Archive for the 'Blu-ray Reviews' Category

Destroyer (Blu-ray Review)

As is usually the case towards the end of any year, Destroyer is a film that got caught in the middle of a pile of 2018 movies all hoping to receive awards consideration. The Annapurna Pictures release was one of a few to underperform as a result, though it did garner a Golden Globe nomination for star Nicole Kidman. Regardless, the film is a solid gritty crime drama, and it is worth a look. Between the strong cast and the very visceral feel of the film, there’s a lot to latch onto for a movie that shows just how strong something can come across thanks to technical effort, even if the story plays into some familiar concepts.

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Police Story / Police Story 2 – The Criterion Collection (Blu-ray Review)

A couple of years before this Criterion Collection release of Police Story and Police Story 2, international martial arts star Jackie Chan received an honorary Academy Award for the impact he has had on cinema. Having been in the business for over 50 years, it’s only right to some of this older and most famous films get the deluxe treatment. It further helps to cement Chan’s cinematic contributions into history, which is pretty great when you can see a couple of gritty (and occasionally quite funny) martial arts flicks sit on the same shelves as classic Hitchcock or Bergman features. Whatever the case may be, read on to hear more about what this release for two entries in Chan’s classic Police Story series has to offer.

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Alien 40th Anniversary (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)

Alien 4K ReviewAlien is a title I have been waiting for on the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray format for some time now.  Ever since we got Prometheus and Alien: Covenant last year I felt we got shortchanged with no Alien release.  But alas, they were strategizing.  It’s the 40th Anniversary of the film.  There was um a purpose for the film’s delay on the 4K disc format.  Alright, I’ll let that fly then.  What it really all boils down to is the fact that I’m ecstatic not only to have this movie in 4K now, but also to be among the first in the US with an advance review.  I’ll do my best to do this one justice and give it some love, but truth be told it really doesn’t need much TLC from me.  It’s a science fiction masterpiece after all.  I could just easily give the feature a 5-doggie score and move along to the audio and video sections, which you’re all here for anyway.  However, I won’t be that reviewer who simply does an unboxing or says the movie is good.  I’ll give you a little bit of expose.  If you’re not interested, well then scroll down 2 screenshots below and check out how things look.  So without further ado… Continue reading ‘Alien 40th Anniversary (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)’


Welcome To Marwen (Blu-ray Review)

Welcome to Marwen Blu-ray ReviewWhere to begin with this film. There are great actors, solid performances, and an engaging based on a true story storyline… Yet why does it seem like a complete and utter mess? Why does the film seem discombobulated, half baked and partially made? Story points open, yet don’t close out…. Welcome to a “Royal Mess” is more like it.  Check out our full Blu-ray review of it which saw Welcome to Marwen hit the format on April 9th. Continue reading ‘Welcome To Marwen (Blu-ray Review)’


The Kid Who Would Be King (Blu-ray Review)

It has become something of a joke to see new cinematic takes on characters such as King Arthur and Robin Hood, and yet studios keep trying and failing to set up new franchises around them. Now, along comes Joe Cornish, director of 2011’s brilliant Attack the Block, with a vision for a kid-centric take on Arthurian legend, and it’s the best interpretation of the property in decades. The Kid Who Would Be King has the spirit and ambition needed to work as a proper film for a young adult audience that adults can also appreciate as well. It did about as bad as expected at the box office, which is a shame, but now families can discover the film at home on Blu-ray.

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The Karate Kid – 35th Anniversary Edition (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)

Karate Kid 4K ReviewThe Karate Kid is one of those films that was almost always a big part of my movie watching as a kid.  I was drawn to the underdog story of Daniel Larusso, who with a great deal of spunk and determination proved himself to be a teenage hero for some.  I was so excited to see this 35thAnniversary Edition announced earlier in the year and when it arrived I was immediately ready to give it a watch!  This time, for me anyway, felt like the first time.  Check out my review of this April 16th release down below. Continue reading ‘The Karate Kid – 35th Anniversary Edition (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)’


Frankenstein 1970 (Blu-ray Review)

