‘The Illusionist’ Maintains Its Cinematic Magic In Its New Latest Re-Issue

Courtesy: 20th Century Fox/MVD Entertainment Group/MVD Visual

MVD Entertainment Group has added 20th Century Fox’s period drama The Illusionist to its MVD Marquee collection.  The company is scheduled to re-issue the movie, which stars Paul Giamatti (Sideways, Cinderella Man, 12 Years A Slave), Edward Norton (The Incredible Hulk, American History X, Birdman) and Jessica Biel (I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry, 7th Heaven, I’ll Be Home For Christmas) in its lead roles, on June 25.  The movie itself is one of the most underappreciated movies of the 1990s, and the upcoming re-issue serves to remind audiences of exactly that.  That is due in part to the movie’s story, which will be addressed shortly.  Its bonus content,  which will be addressed a little later, adds even more interest to the re-issue’s presentation.  The collective work of the movie’s cast and crew also adds to the story and will be addressed later.  When it is coupled with the movie’s story, all of the elements together show why this latest presentation of The Illusionist is more cinematic magic.

MVD Entertainment Group’s forthcoming re-issue of 20th Century Fox’s period drama The Illusionist is a positive offering for most audiences.  That is due in part to the movie’s story.  The story — based on a short story crafted by author Steven Millhauser — is a fully-engaging and entertaining presentation that is full of magic, murder, mystery and romance.  Those elements are all expertly balanced throughout the course of the story, too.  It is set in 19th Century Vienna, Austria (but was actually filmed in The Czech Republic – this will be discussed later) and features Norton and Giamatti as Eisenheim and Inspector Uhl respectively.  Eisenheim, who was friends with the Duchess Sophie van Techen (Biel) when the pair was much younger, wants to reconnect with the Duchess.  The problem for Eisenheim is that Uhl, who is working for Crown Prince Leopold (Refus Sewell – A Knight’s Tale, Dark City, Tristan + Isolde), stands in his way.  Eisenheim and Uhl eventually develop a certain almost friendship as the story progresses while tensions between Eisenheim and Leopold increase right up to the story’s climactic conclusion.  The story’s run time is listed at 109 minutes (1 hour, 49 minutes), but because of the pacing, feels longer than that noted time.  What’s truly interesting is that usually when pacing makes a move feel longer than it is, that is a bad thing.  In the case of this story though, it is the exact opposite.  Somehow, writer/director Neil Burger, who adapted Millhauser’s short story to the screen, managed to make the story work even despite that feel.  That is a tribute to his work.  Even with the pacing seeming slow at times, the story is still able to keep viewers engaged and entertained with ease.  The movie’s twist ending gives viewers a finale that is completely fulfilling.  That fulfillment finale, and the ability of the movie’s story to keep viewers engaged and entertained creates a strong foundation for The Illusionist and gives viewers more than enough reason to watch this movie.  As much as the movie’s story does for its presentation, its bonus content adds even more to the movie’s presentation.

The bonus content featured in MVD Entertainment Group’s forthcoming re-issue of The Illusionist is carried directly over from the movie’s most recent release, its 2007 release.  That includes not just the brief making of featurette and equally brief conversation with Biel, but also the feature-length audio commentary from writer/director Neil Burger.  The commentary is listed, in this re-issue, as an audio option instead of a bonus extra, unlike the 2007 home release, as an added note, but it is still the most important of the movie’s extras.  Burger  presents a lot of information in his commentary, such as the revelation that most of the movie was recorded on site in Prague, Czech Republic and that his adaptation of the original short story The Illusionist is quite different from its literary source material.  Considering the number of differences that he addresses, it makes one want to find said story and see just how different the two stories are.  That is just some of the content revealed through Burger’s commentary. He also reveals that Norton and Biel were not the first choices for their respective roles.  Those discussions are themselves certain to generate plenty of discussion, and in turn are more proof of why Burger’s commentary should have been featured in The Illusionist’s latest re-issue.  They are certainly just the tip of the proverbial iceberg that is his commentary.  As the movie progresses, he shares far more that audiences can discover for themselves.  Keeping that in mind, Burger’s bonus commentary builds on the foundation formed by the movie’s story and strengthens it that much more.  It is still not the last of the movie’s positives.  The collective work of the movie’s cast and crew couples with the story and commentary to give audiences even more to appreciate.

