9 4K (2009/4K Ultra HD
Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie
(2020/Blu-ray w/DVD/*both Sony)/Mr.
Movement Blu-ray)/The Plot
(1940/MGM/Blu-ray/**both Warner Archive)
Ultra HD Picture: B Picture: B-/B & C+/B-/C+/B Sound: B/B
& C+/B-/C+/B- Extras: B-/B-/C+/C-/C Main Programs:
Plot Against America
DVD set and Waterloo
Blu-ray are now only available from Warner Bros. through their Warner
Archive series and all can be ordered from the link below.
releases could be seen as genre works, but in their own ways, they
try to exceed that and often succeed....
(2009) is now available in a version worthy of how good the film
looks and sounds as good as ever. As relevant now as it ever was, we
reviewed it on VDD years ago at this link:
in South Africa, whose problems are sadly holding steady, no one
would have expected the southern border of the U.S. would start to
resemble this film at the time of its release, but here we are. I
liked how the film built up into its remarkable conclusion and though
it was not a gigantic box office hit, it was still a hit with huge
critical acclaim. Why after all these years do we still have no
sequel or other kind of follow-up? Rumors had circulated about
another film, but they soon faded. Another such film would be able
to add all kinds of new ideas now.
are the same as the previous DVD, but we get Digital Copy too.
Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie
(2020) continues the hit TV show that people still talk about,
reference and has only grown in popularity since it wrapped up a few
years ago. I thought it was a fairly good show, but was not as big a
fan as the following links to my coverage of the series will show:
One & Two
this point, Jesse (Aaron Paul, whose star has risen all the more
since the show's end too) has made a big escape following the many
events of the series and now has to figure out where he goes now and
what he wants to do and can do with his life. As is the case with
the entire TV show, this comes with its sense of dread that is meant
to inform, haunt and make realistic the show and its themes.
can buy some of this and this is an ambitious continuation, with the
energy and money there, plus the makers are serious about making this
work. Whether fans will think this or not is another story, but Paul
is more than able to handle the lead role and you can see why he
remains a very underrated actor. Worth seeing for what does work,
but do not expect too much.
in this steel-case packaging include
Blu-ray exclusive Feature Length Audio Commentary with Vince Gilligan
and Aaron Paul, Deleted and Extended Scenes, Gag Reel and Scene
Studies with Vince Gilligan, while both discs offer a Super
Commentary!: An ensemble audio commentary featuring 46 members of the
cast and crew, Making
A behind-the-scenes documentary featuring never-before-seen
interviews with the cast and crew, Snow
Globe: A Breaking Bad Short,
Pete in the Box
teaser, Rocker Salvage Commercial, Vamonos Pest Commercial,
''Enchanted'' by Chloe x Halle and Visual Effects Design Galleries
(1961) has the internationally famous movie star directing himself as
the title character, a teacher who is happy and satisfied with his
life, content to live such a life and proud of its high standards.
This is not easy when the school's Headmaster (the great Leo McKern)
is more interested in rich parents pumping money into the school or
the students themselves keep having problems he can only do so much
to help with. He is also more of a conformist than he should be, but
one with a moral center.
(Michael Gough in one of his best performances) is one of his best
friends, is at the school and encourages him to be himself in pursuit
of the daughter of The Headmaster, Ernestine (Billie Whitelaw in her
sexy early years) with mixed results. Things take a turn for the
unexpected when a rich schemer (Herbert Lom, a few years before
joining Sellers for the hugely successful Pink
films) and his sexy, singing mistress Suzy (Nadia Gray) decided to
use him to make a fortune while paying him peanuts in a crazy fraud
the film can be uneven, it works well when it works and has a certain
sense of joy and honesty we do not see in films (or other media)
today. What also helps are little scenes that land up being so much
more. Also starring John Neville, Joan Sims, Martita Hunt and
Pauline Shepherd, Sellers was trying to make a big statement in
subtle ways and often succeeds. Glad the film has been restored as
much as possible.
include a nicely illustrated
24-page booklet on the film with notes on the film's rediscovery by
BFI curator Vic Pratt and a new essay by Roger Lewis, author of The
Life and Death of Peter Sellers,
while the disc adds an HD-restored copy of Let's
(1951) - a madcap short film starring Peter Sellers (in multiple
roles ala Dr.
and his Goon Show co-star Spike Milligan, The
Poetry of Realism
(2019) - Kat Ellinger video essay on auteur Marcel Pagnol, the
playwright of Topaze and an excellent Abigail McKern Interview (2019)
- Leo McKern's daughter discusses her father's life and career as
well as hers and includes some great stories.
