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Mon
06
Jun

Make it a Game Night with Deadly Games, Now on Blu-ray from Arrow

Deadly Games

1982’s Deadly Games, written and directed by Scott Mansfield, is an early and unique entry into the start of the 80’s slasher film craze.  Recently restored from the original negatives, Deadly Games sets the standard for every stalker POV shot in all the horror films that came after it.

Mansfield’s vision of a masked slasher who chooses his victims by playing board games and rolling the dice is an odd choice but works exceedingly well with the stalking portions of the movie. Mixed with the strong character-driven scenes, it creates a nice balance that is an enjoyable watch which unfortunately loses most of its steam towards the final act.

Thu
26
May

Make a Date Night with Girls Nite Out, Now on Blu-ray from Arrow

Often unknown or overlooked, 1982’s Girls Nite Out is about as basic as you can get when it comes to slasher movies of that era. Mixing teen comedy with horror has always been a staple of these films, and this one does not disappoint. Going so far as to choose a giant bear school mascot costume as the killer’s choice of garb, the comedy feels forced at instances, and some of the better known actors of the film just phone in their performances throughout the duration of their screen time.

With horror icons Hal Holbrook (Creepshow), Rutanya Alda (Amityville II: The Possession), and comedy star Julia Montgomery (Revenge of the Nerds), Director Robert Deubel sets the stage for college campus hijinks and horror when a group of coeds are targeted by a crazy killer in a giant teddy bear suit during an all-night scavenger hunt.

Tue
24
May

Uncharted Goes Off Course from Goonies, Indiana Jones

Uncharted Blu-ray

When I sat down to watch Uncharted, it was without any expectations set by the video game franchise upon which the film is based. That is because I was unaware of this game franchise until after I watched the film and got into the special features. Thus unencumbered, I perhaps enjoyed the film a bit more than established fans may have, adaptations seemingly falling victim to perennial disappointment.

Tom Holland (Spider-Man: No Way Home) plays the role of Nathan Drake, a pickpocket with bartending skills right out of Cocktail. He's also a bit of a history buff, believing himself to be a descendent of the great explorer, Sir Francis Drake. He was told this at a young age by his brother, who was raised with him in an orphanage before escaping a police charge for a museum theft he and Nathan pulled as juveniles.

Mon
23
May

Infinite Melds Multiple SF Tropes Into Muddled Movie

Infinite on Blu-ray

Mark Wahlberg headlines this sci-fi outing that blends elements of Highlander with The Matrix and Inception, resulting in a story that seems to advance so that each scene can cover the plot hole of the previous one.

The title, Infinite, refers to the group of people who have endured multiple reincarnations, and having held on to all their memories of their past lives. Why this is happening to them is never explained, even though the question of it is what drives the movie forward. The one exception to the memory rule is Wahlberg's character, Evan McCauley. In his past lives he has gone by the name Treadway (played in flashback scenes by Dylan O'Brien). Due to some accident earlier in this life, Evan has lost the memories of his past lives while retaining the instincts and lessons, such as sword forging and martial arts.

Tue
10
May

More Kung Fu Than You Can Shake a Stick At: Arrow Video's The Eight Diagram Pole Fighter

8 Diagram Pole Fighter

Adding to the Shaw Scope box set that Arrow Video released earlier this year, 1984’s The Eight Diagram Pole Fighter, previously left out of the collection, now gets its rightful spotlight with this deluxe standalone release.

The film is known for its outstanding spear fight sequences as well as the real-life tragedy of star Alexander Fu, who suffered a fatal car accident before the filming was completed. Honoring his memory, the script was only partially rewritten, and Fu's character does not appear in the final climatic showdown as originally planned.

Sun
08
May

Arrow Video Brings Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein to Life on 4K

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

In 1994 director, Kenneth Branagh brought the most accurate telling of Mary Shelley’s classic novel, Frankenstein, to the big screen once again. But this time it was so faithful to the original story it turned off many casual horror fans and “normies” who were expecting a green, stitch-covered, nuts and bolts, flat top with huge boots zombie tale, who were instead given an intellectual, almost sympathetic at times, creature no one would recognize.

Mon
18
Apr

You Have the Right to Remain Entertained: Castellari’s Rogue Cops and Racketeers Come to Blu-ray

Rogue Cops and Racketeers

Italy is well known for Giallo horror thrillers and Poliziotteschi (Euro Crime) films of the late sixties and into the seventies -- and one of the most prolific directors of this era has to be Enzo G. Castellari.

Gritty action-packed police dramas of that time were all the rage, and Castellari was quick to monopolize and cash in on the Euro Crime film wave that was gaining popularity all over the world in that era.

