First things first today... I’ll be at WonderCon in Anaheim, CA tomorrow afternoon to participate in an interesting panel discussion with friends. It’s at 5PM in Room 207 and it’s called Everyone’s a Critic: Being a Journalist in the Online Age. Here’s the panel description:
Bill Watters (Bleeding Cool), Mary Anne Butler (Aggressive Comix), Jeff Bond (Geek Monthly), Bill Hunt (The Digital Bits), Alexandra August (Comic Book Resources), and Thomas Parham (APU) discuss the expansion of journalism over the past decade, from the rise of citizen journalism to blogging to vloggers, podcasters, and online-only news sources. This panel of nationally known writers and hosts will talk about the roles new media play between their readers and the industries and communities they serve, varying levels of informality versus classic ideas of professionalism, show-specific outlets versus general news sites, moving from hobbyist to being a professional, and more. Friday March 31, 2017 – 5:00pm-6:00pm – Room 207
It’s an interesting topic and I think it’ll be a good discussion so I hope to see you there or elsewhere around the show! [Read on here…]
Before we get started today, my review of Warner’s Fantastic Beast and Where to Find Them in 4K Ultra HD went live last night, so be sure to check that out if you’re interested. It’s pretty good. It’s no Harry Potter, but the film has its charms and has real potential.
Also, our own Russell Hammond has just posted the weekly update of the Release Dates & Artwork section, featuring all the latest Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD cover artwork and Amazon.com pre-order links. The section also now features the update to sort the titles by format, including by 4K Ultra HD. As always, anytime you order or pre-order literally anything at all through our Amazon links, you’re helping to support our work here at The Bits and we surely do appreciate it. [Read on here…]
All right, we’ve got another quick one for you today, as I’m still working on reviews. My look at Warner’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them 4K Ultra HD review will be up shortly and I’ll update this link when it’s posted (update: here it is). Meanwhile, we also have a new review from Tim Salmons, who looks at Scream Factory’s new Firestarter: Collector’s Edition on regular Blu-ray.
Also today, we have a couple of great new feature columns... Bud Elder has chimed in with a new View from the Cheap Seats and he’s pretty sure he’s figured out what’s wrong with movies these days. Do give it a look. Not to be outdone, our old friend Dr. Adam Jahnke has turned in new Jahnke’s Electric Theatre Special column today here at The Bits, in which he says something that’s badly needed saying for a while now. You’ll find that in Open Along Edge: Netflix’s DVD Problem. Enjoy! [Read on here…]
All right, this is just a quick update for this afternoon and it’s all 4K. The reason is that I’m near the end of a big 4K Ultra HD review marathon of Warner’s new Harry Potter titles, which all street tomorrow. So over the weekend I’ve posted reviews of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1, and just a short time ago I posted my review of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2. For those of you who may be wondering why Warner released only the four later film in the series in 4K Ultra HD, it’s likely because – being the most recent – they required the least amount of work to prepare for the format, and they were all directed by David Yates, which makes the mastering approval process faster and easier. The first four films in this series are all coming to 4K Ultra HD as well, either later this year in time for the holidays or next year (it remains to be seen). Also for those of you who may be wondering: No, they do NOT have Dolby Vision. But they do look pretty terrific, with modest improvements in resolution and sound (DTS:X) but the HDR does make a big difference here. It really brings these films to life. [Read on here…]
We’re kicking things off today with more new disc reviews. Tim has turned in his thoughts on Scream Factory’s new RoboCop 2: Collector’s Edition and RoboCop 3: Collector’s Edition, both well worth a look on Blu-ray. I’ve also added my thoughts on Justin Kurzel’s Assassin’s Creed in 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray format from 20th Century Fox. It’s a better film than I expected and, more importantly, it’s an absolutely reference-quality 4K release. So if you’ve upgraded to the format, you definitely don’t want to miss it.
