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REVIEW: Swamp Thing: The Complete Series

REVIEW: Swamp Thing: The Complete Series

REVIEW: Swamp Thing: The Complete SeriesI was just the right age for Swamp Thing when he shambled into comics back in the early 1970s. I had years of super-heroes committed to memory so I was primed for something different. Along came Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson’s creation and it dealt nicely with familiar horror tropes but with enough of a twist to feel different along with continuing characters and exquisite artwork.

The arrival of Swamp Thing on DC Universe was equally well-timed in that we’ve had plenty of super-hero films and live-action television so it was a welcome addition to their initial lineup. Then came the news that there was trouble on the set, the series order was cut, then canceled after one ten-episode season. We were left with plenty of unfulfilled potential.

For those who missed out on the show, Warner Home Entertainment has released Swamp Thing the Complete Series in a fine Blu-ray package. I need to stipulate that one of the executive producers and writers of the show is Mark Verheiden, a long time friend so I am biased. Where I am not biased is in saying this is incredibly superior to the Wes Craven films and USA series from the 1990s.

The show takes its cues from the Wein/Wrightson stories but has totally reimagined the characters and settings, adding in other characters from across the DC Universe. Let’s start with Alec Holland (Andy Bean) as a disgraced scientist having worked for Avery Sunderland (Will Patton), who is a cross between Lex Luthor and Huey Long in this version. He and his wife Maria (Virginia Madsen) still mourn the loss of their teen daughter, harboring blame on Abby Arcane (Crystal Reed), who left town as a result. She now works for the CDC but when things go wonky in Marais, Louisiana comes home to investigate.

We have Holland becoming the Swamp Thing (Derek Mears), who is horrified at his transformation and slow to learn his abilities. His is being hunted, though, by Holland, who recruits Jason Woodrue (Kevin Durand), who subsequently becomes the Floronic Man, and Lucilla Cable (Jenifer Beals), the local top cop, and her son, Matt (Henderson Wade).

As much as this a horror/supernatural show, it is told through the prism of a soap opera with various entanglements complicating motivations and subsequent actions. Sometimes this provides for interesting drama, and other times is a distraction. Additionally, Nimue Inwudu, a.k.a. Madame Xanadu (Jeryl Prescott) is underused and Daniel Cassidy/Blue Devil (Ian Ziering) feels tacked on and his role may have suffered from the truncated episode order. We even get the Phantom Stranger (Macon Blair), who needed more to do.

Len Wiseman, from the Underworld franchise, and James Wan are among the executive producers and each brings their own approach to the storytelling, so we have plenty of gory, horrific set-pieces. The swamp setting and small rural town are nicely depicted and the shadows help with the mood. As a result, the 1080 dpi transfer was vital in capturing the colors and shades, and they do a fine job here, so you avoid getting lost in the muck.

All ten episodes are included with no special features, which is a disappointment, but the series is well worth watching for fans. It’s also reassuring all is not lost as we saw Swamp Thing both before and after the Arrowverse’s Crisis on Infinite Earths. One can hope we get a chance to revisit Earth-19.

Watchmen Limited Series Set for June Home Video Release

Watchmen Limited Series Set for June Home Video Release

BURBANK, CA (February 13, 2020) – Fans can dive even further into the alternate world that has captivated audiences since its debut when Warner Bros. Home Entertainment releases Watchmen: An HBO Limited Series on Blu-ray ($44.98 SRP US/ $49.99 SRP Canada) and DVD ($39.99 US SRP US / $44.98 SRP Canada) June 2, 2020. Featuring all nine riveting one-hour episodes – plus over 90 minutes of bonus content, including two never-before-seen special features exclusive to the Blu-ray and DVD. Created for television and executive produced by Damon Lindelof (Lost, The Leftovers), Watchmen drew 1.5 million Viewers in its series premiere, becoming the second-highest rated HBO original series debut of the past three years, only behind Big Little Lies. The show is also currently “certified fresh” with a 96% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Set in an alternate history where “superheroes” are treated as outlaws, Watchmen embraces the nostalgia of the original groundbreaking graphic novel of the same name, while attempting to break new ground of its own. Watchmen reunites Lindelof with Academy® and Emmy® Award-winning actress Regina King (The Leftovers, Southland, If Beale Street Could Talk) leading the cast as Angela Abar/Sister Night. The series also stars Emmy® Award winner Jean Smart (Legion, Dirty John), Don Johnson (Miami Vice), Tim Blake Nelson (O Brother, Where Art Thou?, Leaves of Grass), Hong Chau (Homecoming), Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (Aquaman), Andrew Howard (Bates Motel), Jacob Ming-Trent (Ray Donovan), Tom Mison (Sleepy Hollow), Sara Vickers (The Crown) and Dylan Schombing (Sharp Objects), with Academy Award® winner Louis Gossett Jr. (An Officer and a Gentleman), and Academy, Emmy® and Tony® Award winning actor Jeremy Irons (The Lion King, Reversal of Fortune).

Produced for HBO by White Rabbit in association with Warner Bros. Television, the series was created for television by Lindelof based on characters co-created for DC by Dave Gibbons.  The series is executive produced by Lindelof, Tom Spezialy, Nicole Kassell, Stephen Williams and Joseph E. Iberti.

“The critical accolades for Watchmen have not slowed down since the series premiere,” said Rosemary Markson, Senior Vice President Marketing, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. “We are thrilled to release Watchmen: An HBO Limited Series on DVD and Blu-ray with even more exclusive new content for fans to enjoy.”

9 ONE-HOUR EPISODES

  1. It’s Summer and We’re Running Out of Ice
  2. Martial Feats of Comanche Horsemanship
  3. She Was Killed By Space Junk
  4. If You Don’t Like My Story, Write Your Own
  5. Little Fear of Lightning
  6. This Extraordinary Being
  7. An Almost Religious Awe
  8. A God Walks Into Abar
  9. See How They Fly

EXCLUSIVE BLU-RAY/DVD SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Hooded Justice
  • The Colossal King – Adrian Veidt

ADDITIONAL SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Watchmen: Unmasked
  • 2019 New York Comic Con
  • Watchmen: Masked and Dangerous
  • Watchmen S1: Trailer
  • Character Trailers: Sister Night, Blond Man and Looking Glass
  • Becoming Sister Night
  • Notes from the Watchmen graphic novel artist Dave Gibbons
  • Rorschach Featurette
  • Watchmen: Alternate History
  • It’s Raining Squids
  • Squid Shelter with Tim Blake Nelson
  • Andrij Parekh on Directing
  • Sadiqua Bynum runs, jumps and falls for Sister Night
  • Anatomy of a Fight Scene
  • Glimpses – The Visual Effects of Watchmen

DIGITAL

The first season of Watchmen is currently available to own on Digital. Digital purchase allows consumers to instantly stream and download to watch anywhere and anytime on their favorite devices. Digital movies and TV shows are available from various digital retailers including Amazon Prime Video, AppleTV, Google Play, Vudu and others. A Digital Code is also included in the U.S. with the purchase of specially marked Blu-ray discs for redemption and cloud storage.

BASICS

Street Date: June 2, 2020

Order Due Date: April 28, 2020

BD and DVD Presented in 16×9 widescreen format

Run Time: Approx. 522 minutes

Enhanced Content Run Time: Approx. 100 minutes

DVD

Price: $39.99 SRP US / $44.98 SRP Canada

DVD Audio: English (5.1)

DVD Subtitles: English, French and Latin Spanish

BLU-RAY

Price: $44.98 US / $49.99 SRP Canada

BD Audio: English (5.1)

BD Subtitles: English, French and Latin Spanish

Jumanji: The Next Level Finds its way Home in March

Jumanji: The Next Level Finds its way Home in March

CULVER CITY, CALIF. (February 11, 2020) – Return to the mysterious and sprawling world of Jumanji with Dwayne Johnson (Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw), Jack Black (Goosebumps), Kevin Hart (Ride Along) and Karen Gillan (Avengers: Endgame) when JUMANJI: THE NEXT LEVEL comes to Digital March 3 and 4K Ultra HDTM, Blu-ray and DVD March 17 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

Helmed once again by Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle director Jake Kasdan, JUMANJI: THE NEXT LEVEL, crossing over $700 million at the global box office, brings the fan-favorites back into the game, along with Jumanji newcomers Awkwafina (The Farewell), Rory McCann (TV’s “Game of Thrones”) with Danny Glover (Sorry to Bother You) and Danny DeVito (Dumbo).

JUMANJI: THE NEXT LEVEL catches up with Spencer (Alex Wolff), Fridge (Ser’Darius Blain), Martha (Morgan Turner) and Bethany (Madison Iseman) three years after their first adventure in Jumanji’s mystical video game world. When Spencer goes missing inside the game ahead of the group’s planned reunion from college, his friends, along with his grandfather (Danny DeVito) and his grandfather’s friend (Danny Glover), once again inhabit the avatars of Dr. Bravestone (Dwayne Johnson), “Mouse” Finbar (Kevin Hart), Professor Sheldon Oberon (Jack Black) and Ruby Roundhouse (Karen Gillan) to rescue him. As they return to Jumanji, they discover that nothing is as they expect. With more action and surprises, the players will have to brave parts unknown and unexplored, from the arid deserts to the snowy mountains, in order to escape.

The bonus materials for JUMANJI: THE NEXT LEVEL include a gag reel, several behind-the-scenes featurettes, in-depth scene breakdowns, a brand new jingle and more! The 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, and DVD also include a fully interactive collectible map that employs Augmented Reality to bring Jumanji to life via smartphone. The experience provides up to ten minutes of gameplay and allows users to create their own 8-bit Avatar, navigate a series of mini-games and much more!

JUMANJI: THE NEXT LEVEL has a runtime of approximately 123 minutes and is rated PG-13 for adventure action, suggestive content and some language. The IMAX® Enhanced 4K Ultra HDTM edition features digitally remastered content presented with High Dynamic Range and DTS:X® audio for a more immersive at-home entertainment experience.

BLU-RAY AND DIGITAL BONUS MATERIALS:

  • Gag Reel
  • “Rhys Darby Wants To Jingle”: How do you top Jack Black and Nick Jonas’s unforgettable theme song for the first one?  Everyone’s favorite Non-Player Character, Rhys Darby is ready to take it to the next, next level.
  • “Body Swapping: Snapping Into Character”: “In the latest Jumanji adventure, the avatar roles are turned on their heads with new characters and hilarious performances.”
  • “Back Together: Reuniting the Cast”: Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan and Jack Black are back and better than ever as they share their excitement to reunite.
  • “Level Up: Making Jumanji: The Next Level”: From breathtaking scenery, wild adventure, new characters and more- go behind the scenes with the cast and crew as they take Jumanji to the Next Level.
  • “Scene Breakdown: Ostrich Chase”: Jump in your dune buggy and go inside the epic ostrich chase scene as the filmmakers and visual effects team breakdown the creation of this memorable scene.
  • “Scene Breakdown: Mandrill Bridges”: Moving rope bridges, giant mandrills and incredible stunt work make the mandrills attack one of the most adrenaline pack parts of this film.  In this scene breakdown, see how they pulled it off.
  •  “Awkwafina Cat Burglar”: To prepare for her roles as a pickpocket, Ming Fleetwood, superstar Awkwafina got a little too method behind the scenes.
  • “NPC Confessions: Jurgen The Brutal”: Being the bad guy isn’t all glory.  Jurgen The Brutal gets real in this candid confessional.
  • “Grow Up:” Danny DeVito and Danny Glover help Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart get in touch with their inner grumpy old men.
  • “Telenovela”: Kevin Hart gets lost in translation in this melodramatic promo.
  • “VFX Pre-Vis: Zeppelin Battle”: Compare the detail of the visual effects pre-visualization reel and the final picture breakdown of the thrilling Zeppelin battle.
  • “VFX Pre-Vis: Ostrich Chase”: Track the progression from pre-visualization to finished scene in a side by side comparison of the ostrich chase.
  • AR GAME: The 4K UHD, Blu-ray, and DVD include a collectible map that is fully interactive, employing Augmented Reality to bring Jumanji to life through a smartphone, allowing users to create their own 8-bit Avatar, navigate a series of mini-games and much more!

DVD BONUS MATERIALS:

  • “Body Swapping: Snapping Into Character”
  • “Back Together: Reuniting the Cast”
  • “Level Up: Making Jumanji: The Next Level”

Michael Davis: What Happened…?

I own a rare Japanese GI Joe figure which I was lucky enough to have signed by Don Levine GI Joes’s main creator. No idea what it’s worth but I know it’s pretty pricey— but I’d never sell it. Nor would I sell my prized Captain Action or any of the toys action figures or dolls I once collected.

I say once because the thrill of tracking down something I once had as a kid has left me.

That sucks.

There’s a huge TV in almost every room of my home and my studio. Each room has a gaming system hooked up in it. I have not played a video game in perhaps four years.

That really sucks.

It’s been twenty years or so since I went into the dealers area at Comic-Con. There was a time when I’d drop a ton of cash at SDCC and not think about it twice. Suffering from insomnia, I’d often make late evening runs to Target. I’d come back with all sort of stuff, mostly superhero related, and spend the wee hours of the night setting them up.

I mentioned dolls earlier and I meant dolls. I have a sizable collection of Barbie’s. Yeah, I’m a six foot two inch Black man from the hood and I once collected Barbie. I no longer do that either.

That may be the biggest suck of all. Laugh if you will but, “Hey, would you like to come to my home and see my Barbie collection” beats wanna play Call of Duty with the ladies each and every time fanboy.

What happened? Why have I stopped playing with toys?

  1. One day I looked at my Barbie’s and realized I’m not Gay so I stopped.
  2. My girlfriend and my wife sat me down for an intervention. They convinced this was not a good look for a middle aged Black man.
  3. I grew up.
  4. All of the above.
  5. None of the above

The answer is E none of those things are the reason.

The answer is that fun-loving silly bastard who lost his mind when he met Mickey Mouse at Disneyland is gone. “IT’S MICKEY MOUSE! F*******K!!!” I screamed like a little girl when I saw Mickey walking towards me during my first visit to Disneyland. I was there with Denys Cowan who had invited me along. This was a trip for Denys’ young son Miles he told me to come along because I’d love Disneyland.

I didn’t.

I was NOT impressed. The Happiest Place on Earth my ass. I was bored out of my mind until Mickey rolled up.

Mickey looked with disbelief. This was something new to Mr. Mouse: a grown man so freaking out over him. I was acting like a kid and could care less who saw me. THIS was Cloud 9.

YEAH I know it’s a man in a freakin suit I didn’t care.

It was nighttime and Mickey was on his way to clock out. A few kids had come over once gone he turned to me and I felt so special.

Suit man I know.

“Hey can I tell you a joke?” Mickey said. WTF?? Mickey doesn’t talk at Disneyland or anywhere he only speaks on film not in person. This freaking RAT just RUINED my good time.

NAH! Just kidding! I felt even more special!!!

Suit I KNOW

“YES! Tell me a joke, Mickey!”

I swear this is true and you can ask Denys Cowan. First Mickey pleaded PLEASE don’t tell anyone because he could get fired. When he heard my F bomb he figured I’d appreciate this joke:

Mickey Mouse is in divorce court and the judge is shaking his head.

“Mr. Mouse, you cannot use insanity as a plea in a divorce case.”

Mickey looked at the judge and said; “I didn’t say she was insane, I SAID SHE WAS F**K**G GOOFY!”

Mickey Mouse told me that joke at Disneyland, I cried I was laughing so hard.

I’m still crying but not because of any joke.

This article started as a rant. Gucci is selling Mickey Mouse tee shirts for $650. You can find a much better designed one for $14.99 at Macys. To be fair, Gucci’s logo is on their shirt so that easily justifies the $635.01 extra. To be even fairer, Gucci has Mickey Mouse tees WITH the Gucci logo that goes for $20 bucks.

