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Classic Coming Attractions by Barrie Maxwell

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Barrie Maxwell - Main Page

Classic DVD Reviews (Continued)

My final DVD review is certainly not a classic title, but it is a western and even though recently made, I'm slipping it in here anyway. It's Goodnight for Justice, a Jason Priestley-directed effort from 2009 made for the Hallmark Channel and now available on DVD from Entertainment One.

Goodnight for Justice (DVD)

Decently-made westerns are a rarity these days, particularly those that don't originate with the major studios (though even they stumble, witness last year's lamentably bad Jonah Hex from Warner Bros.). Goodnight for Justice fortunately is not a bad little effort at all. Luke Perry stars as lawyer John Goodnight, now assigned the job of Circuit Judge for Wyoming Territory. As a child he witnessed the brutal murder of his parents and now finds himself back in the territory where it happened with the memory of the man who destroyed his family very much on his mind. There's nothing very much new in this western, but at least it treads familiar territory with proper attention paid to hitting the expected marks effectively. Luke Perry seems to be enjoying his role very much and he provides a good blend of strength and fallibility as the revenge-minded judge. Lara Gilchrist does well as a woman interested in Goodnight, but one who also may hold a key to his past. Ron Lea is the town boss who proves to be Goodnight's chief adversary. The part is not much more than a caricature, but he gives it some gravity. Jason Priestley handles the tale with an unobtrusive camera style and choreographs the action sequences in a generally low-key style. The 1.78:1 anamorphic transfer is quite good. The image looks very clean and crisp. Colours look accurate and decently saturated. The 5.1 Dolby Digital sound is fairly unremarkable. Surround usage registers only occasionally. Dialogue is clear with some directionality. Gunshots sound suitably authoritative. English subtitles are provided. Supplements comprise an on-location featurette and interviews with Perry, Priestley, and Gilchrist. Recommended as a rental.


Classic Blu-ray Review

I've never understood the disappointment espoused in some quarters over Jeffrey Hunter's performance as Jesus in Nicholas Ray's King of Kings.

King of Kings (Blu-ray Disc)

Now available on Blu-ray from Warner Bros., a recent viewing of the 1961 MGM title merely reaffirmed for me that Hunter's performance is one of the most persuasive, quietly powerful, and heartfelt of any of the screen portrayals of Christ. There's no evidence of the overly gaunt-faced, turmoil-laden figures espoused by the likes of Max Von Sydow in the ponderous Greatest Story Ever Told. Instead Hunter captures effectively the air of a man sure of himself and his destiny. His Jesus speaks quietly but directly with an assurance that conveys his own faith as well as invoking its acceptance in those he encounters. There's no better way of doing justice to such an important role. Hunter is fortunate too that his work has been captured within a spectacular evocation of the times and events - one that provides all the familiar happenings but also broadens our understanding of the background to them. Has artistic license been applied in Philip Yordan's intelligent and engrossing script? Doubtless, but the spirit of the times has been emphatically retained and if characters such as Barabbas are better done by than they deserve, it's only with the best of dramatic intentions. Under the direction of Nicholas Ray, King Of Kings is spectacle at its best - beautifully mounted and shot, with the proverbial cast of thousands used to impressive effect. The presentation of the Sermon on the Mount, for example, is one of the most emotion-stirring set pieces in this or any other biblical film. Beyond Hunter, the film is fortunate too in its other casting choices; rather than distracting well-known faces, we get mainly lesser-known American players well blended with international players of high quality. Those faring best are Siobhan McKenna as Mary mother of Jesus, Rip Torn as Judas Iscariot, Ron Randell as the enlightened Roman soldier Lucius, Robert Ryan as John the Baptist, Viveca Lindfors as Pilate's wife Claudia, and Royal Dano as Simon Peter. Joyously enwrapping the whole film is a superb score by Miklos Rozsa. Warners' 2.40:1 Blu-ray transfer of the Super Technirama 70mm image is marvelous. Sharpness, with but only an occasional soft lapse, is very fine and picture detail is always notably good. Colour fidelity is first rate with the film's many reds stunningly conveyed. Modest grain has been nicely retained and blacks are velvety and deep. The 5.1 DTS-HD Master audio does an impressive job, yielding clear concise dialogue with some good front directionality while also allowing Rozsa's score to really envelop us. The overture, entr'acte, and exit music have all being retained. The disc includes a French mono track and English SDH, French, and Spanish subtitles. The supplements are limited to a vintage featurette on the Sermon on the Mount sequence, newsreel footage of the film's premiere on both coasts, and the theatrical trailer. Very highly recommended.


