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Spider-Man: Homecoming is the Pick of the Week

This week brings us a web-crawling superhero, a couple of Criterions, some raunchy ladies, and several nice boxed sets.
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Towards the end of Captain America: Civil War, there is a sweeping scene in which Captain America and Black Widow prepare to train War Machine, Vision, Falcon, and Scarlet Witch to be new Avengers. It was a "passing of the torch" moment. Truth is, over the last decade and dozens of films. the old Avengers are getting, well, old. The actors are all getting tired of playing the same characters and I suspect many fans are ready to move on as well. Marvel has constantly been expanding their cinematic universe and it seems they are preparing to allow some of

Criterion Announces January 2018 Releases

You might want to exchange your holiday presents for these.
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Criterion rings in 2018 with six titles in January. New to the collection are John Hughes' The Breakfast Club; Ken Loach's I, Daniel Blake; and two by G. W. Pabst, Westfront 1918 and Kameradschaft. Getting an HD upgrade is John Ford's Young Mr. Lincoln. There will also be another entry in the Eclipse Series, #45 offers four films from French director Claude Autant-Lara Read on to learn more about them. The Breakfast Club (#905) out Jan 2 What happens when you put five strangers in Saturday detention? Badass posturing, gleeful misbehavior, and a potent dose of angst. With this exuberant

Doctor Who Comes to the Big Screen with 'Twice Upon a Time' on December 27

Event to include exclusive content featuring Peter Capaldi and Steven Moffat.
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Press release: Doctor Who fans are getting a special gift this Christmas from Fathom Events with BBC AMERICA’s Doctor Who: Twice Upon a Time. The epic finale to the Peter Capaldi era of Doctor Who is coming to U.S. movie theaters for one night on Wednesday, December 27 at 7:00 p.m. local time, featuring the return of Pearl Mackie and special guests Mark Gatiss (Sherlock) and David Bradley (Game of Thrones). The event will also introduce the Thirteenth Doctor, played by Jodie Whittaker (Broadchurch), who is the first woman to assume the role. The cinema event will also feature two

A Ghost Story is The Pick of the Week

October is here and with it comes a slew of new horror releases.
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I love October. The long, sweltering days of summer are gone. The air is crisp and cool. Sweatshirts go back into the closet to be worn once again. The leaves start turning. The smell of burning wood in fireplaces and fire pits fill the air. It is a glorious time. It is the month of Halloween and with it scary movies. As you’ll see from the list of movies coming out this week, October means horror. For a genre fan like me, October is like Christmas. Surprisingly, my Pick of the Week isn’t supposed to be all that scary, violent,

Garagehouse Pictures to Screen 3D 35mm Print of Frankenstein's Bloody Terror

Paul Naschy's 1971 film to be presented theatrically in original 3D format for first time in nearly 50 years.
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Press Release: Garagehouse Pictures and Independent International Pictures announce new 35mm print of FRANKENSTEIN’S BLOODY TERROR in 3D available for theatrical bookings. Horror fans rejoice! One of the "holy grails" of cult cinema, presumed lost forever, has been unearthed and is heading back to the big screen for the first time in nearly fifty years. Garagehouse Pictures is proud to announce a newly struck 35mm print of FRANKENSTEIN’S BLOODY TERROR in 3D! The story behind FRANKENSTEIN’S BLOODY TERROR is legendary: in 1971, famed film producer Samuel Sherman's Independent International Pictures secured theatrical rights to distribute the Spanish werewolf movie MARK

David Lynch: The Art Life is the Pick of the Week

This week's new releases bring us a couple of Criterions, a couple of live albums, Texas football, and something scripted by Ed Wood.
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David Lynch is one of the most fascinating directors working today. His films aren’t always good but they are always interesting. He creates nightmarish, surreal landscapes in which plot doesn’t always make sense and which leave themselves up for various interpretations. His career has taken all sorts of strange detours and loops. He’s made very personal, very experimental films; he’s worked on broadcast television; adapted popular science fiction novels; and made several things that were initially only released on his website. It's the sort of career that’s ripe for a good documentary. With any luck David Lynch: The Art Life

TCM Launches Final Year of Trailblazing Women Initiative Celebrating Women's Contribution to the Film Industry

Month-long programming event begins Oct. 2 hosted by Illeana Douglas.
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Press release: Turner Classic Movies (TCM) today announced the final year of Trailblazing Women, a three-year initiative in partnership with Women In Film Los Angeles (WIF) to raise awareness about the historical contributions of women in the film industry. This year’s programming event will examine the substantial impact that female writers, editors and producers have held within the film industry. Hosted by actress, producer and director Illeana Douglas, Trailblazing Women premieres Oct. 2 and airs every Monday throughout October. The theme of the 2017 programming slate - Trailblazing Women: Creators That Made a Difference - highlights female creative influences during

Garagehouse Pictures to Bring Web of the Spider to Blu-ray in October

A classic Italian gothic horror ghost story directed by Antonio Margheriti.
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Press release: An intrepid reporter by the name of Alan Foster (Anthony Franciosa, TENEBRE), accepts a wager from Edgar Allan Poe (Klaus Kinski, NOSFERATU THE VAMPIRE) and his companion, Thomas Blackwood, to spend a single night in the reputedly haunted Blackwood Castle on All Souls Eve. Shortly after settling into the spooky abode, the reporter meets the beautiful Elisabeth Blackwood (Michele Mercier, BLACK SABBATH), and begins to witness ghostly phenomena and visitations from beyond the grave, as an assortment of specters relive the last moments before their ghastly murders. Soon, Foster realizes that the damned spirits of Blackwood Castle require

Samurai Jack: The Premiere Movie Event Plays Big Screens Nationwide on October 16 Only

The first look at the show’s epic Season One movie remastered in high definition, exclusive extras from Samurai Jack: The Complete Series Box Set, and special surprises for fans.
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Press release: Created by famed animation director Genndy Tartakovsky, the fully remastered Emmy-nominated premiere movie from acclaimed Season 1 of the Adult Swim series, Samurai Jack, will debut for the first time in remastered HD when “Samurai Jack: The Premiere Movie Event” arrives in movie theaters nationwide. Presented by Fathom Events and Adult Swim, “Samurai Jack: The Premiere Movie Event” will be shown in U.S. cinemas for one night on Monday, October 16 at 7:00 p.m. local time. Offering fans the ultimate Samurai Jack experience, the exclusive one-night cinema event will captivate audiences with special content filmed for this exclusive

Wonder Woman is the Pick of the Week

This week's new releases include a couple of DC superheroes, a really old Marvel one, plus Ken Burns in Vietnam, and more.
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I like to think I was something of a feminist before I had a daughter. Certainly, I was for equal rights, equal opportunity, and equal pay before she was born, but now it's like all of that is in sharp relief. It's shocking to watch films and shows with my daughter and see how often women are either objectified on screen or have nothing more to do than be the love interest. Together, we’ve become huge fans of superhero movies but it's always been disappointing that the female characters in those movies are constantly relegated to the sidelines. Many others

Criterion Announces December 2017 Releases

Some selections for your holiday wish list.
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The year closes out with the largest entry in Criterion Collection, one new addition, and three upgrades. New to the collection are 100 Years of Olympic Films: 1912-2012 and Alexander Payne’s Election. Getting HD upgrades are D. A. Pennebaker's three Monterey Pop films Barbet Schroeder's General Idi Amin Dada: A Self-Portrait. Read on to learn more about them. 100 Years of Olympic Films: 1912-2012 (#900) out Dec 5 Spanning fifty-three movies and forty-one editions of the Olympic Games, 100 Years of Olympic Films: 1912-2012 is the culmination of a monumental, award-winning archival project encompassing dozens of new restorations by the

It Comes at Night is the Pick of the Week

This week's new releases include a superhero in his underpants, a bunch of classic Universal monsters, a not-so classic updating of the Mummy, and more.
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One of the best, and most difficult things to do as a movie lover is to come to a movie clean, with no preconceived notions. To be able to watch a movie knowing nothing coming in is kind of marvelous. It is also a very rare occurrence. There is simply too much promotion for movies (at least the kind of movies that get shown around here) to go completely unnoticed. I subscribe to way too many entertainment sites and podcasts for me to not know anything going into a movie. Or I should say in order for me to watch