Plot Against America
(2020) is based on Philip Roth's book that imagines that Right-Wing
leaning Charles Lindberg becomes President of the United States
during the WWII era and takes the U.S. in a Nazi-like direction.
Told in six episodes, suddenly also more timely than ever, it is well
done, consistent and very accurate about what the book considered and
what can happen to any democracy that does not take voting and
cast is also a huge plus including Anthony Boyle, Winona Ryder, David
Krumholtz, Zoe Kazan, Morgan Spector, Michael Kostroff, Azhy
Robertson, Jacob Laval, Caleb Malis and John Turturro. Additionally,
David Simon and Ed Burns produced this and the episodes run very
smoothly, playing like a great companion to dystopian series like The
This series deserves much more success than it already has received
and it is one of the best shows of its kind in the last few years.
Don't miss it!
include two brief behind-the-scenes clips on the mini-series:
To The Set
(1940) has Vivien Leigh and Robert Taylor meeting at the title locale
and falling in love, but just before WWII breaks out. When he is
reported dead, she is so angry and distraught, she becomes a 'lady of
the night' throwing herself away. But is he really dead?
melodrama is a very smart production with fine acting that shows
Leigh in great form and shows Taylor (later known for his two big TV
was a more formidable lead than many remember or have seen enough of
late. These two have convincing chemistry and it is the top reason
to see this film. But I like the pacing and supporting cast, plus
there are some great set pieces, so it is the kind of classic worth
revisiting, especially when it is as well-restored as it is here.
include an Original Theatrical Trailer and hour-long radio drama
adaptation from 9/28/1951 in lossless sound.
for playback performance. The 2160p 1.85 X 1, HEVC/H.265, HDR (10;
Ultra HD Premium)-enhanced Ultra High Definition image on District
9 is the most impressive version we will ever see, a film shot in
4K, finished with plenty of CGI digital visuals in 2K and with plenty
of blurring images. This is more stable and color-accurate (like the
35mm print of the film I saw in its first run release) and better
than the more motion-blur prone 1080p Blu-ray, so this is the best
way to see the film now outside of a quality film print. The 4K
version has lossless Dolby Atmos, but the film 0often has simple
stereo for the extended TV reporting sequences, so it only kicks in
so much and is only marginally better than the
DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix on the regular Blu-ray.
The 4K looks as good as anything on this list.
1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image on El Camino
looks surprisingly good in an apparent attempt to just outdo the way
the Breaking Bad series looked and was produced, yet it still
retains some of its style. Some shots are darker than I liked (or
bought) and color can be limited, but it is supposed to be that way.
The DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1
lossless mix is also impressive, seeming intended for theatrical
release and with some real punch (no pun intended) down to some good
.1 LFE effects. The combination will please fans, but the
anamorphically enhanced 2.35 X 1 image on the DVD is weaker, as is
the lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 mix that accompanies it. This is
included for convenience at best.
1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer on Mr.
was originally shot in the old
CinemaScope format and that in itself presents some flaws and
distortions, but this is a lost film and the print they scanned at 2K
from the BFI vaults sadly has faded Eastman Color that is partly lost
and faded. You can see how good the color was in some shots and
imagine it in others based on parts of the frame, but the full color
was not totally recovered sadly. Still, this is sharper than a DVD
and the PCM 2.0 sound is simple stereo at best, but often sounds
monophonic. Guess we're lucky this survived as well as it did, but
its near loss is inexcusable.
1080p 1.33 X 1 black & white digital High Definition image
transfer on Waterloo
rarely shows the age of the materials used, is far superior a
transfer to all previous releases of the film and shows the high
quality gloss of MGM's old monochrome film lab work. Detail and
depth will surprise at points and the
DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 2.0 Mono lossless mix can sound good, but
only so much can be done for the age of the audio despite the good
work at the time here.
leaves the anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image on America a
little soft, stylized and consistent, doing a pretty good job
capturing the look of the period. The lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 is
also a little weak, but what can you expect from this older format?
Bet this would look and sound good on Blu-ray or even 4K, which we
hope to see sometime in the future, but this is well done just the
order either of the Warner Archive Plot Against America DVD
set and/or Waterloo Bridge Blu-ray, go to this link for them
and many more great web-exclusive releases at: