(1967/MGM/Warner Archive DVD)/These
(2013/Roadshow/Well Go USA Blu-ray)/Zardoz
(1973/Fox/Twilight Time Limited Edition Blu-ray)
C/B-/B Sound: C/B-/B Extras: C-/C-/B+ Films: C/C/A-
DVD is now only available from Warner Bros. through their Warner
Archive series, while Zardoz
is now only available from our friends at Twilight Time, is limited
to only 5,000 copies and can be ordered while supplies last. Both
can be ordered from the links below.
are three ambitious genre films, but one is a classic that stands out
(1967) is a creepy thriller about a group of brothers and sisters
well underage who hide the fact that their highly religious mother
has died, then they try to control their lives and manipulate the
situation to preserve their new found freedom. I forgot how bizarre
this could get, but it loses credibility early, starts to wallow in
its situation and even Dirk Bogarde cannot save the film when all is
said and done.
covered the limited edition CD soundtrack of Georges Delerue that
remarkably is still in print, which you can read more about at this
child actors are good, including Pamela Franklin and Mark Lester a
year before taking on the title role in the film of the musical
The great Gerald Sim even shows up in a great turn as a bank teller.
It is still worth a look, but offers very mixed results.
trailer is the only extra.
(2013) is set in Australia and is a disaster film about an earth
about to be engulfed by its sun, which will soon incinerate it. What
will they do? James (Nathan Phillips) has a great relationship with
his girlfriend, but when he goes out to help them both, he lands up
helping a little girl who has lost her family. This may be a way to
make this a different kind of end-of-the-world tale, but it backfires
when she is dragged into bad situations any sensible adult would not
drag her into and the twists and turns become lame quickly despite
the makers taking it all seriously.
the cable TV series TURN:
has a memorable turn as one of his best friends, too drunk as he
parties to eventually handle the situation. He is a star in the
making as much as any of the good cast here and if he becomes a star
like he might, that will make this one a curio. I wanted it to work
and some scenes do, but it falls short.
trailer is the only extra.
(1973) is a film most people do not get, but it I as complex as
A Space Odyssey,
Man Who Fell To Earth
or the most challenging science fiction films ever made and is much
more. A British classic, it has influenced everything from Superman:
to the original Star
Sean Connery boldly takes on the role of Zed, a killer for the
mysterious floating head in the sky that lands and delivers bullets
and guns to kill and hunt other humans down for population control.
He secretly jumps into the delivery sculpture and into the world of
the Immortals, which will shake up their peaceful world and possibly
deliver him from his murderous existence. From there, we learn the
various ways the human race broke off into sections of different
development (evolution, technologization and otherwise) and how this
may and may not be sustainable. And more surprises, battles and
murder are in store.
a Kubrick film, if you are laughing (save any rare intended jokes),
you are likely missing out on what the film is saying. This is a
film made by smart adults for smart adults and especially in an era
where the genres it covers has has so many $100 Million+ films made
as well as several films more interested in being tricky than any
tricks or twists really adding up to anything, Zardoz remains a
supreme achievement in and out of the genre, exceeding its genre by
asking tough questions that are increasingly not being asked.
might find it too British or 'foreign' to handle, but that is
actually one of its achievements, remaining challenging and ever
other-worldly when so many films (even good ones, like Terry
Gilliam's trilogy of Brazil,
have come along in its wake. The production design remains
impressive, sense of post-modernism far superior to the likes of
and it is far to say most filmmakers and audiences have still not
caught up to the film or what it has actually achieved. The
excellent cast includes Charlotte Rampling, Sara Kestleman, Niall
Buggy as the eccentric Arthur Frayn, John Alderton, Reginald Jarman
as the voice of Death and David de Keyser as the voice of the
Tabernacle. I love this film and it just gets better with age. Nice
to see it get such grade-A treatment. Get it while it's in print!!!
include a DigiPak with a nicely illustrated booklet on the film
including informative text and Julie Kirgo essay that gets the film,
while the Blu-ray adds an Isolated Music Score Track, Original
Theatrical Trailer, classic Radio Spots with voice-overs by the great
Rod Serling and two feature
length audio commentary tracks: one
by Boorman from the previous DVD release and a new one by film
historians Jeff Bond, Joe Fordham and Nick Redmond.
1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer on both Blu-ray
releases look as good as they possibly can, but Hours
has too much shaky camera work, too many degraded image moments and
some other flaws (sorry DP Bonnie Elliott), so it is actually not as
good as Zardoz,
which looks really good and has its share of demo shots. Sure, the
print can show the age of the materials used, but this is far
superior a transfer to all previous releases of the film and was shot
in real 35mm anamorphic Panavision by legendary Director of
Photography Geoffrey Unsworth, B.S.C.
A Space Odyssey,
(1978)) uses the very widescreen frame to its fullest extent for a
big screen and very big impact that shames most widescreen films
today. The old Fox DVD is no match bigtime.
anamorphically enhanced 1.66 X 1 image on House
is from a print that is a bit worn from a transfer that has aged and
has some dirt, but it is well-shot by Director
of Photography Larry Pizer (Alice
Cooper: Welcome To My Nightmare,
De Palma's Phantom
Of The Paradise)
whose work helped save the film. It deserves a new transfer. The
lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono on House
is on the weak side, no match of the sound on the CD soundtrack noted
above and could also use some restoration.
Blu-rays offer DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mixes, with
having some nice sonic moments, but is not as strong in other scenes
and some location recording is not as good as others. Zardoz
was originally issued in 4-track
magnetic sound with traveling dialogue and sound effects in its best
35mm print presentations in its original theatrical release and with
the DVD offering an odd, lossy Dolby Digital 3.0 Stereo sound
presentation. Though the back of the Blu-ray case says it will only
offer a DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 2.0 Stereo lossless mix, we actually
get an exceptional 5.1 mix that far exceeds what I was expecting of
the film's smart sound mix. The music by David Munrow, who died way
too young, is a plus along with the the great sound effects.
order the Zardoz
limited edition Blu-ray, buy it and other great exclusives while
supplies last at this link:
to order the Our
Warner Archive DVD, go to this link for it and many more great
web-exclusive releases at: