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Aisle Seat 10-15: Mid-October Halloween Rundown
Posted By: Andy Dursin 10/14/2019 - 10:00 PM
An enjoyable sleeper from late Summer ’93, MY BOYFRIEND’S BACK (***, 85 mins., 1993, PG-13; Kino Lorber) is a Touchstone comedy originally produced as “Johnny Zombie” before Disney decided to graft another pop-song onto its title (as they had countless times previously with the likes of “Taking Care of Business,” “Pretty Woman,” etc). Perhaps that had something to do with the film’s box-office failure, though horror comedies were also a hard sell back in the early ‘90s, so it probably wouldn’t have mattered either way (in fact, the movie's spoof element is actually more relevant to today’s zombie-dominated horror than what constituted the genre back at the time of its release).
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Aisle Seat 10-8: 4K Frights!
Posted By: Andy Dursin 10/7/2019 - 10:00 PM
4K owners have a quartet of new Warner releases ideal for Halloween viewing to select from this October, starting with genre favorites GREMLINS (***½, 106 mins., 1984, PG) and Stanley Kubrick’s take on Stephen King’s THE SHINING (***, 146 mins., 1980, R), more a piece of visceral, technical achievement than an engaging dramatic experience. While one benefits a bit from the 4K enhancement, the other receives a jaw-dropping transfer that ranks among the best in the format.
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Aisle Seat 10-1: Kino Lorber, Holocaust on Blu-Ray
Posted By: Andy Dursin 9/30/2019 - 10:00 PM
Kino Lorber’s September slate of Studio Classics offers movie buffs a number of fascinating titles debuting on Blu-Ray: a DeMille color epic from the early ‘40s, two Hitch-like Universal ‘60s thrillers, and a trio of comedy classics that would instantly define “the Ealing touch” in screen comedy.
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Aisle Seat 9-24: Autumn Arrival Edition
Posted By: Andy Dursin 9/23/2019 - 10:00 PM
Some of us growing up in the early ’80s found the ideal outlet for our “Star Wars” fixation by gravitating towards V (197 mins., 1983, Warner Archive) – Kenneth Johnson’s tale of an extraterrestrial race that lands on Earth pretending to be friendly, but really is out to steal our water for their barren planet and bring all of us back to their home as food! Implementing a fascist rule over Earth, the Visitors conspire to cover up their deadly deeds through the manipulation of media and propaganda, creating some none-too-subtle comparisons to Nazisms in the process.
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Aisle Seat 9-20: RAMBO - LAST BLOOD Review
Posted By: Andy Dursin 9/18/2019 - 10:00 PM
Stallone’s prior entry should’ve been Rambo’s swan song – the iconic action hero was deserving of more than the limp cinematic rubble he’s finally reduced to here.
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Aisle Seat 9-10: 22nd Anniversary Edition
Posted By: Andy Dursin 9/9/2019 - 10:00 PM
Boasting an all-new “Final Cut” as well as director Francis Ford Coppola’s prior theatrical and “Redux” versions, Lionsgate’s truly spectacular 4K UHD/Blu-Ray edition of APOCALYPSE NOW (***½, 147/183/202 mins., 1979, R) is unquestionably the year’s most impressive home video catalog release to date. Coppola’s troubled yet intermittently brilliant, surreal film has never looked or sounded as dazzling as it does here, thanks to a UHD format release that marks another technological upgrade for Coppola and cinematographer Vittorio Storaro’s sumptuous widescreen images.
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Aisle Seat 8-27: Labor Day Edition
Posted By: Andy Dursin 8/26/2019 - 10:00 PM
There are fewer cinematic eras more fascinating than the late ‘60s. Iconoclast filmmakers like Stanley Kubrick unleashed classics like “2001” while previously reliable genres like the movie musical nearly drowned several major studios. 20th Century Fox’s “Star!”, Paramount’s “Darling Lili” and Universal’s SWEET CHARITY (145/151 mins., 1968, G) proved to be big-budget disappointments from a genre that once reliably drew audiences – a sign of shifting times and attitudes, and also, perhaps, the respective source material involved in each instance. In the case of the latter, Bob Fosse’s adaptation of his Broadway hit proves to be a weird, highly watchable and yet ultimately unsatisfying fusion of a “mod” downer with old-fashioned musical-comedy sensibilities, as strange as the teaming of Fosse with writer Neil Simon sounds on paper.
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Aisle Seat 8-13: August Assault Edition
Posted By: Andy Dursin 8/12/2019 - 10:00 PM
Now the biggest global hit of all-time (not counting inflation), AVENGERS: ENDGAME (181 mins., 2019, PG-13; Disney) wraps up Marvel’s two-film behemoth and also puts a lid on over a decade of some 21 prior movies featuring the comic book company-turned-Disney brand’s super-heroes. It’s not particularly witty or artfully executed, but as far as fan-service films go, this overlong but entertaining picture gets the job done, and wisely focuses on the original core of Avengers members for much of its running time instead of the “Marvel All-Star Rally” featured in its exhausting predecessor.
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Aisle Seat 7-30: A Mid-Summer Wrap
Posted By: Andy Dursin 7/29/2019 - 10:00 PM
Shout! Factory’s upcoming Autumn slate is their best yet, chock full of long-awaited Blu-Rays from the Paramount vaults (“Prophecy,” “Body Parts,” “The Fan”) and one of the most exciting film restorations for genre buffs in years: the original theatrical color of the Frank Langella “Dracula” (1979), available for viewers to see in its widescreen dimensions for the very first time since its initial theatrical run. While some of us will be saving our pennies for Shout’s forthcoming titles, the label has a number of new releases due this month including the Blu-Ray debut of VICE SQUAD (97 mins., 1982, R), a cable cult-favorite restored here in a 4K scan of original film elements.
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Aisle Seat 7-16: Summertime Disc Delights
Posted By: Andy Dursin 7/15/2019 - 10:00 PM
Sci-fi addicts need little introduction to Gerry and Sylvia Anderson’s memorable ‘70s series SPACE: 1999 (aprx. 40 hours, 1975-77), which makes its way to Blu-Ray this month in a marvelous package from Shout! Factory – one that also debuts the series’ second season in a U.S. format release for the first time.
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Today in Film Score History:
October 21
Alan Silvestri begins recording his score for Predator 2 (1990)
Brian Banks born (1955)
David Newman begins recording his score for Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1987)
David Shire begins recording his score for Rear Window (1998)
Gianni Ferrio died (2013)
Gregory Smith records his score for the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode “The Assignment” (1996)
Jerry Goldsmith records his replacement score for Seven Days in May (1963)
John W. Morgan born (1946)
Joseph Mullendore born (1914)
Lyle Workman born (1957)
Malcolm Arnold born (1921)
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