Monday, May 9, 2016

Scream Queen Legend Debbie Rochon Makes Her Directorial Debut With Wild Eye Releasing's July 12 DVD Release Of Model Hunger

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Model Hunger, Debbie Rochon, Ralph Tribbey
When you speak of “names” in the film business certain things leap to mind.   For example, you say the name Tom Cruise and the word “bankable” is a pretty good term to describe him — some might say “Scientology” — but “bankable” is more apropos to the discussion of movies.

Meryl Streep and “Oscar” spring to mind — 19 nominations — and you know in your heart of hearts that she’s not done yet.  OK, what about Kevin Bacon?   It’s “six degrees,” right?
See how this word association game goes.   For genre fans, the name Debbie Rochon is an easy one, “Scream Queen.”  

While the aforementioned Cruise, Streep and Bacon star in the larger budget films, Debbie Rochon has made a career in the indie world (with actually more film credits than Cruise, Streep and Bacon combined) and that has earned her the adoration of her legions of fans and the respect of those who have worked with her.

When word arrived this past week from Wild Eye Releasing that Debbie Rochon’s debut as a film director, Model Hunger, will be making its DVD debut on July 12, it was one of those magical moments.  If you are a fan of her work — and who isn’t — that sort of news is “stop the presses news.”   It’s a big deal!

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Model Hunger, Debbie Rochon, Ralph TribbeyFrom start to finish she has been involved in this project for something like four years.   It’s a true indie film, with the micro budget and all that goes with it.   But, Model Hunger has not been rushed to market.   

It has an interesting, multi-layer script (from James Morgart (Won Ton Baby!), a stunning cast that includes the likes of Lynn Lowry (a cult favorite from the 1970s — The Crazies, They Came From Within) and fellow Scream Queens Tiffany Shepis (Scarecrow, The Frankenstein Syndrome, Sharknado 2: The Second One, etc.) and Suzi Lorraine (Dry Spell, House of Manson, Destined to Be Ingested, etc.), an original soundtrack from Harry Manfredini and technical contributions that belie the film’s limited shooting budget.

The story is terrific.   Lynn Lowry plays Ginny Reilly, a former fashion model who got too old, who got too “heavy” (that means she put on five pounds) and was banished from a world that gave her both fame and meaning.   She snapped.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Model Hunger, Debbie Rochon, Ralph Tribbey
She’s now a serial killer, bitter, but sweet and innocent enough to trap skinny girls like a bright light on the back porch attracts bugs.   

She has intellectual conversations with her victims, they tell her that they think they are fat, not as pretty as they could be … and she helps them out.   Under her knife that extra weight just melts away.

Meanwhile, in an homage to a certain 1954 Hitchcock thriller, Debbie and Sal Lombardo are her new neighbors and Debbie (played by none other than Tiffany Shepis) is convinced that the nice lady next door is not what she appears to be.   Young women go in her front door … and never come out.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Model Hunger, Debbie Rochon, Ralph TribbeyThe third element of this lurid tale is the fascination of the local community with an access cable show by the name of “Suzi’s Secret” (hosted by Suzi Lorraine) and featuring a dead ringer for John Water’s favorite actress, Divine (played by the luscious Babette Bombshell).   It’s reality TV from a very unreal world and is chilling in its own right; addictive.

All three of these diverse elements come together in Model Hunger to give genre fans what they crave.   Something wholly original, but yet bloody familiar … indeed, Ginny Reilly and Norman Bates could be relatives; blood relatives!!  

Be sure to circle July 12 on your must-see viewing calendar and pick up your very own DVD edition of Model Hunger; it’s a keeper!  

Vinegar Syndrome Adds Two New Peekarama Double-Feature DVDs To Its Library On May 31

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Vinegar Syndrome has selected May 31 as the street date for two new additions to its popular “Peekarama” DVD series.

The latest in the series of vintage adult feature films includes two from the golden era (when film, not tape was the source material) and both films are from director Howard Ziehm (aka: Harry Hopper).

Harlot (1971), starring Fran Spector and Patty Alexon arrives as a newly-minted 2K restoration from original films and is presented for the first time uncut.   The shortened version (running about 47 minutes) played theatrically during the spring of 1971 and viewers always felt that the final act (which is actually quite graphic) was missing connecting plot elements.    

That mystery — for connoisseurs — might now be solved as Vinegar Syndrome is reporting that their presentation of Harlot clocks in at 64 minutes (that’s roughly an entire film reel).

Bonus features with Harlot include a commentary track provided by filmmaker Howard Ziehm.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Ralph Tribbey
Teamed with Harlot in this Peekarama double feature is Tijuana Blue (1972), a XXX mix involving drug running and the sleaziest of border town hookers.

The second Peekarama double feature heading home on May 31 from Vinegar Syndrome are new 2K restorations (from original film negatives) showcasing the work of Richard Mailer. 

Physical Attraction, released theatrically in 1984, is one of those crossover films from the 1980s.   XXX in nature with an actual coherent plot — cut out the adult sex and the film could actually play as an MOW.  

Legendary adult film star Shanna McCullough stars as Bobbi, a hooker with a desire to get out of the business.   When an Olympic coach named Ed (David Cannon) sees potential in her athletic ability her opportunity to shine is at hand.

