My Two Cents
Thursday, 05 May 2016 19:03

Shout Selects delivers Buckaroo Banzai, plus Elstree 1976, Samsung’s UBD-K8500 is UHD Premium & MUCH more

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[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…]

And in honor of Star Wars Day yesterday, we’d like to direct you all to enjoy Michael Coate’s in-depth History, Legacy & Showmanship retrospectives on Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi. Be sure to give them a look.

In announcement news today, Shout! Factory has just announced a new Shout Selects line of premium Blu-ray special edition titles, the first of which is set to be The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the Eighth Dimension: Collectors Edition and John Carpenter’s Elvis on 8/16. Those will be followed by the Midnight Run: Collector’s Edition on 8/23, and (before the end of 2016) Roadhouse and Bill & Ted’s Most Excellent Collection. The latter will be a 3-disc BD set including Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure and Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey, plus a bonus disc. The extras on The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai have yet to be announced (though they’ll include “a comprehensive retrospective featuring brand-new interviews with members of the cast and crew and more”), but here’s the cover artwork. You can click on it to pre-order the disc on

The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai (Blu-ray Disc)    John Carpenter's Elvis (Blu-ray Disc)    Invasion of the Body Snatchers: Collector's Edition (Blu-ray Disc)

Shout and Scream have also set their Invasion of the Body Snatchers: Collector’s Edition Blu-ray for release on 8/2, along with Red Sonja: Queen of Plagues.

By the way, it appears that the street date for Shout’s forthcoming Nighthawks Blu-ray, which had been set for release on 7/19, is now being delayed until 10/18. The reason for the delay is that “new opportunities have arisen for bonus content,” which is fine by me. Anything that makes the release better is worth taking the extra time for. Thanks to all the Bits readers who e-mailed us with this news.

Meanwhile, Syfy and Universal have set The Magicians: Season One for Blu-ray and DVD release on 7/19. Universal has also set the Studio Ghibli animated film Only Yesterday for Blu-ray and DVD release on 7/5.

A quick heads-up: Best Buy is now taking pre-orders on the retailer-exclusive Blu-ray release of Universal’s The ’Burbs, The Great Outdoors, The Money Pit, and The Dream Team, all due on 5/24. We suspect they’ll go into wide release later in 2016. is also taking pre-orders on a retailer-exclusive Blu-ray version of Sony’s Labyrinth complete with special packaging – see here. SRP is $75.99.

And Amazon is now taking pre-orders on the TBA Blu-ray release of Warner and DC’s Supergirl: The Complete First Season as well. See the cover artwork below.

Also today, Kino Lorber has revealed a number of new titles they’re working on for Blu-ray release in the months ahead, including Rawhide (1951) and The Mark of Zorro (1940) on 8/2, Modesty Blaise (1966) on 8/23, The Enemy Below (1957) on 9/20, Cabo Blanco (1980) and The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes’ Smarter Brother (1975) on 9/27, The Earth Dies Screaming (1964) and Chosen Survivors (1974) on 10/4, and Witchcraft (1964) on 10/11. Also revealed as “coming soon” to Blu-ray are Man on Fire (1987), Boy on a Dolphin (1957), The Laughing Policeman (1973), Wolf Lake (1980), and 100 Rifles (1969).

Synapse Films has set Michael Felsher’s Just Desserts: The Making of Creepshow – Special Edition for Blu-ray release on 7/12. We’re really looking forward to this one.

And here’s something outstanding: FilmRise Releasing and MVD Entertainment Group have just announced the DVD release of Jon Spira’s amazing Elstree 1976 documentary on 6/28! [Editor’s Note: Amazon shows a BD version too, but that appears to be distributed by FilmRise and not MVD.] The documentary looks at the lives of many of the people who played masked and/or secondary characters in the original Star Wars film (think Vader, Boba Fett, Greedo, Stormtroopers, background Rebel pilots), through new interviews with them. A limited theatrical run (in NY and LA) starts tomorrow. Meanwhile, here’s a look at the trailer...

Finally today, a little bit of follow-up to yesterday’s column on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray: Samsung’s Ultra HD Blu-ray player, the UBD-K8500, has just officially been certified as Ultra HD Premium by the UHD Alliance. This makes the UBD-K8500 the very first Ultra HD player sold in the States to be so certified. As I said in my column yesterday: “Samsung’s UDB-K8500 is the most affordable, most capable, and most stable entry-level player for any new format I’ve seen yet. At a $399 entry-level price point, Samsung’s UDB-K8500 is a steal. And Samsung should be damn proud of it.” I stand by that, and so apparently does the UHD Alliance. You can order the player now here on (or by clicking on the picture below)...

samsung udbk8500 largeAll right, we’ll leave you with a look at more new Blu-ray cover artwork (with clickable pre-order links if available)...

Supergirl: Season One (Blu-ray Disc)    Just Desserts: The Making of Creepshow (Blu-ray Disc)    Elstree 1976 (DVD)

The Magicians: Season One (Blu-ray Disc)    Red Sonya: Queen of Plagues (Blu-ray Disc)    Only Yesterday (Blu-ray Disc)

Back tomorrow with more news updates and reviews. Stay tuned!

- Bill Hunt (@BillHuntBits)


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