The work of all four of the movie’s lead cast members is worthy of applause in its own way throughout the movie.  Burger notes in the movie’s audio commentary (along with so much more already noted) that he made Eisenheim more of a sympathetic character by using Inspector Uhl more than he was in the movie’s source material.  The thing is that Norton’s abilities as an actor did not even call for more inclusion of Uhl.  Given, Norton and Giamatii were just enjoyable on-screen together as they were on their own, but Norton’s own abilities were more than enough to make his work engaging and entertaining in its own right.  His emoting during his time on stage in front of Eisenheim’s audiences is just one example of that talent.  His tears were just as believable as he reaches out for Sophie’s hand in the final act when he is on stage.  The pain that he displays translates so well, even if it is all part of his act to trick everyone.  Much the same can be said of Giamatti that is said of Norton.  When Giamatti is set alongside Sewell, he [Giamatti] shines even more while Sewell, as more of a supporting character, makes it just as easy for audiences to dislike Leopold.  Burger discusses this, too, in the commentary. Viewers will agree with his comments here, too.  What’s more, viewers will also appreciate the discussions by Burger on the amount of research that was done to make The Illusionist look just like 19th Century Vienna in terms of costumes and even buildings.  That research clearly paid off, as the resultant work of the movie’s costume and set designers created an environment that was just as believable as the work of the movie’s cast, getting back on track.  It is even noted by Burger, that Eddie Marsan (who played Eisenheim’s manager) was in his 30s when the movie was crafted, yet he looked like he was in his 50s.  That is another tribute to the work of the movie’s crew.  If one did not know what Burger revealed in the commentary, one would in fact think Marsan was in his 50s.  Getting back on the matter of the cast and crew’s work, it couples with Burger’s work on the movie’s script and his commentary, to make the movie appealing for everyone.

MVD Entertainment Group’s upcoming Blu-ray re-issue of 20th Century Fox’s The Illusionist is a work that will entertain any true movie buff.  That is due, as noted, in part to the movie’s story.  The story expertly balances elements of magic, murder, mystery and romance to make a whole that will keep viewers engaged from beginning to end.  That is due in part to the movie’s story, adapted by writer/director Neil Burger to the screen and to the commentary provided throughout the movie as a bonus commentary.  The work of the movie’s cast and crew adds to its enjoyment, too.  Each item is important in its own way to the whole of The Illusionist.  All things considered, they show why The Illusionist is its own magical cinematic diamond in the rough.  More information on this and other titles from MVD Entertainment Group is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://mvdvisual.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MVDEntertainmentGroup

Twitter: http://twitter.com/mvdentgroup

 

 

 

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Disney’s ‘Dumbo’ Reboot Will Appeal To The Movie’s Most Devoted Audiences

Courtesy: Walt Disney Studios

Walt Disney Studios is bringing its reboot of its animated classic Dumbo to DVD and Blu-ray later this month.  The movie is scheduled for release June 25, just under three months after the movie made its theatrical debut.  The movie was met with lackluster reactions from viewers and critics alike during its theatrical run, according to figures from Rotten Tomatoes and Box Office Mojo.  The lackluster reaction is justified, considering the reboot’s story.  This will be addressed a little bit later.  The bonus content that is featured with the movie’s home release does make up at least a little bit for the problems posed through the movie’s story.  It will be discussed shortly.  The movie’s average price point in its home release is another notable element to consider in examining its whole.  Each item noted here is key in its own way to the whole of the upcoming home release of Dumbo.  All things considered, the movie’s home release is a presentation that the most devoted Dumbo fans will appreciate.