ANIMATION IS FILM Festival Announces Initial Feature Competition Line-up and Jury

Inaugural edition takes place October 20-22, 2017 at the TCL Chinese 6 theaters, Hollywood.
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Press release: ANIMATION IS FILM launches October 20-22 at the TCL Chinese 6 Theater in Hollywood. The Festival will present a highly selective showcase of animated films from around the world, plus red carpet, filmmaker Q&As, special events, receptions, and both juried and audience awards. The festival is being produced by GKIDS in partnership with Annecy International Animation Film Festival and Variety, with additional sponsors and media partners Google and Fathom Events. 2017 FILMS IN COMPETITION (additional titles to be announced) THE BIG BAD FOX & OTHER TALES (U.S. Premiere)Directors Patrick Imbert, Benjamin Renner, France, 2017Benjamin Renner received an Oscar

Rebecca (1940) is the Pick of the Week

This week's new releases include a new season of The Flash, an old Hitchock plus Scarlet Johansson getting raunchy, and Pablo Escobar being bad.
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The more films I watch by Alfred Hitchock the more I’m convinced of his genius. He might have called himself the Master of Suspense but really he was the true master of pure cinema. He used all the tools of his trade - lighting, music, editing, etc. to tell his stories as only can be told in the movies. Francis of Assisi is supposed to have once said “Preach Jesus, and if necessary use words.” I don’t know how Hitch felt about Jesus but he made great movies and only used dialogue when necessary. I first watched Rebecca at a

Metallica to Re-release 'Master of Puppets' November 10, 2017

The first metal album to be added to the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress
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Press release: Metallica announced that they will reissue their third album, Master of Puppets on November 10th on their own Blackened Recordings. The album has been remastered for the most advanced sound quality and will be available in various digital and physical configurations. The reissue is available for pre-order beginning today at www.metallica.com where fans can see the full package details and track listing. Those who pre-order the standard album will receive an instant download of "Disposable Heroes (Remastered)". Those who pre-order the expanded or deluxe editions will receive an instant download of "Disposable Heroes (Remastered)" and "The Thing That

Batman and Harley Quinn is the Pick of the Week

This week brings us two series from DC, plus pirates, rippers, and spies with flowered underwear.
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It is easy to think that Marvel beats DC when it comes to the whole cinematic universe thing. Certainly, they have created a more cohesive landscape for which to play. Their theatrical releases pretty seamlessly come together to form one larger mosaic. The Netflix series do the same and while they don’t really interact with the movies, they’ve done a nice job of keeping them in the same universe. DC however is a bit of a mess in this regard. The movies have done a decent job of blending together the various characters (we’ll see how well they really put

TCM to Remember Legendary Comedic Actor Jerry Lewis on Labor Day

Programming tribute to include The Nutty Professor (1963), The King of Comedy (1983), and The Bellboy (1960).
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Press release: Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will celebrate the life and career of acclaimed comedian, actor and filmmaker Jerry Lewis, whose irrepressible zaniness and frantic creativity made him a defining figure of American entertainment in the 20th century, with a five film tribute on Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 4 in honor of of the nearly 50 years Mr. Lewis spent hosting The Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon encouraging viewers to donate to the charity. Lewis, who passed away Sunday Aug 20 at the age of 91, knew success in movies, on television, in nightclubs, on the Broadway stage from

Synapse Films Brings the Beloved '90s Cult Horror Comedy Popcorn to Blu-ray This October

A loving homage to ’50s/’60s B-movies.
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Press release: In the history of Synapse Films few titles have generated as much excitement as POPCORN, director Mark Herrier’s 1991 cult favorite that’s been one of the most in-demand genre films of the Blu-ray era. Unavailable for over a decade, POPCORN now comes to HD in a deliciously butter-topped Special Edition Blu-ray and DVD release that will have fans craving for refills! What could be scarier than an all-night “Horrorthon”? A group of film students finds out when they stage just such an event at an abandoned movie palace. In addition to the three features—MOSQUITO, THE ATTACK OF THE

