My Two Cents
Thursday, 18 February 2021 17:52

New Blu-ray, DVD & 4K release news, plus World of Wong Kar Wai details & The Muppet Show on Disney+ tomorrow!

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We’ve got a few interesting things to tell you about today here at The Bits...

First though, an update: We’re continuing to work on more Blu-ray and 4K reviews here. But poor Tim, our reviews editor, has been out of commission these last few days—he lives down in Texas in ground zero of all the not having power, water, or heat due to this big winter freeze. The good news is, he’s back online today, a few burst water pipes worse for wear. So he’ll be checking in again with reviews and on social media over the next few days.

Meanwhile, we have some release news to report this afternoon, beginning with this: Shout! Factory is releasing Ping Zhang’s animated feature film The Legend of Hei on Blu-ray and DVD on 5/11. A Digital release is expected on 4/20.

Corinth Films is releasing Little England on DVD and Digital on 3/16.

Capelight Films will release Fukushima 50 on Digital and VOD on 3/5. [Read on here...]

Paramount is releasing a John Wayne Essential 14-Movie Collection on 5/11 but on DVD only. The set will include Hondo (1953), Island in the Sky (1953), The High and the Mighty (1954), The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962), Hatari! (1962), Donovan’s Reef (1963), McLintock! (1963), In Harm’s Way (1965), The Sons of Katie Elder (1965), El Dorado (1966), True Grit (1969), Rio Lobo (1970), Big Jake (1971), and The Shootist (1976).

ClassicFlix has set The Little Rascals: The ClassicFlix Restorations, Volume 1 for release on Blu-ray on 6/1. The set will include the first 11 Our Gang sound shorts produced by Hal Roach from 1929 and 1930.

And Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has set Tate Taylor’s Breaking News in Yuba County for release on Blu-ray and DVD on 3/23.

On the 4K front, Arrow Video finally has their long-awaited 2-disc limited edition of Django (with Texas Adios on Blu-ray) coming on 4K Ultra HD on 5/25. The 4K disc will include Dolby Vision HDR with DTS-HD Master Audio.

Lionsgate has set Dirty Dancing for release as a 4K Ultra HD Steelbook edition on 4/27, with HDR10 and DTS-HD Master Audio.

And per retail sources, it’s looking like Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release their new “IMAX” edition of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice on 4K Ultra HD on 3/23. That’s the same day they have Godzilla (2014) coming to the format. Per our own sources, the aspect ratio will vary between 2.35 and 1.43 (the latter for the film’s IMAX sequences). The audio should be Dolby Atmos, like the original version.

In other news today, Criterion has updated the list of features to be included on their World of Wong Kar Wai 7-disc Blu-ray collection on 3/23. Look for:

  • New 4K digital restorations of Chungking Express, Fallen Angels, Happy Together, In the Mood for Love and 2046, approved by director Wong Kar Wai, with 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtracks
  • New 4K digital restorations of As Tears Go By and Days of Being Wild, with uncompressed monaural soundtracks
  • New program in which Wong answers questions submitted, at the invitation of the director, by authors André Aciman and Jonathan Lethem; filmmakers Sofia Coppola, Rian Johnson, Lisa Joy, and Chloé Zhao; cinematographers Philippe Le Sourd and Bradford Young; and filmmakers and founders/creative directors of Rodarte Kate and Laura Mulleavy
  • Alternate version of Days of Being Wild featuring different edits of the film’s prologue and final scenes, on home video for the first time
  • Hua yang de nian hua, a 2000 short film by Wong
  • Extended version of The Hand, a 2004 short film by Wong, available in the U.S. for the first time
  • Interview and “cinema lesson” with Wong from the 2001 Cannes Film Festival
  • Three making-of documentaries, featuring interviews with Wong; actors Maggie Cheung Man Yuk, Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Chang Chen, Faye Wong, and Ziyi Zhang; and others
  • Episode of the television series Moving Pictures from 1996 featuring Wong and cinematographer Christopher Doyle
  • Interviews from 2002 and 2005 with Doyle
  • Excerpts from a 1994 British Film Institute audio interview with Cheung on her work in Days of Being Wild
  • Program from 2012 on In the Mood for Love’s soundtrack
  • Press conference for In the Mood for Love from the 2000 Toronto International Film Festival
  • Deleted scenes, alternate endings, behind-the-scenes footage, a promo reel, music videos, and trailers
  • PLUS: Deluxe packaging, including a perfect-bound, French-fold book featuring lavish photography, an essay by critic John Powers, a director’s note, and six collectible art prints

You can see a promotional trailer for the set here.

Also, don’t forget that ALL FIVE SEASONS of Jim Henson’s original The Muppet Show (1976-81) are going to be available for streaming on Disney+ tomorrow. If all goes as usual, the series should be available starting at Midnight Pacific time. As many of you know, the final two seasons of the show have never been available before on any home video format due to the complicated music rights issues at the time (and only the first three seasons were ever released on DVD). So this will mark the first chance for many of you to revisit the show uncut since the original broadcasts. Here’s a little teaser...

Finally today, given the current difficult economic times of this past year (which have unfortunately crushed online advertising and affiliate sales income), we ask that if you believe in and appreciate the work we do here at The Digital Bits, please consider making a donation to the site via PayPal (click here or the button below). Every little bit makes a difference in terms of helping us to keep the site going strong, and we really do appreciate it very much. And thank you again to every single one of you who have donated in the past, and to all those of you who support our work in other ways. We’re very grateful to have all of you as readers.

CLICK HERE to BACK THE BITS in our fight to preserve Physical Media

And that’s all for today other than to say congratulations to NASA and JPL for successfully landing their Perseverance rover on the surface of Mars this morning! I can’t wait to see all the great pictures and video they’re going to release in the weeks and months ahead, not to mention all of the science and discoveries that are yet to be made. The rover even brought along a little mini helicopter, so it’s going to be interesting to see what happens with it.

We’ll leave you with a look at the cover artwork for a trio of the titles mentioned above and more, with pre-order links...

Django (4K Ultra HD) The World of Wong Kar Wai (Blu-ray Disc) The Little Rascals: The ClassicFlix Restorations, Volume 1 (Blu-ray Disc)

Stay tuned...!

(You can follow Bill on social media at these links: Twitter and Facebook)


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