Walt Disney Studios’ forthcoming home release of its reboot of Dumbo is a presentation that will appeal mostly to the most devoted fans of the classic movie.  That is due in part to the bonus content that is featured with the movie.  Among the most notable of the featured extras that make up the movie’s bonus content are featurettes that examine the movie’s costumes, set design and story.  Audiences learn through the bonus content, the train used in the update was in fact a real, scale model of the train featured in the animated 1941 movie.  There is even footage showing the train in front of a green screen to prove the train is real, and not just another CG item.  Viewers also learn through the noted features, the amount of work that went into making the movie look as close to the period as possible in which it was set.  That includes the costumes and the look of the train and sets.  That adds a certain level of appreciation to the movie, if only a little.  Another interesting addition to the movie’s bonus content list is a group of interviews with the movie’s cast and director Tim Burton (Beetlejuice, Batman, Batman Returns).  Burton reveals in his interview segments that he had not in fact worked with Michael Keaton (Batman, Batman Returns, Spiderman: Homecoming) and Danniy DeVito (Matilda, Batman, Batman Returns) since the trio last worked on Batman Returns (1992).  That is a long span of time apart.  DeVito and Keaton do share their own entertaining anecdotes about the comparison of that movie to Dumbo, joking about how the roles have changed and how Keaton loves elephants in reality, and its role in his acting.  Fellow Dumbo co-star Eva Green (Casino Royale, Penny Dreadful, Kingdom of Heaven) reveals an equally intriguing note of her own fears and how they were connected to her inexperience in acrobatics in her own interview.  That is just one more item that makes the bonus content so interesting here.  All of the items noted here will certainly engage and entertain audiences when Dumbo makes its home debut later this month.  They are just some of the interesting commentaries featured in the movie’s bonus content.  The note of Burton’s attention to detail with the sets and costumes adds its own interst, as the discussions lead to thoughts of another of Burton’s works – Big Fish.  The movie is not mentioned directly, but the latent effect is the noted thoughts and comparisons of Big Fish.  Stylistically, one cannot help but make a comparison between the movies.  To that end, audiences – even those who might not like this latest take on Dumbo – will appreciate the look of Dumbo.  Keeping that and everything else noted here in mind, the bonus content featured in the upcoming home release of Dumbo proves to be the movie’s saving grace, and more proof of the importance of a movie’s bonus content.  Staying on this train of thought, Disney’s updated take of Dumbo leaves a lot to be liked in terms of its story, the movie’s most prominent negative aspect.

The story at the center of Disney’s new Dumbo reboot is a near complete re-imagining of the 1941 movie.  In place of the original story in which Dumbo has to learn to believe in himself rather than luck, is a story that finds Dumbo basically being used by two businessmen for their own selfish purposes.  Given, DeVito’s Max Medici does ultimately prove to have a good heart, but he has to go through his own personal lesson to get there.  To that end, Max and V.A. Vandevere are both really just money-grubbers.  Max is just the lesser of two evils.  Add in the unnecessary romance subplot between Holt (Farrell) and Colette (Green) and things get even worse.  Things get worse not just because of the unnecessary romance subplot, but the very fact that said plot was so predictable.  It did not take a genius to know from early on that Colette’s character turn would happen.  As if this is not enough, the very fact that Dumbo knew just which knobs to turn and levers to pull (and could even do the noted tasks) to shut down Dreamland is just not believable.  The overly preachy animal rights message at the story’s end, and the overly preachy female empowerment messages also tied into the story do little to help the story.  That is not to say that female empowerment is a bad thing.  In fact it is a very good thing.  However, the way in which that message was delivered here was a bit more preachy than powerful, if that makes any sense.  When all of this is taken into consideration, the reality sets in that the story at the center of Disney’s new Dumbo reboot does a lot to detract from its presentation.  Keeping that in mind, it makes the movie’s average price point quite important to consider.

The average price point for the upcoming home release of Dumbo is $26.88.  That price is obtained using prices at Amazon, Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Barnes & Noble Booksellers and Books-A-Million.  At the time of this review’s posting, the movie was not listed at Disney’s official store.  The movie’s listing at movies.disney.com links to Best Buy, Target and Walmart.  While the average price point is almost $30, the movie’s pricing is right on par with every other movie that Disney has released in recent memory.  Its most inexpensive listing is through Amazon and Walmart at $24.96 while Barnes & Noble Bookseller’s price of $31.32 is the most expensive.  The continuity (of sorts) of the movie’s price in comparison to Disney’s other movies is something that viewers will applaud, especially considering the problems posed by the movie’s primary content versus the positives of its bonus content.  Keeping that in mind, while the primary content featured in Disney’s reboot of Dumbo is problematic, the movie’s most devoted fans will find it worth at least one watch.  Its bonus content does at least a little bit to make up for the story’s problems.  The pricing, for those noted devotees, is right in the same price range as Disney’s other home releases.  To that end, the movie in whole proves to be a release that will certainly appeal to a certain targeted audience

The forthcoming home release of Disney’s Dumbo reboot is an intriguing new offering from Disney.  Its bonus content is certain to keep audiences in general engaged and entertained.  Its story, on the other hand, will appeal to a much more specific viewer base.  Keeping all of this in mind, the average price range for the movie’s home release – which is in keeping with the range of Disney’s other home releases – proves to be its own positive for the movie.  Keeping all of this in mind, Dumbo’s upcoming home release will certainly appeal to a very distinct group of the movie’s audiences.  It is scheduled for release June 25.  More information on Dumbo is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://movies.disney.com/dumbo-2019

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/DisneyDumbo

Twitter: http://twitter.com/Dumbo

 

 

 

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True Disney Devotees Will Appreciate Studio’s Latest ‘Cinderella’ Re-Issue

Courtesy: Walt Disney Studios

Walt Disney Studios is set to re-issue its animated adaptation of the timeless fairy tale Cinderella again later this month.  This latest re-issue comes roughly five years after the company last re-issued the movie, and for audiences who are attentive to movies’ bonus content, is certain to generate plenty of discussion.  They are collectively, both a pro and a con in one.  While the movie’s bonus content is certain to generate its own share of discussions, the movie’s central story will create just as much discussion among viewers today as it did when it debuted so many decades ago. It will be addressed a little later.  The movie’s average price point proves just as important to discuss in examining its upcoming re-issue as the other noted elements.  Each item is important in its own way to the whole of this latest re-issue.  All things considered, Disney’s forthcoming re-issue of Cinderella proves to be an interesting offering from Walt Disney Studios and its home entertainment arm.

Walt Disney Studio’s upcoming re-issue of Cinderella will come just a year short of the 70th anniversary of the movie’s original debut when it is re-issued later this month on DVD and Blu-ray.  The movie originally debuted – according to information from IMDB.com – on March 4, 1950.  In terms of the movie’s story, nothing has changed since it made its theatrical debut some 60 years ago this year.  Now in terms of the extras featured in the movie’s home release, they have changed over the years.  The movie’s upcoming re-issue, scheduled for June 25, is no exception to that rule.  This latest issuance features some of the bonus content featured in the movie’s 2012 BD re-issue, but also features a variety of new extras.  Brought over from the 2012 re-issue are “The Real Godmother,” Behind The Magic: A New Disney Princes Fantasyland,” the movie’s alternate openings and the vintage radio broadcasts.  Not carried over into this re-issue are the Tangled short Tangled Ever After and the personalized digital storybook.  In place of those extras are “From Rags To Riches: The Making of Cinderella,” “The Cinderella That Almost Was,” “Try This Trivia On For Size” and the new featurette “In Walt’s Words: The Envisioning of Cinderella.  “From Rags To Riches: The Making Of Cinderella” is an intriguing look at the history of Cinderella, how it went from vision to storyboard to big screen.  It even features discussions with the famed Sherman Brothers about the movie’s songs.  “The Cinderella That Almost Was” envisions the original Cinderella concept and discusses Walt Disney’s role in the changes that led to the final product.  The trivia featurette is just two current Disney stars who talk about some trivia connected to Cinderella.  It is really the least of the new re-issue’s bonuses.  The making of featurette and the history on the Cinderella that almost was are more engaging, on the other hand.

