Tag Archives: Blu-ray Review

Dancing with Inu-Oh on Home Video!

26 Jan

The home video release of Inu-Oh is here! Not only can I finally learn about Masaaki Yuasa‘s thought process, but also learn more about the elements I didn’t notice in my early viewing. Instead of reviewing the entire film again (it can be read here) with this additional knowledge, what I’ll explore is the bonus material. This filmmaker has been on my radar since discovering Lu Over the Wall; on television, he directed Devilman Crybaby.

After he named one of my favourite bands, Queen, as a key influence, I knew I was dead on with one musical montage in this film. He also explained why American and the history of music’s greatest moments are important to the crafting of this film. From The Beatles to Jimi Hendrix to Michael Jackson, a signature moment was actually snuck into the work, and that alone is enough reason to watch Inu-Oh multiple times. Not only can fans seek these frames out, but also they can listen for it too. Although Hendrix’s moment is with an action and we are told where it is, I have to search for the other easter eggs.

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Korean Epic Hansan-Rising Dragon Isn’t Sailing Away Yet

22 Nov
Hansan-Rising Dragon

Available to watch on Amazon Prime or order

Well GO USA

One doesn’t need to be a student of Korean history to enjoy Hansan-Rising Dragon (한산: 용의 출현), the prequel to the 2014 movie, The Admiral-Roaring Currents (명량). This cinematic treatment about the historical Battle of Hansando during the last dynastic period of this country is epic. Those able to see it on the big screen in either IMAX or 4DX format are lucky. To witness the oceanic battles in the Yellow Sea must be quite the spectacle.

The tale here concerns figuring out what the next best tactical advance is. Admiral Yi is wounded, and his fleet is facing the might of the invading Japanese navy. His only defence is whether the turtle ships he has to command are fit to oppose. His advisors don’t want to see him in the field all the time.

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loundraw’s Summer Ghost Lingers into Home Video

2 Nov

GKIDS & Shout! Factory

Even though Halloween is over, Summer Ghost (サマーゴースト) is here to stay. The home video release the day after feels appropriate to show how those emotions can linger on. This Japanese animated short film is about what it means to be alive instead of the opposite. Each of the heroes here are seeking the spirit of a girl and hope to “get advice” on how to carry on.

This short animated film produced by Flat Studio and directed by loundraw is wonderful. The home video release has two documentaries included which look behind the scenes of this anime, and an interview with the director himself. They help expand what’s already known, assuming viewers watched the film first, and perhaps learn something more. It’s terrific to revisit this anime I saw during Fantasia, and to see how close I was to understanding this director’s vision. That review can be read here.

The former focuses on the team discussing how they look up to the loundraw. They often say he’s like a big brother, which is a touching gesture. This individual made his debut as an illustrator for Gara Nagata’s Hoshi no Nemuru Mizuumi e -Ai wo Sagashi ni- before spreading his wings and now becoming a director. If the dialogue is any sign, there’ll be more stories to come.

With the second piece, loundraw reveals where his idea came from, the type of colour template used and much more. It’s definitely worth the watch after the film, and it certainly made me appreciate Summer Ghost a lot more. Despite the title of this work and when it’s been released to home video (and theatrical), it’s quite the post-Halloween treat. In fact, this work is very appropriate to release during the week when Día de Muertos takes place! Both this anime and celebration honours the afterlife, and I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s the reason why this release was timed for this week.

Summer Ghost Official Trailer

Crane Wilbur’s “The Bat” and Clinging to the Classics

29 Oct
The Bat

Available to order on Amazon USA

The Film Detective

During the Silent Film era, Crane Wilbur was well known for his wide variety of works, namely The Perils of Pauline. But for horror enthusiasts, he’ll always be remembered for House of Wax. Before this film was ever made, he worked with Vincent Prince on The Bat, a crime-thriller.

The mini-documentary included in this release is a love letter to the auteur, and his relationship with this actor. After viewing the featurette that explains his influence on scary cinema, I think I’ll have to start looking at those films rarely spoken of today. Ballyhoo Motion Pictures presented a very convincing argument in why we must respect this filmmaker’s other works.

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E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial is 40-Years Old and Regarding Its Anniversary Re-Release!

25 Oct

The Extra-Terrestrial is 40-Years OldAlso playing at Victoria IMAX Oct 27-31.

It’s hard to believe E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial is 40-years old. This movie was developed hot after Close Encounters of a Third Kind, and to say it belongs in the same universe is a feasible fan theory. To say this has been confirmed isn’t in the new featurettes in this celebratory re-release, but I get the sense that Spielberg would be okay with it. He interest in UFOlogy may have been limited to these two films, but when we consider his War of the Worlds adaptation, the idea does fall apart.

Anyone who didn’t purchase the prior versions isn’t missing much. I could have picked up the 35th anniversary release, which had a 4K restoration, but I don’t always count this year as a seminal milestone. This latest release does one better, and it’s all in the two new featurettes made for this release. In terms of collectables, the ultimate set (available on Amazon USA) offers a collectible tin tote, thermos, booklet and Certificate of Authenticity for the die-hard collector to proudly display. Another release adds a Bendy Figs figurine for Walmart, and the Steelbook updates the art (Target). Anyone wanting either just needs to ask a friend in the States to buy or one can order online.

All the material from prior releases (deleted scenes, the evolution, and creation of E.T., and 20th anniversary premiere) are offered in this collection. The old content are:

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