MVD Visual’s New ‘Back To The Future’ Doc Is Worth Seeing “Time” And Again

Courtesy: MVD Visual/MVD Entertainment Group

Courtesy: MVD Visual/MVD Entertainment Group

Thirty-one years ago this year, Universal Pictures released a movie that since its release has gone on to become a cultural phenomenon.  That movie goes by the titled of Back to the Future.  It is a movie that has led countless masses to dress up like their favorite time traveling characters at conventions around the country.  It has led to an animated series and any number of documentaries, too.  The latest of those documentaries, OUTATIME: Saving The DeLorean Time Machine was released this past July.  This coming Tuesday, Sept. 13, another documentary centered on the now “timeless” (bad pun completely intended there) will be released MVD Visual that branches out on the movie’s significance even more in the form of the simply titled Back in Time.  The ninety-five minute documentary, while another independent release, is another piece that cinephiles and Back to the Future fans alike will appreciate.  That is due in part to the documentary’s story.  That will be discussed shortly.  The manner in which the story is told is just as important to note in the program’s presentation.  Last of note in the doc’s presentation is its pacing.  Each element is important in its own right to the documentary’s presentation.  Altogether they make Back in Time another Back to the Future feature that, again, cinephiles and Back to the Future fans alike will want to see “time” and again.

MVD Visual’s new Back to the Future retrospective Back in Time is hardly the first documentary centered on Universal Pictures’ “timeless” movie.  Regardless it still proves over the course of its ninety-five minute run time that it is another presentation that both cinephiles and Back to the Future fans alike will appreciate.  That is due in no small part to the program’s story.  The story presents the role that Back to The Future has had, and continues to have, now thirty-plus years after it made its big screen debut.  It tells that story through interviews with the movie’s cast and crew—including Lea Thompson, Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Donald Fullilove, Claudia Wells, Steven Spielberg, and even Robert Zemeckis—and interviews with a small handful of the movie’s fans among others.  Viewers learn through the interviews some very interesting facts and stories connected to the movie.  One of the most interesting revelations made in the interviews comes from Bob Gale.  Gale, who was one of the creative forces behind Back to the Future reveals that the movie was shopped around to every one of Hollywood’s major studios but none would take it.  He said it was even shopped to Disney because that had been recommended by those other studios.  Gale reveals in his interview that when the movie was presented to them, executives with the studio refused to touch it because they thought the topic of Marty’s mom falling for him in the past hinted at incest.  This is funny to note because Gale said no other studios had even begun to take that angle in reviewing the movie’s script.

Another interesting revelation comes from an interview with Michael J. Fox.  Fox recollects in said interview that none other than Princess Diana actually sat next to him at the movie’s premiere.  He reveals in his interview that he didn’t know she would be sitting next to him and because of certain protocol about being around her, he couldn’t even use the bathroom, so when he started feeling nature call, he couldn’t even respond to its call.  Throughout that anecdote, audiences can’t help but laugh along with Fox as he recalls that silly story.  In the same moment, Fox also recalls Princess Diana’s reaction to one scene in particular in comparison to her reaction to other moments.  That is worth its own share of laughs, too.  It is just one more of the interesting tidbits that make the documentary’s story so interesting.

There is also an outright statement from Robert Zemeckis himself at one point that he has zero intention of making a fourth Back to The Future movie.  Considering the way that most of Hollywood’s “Big Six” studios are taking right now, one can only hope that he will hold true to that even today and that no one else will ever try to make another movie.  Keeping in mind all of the revelations noted here and all of the other interesting and intriguing information shared throughout the program, it becomes clear why the story at the center of Back in Time is so important to its presentation.  Even with its clear importance to the doc’s presentation the story is just one of the program’s key elements.  The manner in which the story is told is just as important to note as the story itself.

The story at the center of Back in Time is clearly an important element in the program’s presentation if not the program’s most important element.  That means that even potentially being the program’s most important element, it is not the program’s only important element.  As important as the story is, the manner in which the story is told is just as important to note as the story itself.  The story is told through two clearly separated segments, which span the course of the doc’s ninety-five minutes.  The first segment focuses on the movie and its significance through the eyes of the cast and crew.  It should be noted specifically here the focus is strictly on Back to The Future, not the two sequels that followed or even the short-lived animated series that it spun off in the early 90s on CBS.  Though there is an indirect connection to the work done by the restoration team in OUTATIME: Saving The DeLorean Time Machine in this segment.  Two members of the build team are interviewed about the work put in to restore the trilogy’s “A” car with footage from that do directly incorporated into this segment.  The program’s second segment examines the significance of Back to The Future through the eyes of some of the movie’s devotees.  The fans in question are not just your average fans either.  One of the fans in question owns the actual VW bus that was used in Back to The Future as well as the truck that Marty won in the movie, as well as other memorabilia.  Another fan has one of the DeLorean replicas incorporated into his own nine-hole mini-golf course at his home.  He uses the car, and the golf course, to raise money for good causes every year.  In another case, viewers are introduced to a young pair of fans who ended up getting married at a Back to The Future convention.  It just so happened that Christopher Lloyd was in attendance as the young man popped the question to his bride to be.  He wasn’t the only one who was there, either.  Harry Waters, Jr., who played Chuck Berry’s cousin Berry (from the movie’s high school dance segment), was also there and sang to the couple after the young lady said yes.  It is a moment that will put a smile on any viewer’s face.  Through it all, the documentary does a laudable job of balancing each segment with the other.  The end result is a story that, thanks to that solid division, will keep viewers completely engaged and entertained.  Of course the segments’ division and the story together are not the only factors that will keep audiences engaged in this presentation.  The program’s pacing is important in its own right, too.

The story at the center of Back in Time and the general manner in which the story is told are both key to the doc’s presentation.  That is because both elements work together expertly to keep viewers completely engaged and entertained from the story’s beginning to its end.  While both elements are clearly important both in themselves and jointly, they are not the program’s only important elements.  The program’s pacing is just as important to note as the story and how it is told.  The program’s pacing is so important because without proper pacing there would be no reason to sit through either of the program’s two segments.  Thankfully the program’s pacing is relatively solid from beginning to end.  The topics that are discussed within each segment are many.  But they do not move so fast that audiences will feel left behind nor do those behind the lens allow the program to lag at any point within any discussion either.  That being the case, the documentary’s pacing joins with its story and its segmentation to make the program in whole one that will keep audiences completely engaged and entertained.  In turn audiences will come out of the program agreeing that while it is not the only Back to the Future to ever be released, it is one that cinephiles and Back to The Future fans alike will enjoy watching “time” and again.

Back in Time is not the only Back to the Future documentary to ever be released.  But in considering all that went into assembling the program it is safe to say that it is another enjoyable piece centered on the landmark movie.  Its story explains not just the significance of the DeLorean (as in OUTATIME: Saving the DeLorean Time Machine) but the cultural significance of the movie in whole.  That is examined through interviews with both fans and with the movie’s cast and crew.  The division of the story into two distinct segments adds to the enjoyment of the program’s presentation.  The pacing of each segment rounds out the doc’s most important elements.  It should be clear in reading this analysis why each element is so important to the program’s presentation.  All things considered, it is clear that the documentary is, in whole, another retrospective centered on Universal’s iconic movie that cinephiles and Back to The Future fans alike will appreciate.  Back in Time will be available in stores and online this coming Tuesday, Sept. 12.  It can be ordered online direct via MVD Entertainment Group’s online store at http://mvdb2b.com/s/BackInTime/MVD8722D.  More information on Back in Time and other titles from MVD Entertainment Group/MVD Visual is available online now at:

 

 

 

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Virgil Films’ New ‘Back To The Future’ Doc Is A “Heavy” Presentation

Courtesy: Virgil Films

Courtesy: Virgil Films

Throughout the course of its rich, ages-long history Hollywood and its major studios have carved out so many new cinematic highways on which audiences have traveled.  It is on those same roads that audiences have been introduced to just as many iconic cars and more.  In 1964 audiences were introduced to James Bond’s now famed Aston Martin for the first time.  Four years later in 1968 audiences were introduced to yet another iconic car in the form of the Ford Bullitt Mustang GT 390 Fastback.  And in 1985 audiences went for another ride with one of the single most iconic cinematic cars of all time in the form of Doctor Emmett L. Brown’s DeLorean time machine.  That car is the focus of today’s review.  Or rather, a new documentary focused on the car in question is the focus of today’s review.  Just last week Virgil Films released a new documentary title OUTATIME:  Saving The DeLorean Time Machine.  The roughly 63 minute documentary follows the efforts of a dedicated team of fans who made it their mission to reconstruct the car, which for years had sadly been left to the elements by the very studio that made it famous.  That story in question sits at the center of the documentary as its most important elements.  The transitions that are used to advance the story are just as important to note as the documentary’s central story.  The bonus material that is included in the documentary rounds out its most important elements.  It brings everything full circle in the program’s presentation.  Each element plays its own unquestionably important part in the program’s presentation.  Altogether they make OUTATIME: Saving The DeLorean Time Machine a must see not just for Back to the Future fans but for car nuts and film buffs, too.  They come together to make the program in whole potentially one of the year’s top new documentaries.

Virgil Films’ new cinematic documentary OUTATIME: Saving The DeLorean Time Machine is potentially one of 2016’s top new documentaries.  It is a must see not just for Back to the Future fans but for car nuts and film buffs, too.  That is exhibited in large part through the story that makes up the body of the program’s main feature.  The story follows a group of dedicated Back to the Future fans who make it their mission to bring back to life the famed DeLorean time machine used in the filming of the beloved film series (and apparently its animated spinoff, too as audiences will learn in watching this documentary).  As the story goes, the car in question was Universal’s “A” car.  It was one of three that were used in the filming of the original trilogy and is the only one of the three cars that survived the filming.  The problem is that the car was largely neglected in the years following the trilogy’s filming.  If it wasn’t being used at special events and around the Universal back lot, it was being left open to the elements and overzealous fans, many of whom picked pieces of the car and took them home for themselves.  So, as the story presents, it was up to these dedicated fans to reconstruct the car to its original, pristine condition.  It was anything but an easy chore, too.  It took the team a whole year to find get the job done.  From looking through military surplus yards to contacting fans who had taken pieces of the original car (including the original flux capacitor) to even building parts from scratch and more the reconstruction team had quite the job in store.  Lead man Joe Walser made certain, too that the car was rebuilt right down to the smallest detail.  Perhaps most incredible of all is that not a single member of the team was paid for its efforts.  One man drove three hours either way from beginning to end while another even flew 7 hours at one point and was instantly put right to work upon arrival.  The end result of the team’s efforts is incredible to see.  Interestingly enough had Universal taken more care of the DeLorean, this documentary might have ironically never happened.  But now thanks to the efforts of the build team, it does exist.  Not only that but the DeLorean now sits in one of the world’s most renowned automotive museums for all to see after being moved from Universal Studios.  This is revealed in one of the program’s key bonus features, and will be discussed later.  Getting back on the subject at hand, the story at the center of OUTATIME: Saving the DeLorean Time Machine is a key element to the documentary’s presentation.  It is only one of the program’s key elements.  The transitions that are used in telling the story, and advancing it, are just as important to the program as its story.

