Blu-Ray Spotlight: The Wizard of Oz

Wizard of Oz (4K Ultra HD + Blu-Ray + Digital)

About the release:
1939’s acclaimed and beloved classic The Wizard of Oz will be released on Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack and Digital on October 29th. .

Adapted from L. Frank Baum’s timeless children’s tale about a Kansas girl’s journey over the rainbow, The Wizard of Oz officially premiered at Grauman’s Chinese Theater on August 15, 1939. The film was directed by Victor Fleming (who that same year directed Gone With the Wind), produced by Mervyn LeRoy, and scored by Herbert Stothart, with music and lyrics by Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg. Ray Bolger appeared as the Scarecrow; Bert Lahr as the Cowardly Lion, Jack Haley as the Tin Woodman. Frank Morgan was seen in six different roles, including that of the “wonderful Wizard” himself. Dorothy was portrayed by a 4’11” sixteen year old girl who quickly earned her reputation as “the world’s greatest entertainer”– the incomparable Judy Garland.

The Wizard of Oz will be available on Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack for $41.99 SRP and features an Ultra HD Blu-ray disc with the feature film in 4K with HDR and a Blu-ray disc of The Wizard of Oz. Fans can also own The Wizard of Oz in 4K Ultra HD via purchase from select digital retailers beginning on October 29th.

Additionally, moviegoers will be able to experience the magic of The Wizard of Oz like never before, remastered in Dolby Vision with incredible color and brightness, exclusively at select Dolby Cinema locations from October 25 to October 31.

Review:
This is a really fun release. There are a ton of extras I hadn’t seen before. I really enjoyed “the Making of.” And the 4K quality is better than I thought possible on my large TV. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever even seen it on such a large screen. This is a fantastic version of a beloved family classic. It’s a great story for all ages. I can’t believe I haven’t owned this film before, despite watching it numerous times.

Ultra HD Blu-ray and Blu-ray Elements:
The Wizard of Oz Ultra HD Blu-ray contains the following previously released special features:
• Commentary by John Fricke with Barbara Freed-Saltzman, Margaret Hamilton, Ray Bolger, Jack Haley, John Lahr, Jane Lahr, Hamilton Meserve, Dona Massin, William Tuttle, Buddy Ebsen, Mervyn LeRoy and Jerry Maren.
• 1990 CBS Special “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: The Making of a Movie Classic.”

The Wizard of Oz Blu-ray contains the following previously released special features:
• Commentary- Commentary by John Fricke with Barbara Freed-Saltzman, Margaret Hamilton, Ray Bolger, Jack Haley, John Lahr, Jane Lahr, Hamilton Meserve, Dona Massin, William Tuttle, Buddy Ebsen, Mervyn LeRoy and Jerry Maren
• The Making of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
• The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Storybook (narrated by Angela Lansbury)
• We Haven’t Really Met Properly…
– We Haven’t Really Met Properly: “Frank Morgan”
– We Haven’t Really Met Properly: “Ray Bolger”
– We Haven’t Really Met Properly: “Bert Lahr”
– We Haven’t Really Met Properly: “Jack Haley”
– We Haven’t Really Met Properly: “Billie Burke”
– We Haven’t Really Met Properly: “Margaret Hamilton”
– We Haven’t Really Met Properly: “Charley Grapewin”
– We Haven’t Really Met Properly: “Clara Blandick”
– We Haven’t Really Met Properly: “Terry”
• Music & Effects Track
• Original Mono Track
• Sing Along Tracks
• Audio Jukebox
• Leo is on the Air Radio Promo
• Good News of 1939 Radio Show
• 12/25/1950 Lux Radio Broadcast
• Stills Galleries
– Oz on Broadway
– Pre-MGM
– Sketches and Storyboards
– Richard Thorpe’s Oz
– Buddy Ebsen
– Oz Comes to Life
– Behind the Scenes
– Portraits
– Special Effects
– Post Production
– Deleted Scenes
– Original Publicity
– 8/15/1939 Hollywood Premiere
– 8/17/1939 New York Premiere
– 2/29/1940 Academy Awards® Ceremony
– Oz Abroad
– Oz Revivals
• Trailers

Blu-Ray Spotlight: Galaxy Quest 20th Anniversary Edition

Galaxy Quest 20th Anniversary Steelbook

Galaxy Quest Arrives in a Blu-ray™ Steelbook For the First Time on October 22, 2019

About the release:
By Grabthar’s hammer, the intrepid crew of the NSEA Protector is back to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the uproarious classic GALAXY QUEST, arriving in our solar system October 22, 2019 in a Limited Collector’s Edition Blu-ray Steelbook from Paramount Home Entertainment.

Featuring an out-of-this-world all-star cast including Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, Tony Shalhoub, Sam Rockwell, Enrico Colantoni, Daryl Mitchell and Justin Long, this rollicking send-up of sci-fi fanaticism is as funny today as it was when it premiered in theaters 20 years ago.

