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Do The Right Thing – The Criterion Collection (Blu-ray Review)

This year, Academy Award-winning writer-director Spike Lee’s 1989 modern classic, Do the Right Thing celebrated its 30th anniversary. With all the acclaim received by the prolific filmmaker just recently for his Oscar-winning film BlacKkKlansman, it’s incredible to look back at one of his earliest films and not only see how far Lee has come but to what degree things have changed. Having previously been released by the Criterion Collection on LaserDisc and DVD, the film has finally received its Blu-ray upgrade. This fantastic package features both a stunning technical presentation, as well as a great film diving into racial tension on a hot summer day.

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All About Eve, Cold War & More Coming to The Criterion Collection November 2019

This November, the Criterion Collection will celebrate the incomparable Bette Davis, one of Hollywood’s greatest stars, with two releases that demonstrate her extraordinary range. The swoon-inducing melodrama Now, Voyager, appearing on Blu-ray for the first time, finds her at the height of her reign as the queen of the women’s picture. Then All About Eve, Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s beloved theater-world satire, features Davis in an acid-tongued comeback performance, a turn that now defines her legacy. Also coming in November: Paweł Pawlikowski’s sweeping, Oscar-nominated Cold War, a tumultuous, passionate love story that traverses the Iron Curtain, debuts on home video. Béatrice Dalle stars in Betty Blue, Jean-Jacques Beineix’s intoxicating tale of amour fou, appearing in its three-hour director’s cut. And Greg Mottola’s irresistible comedy The Daytrippers – starring Hope Davis, Parker Posey, Anne Meara, Liev Schreiber, and Stanley Tucci – will appear in a new 4K restoration.

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GALAXY QUEST Celebrates 20th Anniversary With Limited Edition Blu-ray Steelbook Arriving 9/17

Personally, this is my favorite “Star Trek” movie, and now it has something special for all. As it states: By Grabthar’s hammer, the intrepid crew of the NSEA Protector is back to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the uproarious classic GALAXY QUEST, arriving in our solar system September 17, 2019, in a Limited Collector’s Edition Blu-ray Steelbook exclusively at Best Buy from Paramount Home Entertainment. Featuring an out-of-this-world all-star cast including Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, Tony Shalhoub, Sam Rockwell, Enrico Colantoni, Daryl Mitchell and Justin Long, this rollicking send-up of sci-fi fanaticism is as funny today as it was when it premiered in theaters 20 years ago.

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All Hail the King – GODZILLA: THE SHŌWA ERA FILMS, 1954-1975, Criterion Edition #1000, Available October 29, 2019

This October, Criterion celebrates the arrival of spine number 1000, a Blu-ray collector’s set fit for the granddaddy of all movie monsters. This landmark edition gathers for the first time all the Godzilla films from Japan’s Showa era: fifteen kaiju rampages, presented in high-definition digital transfers and accompanied by a slew of supplemental material, including a giant deluxe hardcover book with notes on each film and new illustrations from sixteen artists, new and archival interviews with cast and crew members, and much, much more! It’s a colossal set, and Criterion would have it no other way for their 1000th release.

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Jim Jarmusch’s THE DEAD DON’T DIE Rises on Digital 9/3 and on Blu-ray 9/10

A quiet town finds itself under attack from the undead with the greatest zombie cast ever disassembled in the comedy, THE DEAD DON’T DIE, arriving on Digital on September 3, 2019 and on Blu-rayTM, DVD and On Demand on September 10, 2019 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. Showcasing exclusive bonus features not seen in theaters including insight from the cast and filmmakers, as well as a closer look at the making of the film that takes fans deeper into this “giddy apocalypse with no way out” (Richard Brody, The New Yorker). Starring Academy Award®† winner Bill Murray (Olive Kitteridge, Lost in Translation, Ghostbusters), Adam Driver (Star Wars Sequel Trilogy, BlacKkKlansman) and Chloë Sevigny (“The Act,” Boys Don’t Cry), THE DEAD DON’T DIE is a “hilariously fun” (Adam Patterson, Film Pulse) and irreverent film unlike any you’ve seen before.

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Olivia Wilde Makes Her Directorial Debut in the Fresh Comedy BOOKSMART on Blu-ray 9/3

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment presents BOOKSMART, arriving on Digital August 20 and Blu-ray and DVD September 3. In this fresh, unfiltered modern comedy, best friends and academic overachievers Amy (Kaitlyn Dever) and Molly (Beanie Feldstein) realize they’ve missed out on pretty much all fun during high school. So, on the eve of graduation, they decide to make up for lost time with one wild adventure in this hilarious coming-of-age story about the meaningful bonds we create, also starring Lisa Kudrow, Will Forte and Jason Sudeikis. The film was a huge hit with critics and the audiences who saw it. Time to see it for yourself.

