Monday, December 22, 2014

Director Roger Corman's The Wild Angels Heads To Blu-ray On Feb. 17 As One Of Olive Films Ten-Title Blu-ray Slate

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey, Nancy Sinatra
Olive Films announced a ten-strong selection of film vault treasures for release on both DVD and Blu-ray this coming Feb. 17.

We begin with legendary filmmaker Roger Corman’s summer of 1966 biker flick, The Wild Angels, which teamed Peter Fonda (pre-Easy Rider) with songstress Nancy “These Boots are Made For Walking” Sinatra in one of her rare film appearances that took place between 1964 and 1968.

It’s making its Blu-ray debut here (previously out on DVD through MGM Home Entertainment).

Of note, Mr. and Mrs. Bruce Dern co-star in this all-action film … that would, of course, be Diane Ladd (nominated three times for Best Supporting Actress … including Wild at Heart and Rambling Rose, both of which co-starred her daughter, Laura Dern).   Also counted among the cast members are newcomers Michael J. Pollard, Gayle Hunnicutt and in an uncredited brawl sequence Peter Bogdanovich (two years later this future auteur filmmaker would make his directorial debut with the Corman-produced Targets).   

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey, Nancy SinatraThat’s one hell of a cast for a drive-in movie … Roger Corman sure knew (knows) how to spot talent!

Bruce Dern returns with the 1968 Dick Clark-produced Psych-Out, which is also making its Blu-ray debut on Feb. 17.   Directed by Richard Rush (Best Director nominee for The Stunt Man), the film starred Jack Nicholson (also pre-Easy Rider) and Susan Strasberg, plus Dean Stockwell, Adam Roarke and future cult filmmaker Henry Jaglom … and of course the Haight-Ashbury district in San Francisco.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey, Annette FunicelloShifting to something a little lighter, we have the late Annette Funicello starring as Dee Dee and teaming with Frankie Avalon in both Muscle Beach Party (1964) and Beach Blanket Bingo (1965).

Other vintage comedies getting a Blu-ray push from Olive Films on Feb. 17 include Kiss Me, Stupid (1964, directed by Billy Wilder and teaming Dean Martin with Kim Novak), How To Murder Your Wife (1964, Jack Lemmon and Virna Lisi) and the final of seven Bing Crosby/Bob Hope “Road” movies, The Road to Hong Kong (1962, co-starring Joan Collins, with a cameo by Dorothy Lamour).

Rounding out this ten-strong selection of new Blu-ray releases is the 1981 Ringo Starr comedy, Caveman, co-starring the future Mrs. Starr, Barbara Bach, along with Shelley Long and Dennis Quaid … and lastly, director Just Jaeckin’s 1981 film adaptation of the D.H. Lawrence novel, Lady Chatterley's Lover, with the late Sylvia Kristel (who rose to fame Emmanuelle in Jaeckin’s 1974 film of the same name) as Lady Chatterley.

Paramount Home Media Distribution Preps Dexter: Most Shocking Episodes DVD For Delivery On Mar. 17

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Paramount Home Media Distribution has tabbed Mar. 17 for the release of three TV-on-DVD themed multi-disc SKUs.  And they are an interesting assembly, especially for fans of two venerable series.

First up, it’s a three-disc, ten-episode collection titled Dexter: Most Shocking Episodes.   That’s right, in a series where also every episode had shock elements, Paramount will be working with Showtime to cull out the ten MOST shocking Dexter Morgan encounters.  
Right now they are mums-the-word on which ten they’ve selected.

Next up on Mar. 17 is the double-disc, eight-episode DVD set titled Star Trek: The Original Series - Captain Kirk's Boldest Adventures.   One thing is certain, crew members of the Starship Enterprise going on away missions with their beloved captain, who just happens to be wearing different color uniforms, will not likely survive the experience. 
Lastly, Mar. 17 brings to fans of the Jennifer Love Hewitt paranormal series, The Ghost Whisperer: The Complete Series … a whopping 29-disc collection!

Trace Adkins: Live Country! On DVD From Eagle Rock Entertainment On Jan. 13

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Eagle Rock Entertainment will deliver on Jan. 13 a New Year’s country music celebration on DVD for all of those Christmas gift-card holders to enjoy.   That’s the street date for the release of Trace Adkins: Live Country!
Filmed live this past August at The Paramount on Long Island in Huntington, New York, Country music, television and film star Trace Adkins served-up a 20 song set for his fans to stomp their feet and sing along to their favorite Adkins’ tunes.

Included in the mix are his first hit, “There’s a Girl in Texas,” plus his first number one recording, “(This Ain’t) No Thinkin’ Thing” and other selections that include “I Left Something Turned on at Home,” “This Ain’t No Love Song,” “Chrome” and “Honky Tonk Badonkadonk.”