Now, the lack of the Tangled short and the personalized digital storybook might upset some viewers.  In Disney’s defense, Tangled Ever After is featured on Disney’s Walt Disney Short Films Collection (2015).  Also featured in that collection are shorts, such as Frozen Fever, Prep & LandingOperation Secret Santa and John Henry.  Keeping this in mind, the fact that Tangled Ever After is not featured in Cinderella’s latest re-issue is not that much of a negative since it is still available on another, separate Disney release that features a variety of other Disney shorts.  The movie’s new and old bonus content forms a strong foundation for its upcoming re-issue, and is not its only important element.  The story at the center of the movie is just as notable as its collective bonus content.

The story at the center of Cinderella is, at its core a fairy tale about true love.  Of course, it is also a story that has been quite contentious throughout history.  Some argue that it’s just a fairy tale while others argue it creates unreal expectations for women – that prince charming will come in on his white horse and sweep them up off their feet instead of teaching the invaluable lesson of self confidence.  On the other hand, one could just as easily argue that this possible message aside, it also teaches a lesson about the last being first.  Cinderella was that classic underdog figure, and she was the “last.”  Because of her kind heart, she became the first in the end.  Now considering the source material for Disney’s take on Cinderella – the Brothers Grimm tale, which is actually quite gruesome – that argument actually holds some water.  The original tale tells a story about what happens to people who goodness versus wickedness.  Again, it is rather rough in terms of its content, but makes no bones about its lesson.  To that end, the story at the heart of Disney’s Cinderella may be different from its source material in terms of its overall content, but the original lesson is still there.  It just has been covered up by the more saccharine sweet take crafted by Walt Disney and his staff.  Keeping in mind the importance of the movie’s story and the discussions that said story is certain to generate, and the overall bonus content featured in the movie’s upcoming re-issue, the re-issue proves just as interesting in its latest re-issue as ever before.  Those elements are not the movie’s only notables.  Its average price point is notable in its own right.

The average price point of Cinderella (Signature Edition) is $26.42.  That price is achieved using prices at Disney’s official store, Amazon, Target, Best Buy, Walmart, Barnes & Noble Booksellers and Books-A-Million.  Books-A-Million’s price listing was the most expensive at the time of this review’s posting, at $39.99 while the majority of the movie’s listings sit at $24.99, including the listing at Disney’s official shop.  Amazon’s price for the movie via streaming is the least expensive at $14.99.  Considering that the average price is almost $30, but that most of the individual price listings are actually below that price and are on par with almost every other Disney release across the board, that is not an extraordinary price to pay, especially for the most devoted Cinderella fans.  Add in the importance of the movie’s combined new and old bonus content and the discussions that they will bring along with the movie’s story (and its source material), the whole proves to be a relatively affordable price that – again – the most devoted Cinderella fans will certainly appreciate.

Cinderella (Signature Edition) is a presentation that the most devoted fans of the classic Disney flick will certainly appreciate.  Even classic movie buffs who maybe are not as devoted to the movie, will appreciate it partly because of the movie’s bonus content.  Its story adds to its interest when compared to its source material.  When all of that is considered along with the movie’s average price point and listed prices, the whole proves to be a work that Disney’s most devoted audiences will enjoy.  It is scheduled for release June 25 alongside a re-issue of the movie’s live action reboot.  More information on the movie is available online now at:

 

 

Website: http://movies.disney.com/Cinderella-1950

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Cinderella

 

 

 

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CMG To Release Second Buster Keaton Collection Next Month

Courtesy: Cohen Media Group

Two more classic Buster Keaton movies are on their way.

Cohen Media Group will release The Buster Keaton CollectionVolume 2 July 9.  the two-movie collection will be available on DVD and Blu-ray.

CMG’s forthcoming collection will feature Keaton’s classic movies The Navigator and Sherlock Jr.  Both movies were released in 1924.

Sherlock Jr. finds Keaton playing the part of a movie projectionist who ends up daydreaming about the movies that he plays for audiences.  His daydreams, at one point, turn to a Sherlock Holmes story, leading him to believe he is Holmes.  It is possible this story could have been the influence for Danny Kaye’s 1947 movie The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and maybe even playright Arthur Miller’s famed story “Death of a Salesman” and its cinematic adaptations.

