Return Of The Caped Crusader
(2016/DC Comics/Warner Blu-ray w/DVD)/Blindman
(1971/ABKCO Films DVD)/Body
Day: Resurgence (2016/Fox
4K Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)/The
Night Of The Grizzly
(1966/Paramount/Olive Signature Edition Blu-ray)/Remo
Williams: The Adventure Begins
(1985/Orion/MGM/Twilight Time Limited Edition Blu-ray)/Schneider
Vs. Bax (2015/Film
Ultra HD Picture: B+ Picture: B/B/C+/B/B/B/C+ Sound:
B/C+/B/B+ & B/C+/B/C+ Extras: C/C-/C-/C-/C+/B-/C- Films:
Blu-ray is now only available from our friends at Twilight Time, is
limited to only 3,000 copies and can be ordered while supplies last,
Blu-ray is now only available from Warner Bros. through their Warner
Archive series. All can be ordered from the links below.
a new set of all kinds of genre film releases for you to know
Return Of The Caped Crusader
(2016) brings back Adam West and Burt Ward as Batman and Robin from
the original hit 1960s TV series (reviewed elsewhere on this site),
but this is animated, yet the actors already voiced animated versions
of the Dynamic Duo in the late 1970s hit Filmation TV series (also
reviewed elsewhere on this site) The New Adventures Of Batman that
actually had Batmite (!) and was still more serious at times than
what we get here. Not that that's a bad thing.
it more as a spoof of the 1960s show, we have an Aunt May that
suspects 'something' about Bruce Wayne & Dick Grayson, but
they've got trouble as their alter-egos when The Joker, Penguin,
Riddler (all voiced by actors doing a fine job of imitating original
actors (respectively) Cesar Romero, Burgess Meredith and Frank
Gorshin) and Catwoman (voiced well by original actress Julie Newmar)
show up on Dick;'s favorite TV show.
the 1970s show, this feature-length romp is still taking place in the
mid-1960s (before Batgirl shows up) so its focused on jokes,
in-jokes, intertextual references and gags about the show and that
time period. Its gets a little silly at times (outer space,
duplication rays, etc.) but is a very amusing, interesting work that
shows a love of the original show and seems to be a trial run for a
possible series of direct-to-video features. That could work, but
they will have to try some other approaches, because there are some
things here that just do not work. Otherwise, this is an interesting
attempt to do a retro project and it was smarter than you might
expect. Wait until you see who else shows up.
include Digital HD Ultraviolet Copy for PC, PC portable and other
cyber iTunes capable devices, while the discs add a bunch of DC
Comics-related previews and two Behind The Scenes/Making Of
Classic Cadre Of Voices.
(1971) features Tony Anthony from The
series of Spaghetti westerns that wanted to emulate Clint Eastwood's
films. Those were produced by Allen Klein of ABKCO Records, but were
co-produced by MGM (Warner owns them now owning older MGM films up to
1986), but Anthony and Klein took a break between films 2 and 3 to
make this one. Owned by ABKCO Films, it is finally hitting at least
DVD in a fine new HD master from the 35mm negative. Anthony is the
title character, a cowboy who is blind, but wants 40 women he was
promised and will do what he has to to get them and have a contract
he has honored. The one twist here is that Ringo Starr, who was
dabbling in filmmaking of all kinds at the time, plays a rough, mean,
even violent Mexican bandit type in what is his most politically
incorrect turn. He is not the main villain and not even in the film
enough, but his acting turn here adds to the oddness of the film.
With other Anthony Westerns on DVD and Blu-ray, plus a few of Starr's
films finally on disc, the time was overdue for this release.
this point in the genre, Spaghetti Westerns were starting to add
comedy, maybe too much, but you'll be surprised how serious this one
is for the most part. Nice to see it again, flaws and all, after all
an original theatrical trailer is the only extra, but for more on
Anthony's Westerns, start at this link for his 3D hit Comin'
on Blu-ray and you'll find coverage of all four of his Stranger
(1993) is the third and underseen version of the book that inspired
the 1956 and 1978 classic films of unforgettable terror. Ferrara was
known for his independent works (like the underrated Ms. 45) and this
was his one time working with a big Hollywood studio. People who
worked on the script include Larry Cohen (the It's
films) and Stuart Gordon (the Re-Animator
films) and it feels like it to the film's advantage. The aliens are
back, but this time, they are invading a military town, a place where
families live near a military base. R. Lee Ermey (Full
and Forest Whittaker show up in interesting performances as soldiers,
but most of the cast remain unknowns over two decades since the film
Meg Tilly is very memorable here and Gabriele Anwar is effective in a
film meant to give her an acting career and not quite helping her.
