Blu-ray w/DVD)/The Effect
Of Gamma Rays On Man-In-The-Moon Marigolds
(1992/Tri-Star/Sony/Both Twilight Time Limited Edition Blu-rays)/I,
Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
(2017/Fox 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)
Ultra HD Picture: A Picture: B & C/B/B/B & C+/B+
Sound: B & C+/B-/C+/B & C+/B+ Extras: B-/C+/C+/C+/C+
Effect Of Gamma Rays On Man-In-The-Moon Marigolds
Blu-rays are now only available from our friends at Twilight Time,
are limited to only 3,000 copies and can be ordered while supplies
last from the links below.
next are three of the big recent awards season films, plus two older
gems in the same league...
(2017) starts out at first to be a little more comical than expected
with the U.K. facing a severe Nazi threat as Neville Chamberlain and
his fellow conservatives have so appeased Hitler that their hopes to
keep some kind of old order is a big illusion. Chamberlain has to
go, but who will Parliament agree to as his successor? Though hardly
a popular choice they turn to controversial Winston Churchill (from
his failure at Gallipoli noted in the film to his Gandhi-bashing the
film skips), who uneasily succeeds Chamberlain, though that camp
thinks they can throw him out if he trips up and fails.
limited to no resources (the British Empire has declined) at this
point dangerously so, Royalty is unsure of him, any collision
government will be fragile at first and a situation in Dunkirk (which
the great Christopher Nolan films shows so well gets a good
description here) potentially a nightmare where the country will lose
a generation at the worst possible time, Churchill (Gary Oldman in a
stunning turn that ranks as one of the best of so many great
performances in his career) has lives a bit in a bubble too.
the film gets slowly more serious as the situation and world get more
grim and Churchill (along with his wife, played well by Kristin Scott
Thomas), we see Churchill take on the establishment and come up with
the best answers against all odds and darker forces who'd rather sell
England out than fight. The film shows how he helped save the free
world and made moral, adult choices one wonders if many people in his
position now could.
was not certain if the film would work or tell a version of his story
and history that I was false or compromised, but this rings true for
pretty much its two-hour length and I will not say any more about it
as not to ruin it, but I must confess Oldman is so powerful here he
overrides any minor issues I have with the film and if I did not know
it was him under all that make-up, it would have taken me a while to
figure out it was that man giving this performance. Don't miss it!
Effect Of Gamma Rays On Man-In-The-Moon Marigolds
(1972) is based on the stage play by Paul Zindel about a poor mother
named Beatrice (Newman's wife Joanne Woodward, who is amazing here)
dealing with two daughters, money troubles and her own dreams lost to
reality and her own personal, private issues. At first, it is
comical because Beatrice has a big mouth, says what no one would have
the nerve to say and in the gritty early 1970s, that was refreshing.
However, there is pain to all this (of course) and her two daughters
(Nell Potts, Woodward and Newman's real-life daughter (now on many
packages of great Newman's Own products) & Roberta Wallach) are
numb from it at this point. To make ends meet, they even try to take
in someone to rent a room from them, but the results are not what
you'd expect. Thus, this is a darkly humorous, slice-of-life piece
about people we rarely hear from or about (especially since the
1980s, making this one of the many films to get lost in that
denial.shuffle since) and a rich one very worthy of rediscovery. Add
that Newman knew how to direct and you have a real gem worth going
out of your way for. I also liked the supporting cast and locations,
all of which were very palpable.
this is a limited edition Blu-ray release from Twilight Time, so get
a copy while you can.
(1992) was made at a time of great change for the director, finding a
new home at TriStar Pictures after Orion Pictures folded, one of his
more serious films about relationships falling apart and one that
would mark the ugly end of his fruitful relationship with Mia Farrow,
a break up so ugly, it still resonates over a quarter century later.
This makes it one of the most painful and painfully honest films he
and Farrow play a happy couple stunned when a best friends couple
(Judy Davis and Sydney Pollack) announce casually that they are
breaking up, but that they are fine with it and it is no big deal.
However, the shock starts to affect them and this leads to a combo of
extra-marital affairs and mid-life crises. Juliette Lewis, Liam
Neeson, Blythe danner and the supporting cast is great and it is
sadder than ever to watch.
course, this posts as there is talk of boycotting Allen, his work and
making any future films with him because of accusations in what was
one of the saddest, ugliest, most toxic and angry break-ups in and
out of Hollywood, where the issues have been revived. Allen has some
brave defenders and many are either bashing him because they always
hated him or just moving away from him because they do not want to
become entangled in an ugliness that we're probably never going to
know everything about. In that, I at least think throwing out his
50+ years of work is a mistake, censorship, has witchhunt elements to
it and is immature. If you don't respect the man, at least
acknowledge his work has been important and impressive. Those who
care will want to see this film again.