What the difference? The only difference I see is the $20 dollar shirts feature a dumb as dirt looking Mickey. I’m not kidding. But fear not; for $650.00 you can have a cool looking Mickey.

That lighthearted description is far from my original fire and brimstone class warfare damn those elitist bastards who make poor kids think they need $200 sneakers to be cool article I wrote.

That article has been done for a while. I hope I never run it. It’s bitter cold and utterly depressing.

Like its author.

Once my writing was upbeat comical and downright silly. “How To Meet Girls” was a tongue in cheek fanboy guide to getting a girlfriend. I listed ways fanboys could improve their zero chances to 1 or perhaps 2 out of 100. It was a standard article running a few hundred words. The next week my follow up article for fangirls, “How To Meet Guys,” was exactly one sentence. “Be a girl.”

That may not be the sentence that printed in Comics Buyers Guide where it printed. I reread a bunch of different drafts and I’m unsure which one ran.

Boy, did I like myself back then. I cracked myself up daily, not caring if anyone else got the joke. I thought it was funny so I was satisfied. One column was “Is You Stupid?” The first sentence stated it was slang used in the Black Community but I was confident some knucklehead would comment on my grammar regardless if they read that I’d written “Is You Stupid?” on purpose.

Much to my surprise no one commented.

LIKE HELL THEY DID-ANT. Yep, there was someone that stupid. Yes, DID-ANT is how I meant to write that and you’re supposed to channel a Black girl from the hood when you read it.

“OH NO YOU DID-ANT!”

Yep. It’s like that…and that’s the way it is.

I once wrote an entire article using Dragon Dictate. The damn near $200 version that I paid for. So, I guess I is stupid two. I didn’t correct one misspelling I’d spent hours “teaching” that piece of crap program how to interpret my voice and was done correcting it. I’d say; “My name is Michael Davis, I’m the Master Of The Universe.” Dragon Dictate would write; “My nanny is Michael Avis I masturbate first.” That may or may not be true but it’s not what I dictated.

I’d write silly “what ifs?” Like what if Marvel Superheroes existed in the real world and did real world dumb stuff that’s so popular today? Like Speed Dating? The following is from Brokeback Marvel:

Johnny Storm is seated across from a pretty blond with short hair.

“Hi, I’m Johnny Storm.”

“Hello, I’m Paris Hilton. So Johnny, what do you do?’

“I’m a member of the Fantastic Four.”

“That a rock group? Oh wow! Do you have a CD out?? Do you know Justin Timberlake?”

”It’s not a rock group. We fight crime.”

“You a cop?”

“No.”

“Oh God, you’re a security guard??”

“No. I’m a super hero.”

“That a kind of sandwich?”

“No, we defend the earth from super villains.”

“Oh, really?”

“Yes. Really.”

“That pays a lot?”

“No, I do it for free. Hey where you going?”

“I don’t date men without a job. You have a trust fund or something?”

“No.”

“Your daddy rich?”

“No.”

“Then why on earth should I go out with you?”

“Flame on!”

“Wow…that’s hot.”

I said it was silly, didn’t I? That article got me a very nice letter from a very big star.

Fun Fact: There are some who think I drop names for one or two reasons.

  1. I’m Bragging, or,
  2. I’m full of shit.

I’m neither but remember those points.

The following is an excerpt from: “What about me? What about my needs?”

There is a TV show called Me or the Dog. I think it’s on Animal Planet. This show is about how dogs run the lives of people. There was a woman on one of these shows who actually said she preferred her dogs to her husband and son. She said if given a choice between her family and the dogs she would put the family out of the home before the dogs. I think she thinks she’s a dog. Well if she thinks she’s a dog then I will address this in a way she would understand.

That bitch is crazy.

 

See? Silly but fun! I once wrote funny stuff almost every week. That didn’t stop me from writing about serious subjects many of which touched a nerve in some. Two articles got me death threats. Yep, Death threats.

But enough about my fans! I was going to list one more excerpt from my absolute favorite silly article but I couldn’t decide what to pull from it so here:

https://www.comicmix.com/2008/01/24/the-worst-tv-show-ever-part-1-by-michael-davis/

All that merriment begs the question; what happened to that fun-loving silly bastard who lost his mind when he met Micky Mouse at Disneyland?

This happened…

End Part 1

Little Women Make a Home on Disc in April

Little Women Make a Home on Disc in April

CULVER CITY, CALIF. (February 11, 2019) – Nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Greta Gerwig’s fresh, unique and modern adaptation of the timeless Louisa May Alcott masterpiece LITTLE WOMEN comes home on Digital March 10 and Blu-ray™ and DVD April 7 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
The Blu-ray, DVD and digital releases will take viewers even deeper into the beloved story of Jo, Meg, Amy and Beth with over 45 minutes of fascinating bonus features. See how Writer/Director Greta Gerwig led this modern adaptation of a literary classic with a magnificent new cast, incredible art direction, elaborate costumes, set pieces and how she took inspiration from the real-life Orchard House where Louisa May Alcott lived and wrote LITTLE WOMEN.

Writer-director Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird) has crafted a LITTLE WOMEN that draws on both the classic novel and the writings of Louisa May Alcott, and unfolds as the author’s alter ego, Jo March, reflects back and forth on her fictional life. Gerwig’s take on the beloved story of the March sisters—four young women each determined to live life on their own terms—is both timeless and timely. Portraying Jo, Meg, Amy and Beth March, the film stars Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson, Florence Pugh and Eliza Scanlen, with Timothée Chalamet as their neighbor Laurie, Laura Dern as Marmee and Meryl Streep as Aunt March.

