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Get Lost in del Toro’s Labyrinth

By Brian Thomas     May 15, 2007


PAN’S LABYRINTH
© New Line
You’ll see a number of titles on the List, including several from Warner Bros. this week, which may have you reacting thusly: “Hey! Isn’t that already available on DVD? I saw a copy at Wal-Mart for only $8.99! Are they trying to rip us off?!”

Well, these titles are indeed already on DVD, but it may have been some time since they were released and may be hard to find in some markets. Video labels want to be sure their best selling titles remain “evergreen” by periodically upgrading their masters and reissuing titles that may have grown stale in the marketplace. Sure, you probably have one or two editions of Caddyshack on your shelf, but not everybody does, and WHV wants to be sure it’s there when somebody goes into a store wanting to buy it.

That doesn’t mean they won’t try to be as opportunistic as they can in order to sell more. Sony could have made the extended version Spider-man 2.1 available sooner, but as they wanted as much Spidey product on the shelves right now as they could get, and were bound to reissue the sequel anyway, they decided that they’d try to get some people that already owned it to buy it again to get an extended cut.

I’m not happy with the practice of creating random alternate versions based on the whims of marketing departments, but then, I don’t need to support them with my dollars if I don’t want to.
 
SPOTLIGHT OF THE WEEK
 
This week, our spotlight falls on a children’s fantasy that should NOT be viewed by children. WARNING PARENTS: Contains brutal, gory murders and torture.  
(O)   PAN’S LABYRINTH (New Line) Acclaimed Gillermo del Toro film in which a young girl finds herself caught between her brutal military commander father and desperate rebels during the Spanish Civil War and can only escape into a complex fantasy. Includes commentrak. 2-disc “Platinum” edition adds on featurettes, interviews, storyboards and more. 

