My Two Cents
Wednesday, 19 August 2020 16:35

Criterion’s November slate includes The Irishman, plus Total Recall 4K, Bill & Ted Face the Music, and a pretty significant Disney+ rumor

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Okay, we’ve got some significant release and industry news to report today. But first, new disc reviews...

Tim has just posted a review of Pierre B. Reinhard’s Revenge of the Living Dead Girls (1987) on Blu-ray from Severin Films.

And Dennis has turned in his thoughts on Budd Boetticher’s World War II drama The Red Ball Express (1952), now available on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber Studio Classics.

Also, I’ve just gotten my hands on Arrow Video’s new Pitch Black 4K Ultra HD, so I’m going to have a review of that up by Friday.

But tomorrow is likely to be an interesting news day, as that’s when the industry’s mid-year numbers get released. So I’ll have more on that tomorrow afternoon. [Read on here...]

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All right, let’s get to that announcement news...

Criterion has just revealed their November slate of Blu-ray and DVD titles, and it’s going to make lots of you pretty happy. Look for Claudia Weill’s Girlfriends (Spine #1055 – Blu-ray and DVD) on 11/10, Norman Jewison’s Moonstruck (Spine #1056 – Blu-ray and DVD) and Jim Jarmusch’s Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (Spine #1057 – Blu-ray and DVD) on 11/17, the already announced Essential Fellini box set on 11/24, and finally Martin Scorsese’s long-awaited The Irishman (Spine #1058 – Blu-ray and DVD) also on 11/24. We’ve updated our Criterion Spines Project pages here at The Bits accordingly.

Now then, Studio Canal has begun to list their much-anticipated 4K restoration of Paul Verhoeven’s Total Recall (1990) for Ultra HD and Blu-ray release in Europe in November. We’ll post more details when the title is officially announced by the studio.

Meanwhile, word is that Dean Parisot’s new Bill & Ted sequel, Bill & Ted Face the Music, will arrive in theaters and On Demand on 8/28. Amazon will have it (click here), as will Vudu, Kaleidescape, Fandango, Apple TV, Google Play and more. I have high hopes this will be a much-needed comedy gem. Why? If you don’t recognize Dean Parisot’s name, consider this: He’s the man who directed Galaxy Quest. And THAT was a gem. Fingers crossed. We’ll be watching.

Finally, here’s some potentially very big news. Consider this Rumor Mill worthy, but over the last couple of days I’ve been hearing from industry sources that Disney has plans to create a more adult or “PG-13 and above” section of their Disney+ streaming service that would include content from Disney’s various studio labels that isn’t really suitable for kids. The section would require a pin code to access, thus keeping it gated from the kid-friendly content. But the idea is that this is where all of Disney’s new 20th Century content would go. It’s where some of their Touchstone content could go as well. Consider the Alien films, the Die Hard films, etc.

For a long time, it was assumed that all of that content would eventually end up on Hulu. But putting it on Disney+ instead actually makes a TON of sense and here’s why: Hulu only serves the US and Japan. Meanwhile, Disney+’s global reach extends to Australia, Austria, Canada, Channel Islands, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Japan, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Spain, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom, as well as the United States. So this move would turbo-charge direct access to a large international customer base for all of Disney’s key studio brands.


This hasn’t been officially announced yet, but—if true—we expect it to be in the weeks ahead. It’s definitely something to keep your eyes on.

We’ll leave you today with a look at the cover artwork for some of the new Criterion November titles, with Amazon links as they become available (the cover art for Moonstruck is still unfinished apparently)...

The Irishman (Criterion Blu-ray) Girlfriends (Criterion Blu-ray) Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (Criterion Blu-ray)

All right, that’s all for now.

As always, stay tuned...!

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