Archive for the 'Editorials' Category
On a desolate, nearly ruined future Earth, Tom Cruise (Mission Impossible Franchise) and Academy Award winner Morgan Freeman (The Dark Knight Rises, Wanted) star in the ground-breaking cinematic event Oblivion, a visually stunning, post-Apocalyptic thriller. A glimpse of a perilous future from visionary filmmaker Joseph Kosinski (TRON: Legacy) and the producers of Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Oblivion is a throwback to the science fiction movies from the seventies, as one man confronts his mysterious past in a journey of redemption and discovery. This groundbreaking cinematic event stars Tom Cruise as Jack Harper, the lone security repairman stationed on a desolate, nearly-ruined future Earth. When he rescues a beautiful stranger from a downed spacecraft, her arrival triggers a nonstop chain of events that forces him to question everything he knows, and leaves humanity’s fate in his hands. Academy Award winner Morgan Freeman joins Cruise in this explosive story from the director of TRON: Legacy and the producer of Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Continue reading ‘Oblivion Arrives on Blu-ray this August!’
Comic books can be a thing of beauty, even in their darkest tales. Unfortunately one issue plaguing them today is lack of originality. That is certainly not to say it’s an issue across the board as there are great, unique titles like Chew and Punk Rock Jesus. Still, store shelves are often lined with watered-down stories and titles that are mere carbon copies of one another. It wasn’t until very recently that I came across one particular story that caught my eye. I discovered it on everybody’s favorite project-launching platform; Kickstarter. While Kickstarter is where dreams can be made, this book itself goes much deeper than someone’s hope to see their work in print.
Inspired by the true-life events confronting Abraham Lincoln and his monumental moral and political challenge to amend the United States Constitution to permanently abolish slavery, Lincoln is a rich and compelling historical and human drama that has been hailed as one of the best film of the year. In-depth bonus features on the Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack takes viewers behind-the-scenes of director Spielberg’s life-long fascination with Lincoln and the 12 years it took to bring the story of one of history’s and mankind’s greatest triumphs to the screen. As a 2013 Oscar and Golden Globe Award-winner for his performance as America’s 16th president, Daniel Day-Lewis leads an all-star cast including Academy Award winners Tommy Lee Jones and Sally Field. Also starring David Strathaim, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and James Spader, Lincoln is based on a screenplay by Pulitzer Prize-winner Tony Kushner. The film is scored by multiple Oscar-winner John Williams. Continue reading ‘Lincoln (Blu-ray Review)’
Academy Award winners Warren Beatty (Best Director, Reds, 1981) and Dustin Hoffman (Best Actor, Kramer vs. Kramer, 1979; Rain Man, 1988) star in writer/director Elaine May’s Director’s Cut of the legendary comedy Ishtar debuting for the first time on Blu-ray August 6th from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Two terrible lounge singers get booked to play a gig in a Moroccan hotel but somehow become pawns in an international power play between the CIA, the Emir of Ishtar, and the rebels trying to overthrow his regime. The film also stars two-time Oscar nominee Isabelle Adjani (Best Actress, The Story of Adele H, 1975; Camille Claudel, 1988), Charles Grodin (Rosemary’s Baby, The Heartbreak Kid), Jack Weston (Wait Until Dark, Cactus Flower), Oscar nominee Tess Harper (Best Supporting Actress, Crimes of the Heart, 1986) and Oscar nominee Carol Kane (Best Actress, Hester Street, 1975). If you haven’t seen this film you should give it a chance! Avoid the bandwagon mentality! Continue reading ‘Ishtar Gets Another Chance on Blu-ray this August!’
A long time ago, in a faraway land, legend tells an extraordinary tale of courage and friendship…. Get ready for swashbuckling adventure, unforgettable characters, memorable music, and lots of laughs in Disney’s Disney’s Robin Hood, one of the most cherished animated films of all time. Heroic Robin Hood — along with his trusted companion Little John and his devoted band of merry men — conjures up one famously funny and daring deed after another to outfox greedy Prince John and bring happiness to the residents of Sherwood Forest. Disney’s Robin Hood: 40th Anniversary Edition also features a forest full of merriment with a never-before-seen stoyline, an alternate ending, games, and Disney Song Selection, plus a new digital transfer, 5.1 Surround Sound, and much more! Continue reading ‘Disney’s Robin Hood: 40th Anniversary Edition Finally Arrives on Blu-ray this August!’
