Lots of summer Blu-ray & DVD announcements

John Carpenter, Cliffhanger and Rambo lead the Blu-rays, while there are dates too for Son Of Rambow, The Orphanage and a whole lot more...

Rambo - released on Bluray 23rd June.
Kicking off with the Blu-rays… The Ultimate Bluray Rambo Collection – 23rd JuneGigabytes of hi-def violence await in this compendium of bullets and monosyllables. Completists should watch out for the distinct certainty that Rambo 5 will devalue this particular compendium, which features every other Rambo film from First Blood through to Rambo IVExtras on First Blood, Rambo II, Rambo III: Sly vs Rambo – interview Paris 2008 (8 mins 40)Extras on Rambo IV: Audio Commentary with Sylvester Stallone / Featurettes include: It’s a Long Road: The Resurrection of an Icon, Courage and Inspiration: The Musical Legacy of Jerry Goldsmith, Preparing a Warrior: Finishing Rambo, The Weaponry of Rambo, A Hero’s Welcome: The Rambo Premier and Reaction, Legacy of Despair: The Real Struggle of Myanmar / Picture in picture commentary with Sylvester Stallone / Audio commentary with branching featurettes: Snake Sale (Casting), Burmese Pirates (Shooting), Helping People (Production Design), Rambo’s Dream Sequences (Editing), With the Mercs (Casting), Rambo’s Arrow Attack (Visual FX), Nuclear Claymore (Visual FX), Rambo Returns (Visual FX) Diary Of The Dead – 30th JuneOddly enough, the Bluray for George Romero’s handheld zombie opus not only has no further extras than the simultaneously-released 2-disc DVD edition, but is actually missing a 90-minute George Romero documentary included there. The extras on the 2-disc DVD edition are:Disc 1: Commentary with director George A Romero, editor Michael Doherty and DOP Adam Swica / Making Of: Into the Camera interview with actorsDisc 2: Master of the Dead: Interview with George A Romero with foreword by producers / Filmed character profiles / You Look Dead: Make up featurette / A New Spin On Death: Spin VFX featurette / A World Gone Mad: Photography & Design featurette / The Lead Up To Diary: UK Exclusive Interview from Frightfest 08 / Speak of the Dead: featurette about the celebrity voice-overs / Shorts: The First Week & The Roots plus:George A Romero Documentary: Behind the Scenes of the cult classic Night of the Living Dead, Interview with George A. Romero, last interview with actor Carl Hardeman, Tour of Night’s cemetery in Pittsburg and much more…

JOHN CARPENTER BLU-RAYS: (all on 4th August)And it’s about bloody time…Escape From New York (1981)Call him Snake! The extras on this hi-def release of Carpenter’s influential sci-fi rescue-mission seems to be familiar, apart from the new Carpenter interview, but the alternate beginning is worth having…Extras: Return to Escape from New York (23 mins) / New and exclusive John Carpenter interview (31 mins) / 3 x original trailers / Snakes Crime (deleted original intro) / 5.1 / Commentary

The Fog (1980)This salty tale of vengeful and ghostly pirates was shivering timbers back when Johnny Depp was learning his two chords, though all the extras are old… Extras: Tales From The Mist (30 min documentary) / teaser trailer / trailer / 5.1/ Commentary – None of these are new to region 2 They Live (1988)Roddy Piper and his magic sunglasses hit hi-def in Carpenter’s paranoiac 1988 sci-fi thriller. Again, nothing new in the extras for R2 (for shame – this is one that needed looking at again in the light of current affairs). Extras: EPK – 8 min ‘making of’ featurette commentary.

Don’t forget to check out today’s John Carpenter interview. Meanwhile…

THE SCHWARZENEGGER COLLECTION – 4th AugustRed Heat (1998)/ Red Sonja (1985) / Total Recall (1990)/ Raw Deal (1986)An apparently random snatch-and-grab from Arnie’s checkered but spectacular career, this collection veers from the spectacular (Total Recall) to the spectacularly insignificant (Red Sonja ran for one night in the UK, presumably to secure distribution rights – I remember missing its single showing in the West End with my sword-and-sorcery obsessed dad, who needn’t have been so disappointed, as it turned out). Total Recall is being made available as a separate Bluray release, and all the extras seem to be the same as the last SE. All these releases will also be available in DVD editions.Extras:Red Heat: I’m Not Russian featurette, Stuntman for All Seasons featurette, East Meets West featurette / trailerTotal Recall: Commentary with Verhoeven and Schwarzenegger / Making of / Imagining Total Recall & Vision of Mars Featurettes / Storyboard Comparisons / Trailer / TV Spots / 5.1Raw Deal: trailerRed Sonja: trailer

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The Orphanage (2007) 2 Disc Set Blu-RayWhat with The Emerald Forest and the City Of Lost Children, there are plenty of missing kids in this summer’s releases. Add to the list Juan Antonio Bayona’s chilling Guillermo Del Toro-produced tale of a tormented mother in search of her errant son, which debuts both on Bluray and DVD with unvaried extras.Extras: Making of Featurette (12 mins) / Deleted scenes / Interview with Bayona and Del Toro in Budapest / UK Exclusive Q&A with Bayona at Curzon Mayfair / Casting & Rehearsals/ Designs & Sounds & Lighting & Storyboards & more.

Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) – 4th AugustJames Cameron’s hugely popular – though now rather dated – sequel to his 1984 cult hit arrives in hi-definition glory that will either highlight the pioneering effects of ILM or show them up. The extras are rather meagre compared to certain of the numerous special editions…Extras: Director’s Commentary / 5.1 / Biographies / Trailer

Cliffhanger (1993) – 4th AugustWatch Sly wrestle with hackneyed motivations that Clint Eastwood abandoned 10 years earlier in Renny Harlin’s nonetheless enjoyable snow-bound romp…Extras: Personal Introduction From Renny Harlin / The Making Of “Cliffhanger” / Making Of “Cliffhanger” (EPK) / Deleted Scenes / Storyboard Comparisons / Special Effects: How it was done / Interviews with Sylvester Stallone / Renny Harlin / Janine Turner / John Lithgow / Michael Rooker / Trailers / TV Spots

Okay, let’s change the pace…

Son Of Rambow (2007)Garth Jennings’ semi-autobiographical tale of kids recreating Stallone’s eighties opus hits both Bluray and DVD with the same extras…Extras: Making of featurette (35 mins) / Commentary with Garth, Nick (Hammer & Tongs) Will and Bill / Interview with Jessica Hynes / Interview with Will and Bill / Competition winner (5 mins) / Garth’s short film Arran (9 mins) / Geography Lesson

My Blueberry Nights (2007) – 23rd JuneHeartbroken Norah Jones beguiles café-owning slacker Jude Law in this utterly interminable meander to nowhere. Quite what hi-def resolutions can do to improve this is beyond me, but if you like it, you’ll probably also be up for the…Extras: 10,279 miles since Hong Kong: My Blueberry short documentary / Cannes Press conference with Wong Kar Wai & Norah Jones (20 mins) / Character Study / trailer

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And now the DVDs…

David Lynch Collection – 25th AugustInland Empire (2006) Discs 1 & 2 / Mulholland Drive (2001) Discs 1 & 2 / The Elephant Man: Special Edition (1980)/ more yet to be announcedLynch’s haunting biopic of Treves and Merrick is perhaps rather unfairly lumped in with examples of his far more freeform cinematic psychoses in this unusually assembled box-set (from which The Elephant Man is available with all associated new extras as a separate release).Extras announced so far (more to come):Inland Empire bonus disc: Guardian interview at the NFT with David Lynch/ A Short Interview in London/ Conversation with David Lynch by Mike Figgis/ A Masterclass with David Lynch/ Interview at the Cartier FoundationMulholland Drive bonus disc: Making Of, Exclusive interviews with David Lynch, Naomi Watts, Justin Theroux, Laura Harring, Mary Sweeney (subtitled) and Angelo Badalamenti (English language), Cannes 2001 press conference, Trailer, Inland Empire trailer, Lynch on Lynch book extractElephant Man: The Real Elephant Man documentary featurette on life for Merrick in Victorian England (19 mins) / trailer / New & Exclusive John Hurt interview / New & Exclusive David Lynch interview

The Jeunet & Caro box-set – 14th JulyThough Alien Resurrection (1997) remains Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s biggest sci-fi project, and his chum Caro did some conceptual costume design for it, the pair’s longstanding film partnership was made of bolder stuff; this new DVD box-set includes the acclaimed Delicatessan (1991) and City Of Lost Children (1995), as well as the early collaboration The Bunker of The Last Gunshots (1981).Extras:Delicatessen – Jean-Pierre Jeunet archives / Making Of / TrailerCity Of Lost Children – ‘Making of’ featurette / JPJ interview / Behind the scenes footage / JPJ Commentary The Emerald Forest (1985) DVD – 14th JulyJohn Boorman’s story of a father (Powers Boothe) seeking out his lost son amongst the primitive tribes of Brazil features a new John Boorman interview and a trailer, along with…Extras: Making of Featurette (12 mins) / Deleted scenes / Interview with Bayona and Del Toro in Budapest / UK Exclusive Q&A with Bayona at Curzon Mayfair / Casting & Rehearsals/ Designs & Sounds & Lighting & Storyboards & more

Stargate: Special EditionThe 1994 Roland Emmerich film that spawned a legion of TV episodes gets the SE treatment, with nerd James Spader and nut Kurt Russell contending for the right to make contact with a not-entirely friendly alien civilisation that explains a hell of a lot about the pyramids…Disc 1: Director’s Cut (124 mins) / 5.1 / Audio commentary Dean Devlin (co-writer and producer) and Roland Emmerich (director and co-writer) / Making Of (52’)Disc 2: Theatrical Version (116 mins) / Trailer / Is There A Stargate? Doc (36 mins) / Newswraps: x 5 –reels focusing on Story / Cast/ Production / Design / Director – B-roll selection (6 mins) Iron Eagle IIThough unlikely to win many new admirers, Lou Gossett’s continuing airborne antics may prove popular on the nostalgia ticket in its premiere on DVD… Extras: trailer. And that’s it. Aces: Iron Eagle IIIMore aeronautic shenanigans with Lou fighting a former Nazi in South America.Extras: brace yourselves…trailer.