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Missing Link (Blu-ray Review)

At the time of this writing, a CG remake of The Lion King is on its way to becoming one of the biggest films of the year, while another acclaimed, original Laika feature came and went in theaters. It’s a real shame, as Laika is great with combining dry humor and visual wonder. The stop-motion animation studio has produced films about alternate dimensions, zombies, underground creatures, and Japanese mysticism, which all build fantastical worlds around relatable characters who accept and move along with these wild developments. Missing Link is not too different, as it even opens with a well-dressed explorer passively taking on the Loch Ness Monster. Moreover, once the film gets in gear, it becomes a road trip movie about unlikely friends taking on adventures as they come. There’s silliness to be found, but the attitude feels so distinct for the studio. And yet, audiences just aren’t getting the push needed to see these movies in theaters. Well, now Missing Link is on Blu-ray.

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Alita: Battle Angel (Blu-ray Review)

Before Avatar, I had heard plenty about producer James Cameron’s plan to direct Alita: Battle Angel. After two decades, the film finally arrived in theaters, but in the hands of another. Robert Rodriguez, a filmmaker with plenty in common with Cameron, stepped into big-budget territory for his first time, delivering spectacle deserving of a big-screen viewing experience. Even when the film came up lacking in the narrative department, enough work was on display to show how Alita plays as manga come to life in bold and ambitious ways. The film was a modest hit at the box office, and whether or not a sequel ever comes to fruition, this Blu-ray release comes packed with extras in support of the excellent technical presentation.

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BATMAN BEYOND: The Complete Series Limited Edition Arrives This October On Blu-ray

BURBANK, CA (July 18, 2019) – Batman Beyond, the landmark animated television series that illuminated the imagination of a new generation of Batman fans with its creation of an altogether new hero, is celebrating its 20th anniversary – and you get the gift! Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has remastered the heralded series for its first-ever presentation on Blu-ray™ in the all-encompassing Batman Beyond: The Complete Animated Series Limited Editionarriving on Digital starting October 15, 2019 and in a stunning box set on October 29, 2019. The extraordinary Batman Beyond: The Complete Animated Series Limited Edition package features approximately 1,500 minutes of entertainment spread over four Blu-ray™ discs, plus the two bonus discs of enhanced content, and a newly-remastered Blu-ray presentation of Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker. Continue on to learn even more about this packed set.

 

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Muhammad Ali, Matewan & More Coming to The Criterion Collection October 2019

Spine number 1000 will be announced next week, but for now, this October, John Sayles’s galvanizing labor saga Matewan–starring Chris Cooper, James Earl Jones, David Strathairn, and Mary McDonnell–will join the Criterion Collection in a new restoration. When We Were Kings, the indelible portrait of Muhammad Ali’s late-career journey to Africa for the Rumble in the Jungle will appear in an edition featuring Soul Power, a documentary on the all-star concert that accompanied the fight. Häxan, Benjamin Christensen’s occult history of witchcraft, one of the most bizarre and captivating films of the silent era, will appear on Blu-ray in a new restoration, just in time for Halloween. And three mesmerizing silent-film classics by Josef von Sternberg–UnderworldThe Last Command, and The Docks of New York–will make their Blu-ray debuts in a collector’s set.

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‘X-Men: Dark Phoenix’ Arrives with a Flare on Blu-ray 9/17

Because you probably missed it in theaters… Add X-MEN: DARK PHOENIX to your digital collection on Movies Anywhere September 3 and buy it on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, and DVD September 17. Sophie Turner, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender and Jennifer Lawrence fire up an all-star cast in this spectacular culmination of the X-Men saga! During a rescue mission in space, Jean Grey (Turner) is transformed into the infinitely powerful and dangerous DARK PHOENIX. As Jean spirals out of control, the X-Men must unite to face their most devastating enemy yet — one of their own. The home entertainment release comes packed with hours of extensive special features and behind-the-scenes insights from Simon Kinberg and Hutch Parker delving into everything it took to bring X-MEN: DARK PHOENIX to the big screen.

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Transit (Blu-ray Review)

What if Casablanca was turned into an existential vision rubbing up against modern times? Transit is a tale presenting such an idea. Adapted from a 1944 novel by Anna Seghers, German director Christian Petzold (Phoenix) has crafted an intriguing story that is both urgent and timeless in its presentation of displaced people contending with their status in society. At the core of it, we follow a man in search of his own identity after taking one from another. Combining elements of Hitchcock, film noir, romance, and Kafkaesque struggles, Transit is a compelling drama with a setup that alternates time enough to make it, oddly, one of 2019’s best science fiction films. Now, Transit has arrived on Blu-ray with a strong technical presentation and enough extra material to round out the whole package quite nicely.

