The Blu-ray Blog » Video Blu-ray disc news, reviews, opinions and deals. Everything that's fit to print about the world's favourite HD format!Fri, 13 Jun 2014 14:33:04 +0000en-UShourly1[VIDEO] Willow 25th Anniversary Blu-ray Trailer, 14 Dec 2012 16:30:46 +0000’s been so many years since I’ve seen Willow that I can barely recall whether or not I cared for it. It seems like the sort of thing I would have been wild for as a boy but the fact that I can barely remember it doesn’t speak that highly for the film. That said, I’m pleased to see that it’s been restored and it’s on its way to Blu. Watching the trailer, embedded below (or after the jump, depending on where you’re reading this) I can’t help but feel that Fox is releasing this now to take advantage of Hobbit fever. What are the chances that the Blu-ray edition of Peter Jackson‘s latest will hit around the same time as this disc, huh? March 12th, three months from now? Seems fairly likely. Good thinking, Fox.

(March 12, 2013 – MSRP $24.99)
Video: 2.39:1 1080p
Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1

Special Features:

  • Deleted Scenes with Ron Howard Commentary
  • Making of an Adventure with Ron Howard Introduction
  • Morf to Morphing with Dennis Muren Introduction and Closing
  • Willow: An Unlikely Hero — Personal Video Diary of Warwick Davis
  • Matte Paintings Gallery

[VIDEO] The Dark Knight Rises Blu-ray trailer, 12 Nov 2012 16:08:05 +0000 didn’t love The Dark Knight Rises but it’s by no means a terrible film. In fact, I found it quite thrilling. It’s just not what I want from a Batman movie. Nerd-hopes and expectations aside, it provides and fitting and fairly satisfying conclusion to Christopher Nolan‘s superhero trilogy and will, no doubt be one of this holiday season’s best selling Blu-ray discs. Warner has posted a Blu-ray trailer to promote the Dec. 4 disc release. Check it out after the jump.

(December 4, 2012 – MSRP $35.99)
Video: 2.40:1/1.78:1 1080p
Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1

Special Features:

  • “THE BATMOBILE” DOCUMENTARY: Witness all five Batmobiles together for the first time in history. Dive deep into every aspect of the most awe-inspiring weapon in Batman’s arsenal as you journey through the birth and evolution of this technological marvel and cultural icon. (01:00)
  • ENDING THE KNIGHT: A comprehensive look into how Director Christopher Nolan and his production team made “The Dark Knight Rises” the epic conclusion to the Dark Knight legend.
    • Production
      • The Prologue: High-Altitude Hijacking
      • Return to the Batcave
      • Beneath Gotham
      • The Bat
      • Batman vs Bane
      • Armory Accepted
      • Gameday Destruction
      • Demolishing a City Street
      • The Pit
      • The Chant
      • The War on Wall Street
      • Race to the Reactor
    • Characters
      • The Journey of Bruce Wayne
      • Gotham’s Reckoning
      • A Girls Gotta Eat
    • Reflections
      • Shadows & Light in Large Format
      • The End of A Legend
  • Trailers
  • Art Galleries

[VIDEO] Three Reasons: Rosemary’s Baby – The Criterion Collection, 29 Oct 2012 20:31:41 +0000 a lot of ways, this has really been the finest season of Halloween Blu-ray releases ever! I don’t think there have ever been so many classic horror films restored and unleashed into the world on high-def disc ever (and, good God, if you happen to live in the UK, there a million and one Hammer horror films now available to you on Blu, you lucky bastard!) Adding to the lineup of killer flicks, Criterion‘s fantastic new Blu-ray edition of Rosemary’s Baby hits shelves tomorrow. Pray that it turns up in your trick ‘r treat loot bag. Watch Criterion’s latest “Three Reasons” trailer advertising the release, after the jump.

(October 30, 2012 – MSRP $39.95)
Video: 1.85:1 1080p
Audio: monaural soundtrack

Special Features:

  • New, restored digital transfer, approved by director Roman Polanski, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack
  • New documentary featuring interviews with Polanski, actress Mia Farrow, and producer Robert Evans
  • Interview with author Ira Levin from a 1997 broadcast of Leonard Lopate’s public radio program New York and Company, about his 1967 novel, its sequel, and the film
  • Komeda, Komeda, a feature- length documentary on the life and work of jazz musician and composer Krzysztof Komeda, who wrote the score for Rosemary’s Baby
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Ed Park; Levin’s afterword to the 2003 New American Library edition of his novel; and Levin’s rare, unpublished character sketches of the Woodhouses and floor plan of their apartment, created in preparation for the novel

