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Independence Week

Be careful out there

By BRIAN THOMAS     July 03, 2007


DRIVE-IN HORRORS SERIES Volume 1
© Westlake
Last week I wrote about DVD releases reaching a saturation point. Somebody must have been paying attention because this week they’re down to a trickle. Either that, or nobody wants to spend a holiday shipping discs.

Well, I hope you all are enjoying it. Raise your hands if you get the day off today. Raise ‘em again if you’re spending the whole day watching DVDs. Now, Bang on this column if you’re going to see Transformers today.
 
SPOTLIGHT OF THE WEEK
 
This week, we continue to recommend watching movies outside. Here’s two to disturb the neighborsa..

(O)   DRIVE-IN HORRORS SERIES Volume 1 (Westlake) Includes the gruesome ghost movie Savage Spirit, plus the creature feature They Feed.

NEW RELEASES
(O)   BAA BAA BLACK SHEEP Volume 2 (Universal) Three discs.
(O)   BATTLESPACE
(Maverick) After the destruction of much of the galaxy, a stranded military officer ona rugged planet discovers a weapon of mass destruction set to destroy her home planet in less than 42 hours.
(O)   BELLS OF DEATH
(Image) Chang Yi in a 1968 Shaw Bros. Hong Kong action flick.
(O)   THE BEST OF LAUREL & HARDY
(MVD) Collection includes “Hustling for Health”, “The Paperhanger’s Helper”, “A Lucky Dog”, “The Soldiers” and “Roughest Africa”.
(O)   THE CRADLE
(Peacearch/Genius) Lukas Haas heads into a family curse when he movies his brood into a sinister small town.  
(O)   DAY OF THE AX
(Brain Damage) Old fashioned slasher flick. Includes commentrak, documentary and more.
(O)   DEAD MAN’S HAND: CASINO OF THE DAMNED
(Full Moon) Evil dead haunt an old Vegas casino.
(O)
   DEAD TEENAGERS (Brain Damage) Horror anthology found in the pages of a mysterious library book.
(O)   EARTHSTORM (First Look) The Earth is about to be destroyed, and still our priority is to get Stephen Balwin off the planet.
(O)   EDGAR ALLAN POE’S DARKNESS (Brain Damage) Supernatural trouble plagues a theater performing works based on Poe. Includes commentrak, Making-Of and more.
(O)   EROTIC GHOST STORY (Tai Seng) Amy Yip in a 1990 adaptation of a famous Chinese ghost tale. Delayed from last week.
(O)   EUREKA Season One (Universal) Three disc set collects the first twelve episodes of this Sci Fi Channel series that tries to be charmingly quirky. It’s about a small town that’s secretly headquarters to a top think tank and their far-out inventions.
(O)   4 LIFE (Vivendi) Tough urban action.
(O)   GENE AUTREY COLLECTION: Twilight on the Rio Grande (Image)
(O)   GHOULIES 4 (Echo Bridge) 1994 unwanted sequel.
(O)   GRANNY (Brain Damage) Senior serial killer with an ax.
(O)   GRINDHOUSE DOUBLE FEATURE: BLACK CANDLES / EVIL EYE (BCI Eclipse) José Ramon Larraz 1982 Spanish horror and Mario Siciliano’s 1974 spaghetti dreadful were both common in both grindhouses and mom & pop video stores.
(O)   GRINDHOUSE DOUBLE FEATURE: PICK-UP / THE TEACHER (BCI Eclipse) A pair of sleazy exploitation items from the mid-1970s that I might have seen at the drive-in.
(O)   MUMMY MANIAC (Lionsgate) Serial killer wraps up and preserves remains of victims.
(O)   NEVERWAS (Miramax) Aaron Eckhart finds out his childhood fantasyland may really exist.
(O)   ROCKETMAN (Buena Vista) 1997 attempt to make Harland Williams a star (ala Don Knotts) has him accidentally included on a mission to Mars.
(O)   RUN SWINGER RUN / SEX CLUB INTERNATIONAL (Image) A pair of loony 1960s sexploitation flicks from Barry Mahon and Something Weird Video.
(O)   SODOM THE KILLER (Media Blasters) Bloody Japanese psycho revenge drama.
(O)   STEPHEN KING 4-pack (MGM) Includes Carrie Special Edition, Needful Things, The Dark Half and Misery.
(O)   UFO: TARGET EARTH (MVD) 1974 cheapie in which a small town comes to believe they’re all suffering from alien-induced amnesia.
(O)   WHAT THE PEEPER SAW (MVD) 1972 UK horror with Britt Eklund battling her evil little stepson. Also includes the uncut UK version Night Child.
(O)   WITH YOU (Passion River) Haunted house chiller


HD-DVD CORNER

(O)   BLOOD DIAMOND (Warner Bros.) Includes commentrak, Making-Of featurettes, music video and more.
(O)   THE UNTOUCHABLES (Paramount) With featurettes.
(O)   THE WARRIORS (Paramount) “Ultimate director’s cut” includes four featurettes.
 