New Announcements

The Ray Bradbury Theater: The Complete Collection will appear from Alliance Canada on May 31st. This is a 5-DVD collection of TV shows that Bradbury wrote over the years. With stars such as Peter O'Toole, Sally Kellerman, Eugene Levy, Shelley Duvall, Elliot Gould, and William Shatner. The set was previously released by Echo Bridge.

There are four classic releases coming from Criterion in June. June 21st brings Robert Aldrich's Kiss Me Deadly (1955) on both Blu-ray and DVD as well as Eclipse Series 26: Raffaello Matarazzo's Runaway Masterpieces (Chains, Tormento, Nobody's Children, The White Angel) from 1949-55, only on DVD. June 28th will offer the 1930 silent film People on Sunday (from Curt & Robert Siodmak, Edgar G. Ulmer, Fred Zinnemann) and Louis Malle's Zazie dans le metro (1960). Both will be issued on both Blu-ray and DVD, but the former title will not be available in Canada while the latter will not be available in Quebec. Coming on July 19th are a Blu-ray version of Jean Cocteau's Beauty and the Beast (1946) and Blu-ray and DVD versions of Satyajit Ray's The Music Room (1958). The latter includes a feature length 1984 documentary on Ray's career. July 26th will bring a Blu-ray edition of Akira Kurosawa's High and Low (1963) and Blu-ray and DVD versions of Jean-Pierre Melville's Leon Morin, Priest (1961, Jean-Paul Belmondo). Note that Leon Morin, Priest will not be available in Canada while Beauty and the Beast will not be available in Quebec.

Disney has announced Dumbo: 70th Anniversary Edition for release on Blu-ray and DVD on September 20th. The Walt Disney Restoration team apparently started with the original 70 year old nitrate camera negative stored with the U.S. Library of Congress, and turned to an original nitrate dye-transfer Technicolor print held by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences as a color reference. Audio was sourced from a rare print held by the UCLA Film and Television Archives which was apparently "the earliest surviving generation" of the original audio, and will include a 7.1 DTS mix. Extras on the DVD will include audio commentary (with Pete Docter, Paula Sigman and Andreas Deja), the original Walt Disney television introduction, a deleted scene (The Mouse's Tale), a deleted song ("Are You a Man or a Mouse?"), the Taking Flight: The Making of Dumbo documentary, The Magic of Dumbo: A Ride of Passage featurette (on the Disneyland theme part ride) and a sound design excerpt from The Reluctant Dragon. The Blu-ray will include all that, plus a Cine-Explore viewing mode, Disney View, a pair of interactive games ("What Do You See?" and "What Do You Know?"), the Celebrating Dumbo featurette and a pair of animated shorts (The Flying Mouse and Elmer Elephant).

Entertainment One has a specially-priced ($10), best-of collection of six episodes from the classic Abbott & Costello TV show for release on May 31st. The Abbott and Costello Show: Hit the Road will contain "The Vacation", "The Western Story", "The Haunted House", "Las Vegas", "Safari" and "Car Trouble".

Flicker Alley's release of the 1929 silent Norwegian epic Laila has been delayed to May 17th.