In 1976’s The Big Racket, Inspector Nico Palmieri (Fabio Testi, What Have You Done to Solange?) is hot on the heels of a gang of ruthless racketeers. Realizing he’s not going to get anywhere within the confines of the law, Nico recruits a crack squad of civilians to dole out their own brand of justice.

Wed
13
Apr

No Lie: Arrow Video’s Collection of Claude Chabrol Films are Here

Lies & Deceit

Arrow Video has released five forgotten classic French noir films from the late director Claude Chabrol, now available for the first time on Blu-ray to the American viewing audience. Very underappreciated and often overlooked by film historians of today, Chabrol was a master of his craft, and this set, entitled Lies & Deceit, encompasses five of his standout directorial pieces of his era.

Largely inspired by Alfred Hitchcock, Chabrol relied heavily on making thriller films that appealed to the French moviegoing audience, and gave his wife, Stéphane Audran, a leading role in most of them.

Wed
13
Apr

Spider-Man: No Way Home Comes Home... to Blu-ray

Spider-Man: No Way Home on Blu-ray

The Marvel Cinematic Universe delivered top-notch fan excitement when it premiered Spider-Man: No Way Home in theaters last December. The conjunction of all the actors who portrayed Spider-Man on the big screen, coupled with all the villains we've seen, generated an excitement for Spidey fans the world over.

And now the spectacle of the Marvel multiverse comes home on Blu-ray, allowing fans to relive the adventure -- and to pore over scenes in high-definition pauses to seek out more hints and Easter eggs about the other aspects of the multiverse.

Mon
28
Mar

2021's Slumber Party Massacre Successfully Kills off 30-Year Franchise

Slumber Party Massacre 2021

Call it a sequel, a reboot, a remake, or a re-imagining of the cult favorite series SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE from the 80’ and 90’s, but this updated story to the series does not belong anywhere near those classic horror films on your movie collection shelves. Overly campy with forced humor and comedy, 90 percent of the jokes fall flat in this gender-bending tale that could have been a really good next installment of the series if they would have just stuck to the original premise of the film.

We meet the daughter of one of the original girls from the series, as she and her friends return to the cabin where her mother escaped the clutches of Russ Thorn to finally take him out and put an end to the horrors they had been living with their whole lives.

Fri
25
Mar

Wake Up to Arrow's 'To Sleep So As To Dream' on Blu-ray

To Sleep

Arrow Video Just released the directorial debut of Kaizo Hayashi (Circus Boys, Zipang) with his 1986 film To Sleep So as To Dream.

A love letter to the films he grew up on, Hayashi mashes as many genre’s as he is able to in this groundbreaking film that homages the films of the 1900’s thru 1950’s.

Harkening back to the serial detective stories, To Sleep So as To Dream begins when an elderly woman hires two fledgling detectives to help find a young actress from a forgotten film reel who appears to have been kidnapped by the movie company that made the film. Bungling their way thru leads that do not go anywhere, you get the feeling that this may not be a detective story after all, but a comedy in disguise when there hasn’t been any actual detective work during the whole first half of the film.

Sun
20
Mar

Sniffing Out "The Bloodhound" from Arrow Video, Now on Blu-ray

The Bloodhound

Arrow Video brings to Blu-ray THE BLOODHOUND,a thriller/mystery tale loosely re-imagined from Edgar Allen Poe's classic tale, FALL OF THE HOUSE OF THE USHER, written and directed by Patrick Picard in his feature-length directorial debut.

Francis (Liam Aiken) returns to the home of his long-time childhood friend, JP (Joe Adler), after hearing of JP’s waning health from an unknown affliction. Francis quickly begins to question this decision after seeing how JP has changed from when they were children. Living a life of seclusion off the family’s trust fund, JP and his twin sister Vivian (Annalise Basso), who is locked up in the basement of the home, set the stage for Francis’ downward spiral into the madness that overtakes him every minute he stays.

Sun
20
Mar

2008 Found-Footage Film, Bryan Loves You, Should Have Remained Lost

Bryan Loves You

MVD entertainment brings to Blu-ray this month the 2008 film, Bryan Loves You, written and directed by Seth Landau.

Bryan Loves You is a found-footage movie told from the point of view of the main character, Jonathan (played by Landau), thru the lens of his camcorder and various security cameras positioned thru ought the film. Copying the style of The Blair Witch Project film that was insanely popular at the time, and packed with an all-star cast of horror and B-movie icons (George Wendt, Tiffany Shepis, Tony Todd, Brinke Stevens, and Lloyd Kaufman), this movie was sure to be a hit…right?

