Saturday, February 16, 2019

OVERLORD (2018) (4K UltraHD Review)


Label: Paramount Pictures 
Region Code: Region-FREE
Rating: R
Duration: 109 Minutes 
Audio: Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD 7.1 with Optional English Subtitles 
Video: 2160 4K UltraHD Widescreen (2.40:1), 1080p HD Widescreen (2.40:1)  
Director:  Julius Avery
Cast: Pilou Asbaek, John Magaro, Wyatt Russell

World War II horror-fantasy film Overlord (2018) opens hours before the D-Day invasion in '44, with a paratrooper squad being sent into Nazi occupied France to destroy a strategic communications tower located in an old church. Flying in the aircraft comes under heavy ground artillery fire, the opening scene is a pumped-up thrill ride with scenes of the aircraft being strafed with gunfire and blowing up in the sky, there's fireballs, shrapnel and blood flying everywhere. 

When all is said and done only four of the squad remain alive on the ground, we have Private First Class Ed Boyce (Jovan Adepo, The Leftovers), Private Morton Chase (Iain De Caestecker, Lost River), Corporal Ford (Wyatt Russell), Private First Class Frank Tibbe (John Magaro, Orange Is The New Black), all landing off target, regrouping and making their way towards the small village where their target is located. Along the way they meet a French woman named Chloe (Mathilde Ollivier) from that village who agrees to help them. She sneaks them into her home where she lives with her younger brother Paul (Gianny Taufer) and her aunt who seems to have been the victim of Nazi experiments, she's heard wheezing heavily from her attic bedroom, seen only partially through a door, mutated and strangely disfigured, foreshadowing where the film is headed. 

While the soldiers are hiding in the attic planning their next move the home is visited upon by a Nazi patrol lead by Captain Wafner (Pilou Asbæk, Game Of Thrones) who attempts to rape Chloe, but he is stopped and captured by the American soldiers who brutally interrogate him, before launching an offensive on the Church tower. What they discover inside is beyond their wildest nightmares, an underground labyrinth of labs where Nazi scientist Dr. Schmidt (Erich Redman, Captain America: The First Avenger) 
carries out experiments on French villagers aimed at creating an unstoppable Nazi super soldiers, adding a layer of fantasy-horror to this grim and gritty WW2 actioner!

Overlord (2018) was a fun watch, I dig Third Reich horror films, we don't see many big-budget versions of this sort of thing, and this is a solid bit of WW2 Nazi super-soldier horror, though it was hard for the film to live up to that amped-up opening scene of the paratroopers flying into France, a scene that totally brought to mind the "B-17" segment from the animated anthology film Heavy Metal (1981)

Jovan Adepo is solid here in what amounts to lead status, the well-meaning good guy who must find his inner hero in the face of Nazi awfulness. The big surprise here for me was a mean-spirited turn from Wyatt Russell as Corp. Ford. He's an I mostly know from Everybody Wants Some (2016) and the TV show Lodge 49 as dippy SoCal dude "Dud", a kind soul. But here he's a total hard-ass, an American soldier who's not above torturing some Nazis to get some solid intel, I was shocked to see him be so scary, it's a side of him I haven't seen till now. 

The film starts of with a bang, the opening stuff is an overwhelming mix action and violence, then settles into a bit of a sluggish middle section before once again turning up the dial with a final stretch that lives up to the intro with all sorts of gory Nazi weirdness and WW2 action. The special effects are a good mix of practical and digital, all of it pretty damn good looking, it looks like they used the digital to enhance the practical stuff, thankfully not looking like a cut scene from a damn video game. 

Overlord is a pulpy slice of WW2 fantasy horror, we get just enough non-fiction to anchor the film's wild ride of Nazi experimentation and super soldier serum gone wrong lunacy. There's not much depth of character being developed here, and the film doesn't need it, it's all superficial fun, and I'm down with that. Nazi are bad, we root for the American good guys, everything else is just gory, action-packed WW2 carnage - hell yeah!

