The weekend’s here. You’ve just been paid, and it’s burning a hole in your pocket. What’s a pop culture geek to do? In hopes of steering you in the right direction to blow some of that hard-earned cash, it’s time for the FRED Weekend Shopping Guide - your spotlight on the things you didn’t even know you wanted…
(Please support FRED by using the links below to make any impulse purchases - it helps to keep us going…)
Before we kick off this edition of the Weekend Shopping Guide, a brief note - This edition is a big one. With a lot of catching up to do. Mainly because I spent the latter part of last year and beginning of this year recovering from surgery. So, naturally, things stack up, but consider this a clearing of the backlog and a return to regular service. So, having said that, let’s kick this off…
While Hot Toys has crafted numerous Stormtroopers from the film, as well as Kylo Ren and Finn, there’s no denying that they weren’t the Force Awakens characters we were all waiting for. Ah, but now we’ve got our 1/6-scale Rey & BB-8 set (Sideshow/Hot Toys, $289.99), and they were both worth the wait. The Rey perfectly captures Daisy Ridley in her Jakku togs, including the ability to wrap her in her full scavenging gear of goggles and scarf. As for accessories, she’s got her staff, blaster, and Luke’s lightsaber. And BB-8? I mean, he’s BB-8! He’s a ball with a magnetically-attached head, which also includes a light feature. What’s not to love?
There have been many a memorable book released about the Star Wars universe, from its creation and inception to its execution, but none are as impressively incredible as the absolutely mammoth Star Wars: Ralph McQuarrie (Abrams, $250.00). If you’re unfamiliar with McQuarrie, he’s the conceptual artist hired by Lucas to help visualize the now-familiar galaxy far, far away, and his work carried through all three of the iconic original trilogy. For the first time ever, all of his artwork, much of it unseen, has been collected together in this two volume hardcover set. Weighing over 20 pounds, it’s difficult to really impress upon you just how wonderful this set truly is. So, juat get it and see.
I saw it three times in the theater, so it’s safe to say that I have the latest Star Wars adventure firmly lodged in my noggin. That makes my brain fertile ground for The Art Of Rogue One (Abrams, $40.00 SRP), which is loaded with all of the developmental artwork and designs for the film (including many unused concepts).
From their visual guides to their vehicle schematics, DK has published some truly definitive reference books detailing the minutiae of the Star Wars universe, and Star Wars: Complete Locations (DK, $35.00 SRP) fills in another chunk of detail, from Rey’s home on Jakku to the mines of Mustafar, and Bespin’s Cloud City to the Mos Eisley Cantina, it is full of incredible cross-sections. The only thing missing? Anything from Rogue One.
For that, you’ll have to get Star Wars: Rogue One - The Ultimate Visual Guide (DK, $30.00 SRP), which has got all of the character, location, weapons, props, and vehicle information you could ask for, and also merges in the info that used to feature in a separate “cross-sections” release, making for a nicely comprehensive volume. It’s all of the exquisite detail minutia you crave, straight from Pablo Hidalgo and the Lucasfilm Story Group.
Ever wonder how you win the people’s hearts & minds in a galaxy far, far away? Look no further than the images contained within Star Wars Propaganda (HarperDesign, $40.00 SRP), which features dozens of posters targeting both citizens of the Empire and the Rebel Alliance. It’s a nicely tongue-in-cheek exercise fans are sure to dig.
If you’re not a regular subscriber and just want handy volumes featuring the best interviews and articles that the magazine has to offer, pick up The Best Of Star Wars Insider (Titan Books, $19.99 SRP each). Four jam-packed volumes are currently available, and are certainly worthy additions to any geek’s library.
If you’d like to a breakfast treat from a galaxy far, far away to your table and you’re a little short on blue milk, then Thinkgeek has you sorted with their nifty BB-8 Waffle Maker (Thinkgeek, $39.99). Yes, it only makes a single waffle at a time, but it is in the shape of everyone’s favorite spherical droid, so how can you possibly deny the tractor beam of its appeal?
Of all the characters that Marvel has adapted into their cinematic universe thus far, the diciest proposition to make the leap from comic to film was probably Doctor Strange (Walt Disney, Rated PG-13, 3D Blu-Ray-$49.98 SRP), as it’s a character and premise that could certainly devolve into nonsensical goofiness *and* pretentiousness rather easily. Mercifully, Marvel managed to pull it off, yet again, in a film that practically requires you to view its trippy vistas in their proper 3D presentation. Bonus materials include an audio commentary, featurettes, deleted scenes, a gag reel, a brand new “Thor & Darryl” short, and a view into the near future of Marvel’s big-screen plans.