Fox has a couple of 50th Anniversary Editions on Blu-ray in digibook packaging for May 17th: The Comancheros (1961, John Wayne) and The Hustler (1961, Paul Newman). The Comancheros will include audio commentary (by Stuart Whitman, Nehemiah Persoff, Michael Ansara and Patrick Wayne), 2 featurettes (The Comancheros and the Battle for the American Southwest and The Duke at Fox: A Two-Part Documentary), a vintage Comancheros comic book gallery, A Conversation with Stuart Whitman (audio only), Fox Movietonews: Claude King and Tillman Franks Receive Award for The Comancheros, theatrical trailers and 24-page book packaging. The Hustler will include audio commentary (by Paul Newman, film historian Jeff Young, film critic Richard Schickel and others), 8 featurettes (Paul Newman at Fox, Jackie Gleason: The Big Man, The Real Hustler: Walter Tevis, Life in the Fast Lane: Fast Eddie Felson and the Search for Greatness, Milestones in Cinema History: The Hustler, Swimming with Sharks: The Art of the Hustle, The Hustler: The Inside Story and Trick Shot Analysis by Mike Massey), A&E Biography's Paul Newman: Hollywood's Cool Hand special, the How to Make the Shot scene gallery, the theatrical trailer and 24-page book packaging. In other Fox news, the studio has confirmed that it is working on a Blu-ray remaster of Patton (1970) to be released later this year (but not for the May 10th digibook version).

Grapevine Video (grapevinevideo.com) has four silent releases for May: The Better Man Wins (1922, a Pete Morrison western), The Love Trap (1929, with Laura La Plante), M'Liss (1918, with Mary Pickford), and Valley of Hate (1924, with Helen Ferguson).

Image Entertainment will release The Twilight Zone: Season 5 on Blu-ray on August 30th. In addition to the previous DVD supplements, exclusive extras on the BD include 20 new audio commentaries, featuring "The Twilight Zone Companion" author Marc Scott Zicree, author/film historian Gary Gerani (Fantastic Television), Twilight Zone directors Ted Post, Richard Donner and Robert Butler, writer Earl Hamner, actors George Takei and Peter Mark Richman, author/historian Martin Grams Jr., authors/historians Jim Benson and Scott Skelton, American Science Fiction Movies of the Fifties author Bill Warren, Sandman writer Neil Gaiman, BSG writer/director Michael Nankin and "Coast to Coast AM" radio host George Noory; conversations with Rod Serling; a vintage audio interview with director of photography George T. Clemens; and 22 radio dramas.

Kino will be releasing a 3-disc box set of all of Buster Keaton's classic silent short films in one collection. The Buster Keaton Shorts Collection will be available on July 12th on both Blu-ray and DVD. All films have been digitally remastered in high definition and include all new extras. The shorts, all from the 1920-1923 period, include The High Sign, One Week, Convict 13, The Scarecrow, Neighbors, The Haunted House, Hard Luck, The Goat, The Play House, The Boat, The Paleface, Cops, My Wife's Relations, The Blacksmith, The Frozen North, Day Dreams, The Electric House, The Balloonatic, and The Love Nest. The extras include: fifteen visual essays, illustrated with clips and stills, written by various Keaton experts; four visual essays on the film's locations by Silent Echoes author John Bengston; an eight page booklet with an essay by Jeffrey Vance, author of "Buster Keaton Remembered"; The Men Who Would Be Buster, a collection of clips from slapstick films influenced by Keaton's work; Character Studies (ca. 1925) a gag film starring Carter DeHaven, with cameos by Keaton, Harold Lloyd Fatty Arbuckle and others; Seeing Stars (excerpts), a 1922 promotional film featuring cameos by Keaton, Charlie Chaplin and others; and a series of brief, alternate/deleted shots from The Goat, The Blacksmith and The Balloonatic.

Legend Films will be releasing some of their licensed Paramount titles on Blu-ray on May 3rd. Included are two double bills - a Tony Curtis one of Houdini (1953) and Those Daring Young Men on Their Jaunty Jalopies (1969), and a Peter Cushing one of The Man Who Could Cheat Death (1959) and The Skull (1965).