[VIDEO] Plague of the Zombies/The Reptile Blu-ray promo, 08 May 2012 03:50:39 +0000

We here in North America haven’t seen many classic Hammer films make the transition to Blu-ray yet but the famous studio, now reborn, has partnered with Studio Canal for a massive restoration and release program in the UK. The next two titles in the series, due in stores June 18, are Plague of the Zombies and The Reptile, a couple of B-films that played in double features back in the day with their higher-profile siblings, Dracula, Prince of Darkness and Rasputin, the Mad Monk, respectively. Both discs feature a collection of newly produced bonus goodies, including retrospective docs (footage from which has no doubt been used to create the promo embedded above) and restoration demos, among many other extras. They’ll both likely be Region B locked discs, so those of us over on this side of the Atlantic without Region Free players will have to wait until domestic releases are announced. And the studio says we’ll hear all about that very soon. Then again, they’ve been singing that song since January. Their definition of “soon” clearly differs from mine…

The Reptile (DVD + Blu-ray Double Play) [1966]Plague Of The Zombies (DVD + Blu-ray Double Play) [1966]

[VIDEO] Three Reasons: La haine – The Criterion Collection, 13 Apr 2012 18:45:16 +0000

Holy crap. Was Vincent Cassel ever this young? Watching the latest of Criterion‘s Three Reasons videos, which pimps their upcoming May 8th release of Mathieu Kassovitz‘ 1995 La Haine, reminds me that it’s been around 16 years since I first laid eyes on the film and Cassel. I’m sure I also looked a lot less like a tired but very famous older man married to Monica Bellucci back then but damn, it’s hard to believe this is the same actor I’ve recently watched in A Dangerous Method and Mesrine. I can’t wait to revisit La Haine and angry, young Cassel on Blu in a few weeks’ time.

La haine (1995) - The Criterion Collection


(May 8, 2012 – MSRP $39.95)
Video: 1.33:1 1080p
Audio: monaural soundtrack

Special Features:

  • Restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised by director Mathieu Kassovitz, with 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack
  • English-language audio commentary by Kassovitz
  • Introduction by actor Jodie Foster
  • Ten Years of “La haine,” an eighty-minute documentary that brings together cast and crew a decade after the film’s landmark release
  • Featurette on the film’s banlieue setting, including interviews with sociologists Sophie Body-Gendrot, Jeffrey Fagan, and William Kornblum
  • Production footage
  • Deleted and extended scenes, each featuring an afterword by Kassovitz
  • Gallery of behind-the-scenes photos
  • Trailers
  • PLUS: A new essay by film scholar Ginette Vincendeau and an appreciation by acclaimed filmmaker Costa-Gavras

[VIDEO] Three Reasons: The War Room – The Criterion Collection, 15 Mar 2012 14:05:57 +0000

How amazing does The War Room look? I mean, look, this film has got two strikes against it for me, right from the get-go – I’m not American and I’m not really into politics. But even I can see from Criterion‘s latest Three Reasons trailer, embedded above for your viewing pleasure, that directors D. A. Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus have got some incredible footage on their hands here. One of my close pals has been urging me to watch this flick for years now and I’ve just never had the opportunity. Thank goodness and the good folks at my favourite boutique home video label that it’s going to be available on Blu-ray next week, March 20th.

    The 1992 presidential election was a triumph not only for Bill Clinton but also for the new breed of strategists who guided him to the White House and changed the face of politics in the process. For this thrilling, behind-closed-doors account of that campaign, renowned cinema verité filmmakers D. A. Pennebaker (Monterey Pop) and Chris Hegedus ( closely followed the brainstorming and bull sessions of Clinton’s crack team of consultants—especially the folksy James Carville and the preppy George Stephanopoulos, who became media stars in their own right as they injected a youthful spirit and spontaneity into the process of campaigning. Fleet-footed and entertaining, The War Room is a vivid document of a political moment whose truths (“It’s the economy, stupid!”) still ring in our ears.