Hot on the heels of the film, explore The Mysterious World Of Doctor Strange (DK, $24.99 SRP) in this handy reference guide that, much like the Marvel book above, takes a fast and furious journey through the comics lore of Earth’s Sorcerer Supreme.
There is a zen joy to be found in coloring, as the proliferation of adult coloring books in recent years attests. Disney has thrown their hat into the ring with some truly beautiful hardcover entries into their Art of Coloring series - Disney Villains & Disney Animals (Disney Editions, $15.99 SRP each). Both contains 100 images “to inspire creativity and inspiration”, and also a fair bit of relaxation. And, while it’s not hardcover, they’ve also released an Art Of Coloring book for Moana (Disney Editions, $15.99).
And while we’re on the subject of Disney’s most recent feature and art, you should also pick up The Art Of Moana (Chronicle Books, $40.00 SRP), which maintains the wonderful relationship between Disney and Chronicle in producing absolutely wonderful journeys through the process of creating their animated features.
While we must weight a half-year longer than we normally would to get our fix of new episodes, HBO was at least kind enough to make that wait a little easier by moving up the home video release of the 6th season of Game Of Thrones (HBO, Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$39.99 SRP), which means we can dive in to the numerous audio commentaries and featurettes, and spend a fair amount of time with the always-welcome “Histories & Lore” section, which delves into the various backstories behind the events on screen.
After living in Brooklyn for a few months, I can state that not only is Broad City (Comedy Central, Not Rated, DVD-$19.99 SRP) an exquisite comedy series, but it also beautifully captures the look, vibe, and delightful eccentricity of that Manhattan borough. The 3rd season set contains deleted scenes, featurettes, and more, but sadly no chicken & rice soup from Little Purity.
The latest cinematic entry in J.K. Rowling’s cinematic Harry Potter universe - the prequel Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them - has generated not one, but a trio of lavish books exploring the world within the film and the creation of the movie itself. The illustration-filled The Art Of The Film Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them (Harper Design, $50.00 SRP) delves into the design process, while Inside The Magic: The Making Of Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them (Harper Design, $19.99 SRP) takes a more comprehensive overview of the film’s creation. The most spectacular, though, is The Case Of Beasts: Explore The Film Wizardry Of Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them (Harper Design, $45.00 SRP), an absolutely wonderful tome filled with prop reproductions and blink-and-you-miss-it documentation of all of the stunning prop and design work that goes into realizing such an immersive world.
As long as you’re reading about the adventures of Newt Scamander, you might as well dress as him, too, with Thinkgeek’s exclusive Newt Scamander Scarf & Pin set (Thinkgeek, $32.99), which features your very own Hufflepuff scarf (with Newt’s monogrammed label) plus Newt’s monogrammed pendant pin.
Though, if you want to dip back into the world of the original films featuring Harry Potter, HarperDesign has released another volume of their exhaustively illuminating vault series, Harry Potter: The Artifact Vault (HarperDesign, $45 SRP), which focuses on the myriad props and set dressing found in the cinematic Potterverse, from wizarding world cereal boxes to Voldemort’s Horcruxes.
We’ve bought the films dozens of times in various formats, but Disney can always find a new bit of tat to make fans leap towards another purchase of on of their classic films. Case in point is the new Signature Collection edition of Pinocchio (Walt Disney, Rated G, Blu-Ray-$39.99 SRP)plusses the bonus materials from previous editions with newly-discovered artwork for an alternate version of the “Pleasure Island” sequence, Walt’s thoughts on the film (via rare interviews and recordings), a remake of a classic Oswald The Lucky Rabbit short, and more.
As a massive fan of their theme parks, to have a book like Maps Of The Disney Parks (Disney Editions, $40.00 SRP), which finally collects and curates the dozens of maps created for the parks over the last 60 years, is truly a delight. With a gatefold layout that perfectly complements their proper presentation, this is a must-have for anyone who’s ever stepped into a magic kingdom made for the young at heart.
As our world seems to regress into backwards thinking, it’s important to have films like Loving (Universal, Rated PG-13, Blu-Ray-$34.98 SRP), which remind us of both a time we should never allow ourselves to go back to, when interracial marriage was illegal in the state of Virginia, and the brave people who stood up against that injustice, in this case Richard and Mildred Loving, who took their case against Virginia’s law all the way to the Supreme Court. Bonus materials include an audio commentary and featurettes.