Looser Than Loose's latest DVD release, available now, is a three-disc set entitled Roach: Volume Three. Included are four shorts starring Will Rogers, four starring Harold Lloyd and Snub Pollard, a pair of Paul Parrotts, a Charley Chase, a Stan Laurel one-reeler and a handful of oddities and fragments. Supporting casts include favorites like Marie Mosquini, Bebe Daniels, George Rowe, Mark Jones, William Gillespie and many more. There is even an appearance by Harold Lloyd's brother Gaylord, who stars in his own 1921 comedy in the guise of "Lonesome Luke." This is a good look at the Roach Studios "A" and "B" product from 1919 to 1927. Go to the company's website for full details - looserthanloose.com.

MGM's Blu-ray plans include releases of The Horse Soldiers (1959, John Wayne), The Misfits (1961, Clark Gable), and Some Like It Hot (1959, Jack Lemmon) on May 10th. The Big Country (1958, Gregory Peck) is on the way on Blu-ray for May 24th as a Wal-Mart exclusive. June 7th will bring to Blu-ray Vera Cruz (1954, Gary Cooper) and The Long Riders (1980, David Carradine). In other news, MGM has renewed its agreement with Fox, with the latter now continuing to distribute MGM product through 2016.

Meanwhile the MGM MOD program has added more titles, all due out on April 19th: Call of the Wild (1972, Charlton Heston), The Ceremony (1963, Laurence Harvey), Cloudburst (1951, Robert Preston), Davy Crockett Indian Scout (1950, George Montgomery), The Destructors (1974, Anthony Quinn), Fort Bowie (1958, Ben Johnson), Fort Defiance (1951, Dane Clark), Four Boys and a Gun (1957), Geronimo (1962, Chuck Connors), The Gun Runners (1958, Audie Murphy), The Happy Thieves (1962, Rita Hayworth), Old Dracula (1974, David Niven), Stolen Hours (1963, Susan Hayward), and A Thousand Clowns (1965, Jason Robards). May 3rd additions are also substantial in number: The Big Boodle (1957, Errol Flynn), Blood Bath (1966, William Campbell), The Brass Legend (1956, Hugh O'Brian), Burn Witch Burn (1961, Janet Blair), The Careless Years (1957, Dean Stockwell), Crime Against Joe (1956, John Bromfield), The Fearmakers (1958, Dana Andrews), Ghost Town (1956, Kent Taylor), The Girl in Black Stockings (1957, Lex Barker), Gun Brothers (1956, Buster Crabbe), Harry in Your Pocket (1973, James Coburn), Hell Bound (1957, John Russell), High School Hellcats (1958, Brett Halsey), Mr. Wong, Detective (1939, Boris Karloff), My Gun Is Quick (1957, Robert Bray), Mystery of Mr. Wong (1939, Boris Karloff), Nun and the Sergeant (1962, Robert Webber), Oklahoma Territory (1960, Bill Williams), Park Row (1952, Gene Evans), Report to the Commissioner (1975, Michael Moriarty), and Take a Giant Step (1959, Johnny Nash).

Milestone's release of Araya (1959) has been pushed back from April 5th to May 17th. Milestone has also announces the MILESTONE-ON-DEMAND video line. In an effort to create greater access to its extensive Milestone collection, high quality masters and replication will be used in the coming months to release some of its most long-sought-after titles. Silent films, documentaries, foreign films and classic comedy shorts will all be featured in the coming months. Coming on June 7th will be And Now, Miguel (1953).

MPI will have three Best-of Collections with episodes chosen by fans for release on July 26th. Here's Lucy: The Best of Collection will have 7 episodes; The Jackie Gleason Show - The Color Honeymooners: The Best of Collection will have 4 episodes; and The Honeymooners - The Lost Episodes: The Best of Collection will have 5 episodes. All are single-disc releases.

