Welcome to Home Again, where each and every Tuesday I’ll be running down some of the best genre releases coming to home media.
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 Thing from Another World (1951) – Warner Bros. – Before John Carpenter created his masterpiece, The Thing, this Howard Hawks film adapted the novella Who Goes There?
I know that I’ve seen this twice – once when I was very young and didn’t know what it was, and once when I was older; after I had seen Carpenter’s version. I remember it being scary the first time and boring the second, but now that I’ve got some perspective and a different kind of appreciation for older movies I’d like to revisit it.
This was previously an Amazon exclusive, but as of today should be available anywhere that carries Warner Archive releases. Which, uh, is pretty much just Amazon. Maybe Barnes & Noble.
Popcorn (1991) Collector’s Edition Steelbook – Synapse Films – This is an excellent horror flick that plays with the tropes of the genre in plenty of fun ways. If you haven’t seen it, you need to. But maybe not this forty dollar Steelbook version. Personally I’ll be sticking with the Synapse Blu-ray from a couple of years ago.
Apparently this is a second run of the Steelbook version from 2017. Otherwise I don’t see anything new.
Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) – 20th Century Fox – Maybe you guys can help me with something.
While I’ve been hearing unflattering things about Bryan Singer for years, I have only recently read the details of the allegations against him and become aware of just how horrifying the situation is. Now, obviously I don’t know the facts, but if it walks like a pedophile and talks like a pedophile, it’s probably a pedophile. The testimony is that Bryan Singer has actively corrupted and raped children and the allegations are that this has happened many times since the filming of Apt Pupil, if not prior to that.
This all bothers me a lot. Like, I don’t want to watch The Usual Suspects or Singer’s X-Men movies. Or Superman Returns, but nobody wants to watch that.
In a similar situation, I threw out my copies of the Jeepers Creepers movies after finding out similar things about the creator of that franchise, convicted pedophile Victor Salva. I dug the heck out of those first two movies, but I can’t deal with that.
As we’ve been discovering – or having confirmed – lately, Hollywood is a dirty place. If you’re a saint, there aren’t too many things you can enjoy and keep a clean conscience. I’m no saint and can overlook a lot of bad behavior, but child rape is one I can’t get past.
I realize a lot more people than Bryan Singer worked on this and his other movies, but for some reason I can’t get past this. I can’t rationalize it and I can’t get it out of my head. Heck, Singer was even fired from the film, but I can’t stop thinking of anything he had a major creative voice on to be tainted.
I know there’s some hypocrisy involved here, as I’m picking and choosing which sins to be offended by, but I would hope that anyone could get behind this particular issue.
Should I be this put off or was Singer simply a part of the process? I don’t know what the answer is and I’d love for you guys to ease my distaste enough for me to watch this one. By all accounts – including our buddy Jason’s – it’s a great film.
There are several different editions available, including a Best Buy 4K Steelbook that looks beautiful, a Target DigiBook, and your standard 4K/Blu-ray releases.
Valentine (2001) – Shout Factory – You might not even remember this film, and if you do you might not have seen it. You also might not recall that it’s actually pretty darn good.
The story is exactly what you’d expect it to be, but the cast is fun and there are some inventive kills. Plus, David Boreanaz is just a dreamboat.
Fright Night (1985) – Sony Pictures – I’m glad to see this on Blu-ray and all, but I can’t help but feel like this classic deserves a nice Shout Factory release.
Horror Express (1972) – Arrow – Starring Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, and Telly Savalas, this monster-on-a-train flick (oh, another one of those) doesn’t have a great reputation, but I’m going to call it a must-watch for the stars alone. Lord knows each of those guys have some stinkers on their resumes, so perhaps their combined might is enough to make this one not too bad.
Audition (1999) – Arrow – When I first discovered Takashi Miike twelve or so years ago it was one of the greatest cinematic revelations of my life. The man is a batshit crazy genius and also the hardest worker on the planet. You don’t even know what “hustle” means until you look at Miike’s filmography.
But it doesn’t stop there – lots of people have made shit-tons of movies. Every one of Miike’s that I have seen is good or entertaining in some way. They’re all very different and span every genre from horror to fantasy to musical, but they all have his heart and soul in them. Some, like Audition, are genuinely great.
This is a movie that I watched once, appreciated, and will likely not ever watch again. It’s truly disturbing in many different ways. While perfectly executed by Miike and by the cast, it’s a little too effed up for 42-year-old me.
The Poison Ivy Collection (1992-2008) – Shout Factory – I used to work at Suncoast Video way back when. This is the sort of title that we’d get in and know exactly who’d be buying it.
TRIGGER WARNING: I am about to utilize a humorous but true stereotype. If you are an obese, balding, middle-aged creep with visibly moist skin please do not take offense. Obviously I am not talking about you.
There was this group of five or six obese, balding, middle-aged creeps with visibly moist skin who always knew when the sexploitation thriller movies were coming in. They knew because they had them preordered. Stacks and stacks of softcore Cinemax-grade porn and stuff like this. They’d come in, get their stacks, and head home to… you know.
And look – everyone… you know. Or at least, they should, but these guys just made everything they did seem dirty. I think it might be the fact that they had no shame about buying all of this stuff. At least act like you don’t want us all knowing what you’re doing, you know?
The biggest surprise here is that there’s even a Poison Ivy collection to be had. I saw the first one because it was actually a legitimate movie and part of the wave of thrillers that replaced horror movies in the late 80s/early 90s. The second one had Alyssa Milano in it and I’ve seen every movie with Alyssa Milano in it. But I had no idea there were two more.
The Haunted Castle/The Finances of the Grand Duke (1921/1924) – Kino Lorber – A set of two films by F.W. Murnau, director of the 1922 Nosferatu. I am not familiar with either, but I’m up for watching them.
Nightflyers Season One (2018) – Universal Studios – I was very excited for this. George R.R. Martin writing about space vampires seemed like a sure thing. But I missed the premiere, saw a review that successfully conveyed mediocrity, and sort of forgot about it. If it’s on demand I might give it a shot at some point, but there’s so much other good stuff on now – and coming soon – that I bet I won’t find the time.
Did any of you watch? Is it any good?
Rick and Morty Seasons 1-3 (2013-2017) – Warner Bros. – Try to ignore the loud assholes. This is actually an excellent show and well worth your time. I didn’t bother with it until after the second season wrapped up because I had made assumptions based on the most vocal fans. But those guys are dicks and this show is great. Me and the missus have both watched each season several times. I’ll buy this.
The Conjuring Universe Collection (2013-2018) – Warner Bros. – Both of the Conjuring movies and The Nun are great. As a matter of fact, I can’t wait to watch the latter again. I didn’t care for either of the Annabelle movies, though. For less than forty bucks you can get three very good movies and two not-so-great movies and that’s not a bad deal.
Haunted Hospital: Heilstätten (2018) – Well Go USA – My feeling that this is going to be garbage is overwhelmed by my desire to see YouTubers slaughtered in various ways. I will be watching this one.
And no – it is not at all fair for me to suggest that this might be anything but good. It’s about a group of YouTubers (shudder) that break into the surgery block of a hospital near Berlin in hopes of going viral with their daffy shenanigans. It could be great.
The Appearance (2018) – Gravitas Ventures – I mention this because the cover is neat:
And because I like movies about religious people investigating supernatural stuff.
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