BLU-RAY DISC CORNER

(O)   FLATLINERS (Sony)
(O)   THE PATRIOT
(Sony) Extended cut plus two featurettes.
(O)   THE UNTOUCHABLES (Paramount)  With featurettes
(O)   THE WARRIORS (Paramount) “Ultimate director’s cut” includes four featurettes.
 
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 toDVD Shopping Listin an email identified with “NOT ON DVD” in the subject line.   

(O)   THE KEEP (Paramount?) This 1983 Michael Mann horror feature has been announced for DVD release a couple times I the past few years, only to be inevitably delayed. The studio forced Mann to edit down his original cut to almost half its length, and the fantasy about an evil entity plaguing an ancient fortress occupies by Nazi troops was released in a much impaired form to an indifferent public. At least one fan has been keeping the faith, hoping that Paramount will restore the director’s cut for DVD release. But so far nothing. Possibly due to rights issues over the Tangerine Dream soundtrack, The Keep remains NOT ON DVD.


 
ANIME ADDITIONS
And finally, we close off each weekly list with a rundown of the constant stream of anime from around the world:

(O)   AYAKASHI SAMURAI HORROR TALES: Volume 2: Yotsuya Ghost Story
(Geneon) Anime horror anthology based on famous ghost tales.
(O)   BATFINK Complete Series
(Shout Factory) Silly 1967 cartoon superhero from Hal Seeger Productions inspired by ‘60s Batmania. Includes all 100 shorts.
(O)   THE BEST OF BRAVESTARR
(BCI Eclipse) Includes the feature Bravestarr: The Legend.
(O)   BLUE’S CLUES: Blue’s Room / Little Blue Riding Hood
(Nickelodeon/Paramount) Blue experiences some pelvic congestion.
(O)   BOBOBO-BO BO-BOBO Volume 3: Gasser Up!
(Westlake) Episodes 9-12. This silly series has totally lost me.
(O)   B’T X Volume 2: Deadly Alliance
(Westlake) Episodes 5-8.
(O)   DORA THE EXPLORER: Summer Explorer
(Paramount) Four episodes plus ice cream masking featurette.
(O)   FILMATION’S GHOSTBUSTERS Volume 2
(BCI Eclipse) 5-disc final volume.
(O)   GHOST IN THE SHEL SAC: Solid State Society
(Manga/Bandai/Starz/Anchor Bay) Two years after the Major retires, Section 9 has to deal with the return of the Puppeteer. Includes “Uchikomatic Days” shorts and more. Also available in a limited edition with featurettes, interviews and more.
(O)   GIRLS HIGH VOLUME TEEN SPIRIT Volume 1
(Media Blasters) High school comedy drama.
(O)   GO DIEGO GO!: Ready, Set, Go!
(Paramount) I wanna go fast.
(O)   GRAVION Complete Collection
(ADV)
(O)   HELLO KITTY STUMP VILLAGE Volume 5
(Geneon) A theater is constructed inside a hollow candy tree.
(O)   THE MELANCHOLY OF HARUHI SUZUMIYA Volume 2
(Bandai) Comedy/Action/Mystery/Sci-Fi. Limited edition includes Maling-Of and more.
(O)   SHANA Volume 6
(Geneon) The Ball Masque's horrific plans come to fruition, spelling the end for everyone in Misaki City. Includes video extras.
(O)   STRAWBERRY MARSHMALLOW Complete Box Set
(Geneon) All 12 episodes.
(O)   UFO ULTRAMAIDEN VALKYRIE Season 3 Volume 2: Time Trippin’ Terror and Wedding Woes
(ADV) More chaotic sci-fi romantic comedy.
(O)   ZIPANG Volume 6: Target Mirai
(Geneon) The Mirai faces a raid by forty US warplanes.

Be sure to check back next week—and every week—for Mania’s DVD Shopping List!
DVD Shopping List (© 2007 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 7/3/2007 11:55:02 AM
Gotta love Baa, Baa Blacksheep! loved that show when I was a kid!!
lister 7/3/2007 12:37:23 PM
"Bang"s are dumb.
1 

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