The story at the center of OUTATIME: Saving the DeLorean Time Machine is a key element in the program’s presentation.  It is just one of the documentary’s key elements.  The transitions that are used to help tell the story and advance it are just as important to its overall presentation as the story itself.  Viewers will be pleased to see just how smooth the transitions in question are.  Each segment is launched by the use of yet another iconic BTTF element, the clock from the clock tower.  As each month ticks by so does the clock tick back to zero.  Within each segment viewers are presented with a specific portion of the rebuild–the time circuits, reacquiring the pieces that had been picked from the car, the hunt to find other parts, etc.  The beginning and end of each segment is wholly clear, making the story in whole that much easier to follow.  That in turn leads to insurance of viewers’ engagement from the beginning of the program to its end.  It works with the story directly to make the presentation of the program’s central story key in itself to the documentary’s overall presentation.  It still is not the last of the documentary’s most notable elements.  Its bonus material is just as important to note as its story and transitions therein.

The story at the center of OUTATIME: Saving the DeLorean Time Machine and its related transitions are both key pieces of this documentary’s presentation.  The story centers on the efforts to restore what is one of the most iconic cars in Hollywood’s modern history.  The transitions ensure viewers’ engagement from beginning to end.  While both elements prove to be undeniably important to the documentary’s overall presentation they are not its only important elements.  The bonus material that comes with the documentary is just as important as the story and its elements.  That is because the bonus material collectively brings the whole presentation full circle beginning with the “Petersen Automotive Museum” featurette.  This bonus features Joe Walser and a representative from the Petersen Automotive Museum discussing the addition of the DeLorean time machine to the museum’s collection.  Walser is so ecstatic as he discusses the car’s move from Universal Studios post reconstruction to the Petersen Museum.  He notes that he could not have been happier because unlike its time at Universal Studios, it is not encased in a giant box.  It is on display for everybody to see.  And as the museum’s rep notes, it is presented so that people can walk almost all the way around it as they admire it.  But it is also monitored very closely so as to prevent anyone from touching it, again bringing the story full circle since people originally taking parts from the car was part of what led to its near demise.  Speaking of the car’s parts the documentary also features a short piece discussing the names for the various parts that make up Doc Brown’s famed time machine and how said names came to be.  Walser and another member of the team note that many of the car’s parts were named by other BTTF fans, not by the people behind the cameras.  As a result of that dedication to the car and the franchise that made the car so famous, the names for the parts have, in turn, stuck to this day.  On a similar note, there is also a feature on sci-fi archivist Bob Burns and how his dedication to archiving and maintaining props and other pieces from Hollywood’s history served as the inspiration for Walser and others.  It is eye-opening to see Burns’ vast collection and the state in which the props remain today.  It is a compliment to Burns’ efforts to say the very least.  As if that isn’t enough there is also an extensive collection of deleted scenes that adds its own share of enjoyment to the program.  The bonus feature-length commentary adds just as much entertainment and insight to the documentary if not more than the other noted bonus features.  That aside, audiences will agree that each bonus plays its own part in the whole of the program’s presentation.  Altogether they prove to be just as important to the documentary as its story and the story’s related transitions.  All things considered they make OUUTATIME: Saving the DeLorean Time Machine a must see for any Back To the Future fan as well as any car nut and cinema history buff.  It is the kind of program that would be a good fit on History Channel and even Velocity network because of that reach and the networks’ similar programming.  Considering all of this, the documentary proves to be such a solid work that it is potentially one of 2016’s top new documentaries.

