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Aisle Seat 2-9: Kino, Criterion & Crimson Peak
Posted By: Andy Dursin 2/8/2016 - 9:00 PM
Tim Matheson might’ve been over the hill by the time he starred in UP THE CREEK (**½, 96 mins., 1984, R), a surprisingly watchable Orion Pictures release with Matheson and fellow “Animal House” alum Stephen Furst vying to win a white water rafting contest. Yet this Samuel Z. Arkoff release still boasts genial fun for ‘80s comedy fans, even if it never quite reaches the level of hilarity its premise suggests.
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Aisle Seat 2-2: Martial Arts of a Different Kind
Posted By: Andy Dursin 2/1/2016 - 9:00 PM
The martial arts film genre underwent a series of changes in the 1980s, from the introduction of ninjas as a focal point in Cannon’s long-running, cult-favorite series to both low-budget knockoffs and major studio productions alike embracing the current fads in the post-Bruce Lee era. Two very different films – one a studio production from a veteran director, another a low-budget labor of love that was both unreleased and thought lost to the ravages of time – come to Blu-Ray this month, offering genre fans a pair of contrasting viewing experiences that are each entertaining in their own respective ways.
Comments: 1  (read on)
Aisle Seat 1-26: Twilight Time, New Releases
Posted By: Andy Dursin 1/25/2016 - 9:00 PM
Twilight Time kicks off the new year with a handful of fine new Blu-Ray additions, from a pair of glossy, widescreen studio productions to more adult, frank character studies from the late ‘60s and early ‘70s.
Comments: 3  (read on)
Aisle Seat 1-19: January Chiller Edition
Posted By: Andy Dursin 1/18/2016 - 9:00 PM
We may be just a few days into 2016 but already there’s a candidate for “Unknown Movie Discovery of the Year” on Blu-Ray: FIGURES IN A LANDSCAPE (**½, 110 mins., 1970, R), an altogether weird film that, by my count, has never been released on home video in any format in this country. Joseph Losey’s strikingly shot tale of two prisoners (played by Robert Shaw and Malcolm McDowell) trying to escape a country with a helicopter in endless pursuit has never received wide distribution since its original Cinema Center Films release over 45 years ago, making Kino Lorber’s Blu-Ray a stunning visceral experience for first-time viewers.
Comments: 1  (read on)
Aisle Seat 1-5: 2016 Premiere Edition!
Posted By: Andy Dursin 1/4/2016 - 9:00 PM
There’s noting more exciting for me than opening up a fresh batch of new Blu-Rays from Twilight Time and Kino Lorber and seeing, for the first time in high-def, catalog titles I had only previously experienced on DVD (or TV) in standard-definition. In fact, the collective efforts of labels like TT, Kino, Shout and Olive has been one of the great assets for Blu-Ray in the last year, especially as major studios license out more of their back catalog, shunning in many instances the very format they helped to establish.
Comments: 1  (read on)
Aisle Seat 12-22: Christmas & New Years Edition
Posted By: Andy Dursin 12/21/2015 - 9:00 PM
Fueled by fan interest and the resurgence of sequels/prequels/remakes/reboots, STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS smashed every box-office record this weekend in theaters around the world, making Disney’s $4 billion purchase of George Lucas’ company and all of its properties look like a bargain – especially when you factor in the millions its sequels and spin-offs (apparently coming at us on an annual basis now) are sure to generate.
Comments: 8  (read on)
Aisle Seat 12-15: Holiday Gift Guide
Posted By: Andy Dursin 12/14/2015 - 9:00 PM
Physical media might be – as the media keeps reminding us – on the downswing but there are still loads of great new releases across both the Blu-Ray and DVD formats to appease any movie buff this holiday season. Here’s a quick guide to both newly-released titles and yuletide-centric offerings for the casual viewer and genre-specific aficionado.
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Aisle Seat 12-8: Kino Classics, Ant Man, MI:5
Posted By: Andy Dursin 12/7/2015 - 9:00 PM
Kino Lorber’s Studio Classics Blu-Ray line boasts a number of exciting new releases this December, including a pair of sequels that have flown under the radar since their original release, one of the most acclaimed foreign films from the late 1980s, and a mid ‘70s American-International cult classic featuring a voluptuous, pre-Wonder Woman Lynda Carter.
Comments: 0  (read on)
Aisle Seat 12-1: December Arrival Edition
Posted By: Andy Dursin 11/30/2015 - 9:00 PM
The stylish, beautifully scored, and exceptionally well-photographed adaptation of Peter Straub’s sensational novel GHOST STORY (***, 110 mins., 1981, R; Shout Factory) manages to capture just enough of the essence of Straub’s novel to make it a recommended view. An instant bestseller, Straub’s book was quickly gobbled up, prior to its publication by Universal Pictures, hoping to turn the property into the next high-class studio genre exercise like “The Exorcist” or “The Omen.” The result was a flawed but entertaining adaptation of its source, which works best if you distance yourself from Straub’s novel and accept it as a standalone cinematic tale of the supernatural, presented by a peerless cast and crew.
Comments: 2  (read on)
Aisle Seat 11-24: The Thanksgiving Edition
Posted By: Andy Dursin 11/23/2015 - 9:00 PM
An exciting Fox Cinemascope western, a superb Jane Austen rendering from Ang Lee, a ‘70s political-conspiracy thriller, and vintage efforts by filmmakers Woody Allen and Ken Loach comprise Twilight Time’s varied Blu-Ray limited-editions for the month of November.
Comments: 0  (read on)
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Today in Film Score History:
February 14
Andre Previn begins recording his score for Challenge to Lassie (1949)
David Holmes born (1969)
Elliot Lawrence born (1925)
Frederick Loewe died (1988)
Jocelyn Pook born (1960)
Ken Thorne begins recording his score for Superman III (1983)
Merl Saunders born (1934)
Piero Umiliani died (2001)
Werner Heymann born (1886)
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