We’ve got a couple interesting things for you this afternoon before we get to today’s release news...

First up, reviews... I’ve posted my in-depth thoughts on Tim Burton’s Batman (1989) in 4K Ultra HD here at The Bits and will have reviews of Batman Returns, Batman Forever, and Batman & Robin in 4K over the next few days. The upshot of this first Batman film in 4K is that Warner’s new transfer and Atmos mix are terrific, but the HDR may take a little getting used to and a few of the sound effects have been changed for reasons explained in the review. You can read that here.

Also, Tim has posted a review of Archer: Danger Island – The Complete Season Nine on DVD from Fox and Dennis has looked at Isn’t It Romantic on Blu-ray from Warner.

And some of you may know that this past weekend was the 40th anniversary of Ridley Scott’s original Alien (1979). So our own Michael Coate has posted a new History, Legacy, and Showmanship retrospective column looking back at the film’s theatrical release. It includes a great new roundtable of experts to discuss the film, including authors Chris Barsanti, Paul M. Sammon, and J.W. Rinzler (whose new book The Making of Alien is coming in July). You can read the piece here and if you’re a fan of the film, I think you’ll really enjoy it. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

Alien (like other 1970s films such as Jaws, Superman, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, The Godfather, and Star Wars) was a seminal landmark in the upgrade of shopworn B-movie clichés — monsters, comic book characters, flying saucers, gangsters, Saturday afternoon serials — into major A-movie assets.” — Paul M. Sammon, author of Ridley Scott: The Making of His Movies

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 40th anniversary of the release of Alien, the sci-fi/horror classic about the five-man, two-woman (and one cat) crew of the Nostromo, who got more than they bargained for after investigating a distress signal from a mysterious planet.

Suspense, atmospheric moodiness and Oscar-winning visual effects were among the highlights of Alien, directed by Ridley Scott (Blade Runner, Gladiator) and starring Tom Skerritt (Top Gun), Veronica Cartwright (The Right Stuff), Harry Dean Stanton (Repo Man), John Hurt (The Elephant Man), Ian Holm (Chariots of Fire), Yaphet Kotto (Live and Let Die), and Sigourney Weaver (Ghostbusters) as Ellen Ripley. [Read on here...]

2001 is Kubrick’s crowning achievement. It’s the movie that launched him into ’superstar’ status that placed him alongside the likes of Welles, Bergman, Fellini, Kurosawa, Hitchcock, Ford...” — film historian and author Raymond Benson

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the golden anniversary of the release of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Stanley Kubrick’s acclaimed science-fiction adventure starring Keir Dullea and Gary Lockwood.

Featuring groundbreaking visual effects and memorable usage of classical music (and decades of analysis), 2001 premiered 50 years ago this week, and for the occasion The Bits features a compilation of statistics and box office data that places the movie’s performance in context; passages from vintage film reviews; and a reference/historical listing of the movie’s limited-market 70-millimeter and roadshow engagements. [Read on here...]

All right, we’ve got big news for you today. We’ve been saying this was coming for quite a while now here at The Bits, given that this is the film’s 35th anniversary year and that its long-awaited sequel was coming soon to theaters, but Warner Bros Home Entertainment has finally made it official: Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner: The Final Cut is coming to the 4K Ultra HD format on 9/5.

The Ultra HD release will include the previous Blu-ray edition (you can read our epic and in-depth review of that package here) in addition to the 4K disc, with its 7+ hours of bonus features (we’re waiting to see the exact disc configuration to determine if the alternate cuts will be included or if it’s just The Final Cut with extras), as well as a digital copy. The audio will be Dolby Atmos. There’s no word whether Dolby Vision HDR is included or not yet (there was no mention of it in the press release). The package will sell for an SRP of $44.95. [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

“Even after decades of imitators, bigger budgets and more advanced technology, Blade Runner still stands high as a groundbreaking, unparalleled masterpiece.” — Dangerous Days: Making Blade Runner documentarian Charles de Lauzirika

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 35th anniversary of the release of Blade Runner, Ridley Scott’s neo-noir sci-fi adaptation of Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, starring Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young and Edward James Olmos. [Read on here...]

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