History, Legacy & Showmanship

All right, we’ve got a rare Saturday update for you, as there’s some major news to let you all know about since yesterday’s post…

First up, Criterion has announced their October slate of Blu-ray releases, which is set to include the Trilogía de Guillermo del Toro set (Cronos, The Devil’s Backbone, and Pan’s Labyrinth) and Pan’s Labyrinth separately (Cat #838 - Blu-ray and DVD) on 10/11, Richard Linklater’s Boyhood (Cat #839 - Blu-ray and DVD) and Robert Altman’s Short Cuts (Cat #265 - Blu-ray and DVD) on 10/18, and Ermanno Olmi’s The Tree of Wooden Clogs (Cat #840 - Blu-ray and DVD) and Luis García Berlanga’s The Executioner (Cat #841 - Blu-ray and DVD) on 10/25. Note that Criterion is also working on a Blu-ray box set of Linklater’s “Before” Trilogy (Before Sunrise, Before Sunset, and Before Midnight) for release at a later date.  [Read on here…]

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All right, there’s not much in the way of announcement news today, but we do have a couple things to share with you.

First, there’s a brand new official behind-the-scenes video and poster for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story that were shared earlier today at Star Wars Celebration in London. You can see the poster at the left there.

And you can watch the video via YouTube here (be sure to watch it in 1080p)…  [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

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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…]

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[Editor’s Note: Be sure to follow us on Twitter @thedigitalbits @BillHuntBits and on Facebook here and here.]

First things first today: We’re hearing from readers that Samsung’s UBD‑K8500 UHD Blu-ray player is now starting to appear for sale on retailer shelves – including Best Buy – in at least some places around the country. Additionally, Best Buy employees are suggesting in-store that the first UHD Blu-ray titles will start to become available tomorrow (2/11), probably from Lionsgate but maybe also from Fox.

Meanwhile, I’ve now received word from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment that the studio’s first round of UHD Blu-ray titles, including The Martian, Kingsman, Exodus, and Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials, will officially be available starting on Sunday 2/14 at Best Buy stores. Note, however, that it’s possible some stores will begin selling them earlier, or that some stores will not have their stock in yet by then. [Read on here…]

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I just wanted to check in with you all briefly this evening for a rare Sunday update to bring you a bit of Star Wars: The Force Awakens news.

Amazon.com today very briefly listed the street date for Disney's Star Wars: The Force Awakens Blu-ray as 4/5, then pulled the date down again (SRP $39.99 but Amazon discounts it to $19.99). However, Amazon Canada also added the same date and left it up.  [Read on here…] 

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All right, Tim’s just posted his thoughts on Shout!’s recent Pee-Wee’s Playhouse Christmas Special Blu-ray. And I’m making good progress on the X-Files review. Christmas has intruded on my time over the past week, but I’ve finally gotten through all the extra content on the set and so I’m getting there. I can’t stress enough what a mammoth task it is to review this set – there’s just SO much material to go through and check. But I’m working on it. Watch for it soon-ish. I will just quickly say that, given Amazon.com’s current pricing (see here), it probably makes more sense to buy the seasons individually. There’s nothing in the box that you wouldn’t get that way, other than the box itself, and you’ll pay significantly less.  [Read on here…]

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[Editor’s Note: Be sure to like TheDigitalBits.com page on Facebook for breaking news, site updates on the go, discussion with our staff and other readers, giveaways and more!]

The early update is going to be a quick one, as I really want to finish the X-Files Blu-ray review today if possible. So let’s start with a quick rundown of release news...

The following recent films are now all available for Blu-ray and DVD pre-order on Amazon.com (street dates TBA): Star Wars: The Force Awakens (Disney), The Big Short (Universal), Creed (Warner), and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 (Lionsgate). Just click on the titles (or on the temp art below) to pre-order.  [Read on here…]

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[Editor’s Note: Be sure to like TheDigitalBits.com page on Facebook for breaking news, site updates on the go, discussion with our staff and other readers, giveaways and more!]

So... as planned, I saw Star Wars: The Force Awakens last night in Hollywood, at the Arclight’s iconic Cinerama Dome with a great group of friends. Among them were names you’ve heard before here at The Bits (filmmakers, special edition producers, etc), including the likes of Robert Meyer Burnett, Alec Peters, Charles de Lauzirika, Chris Gore, Mary Forrest, Kevin Rubio, Daren Dochterman, Cliff Stephenson (and his fine young mini-Cliff), Dennis Przywara, Diana Kingsbury, my lovely wife Sarah, of course, and various spouses, partners, friends, etc. We gathered for dinner and drinks beforehand, saw the film, then regrouped for more drinks and discussion afterwards, as alpha-geeks are want to do.

First, let me offer you my thoughts on the film itself, 100% without spoilers...  [Read on here…]

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[Editor’s Note: Be sure to like TheDigitalBits.com page on Facebook for breaking news, site updates on the go, discussion with our staff and other readers, giveaways and more!]

All right, today is Star Wars Day here at The Bits! I spent last night watching a marathon of Harmy’s Despecialized version of the Original Trilogy (click here and here for more on that), which I hadn’t done in years so that was a treat. And tonight, my wife and I are joining a group of friends both old and new for a screening of The Force Awakens in Hollywood – the first show at the glorious Cinerama Dome.

So let’s just give you a quick rundown of the release news today…  [Read on here…]

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