The War Room (1993) - The Criterion Collection


(March 20, 2012 – MSRP $29.95)
Video: 1.33:1 1080p
Audio: 2.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio

Special Features:

  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer, approved by directors D. A. Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus, with 2.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack
  • Return of the War Room, a 2008 documentary in which advisers James Carville, George Stephanopoulos, and Paul Begala and others reflect on the effect the Clinton war room had on the way campaigns are run
  • Making “The War Room,” a conversation between the filmmakers about the difficulties of shooting in the campaign’s fast-paced environment
  • Panel discussion hosted by the William J. Clinton Foundation and featuring Carville, Clinton adviser Vernon Jordan, journalist Ron Brownstein, and surprise guest Bill Clinton
  • Interview with strategist Stanley Greenberg on the increasing importance of polling
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by writer Louis Menand

[VIDEO] Three Reasons: Vanya on 42nd Street – The Criterion Collection, 27 Feb 2012 00:53:17 +0000

I love Louis Malle and I love David Mamet. But I have to admit, I’m just not as excited as I probably should be to watch their 1994 film Vanya on 42nd Street, making its high-def debut this week. Perhaps it’s all those years I spent working in the theatre and my general distaste for stage actors (all true!) Perhaps it’s also the lackluster cover art on the new Criterion Blu-ray disc. Either way, this isn’t my most anticipated release this month from my favourite boutique label. But I have faith in their selection of this film and faith in the creative talents behind and in front of the camera. The notion that they’d all deliver something less than stellar is… INCONCEIVABLE! (See what I did there?) Watch the new Three Reasons video embedded above.

Vanya on 42nd Street (1994) - The Criterion Collection


(February 28, 2012 – MSRP $39.95)
Video: 1.66:1 1080p
Audio: 2.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio

Special Features:

  • New high-definition digital restoration, with 2.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack
  • New documentary featuring interviews with André Gregory, the play’s director; actors Lynn Cohen, George Gaynes, Julianne Moore, Larry Pine, Wallace Shawn, and Brooke Smith; and producer Fred Berner
  • Trailer
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Steven Vineberg and a 1994 on-set report by film critic Amy Taubin

[VIDEO] Three Reasons: World on a Wire – The Criterion Collection, 06 Feb 2012 03:30:51 +0000

I actually don’t need any more reasons to be excited about Criterion‘s upcoming Blu-ray edition of Rainer Werner Fassbinder‘s World on a Wire but this new ‘Three Reasons’ trailer from the studio has got me seriously chomping at the bit to get my hands on the disc. In a muscular month of releases that includes the likes of Preminger‘s Anatomy of a Murder and Lena Dunham‘s Tiny Furniture, World on a Wire is the one that gets my blood pumping. Just look at that photography! My god, ’70s retro-sci-fi is super cool. Even cooler when it’s German.

The Blu-ray disc will be in shops in a little over two weeks.

World on a Wire (1973) - The Criterion Collection


(February 21, 2012 – MSRP $39.95)
Video: 1.33:1 1080p
Audio: uncompressed monaural

Special Features:

  • New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack
  • Fassbinder’s “World on a Wire”: Looking Ahead to Today, a fifty-minute documentary about the making of the film by Juliane Lorenz
  • New interview with German-film scholar Gerd Gemünden
  • New English subtitles
  • Trailer for the 2010 theatrical release
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic Ed Halter

[VIDEO] The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 Blu-ray, 21 Jan 2012 23:48:55 +0000

Can you believe this? To this day, I have yet to see a single film in the Twilight series. It’s true. So the trailer above means very little to me. Nor does the release of the Blu-ray disc of the penultimate film, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1. It’ll be on store shelves in a few weeks, which I take to mean that the final installment of the series will be hitting cinemas shortly thereafter. At this point, I think I’m just going to wait ’till this whole things is wrapped up before I dive in and experience sparkling vampires for myself.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part I [Blu-ray] (2011)


(February 11, 2012 – MSRP $33.99)
Video: 2.39:1 1080p
Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1

Special Features:

  • AUDIO COMMENTARY by director Bill Condon

[VIDEO] The Hangover Part II Blu-ray Trailer, 29 Nov 2011 05:27:54 +0000

Was I, like, the only thirty-something guy in North America who didn’t think The Hangover was the best comedy of the last few years? I’m sure I wasn’t alone, but it feels like it at times. My ho-hum feelings about the original film led me to skip out on catching the sequel in the theatre. I understand it brought in a lot of cash for Warner but was universally panned by critics. Can’t say I’m surprised by either result. But what I am surprised by, is that I’ve hit a sufficient point of Hangover de-saturation that I’m now ready to dive into the sequel. I guess my sour feelings have passed and I’m in the mood for sophomoric man-comedy. The Hangover Part II Blu-ray hits shops next week, on December 6th. Check out the Blu-ray trailer above.

The Hangover Part II (Blu-ray/DVD Combo + UltraViolet Digital Copy) (2011)


(December 6, 2011 – MSRP $35.99)
Video: 2.40:1 1080p
Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1

Special Features:

  • Comedy Rhythm of Todd Phillips
  • Not Your Everyday Monkey
  • Bangkok Tour with Mr. Chow
  • Action Mash-Up
  • Hangover 2 Laugh Track
  • Gag Reel