Universal Pictures’ ‘Black Angel’ Is One Of Hollywood’s Most Underrated Film Noir Flicks

Courtesy: Arrow Video

Arrow Video and MVD Entertainment Group will resurrect Universal Pictures’ little-known 1946 film noir flick Black Angel later this month.  The movie, starring Peter Lorre (20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, The Maltese Falcon, Arsenic & Old Lace), June Vincent (The Creeper, Shed No Tears, Can’t Help Singing) and Dan Duryea (The Flight of the Phoenix, Scarlet Street, Too Late For Tears) is scheduled for release January 28 on Blu-ray.  The movie’s central story proves that while it might not have been among the genre’s most well-known features in its initial debut, is still a work that every noir fan will appreciate.  The bonus content featured with the movie’s home release adds even more appeal to its presentation.  That combined primary and secondary content makes the movie’s average price point money well-spent by any classic movie buff and film noir aficionado.  Keeping all of this in mind, Arrow Video’s forthcoming reissue of Black Angel proves itself a presentation that is a must have for all of the noted viewers.

Movies today just are not what they were during Hollywood’s golden era.  Hollywood (and even so many independent studios) rely entirely too much on sex, violence and special effects than on anything with any real substantive content.   Thankfully, Arrow Video and MVD Entertainment Group are going to give audiences another alternative to all of that excess later this month when they reissue Universal Pictures’ 1948 noir flick Black Angel.  This movie is a work that classic film buffs and noir aficionados alike will welcome openly.  That is due in part to its story, which abounds in content.  The story, based on the novel by author Cornell Woolrich, centers on the murder of the fictional singer Mavis Marlowe and the search for her killer.  The man accused of her murder Kirk Bennett (John Phillips – 7 Men From Now, Heldorado, John Paul Jones) is accused of taking her life and is sentenced to death for the crime.  However, Kirk’s wife Catherine (played by Vincent) doesn’t believe her cheating husband is guilty, so she works with Marlowe’s estranged husband Martin Blair (Duryea) to prove Kirk’s innocence and save him from the gas chamber.  Female viewers especially will appreciate the story because as Martin and Catherine work to prove Kirk’s innocence, Kirk finds himself falling for Catherine, but she never gives into his charms, staying loyal (ironically) to her husband who himself had cheated on her with Mavis.  In the end, Kirk is proven innocent.  How he is saved will not be revealed here.  That will be saved for audiences to discover on their own.  During the course of the story, Roy Chanslor, who adapted Woolrich’s story for the screen, manages to keep viewers engaged and entertained as Catherine and Martin go undercover at a night club to investigate the crime.  He [Chanslor] does a good job with the use of his red herring in the investigation.  Viewers will agree that element adds even more enjoyment to the story since it does throw a bit of a proverbial wrench in the works.  As a matter of fact, it will leave eagle-eyed viewers to go back and recall a certain subtle element from earlier in the story that helps determine the identity of the true killer.  By the story’s end, audiences will know that they have taken in a story that even despite its changes from its literary source material (which is discussed in the movie’s bonus content), is still an enjoyable story in itself.

