Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The Film Detective Delivers 50 New Film Restorations To DVD On Sept. 1

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
The Film Detective revealed this past week that they will be making another 50 new film restorations available on DVD effective Sept. 1.   That’s very good news for movie lovers, especially with the company’s distinctive theatrical poster campaign DVD package art as a calling card.

Each round of 50 new film presentations has a little something for everyone, so let’s get right to it!   

We begin with a two new Mr. Wong mysteries starring Boris Karloff as James Lee Wong.   The creation of Collier’s Magazine writer Hugh Wiley, The Film Detective released Doomed to Die in August, Mr. Wong, Detective in July and The Mystery of Mr. Wong in March.    

On Sept. 1 Boris Karloff completes the five-film series with director William Nigh’s 1939 film release of Mr. Wong in Chinatown and Nigh’s 1940 follow-up, The Fatal Hour (both films co-star series regulars Grant Withers as Capt. Bill Street and Marjorie Reynold as Bobbie Logan).

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyKeye Luke took over the role of Mr. Wong for one additional film, Phantom of Chinatown and then the series was dropped by Monogram Pictures ... perhaps that one too will be counted among a 50-film release package from The Film Detective.

Screen legend Boris Karloff can also be enjoyed in another Monogram Pictures release from 1940 as part of this September release package.   That would be The Ape, another film from prolific filmmaker William Nigh (120 directing credits dating back to the silent era, plus additional acting, producing and writing film credits along the way).  

Here we find Karloff as a well-intention doctor who seeks to cure a young woman (played by Maris Wrixon) of polio.   Sadly, he becomes unhinged in his attempts and turns into a serial killer disguised as an escaped circus ape to obtain the necessary human “fluids” for his work.

You can’t have Boris Karloff without Bela Lugosi, right?   These two iconic horror legends — Frankenstein’s monster and Dracula — appeared in over 300 films in their combined careers, including eight together.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
So The Film Detective has Bela Lugosi starring in five horror classics (actually, one is comedy with “horror” trappings).

The earliest in the mix — and not to be confused with the aforementioned Mr. Wong series — is director William Nigh’s 1934 horror/mystery, The Mysterious Mr. Wong.  Here Lugosi is             shopkeeper Fu Wong, but this is just a disguise as his real identity is that of Lai See, an evil man on a mission to become ruler of an important region in China.   All he needs are the Twelve Coins of Confucius and murder is his method of obtaining them!!!
Next in line is director Joseph H. Lewis’ 1941 film release titled Invisible Ghost.  When Dr. Kessler’s (Lugosi) wife, (played by Betty Compson) dumps him another man, he becomes unhinged and goes on a murder spree that leads to the execution of an innocent man.

Next in line is director Wallace Fox’s 1942 film release of The Corpse Vanishes, which has Lugosi starring as Dr. Lorenz, a mad scientist, who has taken to killing young women on their wedding days (virgins) for their bodily fluids.  These are then transformed into a serum that keeps his elderly wife (played by Elizabeth Russell) young … hot shot reporter Pat Hunter (Luana Walters) uncovers his serial killing ways, but could end up being his next victim as she too is a virgin!!!

The following year, it is director William Beaudine’s 1943 Monogram Pictures production of The Ape Man.   Once again Lugosi is your classic mad scientist, Dr. Brewster (aided by Henry Hall as Randall), whose latest bit of “research” has transformed the nutty doctor into an ape-like man.  You guessed it, the only cure for this are the bodily fluids of healthy human beings … pure horror!!! 
DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey

And last, but not least in this Lugosi treasure trove of DVD film releases, is director Frank McDonald’s 1944 “haunted house” comedy, One Body Too Many.  Red herrings, rat poison and other gags have insurance salesman Albert Tuttle (Jack Haley) being mistaken for a famous detective hired to guard the corpse of a multi-millionaire (an elaborate will), who comes to the aid of Carol (Jean Parker), one the relatives, in solving the mystery of who is killing the heirs to the family fortune.   Lugosi plays the mysterious butler, Merkil.

Wow, five Lugosi films and three starring Karloff from The Film Detective on Sept. 1.  That’s a one hell of a start!!

Other film nuggets include four new East Side Kids adventures starring Leo Gorcey, Huntz Hall, Bobby Jordan and friends.   These are director Wallace Fox’s 1942 comedies, Let's Get Tough and ‘Neath Brooklyn Bridge and filmmaker William Nigh’s comedy from the same year, Mr. Wise Guy.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyBefore transforming in a comedy series (first as the East Side Kids and then as the Bowery Boys), there was a harder edge to some of the films.   The 1940 film release of Pride of the Bowery (directed by Joseph H. Lewis) is one such film in the series that was more drama than comedy.

