Tuesday, September 13, 2005

New on DVD (09/13/05)...

Not a huge week.

The major TV set is the final set, S4 (Season Four) of the long form SCTV Network 90. Some of the show’s big cast members, including Dave Thomas, had left the show by this point, although a very young Martin Short had signed on in their place. The set runs about $60 at various web venders.

Other news TV sets include Brady Bunch S3, Cheers S6, Everyone Loves Raymond S4, Frasier S6, Las Vegas S2, One Tree Hill S2, Pretender S2, Sigmund & the Sea Monster S1, Smallville S4, Taxi S3. The best prices for each can be found at dvdpricesearch.com.

The DVD movie of the week is the boffo new 4-disc SE of the epic Ben-Hur. The film takes up two discs, the third showcases the entire 1925 silent version of the same story, and the fourth loaded with documentaries and suchlike. There’s also a commentary, and star Charlton Heston kicks in some comments on certain scenes. Running about $30, there’s a discrete version that also offers a Bible Study Guide for those so inclined.

The fun slasher flick Alone in the Dark, with a great cast including Dwight Schultz of the A-Team, Donald Pleasance, Martin Landau and Jack Palance, is out in a new special edition featuring a director’s commentary and interviews. It runs about $10.

Rather farther down on the Martin Landau filmography (and we were talking Alone in the Dark before, not Ed Wood) is The Being, a horrendous bargain basement ‘80s monster flick co-starring Ruth Buzzi (!) and the inevitable Jose Ferrer.

Bloodsuckers is a ‘70s horror flick about a Greek vampiric cult with the classy cast of Edward Woodward, Peter Cushing and Patrick Macnee. $15

Silent film buffs will rejoice at the release of the Charley Chase Collection, Volume 2, and the Harold Lloyd Collection, Volume 2, each about $20.

If you liked Ray and are looking forward to the new Johnny Cash biopic, check out the new special edition of Coal Miner’s Daughter , with a brilliant Sissy Spacek as country singer Loretta Lynn, and featuring Tommy Lee Jones. It’s a great movie, and runs about $15

The ghosts of the ‘80s arise to plague my benighted generation in the form of Dan Ackroyd’s Doctor Detroit, the Andy Kaufman robot comedy Heartbeeps, and the even funnier Rumble Fish, directed by Francis Ford Coppola and featuring every up and coming young actor of the early ‘80s.

The 2004 TV movie Frankenstein, written by Dean Koontz (!) and meant as a series pilot, hits DVD for about $12.

Meanwhile, Anchor Bay is packaging old DVDs into money saving "Fright Pack" collections, jocularly packaged to resemble six packs of beer. “Man’s Worst Friends” brings together Rats: Night of Terror, Dracula’s Dog, Cat ‘o Nine Tails, Slugs and The Black Cat (Fulci). The “Walking Dead” set disinters Hell of the Living Dead, Dead Heat, Nightmare City, City of the Living Dead, Let Sleeping Corpses Lie and House by the Cemetary. Many of the discs have extensive bonus features. Each set can be found for under $20.

Image collects two more Italian Sword & Sandal movies, The Hero of Rome and Invincible Gladiator for around $14.

Criterion brings out David Bowie’s The Man Who Fell to Earth and Art Garfunkle’s Bad Timing.

The Monster of Venice is a ‘60s Italian black and white horror flick about a killer menacing that city’s famous canals. $10

The Shaw Martial Arts Legends set collects ten chop socky movies from the famous Shaw Brothers.


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