The story at the center of Black Angel does a lot to make it an enjoyable presentation for classic movie buffs and film noir aficionados.  It is just one part of what makes the movie’s forthcoming home release so appealing.  The bonus content included with the story builds on the foundation formed by the story to make the movie’s presentation even more appealing.  One of the bonuses featured with the movie’s reissue is a retrospective on the movie by film historian Neil Sinyard.  Sinyard has provided commentary for other reissues from Arrow Films and Arrow Academy.  He points out in this presentation’s commentary, Woolrich actually was not fond of Chanslor’s adaptation of his novel.  Maybe that is because of the changes that Chanslor made as he wrote the story’s screenplay.  This will be discussed a little more in-depth shortly.  Sinyard also makes note of the fact that Woolrich’s biographer ironically did like the movie.  Sinyard points out the reason for this was that it ‘caught something essentially about Woolrich’s personality both personal and artistic.”  The discussion on Black Angel as a possible reflection on Woolrich’s personality is just one of the interesting notes that Sinyard brings up in his roughly 20-minute retrospective.  He also goes into a discussion on the movie’s casting, noting that by the time that the movie came along, Duryea was already a very well-known actor, having played villains (or heavies as they are also known) in a number of films prior to this work.  Sinyard points out that Duryea is actually a presentation of Woorich himself, and that added to the reason for Woolrich’s biographer appreciating the adaptation.  Along with the note of Duryea and his possible connection to Woolrich, Sinyard also shares a funny anecdote about supporting actor Broderick Crawford (All The King’s Men, A Night Before Christmas, Born Yesterday), who portrays in this movie, Police Captain Flood.  He tells the story of an alleged run-in between Crawford, who also had a history of playing bad guys in cinema prior to this flick, and the late, great Frank Sinatra.  The story that Sinyard shares involves Crawford allegedly getting into an altercation with Sinatra and doing something peculiar with Sinatra’s toupee.  Lorre is also addressed by Sinyard, albeit briefly.  He jokes about not knowing how Lorre could deliver his lines while having a cigarette “dangling from his bottom lip.”  That in itself will bring its own share of laughs from viewiers.  Sinyard also addresses the movie’s soundtrack and its role in the story as well as director Roy William Neill, stressing Black Angel was actually Neill’s final film before his death.  He applauds (and rightfully so) Neill’s work behind the lens, citing specific examples for his praise of Neill in the process.

Writer and film scholar Alan K. Rode (pronounced roadie) adds even more enjoyment to the movie with his feature-length commentary.  Right off the bat, Rode does actually get one fact wrong, noting that Catherine is trying to save her husband from the electric chair.  It is clearly pointed out during the story that he faces the gas chamber, not the electric chair, but he [Rode] can be forgiven for this misstep.  It is the only item that is misspoken through the course of the movie.  Rode expands on Sinyard’s commentary, noting that Duryea was paid as an outsider for his part in this movie since she was not a contract actor for Universal Pictures.  At another point, Rode points out that Vincent was not the first choice for the role of Catherine.  In fact, Ava Gardner was the initial choice for the role, he points out.  Rode also points out that Duryea actually played the piano in this movie, rather than just playing against a tape.  He points out that Duryea learned five songs so that he could actually perform them here.  This is important in that it added to the story’s believability.  Along the same line, the song ‘Heartbreak’ was sung by Vincent.  This adds even more to the story, both for its irony and the realism.  An extensive background history of Neill is also presented by Rode during his commentary, including his earliest days.  Rode points out that Woolrich’s original book was told from a first-hand perspective from Catherine and that there were four characters included in the book that were omitted in the screenplay adaptation.  Maybe that played into Woolrich’s dislike of how his book was translated to the screen.  Rode also points out the fact that Duryea was completely different off screen than his characters.  He notes that some women were such fans of Duryea’s characters that despite those characters’ despicable nature, his female fans liked that aspect.  He states that Duryea was so concerned by the fan letters that he took them to a psychiatrist friend of his and asked what to do.  Rode adds in, he was so concerned about the reaction of his fans to his characters that he and his wife went over the top in every day life to make sure people knew the characters he played were just that.  This shows that crazy fans today are nothing new.  Everything noted here is discussed within the first half hour of Black Angel’s 80-minute run time.  The rest of the movie offers audience just as much, if not more, commentary to appreciate.  That includes a funny recollection of an off-screen interaction between Lorre and another actor in a movie and how it led to a bit of a scuffle in the movie in question.  When all of this is considered alongside Sinyard’s retrospective, the whole of the bonus content proves to be more than worth the watch.  It adds so much to the movie’s overall presentation and makes the movie’s average price point that much more worth paying.

