Fulvue Drive-In.com
Current Reviews
In Stores Soon
In Stores Now
DVD Reviews, SACD Reviews Essays Interviews Contact Us Meet the Staff
An Explanation of Our Rating System Search  
Category:    Home > Reviews > Action > Martial Arts > Crime > Murder > TV Mini-Series > Hollywood > Serial Killer > British > Fantasy > P > London Kills: Series 1 (2019/Acorn Blu-ray Set)/US (2019/Universal 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)

General Commander (2019/Lionsgate DVD)/I Am The Night (2019/TNT/Warner DVD Set)/Killing Eve: Season Two (2019/BBC Video Blu-ray Set)/Krull (1983/Sony/Umbrella Region B Import Blu-ray)/London Kills: Series 1 (2019/Acorn Blu-ray Set)/US (2019/Universal 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray w/Blu-ray)

4K Ultra HD Picture: B+ Picture: B/C+/B-/B-/B/B- Sound: C+/C+/B-/B-/B/B+ Extras: D/C/C-/C+/C/C+ Main Programs: B/B-/C+/C+/B-/B

PLEASE NOTE: The Krull Import Blu-ray is now only available from our friends at Umbrella Entertainment in Australia, can only play on Blu-ray players that handle Region B Blu-rays and can be ordered from the link below.

Here's a big cross-section of new genre releases, thrillers of all kinds....

After a CIA mission went south, team leader Jake Alexander (Steven Seagal) loses one of his agents and HQ orders all of them to fall back. However, Jake and his entire team feels like the CIA brass at HQ got cold feet, and they aren't going back down from a fight or just walk away from their team member's death. Jake and his entire team quits and forms their own private task force and goes after the syndicate that was responsible for their friend's death in Ross W. Clarkson and Philippe Martinez's General Commander (2019).

Alexander and all his team goes rogue when one of their own gets killed while on a mission. While headquarters denies everything (including responsibility) they rather cut their losses than finish the mission, to stop an illegal organization responsible for worldwide black market organ harvests. Jake and his team use their old connections to help fund and rebuild their own private hit squad, but at the same time they also have to watch out for assassins sent from the CIA to silence them.

This a was your typical action packed spy movie with Steven Seagal. Also on a side note, all the female characters looked like beautiful models. The movie looked like it was mainly filmed in Asia. The plot was fair obvious, it is the age old story of revenge, and where the good guys must go rogue to stop the bad guys, while large organizations leaders are just bureaucratic felchers who don't care about the mission when things go wrong, they don't care about those in the field and try to avoid responsibility and to blame others. Extras include trailers.

A few years ago, Brian De Palma took over a film at the last minute about the Black Dahlia Murders and had zero control over it creatively, so it bombed and was not convincing. It is still one of the ugliest murder cases and many feel much of the story remains untold. It is also one of the worst examples of the opposite of what Hollywood wants to be and sell itself to be. Patty Jenkins has produced a new mini-series (including doing some directing) that reunites her with her Wonder Woman actor Chris Pine that approaches the case from a new angle.

I Am The Night (2019) has Pine as a photographer trying to turn a quick buck in scandals, et al, when he unexpectedly finds himself crossing into that actual case in the time period it takes place. India Easley is a light-skinned young lady in an African American family experiencing all the discrimination she would if she were 'fully black' but starts to question her situation and lands up trying to find who she really is. Then the infamous murder happens and the story really kicks in.

Though a little slow to start, the six episodes just take their time to develop what is really going on and it is an approach that works for the most part. The underrated Carl Franklin directs later shows and save a few mixed moments in each show that might not work, it is one of the better limited series of late and one that there has to be a larger audience for. Too bad this was not a huger hit in its debut, but this is solid TV work that we do not see enough of, especially on U.S. TV and the supporting cast is a convincing plus.

A print episode guide and five Behind The Scenes clips are the extras.

Killing Eve: Season Two (2019) has Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer as investigator and serial killer getting to unusually close a frenemies, in a darkly comic novelty that has turned apparently novel idea as the long-running serial killer cycle starts to taper off. The show is a surprise hit, though it does not do too much we have not already seen, so the chemistry of the leads and viewers apparently OK with the dark humor are keeping it going (its in a third season) and Oh's star power continues to grow.