The Warner Archive Collection released the 1958 film Frankenstein 1970 on Blu-ray for the first time this past week (street date was April 9th). A futuristic title in its time, the film has become a relic of the past. Notable above many as it boasts the original monster himself in the cast, the legendary horror icon Boris Karloff. With a new transfer, the release is porting over the bonus features (Just a pair of them) from the Warner Archive Collection DVD release from some years back. While it wasn’t atop peoples’ wishlists and isn’t a really beloved film, its an interesting one, and a movie that deserves the format jump and came as a decent enough surprise during last month’s (March) title reveals. As mentioned, its already out, so you can pick this one up at your leisure. Most conveniently by using the Amazon link below. Continue reading ‘Frankenstein 1970 (Blu-ray Review)’


Tarantula! (Blu-ray Review)

Creepy crawling its way to Blu-ray from Scream Factory is yet another big radioactive monster movie classic from the 1950s. Tarantula is finally making its debut on the wonderful high definition format when it arrives at the end of the month on April 30th. The film itself is receiving a new 2K scan from original film elements for its presentation and Scream Factory has also put together a brand new commentary track with a couple film historians. For this releases of way back when in the Hollywood yesteryear with most involved long past, that’s about all you can ask for in a sold release in terms of new features. Pre-order you copy by clicking on the Amazon link below. Continue reading ‘Tarantula! (Blu-ray Review)’


The Mule (Blu-ray Review)

Eastwood stars as Earl Stone, a man in his 80’s who is broke, alone, and facing foreclosure of his business when he is offered a job that simply requires him to drive. Easy enough, but, unbeknownst to Earl, he’s just signed on as a drug courier for a Mexican cartel. He does well—so well, in fact, that his cargo increases exponentially, and Earl is assigned a handler. But he isn’t the only one keeping tabs on Earl; the mysterious new drug mule has also hit the radar of hard-charging DEA agent Colin Bates. And even as his money problems become a thing of the past, Earl’s past mistakes start to weigh heavily on him, and it’s uncertain if he’ll have time to right those wrongs before law enforcement, or the cartel’s enforcers, catch up to him. Continue reading ‘The Mule (Blu-ray Review)’


The Brain (Blu-ray Review)

The cult classic, science fiction horror film hybrid from the 1980s known as The Brain is getting its Blu-ray due from the folks over at Scream Factory. While not officially labeled or brand stamped a “collector’s edition”, this release come loaded with new commentaries and interviews with cast and crew produced by Justin Beahm’s Reverend Entertainment. This release is even showcasing a brand new 4K transfer from the original film negative. They appear to have gone to pretty good lengths to make this Blu-ray pretty special. You’ll be able to add this to your collection when it arrives April 30th! Continue reading ‘The Brain (Blu-ray Review)’


Glass (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)

Glass 4K ReviewI can’t say I ever thought the day would come where we’d be living in a world in which an exists a sequel to 2000’s Unbreakable whether lone two of them.   I knew there was always interest in the property, but given the downward spiral of M. Night Shayamalan’s career for awhile I never thought we’d see anything spectacular from him again.  A movie he wrote in 2010 called Devil kind of peaked my curiosity, but imagine my surprise when early reviews of 2016’s Split came with mentions of a tie-in to the Unbreakable universe.  That news practically broke the Internet (I’m exaggerating) and even further Split was actually a really great film to boot.  James McAvoy got robbed of an Academy nod for his exceptional performance, but I digress.  More importantly M. Night was suddenly back!  People were instantly in his corner and the third film in the trilogy, Glass, was fast-tracked for our viewing pleasure here now on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray April 16th.
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The Mule (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)

The Mule 4K ReviewClint Eastwood returns to the role of filmmaker and actor with The Mule.  I am personally always excited to check out a new Eastwood movie. Whether he is acting or directing, stylistically he always seems to strike a chord with me as a viewer and film fanatic.  This particular movie did just that, although with a few odd detours.  Follow down below as we explore everything about The Mule, which was recently released on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray this past Tuesday (April 2nd). Continue reading ‘The Mule (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)’


Cleopatra Jones (Blu-ray Review)