The average price point of Black Angel is $32.20.  That price was reached by averaging listings at Amazon, Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Barnes & Noble Booksellers, Books-A-A-Million and MVD Entertainment Group’s store.  Considering that the movie’s reissue this time out is being handled by a British company, that makes it an import.  So to that end, that price is right about on par with most imports.  Amazon, Target, Best Buy and Barnes & Noble Booksellers each have listings below that average point.  Their listings do not even break the $30 mark as a matter of fact.  Walmart ($33.09), Books-A-Million $39.95) and MVD Entertainment Group (also $39.95) all break that average.  Again, audiences should keep in mind that this reissue is an import, so all of the prices are in line with most DVD and BD import prices.  Regardless of which retailer one chooses, the money paid is worth it considering everything that this presentation offers audiences.  Add in the general rarity of the movie’s release, it makes the price, which will not break anyone’s bank, that much more appealing.  Keeping this in mind along with the content, the whole of Black Angel becomes a presentation that lovers of classic film and especially film noir will enjoy.  It is also another example of why Arrow Films/Arrow Academy and MVD Entertainment Group are quickly becoming some of the leading names in home entertainment.

More information on Black Angel and other titles from Arrow Films is available online at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.arrowfilms.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ArrowFilmsVideo

 

 

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Arrow Video Announces Release Date For ‘Black Angel’ BD Re-Issue

Courtesy: Arrow Video

Arrow Video will resurrect Universal Pictures’ 1946 crime noir flick Black Angel later this month.

The movie, starring Peter Lorre (The Maltese Falcon20,000 Leagues Below The SeaArsenic & Old Lace), June Vincent (The CreeperShed No TearsCan’t Help Singing) and Dan Duryea (The Flight of the PhoenixScarlet StreetToo Late For Tears), is scheduled for release Jan. 28 on Blu-ray.  It focuses on the death of singer Mavis Marlowe (Constance Dowling — Boston Blackie and the LawBlind SpotKnickerbocker Holiday) and the search for her killer.

Kirk Bennett (John Phillips — 7 Men From NowHeldoradoJohn Paul Jones) is convicted in Marlowe’s death, even though he is innocent. Knowing Bennett is innocent, Martin Blair (Duryea) joins Bennett’s wife Catherine (Vincent) and shady nightclub owner Marko (Lorre) to prove Bennett’s innocence.

Based on the novel by author Cornell Woolrich and directed by Roy William Neill (The Scarlet ClawFrankenstein Meets The Wolf ManMurder Will Out), the movie will feature a variety of extras to add to the package.  One of those new bonuses is a new feature-length commentary from writer and film scholar Alan K. Rode.  A new retrospective by film historian Neil Sinyard is also featured as a bonus to the movie.  The first pressings will feature a collector’s booklet that features new writing on the film by author Philip Kemp.

The full list of the movie’s bonus content is noted below.  Pre-orders are open now.

Bonus Materials

  • Brand new restoration from original film elements by Arrow Films
  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation
  • Uncompressed Mono 1.0 PCM audio soundtrack
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • New audio commentary by the writer and film scholar Alan K. Rode
  • A Fitting End, a new video appreciation by the film historian Neil Sinyard
  • Original trailer
  • Gallery of original stills and promotional materials
  • Reversible sleeve featuring two artwork options
  • FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by author Philip Kemp

More information on this and other titles from Arrow Video is available online at:

Website: http://www.arrowfilms.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ArrowFilmsVideo

 

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CNN Films, Magnolia Pictures’ Gilda Radner Bio Is The Best Of 2019’s New Documentary Field

Courtesy: CNN Films/Magnolia Pictures

Movies based on actual events and biased news from both sides of the aisle have done so much damage to the world.  The movies based on actual events are over embellished forgettable works that tell half the story if even that.  The biased news on both sides of the aisle tells just as little as the noted movies, if not less.  To that end, one can’t help but be very thankful for all the new documentaries that are released each year.  The documentaries released this year went a long way toward making up for the problems caused by the noted news and movies, so many that there were more than enough to fit on any critic’s list of the year’s top new documentaries, but this critic tried to assemble a fitting list.