(2017) has a title that may recall the biography of Tina Turner or
Asimov's classic Robot
tale, but it is far from both and despite being an awards-winner, is
a bit of whitewashing and revisionist history of the infamous events
surrounding the at-first mysterious assault (turns out murder was
actually considered) of the great skater Nancy Kerrigan. Turns out
friends of her competitor (the film tries to say she did not know
what had happened at first, but one wonders how true that is since we
were lied to about so many other things) Tonya Harding (played here
by the great Margot Robbie, who is good here, but still too pretty
and glamorous to convince me she is Ms. Harding, even with her looks
dulled down) as her then (abusive) husband Jeff (Sebastian Stan,
convincing in an obviously thankless role) helps make happen to help
Tonya win over Kerrigan by having her knee bashed in.
don't see Kerrigan much here, so egotistical and even cynical is this
telling of what happened, almost insulting to the viewer, though I
will buy the parts where Ms. Harding was an abuse victim and often
the victim thereof, yet that excuses ZERO of what happened, no matter
what she claims and once the awards shine and its accompanying
honeymoon period is over, that will all become more obvious.
Janney is the surprise here as her hateful, angry mother who
constantly bashes here and goes out of her way to put her down,
jealous that she might be a success when her mom hardly tried, though
this is also the activity of angry, petty relatives who might have
personal or financial success, et al, and Janney gets it in her
award-winning performance of the kind of self-entitled pettiness
mixed with hate that makes this kind of person(ality) possible.
film runs about two hours, quitting just while it was ahead and I
bought the performances and even the period when I did not buy the
story, though it could have even been more accurate. Thus, that is
another reason why I did not buy this side of the story so much
because there are a few other things that just do not ring true.
Still, it is worth a good look, though some people despise the title
woman so much, they are going out of their way to skip this one. I
would still give it a chance.
still leaves us with another one
of the best films of 2017 and our final entry here, the intense award
winning drama Three
Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
featuring an all-star cast of Oscar Winners Frances McDormand and Sam
Rockwell for their roles in the film along with Woody Harrelson,
Peter Dinklage, John Hawkes, and Abbie Cornish. Directed by Martin
and based on a true story, this is a film for the ages and certainly
one that stands out on the new 4K Ultra HD format.
the investigation surrounding the death of her innocent daughter
reach a dead end, Mildred Hayes (McDormand) takes matters into her
own hands and brings the case's attention to the community by writing
a controversial message on three billboards outside of town.
Targeting the town's dying Chief (Harrelson), his second in command
Officer Dixon (played by Rockwell) brings his violent tendencies to
the case and muddles up the lines between Mildred's wishes to seek
justice for her daughter and revenge.
in a 2160p HECV/H.265, HDR (10; Ultra HD Premium)-enhanced Ultra High
Definition image on the 4K UHD disc with a widescreen aspect ratio of
2.39:1 and a great sounding English DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) lossless
5.1 track, the film looks and sounds great on 4K and includes a 1080p
Blu-ray version of the film as well.
digital copy is also included.
'Em: The Making of Three Billboards"
is a fantastic drama that is realistic and heavy hitting and
definitely worth watching. It definitely lives up to the hype that
followed it throughout the awards season.
rest of the discs look fine to, starting with the 1080p 2.35 X 1
digital High Definition image on the Tonya
Blu-ray, which does not go idiotically out of its way to look
'period' and is not badly edited either, with the anamorphically
enhanced DVD version passable.
We get more than our share of 1.33 X 1 'interview' footage that is
almost too much, but that's it.
other three films are presented in 1080p 1.85 X 1 digital High
Definition and all are shot on film except Hour,
which is a decent HD shoot that does look period, yet never rings
phony. However, the anamorphically
enhanced DVD version is just a little too soft for my tastes.
is the oldest film here and not only does it have its share of grain,
that grain is part of the look of the film, reflecting the poverty
and limits of the world the main characters live in. Color here is
very consistent and this is how the film has always looked at its
is another Allen film lensed by the great Director of Photography
Carlo, DiPalma, A.I.C., with fine camera movement, compositions and a
smooth look reflecting the upper/middle class NYC world the
characters live in. This too is as good as I have ever seen the film
on sound, Hour
actually has lossless Dolby Atmos 11.1 sound (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 for
older systems) and Tonya
offer the expected, quality DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless
mixes that both sound good though Hour
is very dialogue-driven and Tonya
has more than its share of needed music, while Marigolds
(originally issued theatrically in Dolby SR!) only have DTS-HD MA
(Master Audio) 2.0 Mono lossless mixes that are good for what they
are, but are far from sonically thorough. Marigolds
has a few spots of harmonic distortion that make it hard to hear what
is being said, but is typical of analog optical mono sound of the
time, while Husbands
benefits from the advanced Spectral Dolby noise reduction. The Hour
DVDs only have lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 mixes that are passable at
include nicely illustrated booklets on each respective film with
informative text and yet more excellent essays by the great film
scholar Julie Kirgo, while the Blu-rays add Isolated Music Scores
with select Sound Effects and Original Theatrical Trailers. Hour
both offer Digital HD Ultraviolet Copy for PC, PC portable and other
cyber iTunes capable devices, while the discs add feature length
audio commentary tracks with their respective directors and Behind
The Scenes/Making Of featurettes. Tonya
has trailers too.
Effect Of Gamma Rays On Man-In-The-Moon Marigolds and
and Wives Blu-rays
limited edition Blu-rays, buy them and other great exclusives while
supplies last at these links:
Nicholas Sheffo & James