You can see from just this sampling that The Film Detective’s 50-film onslaught is loaded with collectible treasures.   These include director Arthur Lubin’s 1949 film noir, Impact, starring Brian Donlevy, Helen Walker and Ella Raines; director Robert Stevenson’s 1947 film adaptation of the Edward Sheldon stage play, Dishonored Lady (Hedy Lamarr, Dennis O’Keefe and John Loder star) and writer/director Fletcher Markle’s 1949 film noir entry, Jigsaw, starring Franchot Tone, Jean Wallace and Marc Lawrence.

For a complete listing of all of the new Sept. 1 DVD release please see page 6 in this week’s edition of the report, or visit The Film Detective website (thefilmdetective.com).

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey

The Criterion Collection November DVD And Blu-ray Release Slate Is Revealed

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyThe November release calendar for new DVD and Blu-ray product offerings from the Criterion Collection is out and, as usual, there are some real film jewels to be savored this fall.

These range from filmmaker Satyajit Ray’s Apu Trilogy to director Richard Brooks’ In Cold Blood and a newly restored presentation of D. A. Pennebaker’s Don’t Look Back.

In chronological order we begin with the Nov. 3 DVD release of Julien Duvivier in the Thirties, a four-disc, four-film collection featuring the early works of the French filmmaker — noted for Pépé le Moko, Flesh and Fantasy, Anna Karenina and Deadlier Than the Male.   

Included in the collection are: David Golder (1931, with Harry Baur in the title role — an adaptation of the Irène Némirovsky novel), Poil de Carotte (1932, with Robert Lynen and Harry Baur), La Tete d'un Homme (1933, Gaston Jacquet, Alexandre Rignault, Valéry Inkijinoff and Harry Baur) and Un Carnet de Bal (1937, Marie Bell teams with Harry Baur).  

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyAll four films are in French with English subtitles.

Nov. 10 brings us a newly 2K digital transfer of director Michael Haneke’s social commentary drama, Code Unknown.   Bonus features for both the Blu-ray and DVD (2 disc set) include a newly minted video session with filmmaker Michael Haneke, a documentary on the making of the film and a vintage session with Haneke.   

On Nov. 17, the Criterion Collection has newly restored DVD and Blu-ray collections of Indian filmmaker Satyajit Ray’s 1950s film trilogy masterpiece, The Apu TrilogyPather Panchali (1955), Aparajito (1956) and Apur Sansar (1959).

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyBonus features include vintage audio-only comments from director Satyajit Ray (circa 1958), newly-prepared video sessions with actors Soumitra Chatterjee, Shampa Srivastava, and Sharmila Tagore and new featurette titled “The Apu Trilogy: A Closer Look.”

On the same date a new 4K digital restoration of director Richard Brooks’ 1967 film adaption of Truman Capote’s serialized novel, In Cold Blood.   Nominated for four Oscars — Best Director and Best Writing for Brooks, Best Cinematography for Conrad L. Hall and Quincy Jones received an Oscar nomination for his score — the DVD and Blu-ray SKUs being released by Criterion include four newly-prepared video discussions that focus on the film’s cinematography, editing, musical score and direction.

Other bonus nuggets are vintage interview sessions with Brooks and Capote and a 1966 documentary shot titled “With Love from Truman.”

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
The month of November concludes on the 24th with documentary filmmaker D.A. Pennebaker’s 1967 Bob Dylan “time capsule,” Don’t Look Back (technically “Dont” is spelled without the apostrophe in the film’s title) and iconic Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa’s 1952 film release of Ikiru.

Bonus features for Don’t Look Back include vintage commentary featuring filmmaker Pennebaker and tour manager Bob Neuwirth, the 2006 documentary, 65 Revisited and more.

Iriru sports a new 4K restoration and is accompanied by the feature-length documentary, A Message from Akira Kurosawa, and a vintage commentary track featuring author Stephen Prince (“The Warrior’s Camera: The Cinema of Akira Kurosawa”).

Monday, August 31, 2015

Mill Creek Entertainment Announces Its October DVD And Blu-ray Release Slate

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Mill Creek Entertainment announced a double-wave of new DVD and Blu-ray product offerings that will be ready at retail beginning on Oct. 6, with the second group streeting on Oct. 20.   