NEW RELEASES

(O)   ARMY OF SHADOWS (Criterion) Jean-Pierre Melville’s great 1969 thriller about the French resistance during World War II. Includes commentrak, interviews, archival video, featurettes, booklet and more.
(O) ARTHUR & THE INVISIBLES (Weinstein) Freddie Highmore (Charlie And The Chocolate Factory) stars as Arthur, a brave young boy who must find a hidden treasure that will save his family's home. To do so, Arthur must enter the CGanime underground realm of the "Invisibles," tiny creatures who live beneath his own backyard. Directed by Luc Besson and based on his children’s book, with a celeb cast that includes Madonna, Robert De Niro, Mia Farrow, David Bowie, Jimmy Fallon, Anthony Anderson and Jason Bateman. Includes featurettes, music videos and more. Win one – details in this week’s
Anime Avalanche.
(O)   BANACEK First Season (Hart Sharp) Eight episodes from the 1972 series with George Peppard as a Polish private eye. Includes TV Guide crossword puzzles!
(O)   BEETLEJUICE (Warner Bros.) Yuppies Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis move into a house haunted by zany ghost Michael Keaton in Tim Burton’s hit 1988 comedy.
(O)   BLACK KISS (Media Blasters) A model witnesses a gory murder in this 2004 J-horror item (AKA Synchonicity).
(O)   BUNNY WHIPPED (THINKFilm) A sports writer becomes a masked vigilante in this romantic comedy starring Laz Alonso, Joey Lauren Adams and Rebecca Gayheart. With interviews.
(O)   CADDYSHACK (Warner Bros.) Classic comedy. See it with someone you love. 20th anniversary edition includes documentary, outtakes, interviews and more.
(O)   CATS & DOGS (Warner Bros.) Household pets secretly engage in an interspecies cold war. With commentrak, behind-the-scenes documentaries, storyboards, trivia and more.
(O)   COMIC BOOK SUPERHEROES UNMASKED (A&E) History Channel special documentary about superhero comics.
(O)   CREEPSHOW 3 (HBO) Long unawaited sequel to the ‘80s horror anthologies.
(O)   CURSE OF THE ZODIAC (Lionsgate) Ulli Lommel’s second movie about the Zodiac killer, with commentrak, bonus footage and more.
(O)   DENZEL WASHINGTON SPOTLIGHT COLLECTION (Universal) Includes The Bone Collector, The Hurricane, Inside Man and Mo’ Better Blues.
(O)   DUPLICITY (Warner Bros.) 2004 remake of Charade.
(O)   THE ESSENTIAL ERNEST COLLECTION (Mill Creek) Yes, essential. Includes Ernest Goes to Africa, Ernest’s Greatest Hits Volume 1 & 2, Ernest in the Army, Hey Vern It’s My Family Album and Your World As I See It.
(O)   THE FOUNTAIN (Warner Bros.) Hugh Jackman pursues his girlfriend Rachel Weisz throughout eternity in Darren Aronofsky’s fantasy. Widescreen & “fullscreen”  editions include 16 featurettes, interview, storyboards and more.
(O)   FULL METAL JACKET (Warner Bros.) Stanley Kubrick’s 1987 Vietnam War film.
(O)   GOODFELLAS (Warner Bros.) Martin Scorsese classic based on the biography of mobster Henry Hill.
(O)   THE GOONIES (Warner Bros.) 1985 Spielberg/Donner kid adventure.
(O)   THE GREEN MILE (Warner Bros.) 1999 supernatural prison drama with Tom Hanks.
(O)   GREMLINS (Warner Bros.) Joie Dante’s 1984 critter comedy.
(O)   HALF PAST DEAD 2 (Sony) Action sequel drops Steven Seagal from the cast and loads up on WWE wrestlers.
(O)   HEAT (Warner Bros.) Michael Mann’s 1995 heist flick.
(O)   JOHN WAYNE: THE EARLY YEARS (Mill Creek) John Wayne Month continues with the early serials Hurricane Express, Shadow of the Eagle and The Three Musketeers.
M*A*S*H: Goodbye, Farewell and Amen (Fox) It’s 1983 and the Korean War finally ends for the cast of the most successful war sitcom ever. Includes featurettes, trivia, bloopers, interviews and more.
(O)   MASTERS OF HORROR: Right to Die (Anchor Bay) Rob Schmidt (Wrong Turn) directs this tale of a woman horribly burned in a car wreck and her miraculously unhurt husband’s secret. Includes commentrak, Making-Of, storyboards and more.
(O)   THE MATRIX (Warner Bros.) Wachowski Bros. sci-fi action masterpiece.
(O)   MAXIMUM ERNEST (Mill Creek) Not essential. Includes Ernest in the Army, Hey Vern It’s My Family Album and Your World As I See It.
(O)   MEAN GUNS 20 Movie Pack (Mill Creek) Spaghetti heavy western set includes Any Gun Can Play, Boot Hill, Cry Blood Apache, Dan Candy's Law, Day of the Wolves, Dead Aim, Deadwood '76, Death Rides a Horse, Four Rode Out, God's Gun, The Hanged Man, Joshua, Kid Vengeance, Mad Dog Morgan, Savage Guns, Savage Journey, They Call Me Trinity, This Man Can't Die, Trinity and Sartana and Yuma.
(O)   NATURAL BORN KILLERS (Warner Bros.) Oliver Stone’s 1994 psychedelic crime spree romance epic.
(O)   THE OMEGA MAN (Warner Bros.) 1971 Charleton Heston remake of Last Man on Earth. Includes vintage Making-Of and more.
(O)   THE PERFECT STORM (Warner Bros.) 2000 storm at sea thriller.
(O)   PLAYBOY AFTER DARK Volume 2 (Playboy) Deep Purple, the Grateful Dead, The Miracles, Tony Bennet and more perform on Hugh Hefner’s 1969 TV show.
(O)   RAIDERS OF THE DAMNED (Image) Richard Grieco’s combat squad is sent to rescue a group of scientists from a countryside overrun with cannibal zombies. Includes commentrak and more.
(O)   ROCKFORD FILES Season Four (Universal) More episodes of the 1970s TV series about a low rent private eye.
(O)   SHAOLIN FAMILY SOCCER (Image) 2004 Hong Kong action comedy.
(O)   THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION (Warner Bros.) Frank Darabont’s 1994 prison mystery drama starring Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman.
(O)   THE SIEGE (Fox) “Martial Law” edition of the 1998 thriller in which FBI man Denzel Washington tries to take New York away from terrorists before Army general Bruce Willis destroys the city.
(O)   SON OF SWORDSMAN (Crash) 1969 Joseph Kuo Taiwanese epic
(O)   THE THIRST (Anchor Bay) Recovered drug addicts get hooked on blood instead by a nest of vampires. Includes commentrak.
(O)   TRUE ROMANCE (Warner Bros.) Young lovers Patricia Arquette and Christian Slater get mixed up with gangsters in this 1993 Tony Scott thriller scripted by Quentin Tarantino, with indulgent guest performances by Dennis Hopper, Gary Oldman, Val Kilmer, Brad Pitt and Christopher Walken.
(O)   ULTIMATE ERNEST (Mill Creek) Not maximum, and again not essential. Includes Ernest Goes to Africa, Ernest’s Greatest Hits Volume 1 & 2.
(O)   UNFORGIVEN (Warner Bros.) Clint Eastwood’s classic 1992 western won four Oscars.
(O)   VENGEANCE IS MINE (Criterion) Classic 1979 revenge thriller from Shohei Imamura. With interview, booklet and more.
(O)   THE VERY BEST OF ONE STEP BEYOND (Mill Creek) 50 episodes of the classic 1959 supernatural anthology TV series.
(O)   WANTED: DEAD OR ALIVE Season 2 (BCI Eclipse) Steve McQueen as a bounty hunter I the Old West.
 