OUTATIME: Saving the DeLorean Time Machine is potentially one of 2016s top new documentaries.  That is due in large part to its original story and the transitions therein that ensure viewers’ engagement from beginning to end.  The story makes it a good fit not just on Blu-ray but also alongside programming offered on History Channel and even Velocity network.  The bonus material that is included with the program’s home release makes the documentary even more worth the watch.  That is because it brings the program full circle with its presented material.  Each element plays its own important part to the program, as has already been noted.  When they are set against one another, they show this documentary to be one that every car nut, cinematic history buff, and Back to the Future fan alike will appreciate.  Considering that reach and overall enjoyment, the documentary in whole proves to be potentially one of 2016’s top new documentaries.  It is available now in store and online.  More information on this and other titles from Virgil Films is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.virgilfilmsent.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/virgilfilms

 

 

 

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Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me Is A Moving Tribute To One Of Music’s Greats

Courtesy: Virgil Films

Courtesy: Virgil Films

Four years ago country music legend Glen Campbell made one of the most difficult announcements of his career if not the single most difficult. The announcement in question was that he had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease. Those that know someone with Alzheimer’s or that have known someone with Alzheimer’s know the emotional pain that comes with such an announcement. Knowing that there is no cure for the disease, Campbell decided that he would not go quietly into that good night. Rather, he wanted to go out with a bang before the disease took control of his mind. He went on from there to release one final album and embark on a farewell tour to thank his fans for their years of support. Now thanks to Virgil Films Campbell’s fans can relive that final tour and everything that came with it in the form of the tour documentary Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me. The main reason that this is such a standout documentary is that it isn’t presented like every other tour documentary out there. Rather it is presented more as a tribute to the life and legacy of one of the music industry’s titans. That is just one reason that audiences will find it so compelling. The interviews with Campbell’s counterparts throughout the entertainment industry make the documentary even more intriguing. It isn’t just because his counterparts come from so many different realms of the industry either. The surprising reveal of each celebrity interviewee’s link to Campbell makes the program in whole even more powerful. The final reason that viewers and fans alike will find this presentation so touching and powerful is its editing. The editing is spotless from beginning to end, making for an emotional impact that will move even the strongest person emotionally speaking. It is thanks to the work of those that edited the documentary and prepared it for its release that the interviews and collective footage presented here is so powerful. It brings everything full circle and proves famed Chicago Sun Times writer/critic Richard Roeper completely right in his sentiment that Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me is “one of the most remarkable documentaries in recent years” and that “You do not want to miss this movie.”

Every year, there is any number of new music documentaries distributed to stores and online outlets for viewers to choose from. The problem is that most of those documentaries are little more than space fillers used as to hold fans and fulfill contractual obligations with record labels. Luckily though, for all of those poorly put together pieces, there are the occasional diamonds in the rough that manage to somehow shine through. Virgil Films’ new documentary Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me is one of those diamonds in the rough. This presentation is not just another run of the mill tour documentary. It is a tour documentary. But it is more than that. It is a tribute to the life and legacy of one of the music industry’s titans. That is the central reason for its success. While it does follow Campbell on his final nationwide tour, it offers audiences more than just a presentation following Campbell on said tour. It also follows Campbell off of the road. Viewers get to follow Campbell and his wife as they check in with the doctor to find out how much the disease has progressed. They also get to follow Campbell as he tries to face the reality of his diagnosis within his daily life. What audiences get here is the picture of a brave man; a man who refuses to just give up and give in. Rather, as viewers will see, he chooses to face it head on with a smile and all of the laughs and love that he can give. This includes some of the most difficult times as the disease progresses. The end result of the presentation will have viewers (including even the strongest viewers) both laughing and crying throughout. By the program’s end, viewers will agree that Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me is not just another tour documentary. It is a powerful, moving tribute to a legend that will potentially inspire others with family and friends suffering from that terrible disease.

The overall presentation of Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me makes the documentary stand out head and shoulders above every other music documentary that has been released so far this year. That is because it isn’t just a run of the mill tour documentary churned out to satisfy some label’s contractual obligations. It is a tribute to the life and legacy of a great talent. It’s just one reason that this presentation is such a memorable and moving work. The interviews with Campbell’s family, friends, and counterparts across the entertainment industry make the documentary even more powerful. The interviews in question are with Campbell’s family, friends, and counterparts throughout the entertainment industry. Those counterparts include well-known figures from the country music world such as Brad Paisley, Vince Gill, and Keith Urban as well as some of the rock world’s biggest names including: Bruce Springsteen, Chad Smith, and The Edge among others. Even former President Bill Clinton gets some face time along with famed actor/comedian Steve Martin and other well-known figures from the realms of television and movies. The list of people interviewed throughout the program is within itself plenty of reason to watch the documentary. But it is what the interviewees have to say of Campbell that makes each individual’s discussion so important to the whole of the documentary. Every one of the feature’s interviewees speaks with such reverence for him. They also speak with an increasingly noticeable emotion. The reason for that emotion is revealed in the program’s final minutes. Not to ruin it for anyone but it is revealed that the individuals interviewed for the documentary each had a connection to somebody that was either suffering from Alzheimer’s or that had suffered. So it makes sense that they would each get somewhat choked up in discussing the topic as it related to Campbell. It just brought up memories of their own friends and families. It is that heartfelt emotion displayed by each of the interviewees that really makes each separate segment so powerful. In turn, each of the segments combined makes the presentation in whole that much more moving for viewers.