Stand back, make room, you are going to need some extra shelf space on Oct. 6 for the massive 22-disc DVD collection featuring the two Darrins — Dick York and Dick Sargent — and the magical Samantha (Elizabeth Montgomery).  

Of course this would be Bewitched: The Complete Series and Mill Creek Entertainment has all 254 episodes for this multi-Emmy Award winner in their original broadcast form in this priced-to-own sitcom classic (SRP is $69.98 and that’s before discounts at retail).

Another “magical” show on the Oct. 6 on the Mill Creek Entertainment’s release calendar is the 12-disc set of Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman’s nose-twitching sitcom, I Dream of Jennie: The Complete Series.   All 139 episodes — also presented in their original broadcast versions — are on view here.
DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey

There are four kidvid selections on the Oct. 6 release calendar as well.   Included here are the double-disc release of Care Bears: The Complete Series (all 22 adventures), Maxie's World: The Complete Series (also two discs showcasing 32 stories from Surfside USA), the four-disc/40-episode adventures of Izzy the Owl, Benita the Beaver and Sammy the Skunk in Wild Animal Baby Explorers: The Complete Series and have 52 episodes worth of fun with Shelldon, Herman and Connie in the four-disc collection of Shelldon: Under the Sea Adventures!

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Also making a DVD debut on Oct. 6 is the writing/directing team of Luke Dye and Curt Willis’ Dove Family-Approved release of The Little Ponderosa Zoo.

Charlie (Kena Holmes — Bandit and the Saints of Dogwood) and her parents Jack (Damon Boggess) and Judy (Leigh Ann Jernigan) operate a “rescue” zoo in Tennessee (filmed on location in Clinton, Tennessee).  It’s a razor’s edge operation, with an annual charity festival, that the locals support, the only thing that keeps them going — and keep the animals in a safe environment (which include everything from a tiger to llamas, wallabies, an emu and a camel).

But when the local banker, Bob Defain (James D. Owens), discovers that the zoo is perched on an old gold mine he teams with the town’s mayor (Mike Stanley) and his idiot nephew to undermine the annual festival and drive Charlie and her parents into foreclosure.  

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyIt looks grim, but Charlie gets wind of their plan and teams with her pup Duggar and the rest of the zoo animals to concoct a plan that will thwart their money-grubbing scheme!!!   
Rounding out the Oct. 6 DVD release selections is the double disc/seven-part documentary series, Monsters Among Us, which focuses on the “real-world” experiences that have fueled the legends of vampires, werewolves and zombies.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Shifting to Oct. 20 is the Blu-ray debut of the Western event mini-series Lonesome Dove (also available as a double-disc DVD edition).   

 It will be joined by DVD releases of these television mini-series as well: Gulliver's Travels (Ted Danson is the Jonathan Swift's Gulliver), Moby Dick (Patrick Stewart stars as Captain Ahab) and The Odyssey (with Armand Assante as Odysseus and Greta Scacchi as Penelope).

And lastly, on Nov. 3, Mill Creek Entertainment has — drum roll please — the 18-disc Blu-ray collection of That ‘70s Show as its prime release for the month.  Your eyes did not deceive you — 18 Blu-ray discs!!!   

All 200 episodes in HD!!!

Plus, there are six-hours worth of bonus nuggets — an interactive trivia game, bloopers, behind-the-scenes webisodes, “Cast Flashbacks” and selected episode commentaries from director David Trainer … and more!!!

Wolfe To Release 15th Anniversary Edition Of Writer/Director Thomas Bezucha’s Big Eden On Blu-ray On Oct. 13

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Wolfe announced this past week that writer/director Thomas Bezucha’s critically-acclaimed and multi-awarding-winning film release of Big Eden will be celebrating its 15th Anniversary in a big way on Oct. 13 with the debut of a newly remastered Blu-ray edition.

Big Eden is a timeless tale of finding the things that are important in life — community, friendship, happiness and love — in the most unlikely of places.   In the case of Henry Hart (Arye Gross — as Perlmutter in the television series Castle, plus such films as Minority Report, Burning Down the House, Harvest, etc.), a gay man and a successful New York City-based artist, he has “escaped” from Big Eden, the small Montana town of his youth.   Those days are behind him … or so he thinks.

When news arrives that Sam (played by late George Coe), his grandfather — who raised him — has suffered a stroke and is bedridden, he drops everything and heads west.    

