My Two Cents

My Two Cents

All right, let’s get this over with. Our friends over at Trek Core have learned (and they’re right) something that’s going to infuriate Star Trek fans, and sadly suggests that neither Paramount nor Bad Robot have learned from fan complaints about their previous Star Trek Blu-ray mistakes. As you know, Star Trek Beyond is expected to street on Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray on 11/1, all with lots of extras... except filmmaker audio commentary. Well, you guessed it... once again, the iTunes Digital download version is going to have an exclusive “enhanced” commentary.

[Editor’s Note: Turns out there’s another Target-exclusive Bonus Disc too. See here: “Bonus blu-ray disc with over 90 minutes of extras including 45 minutes of exclusive content: Get a behind the scenes look at the film’s incredible visual effects, costumes and props. Plus, see how Director Justin Lin and the cast and crew of Star Trek Beyond created the climactic Battle of Yorktown, and more!”]

So... yeah. [Read on here…]


Well... based on an overwhelmingly positive reaction to my look at art books on 2001: A Space Odyssey last night, it seems like you guys enjoy it when we roam a bit off in the wilderness here at The Bits, thematically speaking. So I think we’ll try and do it a little more often in the weeks and months ahead. It’s certainly fun and it definitely keeps things interesting. Thanks for all the kind words, and I’ve very glad you liked the article.  [Read on here…]


I decided that I wanted to do something a little different with today’s My Two Cents column on The Digital Bits, so I thought I’d review a few new and/or recent books that may be of interest to cinephiles, especially those of you who are fans of Stanley Kubrick’s legendary 2001: A Space Odyssey.

As many of you would agree, I’m sure, 2001 is a landmark of filmed science fiction. Based loosely on a short story by visionary author Arthur C. Clarke, it depicts an AI-guided and manned journey through space, first to the Moon and then out to Jupiter, in response to the discovery of an alien artifact on the Moon’s surface, apparently having been buried there millions of years ago.

Not only was Kubrick’s film notable for its realistic depiction of the Moon’s surface fully a year before NASA’s Apollo astronauts actually landed there, it’s been lauded ever since for its realistic approach to depicting future spaceflight technology. Indeed, some of those who contributed designs to the project were actually involved in the space program. [Read on here…]


All right, the big news today is that Network Distributing Ltd. in the U.K. has announced the Region B release of Gerry Anderson’s UFO: The Complete Series on Blu-ray on 11/14 (SRP £69.99). The series is restored in high-definition and includes all 26 episodes with audio in the original mono as well as new 5.1 mixes, and a ton of new and legacy special features. Among them is a brand new feature-length documentary called From Earth to the Moon, featuring interviews, archive video, audio, and stills (some never-before-seen). There’s also the new The Women of UFO documentary, a newly-produced SHADO “briefing film” called Identified: SHADO New Recruits Briefing, textless episode title backgrounds, textless end titles, stock footage, TV spots, extra footage for Identified and Exposed, unused footage from Timelash and The Long Sleep, Italian trailers, audio commentaries on Identified (with Gerry Anderson) and Sub-Smash (with Ed Bishop), S.I.D. Computer Voice Session and audio outtakes for these sessions and Kill Straker!, an archive Ed Bishop audio interview from 1996, the Tomorrow Today: Future Fashions with Sylvia Anderson featurette, extensive image galleries (with previously unseen images), and an exclusive 600-page book on the making of the series by archive television historian Andrew Pixley.  [Read on here…]


All right, we’ve got a couple interesting things for you today. First up, Sony unveiled its first 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray player, the UBP-X1000ES, at the CEDIA Expo recently. It’s an ES Series reference unit that supports the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, BD-ROM, DVD Video, DVD Audio, CD, and SACD formats, as well as numerous video codecs compatible with Amazon Video, YouTube, etc. It can upscale content to 4K, features HDR compatibility and offers “a dedicated picture mode for HDR content – when playing 4K HDR content on a 4K SDR television the X1000ES utilizes a unique Sony algorithm to reproduce the proper brightness and color gradations to provide the best picture possible.” It’s compatible with Dolby Atmos and DTS-X, plus has a “32-bit processing DAC compatible with both native DSD (at up to 11.2 MHz) and LPCM (at up to 192kHz) Hi-Res Music files, which are available in a number of different formats.”  [Read on here…]


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