Having spent time in London and New York - two incredibly dense cities - I find a book like the Smithsonian’s Great City Maps (DK, $30.00 SRP) to be a geeky rabbit hole, as it is filled with historical maps, plans, and illustrations from throughout history. With context throughout, it tells a fascinating tale of the hows and whys cities have evolved in the way they have, both logically and illogically.
Sure, I’ll watch an animated tale featuring Batman leading a gang of DC’s mystical superheroes - Constantine, Zatanna, Swamp Thing, Deadman, and Etrigan - against a supernatural foe that threatens Gotham and Metropolis. Justice League Dark (Warner Bros., Rated R, Blu-Ray-$39.99 SRP) also includes a handful of featurettes, the 2016 Comic-Con panel, bonus cartoons, and a sneak peek at Teen Titans: The Judas Contract. Oh, and if you get the collector’s set, you also snag a nifty John Constantine figurine.
Want to get a handle on the characters of the DC Comics universe? Your definitive, fully-illustrated guide is The DC Comics Encyclopedia (DK, $40.00 SRP). Encompassing over 75 years of continuity through DC” most recent confusing company-wide reboot, it’s the fully-updated reference you need to try and make sense of who’s who now.
That the film adaptation of Carrie Fisher’s novel Postcards From The Edge (Mill Creek, Rated R, Blu-Ray-$19.99 SRP) should make its high-def debut so soon after her passing is a bittersweet coincidence, with the real highlight being the inclusion of an audio commentary she recorded in 2001. The film is great, but hearing Fisher speak is the real joy.
With a title like Marvel: Absolutely Everything You Need To Know (DK, $19.99 SRP), you hope that it’s more than just a boast, but this book is the perfect (inexpensive) introduction to hand to a young kid to answer their questions in a fun, engaging fashion, as its laid out in a hyperkinetic, nuggety style that makes it easy and fun to dip into and find out how many Green Goblins there have been.
Though overlooked due to all of the drama in his personal life at the time, home video is the perfect way to give Allied (Paramount, Rated R, 4K Blu-Ray-$27.99 SRP) another shot, as it’s a great romantic spy thriller starring Brad Pitt as a WWII intelligence officer who learns his wife (Marion Cotillard) may be working with the enemy. Bonus materials include featurettes and more.
In an age of empty spectacle, Arrival (Paramount, Rated PG-13, 4K Blu-Ray-$48.99 SRP) is a gloriously mature science fiction film that hearkens back to Day The Earth Stood Still and Contact, as it revolves around an elite team sent to make contact with an alien craft while global fears and tensions mount. Bonus materials include a clutch of featurettes.
Sometimes, the nerd in my is so easily pleased, as with the decidedly geeky appeal of Thinkgeek’s Star Trek: The Next Generation Transporter Pad LED Coasters (Thinkgeek, $29.99). Each set contains four coasters that, when you set your drink on them, illuminate your beverage with a colored LED glow. See? So geeky. So wonderful.
Cheers to the fine folks at Fantagraphics for continuing to make this Disney duck fan deliriously delighted by continuing their prestige releases of not only classic Carl Barks material, but also the works of the modern duck man, Don Rosa. From their ongoing Carl Barks Library comes Donald Duck: The Ghost Sheriff Of Last Gasp (Fantagraphics, $29.99 SRP), featuring 21 stories and plentiful background. Meanwhile, The Don Rosa Library Volume 6 (Fantagraphics, $29.99 SRP) contains 7 tales, plus copious notes from Rosa himself.
Telling the true story of a pacifist medic (Andrew Garfield) at the front lines of Okinawa during the Korean War who managed to save 75 men while never carrying a weapon, Hacksaw Ridge (Summit, Rated R, Blu-Ray-$39.99 SRP) is a solid-if-uninspired war film from director Mel Gibson. Certainly history buffs will eat it up. Bonus materials include deleted scenes and a making-of documentary.
It’s certainly not my favorite Mike Judge show - that would be King Of The Hill - but there’s no denying the cultural impact of his first success, the totality of which is now collected in Beavis And Butt-Head: The Complete Collection (Paramount, Not Rated, DVD-$26.99 SRP), which contains the TV episodes, the movie, and music videos.