The interviews collected for Virgil Films’ new Glen Campbell documentary are extremely moving to say the very least. They are so moving not because they feature some of the biggest names from the entertainment world and that of politics, but because of the heartfelt sentiment shared by each individual in discussion what Glen Campbell means to them and how his condition relates to them personally. They, along with everything else presented in this documentary, paint a picture that every person should see regardless of their familiarity with Glen Campbell the man and the musician. Of course without the work of those charged with editing and assembling the presentation ahead of its release, none of that would matter. It is the work of those individuals that rounds out the reasons that audiences will so appreciate this work. Their efforts present Campbell as a strong yet still fragile individual. The footage of Campbell in his childhood set against that of him as an adult, raising his family adds even more of an emotional impact to the overall presentation. Seeing Campbell slowly begin to struggle through his tour yet still fight through it and put on the best show that he can ups that emotional impact even more. Add in the expert balance of each element from beginning to end and viewers will find themselves not wanting to turn off the movie. Like a really good book or any other really good movie, the work of the editors makes this presentation’s near two-hour run time pass by with ease. Viewers won’t realize at all just how much time has passed by the time the movie has ended. They will also find themselves moved possibly deeper than they ever had by any fictional feature released in recent memory. In coming to such realization, audiences will agree that those charged with editing this documentary have succeeded to the highest degree in their jobs and have in turn helped craft what is one of the best music documentaries to be released in many years; a documentary that every viewer should see regardless of their familiarity with Campbell’s body of work.

Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me is one of the best music/tour documentaries to be released in recent memory. The work of the movie’s editors coupled with its interviews and the overall approach to the presentation make it a presentation that every viewer should see regardless of their familiarity with Campbell’s body of work. It is available now in stores and online and can be ordered direct from Virgil Films’ online store at http://www.virgilfilmsent.com/store/product.php?pid=716. More information on this and other titles from Virgil Films is available online now at:

Website: http://www.virgilfilmsent.com

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

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Pandas: The Journey Home Is A Journey That Every Animal Lover And Documentary Fan Will Want To Take

Courtesy:  National Geographic Films/Virgil Films

Courtesy: National Geographic Films/Virgil Films

There was big news from the animal world recently as a giant panda named Kelin became a mother for the first time. The seven-year old panda, who had been artificially inseminated, gave birth to twin female cubs at a breeding center in Chengdu, in Southwest China. The news is so big because of the rarity of twin panda births. With the happy news being announced this week it would seem a fitting time to take a look at the newly released panda-centric documentary Pandas: The Journey Home. The documentary, which was recently released by National Geographic and Virgil Films, examines the efforts of workers at China’s Wolong Panda Center to raise and protect pandas. The program boasts a number of positives; positives that collectively show it to be both an invaluable tool for teachers and an enjoyable watch for even the most casual nature lover. The main way in which it shows this is through its central presentation. It doesn’t try to be just another wildlife program nor is it just another run-of-the-mill activist piece either. Rather it is a hybrid of both genres. The end result of that mix is a presentation that will move viewers both to laugh and cry. That sounds like a line right out of a movie promotion, yes. But in the case of this program, it is actually a fitting description. On a related note, the program’s cinematography is just as stunning. Audiences will see the pandas as they are raised in the mountains of China’s Sichuan Province. The footage that was captured and presented here is within itself plenty of reason for audiences to check out this documentary. Last but hardly least of note here is the program’s collective run time and pacing. It runs roughly forty minutes total. That is not very long. None of that time is wasted. Nor does it leave viewers feeling left behind and confused at any point. The resultant effect is that audiences will be better able to appreciate the program’s camerawork and the information shared throughout its run time. The end result of all of this is the realization that Pandas: The Journey Home is a documentary that any nature lover and animal lover should see at least once.

Pandas: The Journey Home is a documentary that every nature lover and animal lover should see at least once. For that matter it is a presentation that any fan of documentaries should see at least once. The main reason for this is its writing. The work of those charged with its writing composed it in such a way that it comes across as neither a standard wildlife nor an activist piece either. Rather it comes across as a hybrid of both. Being that it does, it will move viewers both to laughter and to tears throughout the course of its forty-minute run time. It will also teach audiences quite a bit without actually necessarily being a straight forward educational program. For instance, viewers will learn as the program progresses that female pandas are only fertile for roughly three to four days in their fertile periods. Audiences will also learn the shocking statistic of how few pandas currently live on their own in the wild today. That number alone will in itself be enough to keep viewers engaged, almost wanting to cheer for those working to return pandas to the wild in hopes of one day turning things around for pandas, increasing their numbers in the wild. These are a couple of pieces of information included in the presentation that will have audiences watching and thinking all at the same time. There is much more of course that audiences will learn on their own when they purchase the program for themselves. Whether for the noted fact and figures presented here or for the other in-depth information shared throughout, the material in whole shows the importance of the writing in the enjoyment and success of Pandas: The Journey Home. It is only part of what makes the program worth the watch, too. The work of the documentary’s cinematographer(s) adds even more enjoyment to it.

The information shared throughout the course Pandas: The Journey Home makes this presentation well worth the watch by itself. Of course on its own it can only go so far in keeping audiences engaged. That is where the show’s cinematography comes into play. The work of those behind the lens in this documentary is exceptional in its own right. Audiences get stunning views of the mountains in which the panda center resides and of the panda center itself throughout the course of the show. The footage isn’t just formulaic by any means at any point, either. There are aerial shots of the mountains, topped by low-hanging fog and clouds, river flowing below at their bases. There are also shots from ground level of the forests that populate the mountains. The view of the forests from ground level set against the raging river makes for even more “oomph.” On a related note, the footage of the panda center is just as interesting. Audiences don’t just get the standard exterior shots. They also get a first-hand look at the operations of the panda center from caring for the newborn cubs and playing with them as they grow to taking the cubs into the wild and preparing them for their lives on their own outside of the center’s walls. Those charged with capturing the whole thing on camera are to be highly for their work. As audiences will see for themselves, the whole of their filming will move viewers to awe. It collectively makes for yet another way in which Pandas: The Journey Home shows itself to be a worthwhile addition to any classroom and living room.