In addition to earning the praise of critics worldwide with a Rotten Tomatoes “Certified Fresh” rating of 95%, the film has been honored with an Academy Award for Best Costume Design plus five nominations including Best Picture, Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay), and Best Music (Original Score). Saoirse Ronan’s transcendent performance earned her a nomination for Best Actress in a Leading Role, while Florence Pugh’s nuanced and insightful take on the character of Amy earned her a nod for Best Actress in a Supporting Role. LITTLE WOMEN is only the third Best Picture nominee in history to have been written, directed and produced entirely by female filmmakers.

LITTLE WOMEN has a runtime of approximately 135 minutes and is rated PG for some thematic elements and brief smoking.

BLU-RAY, DVD AND DIGITAL BONUS MATERIALS

  • A New Generation of Little Women: The superb cast recreated the beloved world of the March family with realism, humor and vulnerability
  • Making a Modern Classic: The film combines its modern elements—kinetic camerawork and overlapping dialogue—with the historically authentic bespoke costumes, sets and locations
  • Greta Gerwig: Women Making Art: Go behind the camera with Writer/Director Greta Gerwig, discover her process and how she applied her own style to the story
  • Hair & Make-Up Test Sequence: A lovely showcase featuring the outstanding costumes, hair and make-up crafted for the film
  • Little Women Behind the Scenes: Take a quick look behind the scenes on the set of LITTLE WOMEN
  • Orchard House, Home of Louisa May Alcott: Find out more about Louisa May Alcott and visit the real-life Orchard House in Concord, MA

CAST AND CREW
Director: Greta Gerwig
Written By: Greta Gerwig (based on the novel by Louisa May Alcott)
Producers: Amy Pascal, Denise Di Novi, Robin Swicord
Executive Producers: Adam Merims, Evelyn O’Neill, Rachel O’Connor, Arnon Milchan
Cast: Saoirse Ronan (Ladybird), Emma Watson (Beauty and the Beast), Florence Pugh (Midsommar), Eliza Scanlen (TV’s “Sharp Objects”), Laura Dern (TV’s “Big Little Lies”), Timothée Chalamet (Call Me by Your Name) with Chris Cooper (A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood) and Meryl Streep (The Post)

SPECS
Blu-ray: Feature: 1080p High Definition 1.85:1 | Audio: 5.1 DTS-HD MA
DVD: Feature: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen | Audio: English 5.1 Dolby Digital

REVIEW

REVIEW: Parasite

REVIEWParasite has been the critical darling since its unanimous win of the coveted Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival, and this weekend took a Best Screenplay award while it stands a chance at winning the Best Foreign Film award at the Oscars. It has also been nominated or including Best Picture and Best Director.

I don’t get the fuss.

The film, out now on disc from Universal Home Entertainment, is a South Korean production cowritren, co-produced, and directed by Bong Joon-ho. While it appears on the surface to be a story about a low-income family struggling to survive, it addresses class distinctions and demonstrates the lengths to which people will go in order to live. Apparently, the parents, Ki-taek (Song Kang-ho), and Chung-sook (Chang Hyae-jin), and their teen children Ki-woo (Choi Woo-shik) and Ki-jeong (Park So-dam), go from temporary job to temporary job, barely able to cover food and rent. We see them ineptly folding boxes for a pizza restaurant, reflecting their haphazard approach to improving their situation.

Providence arrives in the form of Ki-woo’s friend, who is about to study abroad and tells him to be his replacement as English tutor to sophomore student Da-hye (Jeong Ji-so), eldest child to a wealthy family. No sooner does Ki-woo get the job then he and his sister launch a plot for the entire clan to infiltrate the upscale home, each taking over a job and pretending not to be related to one another.

In surprisingly short order, the plan works and all four now serve as tutors, driver, and housekeeper for Mr. Park (Lee Sun-kyun) and his seemingly clueless wife Mrs. Park (Cho Yeo-jeong). The daughter is a gifted artist but cynically suggests the youngest child, Da-song (Jung Hyeon-jun) needs expensive Art Therapy, which she would happily provide.

Rather than explore the class differences and the interactions between counterparts, Joon-ho can’t make up his mind as to what tone to strike. The family, once desperate, become sarcastic, displaying their poor manners and taking full advantage of the Parks’ largesse rather than cultivate their roles to ensure longevity. While Mr. Park opens up a bit about his wife’s shortcomings, Mrs. Park offers nothing but effervescence and Ki-woo’s romance of someone far younger is just icky. About the only thing the Parks find odd is a certain odor from the newly hired quarter, something the son notices first and then bothers Mr. Park. While the family recognizes the need to change soaps for each, they never seem to do so since the odor, a metaphor made manifest, remains a plot point.

As if he ran out of material, halfway through the film briefly becomes a farce as we learn the previous housekeeper has been hiding her husband in the hidden underground bunker. She begs Chung-sook to keep their secret and keep feeding the man, who apparently is being hunted by loan sharks for unpaid debts. When the impostors are revealed, things threaten to spiral out of control.

Events build with less logic in each passing scene, such as a rainstorm that backs up the sewers, ruining the impostor’s apartment, climaxing at an impromptu garden party where farce gives way to thriller and violence replaces plot. Some revelations are preposterous with an over-reliance on Morse Code.