Mill Creek’s releases are a godsend for pop culture fans desperate to scratch a nostalgic itch on a budget. Not only have they released the complete first season of a personal favorite of mine, 227 (Mill Creek, Not Rated, DVD-$14.98 SRP), but also the complete 13-episode run of Jim Varney’s It’s Ernest! (Mill Creek, Not Rated, DVD-$9.98 SRP).
You can also take a one-way ticket back to the 80s with complete series box sets of both Miami Vice (Mill Creek, Not Rated, DVD-$29.99 SRP) and Knight Rider (Mill Creek, Not Rated, DVD-$24.95 SRP), which are now available for a ridiculously low price for a full-series box set. So, really, you have no excuse not to snatch them up.
There have been a lot of mediocre Stephen King adaptations, and Cell (Lionsgate, Rated R, Blu-Ray-$24.99 SRP) doesn’t sink that low, it’s certainly not amongst the best. What merits it does have is mainly due to the presence of stars Samuel L. Jackson and John Cusack, who do a remarkable job being Samuel L. Jackson and John Cusack in this tale of cell-signal that turns people into killers. Bonus materials include an audio commentary and a making-of featurette.
Remember when 2016 showed us that there was such a thing as hope, and even when things looked bleakest, there could be a come-from-behind victory? Yeah, the Cubs winning the world series really set up false hopes for the election disaster right around the corner, but if you want to relive happier times, dive in to the Chicago Cubs: 2016 World Champions Collector’s Edition (Shout Factory, Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$59.99 SRP), an 8-disc set containing all 7 games of the series, plus additional highlights.
With a string of legendary TV shows to his name - including All In The Family, Maude, The Jeffersons, and Good Times - the American Masters documentary Norman Lear: Just Another Version Of You (PBS, Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$24.99 SRP) explores the career and extraordinary social activism that defines his legacy as a still-working nonagenarian.
Forty years later, and Nicolas Roeg’s The Man Who Fell To Earth (Lionsgate, Rated R, Blu-Ray-$34.99 SRP) is still a bizarre piece of cinema, anchored by an otherworldly performance from the late David Bowie. Now, it’s celebrated in a brand new 3-disc anniversary edition, featuring loads of bonus materials plus a commemorative booklet, postcards, poster, and more.
The fine folks at Quantum Mechanix have boldy gone where fans have been hoping that a company would go by finally securing the rights to produce 1/6-scale figures from the Star Trek universe. It’s fitting that their first two releases are the iconic duo of Kirk & Spock (QMx, $179.99 each). While I may have some quibbles with Kirk’s height in relation to Spock, there’s no denying that the Shatner and Nimoy likenesses are impeccable, complemented by exquisite costuming and a sublime array of scaled accessories, including phasers, communicators, and Spock’s tricorder. Heck, they’ve even replicated Shatner’s paunch. THAT is an endearing level of detail.
Sadly, Star Trek Beyond (Paramount, Rated PG-13, 3D Blu-Ray-$39.98 SRP) can’t even get beyond its poorly-conceived reboot universe in its third time at bat, as it remains hobbled by a still-inadequate set up for its characters and their new-continuity relationships, all while still trying way-too-hard to be seen as “cool” and “hip” without bothering to tell a good story. Bonus features include featurettes, deleted scenes, and more.
Celebrating a half century of storytelling, Star Trek: 50 Artists 50 Years (Titan Books, $39.95 SRP) is exactly what its title states, presenting artwork that spans the franchise’s 50-year history in an eclectic collection of pieces.
I mean, I just… I just don’t know what to do with Star Trek Cats (Chronicle Books, $14.95 SRP), a book of illustrations which re-interpret classic Star Trek: TOS scenes, but with cats. Yes. With cats. Except for Mugato. He’s a dog.
Well, Bad Moms (Universal, Rated R, Blu-Ray-$26.98 SRP), you had me at a cast that includes Kristen Bell and Mila Kunis, but then the film - about a trio of overworked moms who decide to go on a wild freedom binge - is a fun, funny romp that lives up to their comedic potential. Bonus materials include cast interviews, deleted scenes, and a gag reel.
I had high hopes that the quirky, visually-bizarre subject matter of Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children (Fox, Rated PG-13, 4K Bluc-Ray-$39.98 SRP) might spark a return to the glory days of director Tim Burton rather than the stiff, overly-precious films he’s been making in the past 2 decades (with the exception of Big Fish and Big Eyes), but this outing never really delivers on the potential to be found in a secret world for children with unusual powers. Bonus materials include featurettes, a music video, and a gallery of Burton’s sketches.