Our loss too. Now finally issued by Warner Archive and on Blu-ray,
it was rarely seen widescreen (outside of film prints and the old
12-inch analog LaserDisc), it has been a hit in this new version,
proving the following for this remake is growing. Warner lost
confidence in the film an allegedly cut it down in length (it feels
like it) and we do not get the debut of a possibly longer version.
But even in this shorter cut, this is creepy and more well made than
it got credit for at the time. I'm glad to see the film get the
respect it deserves and hope more people finally catch up with it.
This fine new edition will help that cause.
an Original Theatrical Trailer is the only extra.
(2016) could have been some kind of hit, even without Will Smith
returning, but did they have to have his character be dead as this
starts? That is the kind of bad judgment and very bad thinking that
ruined what could have worked as most of the original is back. The
killer aliens are also back, but why they took two full decades with
all their advanced technology is as goofy as the rest of this long,
120 minutes exercise in pointlessness that will make you root for the
aliens just so it will be over.
Fox has issued it immediately as a day-and-date 4KBlu-ray w/Blu-ray
and now, you can see and hear more clearly than ever how much this
failed. Any of the fun, humor or energy the first film had is gone,
and they still have the same director too? After the real life 9/11
terror attacks, a sequel was unthinkable and after a few decades
it is better to forget about sequels, reboots or the like. This and
the aliens are all too digital, this has more cliches than you could
imagine (at least the first film had fun with them) and I cannot
recommend this under any circumstances. It is barely even good
include Digital HD Ultraviolet Copy for PC, PC portable and other
cyber iTunes capable devices, while both discs offer a feature length
Director's Audio Commentary and the 1080p Blu-ray adds Deleted Scenes
with optional commentary, Concept Art Galleries, Gag Reel, It's
the 4-part Another
documentary and War Of 1996 featurette.
the original film has already been issued on 4K 2160p Blu-ray and you
can read more about it at this link...
Night Of The Grizzly
(1966) is a film that did mixed business in its time, but became a
staple in TV syndication and on home video when it was there. With a
previous Blu-ray edition doing well enough, Olive has reissued an
upgraded version of the film as part of their new Signature Edition
series on Blu-ray. Clint Walker is a lawman trying to settle down
and buy a farm, but greedy people and other goofs are trying to get
in his way and even stop him, then there is a grizzly bear on the
loose killing cattle and even people. The title sounds like this
might just be a horror film (sad how times have changed), but it is
supposed to be part of the old action/nature films that included so
many Tarzan films and other Westerns.
is enough of a Western to qualify for the genre and has more comedy
than you might expect including Nancy Culp of The
as comic relief running a local shop, Jack Elam doing his comical
thing and Keenan Wynn as another boo, hiss villain. I'm not a big
fan of the film and never have been, but part of its appeal is it
comes from a more innocent time and a time when Hollywood was trying
to make more pleasant entertainment, thus its loyal following. Now
it has a special edition fans can love, even if you don't land up
liking the film. In that, its worth a look for those interested.
Martha Hyer also stars.
in the slipcase packaging include an illustrated booklet on the film
including informative text and an essay by C. Courtney Joyner on the
film, while the Blu-ray disc adds a feature length audio commentary
track by Toby Roan, archival World Premiere footage of the film's
launch, full color archival At
Home With Clint Walker and His Home Gymnasium
interview featurette and a new Walker interview dubbed The
Legend Of Big Jim Cole.
Williams: The Adventure Begins
(1985) has finally arrived on Blu-ray in the U.S. and we covered what
is essentially the same transfer from Arrow U.K. at this link...
to say I am no big fan of the film, a film trying to be a Bond film
while being an anti-Bond film (and I don't mean serious spy thriller
versus more commercial action/adventure) and it is more painfully
obvious just how much failed here. Orion Pictures hoped for a hit
and it was just a big dud with barely a cult following, but enough to
get what is now two special editions. This time, MGM (the owners of
the Orion catalog) have licensed this to Twilight Time, but it will
be one of their Limited Edition Blu-rays. For fans only, to say the
in this new edition come with a new illustrated booklet on the film
totally different from the Arrow version, including informative text
and yet another excellent, underrated essay by the great film scholar
Julie Kirgo, an Original Theatrical Trailer, an Isolated Music Score
with select Sound Effects and a different, feature length audio
commentary track from Arrow's featuring film, genre scholars Lee
Pfeiffer, Eddie Friedfeld and Paul Scrabo.
As well, we get a stills & promotional gallery and five Behind
The Scenes/Making Of featurettes that debut here: composer Craig
Safan appears in Assassin's
interviewed (again!) about the music, Created,
The Destroyer; Writing Remo Williams,
and Dangerous: Producing Remo Williams,
Of Sinanju: Training Remo Williams
Of Power: Designing Remo Williams.
