Spirited Away: Live on Stage could’ve been made better by including the soundtrack like the box set anniversary releases, but that’s okay.
GKIDS & Shout! Factory Released Nov 14, 2023
Anyone who did not catch Spirited Away: Live on Stage can enjoy the best of both versions on home video! Although this release doesn’t contain any bonus features that look at behind the scenes, to have the two shows as played by Kanna Hashimoto and Mone Kamishiraishi in the title role, Chihiro, in one single release is a Ghibli fan’s dream release come true.
I wasn’t sure if this film would play in Canada, as locations and dates weren’t offered many weeks in advance. Thankfully, Cineplex eventually added more screenings which included my home town, but I was in Seattle that weekend. I didn’t plan to visit the States just to get my Ghibli fix–it was pure luck that I was at the right place and right time. What was presented at the Regal and where I sat made me feel like I had a front row seat to a live show rather than something broadcasted on a screen. My experience can be read here.
The Star Trek: Picard Legacy Collection is huge, and for anyone new to Star Trek: The Next Generation, and wants to follow everything this captain (wonderfully played by Sir Patrick Stewart) has done, it’s the perfect jumping in point! Not everyone will have grown up watching this franchise’s best comeback. Without it, the subsequent series would not have been created. We have Deep Space Nine, Voyager, Enterprise, Discovery, Strange New Worlds, Prodigy and so on. Although not every series was made avaiilable on Blu-ray, that’s the hope most long time fans crave.
In this release, all the episodes are identified on the sleeve that makes up each case. Each plastic enclosure is sturdy, and although I’d be tempted to put the series into a binder, I don’t need to rush to do that. The discs aren’t that hard to remove, and instead of forcing, I gently tugged.
And as my unboxing video shows (featured below), there’s lots of design and packaging aesthetics to like. After sitting down to view the remasters, the details are far better than what I recall from my television viewing days. Although Blu-ray isn’t as forgiving with the bits of blue screening used, some suspension of belief is required.
Anyone with a fear of centipedes is best advised to look away than watch this latest Thai film brought to America. Creepy Crawly (original title is The One Hundred) is an effective story about how to survive an infestation. And as for whether anyone will develop a phobia afterwards, thankfully it’s all CGI! However, the next time I see a giant sized multi-legged terror coming at me, I’m still going to run away!
After Kat encounters a multi-legged fright in the jungles of Cambodia, the setup isn’t too hard to figure out. While searching for a forgotten camp site for her video blog, meets an old lady looking very worse for wear, and presumedly is lost. Later at night, she’s found an area to make camp and after getting frightened by a single caterpillar falling into her tent, the Evil Dead vibe got my imagination going. When that person she met before shows her true colours that’s an image that’ll haunt my dreams for a few days!
Although the movies of yesteryears are largely forgotten by today’s audiences, some movies like The Giant Gila Monster Special Edition (and Killer Shrews) are worth revisiting.
The B movies of the 50s almost always have a familiar formula to them: they’re often populated with rock n roll teens getting into crazy situations and feature giant monsters. It’s a formula that works and despite the bad acting or lacklustre direction. And whether fans of today can appreciate them, it depends more on getting introduced to the film. Thankfully Film Masters 4k restoration and release of The Giant Gila Monster Special Edition (and Killer Shrews) proves that we don’t need MST3K to discover them.
Sometimes we hear that at the theatre anyways when there’s a rowdy group attending. At home, we can avoid that and admire just why these two films have a modern cult following. It’s not so much about why they are reflective of the era and how teens and adults behave way back when. instead it’s about how they react is nothing like modern horror. I get amused when they’re more golly gee, and dare to take on the threats. Whether they die isn’t the question.
Thankfully fans can view Star Trek Prodigy in full with the home video release that’s coming tomorrow! It’s certainly worth binging on to recall everything this misfit crew has gone through in attempting to reach The Federation.
Release Date: Sept 26, 2023
Star Trek Prodigy Season 1 – Episodes 11-20 will soon beam onto home video since it’s no longer on available on Paramount’s streaming service. As expected, the presentation is very crisp and we have a definitive look into the season with the featurettes offered. As for whether more episodes will broadcast on Nickelodeon, who helped produce it, nobody truly knows. Not even Admiral Janeway (Kate Mulgrew) is certain.
Thankfully for this series to boldly go where no series has gone before means the finished first half of season two must play somewhere. Hopefully, sales of this release will show many fans love this series, and the dollar signs will motivate the Hageman Brothers to push for getting their finished batch of season two episodes aired!
In what this release offers is further sub-adventures with Dal R’El (Brett Gray), Gwyndala (Ella Purnell), Jankom (Jason Mantzoukas), Rok-Tahk (Rylee Alazraqui), Zero (Angus Imrie), and Murf (Dee Bradley Baker) before finally arriving in the Alpha quadrant. Just how this set shows them finally arriving, and encountering The Federation certainly reveals tension, and as for what happens next, I wish I had a looking glass to tell me what the fate is for this series.