In The Navigator, Keaton and his lady love are stuck on a deserted ocean liner.  The liner ends up on a deserted island that is full of cannibals.

Along with the movies, audiences also get a pair of featurettes as bonuses.  “Buster Keaton: The Great Stone Face” runs 4 minutes, 25 seconds.  “Buster Keaton: The Comedian” runs 3 minutes, 51 seconds.  The bonuses focus on Keaton’s comedic approach in two separate ways.

The collection will retail for MSRP of $25.99 on DVD and $30.99 on Blu-ray.

More information on The Buster Keaton CollectionVolume 2 and other titles from Cohen Media Group is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.cohenmedia.net

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CohenMediaGroup

Twitter: http://twitter.com/cohenmediagroup

 

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CMG’s First Buster Keaton Collection Is A Must Have For Keaton Fans, Classic Cinema Lovers Alike

Courtesy: Cohen Media Group

Early next month, Cohen Media Group will release its second pairing of classic Buster Keaton movies.  The collection will feature Keaton’s 1924 movies Sherlock Jr. and The Navigator.  It will also feature a pair of mini-docs – “The Great Stone Face” and “The Comedian” – as bonuses.  The collection is scheduled for release on July 9 on Blu-ray.  While audiences await its release, they have the first collection of Keaton movies to enjoy in the meantime.  Released late last month, the first collection features Keaton’s 1926 movie The General and its 1928 follow-up, Steamboat Bill Jr.  Those two movies form the collection’s foundation and will be discussed shortly.  The bonus content that is featured alongside the movies builds on the collection’s foundation, strengthening it even more.  It will be discussed a little later.  The collection’s average price point rounds out its most important elements.  It will also be addressed later.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of The Buster Keaton Collection: Volume 1.  All things considered, they make the collection a welcome addition to the library of Buster Keaton fans as well as lovers of Hollywood’s golden age.

Cohen Media Group’s recently released debut volume of Buster Keaton movies is a welcome addition to the library of Buster Keaton fans and lovers of Hollywood’s golden age alike.  That is due in part to the movies that are featured in this first film set from the famed actor.  The General, as noted in Cohen Media Group’s recently released Buster Keaton doc The Great Buster, is considered to be the last great movie of the silent era.  The movie’s story centers on Keaton’s character Johnnie Gray (the name is a connection to the movie’s Civil War backdrop), who has to chase down a group of Union soldiers who steal his engine, “The General” as part of their plans to invade an unidentified town in Tennessee.  Adding to the intrigue is that Johnnie has to save his girlfriend (played by Marion Mack), as she was kidnapped by the soldiers in the process of the engine’s highjacking.  The story has a happy ending that will not be given away here, though it will be said that along with lots of drama and action, Keaton’s timeless physical comedy is present throughout the story.  That alone offers its own share of interest and entertainment for viewers.

The collection’s second movie, Steamboat Bill Jr. presents another romance at its core.  The difference here from The General is that the story this time is more rom-com than romantic drama.  This time, Buster plays the role of a young man named Bill Jr. who is the son of a riverboat captain.  After spending much of his time life in Boston, Bill Jr. comes south to reunite with his father, leading to an entertaining odd couple style story within itself.  That is just one of the stories featured within the movie.  The movie’s overarching story is a Romeo and Juliet-inspired work that finds Bill’s father and the father of his love interest fighting one another.  The result is that the two dads refuse to let the two young star-crossed lovers from being together.  The difference between Shakespeare’s story and this story is that it doesn’t end with the lovers taking their own lives.  Rather it ends with a happy ending that comes after a hurricane causes lots of damage to the town where the two families are living.  The storm also creates lots of opportunities for Keaton to present even more, his physical comedy chops.  Between the entertainment offered through Keaton’s physical comedy and the entertainment and engagement offered in the story, the whole of this work is just as enjoyable as The General.  Both movies considered, they create a foundation for this collection that in itself gives viewers more than enough reason to own the collection.  They are collectively just one of the set’s positives.  The bonus content featured with the collection creates its own engagement and entertainment for viewers.

