‘Never-Ending Man: Hayao Miyazaki’ Targets Blu-Ray Release In April

 

Oscar winning filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki is one of cinema’s most revered artists, and his life is spotlighted in the documentary Never-Ending Man: Hayao Miyazaki. The title comes out on Blu-ray and DVD Combo Pack April 30 from Shout! Factory and GKIDS.

The project focuses on Miyazaki’s journey on working with unfamiliar CGI technology as he creates the short film Boro the Caterpillar. The disc comes with a 70 minute version in Japanese with English subtitles and a 48-minute broadcast version with English narration (this cut comes with footage not included in the 70-minute version). The documentary received a limited release in theaters back in December.

What are your favorite Miyazaki films? Spirited Away? Princess Mononoke? Feel free to comment below!

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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi

‘Creed II’ Slugs It Out On Blu-ray With March Release

Creed II, which took in $166 million worldwide, hits Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD on March 5 (its digital release is set for February 12).

Directed by Steven Caple Jr., Creed II centers on Adonis Creed’s (Michael B. Jordan) boxing match against Viktor Drago (Florian Munteanu). The showdown is a personal one for Adonis, as his father died in the ring fighting Viktor’s dad Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren). Sylvester Stallone returns as Rocky Balboa as well as Tessa Thompson, who stars as Adonis’ significant other Bianca.

Special  features on Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD edition includes deleted scenes and several featurettes (“From Father to Son, Blood Runs Hot,” “Finding the Authentic,” “The Women of Creed II,” and “The Rocky Legacy”). The DVD version includes the featurette “The Rocky Legacy.”

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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi

‘When Harry Met Sally…’ Celebrates 30 Years With Top-Notch Blu-Ray Release

One of this month’s top Blu-ray releases is one of cinema’s most beloved romantic comedies, as When Harry Met Sally… is once again front and center thanks to Shout Select (a division of Shout! Factory).

The collector’s edition celebrates the 30th anniversary of the film’s release, and cinephiles will be treated to a 4K scan of the original negative. Although the movie is worth watching even on a grainy DVD edition, it’s great to see beautiful transfer of the Rob Reiner directed classic.

Penned by Nora Ephron, the narrative centers on the friendship between Harry Burns (Billy Crystal) and Sally Albright (Meg Ryan). They shared a somewhat uneasy (yet comical) drive as relative strangers from Chicago to New York in their early twenties, and in the ensuing decade a couple of chance encounters led to a lasting friendship (and eventual romance). Co-starring late actors Carrie Fisher and Bruno Kirby as their close friends, the picture has transcended time and weather over the years, and it also turned Harry Connick Jr. into a star (the soundtrack features Connick Jr. renditions of the “Where Or When” and “It Had To Be You”).

The disc also comes with “Scenes From A Friendship,”  a new feature that’s exclusive to 30th Anniversary Edition. For 44 minutes Reiner and Crystal reminisce, sans an interviewer, about their respective journey on the film. During the conversation, the pair get personal with their close knit relationship which started more than a decade earlier (Crystal was a guest star on All In the Family). Previous special features, including audio commentary from Reiner, Ephron, and Crystal are also featured in the collection.

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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi

‘The Nutcracker and the Four Realms’ Hits Blu-Ray And Digital In January

The Nutcracker and the Four Realms, inspired by E.T.A. Hoffmann’s revered tale, hits Blu-ray, Digital, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD on January 29.

The tale centers on Clara (Mackenzie Foy), a 14-year-old who traverses through a parallel world where she meets a Nutcracker soldier (Jayden Fowora-Knight),the Sugar Plum Fairy (Keira Knightley), and Fourth Realm ruler Mother Ginger (Helen Mirren).

Click on the media bar to hear Mackenzie Foy discuss her lifelong familiarity with the story.

Special features include deleted scenes, two music videos (“Fall On Me” performed by Andrea Bocelli and son Matteo Bocelli, and “The Nutcracker Suite” performed by Lang Lang), and two featurettes (“On Pointe: A Conversation with Misty Copeland” and “Unwrapping The Nutcracker and the Four Realms”).

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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi

Sylvester Stallone Action Thriller ‘Backtrace’ Hits Blu-Ray In February

Sylvester Stallone has played his share of cops (Nighthawks, Cobra, Copland), and now he’s back as a lawman in Backtrace, an action thriller that hits Blu-ray, DVD and Digital on February 19.

The story centers on a jailed thief (Full Metal Jacket’s Matthew Modine) with amnesia who pieces parts of his life back together thanks to an experimental drug. After a prison break lands places him back into civilian life, he attempts to find the loads of cash he left behind. Stallone pays the lawman who’s out to stop him. Special features include cast and crew interviews and “The Making of Backtrace” featurette.

Backtrace also stars Ryan Guzman (Heroes: Reborn), Christopher McDonald (Happy Gilmore) and Colin Egglesfield (Something Borrowed, The Client List).

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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi

Criterion Charts A March Blu-Ray Release For Poverty Row Classic ‘Detour’

Detour, a film noir that is considered one of Poverty Row’s most distinguished features, hits Blu-ray March 19 via The Criterion Collection.

The feature centers on a pianist (Tom Neal) whose fate takes a turn for the worse thanks to a chance meeting with a cunning drifter named Vera (Ann Savage, delivering an iconic femme fatale performance). Detour also is considered B-filmmaker Edgar G. Ulmer’s finest work, and Ulmer’s innovative methods of making the most out of a shoestring budget is still revered to this day.

Special features on the disc (the film underwent a new 4K digital restoration) include the 2004 documentary Edgar G. Ulmer: The Man Off-Screen, a new interview with author Noah Isenberg (Edgar G. Ulmer: A Filmmaker at the Margins), a new program about Detour’s restoration, and an essay from critic Robert Polito.

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Posted by: Greg Srisavasdi