King of New York released on 4K Blu Ray by Arrow Video

Arguably maverick filmmaker Abel Ferrara’s most accessible and explosive film, King of New York’s status as an urban gangster classic is cemented by a magnetic, career-best central performance by Christopher Walken, as well as riveting support from Laurence Fishburne, Wesley Snipes, Giancarlo Esposito, Steve Buscemi and David Caruso.

After years inside, drug lord Frank White (Walken) is fresh out of jail and back on the streets of New York City. Seeing himself as half Scarface, half Robin Hood, Frank and his enforcers brutally take back control of the city, turf by turf – with starry dreams of using the millions to benefit the community and save a local hospital. Before Frank can fulfil his ruthless lust for power, though, he’s got to get past the crooked cops determined to take him down, and the criminal competition that won’t bend to his will.

Still just as relevant and incendiary now as it was three decades ago, King of New York returns with guns blazing in this definitive special edition, including a new director-approved 4K restoration.

4K ULTRA HD SPECIAL EDITION CONTENTS:

• New 4K restoration from the original negative by Arrow Films, approved by director Abel Ferrara and cinematographer Bojan Bazelli
• 4K (2160p) UHD Blu-ray presentation in Dolby Vision (HDR10 compatible)
• LPCM original stereo and remixed DTS-HD MA 5.1 surround audio options
• Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
• Audio commentary by director Abel Ferrara
• Audio commentary with composer Joe Delia, producer Mary Kane, casting director Randy Sabusawa and editor Anthony Redman
• Interview with director Abel Ferrara
• Interview with producer Augusto Caminito
• Abel Ferrara: Not Guilty, a documentary on the director from the French TV show Cinéastes de notre temps
• A Short Film About the Long Career of Abel Ferrara, a documentary looking back at the director’s career, including interviews with his key collaborators
• Original theatrical trailers and TV spots
• Image gallery
• Reversible sleeve featuring newly commissioned artwork by Tracie Ching

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collectors’ booklet containing essays on the film by Iain Sinclair and Abel Ferrara biographer Brad Stevens

BLU-RAY SPECIAL EDITION CONTENTS:

• New 4K restoration from the original negative by Arrow Films, approved by director Abel Ferrara and cinematographer Bojan Bazelli
• High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation
• LPCM original stereo and remixed DTS-HD MA 5.1 surround audio options
• Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
• Audio commentary by director Abel Ferrara
• Audio commentary with composer Joe Delia, producer Mary Kane, casting director Randy Sabusawa and editor Anthony Redman
• Interview with director Abel Ferrara
• Interview with producer Augusto Caminito
• Abel Ferrara: Not Guilty, a documentary on the director from the French TV show Cinéastes de notre temps
• A Short Film About the Long Career of Abel Ferrara, a documentary looking back at the director’s career, including interviews with his key collaborators
• Original theatrical trailers and TV spots
• Image gallery
• Reversible sleeve featuring newly commissioned artwork by Tracie Ching

FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Illustrated collectors’ booklet containing essays on the film by Iain Sinclair and Abel Ferrara biographer Brad Stevens

DVD SPECIAL EDITION CONTENTS:

• New 4K restoration from the original negative by Arrow Films, approved by director Abel Ferrara and cinematographer Bojan Bazelli
• Standard Definition DVD (PAL) presentation
• Dolby Digital original stereo audio
• Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
• Audio commentary by director Abel Ferrara
• Audio commentary with composer Joe Delia, producer Mary Kane, casting director Randy Sabusawa and editor Anthony Redman
• Interview with director Abel Ferrara
• A Short Film About the Long Career of Abel Ferrara, a documentary looking back at the director’s career, including interviews with his key collaborators
• Original theatrical trailers and TV spots
• Image gallery
• Reversible sleeve featuring newly commissioned artwork by Tracie Ching

RRP: £15.99
Region: 2
Rating: 18
Genre: Crime
Duration: 103 mins
Language: English
Subtitles: English SDH
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Audio: 2.0
Colour
Discs: 1
DVD Cat No: FCD2052
DVD Barcode: 5027035022215

The Bouncer (2019)

Lukas (Jean Claude Van Damme) is a nightclub Bouncer who works hard to support his 8yr old daughter. After an altercation with an unruly clubber goes seriously wrong, Lukas is fired and left with no means to support himself or his daughter.

