Antonio Margheriti’s Battle of the Worlds. A Throwback to 60s Sci Fi on Home Video

14 Aug

Release Date: August 9.

The science fiction movies made nearly a half century ago are very different from what we find today. When Battle of the Worlds was released 1961, it wasn’t well received. But when we flash forward to today and look at it from a film historian’s perspective, it has a place in the lexicon worth noting.

The Film Detective was able to make a 4k scan of the original 35mm archival print, and release it as a Bluray. The transfer is only as good as the source material, and therein lies a problem. Watching is is no different from watching it on the big screen back then. There’s a lot of noticable film grain depending on the lighting situation. But as for giving new life to the story, it’s a tough sell.

This movie by Antonio Margheriti isn’t a blip in the radar. Although the direction and tale is very oblique, to watch it from a modern perspective suggests we’ve been spoiled. We get lots of glamour and glitz, and often forget that a solid plot matters a lot more. When compared to other movies made a decade or two later, like Battle Beyond the Stars instead of Battle of the Planets (a completely different genre), budgets matter. And as for where that money is spent by indie filmmakers determines how well their works are remembered.

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A Silent Voice The Movie 5th Anniversary SteelBook Release Details

14 Aug

A Silent VoiceIn celebration of the film’s fifth Anniversary release in the U.S., Eleven Arts and Shout! Factory will release A Silent Voice The Movie in Limited Edition SteelBook™ packaging with striking new art on October 18, 2022. The highly collectible limited edition SteelBook™ contains a Blu-ray™+DVD combo, featuring an exciting movie presentation with an English dub and in Japanese with English subtitles, and insightful bonus content.

A must-own for anime enthusiasts and pop culture movie collectors, this upcoming limited edition release is available for pre-order now at ShoutFactory.com. Fans who order this special SteelBook™ release from Shout! Factory will receive an exclusive poster while supplies last.

This movie comes from the lauded director Naoko Yamada (Liz and the Blue Bird) and writer Reiko Yoshida (The House of the Lost on the Cape). Based on the popular manga by Yoshitoki Oima, this film is a gorgeous anime film with a powerful message about bullying, depression, and forgiveness. The moving coming-of-age drama depicts the struggles of adolescence through its memorable characters and stunning animation.

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[Interview] Songbirds. More Than Just A Museum Displaying Priceless Electric Guitars….

12 Aug

SongbirdsAvailable to rent on Amazon Prime and other streaming platforms.

Now available on VOD is Songbirds, a wonderful documentary about a museum (named after this bird) dedicated to showing how the electric guitar became what it is today. It’s about the people who built this place to what it is now, how the pandemic affected its business model, its closure and when it rose from the ashes like a phoenix to become something even better!

Their goal is to do more than showcase the history and influence of this instrument in 20th century music. Within its doors, people could play with the instruments (after paying a fee), and attend special concerts from those musicians who long to touch that first production telecaster. In its latest form, it’s to teach young children how to play too!

Dagan W. Beckett (pictured below, left) is the creative mind who made this one-hour length film. His love for this establishment is clearly evident from the first frame to last. He delivers not only a beautiful look back at this place’s founding but also hits all the right notes (pardoning the pun) to show us why more places like this need to exist around the world. Dagon BeckettBut even I had a few questions just to confirm a few lingering thoughts. It was a pleasure to correspond with him about this work.

Can we please have an introduction from you for those readers unfamiliar with your work?

I am a filmmaker/director currently located in Chattanooga, Tennessee which is just North of Atlanta. The documentary film, Songbirds, is my debut work and my team and I are so very fortunate to have received a handful of awards for it, as well as an Emmy® for best Topical Documentary.

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From Frightful Predator to Prey, A Comic Book Reader’s Perspective on ther Prequel

12 Aug

Prey Movie PosterSpoiler Alert

Anyone who read Dark Horse Comics‘ Predator series (1989-2020) will be familiar with where Prey is headed. The thought of sending one of these hunters to Earth’s distant past is nothing new, and I’ve read enough of this run to know those times where they’ve intruded upon the past, ranging from 1718 to WW1, is often a bloodbath. No matter which civilization they meet, making peace with this alien species is nearly impossible.

In one corner of the confrontation is the said Predator and the other, a Comanche tribe. Caught in the crossfire are French fur traders, and I had to chuckle. The era this tale is set in is sometime during colonisation, and the land is more than a little wild. Its downright dangerous, as viewers will soon discover. Sometimes, these tales involve two differenct factions having to work together to succeed, but when we’re dealing with a franchise dealing with people dying, nobodhy is going to win! Fans must not forget the Predator usually makes situations worse for the heroes. They are often dealing with other threats and to save their own skin is the least of their worries!

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Ancient Explorers: The Lost City of Peru and The Man Behind the Legend Quest

10 Aug

Omar Mara

People who attended SDCC a few weekends ago had plenty to look at. Whether that’d be comic books or the latest news on movies, there’s even something for the jungle explorer! Ancient Explorers: The Lost City of Peru is novel – comic book hybrid about two best friends on the quest for adventure! Together with two archaeologists, they discover an ancient map and a compass that’ll point them to more than adventure, but also self-discovery.

It’s now available across various platforms to read, and we at otakunoculture.com got a chance to talk to the author:

Could you please introduce yourself to readers unfamiliar with your work?

My name is Omar Mora. I am a writer, producer and actor from Puerto Rico who lives in Los Angeles. I have written two independent feature films; 30 Days with my brother and Inside the Circle. Both available on VOD. I have written a series of comics called The Unearthians. You can find my work at MorasProductions.com

What made you decide to create a hybrid written work with graphic novel elements? (and was it difficult to decide what parts of the narrative should be illustrated rather than described?)

When Covid came, so did the economy. Producing a comic is expensive, so the finances weren’t quite right. So we decided to do it as a hybrid. And to be honest it was the best decision. Because the design of the book along with the comic pages looks great and gives a special touch to the story. I am very happy with the final results.

It was not difficult to choose which pages were going to be comics. I usually chose pages that introduced a character, a very important aspect of the story, or fantasy elements that I knew would look amazing as art. I also wanted to choose pages that would help create intrigue in the story and create that suspense necessary for the reader to be engaged.

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