August 2020

Good afternoon, friends. Hope you all had a lovely weekend.

We’ve got a couple things for you today, starting with a new Blu-ray review. Our own Tim Salmons has done yeoman’s work sinking his teeth into/reviewing Arrow Video’s mammoth and outstanding Gamera: The Complete Collection box set on the format.

The good news: If you’re a fan of kaiju films—and this specific giant turtle in particular—it’s an amazing box set. The bad news: It sold fast and now seems to be out virtually everywhere online. There are a few retailers getting limited stock in now and again, but they go quickly. So unfortunately, unless Arrow is able to reprint it (which I’m told is unlikely at least for now), you might be out of luck. But we couldn’t let their good work go unacknowledged.

And though the set came out on 8/18, it’s literally taken Tim this long to go through it all. Here’s his epic review and we hope you enjoy it.

Also, I posted my thoughts on Lionsgate’s new Ghost in the Shell (1995) 4K release on Friday (click here in the event you missed it). And Dennis has reviewed George Marshall’s The Ghost Breakers (1940), starring Bob Hope, on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber Studio Classics. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

HBO has just officially announced the 4K Ultra HD release of their Chernobyl miniseries on 12/1. The 5-episode series was finished natively in 4K and will include the Blu-ray and Digital copies as well (SRP $44.98). High Dynamic Range will presumably be HDR10.

Extras will include 5 featurettes (Meet the Key Players, Inside the Episode, Behind the Curtain: Director Johan Renck, Script to Screen: The Divers, and Pivotal Moment: The Trial).

Best Buy will also have an exclusive Steelbook version of the set. You can see the wide-release cover artwork pictured at left and also below.

Meanwhile, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has finally announced V for Vendetta for release on 4K Ultra HD on 11/3.

This should be no surprise to Bits readers, as we’ve been talking about this disc for weeks now. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, it’s been a busy week here at The Bits so far and we’ve got a lot of ground to cover today.

First of all, sorry for the lack of daily updates. The reason is three-fold. First, we’ve been working on reviews here at the website—more on that in a moment. Second, we had 110° heat here in SoCal this past weekend, with which our AC could not keep up. That meant my home theater was close to 90°, which made reviewing unpleasant, plus there was the danger of power outages. The good news is that we’ve made up for it since the heat broke—again, more on that in a moment. (The bad news is that our skies this afternoon are an unnatural shade of apocalyptic yellow-orange due to the California wildfires, but that’s neither here nor there.) The third reason is more complicated.

We’ve been hearing from many of our readers based in the Netherlands that you’re unable to see The Bits website. The cause of this is that—apparently—a very large portion of the Internet’s DDoS attacks and cyber shenanigans either come from, or are routed through—Netherlands IP addresses. So our server team is working on a solution to block the riff-raff while allowing the rest of you actual readers to see the site. Please be patient while we sort it all out. Unfortunately, this kind of thing seems perfectly in keeping with the whole 2020 milieu. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

We’ve got another quick update for you as we work on new disc reviews today. Speaking of which...

I’ve just posted my in-depth thoughts on GKids and Shout! Factory’s new Blu-ray release of Hayao Miyazaki’s 2013 animated masterpiece The Wind Rises. It streets on 9/22, and like all of these new GKids/Shout! Studio Ghibli Blu-ray reissues, it’s absolutely the definitive release of the film on disc for fans in the US. Don’t miss it.

My review of Bill & Ted 4K is up next, and over the weekend I’ll be looking at Goonies and Beetlejuice 4K as well. Tim and Dennis are hard at work on reviews too. So be sure to watch for those.

Now then... the big 4K announcement news today is that StudioCanal has officially set the 4K Ultra HD release of Paul Verhoeven’s Total Recall: 30th Anniversary Edition in the UK for 23 November. The 16-bit 4K scan and remaster was done from the original camera negative, with color grading in HDR10 and Dolby Vision HDR. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, today’s post is a quick one because I’m spending the disc and evening working on new disc reviews.

BUT... we’ve got something fun for you fans of Friday the 13th today—the complete list of extras that Shout! Factory and Scream are packing into their forthcoming Friday the 13th Collection: Deluxe Edition box set, which is due on 10/13.

So here’s the text of their press release with the complete list:

“LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Scream Factory has just announced the full list of exciting and shockingly extensive bonus features that will be included in the Friday the 13th Collection: Deluxe Edition, to be released on October 13th, 2020 (see full list below).

“In celebration of the 40th anniversary of the original and groundbreaking 1980 film Friday the 13th, the 16-disc set is the definitive Blu-ray collection of one of the most influential horror franchises ever created and includes all 12 original films from Paramount Pictures and New Line Cinema. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, today’s post is going to be a quick one and for a good reason: Today, my wife and I celebrate our 30th anniversary. But know that I have a number new of Blu-ray and 4K reviews cooking that I’ll start posting this week.

We also have a review from Dennis today of Guy Hamilton’s 1980 film adaptation of Agatha Christie’s The Mirror Crack’d on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber Studio Classics. As some of you may know, Guy Hamilton was also the director of the Bond film Goldfinger. You can find Dennis’ thoughts here.

Now then, we have a couple of good pieces of announcement news today...

Lionsgate has set Matthew Vaughn’s Kick-Ass for release on 4K Ultra HD in Steelbook on 11/3. This is the same disc released on the format earlier, just in the new packaging. Extras include 2 featurettes (A New Kind of Superhero: The Making of Kick-Ass and It’s On! The Comic Book Origin of Kick-Ass), audio commentary by director Matthew Vaughn, a Marketing Archive, and (on the Blu-ray only) The Art of Kick-Ass Gallery. Look for Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos audio on the UHD. SRP is just $24.99. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents
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