Venom, Smallfoot & The Nun street dates, plus German uncut Psycho update, and join the campaign to save FilmStruckby Bill Hunt
We’ve got a little bit of release news for you today, along with some reviews and a few good section updates here at the site. Let’s get to the reviews first...
Tim has just posted his in-depth look at Powerhouse Films and Indicator’s terrific new William Castle at Columbia: Volume One – Limited Edition Blu-ray set, which includes The Tingler, 13 Ghosts, Homicidal, and Mr. Sardonicus. Also now available are Dennis’ review of The Farmer’s Daughter from Kino Lorber Studio Classics, and David’s look at Barbershop, Barbershop 2: Back in Business, and Beauty Shop from MVD Entertainment.
Also here at The Bits today, we’ve posted the weekly update of the Release Dates & Artwork section with all of the latest Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD cover artwork and Amazon.com pre-order links. As always, whenever you order literally anything from Amazon after clicking to them through our links, you’re helping to support our work here at the site and we appreciate it! [Read on here...]
War of the Worlds/It’s a Wonderful Life in 4K digital only, Hirschfeld art exhibit/sale & Nolan wins DEG Vanguard awardby Bill Hunt
We’ve got a couple things for you today, starting with a new batch of Blu-ray reviews...
First up is Tim’s take on Steve Mitchell’s King Cohen documentary from La-La Land Entertainment, along with his look at John Landis’ Schlock from Arrow Video. It continues with Jason’s take on Molly from Artsploitation Films and David’s thoughts on Welcome to the Dollhouse from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
Now then... while we’re talking Blu-ray discs, we’re getting the first reports from Bits readers that their Revenge of the Creature/The Creature Walks Among Us replacement discs are starting to arrive from Universal, replacing the identical defective discs in their Universal Classic Monsters 30-Film Collection and Creature from the Black Lagoon: Complete Legacy Collection Blu-ray sets. So if you’ve requested a replacement from the studio (via the instructions we’ve posted at the end of those reviews) keep an eye on your mail, folks. [Read on here...]
Hey guys... we’re working on a last few server upgrades here at the site today, so today’s update isn’t going to be a big one. But we do have something important we wanted to share...
First though, we’ve posted our review of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment’s new Superman: The Movie in 4K Ultra HD, which streets today. The film has quite simply never looked better than it does here in 4K, but it still looks like a film from 1978 shot with diffusion filters, so I have a feeling this is one title the longtime fans and true cinephiles are going to appreciate more than the average 4K consumer who may be just chasing pixel counts. In any case, enjoy the review.
Don’t forget, reviews of 2001: A Space Odyssey, The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions, and The Matrix Trilogy in 4K Ultra HD are all up here at the site now, along with our review of Batman: The Animated Series on Blu-ray. More reviews are on the way later this week. [Read on here...]
Batman: TAS review on the way, new BD reviews, Michael Coate’s Night of the Living Dead retrospective & Happy Halloween!by Bill Hunt
I’m still working on that Batman: The Complete Animated Series Blu-ray review, but let me tell you... it’s terrific! The A/V quality is amazing, with the original film elements for each episode newly scanned and presented in HD and the stereo mixes presented in lossless DTS-HD Master Audio. [Editor’s Note: The review is finished and you can read it here now. Enjoy!]
Nearly all of the extras from the previous DVD box set carry over and there’s a great new 98-minute retrospective documentary, Heart of Batman, included as well. I hope to have the review up later today - there’s just a lot to go through. I’ll add the link here when it goes live.
Meanwhile here at the site today, we have a new History, Legacy and Showmanship column from our very own Michael Coate, who presents a retrospective look back at George A. Romero’s original zombie classic Night of the Living Dead in honor of the film’s 50th anniversary this month. [Read on here...]
“Night of the Living Dead is a classic that has inspired countless imitators, and spawned a sub-genre that continues to be exploited today in film, television, books and video games.” – John Scoleri, author of Latent Images: Night of the Living Dead
The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the golden anniversary of the release of Night of the Living Dead, George A. Romero’s influential and franchise-spawning horror film about a group of characters trapped in a Pennsylvania farmhouse who are stalked by flesh-eating zombies.
Night of the Living Dead – co-written by John Russo and featuring Judith O’Dea, Duane Jones, Marilyn Eastman, Karl Hardman, Judith Riley, and Keith Wayne – opened fifty years ago this autumn, and for the occasion The Bits features a Q&A with author and film historian John Scoleri.
John Scoleri is the author of Latent Images: Night of the Living Dead (Dreams and Visions Press, 2019), and several books on artist Ralph McQuarrie, including The Art of Ralph McQuarrie: Archives (Dreams and Visions Press, 2015). He was co-editor (with Peter Enfantino and Robert Morrish) of The Scream Factory Magazine (Deadline Press, 1989-1997) as well as the 600+ page greatest-hits collection, The Best of The Scream Factory (Cemetery Dance, 2018). [Read on here...]