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
What he finds — and how filmmaker Thomas Bezucha handles his story — is something unexpected.   All of the things that he expected in the city have been waiting for him to discover in the small town environment of his youth.   

Bonus features include a vintage commentary option featuring writer/director Thomas Bezucha and a newly-prepared featuretted titled “Remembering Big Eden,” which features video sessions with Bezucha and Gross, plus actors Eric Schweig, Tim DeKay and Louise Fletcher.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey


Wild Eye Releasing Tabs Nov. 24 As The DVD Release Date For Director Sean Cain's The Last House

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Wild Eye Releasing has tabbed Nov. 24 for the DVD debut of director Sean Cain’s The Last House.

She calls herself Love (Lauren Walsh — The New Republic, 18-Year-Old Virgin, etc.).  It is not her real name of course, but her “professional” name.   Love is a hooker; a call girl … or if you prefer, an escort.

Her “manager” is a delightful fellow by the name of Sonny (Jack Forcinito — Jurassic City, Silent Night, Zombie Night).   Now there is nothing “sunny” about him, he’s a nothing more than a lowlife creep.   Love wants out, she has a boyfriend named Ned (played by none other than Jason Mewes, the “Jay” in Jay and Silent Bob — Clerks, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, etc.) and its serious … time to hang up the lingerie and high heels.

Which brings us to her last “gig.”   A trio-on-trio booked by our boy Sonny.   Safety in numbers right?  With co-workers Hailey (Jeanine Daniels — as Deon in the That Guy television series) and Jenna (Alexis Zibolis — Plaguers, The Blackout) as her companions what could possibly happen.   Get in, get in done and retire.  Simple.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
They show up at a Malibu Beach estate where the unexpected awaits them.   Their “clients” turn out to be a trio of escaped psychopaths headed up by a disturbed charmer with the name of Hate (Ezra Buzzington — Lost Lake, New Terminal Hotel).   His minions, Cleb (Ricardo Gray) and Selma (Monique Parent) are just as sick and now have, like a cat with a mouse, some fresh “meat” to amuse themselves with.

Surviving this gig — with this trio of insane fetish freaks — will be quite the challenge for Love … it could very well be her last.

Bonus goodies included with the DVD release of The Last House include deleted scenes and video session with director Sean Cain (Jurassic City, Silent Night, Zombie Night, Naked Beneath the Water).

Film Chest Media Group Gets An Early Jump On The Holiday Season With The Oct. 20 DVD Release Of The Merry Yule Log

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
It is not the time to panic, but the Christmas holiday season is just over the horizon … the countdown clock has started to tick away.   

To take some of the edge off, the Film Chest Media Group has the perfect ambient icebreaker planned for an early delivery on DVD on Oct. 20 (a two-month head start).  Titled The Merry Yule Log, this HD presentation provides consumers with two presentation options.   The first being a fire in a fireplace set to natural sounds — a full hour of mood-enhance viewing.

The second presentation option is that of the fireplace with 17 different Christmas-season songs.   Included in the mix are the likes of recording artist Kevin Madill’s delivery of “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” and “Away in a Manger” and his muisc group, Connye Florance’s interpretation of “Emmanuel.”

Other artists include Brian Withycombe’s “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” and “Little Drummer Boy;” Big D Nui’s “What Child is This;” Andy Suzuki’s presentation of “Deck the Halls” and Maria Muldaur’s “Silent Night.”

With an SRP of just $6.98, The Merry Yule Log is a holiday-themed DVD that is perfect for years of enjoyment!

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey

This Summer's Biggest Blockbuster — Jurassic World — Gets An Oct. 20 Greenlight From Universal Studios Home Entertainment

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
There is that nagging question that goes: “What will be the street date for DVD and Blu-ray editions of the biggest summer movie of 2015 (hint: it features an Indominus Rex)?”   The answer is: “Any damn street date it desires.”  

With $639.6 million (and counting), director Colin Trevorrow's Jurassic World could be released at noon on a Sunday, at midnight on a Wednesday, or as Universal Studios Home Entertainment announced this past week, on Oct. 20.

For the record, that mid-October release date yields an ARR of 130 days.

Planned for the home entertainment market place are a stand-alone DVD edition, a Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack version and a 3D/2D Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack SKU.   The Blu-ray selections also include UltraViolet.

Do you think movie-goers were ready for another Jurassic Park film?   Was 14 years too long of a gap?   Who knows, but with the second highest box office gross since the arrival of the DVD format (Avatar still clings to the number one spot) the answer to the first question is a resounding YES!   

