My Two Cents
Tuesday, 10 August 2021 18:20

Warner brings Coppola’s Outsiders to 4K, plus Highlander in Ultra HD from Studio Canal & Lionsgate, new Indicator BD titles, the end of NTSC & more

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Hope you’re all having a great week so far. I was buried in catch-up work yesterday after having a series of family visits here—our first in two years due to the pandemic—so suffice it to say that there was no news post yesterday.

However, I’ve been on the phone a lot in the last couple of days talking with industry sources, and we’ve got some great new Blu-ray and especially 4K catalog updates for you this afternoon.

FYI, there will be more new disc reviews coming later this week as well, so be sure to check back for those. But let’s get right into the 4K news...

First up, I’ve confirmed with multiple industry sources now that Warner Bros. will be releasing Francis Ford Coppola’s The Outsiders (1983) on physical 4K Ultra HD in early November. Coppola and his American Zoetrope have recently been remastering several of the director’s films in 4K (Lionsgate is releasing a remastered Dementia 13 on Blu-ray and 4K Digital on 9/21 as part of their Vestron Video Collector’s Series, and Paramount is going to be releasing the complete Godfather Trilogy in 4K Ultra HD next year in honor of the original film’s 50th anniversary), so perhaps it shouldn’t come as a surprise. [Read on here...]

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Also (while we’re talking Warner Bros.), we’ve learned that their 4K-upgraded Mad Max Trilogy is likely to arrive in early November as well, including Mad Max (1979), Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior, and Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome remastered for physical Ultra HD.

Moving over to Lionsgate, retail sources are now indicating that the studio is tentatively planning to release Studio Canal’s new remaster of Russell Mulcahy’s Highlander (1986) on physical 4K Ultra HD in mid-September (the tentative street date is 9/14). The studio has also announced Rob Zombie’s 3 from Hell (2019) for 4K Steelbook release only at Best Buy stores on 9/28.

On the standard Blu-ray front briefly (we’ll come back to it in a moment), Lionsgate will release Michael Feifer’s Catch the Bullet on Blu-ray on 9/14.

Back to 4K for a moment: Some of you will be glad to know that you’ll be able to buy the individual Universal Classics Monsters: Icons of Horror Collection titles (Dracula, Frankenstein, The Wolf Man, and The Invisible Man) on 4K Ultra HD in Steelbook packaging exclusively at Best Buy stores on 10/5 (the 4K box set will of course be available widely).

And on the 4K Digital front, it appears that these Universal Classics Monsters: Icons of Horror Collection titles are starting to be upgraded to 4K HDR on iTunes/Apple TV, Vudu and elsewhere. Dracula is already up on iTunes/Apple TV and it looks like Frankenstein is about to be similarly upgraded. Also, Paramount’s Star Trek III: The Search for Spock has been updated in HD on iTunes/Apple TV (and likely elsewhere) from the new 4K remaster, much like Star Trek: The Motion Picture theatrical cut recently was (and Star Trek IV is likely to be similarly updated in the next couple of weeks too).

Back to good old regular Blu-ray for a moment, MVD is releasing William Webb’s Dirty Laundry (1987) as part of their MVD Rewind Collection on 10/5.

What’s more, our friends at Indicator Films have just announced a great slate of Limited Edition catalog Blu-ray titles for release in the UK in October, including Andrew V. McLaglen’s The Hellfighters (1968), Jack Smight’s Midway (1976), Joseph Sargent’s MacArthur (1977), and David Greene’s Gray Lady Down (1978). Street date for each is 10/18.

And finally today, this may come as a surprise to some of you, but only last month—on July 13th—did analog NTSC TV broadcasting in the U.S. finally end for good, some 80 years after it began. There are apparently a few stations in Canada still broadcasting in NTSC format until sometime next year, but the last U.S. station has finally gone dark. And I say good riddance to rabbit ears and square tube TVs that were Never Twice the Same Color. Though it certainly served us well for many decades, I shall not miss the era of analog TV.

All right, that’s all for this afternoon. We’ll be back with more tomorrow!

Stay tuned...

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