The bonus content that is featured in The Buster Keaton Collection: Volume 1 offers insight from a variety of famed figures on The General and Keaton’s brand of comedy.  The commentary offered in both featurettes is taken from the previously noted doc, The Great Buster.  Famed director Quentin Tarntino offers one of the most interesting discussions in the retrospective of The General.  He notes that while the movie’s backdrop is that of the civil war, it is the only period piece of its kind that allows him to put behind him the whole North v. South element and instead just focus on the more central story of Johnnie’s quest to retrieve his engine and his girlfriend.  That is really interesting in hindsight, especially considering how many period pieces Hollywood has churned out since its golden age.  So many of those period pieces have forced their backdrops to become central to the stories, essentially taking the focus off of the stories themselves.  The General does the exact opposite.  That is why it is so enjoyable.

In regards to the commentary centered on Keaton’s physical comedy, this featurette offers just as much engagement and entertainment as the featurette centered on The General.  Comedian Bill Hader (Saturday Night Live, The Skeleton Twins, Inside Out) offers an anecdote about Keaton’s movies bringing him and his daughters together.  He notes his daughters are no older than teenagers.  That in itself is quite enlightening as it shows the reach of Keaton’s appeal.  Tarantino is also featured in this featurette.  He notes in his discussion this time, the influence that Keaton had on another famed actor, none other than Jackie Chan.  He notes Chan’s decision to do his own stunts came from watching Keaton’s work.  Yet another figure notes the power in the simplicity of Keaton’s brand of comedy.  That individual is right, too.  There is nothing overdone in any of Keaton’s acting.  That is obvious in watching both movies.  It proves the KISS method does work.  The items featured here are just some of the discussions included in The Buster Keaton Collection: Volume 1’s bonus content.  Between these discussions and others included in the featurettes, the whole of the bonus content adds even more reason for viewers to check out this single-disc collection.  When it is collectively considered alongside the movies that form the collection’s foundation, the elements together, make this collection that much more appealing for Keaton’s fans and those of Hollywood’s golden age.  When all of that is considered together, the average price point of the set proves to be money well spent.

The average price-point of The Buster Keaton Collection: Volume 1 is $23.53 on Blu-ray and $18.67 on DVD.  Those prices were reached using listings at Amazon, Wal-amrt, Target, Best Buy and Barnes & Noble Booksellers.  The title was not listed on either format at Books-A-Million.  The DVD platform was not listed at Walmart.  Considering that audiences will get all of the same primary and secondary content on DVD and Blu-ray, both prices are relatively affordable.  AT the time of this review’s posting, the listing of $22.99 at the stores of Amazon, Walmart and Best Buy is below the Blu-ray’s average price point while the $24.29 price listed at Target and Barnes & Noble Booksellers is more expensive.  Amazon, Target and Best Buy all list the collection’s DVD price  point at $17.99 while Barnes & Noble Booksellers lists the DVD at $20.70, well above the average price point of $18.67.  The other prices are just below, so simply put, consumers are given plenty of affordable options if they consider purchasing the collection on either platform.  Again, both platforms offer audiences all of the same primary and secondary content.  Keeping that in mind, the money paid (hopefully at the less expensive retailers) will be money well-spent for Keaton’s fans and fans of movies made during Hollywood’s golden age.  That is proven even more when this is considered alongside the already noted content.  All things considered, this new classic film collection featuring one of Hollywood’s greatest names, proves to be a must have for classic film buffs everywhere.

Cohen Media Group’s recently released Buster Keaton Collection: Volume 1 is a welcome addition to the libraries of Buster Keaton fans and classic film buffs in general.  That is due in no small part to the movies that are featured in the collection.  The bonus content featured with the movies adds even more for audiences to enjoy.  The single-disc collection’s average price point is affordable money well-spent on DVD and Blu-ray, considering the breadth and depth of the set’s collective primary and secondary content.  Each item is important in its own way to the whole of the collection’s presentation.  All things considered, they make The Buster Keaton Collection: Volume 1 one of this year’s best new DVDs/BDs for the family and a must have for Buster Keaton fans and classic movie buffs everywhere.  More information on this and other titles from Cohen Media Group is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://cohenmedia.net

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CohenMediaGroup

Twitter: http://twitter.com/cohenmediagroup

 

 

 

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MVD Entertainment Group Re-Issuing ‘The Andromeda Strain’

Courtesy: MVD Entertainment Group/Universal Pictures

MVD Entertainment Group is bringing Universal Pictures’ adaptation of the late Michael Crichton’s novel The Andromeda Strain back to home video.