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
As to the long gap, well it took some time for the world to recover from the T-Rex rampage of the third installment and for the corporate mucky-mucks to rebuild the park (so a gap of over a decade in the storyline makes some sense).   

There were some nice touches to the overall story arc that also took a bit of time to develop (you don’t just do this overnight) — the Velociraptors went from villain to quasi-hero thanks to Owen’s work (Chris Pratt) — those kill and eat instincts still kick in from time to time —  T-Rex had a redemption moment and B.D. Wong’s character — Dr. Henry Wu — has evolved from the first film in a not-so-nice way.   

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyAnd, with that kind of box office coin, we only have to wait until the summer of 2018 for the next dinosaur encounter — what new wonders will they cook up between now and then?

As to bonus goodies for Jurassic World, the DVD SKU includes deleted scenes and two featurettes — “Chris & Colin Take on the World” and “Dinosaurs Roam Once Again” — which are common to the Blu-ray editions as well.

Exclusive to the both Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack product offerings are “Welcome to Jurassic World,” “Innovation Center Tour with Chris Pratt,” “Jurassic World: All-Access Pass” and “Jurassic’s Closest Shaves.”

Well Go U.S.A. Places DVD Editions Of Filmmaker Andrew Lau's The Avenging Fist And Director Ching Siu-Tung’s The Raid For Delivery On Oct. 13

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
With its heavy hitters already in place — DVD and Blu-ray editions of Black Coal, Thin Ice on Sept. 29 and Northern Limit Line on Oct. 20 — Well Go USA moved this past week to fill in its DVD release calendar with two Cantonese-language action thrillers that are slated for delivery on Oct. 13.

Sammo Hung stars in filmmaker Andrew Lau’s nifty blend of sci-fi and martial arts, The Avenging Fist, and director Ching Siu-Tung’s ‘30s-era espionage battle between Chinese rebels and the Japanese invaders — involving poison gas — is played out in The Raid.

Both of these DVD-only presentations are priced at just $14.98.  

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment To Release Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack And DVD Editions Of Magic Mike XXL On Oct. 6

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Was there a burning desire for a sequel to Magic Mike?   Probably not.  But, it did take in $113.7 million in its theatrical run during the summer of 2012, it is the sort of film that can be made on the cheap (by “Hollywood” studio standards) and it can be slotted in just about anywhere.

The cheap part and the ability to “program” it during minor soft spots in the summer release calendar are the important factors in Warner’s decision making process.  Thus, former AD-turn-producer Gregory Jacobs got the greenlight to direct the sequel, Magic Mike XXL (he also produced the original) and the result was a tasty $65.6 million in ticket sales (reported budget was $12 million).

This past week Warner Bros. Home Entertainment announced that this summer “programmer” will be making its DVD and Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack debut on Oct. 6.   The ARR for that date is an industry standard 116 days.

Plot?   Don’t worry about plot.  Channing Tatum is back and that’s all that counts.
Bonus features include a pair of featurettes — “The Moves of Magic Mike XXL” and “Georgia.”

20th Century-Fox Home Entertainment Counter-Programs With DVD And Blu-ray Dates Filmmaker Alfonso Gomez-Rejon’s For Me And Earl And The Dying Girl And Director Jake Schreier’s Paper Towns In October

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
20th Century-Fox Home Entertainment announced a pair of summer theatrical “counter programming” releases this past week that will be making their way to both DVD and Blu-ray during the post-Labor Day timeframe.

Not everything released during the prime summer season has to be loud and loaded with CGI effects.   There can be plenty of room for films that target other audiences and both Paper Towns and Me and Earl and the Dying Girl are excellent examples.

Filmmaker Alfonso Gomez-Rejon’s only other feature film was a remake last year of The Town That Dreaded Sundown, so it was hard to imagine what the end result would be for a film adaptation of writer Jesse Andrews’ debut best-selling novel, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl.   They are polar opposites.

The end result is a stunner, especially for an indie film that opened at Sundance in January of this year, where it won both the Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award (and many more during its subsequent festival run).   20th Century-Fox quickly (and wisely) snatched it up for theatrical and home entertainment.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Now “counter programming” during a busy release period only goes so far.   Screens and seats are at a premium between Memorial Day and Labor Day and unless a film is selling out Friday and Saturday nights on the opening weekend, it is quickly shuffled off to those quaint 100 seat arenas at the local multiplex and then out the door shortly thereafter.   Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, despite being one of the best films thus far of 2015, opened on the same day theatrically as Jurassic World … that was the kiss of death.   