The work of the camera crew and those that were charged with assembling the information disseminated throughout the program collectively makes Pandas: The Journey Home a journey that audiences of all ages will enjoy whether in the living room or the classroom. For all of the value of the program’s cinematography and writing, none of it would mean anything with pacing that keeps viewers engaged. In the case of this documentary that is exactly what audiences get. Thanks to its collective pacing and related run time, at no point will audiences feel left in the proverbial dust, scratching their heads. Rather each separate segment of the program is given just enough time and attention. The end result of that timing and attention is a forty-minute documentary that feels anything but those forty minutes. It feels far shorter as a matter of fact. That is meant in the best way possible. Being that it keeps viewers fully engaged rather than bored out of their minds, the collective pacing and run time of Pandas: The Journey Home solidifies the documentary’s enjoyment and its place on this year’s list of the year’s best new documentaries.

Pandas: The Journey Home is one of the best of this year’s crop of documentaries. It is a production that is just as valuable and worth the watch in the living room as in the classroom. That is made clear initially via the in-depth information provided by the program. The information in question is a balance of both education and information. The work of those charged with recording its footage makes it even more enjoyable. Thanks to its solid pacing its forty-minute run time feels as if it flies right by all without losing viewers along the way. Because viewers are kept engaged from beginning to end, they will in turn see clearly the importance of the camera crew’s work and that of those charged with assembling the program’s information. All things considered Pandas: The Journey Home proves in the end to be a presentation that is just as valuable of an addition to any classroom or living room setting and a presentation that is one of the best of this year’s crop of new documentaries. It is available now in stores and online and can be ordered direct from Virgil Films’ online store at http://www.virgilfilmsent.com/store/product.php?pid=713. More information on this and other titles from Virgil Films is available online now at:

Website: http://www.virgilfilmsent.com

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

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

National Geographic Films, Virgil Films Team Up For New Documentary Film

Courtesy:  National Geographic Films/Virgil Films

Courtesy: National Geographic Films/Virgil Films

Virgil Films and National Geographic Films will release Nat Geo’s latest documentary Pandas: The Journey Home next month.

Pandas: The Journey Home will be released Tuesday, June 16th on 2D and 3D Blu-ray/DVD combo pack. Shot entirely in IMAX, the documentary follows a group of pandas from birth to transition back to the wild. In order to create the program, its filmmakers were given unprecedented access to the Wolong Panda Center in China. The thirty-six minute documentary presents the work put in to protect pandas and return them to the wild.

Actress Joely Richardson (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, Nip/Tuck) serves as narrator for the film. The project is helmed by director Nicolas Brown (Human Planet, Expedition Alaska) and produced by Caroline Hawkins (Meerkats 3D, Fatal Attractions) of Oxford Scientific Films. Hawkins noted in a recent interview part of her reason for signing on for this film explaining that pandas “are more than just cute and cuddly animals to see in the zoo. They have a place in the wild and in the ecosystem.”

Pandas: The Journey Home will be available from Virgil Films and National Geographic Films Tuesday, June 16th. It will be available in a 2D/3D Blu-ray + DVD combo pack for MSRP of $29.99. It will also be available on demand and via digital platforms in both SD and HD versions. Audiences can check out a trailer for Pandas: The Journey Home online now along with more information on the film online at http://movies.nationalgeographic.com/movies/pandas/. Audiences can get more information on this and other movies from National Geographic Films online at http://movies.nationalgeographic.com/movies. More information on this and other titles from Virgil films is available online now at:

Website: http://www.virgilfilmsent.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/virgilfilms

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.

No Mystery Here: Mysteries Of The Unseen World Is A Fun Film For Audiences Of All Ages

Courtesy:  Virgil Films/National Geographic/Lockheed Martin/FEI/National Science Foundation

Courtesy: Virgil Films/National Geographic/Lockheed Martin/FEI/National Science Foundation

National Geographic officially released its new documentary film Mysteries of the Unseen World this week. The film, which runs barely over the half-hour mark, is just as good a fit for any family’s home collection as it is a science class at any level of education. The film’s aforementioned run time is the central reason that it is such a good fit in both the living room and the classroom. By association, its pacing plays its own role, too. It’s just part of what makes it so worth the watch. Its clear presentation of two separate yet similar topics adds to its enjoyment. For those that might actually have a 3D Blu-ray player and 3D TV will also appreciate the fact that National Geographic has presented the film in both standard 2D and 3D format. Both formats are both Blu-ray presentations, too. So regardless of whether or not audiences have the equipment for a 3D presentation, every viewer will have reason to be happy when they pick up the film in its 2D/3D Blu-ray combo pack. Whether for this reason, for the fact that it clearly separates the topics into two separate segments or for its relatively short run time, audiences will see in the end that there is plenty to like about Mysteries of the Unseen World.

