Displaying items by tag: Bluray

Afternoon, folks! Today’s update is a quick one, but we’ve got a couple good things for you.

First, Tim and I have completed a review of Arrow’s new Flash Gordon: Limited Edition in 4K Ultra HD. The new 20th anniversary restoration (licensed from Studio Canal) is fantastic. I’ve never seen the film looking better.

Arrow’s release is a 2 disc set with Flash Gordon in 4K on one disc and the Life After Flash documentary on the other. Studio Canal’s UK release is more elaborate and I’ll be working on a review of that over the weekend, so watch for that here at The Bits on Monday.

Meanwhile, Warner has finally made Stanley Kubrick’s Full Metal Jacket official for release on 4K Ultra HD and Digital on 9/22. As was the case with 2001: A Space Odyssey and The Shining, the film has been remastered in 4K from the original 35mm camera negative under the supervision of Kubrick’s longtime personal assistant, Leon Vitali. The presentation will include HDR10 high dynamic range along with the existing English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, so... I’ve got some interesting follow up on our Disney and Warner news from the past few days.

First though, we’ve got another review for you and more announcement news...

Tim has just turned in his thoughts on Steve Beck’s Thir13en Ghosts (2001), coming soon to Collector’s Edition Blu-ray from Scream Factory. Check that out here.

In release news, Lionsgate has just officially announced the 4K Ultra HD and Digital 4K release of Mamoru Oshii’s landmark anime Ghost in the Shell (1995) on 9/8, as expected. The 4K presentation will include Dolby Vision HDR and Dolby Atmos audio (in both English and Japanese, along with the original Japanese 2.0 LPCM audio), as well as both new and legacy special edition material. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

Well, the new week is here. And unfortunately, in the wake of our post on Friday about Walt Disney Home Entertainment’s catalog 4K plans (or lack thereof), the news today isn’t good either...

Per Deadline this morning, WarnerMedia has begun a round of layoffs and restructuring meant to help the company survive the pandemic and its resulting economic downturn. Jeffrey R. Schlesinger (President, Warner Bros. Worldwide Television Distribution), Ron Sanders (President, Worldwide Theatrical Distribution & Home Entertainment and EVP, International Business Operations), and Kim Williams (EVP and Chief Financial Officer, Warner Bros. Entertainment) are all “exiting” the company per this arrangement. Ron Sanders has been with the company for almost thirty years, going all the way back to the early days of DVD. So his departure is a big deal. (Our friends at Media Play News have a good profile on Sanders up today here.)

But here’s the rub from the linked Deadline piece... “about 600 employees across multiple divisions are expected to be let go, starting today. Warner Bros Entertainment is believed to be heavily impacted.[Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

What a way to follow-up my state of the home video industry report circa CES 2020 yesterday!

The news is breaking this morning that Warner Bros. and Universal Pictures are going to be merging their physical media distribution operations. The combined venture will distribute Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD discs in North America over the next decade, beginning in early 2021.

The merger will first have to be approved by the United States Justice Department.

Universal Pictures Home Entertainment president Eddie Cunningham will lead the new venture. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, we’ve got a quick rundown of release news for you today...

First up, Universal has just announced the release of Countdown on Blu-ray and DVD on 1/21, with the Digital release due on 1/7.

Any fans of Mister Rogers out there? In addition to the new A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood movie starring Tom Hanks, which hits theaters tomorrow, PBS has announced that 322 classic episodes of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood (originating from 1968 to 2001) are now available for streaming on the PBS Kids Video Channel.

Kino Lorber and GKids are releasing the animated film Aya of Yop City on Blu-ray and DVD on 11/26. The film is directed by Marguerite Abouet and Clément Oubrerie and based on a series of graphic novels by Abouet. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, we’ve got some big release news today as well as a pretty major piece of industry news. But first, we also have some new disc reviews...

Tim has just turned in his thoughts on Marvel’s Ant-Man and the Wasp in Ultra HD, which means that we finally have every single Marvel Cinematic Universe title reviewed on The Digital Bits in 4K. We hope you enjoy!

Also, Dennis has offered a look a Shout! Factory’s new Snow Falling on Cedars: Collector’s Edition on Blu-ray. It’s the latest entry in the distributor’s Shout Select line-up and it’s pretty great. Don’t miss it.