BLU-RAY DISC CORNER

(O)   BATTLE OF THE BULGE (Warner Bros.)
(O)   THE FOUNTAIN (Warner Bros.) DVD combo.
(O)   THE ROAD WARRIOR (Warner Bros.) HD exclusive new director commentrak.

HD-DVD CORNER

(O)   BATTLE OF THE BULGE (Warner Bros.)
(O)   THE FOUNTAIN (Warner Bros.) DVD combo.
(O)   THE ROAD WARRIOR (Warner Bros.) HD exclusive new director commentrak.

NOT ON DVD CORNER
We welcome the input of Maniacs who want to share input on this section, where we highlight a different genre feature that has yet to come to digital disc format – just send your suggestions to DVD Shopping List in an email identified with “NOT ON DVD” in the subject line.   

(O)   MYSTERIOUS ISLAND (MGM? Kino? Image?) Based on slightly on Jules Verne, this 1929 sci-fi thriller stars Lionel Barrymore as the benevolent leader of an island nation who escapes a hostile coup on board a fantastic submarine, where he finds danger from underwater monsters and a race of pygmy gillmen! Colr prints remain lost, but the UCLA Archive has a print including a tinted reel and Technicolor sequences, while Forrest J Ackerman holds quite a bit of great material documenting the project. It’s a shame this classic sci-fi curiosity is NOT ON DVD.
 
 
And be sure to check back next week—and every week—for CINESCAPE’s DVD Shopping List! And don’t forget Anime Avalanche every Monday!
DVD Shopping List (© 2006 Brian Thomas) is our weekly DVD column. Brian Thomas is the author of the massive book VideoHound’s DRAGON: ASIAN ACTION & CULT FLICKS, available now!
 
Questions? Comments? Let us know what you think at DVD Shopping List.

COMMENTS AND RESPONSES

Showing items 1 - 2 of 2
1 
bjjdenver 5/15/2007 1:08:44 PM
Titles that jump at me from this list are: True Romance, great fun action wierdness, featuring great appearances by Christopher Walken, Gary Oldman and Brad Pitt as Floyd. It is must viewing. The Seige. I didn't see this movie until after 9/11 and watching it was kind of erie. It is very entertaining as a movie and very well acted by Denzel, Bruce, Annette Bening and especially Tony Shaloub. BUT, what makes the movie is the unbelievable paralells to future events (the film is from 1999). It amazed me that so much was known of the terrorist infrastructure, that a movie like this could be so accurate, yet our government (U.S.) allowed us to be such an easy target. Definitely a thought provoking drama.
bdd 5/15/2007 7:22:31 PM
The Seige came out in 1998. :) And it is a great movie, there are a few looking back that really show what we are living today.
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