Fox tried to platform its release (a few screens, then a few more, etc.) in the hope that word-of-mouth would spread and the film would become a true “sleeper.”   A spring release or a fall release might have worked, but against Jurassic World and in the teeth of the summer blockbuster blitz it turned out to be a fool’s errand.   Ticket sales stand at a lackluster $6.7 million.
DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey

So it is DVD and Blu-ray to the rescue on Oct. 6.   The ARR for that street date works out to 116 days.

One other note, the film opened in June, makes it to home entertainment in early October and that’s the end of it, right?    The members of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (Oscar, Oscar) would be wise to give this “indie” a second look come the award’s season.

Greg (Thomas Mann — It’s Kind of a Funny Story, Project X, Welcome to Me, etc.) is a self-aware high school senior who, by some standards, would be viewed as a slacker.  Actually, he’s just bored with the high school scene and is ready to get it behind him — for what, well that’s question.   He hasn’t given that much thought.

He hangs out with his buddy (er, “co-worker”) Earl (newcomer RJ Cyler) — they’ve made short parody films together over the years.   The films are awful, but they are important to the overall story arc.   His parents (played by Connie Britton and Nick Offerman) are cartoonishly weird and sort of set the mood for the film in general.  Which, as mentioned, is a “stunner.”   A total delight!

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyRounding out the cast are Rachel (Olivia Cooke — as Emma in the Bates Motel television series, plus such films as Ouija, The Signal and The Quiet Ones), a childhood “acquaintance,” who is also a senior and the “dying girl” (leukemia) and Madison (Katherine Hughes), who is friends with Greg and helps move the story along. 

As to bonus goodies, common to both the DVD and Blu-ray SKUs are commentary by producer/director Alfonso Gomez-Rejon, the short titled “Abstract: Movie for Rachel” and deleted scenes (with optional commentary).   Exclusive to the Blu-ray is the featurette, “This is Where You Learn How The Movie Was Made” and video session with Martin Scorsese and Alfonso Gomez-Rejon.

The other “counter programming” film on the new release docket this week is director Jake Schreier’s Paper Towns, which will be getting a DVD and Blu-ray push on Oct. 20.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyThis is a studio production, also with a high school theme (adapted from John Green’s novel of the same name, which came before his blockbuster adaptation, The Fault in Our Stars) and it opened wide (a little of 3,000 screens) as opposed to the “platform” run of Me and Earl and the Dying Girl.   Paper Towns continues to play theatrically, with ticket sales thus far standing at $31.1 million.

The ARR for the Oct. 20 release date works out to a swift-to-market 88 days.

As with Greg, Quentin (Nat Wolff — The Fault in Our Stars, Behaving Badly, etc.) is also senior in high school.   In any other story he would be “wallpaper,” you know, the kid passing by the camera in the obligatory high school hallway or cafeteria scene.   The only thing that makes Quentin important in Paper Towns is that he lives across the street from the “shiny object” by the name of Margo (Cara Delevingne — The Face of an Angel), a beauty that is well outside the league of a “wallpaper” high school student.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
One evening she climbs through his bedroom window in order to recruit him in helping her with a series of revenge pranks on her cheating boyfriend and others who were involved or knew of the betrayal.  It’s a night of fun and excitement, especially for Quentin who gets to be close to Margo.   She then abruptly vanishes.  

With help of his nerdy “wallpaper” friends, he goes in search of her and discovers a couple of important life-lessons in the process.   It’s a fun road trip, with a twist.

Bonus features include commentary with director Jake Schreier (Robot and Frank) and author John Green and five featurettes, including “Memorable Moments” and “Road Trips.”
Exclusive to the Blu-ray edition are four deleted scenes (with optional commentary), a gag reel, an alternate scene and a making-of featurette.

Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainmnet Picks Oct. 13 As The Street Date For DVD And Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Editions Of Director Brad Bird's Tomorrowland

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment’s summer mega-budget box office flop, Tomorrowland, will be released as DVD and Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack editions on Oct. 13.   

The ARR is 144 days and ticket sales were a disappointing $93.1 million.

Directed by Brad Bird (who also co-wrote and co-produced), the film connects a magnificent visual effects feast with what turns out to be a muddled storyline and although entertaining, Tomorrowland ultimately fails to connect.

Bonus features include the animated short “The Origins of Plus Ultra,” a quartet of featurettes, eight deleted scenes and a three-part production diary from filmmaker Brad Bird.