All right, we’re back! We hope you all had a lovely and safe Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and/or New Year’s celebration – as the case may be – with your family and friends. My wife and I had a pretty solid case of the flu over Christmas, but we’re mostly recovered now (save for a lingering cough) so we spent New Year’s in Joshua Tree National Park with family. I brought my telescope and so we got some nice star watching in along with the usual hiking and whatnot. By the way, if you’re ever in Twentynine Palms, California and you’re in the mood for barbecue, be sure to visit The Rib Co., because they know what they’re doing.
In any case, we’ve got a number of things going on here at The Bits this week. First, I’ll spend the next couple of days catching you up on new and recent Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD announcement news. I’ll also be getting back into the BD and 4K review rhythm. And of course, the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) kicks off next week in Las Vegas, so we’ll keep you up to date on developments there too. [Read on here…]
We’ll be back to our regular Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD news and reviews work here at The Bits starting on Tuesday, but in the meantime we just wanted to drop in and wish you all a very Happy New Year and best wishes to your family and friends.
And if you’re looking for a little cinephile reading, be sure to check out Michael Coate’s recent History Legacy & Showmanship columns featuring anniversary celebrations of Casino Royale (1967), Camelot, Tomorrow Never Dies, The Dark Crystal, Die Another Day, and The Graduate, all of which have been posted in the last week or two.All right… be safe, be happy, and may 2018 bring better things for all of us. Peace out!
- Bill Hunt
All right, we’ve got a couple things for you here at The Bits today...
First though, my apologies for being MIA for the last couple of days. We had family visiting this weekend and unfortunately they brought with them a plague-level case of the flu. Pretty much everyone ended up getting sick, including yours truly. I’ve literally been laid up in bed since Sunday. Get your flu shots, folks. I wish I had. The flu’s a bad one this year. Anyway, I’m about a good strong 60% right now, which is enough for me to get a couple things posted here on the site, starting with this...
Our own Michael Coate has just turned in a great new History, Legacy & Showmanship column here at The Bits celebrating the 50th anniversary of Mike Nichols’ The Graduate. The piece features a look back at the film’s original release and also a new interview with historian Beverly Gray. It’s worth your time, so do give it a look. [Read on here…]
As planned, my old friend Robert Meyer Burnett and I – joined by our significant others – saw Star Wars: The Last Jedi last night here in fiery SoCal. In Dolby Cinema no less, which is a helluva great way to see a film, let me tell you. We had absolutely perfect reclining seats, bright and vibrant laser projection, and Atmos sound to shake our backsides. And a good time was had by all, as you can see by the pictures.
But looking around on social media today, I’m struck by this thought: I kinda miss the days when people could just watch a movie. Seems to me, we used to know how to do that without all the handwringing and chest-puffery and whatnot. This is Star Wars, after all… not the Allied plans for the invasion of Normandy. [Read on here…]
Afternoon, everyone! All right, we have more big news to report for you today...
The Walt Disney Company has just reached a deal to purchase 20th Century Fox and all related entertainment assets from Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox for a deal reportedly worth in the neighborhood $68 billion. Yes, that includes the rights to the original Star Wars films. 21st Century Fox will retain Fox Broadcasting, Fox Sports, Fox News, and all the Fox TV stations, along with the actual 20th Century Fox studio lot in Century City. You can read more about this here at Variety today.
Now... with this news breaking, naturally the first question movie fans want to know is: Does this mean the original Star Wars is finally going to be released on disc. And the answer is: Cool your thrusters, Space Cowboys. [Read on here…]
All right, we’ve got a couple good items of business for you today, the first of which is a new 4K review…
I’ve just given Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar a look on 4K Ultra HD from Paramount. The disc streets next Tuesday, 12/19. It’s a full native 4K transfer and of course the film was shot in a combination of 35 mm and 65 mm IMAX, so it’s variable aspect ratio and looks tremendous. The disc will also appear in Warner’s Christopher Nolan Collection 4K box set which streets next Tuesday as well. We don’t yet have the whole box, but as soon as we do, rest assured we’ll get the other films reviewed for you guys as soon as possible.
FYI, Tim has also just posted his review of Captain from Castile on Blu-ray from Twilight Time. Enjoy! [Read on here…]
Afternoon, folks. We’ve got a bunch of release news to report today and some new disc reviews too. First the reviews...
Our own Tim Salmons has checked in with a look at a pair of All Region Blu-rays from Aussie distributor Umbrella Entertainment, including Drive-In Delirium: ’60s and ’70s Savagery and Drive-In Delirium: Maximum ’80s Overdrive. Be sure to check them out.
We’ve also posted the weekly update of the Release Dates & Artwork section with all the latest Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD cover art and Amazon.com pre-order links. As always, we’d appreciate it if you used our Amazon links (any one of them) when you’re shopping from the retailer. Thank you!
The big news today is that Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has set Dean Devlin’s Geostorm for release on Blu-ray and DVD on 1/23 (SRP $35.99 and $28.98), with a Digital release expected on 1/23. There’s no 4K Ultra HD version currently planned it seems, at least not at the moment. Extras on the Blu-ray will include 3 featurettes (Wreaking Havoc, Search for Answers, and An International Event). [Read on here…]
We have just a couple of quick release announcements and updates to offer you today, before we let you all head out for the weekend…
Shout! Factory has announced The ‘Burbs: Collector’s Edition for release on Blu-ray on 3/20 as part of their Shout Select line.
Also coming that day as part of their Select line is Oliver Hirschbiegel’s Downfall, an absoutely fantastic film about the last days of Hitler in WWII starring Bruno Ganz (and the source of a surprisingly persistent viral YouTube meme you may be familiar with – one of the early versions even referenced The Bits, as some of you longtime readers may recall). Shout! also has Macon County Line coming on 1/16 to the Select line. Extras on these titles are still TBA. [Read on here…]
All right, no sooner did we post our last column then word came in that Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has officially set Denis Villeneuve’s Blade Runner: 2049 for release on Blu-ray Combo, Blu-ray 3D Combo, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD on 1/16/18, as expected (SRP $35.99, $44.95, $28.98, and $44.95, respectively). The Digital HD release is set for 12/26.
It appears that the Blu-ray and 4K editions will all feature Dolby Atmos audio. There’s mention of High Dynamic Range in the official press release, but not Dolby Vision, so the HDR is likely HDR10.
Keep in mind that this film was finished as a native 4K Digital Intermediate (with digital capture at 3.4K), so it should look pretty great, especially in Ultra HD. [Read on here…]
We’re kicking things off today here at The Bits with two more new Blu-ray Disc reviews, including my thoughts on Makoto Shinkai’s stunning and highly-acclaimed anime Your Name from Toho and FUNimation, as well as Sting: Live at the Olympia Paris, a great new concert film from Eagle Vision. I think you’ll find both well worth a look.
In release news today, industry and retail sources are telling us to expect Denis Villeneuve’s Blade Runner: 2049 to street on Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD on 1/16/18 from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. Keep in mind, this title is not officially announced yet, but we expect official word from the studio very soon. [Read on here…]