This year’s list features documentaries centered on topics, such as the history of Country Music, the Apollo 11 mission and a famed movie star.  Each documentary brings its own important and enjoyable presentation for audiences thanks to its unique content and story.  From one to the next, each proves itself fully deserving of a spot on any critic’s list of the year’s top new docs.  This critic’s list features, as with previous lists, the top 10 titles from the year as well as five honorable mention titles for a total  of 15 titles.  This list’s titles come from PBS, Cohen Media Group, Magnolia Pictures and even Shout! Factory, so they are not just from one company.  In other words, there is some diversity here.  Without any further ado, here for your consideration if Phil’s Picks 2019 Top 10 New Documentaries

 

PHIL’S PICKS 2019 TOP 10 NEW DOCUMENTARIES

  1. Love, Gilda
  2. Bad Reputation
  3. American ExperienceChasing The Moon
  4. Buster KeatonThe Great Buster
  5. Ken BurnsCountry Music
  6. 8 Daysto The Moon and Back
  7. American ExperienceSealab
  8. NeverEnding ManHayao Miyizaki
  9. NOVAApollo’s Daring Mission
  10. Sinatra in Palm SpringsThe Place He Called Home
  11. NOVALast B-24
  12. NOVAPluto & Beyond
  13. NOVAFirst Horse Warriors
  14. NatureDogs in the Land of Lions
  15. Nature: A Squirrel’s Guide To Success

 

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CMG Bringing Swedish Dramedy Home To American Audiences Next Month

Courtesy: Cohen Media Group

Cohen Media Group is bringing a new overseas dramedy to American audiences in 2020.

The company recently announced it will release Britt-Marie Was Here Jan. 14 on DVD and Blu-ray.  The Swedish import made its domestic theatrical debut Sept. 20.  based on the best-selling novel by author Fredrik Backman, the story follows its titular character whose 40-year marriage to her husband has just ended after she discovered his infidelity.

In making a new start for herself, Britt-Marie finds herself having to coach a youth soccer team in her hometown of Borg, Sweden.  She has no experience in coaching and no knowledge of soccer, either.  Making things even more difficult is that the team is the pride and joy of Borg.  The result is a story that is both a journey of self-discovery for Britt-Marie and a familiar fish out of water tale in one.

Award Winner Pernilla August (Star Wars Episode I and II, the Best Intentions) stars in the movie’s lead role.

American audiences will be able to take in the movie thanks to English subtitles included in the Swedish-language movie.  the movie will retail for MSRP of $19.99 (DVD) and $25.99.

More information on this 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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Ice Nine Kills Unleashes ‘Merry Axe-Mas’ Video Game; Band To Continue Tour In 2020

Courtesy: Fearless Records

Ice Nine Kills is celebrating the holidays by giving its fans a very special gift.

The band has made available, the video game from the video for its single ‘Merry Axe-Mas.’  The band debuted the sing’es video Dec. 21, 2018. The single is taken from the band’s 2018 album The Silver Scream and is also featured on the album’s recent re-issue, subtitled The Final Cut.

The video game features three levels — Santa’s Forgiveness, Santa’s Forest and Silence The Sinners — through which Santa Claus wreaks some serious holiday havoc.  The video game and the song and video are all inspired by the controversial 1984 slasher flick Silent Night, Deadly Night, which is a favorite of INK front man Spencer Charnas.

Ice Nine Kills spent much of this year touring in support of its latest release The Silver Scream and its re-issue on the “Silver Scream World Tour” and “The Octane Accelerator Tour,” which was presented by Sirius XM.  The majority of the shows on that latter tour were sold out.