Olive Films, the company that has been releasing some Paramount catalog titles, will have its first such releases on Blu-ray on July 5th. The titles are Crack in the World (1965, Dana Andrews) and Hannie Caulder (1971, Raquel Welsh), both of which Olive released on DVD just last summer. DVD titles forthcoming include Otto Preminger's Hurry Sundown (1967, Michael Caine) and Such Good Friends (1971, Dyan Cannon) on May 17th and Skidoo (1969, Jackie Gleason) on July 19th. Summer and Smoke (1961, Laurence Harvey) is now available. Sands of the Kalahari (1965, Stuart Whitman) is due on August 2nd in both Blu-ray and DVD.

Paramount has a nice wave of four westerns, all in Blu-ray, set for May 31st. The titles are: Big Jake (1971, John Wayne), A Man Called Horse (1970, Richard Harris), Once Upon a Time in the West (1968, Charles Bronson), and Rio Lobo (1970, John Wayne). Once Upon a Time in the West ports over all the supplements from the DVD SE. Coming on June 7th will be Rawhide: The Fourth Season, Volume 1 with Volume 2 expected out before the end of the year. July 5th will see the release of Mannix: The Fifth Season. Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961, Audrey Hepburn) is coming to Blu-ray from Paramount on August 23rd.

Screen Archives, the company that is releasing classic Fox titles under the Twilight Time label has revealed that the second title in the series - Violent Saturday (planned for April 12th) - will receive only a 4x3 letterbox release, not 16x9 anamorphic as apparently Fox has no anamorphic elements in the vault. Meanwhile, the series' first title, The Kremlin Letter, is now available via screenarchives.com. Fate Is the Hunter (1964, Glenn Ford) is set for May 10th. The forthcoming release of The Egyptian, set for July 12th, will be available in both DVD and Blu-ray.

Sony's MOD Columbia titles, first introduced last autumn, will be available through the Warner Archive site (warnerarchive.com) beginning April 13th (about 150 titles in all). The titles will also continue to be available through Sony's own site, columbia-classics.com. Six new classic titles have been added, for release on May 3rd: Because They're Young (1960, Dick Clark), Eight Iron Men (1952, Lee Marvin), The Goddess (1958, Kim Stanley), Laramie (1949, Charles Starrett), The Liberation of L.B. Jones (1970, Roscoe Lee Browne), The Reluctant Saint (1962, Maximilian Schell), and The Return of Daniel Boone (1941, Bill Elliott). Revealed on Sony's Columbia Classics website is news that a third volume of film noir titles is being prepared as is a release of the long version of Carl Foreman's The Victors (1963). Douglas Sirk's Slightly French (1949, Dorothy Lamour) and Phil Karlsen's Key Witness (1960) are on the way as Sony MOD releases in June. No other details are available on these titles as yet.

The TCM/Universal Vault Collection is adding two releases in the spring. Coming on May 2nd is a pre-Code double feature of The Song of Songs (1933, Marlene Dietrich) and This Is the Night (1932, Lily Damita and featuring Cary Grant's debut). Then on June 6th we'll get an Audie Murphy set of Sierra (1950), Ride Clear of Diablo (1954), Drums Across the River (1954), and Ride a Crooked Trail (1958).

Timeless Media Group will release 26 Men on April 12th. It will be a 20-episode 3-disc "best of" set for the 1957 western TV series. On June 7th, The Gene Autry Show: The Complete First Season will be available in a three-disc set. The episodes will be fully restored and uncut, taken from Autry's personal film and TV archive. From the same source comes Autry's first starring appearance, in 1935's Republic serial The Phantom Empire (3-disc set) - also appearing on June 7th. These Autry releases are but the first shot in an arrangement with the Autry estate. Timeless will also release the 40 Gene Autry westerns that didn't previously appear from Image. They'll be packaged in groups of four titles. Eventually Timeless will also re-release all Image-released Autry titles. Timing is yet to be announced.

