Welcome to Home Again, where each and every Tuesday I’ll be running down some of the best genre releases coming to home media. In general I won’t be covering 4K because I find the format overrated, but if it’s new and happens to have some kind of edition feature I might mention it.
All info is from the excellent Blu-ray.com. This isn’t every genre release, just the ones I find interesting. For the full list, follow that link.
The Critters Collection (1986-1992) – Shout Factory – One of the great monster franchises of the 80s, the four Critters films also sit in the tri-genre sweet spot of horror, sci-fi, and comedy. I don’t think I could refer to the series as “forgotten”, but it certainly doesn’t have the same name value as some of the other 80s horror franchises.
I preordered this set as soon as Shout Factory offered it, so it arrived last week. It’s super nice and well worth your money, whether you’ve seen the movies or not.
Zombie (1979) aka Zombi 2/Zombie Flesh Eaters 4K Remaster – Blue Underground – I’m not sure there’s a better movie to introduce viewers to Italian horror than Lucio Fulci’s Zombie. It was the first Italian horror film I watched and it introduced me to a whole new horror aesthetic while still being broad enough to keep my attention.
The film is long overdue for a fancy-pants release. This 4K remaster is being offered with three different covers – the well-known maggot zombie, zombies on a bridge, and a still of one of the most famous horror scenes of all time, simply titled “Splinter”.
Sharp Objects (2018) – HBO – We’re close enough to the end of the year for me to feel comfortable saying that Sharp Objects featured the best performances of 2018; on TV or in film. It’s also one of the best-looking and sounding releases of the year. The way the creators used every aspect of the medium is absolutely phenomenal.
I’ll publicly repeat something I said in a FB message here, because I still feel this way:
“Watching Amy Adams performance in Sharp Objects sort of makes me understand people who get mad about the DC movies. She is so unbelievably good in this that it actually makes me a little angry that she’s utilized so poorly as Lois Lane. Literally anyone could have played that role and she could have been doing much better things. But good for her for the payday, I guess.”
In a bit of fuckery from HBO, the physical media release is lacking two of the special features from the digital release.
Munchies/Munchie (1987/1992) – Shout Factory – The first movie is a shameless and admitted ripoff of Gremlins, directed by that film’s editor. There are two (apparently unrelated?) sequels, but only one is included here.
I watched Munchies in the 80s because when you’re a pre-teen, burgeoning horror fan you watch anything with little monsters in it (except, apparently, Little Monsters). It’s trash and I recognized it for what it was even as a kid.
Atomic Blonde (2017) 4K Best Buy Exclusive Steelbook – Universal Studios – The movie itself is a great, retro-style spy flick, but it’s Charlize Theron’s portrayal of a beat up, world-weary James Bond-type that puts it over the top. Atomic Blonde delivered exactly what I wanted, and in our cynical age of deceptive trailers and marketing that aims different messages at different demographics for the same product, what you get isn’t always what you expected. This one delivered well enough that I’ll be happy to throw down the cash for a nifty Steelbook and a 4K upgrade.
Big Action Dude Multi-Film Sets (198?-199?) – Echo Bridge Entertainment – Multi-film collections featuring Steven Segal, Nicolas Cage, and Wesley Snipes are hitting today. This sort of thing happens every year around the holidays, but the sets aren’t always focused on such extraordinary personalities. As of this writing I couldn’t find details online about which films are included on each of these releases, but keep your eyes out for that special action fan in your life.
For example, if you need to buy a Christmas gift for friend of the show and Casket Creatures guitar person Kevin Slayfield, that Segal set is sure to impress.
Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey (1991) Steelbook – Shout Factory – If you skipped Shout Factory’s two-pack with included NECA figures, you might prefer this fancy-pants steelbook release.
The Morricone Duel: The Most Dangerous Concert Ever (2017) – EUROARTS – The Danish National Symphony Orchestra conducted by Sarah Hicks performs a selection of the legendary Ennio Morricone’s signature pieces, as well as music from Bernard Herrmann (Taxi Driver), Sonny Bono (Kill Bill), and Nino Rota (The Godfather).
Elvis Presley – ’68 Comeback Special – 50th Anniversary Edition (1968) – Sony Music – I’d wager that folks who might not be die-hard Elvis fans will recognize the term “’68 Comeback Special”, even if they don’t necessarily know what it means.
On December 3rd, 1968, NBC broadcast the King’s “return” to performing music after nearly a decade of being primarily a film star.
This box set includes an 80-page book, five CDs, and two Blu-rays, and two LPs of The King in the Ring that collect basically everything that ever happened related to this momentous television event. The $100+ price tag may seem steep for a single event, but there’s so much stuff here that I think it’s justified.
Check back next week for more horror, sci-fi, and whatever else grabs my attention!
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