Icarus Films Selects Mar. 17 For The DVD Debut Of Director Huang Weikai's Disorder

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
In a society focused on an adherence to the Orwellian model you invariably end up with something like 80 to 90 percent of the population defined as Proles (aka: proletariat).   The Proles are interchangeable cogs in a vast economic wheel driven by a central society — if you need extra labor you simply truck them in from the country and when the task is done you dispatch them home (forcibly, if need be).

There’s no need to “rule” them per say, they simply have no power and no say in how the country is run.  They fend for themselves.  China is such a society.   

Chinese filmmaker Huang Weikai, back in 2009, recognized the inherent chaos of what had descended upon large parts of his country … as a result of a central design. 
DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
He took it upon himself to assemble “found footage” from something like a dozen amateur filmmakers and edited the material into a mosaic of modern China and its rapidly growing cities and the laissez faire mayhem that has sprung up as a result of the adaptation of the Orwellian model.   

Short little snippets that all share a common theme … to hell with the Chairman Mao’s “Little Red Book” and the Cultural Revolution, it’s George Orwell’s “1984” baby!
The result of his labors is the award-winning film, Disorder, which will be making its domestic DVD debut courtesy of Icarus Films on Mar. 17.

Presented in Mandarin, with English subtitles, the DVD release also includes his rarely seen 2005 film, Floating (aka: Piao) as a bonus.

The Criterion Collection Announces Its March 2015 Blu-ray And DVD Release Line-Up

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
The Criterion Collection has unveiled its March release slate and it, as is always the case, has something in the way of new Blu-ray and DVD product offerings that will please film affectionados far and wide.

If you are a fan of film noir, then the Mar. 17 Blu-ray and DVD release of actor/filmmaker Robert Montgomery’s 1947 film, Ride the Pink Horse, will be at the top of your list.

This moody thriller saw veteran character actor Thomas Gomez nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar … bonus features for this newly restored film adaptation of the Dorothy B. Hughes novel include commentary from film noir historians Alain Silver and James Ursini, the 1947 LUX Radio Theatre version, which featured the film’s stars, Gomez, Montgomery and Wanda Hendrix, and a newly prepared interview with Imogen Sara Smith, author of “In Lonely Places: Film Noir Beyond the City.”
DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey

Elsewhere on the Criterion release calendar for the month of March are DVD and Blu-ray editions of French New Wave filmmaker François Truffaut’s 1964 film release of The Soft Skin (with the alluring Françoise Dorléac).

Bonus features include commentary from screenwriter Jean-Louis Richard, who is joined by Truffaut scholar Serge Toubiana, plus there is a vintage interview with Truffaut (circa 1965).
Also on the foreign beat is a newly restored edition of director Ingmar Bergman’s 1972 Best Picture and Best Director nominee, Cries and Whispers … both Blu-ray and double-disc DVD SKUs are in the works for delivery on Mar. 31.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Bonus features here include a newly-mined interview session with Harriet Andersson and a 52-minute presentation titled “Ingmar Bergman: Reflections on Life, Death, and Love with Erland Josephson.”

Rounding out the March release calendar are a pair of releases from filmmaker Errol Morris on Mar. 24 — his 1988 true-crime documentary, The Thin Blue Line (Blu-ray and DVD editions) and the double-feature presentation titled Two Films by Errol Morris: Gates of Heaven/ Vernon, Florida (Blu-ray and double-disc DVD presentations) are planned — and writer/director Steve James’ 1994 sports documentary, Hoop Dreams (also configured as separate Blu-ray and double-disc DVD SKUs).

Dumb And Dumber To Heads To Blu-ray And DVD On Feb. 17 Courtesy Of Universal Studios Home Entertainment

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Universal Studios Home Entertainment takes the silly meter to an “11” on Feb. 17 with the comedy hit, Dumb and Dumber To, starring Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels as Lloyd and Harry … the knucklehead brothers from a different mother who reunite for a third time (if you count that inane 2003 film, Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd, which featured Lloyd and Harry … but not Carrey and Daniels).

The ARR for DVD and Blu-ray (with UltraViolet) editions is a zippy 95 days and domestic ticket sales were a solid $82.1 million.

Bonus nuggets here include a gag reel, an alternate opening sequence, deleted and extended scenes and a pair of production featurettes.

Lionsgate Home Entertainment Selects Feb. 3 For The DVD And Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Rollout Of Keanu Reeves' John Wick

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Keanu Reeves is developing into some of an action star with his second box office hit in a row in that milieu.   47 Ronin pulled in $38.3 million and now his latest, John Wick, tipped the box office scales at a nice $42.4 million.   

Lionsgate Home Entertainment has targeted Feb. 3 as the street date for both DVD and Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack editions of the film … the ARR comes in at 102 days.

Bonus goodies include commentary from stuntman-turned-director Chad Stahelski and a half dozen featurettes, including one title “Don't F*#% With John Wick.”