 

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THE ADDAMS FAMILY & ADDAMS FAMILY VALUES Arrive on Blu-ray In 2-Movie Collection October 1st

This is some exciting, creepy, kooky news! Back in the 90s, Barry Sonnenfeld began an impressive 4-film run with The Addams Family and followed it up with one of the best comedy sequels of all time, The Addams Family Values (he followed that up with Get Shorty and Men in Black). Now both films are coming to Blu-ray (Values for the very first time), just in time for the new animated film hitting theaters this fall. There’s little reason not to be excited about these very enjoyable, well-cast, and visually dazzling films. Read on to learn more about these upcoming releases, which will be arriving on Blu-ray on October 1.

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Lubitsch, Waters, Chaplin & More Coming to The Criterion Collection September 2019

This September, John Waters’ first studio picture, Polyester, the trash maestro’s delirious take on the Douglas Sirk-style melodrama, will appear in an edition complete with a scratch-and-sniff Odorama card. Jennifer Jones stars in the topsy-turvy comedy Cluny Brown, the final film by Ernst Lubitsch, long unavailable on home video. Ritwik Ghatak’s family tragedy The Cloud-Capped Star, a masterpiece of Bengali cinema, will appear on Blu-ray for the first time. Bill Forsyth’s offbeat small-town fable Local Hero, one of the most beloved Scottish films of all time, will arrive in a new 2K digital restoration. Charlie Chaplin pulls off an outrageous high-wire act in The Circus, featuring some of the most uproarious pratfalls and audacious stunts of his legendary career. And that’s not all: Marco Bellocchio’s provocative debut film, Fists in the Pocket, will make its Blu-ray debut in a new 4K restoration.

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Swing Time – The Criterion Collection (Blu-ray Review)

Who’s ready to put on a show? Musical comedies were huge in the 1930s, and many studios were happy to deliver. One of the highlights of this era were the many films starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, with Swing Time being looked as possibly the best of their collaborations. Winner of an Oscar for Best Original Song (for “The Way You Look Tonight”), the film has often been looked at as one of the best cinema has had to offer, and has even been entered into the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress. Now the Criterion Collection has gone the extra mile in providing a brand-new digital restoration of the film, with plenty of terrific supplements to go with it.

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Bring Home the Stop-Motion Adventure, MISSING LINK arriving on Blu-ray this July

Based on a review from Aaron Neuwirth featured in the ads, I have it on good authority that this movie is, “hilarious,” but check out this press release concerning Missing Link, arriving on Blu-ray July 23. Hugh Jackman, Zoe Saldana and Zach Galifianakis lead an all-star voice cast in this globetrotting adventure from LAIKA, the makers of Coraline and Kubo and the Two Strings. Hugh Jackman is Sir Lionel Frost, a brave and dashing adventurer who considers himself to be the world’s foremost investigator of myths and monsters. The trouble is no one else seems to agree. Zach Galifianakis is Mr. Link. As species go, he’s as endangered as they get; he’s possibly the last of his kind, he’s lonely, and he believes that Sir Lionel is the one man alive who can help him. Along with the independent and resourceful Adelina Fortnight (Zoe Saldana), who possesses the only known map to the group’s secret destination, the unlikely trio embarks on a riotous rollercoaster ride of a journey to seek out Link’s distant relatives in the fabled valley of Shangri-La.

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Us (Blu-ray Review)

After finding unquestionable success with Get Out, Jordan Peele is back with Us. As writer, director, and producer, Peele is in full control here, and he has used his power as a filmmaker to deliver another fresh, scary, and darkly humorous film. More than simple descriptors, however, is seeing how Us moves into territory that has very little in common with Peele’s previous film. Rather than deliver another contained social thriller speaking to the ills of race relations taken to an extreme, here is an expansive look at the crumbling of the American experience made possible by the darker sides of the human condition. After earning rave reviews and a hefty amount of money at the box office, Us now arrives on Blu-ray with a nice set of extras to help a viewer explore the film even further.

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Godzilla Ranking: The Millennium Era (1999-2004)

Legendary Pictures’ MonsterVerse expands this Summer with Godzilla: Kong of the Monsters. As a huge Godzilla fan, I’ve been happy to put together some fun posts about the classic Kaiju franchise. Enjoy some fun facts here, but this post for Why So Blu continues what I started with my Heisei era ranking. Now, I have a look back at Godzilla’s Millennium period, which ran from the late 90s to the mid-2000s. Get ready for more rankings, trivia, and killer poster art.

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