Now then, as expected, the FedEx man just showed up at the door with all four of Warner’s new Harry Potter 4K titles, as well as Fantastic Beasts 4K, and the BBC’s Planet Earth II 4K. So I’m going to dive right in and start reviewing those ASAP. Watch for them to be posted starting tomorrow. There are not enough hours in the day, let me tell you. [Read on here…]
We’ve got two more new reviews for you today... Tim has checked out Abel Ferrara’s The Driller Killer on Blu-ray from Arrow Video, and I’ve given the new Shout! Select Blu-ray of John Milius’ Red Dawn (1984) a look for you today as well. Both titles are worth checking out.
Additionally, we’ve just posted the weekly update of the Release Dates & Artwork section with all the latest Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD cover artwork and Amazon.com pre-order links. Anytime you order literally anything from Amazon in the same session after clicking through to them from any of our links, you’re helping to support our work here at The Bits and we surely do appreciate it.
Also, as I mentioned on Monday, you’re all invited to follow me (Bits editor Bill Hunt) personally on Facebook and Twitter if you’d like, in addition to our regular Bits Facebook and Twitter pages. Just so you know. [Read on here…]
Just a quick post for you today: I’ve just posted my thoughts on Peter Berg’s Patriots Day on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray. The disc is now available from Lionsgate. It’s a good solid film.
In announcement news today, Syfy and Universal have set Dark Matter: Season Two for Blu-ray and DVD release on 6/13.
Universal has also set The Last Kingdom: Season Two for release on Blu-ray and DVD on 5/30. [Read on here…]
Tim has posted a pair of new Blu-ray reviews today, featuring his thoughts on Lew Lehman’s The Pit from Kino Lorber and Jeffrey Delman’s Deadtime Stories from Scream Factory. Both are worth a look for fans, so do check them out.
I’m also going to be working on more new 4K reviews this afternoon, so watch for them to be posted here on the site later today and tomorrow morning. We’ll mention them here in tomorrow’s My Two Cents column.
By the way, I wanted to invite you all to follow The Bits on Facebook and Twitter if you don’t already. More importantly, I wanted to invite you to follow me personally (Bill Hunt) on Facebook and Twitter, if you’d like as well. Do keep in mind, however, that on my own personal pages I tend to talk more about other things of interest to me than just Blu-ray, 4K, and DVD specifically – films, great books, science topics, spaceflight, history, technology, and the like. You’re always welcome to communicate with me that way, particularly via Facebook Messenger, as e-mail these days seems to be inundated with junk and SPAM. Maybe I’ll see you there. [Read on here…]
All right, we’ve got a bunch of interesting release news today here at The Bits…
The big news today is that 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment has just set Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and Rise of the Planet of the Apes for 4K Ultra HD release on 6/13 (SRP $39.99 each). There’s no word yet on extras, but presumably they’ll include the previous Blu-ray editions with all of those extras. This certainly confirms what we already knew, which is that War for the Planet of the Apes is going to be released on the format as well later this year.
Also on the 4K front today, Universal has just set Despicable Me and Despicable Me 2 for release on the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray format on 6/6 (SRP $39.98 each). As you may remember, we first revealed that these titles were coming to the format back on 2/14 (you can see that post here). [Read on here…]
Today we’ve got a new 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray review for you. I’ve taken a look at Morten Tyldum’s Passengers from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. It’s not a particularly great science fiction film, but it’s gorgeous to look at and both the 4K disc and the Blu-ray 3D in the package are first rate A/V demo material. Do give that a look here.
In announcement news today, BBC Home Entertainment has finally made the Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD release of Planet Earth II official for 3/28 (SRP $44.95, $35.99, and $59.99 respectively). The series is narrated by the legendary Sir David Attenborough. From the press release “bonus content includes Planet Earth Diaries, a look behind the scenes with each episode’s production team, revealing the astounding challenges they encountered and their incredible experiences while filming Planet Earth II. For DVD and Blu-ray, these are 10-minute bonus clips at the end of each episode and for the 4K UHD, it will be a 54 minute disc accompanying the series.” The UHD will present the series in native 4K with HDR, though the sound is 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio only. [Read on here…]