What should have been everything the critics said Parasite was, this is a poorly plotted, underwritten and flatly performed production that doesn’t deserve the heaps of praise it has garnered. Decide for yourself.

The film’s digital production means the resolution of 6.5K and finished at 4K looks stunning in 1080p. It is evenly matched with the DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 lossless soundtrack, which comes in Korean, requiring you to use English subtitles.

For a film that’s a critics’ darling, the sole special feature offered is Parasite — Fantastic Fest 2019 Q&A with Joon Ho (19:03), nowhere near enough to explain what was on his mind.

All-New Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge Video hits in April

All-New Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge Video hits in April

BURBANK, CA (January 30, 2020) – One of the most popular videogame franchises in history comes to animated life in Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge, an all-new, feature-length film produced by Warner Bros. Animation in coordination with NeatherRealm Studios and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. The film arrives from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment on Digital starting April 12, 2020, and on 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD on April 28, 2020.

Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge will be available on 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack (USA $39.99 SRP; Canada $44.98 SRP), Blu-ray Combo Pack (USA $24.98 SRP; Canada $29.98 SRP), and DVD (USA $19.98 SRP: Canada $24.98 SRP) as well as on Digital. The 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack features an Ultra HD Blu-ray disc in 4K with HDR, a Blu-ray disc featuring the film in hi-definition, and a digital version of the movie. The Blu-ray Combo Pack features a Blu-ray disc with the film in hi-definition, a DVD with the film in standard definition, and a digital version of the movie.

Based on the worldwide hit game created by Ed Boon & John Tobias, Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge spotlights the once-in-a-generation tournament between the champions of Outworld and Earthrealm – a competition that will ultimately determine the fate of Earth and all its citizens. Lord Raiden, protector of Earthrealm, must gather the greatest fighters of his realm to defend it from the evil Shang Tsung in the battle to end all battles – Mortal Kombat!

Joel McHale (Community, The CW’s upcoming Stargirl) and Jennifer Carpenter (Dexter, Batman: Gotham by Gaslight) lead a stellar cast as the voices of Hollywood star-turned-fighter Johnny Cage and all-business warrior Sonya Blade, respectively. The voice cast also includes Jordan Rodrigues (Lady Bird, The Fosters) as Liu Kang, Patrick Seitz (Mortal Kombat X, Agrretsuko, Naruto: Shippuden) as Scorpion & Hanzo Hasashi, Steve Blum (Cowboy Bebop, Star Wars Rebels) as Sub-Zero, Artt Butler (Her, Star Wars: The Clone Wars) as Shang Tsung, Darin De Paul (Overwatch, Fortnite) as Quan Chi, Robin Atkin Downes (The Strain, Batman: The Killing Joke) as Kano, David B. Mitchell (Mortal Kombat 11, World of Warcraft franchise) as Raiden, Ike Amadi (Mass Effect 3, Mortal Kombat 11) as Jax Briggs, Kevin Michael Richardson (Family Guy, The Simpsons) as Goro, Grey Griffin (The Loud House, Young Justice, Scooby-Doo franchise) as Kitana & Satoshi Hasashi, and Fred Tatasciore (Robot Chicken, Family Guy) as Demon Torturer.

Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge is directed by Ethan Spaulding (Batman: Assault on Arkham, Justice League: Throne of Atlantis) from a script by Jeremy Adams (Supernatural, Teen Titans Go! Vs. Teen Titans) based on the videogame created by Ed Boon and John Tobias. Rick Morales (Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders, Batman vs. Two-Face) is Producer, and Jim Krieg (Batman: Gotham by Gaslight) is co-producer. Executive Producer is Sam Register. Ed Boon (NetherRealm Studios) is Creative Consultant.

Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge is a riveting, no-holds-barred action-fest that delivers all the authentic combat, drama and humor fans expect coupled with edgy animation and an outstanding voice cast,” said Mary Ellen Thomas, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Senior Vice President, Originals, Animation, and Family Marketing. “This film is unlike anything Warner Bros. has produced before, and fans should be prepared for the thrill ride of their lives.”

Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge Special Features

4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack, and Digital

  • From Epic Game to Extreme Animation – Mortal Kombat co-creator Ed Boon and the filmmakers reveal the creative process behind adapting the best-selling game to an all-new animated film.
  • The Weapons, Wardrobe, and World of Mortal Kombat Legends – The artists reveal the design challenges of animating the world of Mortal Kombat, from authentic armor to wildly imaginative weapons and fantasy settings.
  • The Savage Sound Design of Mortal Kombat Legends – This hard-hitting audio exploration reveals the art of designing the sonic language of the fight scenes.
  • Mortal Kombatants – Dive deep inside the cast of characters to reveal their unique abilities, signature moves and backstories.
  • Filmmaker Commentary – Producer Rick Morales and screenwriter Jeremy Adams sit down for an insightful audio commentary that reveals the process of creating a compelling animated film based on one of today’s most popular fighting games.

Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge will also be available on Movies Anywhere. Using the free Movies Anywhere app and website, consumers can access all their eligible movies by connecting their Movies Anywhere account with their participating digital retailer accounts.