Snag yourself The Carol Burnett Show: The Lost Episode - Classic Carol (Time Life, Not Rated, DVD-$34.99 SRP), you can watch 14 original, uncut episodes from the legendary, rarely seen first 5 seasons, hand-selected by Carol herself. Bonus materials include a writers’ roundtable, interviews, and bonus The Garry Moore Show episodes.
While not as praised as Ridley Scott’s inaugural film, the design work that went into its sequel is every bit as impressive, as spotlighted in Aliens: The Set Photography (Titan Books, $39.95 SRP), which shines a light on the production of one cinema’s most effective cinematic continuations.
It’s unfortunate that it took a tragic loss of a music icon to get the release of his films in a single high-definition set, but at least the Prince Movie Collection (Warner Bros., Rated R, Blu-Ray-$24.98 SRP) now exists, collecting Purple Rain, Under The Cherry Moon, and Graffiti Bridge. Bonus materials include behind-the-scenes featurettes, music videos, and more.
With a show that sports such a unique design and animation process, it should come as little surprise that there is plenty of interesting information to be found in The Art Of Archer (Dey St., $29.99 SRP), in addition to all of the behind-the-scenes info on the writing process and insight into the characters. But for me? The true fascination lies in that aforementioned animation process.
If you can’t get enough Star Wars even with Rogue One and Rebels, you’ll probably get a kick out of LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures (Walt Disney, Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$36.99 SRP), a rollicking, heartfelt adventure that takes place between Empire Strikes Back and Return Of The Jedi and follows a family of scavengers as they run afoul of the Empire. Bonus materials include a pair of featurettes.
I wasn’t expecting much from War Dogs (Warner Bros., Rated R, Blu-Ray-$29.98 SRP), so when I got a fast-moving cross between Goodfellas and Three Kings based on the true story of a pair of twenty-something gun runners (Jonah Hill & Miles Teller), I was pleasantly surprised. Bonus materials include a trio of featurettes.
George Miller’s Mad Max: Fury Road was an incredible film, and Miller’s intended black & white presentation of the film gets its debut in the Mad Max: Fury Road - Black & Chrome Edition (Warner Bros., Rated R, Blu-Ray-$29.98 SRP), and it certainly is a unique way of viewing the flick. Is it better? No, but it’s different enough to be worth a spin. Bonus materials include an all-new introduction, plus featurettes, and deleted scenes.
Although a failed format, Cinerama was a truly incredible visual experience, and you can get a home approximation of the kind of epic productions that were produced to show off the format with The Best Of Cinerama and the Bing Crosby-hosted Russian Adventure (Flicker Alley, Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$39.95 SRP each). Both are beautifully restored in high definition, and presented in the “smilebox” framing that best approximates the curved shape of the Cinerama screens.
Meryl Streep stars as the eponymous Florence Foster Jenkins (Paramount, Rated PG-13, Blu-Ray-$35.99 SRP), a New York socialite whose husband Hugh Grant) indulges her fantasy to be a world-class opera singer, despite the fact that she lacks any talent whatsoever. Bonus materials include deleted scenes, featurettes, and a Q&A.
It seems ludicrous that it’s taken this many years to get a proper retrospective tome, but that glaring oversight has finally been rectified with the oversized Batman: A Celebration Of The Classic TV Series (Titan Books, $50 SRP), an in-depth look at the creation, production, and legacy of the 1966 series, including an introduction and commentary from Adam West.
I love animation maquettes, but don’t love the massive price tag often associated with them. I’m also a fan of the animated universe based on the Bruce Timm style, particularly the Batman and Superman animated series. The vinyl figures being produced by Diamond Select scratches the itch of getting absolutely perfect statuary but at a reasonable price. Just take a look at the pics of their Batman, Batgirl, Superman, and Joker (Diamond Select, $45.00 SRP each) below. They’re great. I just hope this line expands for years to come.
The long-awaited and much-requested animated adaptation of Alan Moore & Brian Bolland’s legendary Batman/Joker story The Killing Joke (Warner Bros., Rated R, Blu-Ray-$24.98 SRP) is a pretty strong case for “be careful what you wish for”, as it manages to take an already problematic story and make it even more uncomfortable through numerous wrongheaded attempts to expand the slight story out to feature length.; For a much better, brighter tale of the Caped Crusader, instead dive into Batman: Return Of The Caped Crusaders (Warner Bros., Rated PG, Blu-Ray-$24.98 SRP), an animated feature set within the 1966 TV series continuity, featuring the return of Adam West and Burt Ward to their iconic roles.