Thu
17
Mar

Final Season of Supergirl Lands on Blu-ray

Supergirl 6

The Supergirl series is one that will be remembered as beginning with an entertaining, if light, introductory season, before spiralling uncontrollably into overworked, overwrought, identity-driven episodes. And, like most CW shows, once the series migrated from NBC to the CW, it was yet another opportunity for a lead character to take a back seat to a team of lesser heroes loosely based on other DC Comics trademarks.

The sixth season opens with what would have been the final episodes of the fifth season, cut short for Covid precautions. Kara (Melissa Benoist) must face down a now god-level Lex Luthor (Jon Cryer), sacrificing herself to the Phantom Zone, where she remains for a few episodes until her friends get her out.

Thu
10
Mar

The Batman (No, Not That One) Lands on Blu-ray

The Batman Complete Series

It's hard to believe it was nearly 20 years ago that The Batman debuted on television (and don't even get me started on how many yesterdays it was since Batman: The Animated Series began!), but fans of the show can now binge the entire series with this 6-disc Blu-ray collection from Warner Brothers.

Wed
09
Mar

Escape from L.A. Bursts onto 4K Ultra

Escape from L.A.

Kurt Russell reprised his surly Snake Plissken in John Carpenter's dystopic Escape From L.A., the sequel to his much better effort, Escape from New York. In this sequel, California has been destroyed by a cataclysmic earthquake, leaving the city of Los Angeles as an island. The rest of the union has fallen to the rule of a theocratic President (Cliff Robertson) who has turned the disconnected city into a prison for the nation's undesirables -- those who engage in activity that run counter to his faux-Christian fascism.

Snake is called into duty when a terrorist (Georges Corraface) entices the First Daughter, Utopia (A.J. Langer) to join in his revolution. Snake's mission is to retrieve Utopia and foil the terrorist's plans. But Los Angeles is a minefield of criminals, and the true motives behind Plissken's mission are even more twisted than the island's inhabitants.

Thu
03
Mar

Blood-Spattered Beaches and Bikinis: Troma's Surf Nazis Must Die Comes to Blu-ray

Surf Nazis Must Die

Troma has rereleased its 1987 break-out film, SURF NAZIS MUST DIE, to Blu-ray. The loving fans of this low budget, highly insane, cult classic can once again grace their collection shelves with yet another repackaging of one of Troma’s highly touted first films.

Set in the wake of a deadly earthquake, California is now a desolate wasteland overrun by neo-Nazis, surf punks, and hooligans. Rival gang members are in constant struggle to gain control of what’s left of the beaches to dominate the people who remain.

Wed
23
Feb

Catwoman: Hunted a Sexy Sixties-Style Spy-and-Steal

Catwoman: Hunted

The DC Animated Universe projects have been a little hit-or-miss lately, largely when they tried to stay within a cohesive universe that was almost-but-not-quite the New 52. More recently, however, they have had successes with one-off stories that focus more on the tale at hand rather than with how to make it fit into the rest of the DCAU. The 70s grindhouse style Batman: Soul of the Dragon is a good example of this.

With Catwoman: Hunted, director Shinsuke Terasawa brings together several fun, nostalgic elements, delivering an anime-aesthetic film full of 1960s spy-caper style. The result is surprisingly fresh interpretation of the characters that doesn't diminish them but rather enhances.

Thu
03
Feb

Ghostbusters: Afterlife Carries Spirit of the Franchise

Ghostbusters: Afterlife Bluray

It's the sequel fans waited three decades to see, but in the end Ghostbusters: Afterlife is the torch-passing movie that holds up to the expectations set by Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters 2. 

While everything about Ghostbusters: Afterlife has the flavor of the originals, there are some story elements that make this ride less-than-smooth. Don't worry, we'll get to those, soon enough.

Wed
02
Feb

Everybody was Kung Fu Fighting over Arrow Video’s ShawScope Limited Edition Box Set

Shaw Scope

The 1960s to early 70s were a golden age of Kung Fu films. From the classic films of Bruce Lee to the comedy of Jackie Chan, no other studio has a deeper understanding of the genre then the Shaw Brothers. Producing hundreds of films in that era, they revolutionized the genre by putting the best talents they could find in front of and behind the camera, and gave us some of the most iconic martial art films ever to grace the silver screen.

This first ever definitive series by Arrow Video karate-kicks off volume one and karate-chops the competition, putting to shame every other release of these films.

Each film in the set is given the royal treatment: all twelve movies are painstakingly remastered and, in some cases, completely retooled to incorporate footage long thought lost to the home video gods of yesterday.

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