Mike’s Picks: ‘Chuck Berry: Hail! Hail! Rock ‘n’ Roll’ and ‘Christmas in July’

Chuck Berry: Hail! Hail! Rock ‘n’ Roll

Shout! Factory, Documentary, $24.97 Blu-ray, NR.
Stars Chuck Berry, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Linda Ronstadt, Etta James.
1987.
Keith Richards wanted to give Chuck Berry a backup band he deserved for once as part of a splashy St. Louis tribute concert that Taylor Hackford then filmed — and in doing so, gave rock’s most seminal pioneer the movie he deserved as well.
Extras: The truly blockbuster extras on Shout! Factory’s new Blu-ray carried over from Image Entertainment’s lesser-seen deluxe DVD make a pretty airtight case for the superiority of Blu-ray over other home transmission systems if you really want a clue of what a scene production is about.
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Christmas in July

Street Date 11/26/2019
Kino Lorber, Comedy, $29.95 Blu-ray, NR.
Stars Dick Powell, Ellen Drew, William Demarest, Raymond Walburn.
1940.
As the funniest, and likely only screen treatment of a familiar premise to exhibit a little depth on the side as well, Preston Sturges’ Christmas in July is widely regarded as that revered comic comet’s most underrated writing-directing achievement.
Extras: Includes a sharp and thoughtful commentary by film historian Samm Deighton.
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