my two cents 1000

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All right, first things first today… I want to thank all those of you who have wished me well on Facebook, Twitter, and via e-mail over the weekend. You’ll be happy to know that my face survived its encounter with a falling picture frame (see Friday’s post here) and that, other than some bruising, soreness and swelling, my eye is a-okay. Every damn one of those 14 stitches is itching like crazy though. What can you do?

Anyway, we’re kicking things off today here at The Bits with a new Blu-ray review from our own Jim Hemphill, this time featuring his thoughts on Michael Winner’s Chato’s Land (1972). The classic western stars Charles Bronson and Jack Palance and is now available on Blu-ray from Twilight Time. Do give it a look.  [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents
Friday, 06 May 2016 15:34

KAPOW!!

[Editor’s Note: Be sure to follow us on Twitter @thedigitalbits @BillHuntBits and on Facebook here and here. And you can help support The Bits by pre-ordering Blu-rays and other items from Amazon through this link.]

Hey Guys – my apologies, but there’s not going to be a Bits post today. It’s a whole strange deal going on here this afternoon, but the upshot is that I got hit in the head this morning with a really heavy picture frame that fell off the wall. The impact was hard enough that I ended up having to go to the emergency room to deal with a bad gash on my forehead that took 14 stitches to close. So… now I’m sitting here back at home nursing a wicked headache and doctor’s orders to lay off the extreme sports (and pretty much everything else today). Anyway, that’s been my whole day. I certainly hope yours is going better. I’ll be back on Monday with more news and reviews, but I just wanted to jump in quickly here to say thanks for your patience.

Have a great weekend. Peace out!

- Bill Hunt (@BillHuntBits)

Published in My Two Cents

[Editor’s Note: Be sure to follow us on Twitter @thedigitalbits @BillHuntBits and on Facebook here and here. And you can help support The Bits by pre-ordering Blu-rays and other items from Amazon through this link.]

All right... yesterday’s editorial column on the new 4K Ultra HD format was a lot of work as you can imagine, but I’ve been very gratified at the positive reaction to it. If you missed it, you can find it here. I’m going to have more 4K coverage and reviews soon, but I’m just trying to balance it all out with the regular Blu-ray news and whatnot.

On that score, we have a pair of new Blu-ray reviews for you to check out today, including Tim Salmons’ thoughts on The Zero Boys from Arrow Video, as well as Jim Hemphill’s take on In the French Style from Twilight Time. Both titles are now available and are well worth a look.

Also today, in case you missed it when we posted it earlier this week, our own Mario Boucher has delivered a great new Inside Cinema column on the subject of “Duelity” in modern cinema. I think you’ll find it well worth a read, so do check it out here.  [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

[Editor’s Note: Be sure to follow us on Twitter @thedigitalbits @BillHuntBits and on Facebook here and here. And you can help support The Bits by pre-ordering Blu-rays and other items from Amazon through this link.]

This has been an interesting couple of months for me, to say the least. As you may be aware, I’ve just spent the last eight weeks completely immersing myself in all the various ins, outs, and nuances of the new 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray format. I’ve watched disc and after disc, and have reviewed nine of them so far (you can find them here, with more on the way). I’ve put the format’s first player, the Samsung UDB-K8500 (which I’ll review more fully soon, but about which I’ve got some key things to say below) through its paces. I’ve spoken with many of the leading studios, engineers, and content producers (who are really starting to work with the format) about the format. And I’ve come to a number of what I believe are well-informed conclusions about it, based on my nearly two decades of experience doing what I do. [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents
Monday, 02 May 2016 12:37

“Duelity!”

Duelity! Two characters facing off, each with their own agendas. Their goals conflict with one another.

“What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object?”

The battle goes back and forth, an even fight between two worthy opponents. It takes everything the protagonist has to stop the antagonist. And it often doesn’t end as expected. Or without some cost. The protagonist is pushed to the limit. The antagonist is almost justified in his actions, at least from his point of view. The antagonist represents what the protagonist could become but has the fortitude and strong morality not to.  [Read on here…]

Published in Inside Cinema

[Editor’s Note: Be sure to follow us on Twitter @thedigitalbits @BillHuntBits and on Facebook here and here. And you can help support The Bits by pre-ordering Blu-rays and other items from Amazon through this link.]

All right, I’m still working on that 4K coverage. The delay is not from lack of effort, I assure you. Samsung recently updated the UBD-K8500 player’s firmware, so I’ve been working to see what the result is in terms of player performance.

Meanwhile, we do have some great new 4K and Blu-ray news for you today: 20th Century Fox has just officially announced the 6/7 Blu-ray, DVD, Digital HD, and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release of Ridley Scott’s The Martian: Extended Edition (the SRP appears to be $39.99 for either BD or 4K).  [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

[Editor’s Note: Be sure to follow us on Twitter @thedigitalbits @BillHuntBits and on Facebook here and here. And you can help support The Bits by pre-ordering Blu-rays and other items from Amazon through this link.]

All right, we’ve got two more 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray reviews for you this afternoon and they’re both animated: Fox’s The Peanuts Movie and Warner’s The LEGO Movie. Neither is native 4K but the High Dynamic Range really makes a big difference on them – especially on The LEGO Movie – so they’re both worth checking out if you’ve joined the early adopter ranks on this format. I’m going to try to look at a couple Sony titles on the format tomorrow, so do check back. [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

[Editor’s Note: Be sure to follow us on Twitter @thedigitalbits @BillHuntBits and on Facebook here and here. And you can help support The Bits by pre-ordering Blu-rays and other items from Amazon through this link.]

All right, this week is going to be all about 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray here at The Bits. I’ve been watching a ton of discs and working on title reviews, as well as making additional notes on my forthcoming Samsung UBD-K8500 player review and also my general thoughts on my experiences this far with the format. I’ll have new reviews each day, and I’m targeting Thursday for the player review and general thoughts. Sarah and I have had family visiting for the past week, so there’s only so much time in the day. And these things do take time.

Nevertheless, we’re kicking things off today with my look at a pair of titles that should be among the first that any new 4K adopter picks up on the Ultra HD format: Lionsgate’s Sicario and Fox’s The Revenant, both in full native 4K. Sicario also includes Dolby Atmos audio. And while The Revenant doesn’t have object-based audio, its 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio is demo-quality. More importantly, with its gorgeous Oscar-winning cinematography, it is the single best looking title I’ve seen on the format thus far. It’s a real HDR stunner. Check out my reviews (here and here) for more on all that.  [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents
Friday, 22 April 2016 06:00

Pick-Ups for the Week of April 18, 2016

Welcome to a new edition of Pick-Ups!

Thanks for joining me. I’m back again this week to cover some more titles from various genres and labels that we’ve missed along the way, including comedy titles, science fiction, and horror.

Among the offerings will be great titles from the likes of Warner Home Video, Kino Lorber, Shout! and Scream Factory, Scorpion Releasing, and more.

As usual, we’ll be rolling each review out one at a time all week, so be sure to check back for new ones.  [Read on here…]

Published in Dailies
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