Audio/Video: Overlord (2018) arrives on 2160 4K UltraHD framed in (2.40:1)widescreen from Paramount Pictures. The 4K looks awesome, the colors are a bit on the muted side with a lot of earth tones, bit on occasion reds and greens get occasion to shine. The digitally shot film is crisp and well resolved, scenes of fireballs lighting up the night sky look pretty darn spiffy, and when the gore arrives it looks wonderfully detailed and gross. Fine detail looks impressive in the close-ups throughout, and blacks are generally very deep and inky. 

The Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1) audio is an auditory thrill ride throughout, from the opening scenes of plane engines roaring in the night sky with strafing gun fire and shrapnel bouncing around the fuselage, it's exquisite stuff. It's not all bombast though, there's some nice atmospheric use of the surrounds in the quieter and creepier moments that help the film get under your skin, this is one of the more impressive audio experiences I've has with 4K, very impressive and wall rattling stuff! The score from Jed Kurzel (The Babadook) is also terrific and well represented in the mix with a robust and powerful presence, optional English subtitles are provided.

Looking at the extras listed on the box it doesn't look like a lot, but the one extras is actually a six-part documentary coming in at about 51-min that goes in-depth into the making of the film. This extra is on the Blu-ray disc, the best stuff for me was the dissection of the thrilling opening scene and a look at the special effects and creature design. 

The 2-disc release comes housed in a black 4K keepcase with a one-sided sleeve of artwork, inside you will find the 4K and Blu-ray discs as well as the digital redemption code for the film. This release also includes a slipcover with the same key art on the front and back. 

Overlord (2018) is a wild ride of Nazi strangeness, coming in somewhere along the lines of Re-Animator (1985) by way of Frankenstein's Army (2013), a bad-ass slice of pulpy WW2 horror fantasy that looks and sounds impressive on 4K UltraHD, highly recommended!

Monday, February 11, 2019

ALL THE COLORS OF GIALLO (2018) (Severin Films Blu-ray Review)


Label: Severin Films
Regin Code: Region-FREE
Rating: Unrated
Duration: 239 Minutes
Audio: English, Italian DTS-HD MA 2.0 with English Subtitles 

Video: 1080p HD Widescreen
Director: Federico Caddeo

Synopsis: ‘Giallo’ is Italian for ‘yellow’, the color of the lurid pulp novels that inspired one of the most intense, extreme and influential genres in movie history. In this unprecedented collection, experience the full chronological evolution of giallo with more than 100 rare and classic trailers from such masters as Mario Bava, Dario Argento, Lucio Fulci, Sergio Martino, Antonio Margheriti, Umberto Lenzi and many more. Then slip on black leather gloves and set the mood with a Bonus CD of legendary soundtrack music from composers that include Ennio Morricone, Riz Ortolani, Bruno Nicolai, Stelvio Cipriani and others, along with all-new featurettes that thrust even deeper into the genre. “But be warned,” says, “once you start going down the blood-slicked giallo rabbit hole, you may become dangerously obsessed.”

The first disc in this three-disc set is the Blu-ray containing the 'All The Colors of Giaillo' documentary directed by Federico Caddeo. The genre-defining doc has interviews with many of the taste makers who made this stylish genre what it is, we get interviews from directors Fabio Melelli, Lamberto Bava, Sergio Martino, Dario Argento, Lucio Fulci, Luciano Ercoli, and Umberto Lenzi, stars Daria Nicolodi, George Hilton, Barbara Bouchet, Nieves Navarro and Edwige Fenech, and screenwriters Ernesto Gastaldi and Dardano Sachetti. 

Most of these look like they were recorded new for the doc, while others are more vintage, these being Lucio Fulci (who appears in an audio interview) and Nieves Navarro who are sadly no longer with us. The doc does a good job tracing the origins of the giallo from American noir to German Krime films, touching on their literary origin in the novels of Edgar Wallace, whose yellow covers gave the genre it's name. I've been watching extras for giallo films for over a decade, there wasn't a whole lot of revelation in this doc for me but I still enjoyed the stories about the making of these stylish films from the mouths of the major players involved. The doc is primarily in Italian with English subtitles, loaded with talking heads, and clips from the films, with lots of images and movie posters throughout. This thing never gets dull, if you're a fan of the Italian whodunits this is an essential watch. 

Aside from the great doc Severin have gone all-out for extras on this release, beginning on the Blu-ray disc with a gigantic four-hour 'Gialothon' of 82 film trailers! The doc is pretty damn good but for me this is the most desirable part of the package, most of the trailers are in English and presented in widescreen HD, with optional audio commentary from Kat Ellinger, Author of All The Colors Of Sergio Martino, on every single trailer! It is always a delight to hear Ellinger speak about genre films, she does admirable work cramming quite a bit of info and appreciation for each film into a 2-4 minute run time for each trailer. The quality of the trailers varies a bit from title to title, but I never found any of them to be less than watchable. I am not one to be super picky about the video quality of trailer compilations, but I think what we get here is for the most part very good quality. Also on the Blu-ray disc is 'The Giallo Frames' a 20-min interview with John Martin, Editor of The Giallo Pages, a wealth of knowledge about the genre is crammed into this one, it's a very cool extra.

Moving onto disc 2, the DVD, we have a 23-min interview with film historian Marcus Stiglegger who speaks about the German Krimi films that inspired giallo cinema. He traces the origins of the genre from the writings of Edgar Allen Poe and sir Arthur Conan Doyle on to British author Edgar Wallace and the German expressionist cinema movement and beyond. This interview is in English. This is followed-up with 91-min of Krimi trailers, totalling 32 in all! These trailers can be played all at once or you can select a trailer.         

Last, but certainly not least we have the third disc, a soundtrack compilation CD 'The Strange Sounds Of The Bloodstained Films' -  twenty tracks of music from giallo cinema compiled By Alfonso Carillo of Rendezvous! from the archives of Beat Records. This swanky compilation features choice cuts from Riz Ortolani, Ennio Morricone and Bruno Nicolai among others a fine selection from seminal giallo films. 

This 3-disc Blu-ray/DVD/CD release is region-free and comes housed in a spiffy looking black Blu-ray keepcase with a one-sided sleeve of artwork. Inside the keepcase you will find the three discs plus a glossy index-card sized track listing form 20-song 'The Strange Sounds Of The Bloodstained Films' compilation. 
Special Features: 
- The Giallo Frames: Interview With John Martin, Editor Of The Giallo Pages (20 min) 
- Audio Commentary with Kat Ellinger, Author of All The Colors Of Sergio Martino 
- Kriminal!: Trailer Compilation (91 min) 
- The Case Of The Krimi: Interview With Film Historian Marcus Stiglegger (23 min) 
- The Strange Sounds Of The Bloodstained Films: Compiled By Alfonso Carillo of Rendezvous! From The Archives Of Beat Records, remastered By Claudio Fuiano.

For fans of giallo cinema this is a comprehensive and exhaustive set of black-gloved love, it took me days to pour through everything, and the CD has been in heavy rotation in my car all week long, it's a pretty swank listen, highly addictive. 

The critically acclaimed film, The Witch comes to 4K Ultra HD™ Combo Pack (Plus Blu-ray™ and Digital) on April 23rd from Lionsgate. Relive the terrifying experience of witchcraft in this soon-to-be horror classic!