The band will continue its support of The Silver Scream well into the new year with a string of European dates in February and March.  That run will give way to another North American run that is scheduled to launch April 8 in Sunrise, FL and to run through May 20 in St. Paul, MN.  From there, the band will make its way to the United Kingdom for a brief stint there in late May.

Papa Roach, Five Finger Death Punch, I Prevail and Hollywood Undead will join the band on several dates.  The bands’ current tour schedule is noted below.  Tickets are available here.

DATE
CITY
VENUE
Sat
2/1 – 2/6
New Orleans, LA
Shiprocked Cruise
Sun
2/16
Barcelona, ES
Razzmatazz *
Thu
2/20
Milan, IT
Alcatraz *
Fri
2/21
Zurich, CH
Halle 62 *
Sat
2/22
Offenbach, DE
Stadhalle *
Mon
2/24
Munich, DE
Zenith *
Tue
2/25
Wien, AT
Gasometer *
Fri
2/28
Thessaloniki, GR
Princpal Club Theatre *
Sat
2/1
Athens, GR
Piraeus Academy 117 *
Mon
3/2
Sofia, BG
Universiada Hall *
Tue
3/3
Bucharest, RO
Arenele Romane *
Wed
3/4
Budapest, HU
Papp Laszlo Budpaest Sportarena *
Fri
3/6
Bratislava Iii, SL
Eurovia Arena *
Sat
3/7
Poznan, PL
MTP2 *
Mon
3/9
Berlin, DE
Verti Music Hall *
Tue
3/10
Hannover, DE
Swiss Life Hall *
Wed
3/11
Leizpig, DE
Haus Auensse *
Fri
3/13
Paris, FR
La Villette *
Sat
3/14
Tilburg, NL
013 Poppodium *
Mon
3/16
Dusseldorf, DE
Mitsubushi Electric Halle *
Tue
3/17
Hamburg, DE
Barclaycard Arena *
Wed
3/18
Copenhagen, DK
Vega *
Wed
4/8
Sunrise, FL
BB&T Center &
Fri
4/10
Duluth, GA
Infinite Energy Center &
Sat
4/11
Pelham, AL
Oak Mountain Amphitheater &
Mon
4/13
San Antonio, TX
AT&T Center &
Tue
4/14
Ft. Worth, TX
Dickies Arena &
Thu
4/16
Houston, TX
Toyota Center &
Sat
4/18
Phoenix, AZ
Talking Stick Resort Arena &
Sun
4/19
San Diego, CA
Viejas Arena &
Tue
4/21
Los Angeles, CA
The Forum &
Thu
4/23
Tacoma, WA
Tacoma Dome &
Sat
4/25
Portland, OR
Veteran Memorial Coliseum &
Mon
4/27
Morrison, CO
Red Rocks Amphitheatre &
Wed
4/29
Kansas City, MO
Sprint Center &
Fri
5/1
Concord, SC
Epicenter Festival
Sun
5/3
Baltimore, MD
Royal Farms Arena &
Tue
5/5
Worcester, MA
DCU Center &
Wed
5/6
Newark, NJ
Prudential Center &
Fri
5/8
Cincinnati, OH
Heritage Bank Center &
Tue
5/12
Detroit, MI
Little Ceasars Arena &
Thu
5/14
Pittsburgh, PA
PPG Paints Center &
Fri
5/15
Camden, NJ
BB&T Pavilion &
Sat
5/16
Columbus, OH
Sonic Temple Festival
Sun
5/17
Nashville, TN
Bridgestone Arena &
Tue
5/19
Rosemont, IL
Allstate Arena &
Wed
5/20
St. Paul, MN
Xcel Energy Center &
Sat
5/23-24
Leeds/Hatfield, UK
SlamDunk Festival
Wed
5/27
Kyiv, UA
Bel etage Concert Club
Fri
5/29
Sankt-Peterburg, RU
Kosmonavt
* with Papa Roach and Hollywood Undead
& with Five Finger Death Punch, Papa Roach and I Prevail
Along with ‘Merry Axe-Mas,’ The Silver Scream has also produced the singles ‘Thank God It’s Friday,’ ‘Stabbing in the Dark,’ ‘A Grave Mistake‘ and ‘The American Nightmare,’ ‘Savages,’ and ‘Enjoy Your Slay‘.  The album’s recent re-issue saw the release of an acoustic take of ‘A Grave Mistake,’ ‘Thank God It’s Friday,’ and ‘Stabbing in the Dark‘ as well as a cover of Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller.’