And we’ve posted the weekly update of the Release Dates & Artwork section with all the latest Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K cover artwork and Amazon.com pre-order links. As always whenever you order literally anything after clicking to them through any one of our links here on The Bits (including this one) we really appreciate it. Thank you! [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, I promised my thoughts on The Mandalorian on Disney+. I have to say, I like it. It’s nice to watch a slice of Star Wars that doesn’t involve Jedi, Sith, and Skywalkers for a change. It’s a little in the mold of Rogue One, though that was more closely tied to the Saga films. But Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni have crafted a half-hour series that feels like a slice of lived-in classic Star Wars, and is taking its time developing its story. The texture is right, the supporting cast is terrific (thus far including Carl Weathers, Werner Herzog, and Nick Nolte), and I love the Bill Conti-infused score by Ludwig Göransson.

Pedro Pascal is good in the lead role, but to be fair we haven’t seen him outside the Mandalorian armor yet, nor have we learned very much about the character. But each episode seems to peel back the onion a little more, and again I like the fact that the show is taking its time. I would have thought that 30-40 minute episodes would seem too short, but I find I’m satisfied after each one. And reports from friends and Lucasfilm insiders who have seen more suggest that the show gets better with every new installment (there will be 8 in all in this first season). What I can tell you is that I’m certainly enjoying it. The show also looks great in 4K with HDR, and sounds great too in Dolby Atmos. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

All right, first things first today: Criterion has just announced its February 2020 slate of Blu-ray and DVD titles.

Look for it to include Alfonso Cuarón’s Roma (Spine #1014 – Blu-ray and DVD) on 2/11, Pier Paolo Pasolini’s Teorema (Spine #1013 – Blu-ray and DVD) and an updating of Hiroshi Teshigahara’s Antoni Gaudí (Spine #425 – Blu-ray and DVD) on 2/18, and Jeannie Livingston’s Paris is Burning (Spine #1018 – Blu-ray and DVD) and Three Fantastic Journeys by Karel Zeman (Blu-ray and DVD) on 2/25. That last set includes Journey to the Beginning of Time (Spine #1015), Invention for Destruction (Spine #1016), and The Fabulous Baron Munchausen (Spine #1017). You can read more here at the Criterion website.

Those are all fine titles, but Roma is particularly appreciated given that it was a Netflix release last year and hasn’t been available on physical media yet.

Also today, our own Michael Coate has a new History, Legacy & Showmanship column here at The Bits—first posted yesterday afternoon—in which he looks back at James Cameron’s The Abyss with historian Matthew Kapell in honor of the film’s 30th anniversary. It’s a great piece, so do give it a look. And who knows? Maybe it will remind the director that he’s got a new 4K HDR grade of the film to approve so we can all watch it on Blu-ray and UHD sooner rather than later. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

Before we begin today, a quick note: Our own Tim Salmons has just posted his in-depth review of Warner’s new Batman Beyond: The Complete Series Blu-ray box set. And it sounds like the set is quite good, very much in keeping with their recent Batman: The Animated Series BD set. So here’s the review and we hope you enjoy!

All right, I’ve now had a good solid day to play with Disney+ and I have to say that I’ve been very impressed, in principle, with what I’m seeing and experiencing. I’ll have some more comments later this week on how I think streaming services (and specifically Disney+) will impact the home video market. But I certainly do like what I’m seeing. (Note that I’m viewing via the Disney+ app on the Roku Ultra 4K, running through the Oppo UDP-203 to two different display devices—a flat panel and a projector).

One of the best aspects of Disney+ are the surprises: The chance to see deep catalog Disney live action and animated films like Who Framed Roger Rabbit, The Sword and the Stone, and The Black Cauldron in native 4K with HDR is absolutely tremendous. And the more of this kind of experience Disney+ (and other streaming services) can give us, the better. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents

Well, Disney+ is here at last and it offers some surprises!

The service went live last at about 9PM Pacific (Midnight Eastern) and it’s running very smooth right out of the gate.

But the surprise is how much 4K/HDR content is available on the service.

It starts with nearly all of the Star Wars films. You read that right: All of them are here in 4K with HDR except Solo and The Last Jedi (because Netflix has the rights to those for a few more months).

But you also get most (but not all) of the Marvel films, almost all of the Pixar animated films, a TON of Disney live action films and even some surprises of classic animation. [Read on here...]

Published in My Two Cents
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