Available for the First Time on 
4K Ultra HD Combo Pack
Including Dolby Vision®

Street Date: 4/23/19

4K UHD SRP: $22.99

One of the most original horror films of the past decade has never looked so good as when The Witch arrives on 4K Ultra HD™ Combo Pack (plus Blu-ray™ and Digital) April 23 from Lionsgate. Directed by Robert Eggers, winner of Best Director at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, this supernatural horror tale stars Ralph Ineson, Katie Dickie, and up-and-coming star Anya Taylor-Joy in a “breakout performance” (Jake Coyle, Associated Press), and has been hailed by Indiewire as “the most exciting and genuinely horrifying American horror film since The Blair Witch Project.” Experience four times the resolution of Full HD with the 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack, which includes Dolby Vision® HDR, 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-screen, highlights that are up to 40 times brighter, and blacks that are 10 times darker. Available for the very first time in this absolutely stunning format, The Witch 4K Ultra HD™ Combo Pack includes an audio commentary with director Robert Eggers, a featurette, a Q&A with cast and crew, and a design gallery, and will be available for the suggested retail price of $22.99.

New England, 1630: William and Katherine lead a devout Christian life with their five children, homesteading on the edge of an impassible wilderness. When their newborn son mysteriously vanishes and their crops fail, the family begins to turn on one another. The Witch is a chilling portrait of a family unraveling within their own fears and anxieties, leaving them prey to an inescapable evil.

- “The Witch: A Primal Folklore” Featurette
- Salem Panel Q&A 
- Design Gallery
- Audio Commentary with Director Robert Eggers

Anya Taylor-Joy - Glass, Split, Morgan
Ralph Ineson -mReady Player One, The Hurricane Heist, The Huntsman: Winter’s War
Katie Dickie - Prometheus, TV’s “Game of Thrones”, TV’s “The Cry”

Godzilla (1998) stomps onto 4K May 14th

The 1998 Monster Spectacle Returns!
The Action-Packed Event Film Debuts on 4K Ultra HD™ May 14th

CULVER CITY, Calif. (February 11, 2019) – GODZILLA®, the action-packed 1998 monster spectacle from Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin, the filmmaking team behind Independence Day, debuts on 4K Ultra HD™ May 14 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Matthew Broderick (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off) and Jean Reno (Léon: The Professional) team up as the unlikely heroes out to save New York City from the giant, fire-breathing monster and its babies hatching in Madison Square Garden. Fully remastered in 4K from the original camera negative with High Dynamic Range, GODZILLA® on 4K Ultra HD also includes new earth-shaking Dolby Atmos sound. The 4K Ultra HD disc also includes three trailers, including the original iconic teaser!

Synopsis: Following French atomic bomb tests in the South Pacific, an unknown creature is spotted passing through the Panama Canal. Scientist Niko Tatopolous is called in to investigate the matter, and he quickly arrives at the conclusion that a giant, irradiated lizard has been created by the explosions. Godzilla® then makes its way north, landing in Manhattan to begin wreaking havoc in the big city.

Bonus Materials on Blu-ray Include:
- Visual Effects Commentary
- Behind the Scenes of Godzilla with Charles Caiman
-  All-Time Best-of Godzilla Fight Scenes
-  “Heroes” Music Video by The Wallflowers

Saturday, February 9, 2019

KALIFORNIA (1993) Collector's Edition arrives March 5 from Shout! Select.

Starring Brad Pitt, Juliette Lewis, David Duchovny, and Michelle Forbes
Excitement, adventure and unimaginable terror await on the road to KALIFORNIA, a film directed by Dominic Sena (Swordfish, Gone in Sixty Seconds). "Brad Pitt is outstanding" (Rolling Stone) and "Juliette Lewis is utterly, heartbreakingly convincing" (Boxoffice) in this chilling psychological thriller co-starring David Duchovny and Michelle Forbes. On March 5, 2019, Shout! Select is proud to present the 1993 cult thriller classic KALIFORNIA Collector’s Edition Blu-ray. This home entertainment release contains the theatrical cut and unrated version of the movie, and special bonus content. Movie collectors and fans can pre-order KALIFORNIA Collector’s Edition Blu-ray at