The movie is scheduled for re-issue Tuesday on Blu-ray.  Originally having made its theatrical debut on March 12, 1971, the movie’s story follows a group of scientists who are working to stop an alien virus from wiping out mankind after a satellite carrying the virus crash lands on Earth.

The movie was nominated for two Oscars and a Golden Globe Award, and lauded by the revered film critic Roger Ebert.  Ebert said of the movie, that it is “splendid entertainment.”

The movie’s upcoming re-issue will feature a variety of extras, such as a feature-length audio commentary from critic Bryan Reesman, The featurette, “A New Strain of Science Fiction: A newly-filmed appreciation by critic Kim Newman” and original 2001 featurette, “A Portrait of Michael Crichton,” which features an interview with the late, great author.  The full list of the movie’s extras is noted below.

Bonus Materials

  • New restoration by Arrow Films from a 4K scan of the original camera negative
  • High Definition (1080p) Blu-Ray presentation
  • Original uncompressed mono audio, newly remastered for this release
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • Audio commentary by critic Bryan Reesman
  • A New Strain of Science Fiction, a newly-filmed appreciation by critic Kim Newman
  • The Andromeda Strain: Making The Film, an archive featurette from 2001 directed by Laurent Bouzereau and featuring interviews with director Robert Wise and screenwriter Nelson Gidding
  • A Portrait of Michael Crichton, an archive featurette from 2001 directed by Laurent Bouzereau and featuring an interview with author Michael Crichton
  • Cinescript Gallery, highlights from the annotated and illustrated shooting script by Nelson Gidding
  • Theatrical trailer, TV spots and radio spots
  • Image gallery
  • BD-ROM: PDF of the 192-page “cinescript” with diagrams and production designs
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Corey Brickley
  • FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Peter Tonguette and archive publicity materials

The Andromeda Strain can be ordered online via MVD Entertainment Group’s official online store.  More information on this and other titles from MVD Entertainment Group is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.mvdvisual.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MVDEntertainmentGroup

Twitter: http://twitter.com/mvdentgroup

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

 

MVD Entertainment Group To Re-Issue ‘The Illusionist’ This Month

Courtesy: 20th Century Fox/MVD Entertainment Group/MVD Visual

MVD Entertainment Group has added 20th Century Fox’s 2006 period drama The Illusionist to its MVD Marquee series.

The company is scheduled to re-issue the movie, which stars Paul Giamatti (SidewaysCinderella Man12 Years A Slave), Edward Norton (The Incredible HulkAmerican History XBirdman) and Jessica Biel (7th HeavenI Now Pronounce You Chuck & LarryI’ll Be Home For Christmas) in its lead roles.

The movie’s story, which is set in 19th Century Vienna, features Norton and Giamatti as Eisenheim and Inspector Uhl respectively.  Eisenheim wants to win the affections of the Duchess Sophie van Teschen (Biel), but Uhl stands in Eisenheim’s way, working for the Crown Prince Leopold (Rufus Sewell — A Knight’s TaleDark CityTristan + Isolde) as he, too, looks to win Sophie’s hand and heart, but for his own selfish purposes rather than for love.  The story follows Eisenheim as he uses his magic skills to win over Sophie and ultimately results in a twist ending that viewers never would have seen coming.

MVD Entertainment’s forthcoming re-issue of The Illusionist will feature the same bonus features included in the movie’s original release, a feature-length commentary from writer/director Neil Burger, a making of featurette and interview with Biel, in which she discusses the movie.

More information on this and other titles from MVD Entertainment Group is available online now at:

 

Website: http://mvdvisual.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MVDEntertainmentGroup

Twitter: http://twitter.com/mvdentgroup

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like “it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.