Time-Life, in conjunction with NBC/Universal Television, will offer The Best of the Dean Martin Variety Show on May 24th. The release will be available as a single DVD (four show episodes and more than 15 musical performances), a double DVD set (seven show episodes and more than 30 musical performances), and a six-DVD Collector's Edition (more than 50 guests and 80 musical performances).

Twilight Time's July 12th release of The Egyptian on both Blu-ray and DVD will include audio commentary by Alain Silver and James Ursini as well the isolated score of Bernard Herrmann and Alfred Newman. Meanwhile, Woman Obsessed (1959, Susan Hayward) is set for June 14th and Stagecoach (1966, Alex Cord) is tentatively planned for this coming October.

The Universal MOD Vault series added a number of titles on April 26th: The Ballad of Josie (1967, Doris Day), Blonde Venus (1932, Marlene Dietrich), Death Takes a Holiday (1934, Fredric March), Lady in a Jam (1942, Irene Dunne), A Lovely Way to Die (1968, Kirk Douglas), Man in the Shadow (1957, Orson Welles), Morocco (1930, Marlene Dietrich), Pete n Tillie (1972, Walter Matthau), Pittsburgh (1942, John Wayne), Raid on Rommel (1971, Richard Burton), Seven Sinners (1940, Marlene Dietrich), Ulzana's Raid (1972, Burt Lancaster), and The Virginian (1946, Joel McCrea). A number of these titles have been previously available on DVD.

VCI has three more British releases for May 17th: We Dive at Dawn (1943, John Mills), The 39 Steps (1959, Kenneth More), and Midnight Is a Place: Complete Series. Coming on July 5th is Miranda (1948, Glynis Johns). Meanwhile, Simon and Laura, Tennessee's Partner, To Paris with Love, and Upstairs and Downstairs have all been delayed from April 19th to May 3rd. VCI's May 3rd releases of Above Us the Waves, The Malta Story, Sea of Sand, Silent Discoveries, and The Way to the Stars have been delayed to May 17th. VCI's latest DVD announcements include Miranda (1948, Glynis Johns), Tiara Tahiti (1962, James Mason), and I Was Happy Here (1966, Sarah Miles). All are due out on July 5th.