Ash vs Evil Dead: The Complete Second Season is the Pick of the Week

A very full week brings us superhero galore, zombies, Deadites, punks, and much more.
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Almost a year ago to the day, I made Ash vs Evil Dead: The Complete First Season my Pick of the Week. I noted then my great fondness for the Evil Dead movies and my great excitement over the new series. I also noted that by the time the Blu-ray was hitting the store shelves I’d not yet seen the entire series. Well, Season 2 has now hit the shelves and while I’ve watched a few more episodes of Season 1, I’ve still not made it all the way through. I like the show, I really do. It is a

Samurai Jack: The Complete Series to Be Released on October 17

Adult Swim isn’t stopping there.
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Press release: Following the epic conclusion of its fifth and final season, Adult Swim’s four-time Emmy Award-winning series, Samurai Jack, arrives as a complete series on Blu-ray and Digital HD October 17, 2017. Featuring all 62 heart-pounding episodes of the critically acclaimed animated show, Samurai Jack: The Complete Series also arrives with action-packed bonus content, including exclusive featurettes, behind the scenes looks and special commentary. Fans will also relive the first four seasons in HD for the first time as each episode has been remastered to perfection. The box set also features a one-of-a-kind metal art print, created especially for

Criterion Announces November 2017 Releases

Titles to pick up or add to your Xmas list.
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The Criterion Collection is releasing four films in November that will have film fans thankful. New to the collection are George Cukor's The Philadelphia Story, Donna Deitch’s Desert Hearts, and Terry Gilliam’s Jabberwocky. A high-def upgrade is also being provided to Jean-Pierre Melville's Le samoura├». Read on to learn more about them. The Philadelphia Story (#901) out Nov 7 With this furiously witty comedy of manners, Katharine Hepburn revitalized her career and cemented her status as the era’s most iconic leading lady—thanks in great part to her own shrewd orchestrations. While starring in the Philip Barry stage play The Philadelphia

Alien: Covenant is the Pick of the Week

This week's new Blu-ray releases include the new Alien film, an update on old Archie, a couple of Criterions, and more.
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In 1979, Ridley Scott directed Alien a near perfect blend of science fiction and horror and one of the greatest films ever made. Seven years later, James Cameron’s sequel Aliens amped up the action and defined that genre. Two more sequels found diminishing returns. The lesser said about the Alien vs Predator franchise the better. In 2012, Scott returned to the series with Prometheus a sort-of prequel. While I enjoyed it more than most, it is still a very flawed film. I can’t say that Alien: Covenant was a return to form, because it's riddled with problems, but definitely goes

Come Celebrate the Blu-ray Release of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 with Yondu Himself, Michael Rooker, in Los Angeles

For those of you hardcore enough to go Full Yondu, there will be room for ten lucky Ravagers to get a full hair dye and shave.
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Press release: On Tuesday, August 22nd from 9:00am-12:00pm, fans around Los Angeles will be able to come pay tribute to the beloved Ravager, Yondu, with a morning of prizes and activities at Shorty’s Barber Shop in West Hollywood! Michael Rooker (‘Yondu’ in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2) will be on location to commemorate his character and interact with fans! Activities Include: The first 50 fans will receive a $50 gift certificate to Shorty’s Barber Shop to come back and Get the Yondu Look Additional giveaways will include Blu-ray Combo Packs and Digital Copies of Marvel Studios’ Guardians of the

Warner Bros Home Entertainment Announces Wonder Woman

The movie arrives onto Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD, and Digital.
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Press release: Celebrate the wonder when Wonder Woman arrives onto Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack, Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and Digital. Gal Gadot returns as the DC Super Hero in the epic action adventure from director Patty Jenkins (“Monster,” AMC’s “The Killing”). The Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack, and Blu-ray Combo Pack will include an all-new bonus scene never before seen in theaters. Wonder Woman will be available on Ultra HD Blu-ray for $44.95, Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack for $44.95, Blu-ray Combo Pack for $35.99 and DVD for $28.98. The Ultra HD Blu-ray features an Ultra