Humor, spectacle and magic rule in Walt Disney’s legendary classic tale The Sword in the Stone – now celebrating its 50th Anniversary with exciting new bonus features! Embark on an adventure-filled quest for an unlikely hero! According to legend, only someone with honor, decency and inner strength can claim the throne of England — by pulling out the enchanted sword that lies locked in a massive stone. Many brave knights have tried, so it seems impossible that a young apprentice known as Wart could succeed. But with the guidance of the wizard Merlin, help from some hilarious friends and true strength of character, Wart just might become England’s greatest king. There’s even more wizardry fun with marvelous new bonus features including the all-new Merlin’s Magical Academy game, animated shorts, Disney’s song selection and much more! The Sword in the Stone: 50th Anniversary Edition is a magical experience your whole family will want to share again and again. Continue reading ‘Disney’s The Sword in the Stone: 50th Anniversary Edition Announced’
See how the Muppets began, with the nearly 35th Anniversary Special Edition of the original, classic that started it all—The Muppet Movie, produced by the cultural icon and Muppet creator himself, Jim Henson! Witness the hilarious origins of everyone’s favorite Muppets–Kermit the Frog, Fozzie Bear, Miss Piggy, Gonzo, Animal, and the rest—as they embark on an inspirational and laugh-filled road trip to follow their Hollywood dreams. And now for the first time, you and your family can see the Muppets make the “rainbow connection” in vibrant Blu-ray Hi-Def. Continue reading ‘The Muppet Movie: 35th Anniversary Special Edition Arrives on Blu-ray this August!’
While this summer is packed with superhero and comic book movies, including Iron Man 3 and Man of Steel, there still is room for Hugh Jackman to reprise his role as one of the most popular mutants around, Wolverine. The Wolverine is the latest adventure for old man Logan, taking place after the events of all of the previous X-Men films and setting itself in Japan. The story is based in part on one of the most famous comic arcs for the character, developed by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller. While X-Men Origins: Wolverine left many fans disappointed, The Wolverine looks like a step in a much better direction. Continue on to see the new trailer as well as a batch of very cool, character-based posters.
Bruce Willis reprises his iconic role as police detective John McClane in A Good Day to Die Hard, set against the backdrop of deadly corruption and political vendetta in Russia. McClane arrives in Moscow to track down his estranged son, Jack, (Jai Courtney), and is stunned to discover he’s working undercover to protect a government whistleblower, Komarov. With their own necks on the line, the McClanes are forced to overcome their differences in order to get Komarov to safety and thwart a potentially disastrous crime in the most desolate place on Earth – Chernobyl. Keeping audiences on the edge of their seats for 25 years, this latest chapter of the popular action franchise delivers the thrills and the ultimate father-son action duo as A Good Day to Die Hard debuts on Digital HD on May 14 three weeks before the Blu-ray and DVD release on June 4 from Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. Continue reading ‘A Good Day to Die Hard (DigitalHD™ Copy Review)’
Following the special screenings and Q&As for The Mist and the double-dose of Guillermo del Toro features, I was then able to catch a screening of the horror remake Maniac at the Hero Complex Film Festival in LA. Maniac is a remake of an 80s horror feature of the same name and features the same basic story of depravity, as we follow a serial killer around and watch him scalp his female victims. The separating factor for this version is how stylish it is. Along with the 80s synth-infused soundtrack, Maniac is almost completely shot from the perspective of the killer, bringing a lot of credence to the challenging filmmaking techniques used to accomplish this. However, deciphering between which is great, the style or the overall effectiveness of the film, is where the challenge in accepting Maniac really lies.
Following The Mist, I was also able to attend another very entertaining scheduled event at the Hero Complex Film Festival, a back-to-back screening of the The Devil’s Backbone and Pan’s Labyrinth. Both are films written and directed by Guillermo del Toro, who provided an hour-long Q&A in between features. For anyone who is familiar with Guillermo del Toro, they would know that he is one of the most entertaining directors to listen to, as he is always full of passion for his projects and isn’t one to censor himself (not to mention his wonderful Mexican accent). This entire conversation has been recorded and provided in a link. Read on to learn more about what he had to say about his past films, his career as a filmmaker, his personal life, and his upcoming feature films, most notably Pacific Rim (Post Updated with latest Pacific Rim trailer).
