My Two Cents

All right, today’s a bit of a catch-up day here at The Bits...

First, Tim has reviewed a trio of Blu-ray titles for you, including Kino’s Moving Violations, Grindhouse Releasing’s Gone with the Pope, and Arrow Academy’s Terror in a Texas Town. Do give them a look.

Now then... this will be our last post until Monday, as I’m headed down to Comic-Con in San Diego tomorrow. For the record, I’m scheduled to be on TWO panels at the Con this weekend.

First, I’m moderating the Breaking News from Shout! Factory and Scream Factory panel tomorrow (Friday) at 8-9 PM in Room 4 at the San Diego Convention Center (details here):

“Join Shout! Factory’s Jeremy Whitham (Development Director), Brian Ward (Senior Director of Blu-ray and DVD Production), and Jeff Nelson (Senior Marketing Director) as they make special announcements and unveil exclusive sneak peeks. Moderated by Bill Hunt of The Digital Bits.” [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, we’ve a LOT of ground to cover today: Tons of news and announcements, plus some good stuff here at The Bits for you too. Let’s start with the latter...

Tim has turned in new reviews of Meteor (1979) on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber and also Dave Parker’s It Watches on DVD from Uncork’d Entertainment. Both are worth your time. And if you like It Watches, be sure to check out Dave’s Sweet Tooth from Tales of Halloween, as well The Hills Run Red and The Dead Reborn too.

Also today, in honor of the late George Romero, I wanted to share a special feature we did here at The Bits way back in 2001: Telling Tales with John and George. I had the honor of spending an afternoon with George and filmmaker John Harrison (Frank Herbert’s Dune) while they recorded the audio commentary for Paramount’s Tales from the Darkside: The Movie DVD. It really gives you a good sense, I think, of who George was as a person: Truly one of the kindest, warmest, and most engaging people I’ve had the pleasure to meet in my 30+ years in this industry. I hope you’ll enjoy it. [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

[Editor’s Note: This feature was first published on the original Bits website back on November 01, 2001. We republish it here for the enjoyment of those who many not have seen it before. We’d like to dedicate it to the memory of our friend George A. Romero.]

You know how they say it never rains in California? Well, they lie. What they mean to say is that it never rains in California... unless you really need to be somewhere. But they also say something about April showers, right? So on this appropriately gloomy morning in April, I’m racing up the 405 freeway in a heavy downpour, running late for an appointment. But not just any appointment. I’ve been invited to sit in on the audio commentary recording session for Paramount’s new Tales from the Darkside: The Movie DVD, with its director, John Harrison, and screenwriter, the legendary George Romero. Who could pass a chance like that up? Certainly not me. [Read on here...]

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“In many ways, RoboCop was ahead of its time, foreshadowing a future that is with us now. The Reagan-era gap between rich and poor has grown ever wider, with the 1% using an increasingly militarized police force to protect gentrified communities while other parts of cities have become postindustrial wastelands, abandoned to crime and drugs. RoboCop himself, a man made over into a machine by an unfeeling corporation, can be seen as a literal example of American workers being replaced by robots.” — Film scholar and Paul Verhoeven author Douglas Keesey

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 30th anniversary of the release of RoboCop, Paul Verhoeven’s (Soldier of Orange, Basic Instinct) franchise-inspiring and Saturn- and Oscar-winning satirical action film starring Peter Weller (The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai, Leviathan) and Nancy Allen (Dressed to Kill, Blow Out). [Read on here...]

All right, no official update yet from Disney on the HDR on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 4K. There are reports that Dolby is claiming Dolby Vision will only be on the 4K streaming version, but we haven’t been able to confirm that yet. So stay tuned.

Disney has however, officially just announced (at D23) that they’re releasing Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales on Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD on 10/3, with the Digital release due on 9/19. We know that it will have HDR (so HDR-10, no word specifically of Dolby Vision) and that it will include Dolby Atmos audio. “Bonus material includes a collection of behind-the-scenes, making-of stories, including a conversation with directors Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg; a sit-down with the two young newcomers who play Henry and Carina; the secrets behind the menacing new villain, Salazar, and his ferocious ghost sharks; an on-set visit with Jack’s first mate from all five films; a chat with Sir Paul McCartney who appears as Uncle Jack; and a discussion about the franchise’s legacy; along with hilarious bloopers, deleted scenes and memories from producer Jerry Bruckheimer’s photo diary.” No other details are yet available. You can see the cover art at left.

Meanwhile, we have two new Blu-ray reviews for you today: Tim has checked out Vinegar Syndrome’s Psycho Cop Returns and Psychic Killer, both worth your time if you’re a fan of the genre. Do check them out. [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, we’ve got a couple of things for you today, including a little bit of follow-up on this Disney/Guardians Vol 2 4K Dolby Vision thing. More on that in a moment...

First, Michael Coate has a great new History, Legacy & Showmanship column for you today that celebrates Sir Roger Moore and the 40th Anniversary of the classic Bond installment The Spy Who Loved Me. Michael is joined by another fine roundtable of Bond experts to discuss the film and I think you’ll really enjoy reading what they have to say. So you’ll find that here.

Now then... some announcement news: Universal has officially set The Mummy (2017) for Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD release on 9/12, with the Digital HD release expected on 8/22. [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

The Spy Who Loved Me was a celebration the moment it premiered. It’s not so much a movie or a story as it is a wondrous tour through the exotic, sexy, dangerous, and beautiful world of Roger Moore’s 007.” — 007 historian John Cork

The Digital Bits is pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 40th anniversary of the release of The Spy Who Loved Me, the tenth (official) cinematic James Bond adventure and, arguably, the fan favorite of the Roger Moore era.

As with our previous 007 articles (see You Only Live Twice, Diamonds Are Forever, Casino Royale, For Your Eyes Only, Thunderball, GoldenEye, A View to a Kill, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Goldfinger, and 007… Fifty Years Strong), The Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship continue the series with this retrospective featuring a Q&A with an esteemed group of James Bond scholars, documentarians and historians who discuss the virtues, shortcomings and legacy of The Spy Who Loved Me. [Read on here...]

All right, let’s get this out of the way right off the top: Yesterday, when Disney finally made the official announcement that James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 will arrive on 4K Ultra HD (as well as Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, and DVD) on 8/22, we made a point to contact the studio to confirm that the 4K Ultra HD disc would include Dolby Vision HDR. And we were assured that it would. So we added that update to our report.

Some context here: Our sources within the studio and around the industry have long told us that one of the reasons Disney has taken their time embracing the 4K format was that they’re bullish about Dolby Vision, and wanted to wait until more hardware manufacturers and consumers had embraced it. They wanted more Dolby Vision-capable displays and players out there in the hands of consumers. [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, we knew it was coming but now Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment has just made it official: James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is officially coming to Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD on 8/22, while the Digital HD release will happen on 8/8. Extras on the Blu-ray editions will include the 4-part The Making of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 documentary, audio commentary with director James Gunn, 4 deleted scenes, the Visionary Intro featurette, a Guardians Inferno music video with David Hasselhoff, and a Gag Reel. There will also be digital exclusive features, including 3 Scene Breakdowns and a Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: Breakout! Disneyland ride preview. The 4K Ultra HD version will feature English Dolby Atmos. We are working to confirm that it will also feature Dolby Vision HDR. [Editor’s Note: Disney has confirmed to us that the 4K Ultra HD release will feature Dolby Vision HDR.] The Blu-ray versions will include English 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio. [Read on here…]

Published in My Two Cents
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