Add that to all that Arrow offered on the film and that more extras
than a film like this could have ever, ever, ever hoped to expect.
but not least is Alex Van Warmerdam's Schneider
(2015) which wants o be a comedy about two people trying to kill each
other, but lands up with some mixed results. Schneider (Tom
Dewispelaerew) has been hired to kill Bax (played by Director van
Warmerdam), but they have nothing against each other and really don't
know each other. Turns out an outside guy who seems to dislike them
both has set them up against each other. Schneider finds this out
when his 'employer' sends him a text message meant for Bax, but they
land up trying to kill each other anyhow and anyone else there gets
stuck in the middle.
is not exactly Black Humor outright in this Dutch production, but it
is somewhat dark, yet I expected something more surprising or
interesting. The actors and locales are actually interesting and
some scenes to work, but (not that the makers are smug) the people
who made this are just coasting a bit on what they think works more
than it does. The result is very awkward and does not end in a way
that is satisfying, but at least its not digital effects and green &
blue screen for two hours, to its credit.
and the darkly humorous short film, Matthias Sahli's House
are the only extras.
default and despite so many false and fake-looking effects, the 2160p
HECV/H.265, HDR (10; Ultra HD Premium)-enhanced Ultra High Definition
2.35 X 1 image on Independence
is the best presentation here, just over the regular 1080p 2.35 X 1
digital High Definition image Blu-ray transfer and the other entries
on this list. Its close. In 2160p, you can simply see more detail,
depth and a better color range, even if the colors look unnatural.
This is sloppy, even for Emmerich, whose overdosed his audiences and
himself with digital effects. I would also argue the original film,
especially on 4K Blu-ray, looks better throughout despite being 20
1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image on Batman
has simple animation that will remind some of rotoscoping, but that
is the style and it is consistently colorful and that becomes more
apparent in subtle ways when compared to the passable, anamorphically
enhanced DVD. The makers are having fun here and though I would
argue they have slightly pulled back on the color versus what they
could or should have done, this is fine.
1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer on Body
rarely shows the age of the materials used, is a brand new HD master
of the film and was one of the few films shot in what was being
dubbed ArriScope (no 3D and using Clairmont camera equipment) giving
the film a very different look (Radioland
Queen Of The Desert
used the format) that lands up making this even more creepy visually
as a result. Its worth seeing just for that.
1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer on Grizzly
is slightly dark and can show the age of the materials used, but this
is just superior a transfer to the previous Olive Blu-ray edition,
dye-transfer, three-strip Technicolor you would have seen in such
35mm prints of the film in theaters is not always present, but
usually so. Expect more grain than usual, though, since the frames
1080p 1.85 X 1 digital High Definition image on Remo
is the same, also darker-than-it-should-be video master (film color
by DeLuxe) that the import Blu-ray had. Though I'm no fan of the
film, from what I have seen of it earlier and considering the
of Photography is the great Alan Hume, B.S.C., this is just not quite
correct, but passable.
anamorphically enhanced 2.35 X 1 image on both DVDs have their
moments of softness, but Blindman
is another film here shot in tiny Techniscope frames and issued in
35mm dye-transfer, three-strip Technicolor prints. ABKCO has struck
a new print and it looks pretty good, but despite being made five
years after Grizzly,
you can see more grain and part of that is more outdoor shooting.
Still, this looks the best I've seen it in eons, so at least the
print is more accurate versus some of the Blu-rays here.
DVD is an HD shoot that has some good shots, also takes place in
mostly outdoor locales and is consistent, but still has more soft
shots than I would have liked.
for sound, Independence
not only offer D-BOX
motion bass encoding, but the 4K 2160p version offers a Dolby Atmos
11.1 mix (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 mixdown for older systems) that is easily
the best sound mix on the list, but its regular Blu-ray 1080p edition
comes with a DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 7.1 lossless mix that is no
slouch either. Too bad the actual mixing is boring, predictable,
synthetic and unexciting, like the film's script itself.
(recorded all in studio, of course) and Body
are not only both well mixed and presented with consistent
soundfields, but are offered in DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless
mixes that work well. I have to give Body
credit for sounding so good for its age, though, well thought out in
has a DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 2.0 Mono lossless mix that really
shows its age and slightly disappoints (must be the way it was
recorded), as does the DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 2.0 Stereo lossless
mix (with real Pro Logic surrounds) on Remo
that sounds exactly like the mix from the import Blu-ray. Its
isolated music score sounds better, so flaws are inherent to the way
it was recorded.
lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono on Blindman
was post-dubbed, so the errors can be distracting, but it sounds fine
for what we get, while the lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 and 2.0 Stereo on
are decent, but the 5.1 is slightly better. Still, the mix is quiet
at times for suspense purposes and the film would probably sound
better lossless. Both DVDs tie with the Grizzly
Blu-ray for sonic last place.
order the Remo
limited edition Blu-ray, buy it and other great gems while supplies
last at these links:
to order the Body
Blu-ray, go to this link for them and many more great web-exclusive