I was happy to be able to attend the Hero Complex Film Festival in Hollywood this year and check out a few of the events that were on the lineup. For me, the first scheduled event that I took part in was a screening of The Mist (an original 35mm print) followed by a Q&A. Initially I was led to believe that only writer/director Frank Darabont would be in attendance, but I was happy to see that star Tom Jane was also on hand to discuss this 2007 horror film. As a big fan of The Mist, I was very excited to check out the film with an audience, my first time on the big screen since Thanksgiving 2007 (an amazing release date for this of all films). Read on to learn more about what went down at this Q&A, as well as find the entire recording of this conversation.
The Walt Disney Studios proudly celebrates the heartwarming animated classic that started it all – “The Many Adventures of Winnie The Pooh.” Experience the very first time Tigger “pounces” Pooh; laugh out loud when Pooh’s rumbly tumbly gets him stuck in a hilariously sticky situation… All your favorite Hundred Acre Wood characters come alive in this timeless motion picture overflowing with rich animation, masterful storytelling and unforgettable songs. Once again reuniting audiences with Pooh, Tigger, Rabbit, Piglet, Owl, Kanga, Roo and last, but certainly not least, Eeyore (who has lost his tail), “The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh” Blu-ray Combo Pack release has been sweetened to include a robust list of extras including a groundbreaking Disney Intermission activity, the beloved theatrical short “A Day for Eeyore,” five all-new “Mini Adventures of Winnie the Pooh” short films, and….an exclusive free in-pack kite.
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Academy Award-nominated (1993 for Best Picture) The Fugitive on September 3 with a new anniversary Blu-ray edition. The heart-pounding thriller stars Harrison Ford as wrongly-convicted Dr. Richard Kimble and Tommy Lee Jones in his Oscar and Golden Globe winning performance as Kimble’s relentless pursuer. Kimble, who has been unjustly accused of murdering his wife, must find the real killer, and the reasons for the slaying, before he’s captured thanks to a nationwide manhunt led by tenacious United States Deputy Marshal Sam Gerard. This is one of Harrison Ford’s best films and it also represents the best representation of director Andrew Davis’ career. Tommy Lee Jones’ memorable award winning role as Gerard was also justifiably acclaimed too. If you haven’t seen this thriller, you should correct that right now with this new edition that offers a lot more extras than the previous release! Continue reading ‘The Fugitive: 20th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray Arrives on September 3!’
I have already reviewed the Closing Night film of the 2013 Newport Beach Film Festival (the very entertaining The Way Way Back), but this is my final article in regards to the films I saw on Thursday night, closing out my time covering the festival. It has been an exciting and exhausting experience, but I have been very pleased with the amount of coverage I have been able to provide this year and look forward to continuing to cover the festival next year. The final round of films I will be reviewing here are very different from each other, but have their merits. The Iceman is a crime drama based on true events that recounts the story of one of America’s most notorious contract killers. Ghost Team One is a pseudo-documentary made in the vein of Paranormal Activity, but handled with a very comedic touch. I was looking forward to both of these features and can now delve into what I thought about them.
The closing night film for the 2013 Newport Beach Film Festival is a real audience pleaser. The Way Way Back is a fairly standard coming-of-age story about an introverted boy opening up to others thanks to good-natured people he befriends, away from his family. The film is not breaking any new ground nor is it taking a familiar story to the next level in the way a film like Adventureland did, but it is incredibly likable, thanks to some key performances and a winning level of energy. Not every film needs to be something new and in the case of The Way Way Back, it succeeds by going back to the basics and letting us enjoy a traditional tale.
When Oscar Diggs (James Franco), a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics, is hurled away from dusty Kansas to the vibrant Land of Oz, he thinks he’s hit the jackpot. Fame and fortune are his for the taking. That is until he meets three witches: Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams), who are not convinced he is the great wizard everyone’s been expecting. Reluctantly drawn into the epic problems facing the Land of Oz and its inhabitants, Oscar must find out who is good and who is evil before it is too late. Putting his magical arts to use through illusion, ingenuity and even a bit of wizardry, Oscar transforms himself not only into a great wizard but into a better man as well.
Compared to my Tuesday night at the 2013 Newport Beach Film Festival, Wednesday was a much lighter affair. While The Hunt is still my favorite film that I have seen at the festival this year, both Geography Club and Paris Manhattan were much cheerier films that I can imagine would win over many audiences. While neither is necessarily great, I would say that there is much to enjoy in each and they served as a nice turnaround from some of the darker films that I have been watching at the festival. Geography Club is a light high school comedy-drama about a student facing a truth that will affect his social standing. Paris Manhattan is a French romantic comedy that would make a certain New York filmmaker proud. Considering the breeziness of both features, it was easy enough for me to let the charm of them have an effect.