The Limited Collector’s Edition Blu-ray Steelbook includes:
• Galactopedia—On-screen information about characters, ships, aliens and more
• Historical Documents: The Story of Galaxy Quest—Cast and filmmakers discuss how the film came together
• Never Give Up, Never Surrender: The Intrepid Crew of the NSEA Protector—Celebrates the incredibly talented cast
• By Grabthar’s Hammer, What Amazing Effects—Explores the effects by ILM and Stan Winston
• Alien School—Creating the Thermian Race—Actor Enrico Colantoni’s process of developing the voice and manner of an alien race
• Actors in Space—Delves into the psyche of the cast
• Sigourney Weaver Raps— Needs no further explanation
• Deleted Scenes
• Theatrical Trailer

I watched this new edition with my nieces. And despite the out-dated special effects, the film holds up and they loved it almost as much as I did. Though, it was hard not to quote the entire movie while watching. I enjoyed the extras too, especially the deleted scenes. And with the documentary releasing next month, this is a timely release to usher in a new generation of fans.

Blu Ray Review: Godzilla: King of the Monsters

Godzilla: King of the Monsters

Synopsis:
The new story follows the heroic efforts of the crypto-zoological agency Monarch as its members face off against a battery of god-sized monsters, including the mighty Godzilla, who collides with Mothra, Rodan and his ultimate nemesis, the three-headed Ghidorah. When these ancient super-species (thought to be mere myths) rise again, they all vie for supremacy, leaving humanity’s very existence hanging in the balance.

Review:
I haven’t seen the 2014 Godzilla film, but there was a nice recap at the beginning to catch us up. I actually only watched this one because I heard there will be a crossover with King Kong (from Kong: Skull Island) in the next installment of these monster movies. I loved Kong: Skull Island, but this had a much different feel.

I’m not a particular fan of Godzilla, but I enjoyed this film. Where Skull Island was full of suspense and humor, this installment is much more dramatic and intense. These monsters are on a completely different scale. The cinematography and CGI is impressive. And there is a good story beyond just the monster fighting, as well as interesting characters. Millie Bobby Brown was fantastic, of course. The big showdown is over-the-top and a lot of fun. And the post-credit scene made me excited for the next film.

4K, BLU-RAY AND DVD ELEMENTS

“Godzilla: King of the Monsters” 4K UHD Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD Special Edition contain the following special features:
• Commentary by Director
• Godzilla: Nature’s Fearsome Guardian
• Mothra: Queen of the Monsters
• King Ghidorah: The Living Extinction Machine
• Rodan: Airborne God of Fire
• Godzilla 2.0
• Making Morthra
• Creating Ghidorah
• Reimagining Rodan
• The Yunnan Temple
• Castle Bravo
• The Antarctic Base
• The Isla de Mara Volcano
• The Undersea Lair
• Millie Bobby Brown: Force of Nature
• Monster Tech: Monarch Joins the Fight
• Monsters Are Real
• Welcome to the Monsterverse
• Deleted Scenes

Blu-Ray Review: Avengers Endgame

Marvel Studios' Avengers: Endgame | Bloopers

Bloopers Clip

Avengers Endgame [Blu-ray]

Synopsis:
Adrift in space with no food or water, Tony Stark sends a message to Pepper Potts as his oxygen supply starts to dwindle. Meanwhile, the remaining Avengers – Thor, Black Widow, Captain America and Bruce Banner – must figure out a way to bring back their vanquished allies for an epic showdown with Thanos – the evil demigod who decimated the planet and the universe.

Review:
Marvel films, especially the Avengers, have culminated to this film. Infinity War left off in possibly the biggest cliffhanger ever – with half of the universe turned to dust. Now, the original Avengers, War Machine, Captain Marvel, Rocket, and Nebula decide to go after Thanos and use the Infinity Stones to bring everyone back. But things (obviously) don’t go as planned.

While this film has an insanely large cast of characters, the main story predominantly focuses on the original Avengers – their lives post-snap and their search for a way to undo what Thanos did. Some stay the course, some lose themselves, and some just decide to move on. It’s intriguing and heartbreaking. At 3 hours long, it seems like there would be slow times. But it actually felt crammed full of action, suspense, drama, and still plenty of humor. The surprising timeline builds to an epic final battle and a sweet, heartwarming tribute with a wonderful send-off to some beloved characters. This is a superhero movie worth watching over and over.