Warner Archive Collection scratches yet another title from my ongoing Blu-ray wishlist with the kick-ass 70s film Cleopatra Jones. This was a pleasant surprise when it was announced, giving potential hopes to the likes of its sequel Cleopatra Jones and the Casino of Gold landing on Blu-ray or maybe even the possibility of the Shaft sequels (Shafts Big Score, Shaft In Africa) FINALLY seeing the light of day around the time the new film drops. I’m a fan of restoring and getting these exploitation classics out there and this is one of the more high profile titles. Unfortunately its light on the bonus material, but getting a newly mastered transfer of the film on the Blu-ray format is the best you can really ask for at this point when streaming seems to be the focus of most of the major studios. It does have its classic trailer attached, so that IS something (Considering those were gems back in the day). Order a copy using the link below.  Continue reading ‘Cleopatra Jones (Blu-ray Review)’


The Kid Brother – The Criterion Collection (Blu-ray Review)

Silent comedy legend Harold Lloyd has had a few of his films entered into the Criterion Collection before, including The Freshman and the iconic Safety Last. The Kid Brother has the distinction of being Lloyd’s favorite of his films, and you can see why. Playing with a fun concept that incorporates comedy, romance, and adventure, this is a laugh-a-minute feature that packs in plenty of jokes, physical gags, and stunts. Now that it has been restored for Blu-ray, plenty of fans, old and new, can dive into this delightful feature starring Lloyd as the bespectacled everyman who gets into many kinds of hijinks.

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Bumblebee (4K UHD Blu-ray Review)

While I had never been all in on the modern day Transformers films like childhood me would have hoped, oddly enough, the spin-off prequel film Bumblebee not only garnered my attention through production. And in on odd spin of events it won over my heart completely and even made my 10 favorite films list for last year. I don’t know that there’s a series that won me over completely like this on the 6th entry (Fast & Furious movies got me at 5). In actuality its the 7th theatrical Transformers feature if you count the original animated film (Which I do love). Paramount is bringing this film set in the VHS hey-day to 4K Ultra-HD Blu-ray on April 2nd. Pre-order using the Amazon link below, or by signing up to hold a copy at your local Phar-Mor.
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If Beale Street Could Talk (Blu-ray Review)

It’s incredible to see so much power in If Beale Street Could Talk come from the way characters are presented to us. Intimate and personal, as well as alive and electric, director Barry Jenkins’ follow-up film to his Best Picture winner, Moonlight, continues to show what an incredible force he is as a director. The film is brimming with warmth and a well-crafted, non-linear story, and yet the ambition on display does not derive from an approach requiring overt displays of technical ingenuity. Instead, Jenkins relies on confidence afforded to him by his actors, and the various filmmakers he is working with. The result is a movie that deals with important themes and realistic scenarios while providing characters who are beaming with life. Now the film has arrived on Blu-ray to bring new regard to such a fantastic movie.

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The Legend Of The 7 Golden Vampires (Blu-ray Review)

Hammer Films was always known for its horror output, but its “Golden” franchises were its lengthy Frankenstein and Dracula series. Those films made legends and iconic turns for both Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee. While the Dracula films span 9 films, only 3 of them found both Cushing and Lee in them and going head to head, their confrontation being The Satanic Rites Of Dracula. Some might officially call that the end, but technically it continues on for one more film. Cushing reprises his role of Van Helsing in the Hammer and Shaw Bros team up The Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires. A bonkers idea that should never have worked, but its actually succeeds in regards as both a martial arts and gothic horror tale. Its one of the most bizarre additions in the horror genre to this day. Scream Factory is debuting it on Blu-ray which completes the Hammer Dracula run on Blu-ray for Region-Free Blu-ray collectors. If you’re not, I hope Scars of Dracula is around the corner (The UK Region-B locked Studio Canal release is terrific). The Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires arrives on April 9th, pre-ordering is available below. Continue reading ‘The Legend Of The 7 Golden Vampires (Blu-ray Review)’


Detour – The Criterion Collection (Blu-ray Review)

Not too dissimilar from when the Criterion Collection finally produced a spectacular release for Night of the Living Dead, Detour’s status as an acclaimed film noir that’s remained in the public domain has made the Edgar G. Ulmer classic an ideal movie deserving of special treatment. Thanks to a substantial amount of work, detailed in one of this release’s supplements, audiences can now take in this wonderfully atmospheric feature in a whole new way. Even those who know this film well may feel they’ll be seeing an all-new version, given the care done to restore the film. That’s not a bad thing for a movie that lasts barely over an hour, yet does everything needed to work as an essential entry among the many great noir movies out there.

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