BBC Video gives us all 8 episodes over two Blu-ray discs and that works just fine. The supporting cast (including Fiona Shaw) are good enough to keep up the suspension of disbelief, but the surprise to me is that the underrated actress Emerald Fennell is actually a co-producer, so that can only be a good thing. Guess you should start at the beginning, but this should be most worth it for the most curious.

Eight Making Of featurettes, including a recap of the previous season, are the extras.

Peter Yates' Krull (1983) was Columbia Pictures then-big budget gamble ($20 Million!) to make a hit fantasy film that might spawn a franchise. At a time when studios took more risks and money machine sequels were a fresher idea, every major director in Hollywood and the U.K. landed up directing a film like this after the first Star Wars (1977) made insane amounts of money and more were made that did not make it than many now seem to remember.

Ken Marshall is a prince fighting evil forces led by a character named Beast, getting help by obtaining a fancy flying blade with five points that destroys things, is magical and flies back and forth to him like a boomerang. Nice gimmick. In waiting for him is a beautiful woman (Lysette Anthony) who Beast has captured. Can the prince free her?

A vert British production, the matte paintings look good and the model work is not bad, holding up much better than 90% of the horrid CGI we've suffered through of late, but the film has a reliance on optical printing and some bad matte work for too many of its visual effects, but most visual effects houses were just too behind LucasFilm's then-innovate Industrial, Light & Magic unit and few houses did better work than this and none as good as ILM.

This new Umbrella Region B Import Blu-ray is really just a reissue of the old U.S. Blu-ray edition from a long time ago, but its passable and has all the extras that had. At this point, the first three Star Wars films (et al) had made so much money, pretty much every single working director of any major name and credibility was able to land such a project and the great gentleman director Yates got this one. I am not a fan of it, but it holds up better than most such Fantasy genre films since and he loved it. The supporting cast including the great Freddie Jones are good and there is a following of sorts for the film. This disc should help that cause.

Extras include feature length audio commentary tracks (one with Yates, Marshall & Anthony, the other cast/crew off of a magazine article that is not bad), the Marvel Comics adaptation, Journey To Krull featurette and an Original Theatrical Trailer.

Back to killers and maybe serial killers, London Kills: Series 1 (2019) is a police procedural series that is one of the few I believe anyone will remember in a few decades, smart like Lydia La Plante's best and as involving with the investigators wondering why a murder was made to look like a suicide when any serious investigating team would figure out otherwise. The lead casting of actors still not known in the U.S. enough (Hugo Speer, Sharon Small, Bailey Patrick, Tori Allen-Martin) works right off the bat and the show is rightly a hit.

Now whether you want to follow the intertwining developments as the episodes go on is another story and this kind of storytelling is so overdone at this point, one can understand why you might bail out. However, like Gillian Anderson's incredible limited series The Fall (also on Acorn Blu-ray, reviewed elsewhere on this site) is smartly done and if you still really need to watch this kind of fiction, this is one of the current best.

Extras include a 47 minutes Behind The Scenes featurette and Acorn trailers.

Last but absolutely not least is Jordan Peele's US (2019, note it is often spelled in all caps, if not all the time) which proves Get Out (reviewed elsewhere on this site) was no fluke and that Peele's work in the horror genre is serious and just beginning. Starting out as a creepy doppelganger thriller and getting more twisted from there, Peele uses intertextual ideas to make everything even more disturbing as we flashback to a young lady at an amusement area where she goes into a haunted house place dubbed 'Vision Quest' (it has a different name later; look for many such changes as you watch) and in there, she lands up coming face to face with an exact duplicate of herself!

Flash to the mid-1980s when the real life event Hands Across America is about to take place (it happened in real life, but they cheated (the film does not get into this) by using ribbons where people could not stand) is is going on. Now an adult, she (Lupita Nyong'o in one of the year's best performances) now had two children and a great husband (Winston Duke) who are successful and have a nice home and great life together. But something starts to go wrong near them they are unaware of, then things start to close in on them. Then out of nowhere, a family all wearing the same outfit, shows up outside of their house. Why are they there? What do they want? Who are they?