BASICS

4K Blu-ray Languages: English, Spanish, French

4K Blu-ray Subtitles: English, Spanish, French

Blu-ray Languages: English, Spanish, French, German

Blu-ray Subtitles: English, Spanish, French

DVD Languages: English, Spanish, French, Portuguese

DVD Subtitles: English, Spanish, French, Portuguese

Running Time: 80 minutes

REVIEW

Win a Copy of Parasite Blu-ray & HD Digital Bundle

REVIEWThe South Korean film Parasite seemingly came out of nowhere and has become a surprise hit, garnering six Academy Award nominations after winning the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Film. Better, it began a dialogue about classes and stereotypes that continues until today.

The film has been out digitally and hits physical discs tomorrow. Our friends at Universal Home Entertainment have made a copy of the Blu-ray and Digital HD bundle available for giveaway.

In order to win, please tell us about a time when you felt your life suddenly being taken over by forces beyond your comprehension.

Your entry has to be submitted no later than 11:59 p.m., Friday, January 31. The decision of the ComicMix judges will be final. The contest is open only to North American readers.

Proclaimed as “wickedly clever” (GQ) and “the definition of a must-see experience” (The Atlantic), PARASITE is a riveting, genre-bending thriller that combines masterful filmmaking with a fresh look at class discrimination, making it “a flat-out masterpiece” (Deadline). Hailed as “the best work yet from master filmmaker Bong Joon Ho (Okja, Snowpiercer)” (AwardsCircuit), who directed and co-wrote the film alongside Han Jin Won (Okja), fans can now delve deep into the mind of Bong, and the symbolism behind PARASITE with an exclusive Q&A bonus feature with the acclaimed director. The captivating PARASITE has made history as the first Korean film to be nominated for an Oscar®. It has garnered six Oscar® nominations including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, Best International Film, Best Production Design, and Best Editing, a 2020 SAG Award®nomination for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture and was the winner of the 2020 Golden Globe®for Best Foreign Film. Additionally, the film has racked up over an astonishing 100award nominations to date.

BLU-RAYTM, DVD & DIGITAL BONUS FEATURES:

Q&A with Director Bong Joon HoPARASITEwill be available on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital. Blu-ray unleashes the power of your HDTV and is the best way to watch movies at home, featuring 6X the picture resolution of DVD, exclusive extras and theater-quality surround sound.

Digital lets fans watch movies anywhere on their favorite devices. Users can instantly stream or download.

MOVIES ANYWHERE is the digital app that simplifies and enhances the digital movie collection and viewing experience by allowing consumers to access their favorite digital movies in one place when purchased or redeemed through participating digital retailers. Consumers can also redeem digital copy codes found in eligible Blu-ray and DVD disc packages from participating studios and stream or download them through Movies Anywhere. MOVIES ANYWHERE is only available in the United States.

Surprise Hit Knives Out Comes to Disc in Febraury

Surprise Hit Knives Out Comes to Disc in Febraury

SANTA MONICA, CA (January 22, 2020) – Rian Johnson’s Academy Award®-nominated (Best Original Screenplay) and Golden Globe®-nominated (Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy [Ana de Armas], Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy [Daniel Craig]) whodunnit with an all-star ensemble cast exposes its secrets when Knives Out arrives on Digital February 7 and on 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack (plus Blu-ray and Digital), Blu-ray Combo Pack (plus DVD and Digital), DVD, and On Demand February 25 from Lionsgate and MRC Film.

Written, produced, and directed by filmmaker Rian Johnson (Star Wars: The Last JediLooper), and produced by Ram Bergman (Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Looper) and Johnson through T-Street, the film is Certified Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes™ at 97% (as of 1/21/20) and has received awards from AFI, National Board of Review, New York Film Critics, Philadelphia Film Festival, The Hollywood Critics Association, Rotten Tomatoes’ Golden Tomatoes Awards, and more. Knives Out stars Daniel Craig (James Bond franchise, Logan LuckyThe Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Chris Evans (The Avengers franchise, Captain AmericaGifted), Ana de Armas (Blade Runner 2049War DogsKnock Knock), Golden Globe® winner Jamie Lee Curtis (1990, Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy, “Anything But Love”), Oscar® nominee Michael Shannon (2008, Actor in a Supporting Role, Revolutionary Road), Golden Globe® winner and Emmy® nominee Don Johnson (1986, Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Drama, Miami Vice; 1985, Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, Miami Vice), Oscar® nominee and Golden Globe® winner Toni Collette (1999, Actress in a Supporting Role, The Sixth Sense; 2010, Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy, United States of Tara), LaKeith Stanfield (Sorry to Bother You, Get Out, Atlanta), Golden Globe® nominee Katherine Langford (2018, Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Drama, 13 Reasons Why), Jaeden Martell (ItIt: Chapter 2St. VincentThe Book of Henry), and Oscar®, Tony Award®, and Emmy® winner Christopher Plummer (2011, Actor in a Supporting Role, Beginners; 1974, Actor (Musical), Cyrano; 1997, Actor (Play), Barrymore; 1977, Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series, The Moneychangers NBC World Premiere The Big Event; 1994, Outstanding Voice-Over Performance, Madeline). Adored by audiences and critics alike, Knives Out is full of mystery, suspense, humor, and incredible performances from a star-studded ensemble cast.

The circumstances surrounding the death of crime novelist Harlan Thrombey are mysterious, but there’s one thing that renowned Detective Benoit Blanc knows for sure—everyone in the wildly dysfunctional Thrombey family is a suspect. Now, Blanc must sift through a web of lies and red herrings to uncover the truth. From acclaimed writer-director Rian Johnson comes this suspenseful, twist-filled whodunnit with an all-star ensemble cast including Daniel Craig, Chris Evans, Ana de Armas, Jamie Lee Curtis, Michael Shannon, Don Johnson, Toni Collette, LaKeith Stanfield, Katherine Langford, Jaeden Martell, Christopher Plummer, and more.