The full track listing for the new re-issue of The Silver Scream is noted below.

THE SILVER SCREAM: FINAL CUT album will include the following track listing:
1. The American Nightmare
2. Thank God It’s Friday
3. Stabbing In The Dark
4. Savages
5. The Jig Is Up (ft. Randy Strohmeyer of Finch)
6. A Grave Mistake
7. Rocking The Boat (ft. Jeremy Schwartz)
8. Enjoy Your Slay (ft. Sam Kubrick)
9. Freak Flag
10. The World in My Hands (ft. Tony Lovato of Mest)
11. Merry Axe-mas
12. Love Bites (ft. Chelsea Talmadge, Stranger Things)
13. IT Is The End (ft. JR Wasilewski & Buddy Schaub of Less Than Jake and Will Salazar of Fenix TX)
14. Your Number’s Up
15. Thriller (Michael Jackson cover)
16. A Grave Mistake (Live from SiriusXM)
17. Stabbing In The Dark (Acoustic ft. Matt Heafy)
18. SAVAGES (Acoustic)
19. Thank God It’s Friday (Acoustic ft. Ari Lehman)

More information on Ice Nine Kills’ new video game, tour dates and more is available online at:

 

Website: http://iceninekills.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/iceninekills

 

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

Disney Announces ‘Maleficent: Mistress Of Evil’ Release Date, Specs

Courtesy: Walt Disney Studios

Walt Disney Studios’ MaleficentMistress of Evil next month.

The follow-up to the studio’s 2014 movie Maleficent, it is scheduled for release on Jan. 14.  It will be available online Dec. 31.

This time, Maleficent and her Goddaughter Aurora find themselves navigating difficult family waters as Aurora is set to marry Prince Phillip.  After years of growing together, the pair’s relationship starts to strain.  Making things even more difficult is the ongoing strain between humans and fairies.

Courtesy: Walt Disney Studios

The upcoming home release of MaleficentMistress of Evil features a variety of bonuses, such as behind the scenes interviews with the cast and crew, visual effects profile and extended scenes.  The full list of bonus features is noted below.

DIGITAL EXCLUSIVE:
  • Lickspittle – Fantasy-film veteran Warwick Davis considers how every aspect of the film’s design inspired his tragic character.
BLU-RAY & DIGITAL BONUS:
  • Extended Scenes
    • The Queen Comforts Aurora – Queen Ingrith takes advantage of Aurora’s fragile state to gain her confidence and accelerate the wedding plans.
    • Philip and Aurora Dance – Aurora struggles to gain Queen Ingrith’s approval when she realizes how she is viewed among aristocracy.
  • Featurettes
    • Origins of the Fey – Angelina Jolie discusses Maleficent’s lore, her newly discovered origins, and the diversity of the cast who portray the Fey.
    • Aurora’s Wedding – Elle Fanning gushes over Aurora’s fairytale wedding; plus, hear from some special guests as they give their best to the bride and groom.
    • If You Had Wings – Get a glimpse of the elaborate visual effects that allow the Fey to take to the skies.
    • “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” VFX Reel – Discover how a perfect blend of practical and visual effects were used to create the stunning landscapes in “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil.”
  • Outtakes – Uncooperative cats, a serious case of the giggles and even the “floss dance” found their way into Ulstead.
  • “You Can’t Stop The Girl” – Music video performed by Bebe Rexha

