers such topics as slavery, Native Americans and black men and women who have served in the military.
American War Collection: Patriots at War covers the period from the Revolutionary War through World War I, while American War Collection: WWII Battle Chest focuses exclusively on World War II and counts among its extensive selection the entire 26-episode Emmy-winning series, Victory at Sea.
For those film fans looking for “instant libraries” there are two new 20-disc, 100-film collections heading to retail on that date. The first of these is titled 100 Movie Collection: 100 Action Flicks and features the likes of Hercules Unchained (and four additional Hercules classics), five Tarzan films, including Tarzan and The Green Goddess, over 20 war-themed films and 40 Westerns, with half of those starring John Wayne.
The other 20-disc, 100-film set is titled 100 Movie Collection: 100 Family Films and it delivers over 136 hours of family-friendly programming. From classics — Gulliver's Travels and Jack and the Beanstalk — to family adventures — Against A Crooked Sky, Seven Alone and Wackiest Wagon Train in the West — there are 100 film treasures to select from (absolutely something for everyone in the family).
Rounding-out the nine-strong Oct. 21 package are Holiday Gift Set: Movie Collection, a 16-film set that includes Santa Who?, The Miracle on 34th Street, Christmas Story Lady, Scrooge and Noel, A Christmas Without Snow; TV Guide Spotlight: Golden Age of Television, 18-disc set that that includes 40 episodes of The Beverly Hillbillies and selections from such greats as The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet, The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Milton Berle Show and Petticoat Junction and last, but not least, we have the TV Guide Spotlight: TV's Greatest Heroes and Legends (also 18-discs), which includes 31-episodes of Bonanza, the complete first seasons of both The Adventures of Robin Hood and Wanted: Dead or Alive … and more!
For a complete listing of all of these new DVD product announcements please visit Mill Creek Entertainment’s web site at Mill Creek Entertainment.