Monday, November 30, 2015

Indican Pictures Announces A Dec. 8 DVD Release Date For Writer/Director Daniel Columbie’s Amidst the Devil’s Wings

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Indican Pictures will bring writer/director Daniel Columbie’s revenge thriller, Amidst the Devil’s Wings, to the DVD market place on Dec. 8.

Set against the backdrop of sensual Miami, we meet Manuel Delavida (Carlos Guerrero — Promises, Banshee, etc.), businessman, husband and father of two young children.   From all outward appearances he’s a good and descent human being … that’s about to change.

When his wealthy father, Enrique (Enrique Herrera) is murdered, Manuel is devastated and, like any son, wants the killer or killers brought to justice.   It seems simple enough, but double-dealing politicians, Colombian drug cartels, professional hitmen — it’s just business, nothing personal — and more are the forces that are aligned against him.

When he realizes that he will get no justice through “normal” channels, his hugs his kids, kisses his wife — “I’ll be back soon” — and sets out on a brutal mission of revenge.   Like peeling back the layers of an onion, one lowlife thug leads to another … and another.   Up the food chain he goes, with all indications that well-connected “businessman” John Casternoble (Alex Teixeira) is the individual who ordered the hit.
DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey

In a quote that is more than apropos  — often contributed to Confucius — “Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves” … just killing his way to Casternoble quickly becomes a fool’s errand, as corruption is a weapon that is used to disguise both the evil and the good.  Who can he trust?  Perhaps, no one … and everything that Manuel holds dear is suddenly in jeopardy.

Amidst the Devil’s Wings is a slick thriller, with production values that far exceed its indie budget.   

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey

VCI Entertainment To Release A Blu-ray Edition Of Writer/Director Bob Clark's Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things On Feb. 23

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
VCI Entertainment has tabbed Feb. 23 for a Blu-ray edition of writer/director Bob Clark’s (aka: Benjamin Clark — Black Christmas, A Christmas Story, Porky’s, etc.) 1972 dead-shall-rise indie horror gem, Children Shouldn’t Play With Dead Things.

Alan Ormsby stars as Alan (he also co-wrote the script), the over-the-top leader of a would-be thespian troupe looking for something fun — and deranged — to do.   We should mention that it is Alan who is looking for “something fun,” as the rest of his entourage simply are along for the ride — he’s a bully and you either go along with Alan’s musings or leave the troupe (which, as things develop, would be a blessing).

Since this is a horror film — a horror film that has over the years achieved a certain degree of cult status — we know that Alan’s much put-upon acting troupe (with includes his wife Anya Ormsby) are nothing more than the “victim pool.”   He’s going to raise the dead — in this case, Orville Dunworth (Seth Sklarey) — and they, his actors, are going to be his audience whether they like it or not.   It’s all great fun for him!

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
His little soiree out to the creepy island is actually an elaborate joke (pay close attention to the opening credit sequence), but for Alan it’s a joke gone too far as things go horribly wrong and the dead actually do rise and a zombie plague is upon them! 

Bonus features include commentary from Alan Ormsby and actors Jane Daly and Anya Cronin, the featurette titled “Memories of Bob Clark,” a video session with Bob Clark’s long-time film collaborator, Ken Goch, that is titled “Confessions of a Grave Digger” (Goch set up the graveyard for the film) and a pair of music videos from The Deadthings — “Dead Girls Don’t Say No” and “Cemetery Mary.”

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey

Wild Eye Releasing Tabs Feb. 23 For The DVD Debut Of Director Mark Polonia's Bigfoot Vs. Zombies

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Wild Eye Releasing announced this past week that prolific filmmaker Mark Polonia’s mixed horror/sci-fi genre thriller, Bigfoot vs. Zombies, will be making its domestic DVD debut on Feb. 23.

You have zombie movies released on a monthly basis, so nothing new with that.  And tales of bigfoot, sasquatch or the legendary yeti creatures of the Himalayas have been popular since the 1950s — director W. Lee Wilder’s 1954 film production of The Snow Creature, producer/director Jerry Warren’s 1956 “treasure,” Man Beast and director Val Guest’s Hammer Films’ opus The Abominable Snowman (1957) are just some of the examples — so nothing new with that either.

But filmmaker Mark Polonia, who took full advantage of the hype surrounding Jurassic World with his own dinosaur-rampage thriller this past summer, Jurassic Prey (released on DVD from Wild Eye Releasing in June), is ready and willing to mash the two — zombies and bigfoot, sasquatch or yetis — together!

In the forest lurks the usually shy creature known as Bigfoot, a man-like beast who loves his solitude and makes every effort to steer clear of hikers, campers and the like.   That solitude is about to come to a crashing end!

It begins when a local scientific research firm has some chemical waste, which is begin transported for disposal, dumped — by accident — and the nearby groundwater is contaminated.   Residents partaking of the tainted water are transformed into flesh-craving zombies.
DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey

A handful of survivors soon find themselves locked in a pitched battle with their former neighbors and, well, you can see where that’s going.   Into the woods this battle spills and the only thing standing between a zombie-plague breaking-out of this relatively isolated area is none other than Bigfoot!  

Bigfoot vs. Zombies, the creature that they’ve all shunned, is now the only force standing between them and the zombie Armageddon!   Mark Polonia might just be onto something here!!

Arrow Video Targets Feb. 9 For A Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Edition Of Pam Grier's Sheba, Baby

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Arrow Video, with domestic sales and distribution expertise provided by MVD Entertainment Group, announced this past week that 1970’s blaxploitation queen, Pam Grier, will be get the royal hi-def treatment on Feb. 9 with the Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack release of director William Girdler’s Sheba, Baby.

She was the revenge-seeking Coffy in cult director Jack Hill’s summer of 1973 hit film of the same name.  She teamed with Hill the following year for Foxy Brown, a film that made her a screen sensation (a star in own right) and then in 1975 she starred as private detective, Sheba Shayne, in Sheba, Baby.   

She was — and for that matter, still is — the complete on-screen package for exploitation and action films.  Sexy, talented and always ready to rumble, you absolutely believe that’s she’s the real deal. 

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
So when her father is given the shakedown treatment by the local mob, Sheba is lickety-split on a plane and we can honestly say that Louisville will never be the same.   Teaming with her dad’s partner (and her former love interest), Brick Williams (Austin Stoker — who would also rise to star status after John Carpenter’s 1976 release of Assault on Precinct 13, plus as Virgil in Roots), Sheba takes on the local mob (run by D'Urville Martin) and the higher ups, controlled by a sinister figured named “Shark” (Dick Merrifield), and by end credits they are all TOAST!!!

Bonus features for Sheba, Baby include commentary by screenwriter and producer David Sheldon (Grizzly, Day of the Animals, The Manitou, etc.), who is joined by film critic Nathaniel Thompson, newly prepared video session with Sheldon and the featurette titled “Pam Grier: The AIP Years.”

MVD Entertainment Group Preps A 3D Blu-ray Edition Of Comin' At Ya! For Delivery To Fans On Jan. 26

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
For years, Filmways served-up a steady stream of family-friendly sitcoms … stuff like Mister Ed, Petticoat Junction, The Beverly Hillbillies and Green Acres, even The Addams Family was one of their productions.   

Things changed during the 1970s and they began producing more and more films — some were really good ones, including the likes of Save the Tiger, Dressed to Kill and Blow Out, but management made the fatal mistake of buying the assets of American International Pictures (AIP) long after the golden years of Nicholson and Arkoff.

Filmways began to hemorrhage money, the end drew near and it was during this “death throe” financial spiral of 1981/82 that the company picked up for domestic distribution Italian filmmaker Ferdinando Baldi’s Comin’ at Ya!, a 3D Spaghetti Western starring Tony Anthony.   

They dubbed it in English and released it theatrically during the Thanksgiving period of 1981 … it did a fair amount of business and then, like Filmways, it disappeared.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeyWord is out that MVD Entertainment Group has picked Jan. 26 as the release date for a “frame by frame digital conversion of the polarized over-and-under format of the original print into RealD digital format” (that’s quite a mouthful), which is basically saying that a restored Blu-ray edition of Comin’ at Ya! will be available on Jan. 26 for fans to enjoy once again!  

It will be presented in both 3D and 2D on the same SKU.

Hotel Transylvania 2 Gets A Jan. 12 Release Date From Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment will wait until 2016 to release director Genndy Tartakovsky’s animated “monster” blockbuster, Hotel Transylvania 2.    

Revealed this past week that a three-SKU helping of Drac (voiced by Adam Sandler), his pals (voiced by Kevin James), Steve Buscemi, David Spade, etc.), the next generation (voiced by Selena Gomez and Andy Samberg) and a surprise guest (the voice talents of Mel Brooks) will be ready for fans to enjoy on Jan. 12.

The ARR comes in at 109 days and domestic ticket sales were a tasty $166.4 million (the original pulled in $148.3 million back in 2012 — with those numbers expect a third installment in 2018).

Planned for the home entertainment market are a stand-alone DVD edition and two Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack SKUs — one with and one without a 3D viewing option (the premium for 3D is seven bucks).   All three selections will include UltraViolet.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Bonus features include two separate commentary options — one with director Genndy Tartakovsky (Hotel Transylvania, plus Emmy-winner for Star Wars: Clone Wars TV series) and the second featuring co-writers Adam Sandler and Robert Smigel, who are joined by producer Allen Covert — deleted scenes, a sing-along and at least four featurettes.  There is also the music video titled “I'm In Love With A Monster” from Fifth Harmony.

Also getting an early 2016 street date — also as a three-SKU product array — is director Robert Zemeckis’ The Walk, a dramatic retelling of Philippe Petit’s Aug. 7, 1974 high-wire walk between the two towers of the World Trade Center.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph TribbeySlated for Jan. 5, the ARR for The Walk is a swift-to-market 95 days and ticket sales were a disappointing $10.1 million (a Zemeckis film, in 3D no less, with a $30 million-plus production budget).

In 2008 documentary filmmaker James Marsh delivered Man on Wire, which chronicled Petit’s elaborate high-wire stunt (if you haven’t seen it, you might want to take a look before catching Zemeckis’ The Walk).

Planned for release are a DVD edition and two Blu-ray SKUs — yes, one with and one without a 3D viewing option (the premium is six dollars).

Bonus features include deleted scenes and a trio of featurettes — “Pillars of Support,” “First Steps” and “The Amazing Walk.”