Movie synopsis
When urban intellectuals Brian (Duchovny) and Carrie (Forbes) set out on a cross-country trip to research a book about serial killers, they share the ride with a couple they barely know — Early Grayce (Pitt) and his girlfriend Adele (Lewis). Locked in a car hurtling westward, the four travelers struggle to find some common ground. But when they finally do connect, Early's violent nature abruptly emerges and the terrified Brian and Carrie realize that they don’t need to go very far to learn about ruthless killers...because they are already face-to-face with one!
KALIFORNIA Collector’s Edition Blu-ray
Special Features
  • NEW An interview with director Dominic Sena
  • NEW Also includes  The Theatrical Cut – available for the first time on Blu-ray
  • Original Featurette
  • Cast Interviews
  • Trailers and TV Spots
1080p High-Definition Widescreen (2.35:1)/English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1/EnglishSDH Subtitles/1993/Color/Approximate Feature Running Time +/- 117 Minutes (Theatrical), 118 Minutes (Unrated)

Announce: Hellboy Animated: Sword of Storms and Blood & Iron arrives on 4K Ultra HD™ Combo Pack (Plus Blu-ray™ and Digital) 4/2

Available for the First Time on
4K Ultra HD™ Combo Pack
to Include Both Dolby Vision® and Dolby Atmos®

Street Date: 4/2/19
4K UHD sRP: $22.99

One of the all-time greatest comics characters comes home when the Hellboy Animated: Sword of Storms and Blood & Iron double feature arrives on 4K Ultra HD™ Combo Pack (plus Blu-ray™ and Digital) April 2 from Lionsgate. Voiced by the very same actors from the popular live-action films, including Ron Perlman as Hellboy, Selma Blair, Doug Jones, and John Hurt, Sword of Storms and Blood & Iron arrive on 4K Ultra HD™ just in time for fans to catch up on the iconic franchise before the new reboot of the live-action film hits theaters on April 12. Experience four times the resolution of full HD with the 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack, which includes Dolby Vision® HDR, 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. The 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack also features Dolby Atmos® audio mixed specifically for the home to place and move audio anywhere in the room, including overhead. Available for the very first time in this absolutely stunning format, the Hellboy Animated double feature 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack is packed with special features and will be available for the suggested retail price of $22.99.

In the first animated feature from director Tad Stones (Buzz Lightyear of Star Command), a folklore professor becomes unwittingly possessed by the ancient Japanese demons of Thunder and Lightning. But when The Bureau of Paranormal Research & Defense dispatches a team of agents to investigate, a cursed samurai sword sends Hellboy to a supernatural dimension of ghosts, monsters, and feudal mayhem. Now, while pyrokinetic Liz Sherman and fishboy Abe Sapien battle one very pissed-off dragon, a lost and cranky Hellboy must find his way home. Even if he can survive the perilous journey, how much crap does a guy have to put up with from the two most vengeful and ferocious spirits of Japanese legend? 

When Hellboy, Liz Sherman, and Abe Sapien are assigned to investigate the ghost-infested mansion of a publicity-hound billionaire, they uncover a plot to resurrect a beautiful yet monstrous vampire from Professor Bruttenholm’s past. But before they can stop her bloodbath, Hellboy will have to battle harpies, hellhounds, a giant werewolf, and even the ferocious goddess Hecate herself. How much crap does a guy have to take from a Hungarian Blood Countess before he and his surrogate father can avenge the souls of the damned? It’s going to take more than just a horde of very pissed-off demons for our heroes to see the light in this animated adventure from creative producers Guillermo Del Toro and Mike Mignola.