Take home Knives Out and immerse yourself in the mystery with special features including audio commentary and in-theatre commentary by filmmaker Rian Johnson, two never-before-seen deleted scenes, the eight-part “Making a Murder” documentary, the “Rian Johnson: Planning the Perfect Murder” featurette, a Q&A with the director and cast, and so much more. Experience four times the resolution of full HD with the 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack, which includes Dolby Vision, bringing entertainment to life through ultra-vivid picture quality. When compared to a standard picture, Dolby Vision can deliver spectacular colors never before seen on a screen, highlights that are up to 40 times brighter, and blacks that are 10 times darker. Additionally, the 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack features Dolby Atmos, which will transport viewers from an ordinary moment into an extraordinary experience with moving audio that flows all around them. Fans will feel like they’re inside the action as the sounds of people, places, things, and music come alive with breathtaking realism and move throughout the space.

The Knives Out 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack, and DVD will be available for the suggested retail price of $42.99, $39.99, and $29.95, respectively.

4K UHD / BLU-RAY / DVD / DIGITAL SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Audio Commentary by Writer-Director Rian Johnson, Director of Photography Steve Yedlin, and Actor Noah Segan
  • In-Theatre Commentary by Rian Johnson
  • Deleted Scene: “Bicycling Accident” (with Optional Audio Commentary by Rian Johnson)
  • Deleted Scene: “Don’t Do Anything Rash” (with Optional Audio Commentary by Rian Johnson)
  • “Making a Murder” Eight-Part Documentary
  • “Rian Johnson: Planning the Perfect Murder” Featurette
  • Writer-Director and Cast Q&A
  • Marketing Gallery
  • “Meet the Thrombeys” Viral Ads
A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood Moves in Feb. 4

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood Moves in Feb. 4

CULVER CITY, CALIF. (January 22, 2019) – Put on your comfiest cardigan and spend some quality time with Academy Award®-winner Tom Hanks when he takes on the role of a lifetime as childhood icon and broadcast legend Fred Rogers in A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, coming to digital February 4 and 4K Ultra HD™, Blu-ray™ and DVD February 18 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

The 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, DVD and digital releases are loaded with bonus features sure to please both longtime fans of Mister Rogers and newcomers to the Land of Make-Believe, including over 15 minutes of additional scenes, an adorable blooper reel, an all-new featurette starring Daniel Tiger, filmmaker commentary and a behind-the-scenes look at the work that went into bringing this heartwarming and inspiring story to life.

Tom Hanks portrays Mister Rogers in A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, a timely story of kindness triumphing over cynicism, based on the true story of a real-life friendship between Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod. After a jaded magazine writer (Primetime Emmy® Award-winner Matthew Rhys) is assigned a profile of Fred Rogers, he overcomes his skepticism, learning about kindness, love, and forgiveness from America’s most beloved neighbor.

“Hanks is amazing” in the role that has earned him an Oscar® nomination for Actor in a Supporting Role—his sixth career Academy Award Nomination. He stars alongside Rhys, Screen Actors Guild Award®-winner Susan Kelechi Watson and Oscar®-winner Chris Cooper under the direction of acclaimed filmmaker Marielle Heller (Can You Ever Forgive Me?The Diary of a Teenage Girl).

The film has achieved nearly universal praise, earning the designation of “Certified Fresh” from RottenTomatoes.com and receiving raves from critics, including Rolling Stone’s Pete Travers, who calls A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD “irresistible,” Pete Hammond of Deadline who says it’s “the movie we need right now” and FOX-TV’s Jake Hamilton who calls it “the most heartfelt and uplifting film of the year.”

A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD has a runtime of approximately 109 minutes and is rated PG for some strong thematic material, a brief fight and some mild language.

4K ULTRA HD, BLU-RAY, DVD AND DIGITAL BONUS MATERIALS

  • Over 15 Minutes of Additional Scenes
  • Blooper Reel
  • Tom Hanks as Fred Rogers
  • The People Who Make a Neighborhood: The Making Of
  • Dreaming Big, Building Small: The Puppets & Miniatures
  • Daniel Tiger Explains: Practice Makes Perfect
  • Filmmaker Commentary

CAST AND CREW
Director: Marielle Heller
Written By: Micah Fitzerman-Blue & Noah Harpster
Producers: Youree Henley, Peter Saraf, Marc Turtletaub, Leah Holzer
Executive Producers: Bergen Swanson, Noah Harpster, Micah Fitzerman-Blue, Edward Cheng, Howard Chen
Cast: Tom Hanks (Cast Away), Matthew Rhys (The Americans), Susan Kelechi Watson (This is Us) and Chris Cooper (Little Women)

SPECS
4K Ultra HD: Feature: 2160p Ultra High Definition 1.85:1 | Audio: 12.1 DST:X MA
The IMAX® Enhanced 4K Ultra HD™ edition features digitally remastered content presented with High Dynamic Range and DTS:X® audio for a more immersive at-home entertainment experience.
Blu-ray: Feature: 1080p High Definition 1.85:1 | Audio: 5.1 DTS-HD MA
DVD: Feature: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen | Audio: 5.1 Dolby Digital