It bears repeating: the death of physical media has been greatly exaggerated. Obviously streaming is the hotness these days, but with ever-changing rights issues meaning that your favorite show or film may be here today/gone tomorrow on Disney+, Netflix, Hulu, Apple+, and the myraid other services that have somehow banded together to reinvent cable television, there’s comfort to be found in owning what you want to watch in a tangible way. The major studios are still supporting the Blu-ray and DVD formats (for a while longer, anyway) which is great in terms of gift giving. These are still the perfect stocking stuffers, but don’t sleep on other great movie merch for gift ideas — from books to home theater accessories and beyond. Here’s what movie-related ideas will make you a gift-giving superstar this year!
Star Wars: The Art of the Rise of Skywalker
We’re not even going to pretend that there’s anything bigger this holiday season than Star Wars: The Art of the Rise of Skywalker. Like the books he has previously done for The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, Phil Szostak is expected to deliver another compelling look at the new film through stunning production illustrations charting the brainstorming, preliminary designs and final concept art. And in case you were wondering, nope, we haven’t seen one page of this book yet, but we are dying too…even if it means having to say goodbye to Luke, Leia, Rey, Finn, Poe et al.
Robocop 2-Disc Limited Collector’s Set
Forget the Robocop statue out in Detroit, the greatest tribute to “the future of law enforcement” is this deluxe two-disc set from Arrow Video. Featuring three versions of the original Robocop (the theatrical cut, director’s cut, and television cut), countless new and archival special features, an 80-page book, a collectible two-sided poster, mini lobby cards and a “this property protected by Robocop” sticker, this mind-blowing release more than makes up for the fact that the franchise never lived up to the promise of what was set forth here.
My Cinema Lightbox
Home theaters are all the rage. So if you have your own mini-multiplex, go all the way and advertise what’s now playing in style with Amped & Company’s My Cinema Lightbox. Combining retro style slot lettering with color-changing LED lights, this item makes ever flick you show a marquee happening!
John Wick 1-3 With Bonus Glossy Art Card
For the dog lover in your life!
Star Trek: Picard Movie & TV Collection
Engage! Yeah, we can’t until Star Trek: Picard premieres in January either, so we recommend checking out this deluxe Blu-ray gift set that includes special feature-length edited versions of the Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes “The Best of Both Worlds” and “Chain of Command,” as well as every motion picture featuring Jean-Luc and company. Consider this the ultimate primer before we catch up with Picard again, and not a moment too soon.
While the Marvel Cinematic Universe will doubtlessly continue for decades to come, the Blu-ray of Avengers: Endgame is a, well, marvelous reminder of how spectacular the first three phases of the MCU truly were.
This gift is the perfect last-minute solution for the streaming junkie. While there’s no official gifting option, it’s really easy to gift someone a Disney+ account, and it’s great for procrastinators because your giftee will receive an email the moment you sign up. Simply sign up as you normally would, but enter the recipient’s name and email address! It’s not perfect, but it sure works.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Quentin Tarantino’s revisionist take on 1960s Hollywood has been called the ultimate hang movie and it’s easy to see why. Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio are spellbinding to watch together, each portraying a character who is, in their own way, desperate to return to a period in showbiz that is vanishing before their eyes. Contrasting their slow fades is Margot Robbie’s take on Sharon Tate, a star on the rise whose luminous rise to stardom takes an surprising turn. To say more would give away the film’s pleasures…of which there are many. For those who yearn for more of Rick Dalton, a collector’s Blu-ray release including beautiful gatefold packaging, a faux movie poster and a specially created issue of Mad magazine, all of which honor a truly unique film experience.
Jaws Board Game
Ravensburger’s latest offering to tabletop gaming culture will take a bite out of the competition this holiday season by translating Steven Spielberg’s 1975 masterpiece to a strategy-based board game. As if that wasn’t exciting enough, did we mention that it gives you the opportunity to play as the shark?
The Fly Collection
Aspiring insect politicians everywhere should attempt to get their mandibles on this deluxe box set from Scream Factory that includes the 1950s classics The Fly, The Return of The Fly and The Curse of The Fly, as well as David Cronenberg’s 1986 remake starring Jeff Goldblum, its interesting-yet-flawed 1989 sequel with Eric Stoltz, and a variety of newly produced special features that are, ahem, certain to generate much buzz about this release.
The Star Wars Archives 1977-1983
What do you get the Star Wars fan who has everything? This deluxe hardcover coffee table book dedicated to the original trilogy that describes itself as “an authoritative exploration of the original saga as told by its creator.” In reality, this is just a beautifully rendered tome packed with rare photos and information that pays tribute to the early innocence of a galaxy far, far away (i.e. this is a Maclunkey-free zone).
Frozen II Vinyl Soundtrack
We guarantee there’s at least one person you’ll be shopping for who wants, nay, NEEDS this.