The Breaking Point is the Pick of the Week

A pretty light week brings us an Ernest Hemingway adaptation, an Arthurian legend from Guy Ritchie, and more.
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Ernest Hemingway is one of my all-time favorite writers. He had a way of cutting out all the flab from his stories, getting right down to the bone. Yet for all his spare masculinity, there is a tenderness to his stories, an emotional quality that you rarely find anywhere else. That style also lends itself well to the movies. Unlike a lot of writers, Hemingway never spent a lot of time with his characters inward thoughts, his stories are full of action verbs, of people doing things. It's easy to see why nearly all of his novels and short stories

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan Returns to the Big Screen for 35th Anniversary Celebration Sept. 10 and 13 Only

Two-day-only cinema event to include digitally remastered Director’s Cut and a brand-new William Shatner interview.
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Press release: Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, the epic science-fiction adventure that continues to captivate audiences, marks its 35th anniversary with a two-day-only return to cinemas nationwide. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan will be presented in a digitally remastered Director’s Cut and, as an added bonus for Star Trek and movie fans, William Shatner will appear in a newly produced in-depth interview that will play before each screening. Fathom Events and Paramount Pictures will present Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan on Sunday, September 10, and Wednesday, September 13, at 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.

Ernie Kovacs: Take a Good Look - The Definitive Collection to Be Released by Shout! Factory on Oct. 17, 2017

All 49 existing episodes of this truly offbeat game show from television’s original genius, fully restored and digitized by the Library of Congress, largely unseen for 60 years.
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Press release: Shout! Factory has announced the October 17, 2017, release of a spectacular new 7-DVD box set, Ernie Kovacs: Take A Good Look - The Definitive Collection, in collaboration with Ediad Productions, Inc. With the exception of a handful of episodes, this show has been largely unseen for the last 60 years. The set is available now for pre-order on Shoutfactory.com (includes an exclusive bonus disc) and Amazon.com. Ernie Kovacs was a consummate comedian, influencing TV funnymen such as Johnny Carson, David Letterman, Jim Henson, Pee-wee Herman, Billy Crystal, as well as Monty Python and Saturday Night Live. Take

John Carpenter SteelBooks are the Picks of the Week

This week's new releases include some fun looking SteelBooks plus a Tom Hanks thriller, a couple of interesting documentaries and more.
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I bought a house a year ago. It is the first house I ever purchased. I’ve always been a renter. Never really stayed in one rental for very long either. In the twenty years since my first apartment, the longest I’ve ever stayed in one abode is about two years. The thing about regularly moving to a new place is that you are constantly rearranging your furniture. What fits well in one rental house may not fit at all in an apartment. There is constant flux - expanding and contracting - from place to place. But now that I own

TCM Programming Alert for the Week of 07-31-17

Are your favorites appearing this week?
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August on TCM sees the return of the month-long programming event Summer Under The Stars, which sees the channel offer a daily tribute to actors and actresses. The event gets off to an early start with Diane Keaton in the spotlight with a selection of some of her movies and the TV special where she received her AFI Lifetime Achievement Award. AFI Lifetime Achievement Award: A Tribute to Diane Keaton - Monday, July 31 at 8:00 p.m. (ET) TCM pays tribute to Diane Keaton, recipient of the AFI Life Achievement Award. Tune in for a night of programming including the

Lost in America is the Pick of the Week

Hope you have a nest egg ready to buy these releases.
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Reading Mat's Pick of the Week column over the years, it's quite clear that he is a horror-movie fan. Personally, I have always found myself more attracted to comedy. From great wit to utter silliness, there's just something so appealing about being brought to fits of laughter. Albert Brooks has a great comic sensibility. The third film he directed, Lost in America, is a comedy classic about David and Linda Howard (Brooks and Julie Hagerty), a married couple that rejects the modern life of the '80s by dropping out "like in Easy Rider" and traveling the country in an RV.

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