Classical Romance, also released in 1984, focuses on a piano man named Eric (Paul Thomas), who becomes enamored with such women as Helen (Desiree Lane), Judy (Renee Summers) and Laura (Jacqueline Lorians) and must decide whether to enjoy the 80’s equivalent of “Fifty Shades of Grey” or focus on his career.   Tough choice!

Paramount Home Media Targets July 12 For The DVD Release Of Nickelodeon's Blaze and the Monster Machines: Fired Up!

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Blaze and the Monster Machines: Fired Up!, Ralph Tribbey
Paramount Home Media announced this past week that Nickelodeon’s popular series, Blaze and the Monster Machines, will be returning to the DVD world on July 12 with the release of Blaze and the Monster Machines: Fired Up!

Blaze, his best buddy A.J. and their friends are back for four fun-filled adventures that involve problem solving and the various Monster Machines (Starla, Crusher, etc.) working together to get the job done!  

As with other releases in this series, expect bonus features that involve child interaction.

Director Michael Madison's Delivered Arrives On DVD This Coming May 24 From Indie Rights

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Delivered, Ralph Tribbey
Indie Rights, with sales and distribution support provided by MVD Entertainment Group, will be director Michael Madison’s nifty neo-noir thriller, Delivered, to the DVD market place on May 24.

Shane (Michael Madison) returns home from his latest tour of duty in Iraq to his widowed mother, Marilyn (Alana Stewart), who has fallen on hard times after the death of his father.   The only possession that she has managed to salvage is his father’s vintage Mustang.   It’s a beauty!

His near-death experiences in Iraq, the death of his father and the sorry state of affairs that he finds his mother in, all pile up … he’s got to do something, but what?

When a buddy of his suggests that there might just be some easy money to be made by working for his uncle, a shifty sort named Sarkis (Ludwig Manukian), he reluctantly decides to give it a go.  A courier, packing a gun and delivering “stuff” to equally shady characters … is there really a future in that?  But what else can he do?   The money is good and he gets to spend hours on the road.  It’s cathartic. 

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Delivered, Ralph Tribbey
As “fate” would have it — while on one his “runs” — he happens upon a thug in the middle of raping a young woman and clobbers him with a baseball bat.   The thug pulls a gun, he hits him again!  The grateful young woman, whose name is Cindy (Jeanette Steiner), shows her appreciation and our boy Shane is hooked.

So let’s pause just a moment and rewind this.   Courier job with a gun, damsel in distress, shady characters and big money changing hands … Shane can’t possibly be being played!  Set up, as they say, "for the big sleep."

If you are a film noir fan, then you already know the answer.   He has got a sweet ride in that classic Mustang, a grateful and very beautiful woman in the passenger seat and danger at every turn … come on, admit it, Delivered is a film “ride” that you’re going to take in a heartbeat.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Delivered, Ralph Tribbey

Hello, My Name Is Doris On DVD And Blu-ray From Sony Pictures Home Entertainment On June 14

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Hello, My Name Is Doris, Ralph Tribbey
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment almost got blind sided again by a certain eager retailer posting street dates before official announcements could be cranked out by the studio.

This “certain retailer” (come on, we all know that it is began taking orders for a June 14 DVD and Blu-ray launch of writer/director Michael Showalter’s feature-length version of filmmaker Laura Terruso’s 2011 short film, Doris & the Intern … which was retitled for the screen as Hello, My Name is Doris.

That order-taking activity was likely spawned by the May 31 window for online digital/HD sales, which was in turn triggered by agreements related to box office performance … and probably pressure from arch rival Netflix.

While Sony Pictures Home Entertainment was slow to respond to the pre-announcement sales activity for both Risen and The 5th Wave, they jumped on this leak quickly with a full-blown press announcement for this delightful Sally Field comedy within hours of that retailer’s order taking activities.

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, Hello, My Name Is Doris, Ralph TribbeyYes, June 14 is the real street date, which yields an ARR of 95 days.   Box office receipts currently stand at $12.8 million.   Normally, that level of box office performance would be considered a “failure,” but Hello, My Name is Doris is not a studio production, but an indie theatrical release (Roadside Attractions) that got its start on the festival circuit (SXSW), which was then followed by a platform theatrical release … a few screens, a few more screens, a jump to nearly 500, another 400 and then back down again.

DVD and Blu-ray will certainly give this intergenerational comedy a much wider audience … and, as a bonus, this wonderful little film showcases Sally Field’s best work in years.
As to bonus goodies, Sony says that there is “filmmaker commentary,” which we assume means director Michael Showalter and co-writer Laura Terruso, an alternate opening, plus deleted and extended scenes.

Universal Studios Home Entertainment Will Release DVD And Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack Editions Of My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 On June 21

DVD & Blu-ray Release Report, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, Ralph Tribbey
Universal Studios Home Entertainment has tabbed June 21 as the street date for director Kirk Jones’ My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2.   Planned are DVD and Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack editions.

The ARR is a swift-to-market 88 days and ticket sales currently stand at $57.3 million.

It’s been 14 years (with some liberal adjustments to the script, time wise) since Toula (Nia Vardalos) and Ian (John Corbett) overcame the comedy traps of the Portokalos family to make that famous walk down the aisle.  Everyone is back for another very unexpected wedding, including Michael Constantine and Lainie Kazan.

Bonus goodies include a gag reel and two featurettes — “My Big Fat Greek Dinner” and “Making The Greekquel.”