2001: A Space Odyssey 4K reviewed & more, plus Kin, The Predator, and The House with the Clock in its Walls announced for BD/4Kby Bill Hunt
All right, today’s post is another quickie for the reasons anticipated – namely I’m about to start working on my review of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment’s Batman: The Complete Animated Series on Blu-ray. With luck, I hope to have it up by the end of the day today or early tomorrow morning.
In the meantime, I posted my in-depth review of Warner Bros.’ 2001: A Space Odyssey on 4K Ultra HD yesterday here at The Bits. The upshot is this is fully remastered and properly color-graded, unlike the recent Nolan theatrical IMAX presentations, and the Blu-ray is fully remastered too. The disc also includes Dolby Vision HDR and it has a new 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio mix that represents the original 6-track 70 mm theatrical audio too. It’s really a fantastic release, so be sure to check that out. Note that the end of the review features significant technical details on the remastering process (from a brief prepared by the studio) shared with permission. Many of you will find it interesting.
In the meantime, we have a few additional Blu-ray reviews for you today from Tim and our old friend Dr. Adam Jahnke, including Scream Factory’s Creepshow, The Howling (Steelbook), and Halloween II and III (Steelbooks). Enjoy! [Read on here...]
Our reviews of Matrix Trilogy, Reloaded, Revolutions 4K & Uni Monsters 30-film are live, 2001 4K & Batman: TAS are on the way!by Bill Hunt
This is just a quick update to say that there’s going to be no news post today. But the reason is a good one.
First though, over the weekend I posted my in-depth reviews of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment’s The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions, and The Matrix Trilogy in 4K Ultra HD here at The Bits.
Like The Matrix in UHD before it, these sequels arrive on the format in fine quality with impressively upgraded image quality and reference-quality Dolby Atmos audio mixes.
They’re definitely recommended, though with the qualification that a few features from the previous The Ultimate Matrix Collection Blu-ray set do not carry over. The details are in the review. [Read on here...]
Sadly, the news today is dominated by the announcement that Turner Classic Movies and Criterion’s FilmStruck streaming service for well-curated classic, arthouse, indie, hard-to-find, and cult movies will be shutting down on 11/29 and has already stopped accepting new subscribers. You can read more here and here.
This is apparently driven the desire by AT&T, which recently purchased Time Warner, to streamline its business by cutting niche services. Though FilmStuck was wildly popular with cinephiles, the audience was small compared to the kind of mass market profit-making a modern media conglom-o-monster prefers. Said Turner and WB Digital Media in a statement today:
“We’re incredibly proud of the creativity and innovations produced by the talented and dedicated teams who worked on FilmStruck over the past two years. While FilmStruck has a very loyal fanbase, it remains largely a niche service. We plan to take key learnings from FilmStruck to help shape future business decisions in the direct-to-consumer space and redirect this investment back into our collective portfolios.” [Read on here...]
2001 4K officially delayed to 11/20, plus Batman: TAS and Thing from Another World updates & new Blu-ray reviewsby Bill Hunt
All right, sorry we’ve been a little low-key here at The Bits this week. We’ve been spending our time in one of two ways:
First, we’re recovering from our recent server and Russian bot issues and doing some upgrading and adjusting to make sure everything is working smoothly going forward.
Second, we’re reviewing Blu-ray and 4K titles like mad!
Today, we’ve posted my looks at Universal’s Invisible Man, The: Complete Legacy Collection and Creature from the Black Lagoon: Complete Legacy Collection. Tim has also delivered his thoughts on Maximum Overdrive from Lionsgate’s Vestron Video Collector’s Series. David has offered his thoughts on the Japanese cult classic Battle in Outer Space from Sony. And Dennis has turned in his review of the new City Slickers: Collector’s Edition from Shout! Factory’s Shout Select line-up. Enjoy! [Read on here...]
Schindler’s List 4K preorders, Warner Archive’s Thing from Another World BD, a UK-only Disney 55-Film BD box & moreby Bill Hunt
The big news today isn’t quite official yet, but we expected the press release at any time: Universal will release Steven Spielberg’s Schindler’s List: 25th Anniversary Edition on 4K Ultra HD on 12/18, as we’ve been saying for a while now. In addition to a new 4K scan, the audio will be English Dolby Atmos, with HDR10 high dynamic range. The previous Blu-ray edition will also be included with DTS-HD MA audio.
There’s a new retrospective featurette: Schindler’s List: 25 Years Later, featuring video of a panel and Q&A with Spielberg, Liam Neeson, Ben Kingsley, Embeth Davidtz, and Caroline Goodall recorded at the Tribeca Film Festival earlier this year. You also get the previous extras and a Movies Anywhere Digital copy. And here’s the deal: The title is now available for pre-order on Amazon.com at this link. You can see the official cover artwork to the left and also below.
Also newly available for pre-order on Blu-ray and 4K are Night School (with a street date of 1/1/19), Halloween (2018), First Man, and The House with the Clock in its Walls. We’ve updated The 4K Ultra HD Release List here at The Bits accordingly. [Read on here...]