- “A New Breed: Creating the New Hellboy” Featurette 
- “Conquering Hellboy: The Actor’s Role” Featurette
- “A View from the Top: The “Heads” Sequence” Featurette
- “Tales from the Tomb: A Look Inside Blood & Iron” Featurette 
- “’Iron Shoes’ with Introduction by Mike Mignola” Featurette
- Sword of Storms Audio Commentary FeaturingHellboy Creator Mike Mignola, Supervising Producer-Director Tad Stones, and Director Phil Winstein
- Blood & Iron Audio Commentary Featuring Mike Mignola, Tad Stones, and Vic Cook
- “Reversal of Fortune, Professor Bloom’s Story” Featurette

Ron Perlman - TV’s “Hand of God,” Hellboy, Hellboy II: The Golden Army
Selma Blair - TV’s “American Crime Story: The People vs. O.J. Simpson,” TV’s “Anger Management”,Hellboy, Hellboy II: The Golden Army
Doug Jones - TV’s “Star Trek: Discovery,”Hellboy, Hellboy II: The Golden Army
John Hurt - That Good Night, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Parts 1 & 2, Hellboy, Hellboy II: The Golden Army

Year of Production: 2006
Title Copyright: All Program Content © 2006, 2007 Starz Media, LLC/Revolution Studios Distribution Company, LLC. Package Artwork © 2018 Starz Media, LLC. Package Design © 2019 Lions Gate Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Type: TV-on-DVD
Rating: PG
Genre: Animation, Action, Adventure
Closed Captioned: NA
Subtitles: Spanish, English SDH
Feature Run Time: 77 Minutes
4K Ultra HD Format: Dolby Vision, 2160p Ultra High Definition, 16x9 (1.78:1) Presentation
Blu-ray Format: 1080p High Definition, 16x9 (1.78:1) Presentation 
4K Audio Status: English Dolby Atmos
Blu-ray Audio Status: English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio™

Year of Production: 2007
Title Copyright: All Program Content © 2006, 2007 Starz Media, LLC/Revolution Studios Distribution Company, LLC. Package Artwork © 2018 Starz Media, LLC. Package Design © 2019 Lions Gate Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Type: TV-on-DVD
Rating: TV-14
Genre: Animation, Action, Fantasy
Closed Captioned: NA
Subtitles: Spanish, English SDH
Feature Run Time: 75 Minutes
4K Ultra HD Format: Dolby Vision, 2160p Ultra High Definition, 16x9 (1.78:1) Presentation
Blu-ray Format: 1080p High Definition, 16x9 (1.78:1) Presentation 
4K Audio Status: English Dolby Atmos
Blu-ray Audio Status: English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio™
Starring Tom Berenger, Mimi Rogers and Lorraine Bracco
A stunning New York socialite and a down-to-earth city cop are caught in a deadly web of illicit passion and heart-stopping suspense in the taut, stylish thriller film classic, SOMEONE TO WATCH OVER ME. Directed by Ridley Scott (The MartianBlade Runner), the film stars Tom Berenger (InceptionPlatoon), Mimi Rogers (BoschLost in Space) and Lorraine Bracco (Blue BloodsThe Sopranos). On March 12, 2019, Shout! Select will release SOMEONE TO WATCH OVER ME on Blu-ray™. Movie collectors and fans can now pre-order SOMEONE TO WATCH OVER ME Blu-ray at

Newly appointed detective Mike Keegan (Tom Berenger) finds his life turned upside-down when he's assigned to protect Claire Gregory (Mimi Rogers), the beautiful eyewitness to a brutal murder. Lured into danger and the dizzying heights of Gregory's glamorous lifestyle, Keegan struggles to walk the line between protection and obsession — while trying to stay one step ahead of the psychotic killer. Acclaimed director Ridley Scott paints an erotically seductive portrait of high-stakes suspense in America's power playground in SOMEONE TO WATCH OVER ME.
Special Feature
·      New interviews with Writer Howard Franklin and Director of Photography Steven Poster.
1080p High-Definition Widescreen (1.85:1)/English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1/English SDH Subtitles/1987/Color/Approximate Feature Running Time +/- 106 Minutes. Rated R.