National Geographic’s new documentary Mysteries of the Unseen World is a good fit for the living room and the classroom alike. As a matter of fact, watching through this program, it proves to be a piece that audiences of any age will enjoy whether in the living room or the classroom. That is saying quite a bit. It is just as valuable for a junior high science class as a freshman level college science course. One reason for this vast reach is the program’s run time. Its total run time comes it at just over the half hour mark. To be more precise, its run time comes in at approximately thirty-nine minutes. That time seems to fly by, too even with the amount of information shared through the course of the film’s two segments. That is a credit to those charged with editing and assembling the film. As much information is shared through the course of the program–the wonders of the microscopic world and slow motion photography, and its history and impact–at no one point does it spend too much or too little time on the subjects or their related topics. Speaking of those topics, they are another reason that audiences of all ages will appreciate this film.

The run time and pacing of Mysteries of the Unseen World collectively make this presentation well worth the watch in and of themselves. No time is wasted on either end of the clock covering any of the material presented throughout the course of the film’s thirty-nine minute run time. It’s just part of what makes this documentary feature worth the watch regardless of audiences’ age. The material itself adds even more enjoyment to the program in whole. It examines the world first through the lens of a high-speed camera, showing specific situations both slowed and sped up. Those situations include a balloon being popped, a rose decaying, a glass and pitcher of milk falling and breaking and more. Anyone that remembers Discovery’s short-lived series Time Warp and who might have actually watched it will appreciate this segment. The second segment, which is clearly separated from the first, takes viewers into the microscopic world, introducing viewers to otherwise invisible objects. Those objects are both good and bad. For instance, there is a close up look at a butterfly egg and at a highly bendable material that–as narrator Forest Whitaker notes–could one day be used to build the long talked about elevator to space. On another level, there’s a note of the bumpy microscopic surface of a lily pad which could be used as a model to keep planes’ wings from icing over one day. To these extents, the things that we can’t see become that much more incredible. And they make for an especially welcome starting point for just such a discussion, again, in a science class at any level. On the other side of the discussion is a microscopic look at some not so nice objects such as head lice and even a mite that lives on people’s eyelashes. It’s unsettling but so intriguing that one can’t help but look. And it’s one more way that the content presented in Mysteries of the Unseen World makes this documentary worth the watch whether in the living room or the classroom. Coupled with the film’s run time and pacing, the content adds even more punch to the whole, making it that much more of a must have at least for any science teacher and lover of science in general.

The run time and pacing of Mysteries of the Unseen World taken into consideration with the overall content and its arrangement makes collectively for more than enough reason for audiences to check out the new documentary from National Geographic. While the noted elements are each equally important to the whole that is Mysteries of the Unseen World, there is still one more element to note of the film that should be noted that makes it a worth the watch. The element in question is the very fact that the documentary has been presented in a 2D/3D Blu-ray combo pack. The 2D/3D Blu-ray combo pack obviously presents the documentary both in its 2D presentation and enhanced 3D presentation. Those that have the necessary equipment to take in the 3D presentation will see for themselves just how amazing the microscopic world and the smaller world in whole look. It is the finishing touch to a documentary that along with its overall content, run time, and pacing shows to be a surprisingly fun and entertaining piece for audiences of all ages.

Mysteries of the Unseen World is available now in stores and online. The 2D/3D combo pack can be ordered online direct from Virgil Films’ online store and National Geographic’s online store. More information on this and other titles from Virgil Films is available online at:

Website: http://www.virgilfilmsent.com

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

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 reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Believe Me Boasts Both Depth And Entertainment