While the second season of Gotham (Warner Bros., Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$44.98 SRP) went just full-on into batshit insane territory, the fourth season of Arrow (Warner Bros., Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$44.98 SRP) seemed to course correct some of the creative misdirection of the previous season. And if you want a show that swings wildly for the “let’s just have fun” fences, there’s the first season of Legends Of Tomorrow (Warner Bros., Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$39.99 SRP), which doesn’t quite work, but I’m rooting for them to sort it out.
There was a fair amount of concern about how well any follow up to Avatar: The Last Airbender could live up to the long shadow of its predecessor, but The Legend Of Korra (Nickelodeon, Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$49.99 SRP) certainly managed to live up and then some. Now, you can experience the entire series in beautiful high definition, along with audio commentaries, featurettes, and more. The box set even includes an exclusive, condensed mini-version of the show’s Art Of book.
While The Legend Of Tarzan (Warner Bros., Rated PG-13, 3D Blu-Ray-$44.95 SRP) is not a terribly good film, it’s enjoyable enough to see any film with Samuel L. Jackson and Christoph Waltz chew scenery while Alexander Skarsgard Lord Of The Apes it up. Bonus materials include a handful of featurettes.
Yeah, X-Men: Apocalypse (Fox, Rated PG-13, 4K Blu-Ray-$39.99 SRP) is an awful film, even if it looks pretty good in full 4k HD. However, if it also means that we get a beautiful 4K release of the vastly superior X-Men: First Class (Fox, Rated PG-13, 4K Blu-Ray-$39.99 SRP), then I’ll take it. Bonus materials on both carry over all of the special features from the previous Blu-Ray releases.
Often overlooked in light of his more memorable outings, Orson Welles’ cinematic adaptation of MacBeth (Olive, Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$19.99 SRP) is worth taking a look at, as it’s certainly infused with iconic visual and dramatic flourishes. The 2-disc set contains both the original 1948 cut and the edited 1950 version, plus additional archival interviews and clips.
My gosh, Suicide Squad (Warner Bros., Not Rated, 3D Blu-Ray-$39.99 SRP) is an awful film. And awful, ugly film, filled with awful, ugly characters being awful and ugly in an awful plot that is equal parts lazy and cynical. And then there’s Jared Leto’s Joker, which is the awful and ugly capper to it all. It’s just all so… awful. And ugly. And on this disc, you get an extended cut, which adds even more awful, ugly nonsense. Bonus materials include featurettes, a gag reel, and more.
The 5th edition of the incredibly dense Disney A to Z (Disney Editions, $40.00 SRP) adds an additional 10 years of history to the already massive archive of all things House of Mouse, thanks to the meticulous curation of author Dave Smith, Chief Archivist Emeritus of the Walt Disney Archives. Want to know all about the original Pete’s Dragon? This is your book.
Often overlooked in favor the cartoons starring Mickey & friends, Walt Disney’s Silly Symphonies: A Companion To The Classic Cartoon Series (Disney Editions, $40.00 SRP) finally gives full and in-depth exploration to the animated shorts where the Disney company did most of the innovation that would inform their feature films, from color to the use of the multiplane camera.
I’ve been a huge proponent of the continual releases we’ve been getting, and now we get another brand new collection from The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson: The Vault Series Archive Classics (Time Life, Not Rated, DVD-$35.99 SRP), a 6-DVD set featuring 12 never-before-released full shows, plus a collection of bonus clips. My favorite? Vincent Price cooking.
An iconic classic gets a beautiful high definition treatment courtesy of the new “Olive Signature” edition of High Noon (Olive, Not Rated, Blu-Ray-$24.99 SRP) from a 4k master. Bonus materials include a handful of brand new featurettes plus the original theatrical trailer.
Originally banned by South Africa’s Apartheid government, cult flick Joe Bullet (Film Detective, Not Rated, DVD-$14.99 SRP) makes its DVD debut. Think of it as a South African Billy Jack, with a focus on soccer.
It seems Shondaland has become the newest Disney theme park, and the latest park expansion is The Catch (ABC Studios, Not Rated, DVD-$19.99 SRP), about a world-class investigator (Mireille Enios) who finds herself both romantically and financially the victim of a conman (Peter Krause) who manages to draw her into his world as he tries to stay ahead of her colleagues and his associates. Bonus materials include bloopers and deleted scenes.
So there you have it… my humble suggestions for what to watch, listen to, play with, or waste money on this coming weekend. See ya next week…
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