Becoming desperate he takes on the role of a bouncer at a strip club. However it’s not long before he tasked with more, extremely illegal tasks. To add to his misery the police take an interest in him after his nightclub incident, forcing him to spy on his new boss and report back to them. Things get progressively worse, building to a brutal denouement.

Van Damme fans hoping for a typical JCVD movie where he does his famous jumping round house kick, may be a tad let down here. The Bouncer is a different animal, and one where JCVD flexes his acting muscles instead. He is a man whose emotions bubble on the surface, barely able to keep it together. The action is sparse, but brutal when it does happen. Bones are broken, heads are cracked and people are dispatched brutally.

It’s a pleasant change to see Van Damme in a role a such as this, as he is never really given much of a chance to show what he can do when given the proper material. My only real gripe with this particular release was that it was dubbed. It is clearly a movie that was filmed in Belgium, so I think the option of subtitles wouldn’t have been too much to ask for. The only good thing about the dubbing, is that Van Damme dubbed his own voice.

This is a solid movie, and one that I think Van Damme fans will enjoy. Just know what sort of movie you’re going to watch, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Dazzler Media presents The Bouncer on Blu-ray, DVD and digital download from 8th April 2019
Pre-order from Amazon: https://amzn.to/2H5W5zN

4/5

JM

Youth (2017)

Youth, takes a look at the lives of a group who are members of a Military Cultural Troupe in 1970’s China. Over the course of the movie friends find love, but the death of Chairman Mao throws the country into chaos. The innocence of youth is then stripped away on the battlefield, and life for these young people will never be the same again.

The director, Xiagang Feng, really captures the period well. The lives of these young men and women is shown to be an enjoyable one. Communism and politics is always there, but never becomes the focal point of the movie…well at least not for the first half.

It’s uplifting to see these young people enjoy their time together, having fun and finding love, all while the threat of civil unrest looms. To then see their lives thrown into complete disarray, and for the reality of their situation dawn on them, is heartbreaking. Heartbreaking because I felt they were essentially forced into fighting. They act or they die. This was a regime where independent thought was not welcomed at all. So to watch friends torn apart, it is sad to see.

All the time you can see each of those young men and women yearn for the past to be the present. For the ‘good old days’ to be here again. It’s never a case of nostalgia taking over, it’s just the desire for life to be simple again. I think we can all identify with that, especially with society as it is today. You want to go back to when things were easier to understand, to when life never felt so complicated. ‘Youth’ captures that feeling in a very bittersweet way. The horrors of war are never underplayed either, which makes it all the more painful to know that those men and women will never return to the way it was.

4/5

JM

Prepare for the assault. 

The awesome Assault on Precinct 13 is getting another exclusive release from the folks over at Cine Museum. Below are pictures of all the available editions and a link to purchase. This will be the first exclusive from Cine Museum, with more titles to follow in the coming months.

Here’s the link to purchase

https://cinemuseum.store/collections/cinemuseum-exclusive
JM

Black Sails Season 1-4 Steelbook Unboxing

Wow. What a stunning steelbook set this is. Coming in two separate steelbooks, each one containing two seasons, this is a magnificent set that would be a treasure in anyone’s collection.

Housed in a lovely plastic slip cover, the steelbooks are glorious to look at, the artwork alone has been lovingly applied and advertises that there are over 100 minutes worth of extras to indulge in after you have binged all four seasons.

Out of the slip case, the steelbooks come together to form an amazing piece of art, detailing several characters, ships and of course pirate skulls. The likeness of Toby Stephens is really well captured, I would love to have something like this on my wall.