More information on MaleficentMistress of Evil is available online now at:

 

Website: http://movies.disney.com/maleficent-mistress-of-evil

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/Maleficent

 

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Arrow Video’s ‘Robocop’ Director’s Cut Re-issue Adds Greatly To The Movie’s Legacy

Courtesy: Arrow Video

Fans of Orion Pictures’ classic science fiction action flick Robocop will get a special treat early next year with the release of the Director’s Cut of the movie on Blu-ray.  Scheduled for release on Feb. 11 through Arrow Video, this latest re-issue of the 1987 classic is a presentation that will appeal to the movie’s most devoted audiences.  That is due in large part to the bonus content featured this time out.  It will be addressed shortly.  The general presentation of the movie adds to that appeal and will be addressed a little later.  The movie’s average price point is money well spent by the noted audiences.  It will be addressed later, too.  Each item noted is crucial in its own way to the whole of Robocop: Director’s Cut.  All things considered, they make this latest presentation of Robocop a must have for the noted audiences.

Arrow Video’s forthcoming Blu-ray re-issue of Robocop is the best treatment of the classic sci-fi action flick to have seen the light of day so far.  It is a presentation that will appeal easily to the movie’s most devoted audiences.  That is due in no small part to the re-issue’s collective bonus content.  Featured in this release are a series of new bonuses focused on the movie’s soundtrack, its creation, the preservation of its props and its cinematography (and other new bonuses) along with archived extras, such as an Easter egg presentation about Director Paul Verhoeven’s appearance in the movie, deleted scenes and more.  The new bonus features give audiences much to appreciate in their own right.  Audiences learn in the new bonus “Creating Robocop” a lot of new information.  One of the most intriguing tidbits that audiences learn through this feature, which finds the movie’s co-writer Michael Miner discussing the movie’s creation, is that the movie originally received an “X” rating from the MPAA.  That was largely because of the excessive blood, gore and violence.  Miner explains that he and the movie’s other creative heads had to make a lot of changes just to get the movie down to an “R” rating.  That would explain the reasoning for presenting this Director’s Cut.  It gives audiences Robocop in its original, unedited format.  Miner also discusses during his feature, the plot elements incorporated into the script, such as predatory capitalism, workers’ unions and the sociological aspect of the story.  As if that is not enough, he also reveals that if not for director Paul Verhoeven’s wife, the movie might never have even become a reality.  That will be left for audiences to discover for themselves.

The discussion on the movie’s soundtrack, another new addition to this release, finds a variety of figures discussing the attention that composer Basil Poledouris gave to the movie’s soundtrack.  Audiences learn that Poledouris went to painstaking efforts to make sure that the movie’s orchestral composition worked not just as an extra to the story, but as part of the story. It is explained that he made sure the music would rise and fall precisely with the story’s action right down to the second.  The respect shown to Poledouris for his work on the movie’s soundtrack, coupled with the explanations of the time and effort put in to the soundtrack’s creation gives audiences a whole new appreciation for this aspect of the movie.

The discussion by Robocop “super-fan” Julien Dumont on his reasoning for collection adds its own share of interest in that it is not just another profile of a movie’s super-fan.  Dumont points out in his interview that he collected the props not just from Robocop, but its sequels, too, and that he collected them not for himself, but to preserve the legacy of those who took part in the trilogy’s creation.  He even points out that some of the items he has collected reside today, in a cinema museum in France for everyone to see.  That is proof positive that he is not just a super-fan.  Rather, it shows that he is a super-fan who wants to share his love of the Robocop trilogy with everyone.  That shows a real love and respect for the work put in by those responsible for the creation of Robocop and its sequels.  He even has the script from Robocop, and points out the final scene that is presented in the final product is not the original ending.  The original ending is actually featured as one of the deleted scenes, which are also featured in this release.

