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26 July 2016

Arrow Video USA commits CRIMES OF PASSION (Review)

Ken Russell's ballsy masterpiece CRIMES OF PASSION hit Blu-ray from Arrow Video.  Ex-high school jock turned suburban dad Bobby Grady awakens to his unhappy and loveless marriage when he does a surveillance job following an icy designer suspected of corporate espionage and instead discovers that she has adopted an alter ego as prostitute China Blue who uses elaborate games of fantasy to enthrall her customers and protect herself from true intimacy.  As the two enter into a passionate affair fraught with self-doubt, China Blue is also the object of obsession by a psychotic street preacher who wants to save her soul or become her.  Kathleen Turner, Anthony Perkins, John Laughlin, Annie Potts, and Bruce Davison star.

REVIEW LINK: Arrow Video USA (US) Region A/B Blu-ray/Region 1/2 NTSC DVD (DVD Drive-in)

CRIMES OF PASSION Blu-ray/DVD combo specs:
  • Blu-ray:
    • 1080p24 MPEG-4 AVC 1.85:1 widescreen
    • English LCPM 1.0 mono
  • DVD:
    • 16:9 anamorphic 1.85:1 widescreen
    • English Dolby Digital 1.0 mono
  • Optional English SDH subtitles
  • Director's Cut (112 minute) and Unrated (107 minutes) Versions
  • Audio Commentary by director Ken Russell and writer/producer Barry Sandler (director's cut only)
  • "Barry Sandler: Life of Crime" featurette
  • "Rick Wakeman: Compsing for Ken" featurette
  • Deleted Scenes (with optional commentary by writer/producer Barry Sandler)
  • "It's a Lovely Life" music video
  • Theatrical Trailer 
  • Comes with a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Twins of Evil
  • First pressing only includes an illustrated collector's booklet containing new writing from Paul Sutton, an archive interview with Ken Russell and correspondence between Russell and Kathleen Turner.

Arrow Video USA stitches SUTURE (review)

Inspired by THE FACE OF ANOTHER and various sixties paranoia films like THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE and SECONDS comes this black and white nineties indie thriller.  Lookalike half-brothers Clay and Vincent (played by black actor Dennis Haysbert and white actor Michael Harris) meet shortly after their father's mysterious murder.  Vincent switches identities with Clay and then tries to kill him with a car bomb.  With his face destroyed and his memory gone, Clay wakes up in the hospital with everyone believing he is Vincent, including the police lieutenant who is investigating him for his father's murder.  As his face is reconstructed and he is filled in on Vincent's life, Clay is troubled by dreams that suggest an entirely different life which his psychologist interprets symbolically.  In the meantime, his brother Vincent has returned and is planning to kill him before he can remember his real identity.

REVIEW LINK: Arrow Video USA (US) Region ALL Blu-ray/Region 0 NTSC DVD (DVD Drive-in)

SUTURE Blu-ray/DVD specs:
  • Blu-ray:
    • 1080p24 MPEG-4 AVC 2.35:1 widescreen
    • English LPCM 2.0 stereo
  • DVD:
    • 16:9 anamorphic 2.35:1 widescreen
    • English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo
  • Optional English SDH subtitles
  • Audio Commentary by directors Scott McGehee & David Siegel and producer Steven Soderbergh
  • "Lacerations: The Making of Suture"
  • Deleted Scenes (with optional filmmaker commentary)
  • "Birds Past" short film
  • Stills Gallery
  • U.S. Theatrical Trailer
  • European Theatrical Trailer

Vinegar Syndrome weds PETEY WHEATSTRAW (review)

Rudy Ray Moore sheds his Dolemite identity and makes a deal with the devil as PETEY WHEATSTRAW: THE DEVIL'S SON-IN-LAW.  When a comedian is assassinated by his rivals, he is given the opportunity to come back and take revenge if he marries the devil's daughter and produces an heir.  Petey comes back and unleashes telekinetic hell on his murderers and then must figure out how to keep the devil from collecting his due.

REVIEW LINK: Vinegar Syndrome (US) Region ALL Blu-ray/Region 0 NTSC DVD (DVD Drive-in)

PETEY WHEATSTRAW Blu-ray/DVD specs:
  • Blu-ray:
    • 1080p24 MPEG-4 AVC 1.85:1 widescreen
    • English DTS-HD Master Audio 1.0 mono
  • DVD:
    • 16:9 anamorphic 1.85:1 widescreen
    • English Dolby Digital 1.0 mono
  • Optional English SDH subtitles
  • Audio Commentary by Rudy Ray Moore biographer Mark Jason Murray, co-star & set designer Jimmy Lynch, and closing comments by writer & director Cliff Roquemore
  • "I, Dolemite Part III: Petey Wheatstraw" featurette
  • Shooting Locations Revisited
  • Still Gallery
  • Soundtrack (34 minutes)
  • Trailers for DISCO GODFATHER, THE HUMAN TORNADO, and DOLEMITE
  • Reversible Cover

22 July 2016

Strand Releasing initiates the SWORN VIRGIN (review)

In order to escape the life of a wife and servant in the strict and unforgiving Albanian mountain village, orphan Hana becomes Mark, living as a man but swearing away her right to love.  When she leaves the village to find her long-lost cousin in Milan, she discovers that the relative freedom to live as a woman in the city comes with a very different set of challenges in this film from the novel by Elvira Dones.

REVIEW LINK: Strand Releasing (US) Region 1 NTSC DVD (DVDBeaver)

SWORN VIRGIN DVD specs:
  • 16:9 anamorphic 2.35:1 widescreen
  • Albanian/Italian Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Optional English subtitles
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Previews


Strand Releasing grows up with BABA JOON (review)

In this coming-of-age story, Yitzhak pushes himself beyond endurance to build up his family turkey farm but discovers that his son Moti has not only inherited his mechanical acumen but also his stubbornness.  Moti has not love for the monotony or the cruelty of turkey farming and finds a kindred spirit when his uncle Dariush visits from America.  The battle of wills between father and son soon opens up old wounds between the two brothers and their differing relationships with their own alternately kind and cold father.

REVIEW LINK: Strand Releasing (US) Region 1 NTSC DVD (DVDBeaver)

BABA JOON DVD specs:
  • 16:9 anamorphic 1.85:1 widescreen
  • Hebrew/Persian Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Optional English subtitles
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Previews

Frightfest is taught THE LESSON (review)

When two secondary school students run afoul of a teacher driven to the end of his wits, they are abducted and made a captive audience to a deadly nail gun-assisted lesson in empathy and human nature in this British gorefest.

REVIEW LINK: Icon Home Entertainment (UK) Region 2 PAL DVD (DVDBeaver)

THE LESSON DVD specs:
  • 16:9 anamorphic 1.78:1 widescreen
  • English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo
  • Optional English HoH subtitles
  • Outtakes
  • Frightfest Introduction
  • Previews

Frightfest trips LANDMINE GOES CLICK (review)

Three friends vacationing in the mountains of Georgia are in for a hell of a time when one of them accidentally trips an old Russian landmine.  While one goes to get help, the other is rooted to the spot while the other is left vulnerable to the machinations of a predatory Georgian hunter.

REVIEW LINK: Icon Home Entertainment (UK) Region 2 PAL DVD (DVDBeaver)

LANDMINE GOES CLICK DVD specs:
  • 16:9 anamorphic 2.35:1 widescreen
  • English Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo
  • Optional English HoH subtitles
  • Frightfest Introduction
  • Previews

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