Courtesy:  Virgil Films

Courtesy: Virgil Films

Religion is one of the favorite topics of so many screenwriters out there. Going as far back as the 1923 take of The Ten Commandments (yes, there was one before the famed 1956 version starring Charlton Heston) and possibly even before that, religion has played a major part in the rich history of Hollywood. While many of the movies that have incorporated religion and religious themes into their scripts have gone on to be major success (E.g. Star Wars, Groundhog Day, The Ten Commandments) others have remained to this day just under that mainstream. They include the likes of Facing The Giants, The Nativity, Suing The Devil. While those movies in question might never have gained the massive popularity of their bigger-named brethren, it doesn’t lessen their enjoyment one bit. As a matter of fact, lesser known movies such as those listed or like United Artists’ 1994 religious based Saved! and The Chronicles of Narnia have proven that they are just as entertaining as their major name counterparts. Now indie studio Virgil Films has added another movie to that list of lesser-known but still enjoyable movies based in religion in the form of the entertaining and thoughtful story that is Believe Me. Believe Me was released on Blu-ray and DVD this week by Virgil Films. The script behind the movie lies at the center of its enjoyment. While the script is nothing new at any level it is still an enjoyable story nonetheless. The acting on the part of the movie’s young cast is another reason that audiences will enjoy the movie. Most audiences might not know the cast members’ names. Bu that doesn’t mean they are inexperienced. It shows in their interpretations of the script and their on-screen interactions. Last of note that makes the presentation in whole enjoyable is its pacing. Audiences never feel lost at any point in the story thanks to solid pacing, which ties right back to the work of the story’s writers. Because they never feel left behind, audiences in turn will have more time to take in the story that is Believe Me and discover exactly why the writing, acting, and pacing together make this a movie that is worth at least one watch and one that is just as enjoyable as any of its more well-known predecessors.
The script that was crafted for Virgil Films’ new movie Believe Me is nothing new in the world of movies. It centers on a young man—in this case Sam (Alex Russell—Chronicle, The Host, Unbroken) who plots to cheat a bunch of money out of a specific group of people and run off with said money. In the long run though, he thinks things over and eventually has a change of heart, which is ultimately revealed as the story unfolds. Part of the reason for his change of heart is the influence of a love interest played here by Johanna Braddy (Easy A, Greek, Avatar: The Last Airbender) This sort of plot goes all the way back to the beloved 1962 musical The Music Man and possibly even before that. So one might be left asking why exactly the movie is even worth one watch. The answer is simple. It isn’t The Music Man. It is similar. There’s no denying that. But the script’s entertaining yet deeply thought provoking look at the nature of people today calling themselves Christians sets it apart from The Music Man and so many others that have come before. While Saved! justifiably poked fun at the very true stereotypes of so many so-called “Christians,” it could be argued that Believe me comes across more as a commentary of sorts about the nature of not only the true believers who live their lives as best they can, but those delusional and hypocritical “Sunday Christians” (the ones who talk the talk but definitely don’t walk the walk on the weekdays), and the outright frauds. What audiences will really like about all of this is that Michael B. Allen and Will Bakke—the movie’s writers–don’t try to get preachy at any point in the story. Nor do they try to wax philosophical or even theological. They present the arguments of both sides in layman’s terms, thus making the story in whole more accessible for every day audiences. Simply put, Bakke and Allen don’t try to come across as being something that they aren’t. They just crafted a story that even despite not being the first of its kind at its roots, provides a solid starting point for some much more in-depth discussions among audiences both more versed in theological studies and those just attending bible studies every week. For that reason alone, it proves to be a movie that while independent is definitely worth at least one watch.
Allen and Bakke’s script by itself makes for plenty of reason for audiences to watch Believe Me at least once. The work of the movie’s young cast makes for even more reason for viewers to give the movie a chance. Lead actor Alex Russell conjures thoughts of James Van Der Beek (Dawson’s Creek, Varsity Blues, One Tree Hill) both with his look and his character’s overly confident swagger. It is that swagger that leads audiences to believe that Sam really does believe his scam is fine. On the opposite end is Sam’s love interest Callie (Johanna Braddy). Braddy is spot on as the strong, yet still slightly naïve type. Audiences will truly feel for Callie when she realizes that she has been fooled by Sam all along. That’s because of Braddy’s acting chops. She doesn’t try to ham it up. Rather she shows the utmost professionalism even with the understanding of the movie being an independent release. Braddy still makes Callie a fully believable and sympathetic character. Such a serious approach makes the juxtaposition of Callie to Sam is a prime example of why the work of Believe Me’s cast adds even more interest to the movie. It would be wrong to ignore the work of Russell’s other cast mates. Miles Fisher (J. Edgar, Final Destination 5, Bad Sports), Sinqua Walls (Teen Wolf, The Secret Life of the American Teenager, Pair of Kings), and Max Adler (Glee, Switched at Birth, Love and Honor) play Sam’s friends Pierce, Tyler, and Baker respectively. All four men together conjure thoughts of the crew from Warner Brothers’ hit movie The Hangover and its two sequels. The actors’ portrayals of their characters are just as believable as those by Russell and Braddy. Whether for their work or that of the rest of the movie’s cast, audiences will agree in watching Believe Me that collectively speaking, the cast’s acting is one more reason that audiences should see Believe Me at least once.
Thanks to both the work of the movie’s writers and that of its cast, Believe Me proves itself to be a movie that is just as interesting a work as any of its more well-known counterparts churned out by “Hollywood’s Power Five Studios.” In much the same vein, the story’s pacing should also be noted in regards to the movie’s pros. Throughout the course of the “God Squad’s” tour to raise funds for its fake charity, viewers are never left feeling lost. From the scene transitions to the scenes themselves, Allen and Bakke maintain full control over the story’s speed. This includes the dialogue and every other aspect of each scene. That control gives audiences plenty of time to take everything in and in turn appreciate even more all of the movie’s little nuances and all of it larger, more obvious elements. The end result of this ease coupled with the solid work of the movie’s cast and its writers is a movie that yet again is just as worth the watch as any of its more well-known counterparts. Because it holds its own so solidly with those movies, it proves in the end to be a movie worth at least one watch.
Whether for its writing, the work of the movie’s cast, or the story’s pacing—directly tied to the writing—there is plenty to say about why audiences should watch Believe Me at least once. Audiences that do will agree in watching it that it is just as interesting as any religiously based movie churned out past or present from “Hollywood’s Power Five Studios.” It is available now on Blu-ray and DVD in stores and online. It can be ordered online direct from Virgil Films’ online store at https://www.virgilfilmsent.com/store/product.php?pid=704. More information on this and other titles from Virgil Films is available online at:

Website: https://www.virgilfilmsent.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VirgilFilms

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