The rear of the steelbooks also form a piece when joined together. Okay, not as impressive as the art on the front, but nice to look at all the same.

The interior artwork of the first steelbook is mightily impressive however. Showing the characters relaxing and looking suitably moody, it is striking stuff. Black and gold being the only two colours used to bring it to life.

The art inside the second steelbook is just as good. This one is a bit lighter in tone, utilising a grey and gold look, it resembles a photo from the 19th century and looks amazing. All of the art would make great posters to be framed.

Black Sails Season 1-4 is available now to buy from Amazon, just click the link below:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/B01N6X8UX0/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1504381127&sr=8-1&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_FMwebp_QL65&keywords=Black+sails+steelbook&dpPl=1&dpID=41wEcco6aRL&ref=plSrch
JM

Modus (TV Series) (2015)

The Scandinavians do it again. Seriously. Very rarely have I watched  a programme from Sweden or Denmark where I have been bored or found the story uninteresting. Detective Ingvar Nyman is sent to Uppsala to investigate the grisly murder or a bishop. Teaming up with a psychologist, they seek to uncover just why people are turning up dead in some very strange circumstances. 

There are gruesome scenes which may not be for the squeamish, but this series is never gratuitous. It’s superbly acted and the story is gripping. It’s mostly subtitled, but there is quite a bit of English speaking in it too for those that have an allergic reaction to reading subtitles. Seriously folks, you’re missing out on some gems if you refuse to watch movies or programmes with subtitles. 

The cast do a very good job in keeping you engaged, and play their parts to perfection. I really hope that there is more of this to come. MODUS  is released on Blu-ray & DVD on Monday 19th December by Nordic Noir & Beyond.

Modus is definitely a series that you need to give your time to. Very impressed. 

5/5

JM

Beck: Vol. 2 (2016) (TV Series) 

The Scandinavians really do know how to make thrilling drama. With the likes of Trapped, The Killing, Borgen and many others, they have thrilled UK audiences. Beck is another jewel in that crown. 

Peter Haber plays the brilliant Martin Beck, a Swedish detective who hunts down all sorts of criminals. He is called back into action when a journalist is found beaten to death in his home. Various fingerprints are found which may allude to the killer’s identity, but the further Beck and his team dig, the more they realise that things may not be as straightforward as they seem. 

However that is only the first case in this series. This wonderful procedural weaves through different grisly cases, whilst simultaneously delving into each of the characters lives. It does a great job in really investing in the characters and making you care for them. The acting really is first class.

The stories are thoroughly gripping too. The writing is intelligent and there are various twists and turns keeping you on the edge of your seat. The supporting cast are fabulous, and you never get the feeling like any one character feels redundant in their role. 

If the Scandinavians can continue to produce awesome television such as this, then I think we will always have something decent to watch. Even more than once. BECK – THE SERIES VOLUME TWO is released on DVD on Monday 10th October by Nordic Noir & Beyond.

5/5

JM

Gomorrah: Season 2 (2016)

Don’t read if you haven’t seen the first season. 

*CAUTION SPOILERS AHEAD*

With Don Pietro sprung from his prison convoy and Gennaro clinging to life after being shot and left for dead by Ciro, a power vacuum has been created and Don Salvatore is manoeuvring to take complete control of the city. Continuing on from the blisteringly good first season, Gomorrah aims to capitalise on its gripping story on the fall and possible rise of the Savastano clan. 

Ciro has decided to make a power grab himself, though not for complete control, rather just to stay alive. Gennaro looks to reconnect with his father but it doesn’t go as he would’ve hoped. What Gomorrah does well is fully flesh out every character, even those that are sometimes relegated to the background. The first season did it too. There were episodes that contained just a handful of characters, and didn’t need to constantly remind you that others existed. Same for season 2. One episode is dedicated almost completely to Gennaro and Don Pietro. It’s a thrillingly told episode, that shows you how deep bonds are between father and son, and how damaging a mistake can be. 