The Warner Archive has released four musicals on March 15th: Yolanda and the Thief (1945, Fred Astaire), Invitation to the Dance (1956, Gene Kelly), Little Nellie Kelly (1940, Judy Garland), and Thoroughbreds Don't Cry (1937, Mickey Rooney). All are taken from the best existing masters with no new restoration involved. March 22nd additions to the Archive include The Rise and Rise of Michael Rimmer (1970,Peter Cook), The Squeeze (1976, Stacy Keach), The Last Dinosaur (1977, Richard Boone), and Valley of the Dinosaurs (1974, Hanna-Barbera complete collection on 2 discs). Additions for March 29th include The Unfinished Dance (1947, Margaret O'Brien), While the City Sleeps (1956, Dana Andrews), Beyond a Reasonable Doubt (1956, Dana Andrews), and The Age of Innocence (1934, Irene Dunne). April Fool's Day additions, and no joke about them, are Abbott and Costello Meet Captain Kidd (1952, remastered), Rio Rita (1942, A&C, remastered), Don't Make Waves (1967, Tony Curtis, remastered), The Impossible Years (1968, David Niven, remastered), and Merry Andrew (1958, Danny Kaye, remastered). April 12th additions include Vitaphone Varieties (1926-1930, a 4-disc collection of 60 shorts), The Boy Friend (1971, Twiggy), Savage Messiah (1972, Scott Anthony), Meet Me in Las Vegas (1956, Dan Dailey, remastered), Rose Marie (1954, Ann Blyth, remastered), and I Love Melvin (1953, Donald O'Connor). April 19th additions include six Myrna Loy titles - The Squall (1929), The Great Divide (1929), New Morals for Old (1932), The Prizefighter and the Lady (1933), Third Finger Left Hand (1940), and So Goes My Love (1946) - plus four MGM 60s rock n roll titles (remastered) - Hold On! (1966, Herman's Hermits), Mrs. Brown You've Got a Lovely Daughter (1968, Herman's Hermits), The Fastest Guitar Alive (1967, Roy Orbison), and Get Yourself a College Girl (1964, Mary Ann Mobley). April 26th additions include three James Garner titles, all remastered - The Wheeler Dealers (1963), Mister Buddwing (1966), Marlowe (1969) - and a collection of Hanna-Barbera's Frankenstein Jr. and The Impossibles (1966). May 3rd brings The Mexican Spitfire: Complete 8-Movie Collection (1939-1943, Lupe Velez), Kongo (1933, Walter Huston), Strictly Dynamite (1934, Jimmy Durante), Probe (1972, Hugh O'Brian), and Smile Jenny, You're Dead (1974, David Janssen). The forthcoming Archive releases of the Nelson Eddy/Jeanette MacDonald films Naughty Marietta and Sweethearts will be TCM Vault exclusives due on May 10th rather than April 26th. Archive additions for May 10th include: Advance to the Rear (1964, Glenn Ford), Bombardier (1943, Pat O'Brien), Don't Go Near the Water (1957, Glenn Ford), Flight Command (1940, Robert Taylor), The Honeymoon Machine (1961, Steve McQueen), The Horizontal Lieutenant (1961, Jim Hutton), PT-109 (1963, Cliff Robertson), See Here, Private Hargrove (1944, Robert Walker), and Toward the Unknown (1956, William Holden). All are remastered except Flight Command and Bombardier. May 24th will bring The FBI: The First Season, Part One (1965-66) in a four-disc set.

Warner Bros. has confirmed that we'll get a Ben-Hur: 50th Anniversary Ultimate Collector's Edition on Blu-ray and DVD this fall. The "limited and numbered" edition will be available in stores in time for the holiday shopping season - specific street date yet to be announced. Included will be a reproduction of the personal diary that Charlton Heston kept during the production, complete with personal photos and his own sketches. There will also be a new HD documentary on Heston's experiences during the making of the film, entitled Charlton Heston & Ben-Hur: A Personal Journey, which includes home movie footage shot by his wife Lydia inside the Colloseum set. That's in addition to all of the previous DVD special features, which include audio commentary, Ben-Hur: The 1925 Silent Version, the 2005 Ben-Hur: The Epic That Changed Cinema documentary, the 1994 Ben-Hur: The Making of an Epic documentary, the Ben-Hur: A Journey Through Pictures A/V presentation (featuring photos, storyboards, sketches, music and dialogue from the film), screen tests, vintage newsreels, highlights from the 1960 Academy Awards ceremony, trailers and more. You'll also get an exclusive book filled with production photos, production art and a reproduction of the original theatrical press book. The Blu-ray version will feature 2 BD-50s, while the DVD version will be a 5-disc set. July 12th will bring four more of those TCM/Warner collections of four recycled titles on two discs. They are: TCM Greatest Classic Legends: Burt Lancaster (Local Hero [1983], Seven Days in May [1964], Executive Action [1973], The Flame and the Arrow [1950]); TCM Greatest Classic Legends: Lucille Ball (The Long Long Trailer [1954], Forever Darling [1956], Room Service [1938], DuBarry Was a Lady [1943]); TCM Greatest Classic Films: Shakespeare (A Midsummer Night's Dream [1935], Othello [1965], Romeo and Juliet [1936], Anthony and Cleopatra [1972]); and TCM Greatest Classic Films: Literary Romance (Little Women [1949], Pride and Prejudice [1940], Madame Bovary [1949], Anna Karenina [1935]).

Well once again, that's it for now. I'll return again soon.

Barrie Maxwell
barriemaxwell@thedigitalbits.com

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