Big Trouble in Little China
Shout Factory is doing John Carpenter fans a solid this holiday season by releasing a new Blu-ray of the director’s 1986 cult classic Big Trouble in Little China. Along with a variety of newly created special features, the company is offering a special Collector’s Edition bundle that includes an exclusive poster with art from Laz Marquez and a 7″ record printed on green vinyl featuring re-recordings of two tracks from the film’s soundtrack by Carpenter himself. If you are a fan of this flick, and if you regularly read Den of Geek we are guessing you are, you probably already own the film in multiple formats already. So, should you shell out for this latest version? Well, you know what Jack Burton always says, what the hell.
Toy Story 4 4K Ultra HD
Almost improbably, the Toy Story franchise gets more emotionally resonant with each subsequent entry in the franchise. At this point we’ve grown up with these characters, and we can’t imagine our childhood — or future — without them.
Spider-Man: Far From Home
Whoo boy are we glad that Marvel and Sony patched things up, because we don’t want to imagine the Marvel Cinematic Universe without Spider-Man. It also helps things that we are two-for-two in terms of excellent Tom Holland solo Spidey flicks, the second of which is now available on Blu-ray and DVD and features what is perhaps the greatest mid-credits scene in these films to date.
Christopher Reeve/Superman Hallmark Keepsake Ornament
A Hallmark ornament celebrating Christopher Reeve’s portrayal of the Man of Steel has long been overdue. In an extra bit of holiday magic, this plays John Williams’ iconic theme for Superman: The Movie, and we can’t think of anything we’d be more honored to have hanging on our tree this year.
The Making of Alien
Over the past decade, writer J.W. Rinzler has become the go-to guy for making of books. (His peerless bibliography covers everything from the original Star Wars trilogy to Planet of the Apes). His latest tome celebrates the 40th anniversary of Alien by presenting a typically candid look at the film and its complicated production through rare art and photography as well as interviews with all of the key players. Exhaustively researched, this is nothing short of a valentine to one of cinema’s creepiest creatures and the film that made it famous.
Memory: The Origins of Alien
Likewise, Alexandre O. Phillipe’s documentary examination of how Alien sprung to life is equally captivating.
Rick Baker: Metamorphosis
While on the topic of movie monsters, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention this expansive two-volume set celebrating the achievements of makeup genius Rick Baker. Spanning from 1950 to 1989, the books (also written by J.W. Rinzler) present a history not only of Baker, but of how his groundbreaking techniques — including work on Star Wars, An American Werewolf in London, Michael Jackson’s Thriller video, Men in Black, and countless others — shaped the course of science fiction and horror filmmaking…if not popular culture in general.
Fandango Platinum Gift Card
Fandango’s first-ever Platinum Gift Card is not your average gift card. For starters, it’s significantly heavier — thanks to its luxe black-brushed metal. Secondly, it’s a gift that not only holds $200 worth of movie tickets, but it’s also got an additional, free $25 bonus for streaming on FandangoNOW. Together that’s more than enough movie content than needed to keep a movie buff entertained!
Rocky IV “Sico” Action Figure
This is not a drill! Super 7 has made an action figure out of Paulie’s birthday robot (named Sico, by the way) from Rocky IV. Gah!
Godzilla: The Showa-Era Films: 1954-1975
Limited in budget though they may be, the 15 Godzilla films created in Japan from 1954-1975 remain the best kaiju pictures ever made. There’s a charm to each of these pictures that the current Godzilla flicks lack, mainly an understanding that the big G is the star here, and the time he is spent on screen wreaking havoc is the sort of thrill-inducing mania that all pop culture should aspire to. All 15 films (from the original Godzilla to Terror of Mechagodzilla) are included in this lavish set from the Criterion Collection, a label best known for its art house offerings. Packed with a deluxe hardcover book, new art from illustrator Chris Wisina and enough special features to make you forget Godzooky is a thing, this a release that celebrates and legitimizes Godzilla once and for all. Not that we ever doubted his worth for a second.
Samsung Flat 55-Inch 4K UHD 7 Series Ultra HD Smart TV with HDR and Alexa Compatibility
The best movie collection in the world means nothing without a truly stellar TV to watch them on. This 2019 Samsung 55-inch flatscreen brings 4K Ultra HD into your living room, packed with all the smart TV requirements supporting your favorite streaming service. There’s also the option to make this compatible with your Alexa device, making this television a one-stop entertainment hub.
Sony Ubp-X800M2 4K UHD Blu-Ray Disc Player
With features like Dolby Vision and HDR10, Dolby Atmos and DSEE HX, and 4K upscaling up to 60p, this Ultra HD Blu-ray player will make your film library look and sound like they are ripped from your local multiplex.
JBL Bar 5.1 Soundbar
To paraphrase Nintendo’s old ad, if you really want to play your movies with power, add the JBL Bar 5.1 to your home theater setup. Featuring built-in Virtual Surround and 4K sound, this wireless subwoofer delivers a full 550 watts of immersive sound! If you get this for someone, could you invite us over to watch Infinity War?