The original final scene of Robocop actually finds Murphy’s partner, Officer Lewis, recovering from her wounds in a hospital bed, being interviewed by the press.  That scene cuts to the news anchors who are used throughout the movie, offering support to law enforcement.  It’s just one of the deleted scenes featured with the movie’s re-issue.  It adds a new touch to the movie’s presentation.  When the deleted scenes, which are previously released, are coupled with the rest of the movie’s new and archived extras, the whole of the bonus content makes this re-issue more than worth the money paid for the presentation.  That item – the re-issue’s price point – will be addressed later.  Before touching on that item, the actual presentation in the Director’s Cut of Robocop will be addressed.

As noted previously, audiences learn through one of the new bonus features included with the re-issue, Robocop actually received an “X” rating because of its blood and gore.  One of the deleted scenes shows there was actually some female nudity, too.  One scene was one of the media breaks, this time featuring two topless women making pizza in an advertisement, and the host even taking advantage of both women.  That scene obviously is not in the final cut, but the blood and gore incorporated into the original cut is here, complete with Murphy’s hand being shot off, a bullet being shot through his head in the “torture killing” scene.  There is also a scene with one person being run over and killed late in the movie, as well as lots more blood, gore and violence.  Simply put, the presentation of Robocop that audiences get here is the original vision for the movie.  That means audiences get in this cut, Robocop as it was originally meant to be seen, explicit content and all.  Keeping that in mind along with the expansive bonus content featured with the re-issue, the collection of all that content gives audiences that much more to appreciate.

The collective primary and secondary content featured in the forthcoming Director’s Cut of Robocop goes a long way toward making this latest re-issue of Robocop a positive addition to the home library of any of the movie’s fans.  Keeping in mind how much content the Director’s Cut of the movie offers the noted audiences, it makes the presentation’s average price point relatively affordable.

The average price point of Robocop: Director’s Cut is $31.75.  That price was obtained by averaging prices listed at Amazon, Walmart, Target, Best Buy and Books-A-Million.  It was not listed at Barnes & Noble Booksellers at the time of this review’s posting.  The least expensive of the listings — $26.42 – was at Amazon and Walmart while the most expensive listing was at Books-A-Million.  That retailer’s price listing for the product was $49.95. Best Buy and Target each listed the movie’s Director’s Cut at $27.99.  While Best Buy and Target might not have had the lowest of the price listing, they still came in below the average price range.  Books-A-Million’s price listing proved to be the only listing the topped that number.  To that end, separate listings of less than $30 and an average listing of just over $30 is still relatively affordable and money well spent by those who are true devotees of Robocop.  Keeping this in mind, the average price point of Robocop: Director’s Cut proves to be its own positive within the bigger picture of the re-issue’s presentation.  To that end, that price point and content come together to make the whole of this re-issue a positive for any longtime fan of Robocop.

Arrow Video’s forthcoming Director’s Cut reissue of Robocop is a presentation that succeeds greatly in its effort to entertain the most devoted fans of this classic action flick.  That is due in large part to the bonus content featured with the movie.  Between the new content and the archived interviews and other items, the expansive bonus content offers audiences much to appreciate.  The content is also available on the standard Blu-ray re-issue that was released Nov. 26, also through Arrow Video.  The full, unedited cut of the movie, which is far more explicit in its content than the theatrical version adds to the appeal for the noted audiences.  That collective primary and secondary content comes together to make the movie’s average price point, which is in itself affordable, that much more appealing to audiences.  Each item noted here is important to the whole of Robocop: Director’s Cut.  All things considered, they make the movie’s presentation a strong new offering from Arrow Video that will certainly appeal to plenty of Robocop fans.  Robocop: Director’s Cut is scheduled for release on Feb. 11, 2020 through Arrow Video.  More information on this and other titles from Arrow Video is available online now at:

 

 

 

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