The acting is second to none. Seriously. Everyone owns their respective roles and nobody feels like they’re not pulling their weight. Same goes for the script. The story never feels like it flags, and is constantly keeping you on the edge of your seat. I seriously cannot wait for season 3.

Gomorrah season 2 is available to order now on Blu Ray and DVD from all good stockists. 

5/5

JM

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (2016)

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We can thank writer Seth Grahame-Smith for mashing up Jane Austen’s classic ‘Pride and Prejudice’ with the undead. It’s something that shouldn’t really work, as it’s two wildly different ideas being melded together. That said, it does work, and work quite well.

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The story really is just the standard tale of love between Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy, with hordes of the shuffling undead thrown in. Lily James is fantastic as Elizabeth, really getting into the fights, with the dashing Sam Riley playing Mr. Darcy, fighting by her side. Director Burr Steers said that most people couldn’t really figure out how to film the movie as they weren’t sure what direction to take it in. Burr Steers said he took the job because he was just going to film it like he would if it didn’t have zombies in it. Everyone plays it so straight and it makes it a very funny movie because of it.

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The gore is not bad, not as gory as I was expecting, considering we have flesh eating zombies on the prowl. The fight choreography is very well put together, and everybody seems to be throwing themselves into their roles. The supporting cast of Lena Headey, Charles Dance, Jack Huston and even Doctor Who actor Matt Smith are all cast brilliantly in their respective roles.

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The film does lag in the third act, which I was a little disappointed about, as that is exactly when it should be firing on all cylinders. The movie is released on Blu Ray and DVD on 27th June.

3/5

JM

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Follow The Money (TV Series) (2016)

  
Alexander Sødergren (Nikolaj Lie Kaas) is a ruthless business man who works for a Danish company called Energreen. He has plans to corner the energy market, and believes wind farms are the future. When a dead body is pulled from the sea in which a wind farm is situated, a detective called Mads Justesen (Thomas Bo Larsen) believes that the shady Energreen had something to do with it. 

  
One thing I’ve noticed about these Scandinavian crime dramas is that it nearly always starts with dead body being pulled from the water. Maybe they should take up swimming perhaps? 

Also playing into proceedings is a young mechanic and ex convict called Nicky (Esben Smed Jensen), who finds himself tangled up with Energreen when he tries to resort to blackmail. There’s also a young lawyer called Claudia (Natalie Madueño) who receives a promotion which helps her in her investigation into the dodgy goings on inside Energreen. 

  
The plot moves along very slowly, and is nowhere near as gripping as previous Scandinavian dramas like The Killing or Trapped. This is more the political side of things like Borgen, which is no surprise really as it was created by the same guy. The dialogue is very wooden in places, though one would guess that maybe something has been lost in translation. Nikolaj Lie Kaas is very good as the ruthless Alexander or ‘Sander’ as he’s also called. He is very convincing in his role and thankfully the poor script doesn’t seem to hamper his acting quality whatsoever. 

Thomas Bo Larsen is also good as the dogged detective Mads Justesen, who’s home life also weighs him down as his wife suffers with multiple sclerosis. I felt that the aspect of his wife suffering with such a debilitating disease was kind of shoehorned in, just to make us feel more sympathetic towards him. I felt it was unnecessary as his character was already adequately defined for us to relate to as an audience. 

  
The camerawork is great in my opinion however, as it moves around the office like a shark, perfectly capturing the claustrophobic atmosphere of an office where so much is going on. 

Scandinavian dramas have always been worth watching, and ‘Follow the Money’ is no different. However I would love to see a series which delves even more into the dark hearts of man, maybe something involving the occult. 

FOLLOW THE MONEY is released on DVD & Blu-Ray Monday 25th April by Nordic Noir & Beyond and is available for pre order now. 

3/5

JM