BONUS MATERIAL (may vary by retailer):
Digital Exclusive:
• Steve and Peggy: One Last Dance – Explore Captain America and Peggy Carter’s bond, forged in moments from previous films that lead to a momentous choice in “Avengers: Endgame.”
Blu-ray & Digital:
• Remembering Stan Lee – Filmmakers and cast honor the great Stan Lee in a fond look back at his MCU movie cameos.
• Setting The Tone: Casting Robert Downey Jr. – Hear the tale of how Robert Downey Jr. was cast as Tony Stark in the original “Iron Man” — and launched the MCU.
• A Man Out of Time: Creating Captain America – Trace the evolution of Captain America with those who helped shape the look, feel and character of this compelling hero.
• Black Widow: Whatever It Takes – Follow Black Widow’s journey both within and outside the Avengers, including the challenges she faced and overcame along the way.
• The Russo Brothers: Journey to Endgame – See how Anthony and Joe Russo met the challenge of helming two of the biggest films in cinematic history … back-to-back!
• The Women of the MCU – MCU women share what it was like to join forces for the first time in an epic battle scene — and be part of such a historic ensemble.
• Bro Thor – His appearance has changed but his heroism remains! Go behind the scenes to see how Bro Thor was created.
• Six Deleted Scenes – “Goji Berries,” “Bombs on Board,” “Suckiest Army in the Galaxy,” “You Used to Frickin’ Live Here,” “Tony and Howard” and “Avengers Take a Knee.”
• Gag Reel – Laugh along with the cast in this epic collection of flubs, goofs and gaffes from set.
• Visionary Intro – Intro by directors Joe and Anthony Russo.
• Audio Commentary – Audio commentary by directors Anthony and Joe Russo, and writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely.

DVD Review: Manifest: The Complete First Season

Manifest: The Complete First Season
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the DVD. I reviewed in this post. The opinions I share are my own.

Synopsis:
A plane inexplicably disappears on a trans-oceanic flight and returns five years later after being presumed lost at sea. While no time has passed for those on the flight, years have gone by for their loved ones who have learned to live with their loss. In addition to the outward mystery of what happened on that flight, there’s also an inward mystery of what has happened to the passengers…and why. Nothing will ever be the same as you follow the unexpected journey full of hope, heart and destiny!

Own Manifest: The Complete First Season on DVD July 23rd.

Review:
At first, this series feels like a slightly less complicated version of The 4400. However, the Manifest returnees don’t have cool abilities other than a creepy version of their own voice giving them cryptic warnings of the future. But I enjoy the mysterious premise.

After the first few episodes, I got bored with the characters and storyline. There are 16 episodes with the story stretched a bit too thin. And far too little character development. However, in the 3rd part of the season, the excitement picks up with the introduction of a new important character and young Cal’s connection to some returnees who have been abducted.

I like the actors and their various characters. How the returnees are treated after their return is very dramatic and realistic. And there is quite a bit of intensity and danger looming. There’s still a big mystery of what happened to the returnees and the tension is only building. I look forward to season 2.

Blu-Ray Review: Shazam!

Shazam! (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Combo Pack)
Own Shazam! on 4K UHD Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD Special Edition on July 16, or Own It Early on Digital on July 2.

Synopsis:
We all have a superhero inside us, it just takes a bit of magic to bring it out. In Billy Batson’s case, by shouting out one word—SHAZAM!—this streetwise 14-year-old foster kid can turn into the adult Super Hero Shazam, courtesy of an ancient wizard. Still a kid at heart—inside a ripped, godlike body—Shazam revels in this adult version of himself by doing what any teen would do with superpowers: have fun with them! Can he fly? Does he have X-ray vision? Can he shoot lightning out of his hands? Can he skip his social studies test? Shazam sets out to test the limits of his abilities with the joyful recklessness of a child. But he’ll need to master these powers quickly in order to fight the deadly forces of evil controlled by Dr. Thaddeus Sivana.

Review:
Billy Batson is a foster kid, constantly looking for his birth mother and getting into trouble. He has a chip on his shoulder, but has a good heart… deep down. When he becomes a magical superhero in an adult body, there is a definitely learning curve. He has to learn how to use his powers… and not abuse them. But Dr. Sivana is coming for him and tries to take Billy’s power before he realizes his full potential.

This is finally a DC film that doesn’t take itself too seriously. It’s fun and exciting and loaded with laughs. It could have easily been a PG film and more family-friendly. But unfortunately, there are a couple scenes at the beginning that show how dangerous the evil entities are by getting a little gruesome as well as some language that earn the PG-13 rating. I was just disappointed as my niece and nephew enjoy Shazam! comics, as they’re geared toward a younger audience. And my 11-year-old niece had to turn her head during the violent scene.

But I still really enjoyed the movie and story. Billy discovers he has a real family, and it had a great message. Full of humor, danger, suspense, fun abilities, and heartwarming drama – this was a great addition to the DC universe. I hope the future installments continue to live up to this quality and more lighthearted feel.

Special Features Include:
– Shazam Exclusive Motion Comic
– The Magical World of Shazam
– Super Fun Zac
– Carnival Scene Study, Shazamily Values
– Who is Shazam?
– Deleted Scenes
– Gag Reel

SHAZAM! – Official Trailer 2 – Only In Theaters April 5

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