I'll stop there as not to ruin anything else, but no moment is wasted here as Peele and company build up things more and more and more and more. We have not seen a major Hollywood horror film this well thought out in years and just when you think it will get predictable or you know what will happen next, a new turn. I reminds me of when Hollywood used to always be this ambitious.

Cheers to all the actors who pull this off (I'll save anything on that for more surprises) and now that it has arrived in this Universal 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray/Blu-ray set, everyone can try to piece together all the things the film is trying to say. Don't miss this one!

Extras are not bad either, but they have spoilers just in their description, so you might want to skip this section (partly per the press release) if you have not seen the film. Exclusive to the two discs in this set are Scene Explorations - The making of three iconic scenes from the film including the Tyler house massacre, Jason's abduction and Adelaide's underground flashback.

Seven Second Massacre

It's a Trap

I Just Want My Little Girl Back

Then included on all version of the film are...

The Duality of US - Jordan Peele goes in-depth on some of the key themes and imagery in US - including Doppelgangers, Hands Across America, The Nutcracker dance scene, rabbits and the infamous 11:11 coincidence.

The Monsters Within US - Examine how the great cast were able to find their characters, whether they were playing one of the Wilsons or their sinister doppelgängers.

Tethered Together: Making US Twice - Making of a movie is hard. Making a movie where all the main cast play dual roles can be downright mind-bending. In this piece, filmmakers, cast, and crew discuss some of the technical challenges to making the film, as well as some of the design choices for the characters.

Redefining a Genre: Jordan Peele's Brand of Horror - In the space of two films, Jordan Peele has set himself apart as an invaluable artistic voice. Hear cast and filmmakers highlight what makes him so unique, as well as Jordan's own thoughts on his inspirations and the relationship between horror and comedy.

Becoming Red - Using behind-the-scenes footage from between takes, we take a closer look at Lupita Nyong'o's intense and mesmerizing performance as "Red."

Deleted Scenes

I Am Not Even Near You

Rabbit Season

That's Badass


The P is Silent

I Wanna Go Home

We're All Dying - Hilarious outtakes from the conversation between Winston Duke and Tim Heidecker on the beach.

And As Above, So Below: Grand Pas de Deux - An extended version of the dance sequence from the film, cutting between adolescent Adelaide at her recital to Red in the Underpass.

The 2160p HEVC/H.265, 2.35 X 1 Dolby Vision/HDR (10; Ultra HD Premium)-enhanced Ultra High Definition image on US is easily the best in playback quality here, Peele showing yet again he is as much a master of making HD look good as he is making suspense films. Though it may not be a total 4K production, it still looks fine and of course, not showing everything (darkness, et al) makes this constantly effective to watch. The 1080p 2.35 X 1 regular HD image on the Blu-ray is good, but it misses some detail, depth and better Video Black that gives the 4K edition its impact.

US is also the sound champ, offering Dolby Atmos 11.1 (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 mixdown for older systems) lossless sound that is very well recorded, thought out and mixed for maximum impact, music included. Subtly, it just ups the suspense and creepiness.

The anamorphically enhanced image on General looks as good as it could on DVD, but the lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 sound is uneven and not consistent, including the soundfield at times.

The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image on Night was shot on film and has some nice shots throughout (where's the Blu-ray) and the lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 is more well recorded and mixed than expected.

The 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image on Eve has some good color for an HD shoot and is solidly consistent, so no problem there with very little in the way of detail issues.

The 1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer on Krull can show the age of the master and materials used, but this is the older transfer used by Sony in the U.S., so that's to be expected. The DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix is also showing its age, but the film was shot on 35mm film with real anamorphic Panavision lenses and holds up well as a result, even here. 70mm blow-up prints were apparently also produced with 4.1 sound featuring Dolby's old A-type analog noise reduction. This will do, but Sony really needs to consider a 4K upgrade for this.

Finally we have the 1080p 1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer shot on HD for London Kills, looking decent and as good as not only any TV production, but any regular Blu-ray on the list. It and Eve both offer DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mixes that actually tie as second best sonic performers on the list with consistent soundfields and are among the better Tv releases on Blu-ray in that respect of late.

You can order the Krull Umbrella import Blu-ray, go to this link for it and other hard to find releases at:


- Nicholas Sheffo and Ricky Chiang (General)


 Copyright © MMIII through MMX fulvuedrive-in.com