Horror Film ‘Nightwish’ Due on Disc Aug. 27 From MVD

The horror film Nightwish is coming to Blu-ray and DVD Aug. 27 from MVD Entertainment Group and Unearthed Classics.

In the film, using sensory deprivation techniques, a doctor of parapsychology provokes his students to examine their own deaths in evermore horrifying circumstances. Roles are exchanged and shuffled as reality and fantasy become indistinguishable and each new dreadful death proves more terrifying than the last. Their paranormal explorations lead them to an abandoned mansion in a desolate area that natives call the “Valley of Fear” where years of drinking chemically tainted water have led to a genetically damaged population and mutant wildlife. Local legends also tell stranger stories of extraterrestrials, which the students attempt to explore.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Special features include commentary with producer Paul White and Stephen Biro; trailers; and for the first run only, an alternate slip cover and a booklet on the film.

Punk Biopic ‘Anti-Nowhere League: We Are the League’ Due on DVD Aug. 9 From MVD

Anti-Nowhere League: We Are the League will come out on DVD plus CD Aug. 9 from MVD Entertainment Group and Cleopatra Entertainment.

The story of the notorious punk rock band uncovers how a biker, a skinhead, a grammar school boy and a Persian exile come together, with no musical talent or ambitions and even less respect for anything or anyone, to burst into the U.K. charts with their debut single.

The film, directed by George Hencken and produced by Brian Perera, Yvonne Perera and Matt Green, stars Stewart Copeland, Rat Scabies and Nick.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

‘Double Dragon’ and ‘The Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog’ Racing to DVD From MVD

Two 1990s animated TV series based on Sega game franchises, “The Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog” and “Double Dragon: The Animated Series,” are coming to DVD Aug. 13  from MVD Entertainment Group and Invincible Entertainment.

“The Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog” is coming in a six-disc set featuring all 65 episodes. In the series, Sonic the Hedgehog is on the run with his faithful sidekick Tails to outpace the despicable Dr. Robotnik, foiling his plans to “robotize” and enslave the population of Planet Mobius. Jaleel White (“Family Matters”) is the voice of Sonic the Hedgehog. The release comes in time for the bow of a Sonic the Hedgehog theatrical live action movie starring Jim Carrey and James Mardsen.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

The entire series of “Double Dragon” is coming to home video for the first time on three DVDs. In the animated series, a martial-arts master and his twin brother fight. Billy and Jimmy Lee are twins separated at birth and raised by opposing factions. Following the Code of the Dragon, “never to harm others intentionally and not fight if one can help it,” Billy trains to become the Dragon Master by his 18th birthday. Billy Joins forces with policewoman Marian Martin and together they fight to protect The City from the Shadow Warriors, a criminal organization led by the mysterious Shadow Master, who secretly instructs Jimmy Lee in the dark ways of the Black Flame. Can long-lost brothers reunite to become the legendary Double Dragon?

 

Horror Titles ‘Close Calls,’ ‘Bong of the Living Dead’ and ‘The Barn’ Coming on DVD From Scream Team And MVD

MVD Entertainment Group has picked up distribution of Scream Team Releasing titles and is releasing several of the company’s horror films on DVD.

Available now on DVD is Bong of the Living Dead, the story of five friends who share both a love of pot and a lifelong dream to see the zombie apocalypse become reality. When the undead actually rise to gruesomely (and hilariously) eat the living, the group discovers it’s not all corpse-killing montages and mall raids, and that their relationships will be pushed to the limit if they’re going to survive.

Due Aug. 13 on DVD is Dude Bro Party Massacre III. In the wake of two back-to-back mass murders on Chico’s frat row, loner Brent Chirino must infiltrate the ranks of a popular fraternity to investigate his twin brother’s murder at the hands of the serial killer known as “Motherface.” As they are picked off one by one, Brent and his fellow bros must face the terrifying reality that their deadly foe, believed to have been killed, has returned from the grave again and is hell-bent on the destruction of the Delta Bis. The cast includes Patton Oswalt.

Also coming on DVD Aug. 13 is Murder Made Easy. Best pals Joan and Michael invite their dearest friends over for a cordial dinner to discuss the passing of Joan’s husband Neil. But as each guest arrives, dark secrets are revealed and murder is definitely on the menu. The film won the Indie Spirit Award at the 2018 Women in Horror Film Festival.

Coming Sept. 17 on DVD is Close Calls, about a girl who is grounded at home. With the house to herself, a fridge full of food, and a box of drugs stashed in her closet, it’s “party time” as usual for Morgan (Jordan Phipps). All she has to do is tend to her sick grandma when her father leaves. But then the phone rings. Between disturbing calls, the drugs she has taken, and a few surprise visits from some unexpected guests, Morgan’s paranoia grows as she now believes everyone is out to get her. To make matters worse, she keeps forgetting to give Grandma her meds. Special features include director’s commentary with Richard Stringham; actor commentary with Jordan Phipps and Greg Fallon; bonus commentary by film historian David Del Valle with Joe Magna; Red Phone Diaries – The Making of Close Calls, a two and a half hour documentary; “Building the Sets,” a time lapse video; a gag reel; a photo gallery; and trailers.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Due Oct. 15 on DVD is 10/31, a collection of tales introduced by Malvolia: The Queen of Screams. She takes viewers on a journey through her Halloween Monster Marathon, featuring five indie directors with Halloween stories. Stories include a stay at a haunted bed and breakfast in “The Old Hag” (Justin M. Seaman of The Barn), a first date gone deadly in “Trespassers” (Zane Hershberger of Cryptids), a murderous roller rink party in “Killing the Dance” (John William Holt of The Dooms Chapel Horror), a freak October winter storm sending tricksters and even Santa to your door in “The Halloween Blizzard of ’91” (Brett DeJager of Bonejangles), and an escaped madman continuing his seasonal killing spree in “The Samhain Slasher” (Rocky Gray’s directorial debut).

Also on tap Oct. 15 on DVD is The Barn. On Halloween night, the “Legend of the Barn” awakens. It’s Halloween 1989 and best friends Sam and Josh are just trying to enjoy their last “Devil’s Night” before graduating high school. Trouble soon arises when the two pals and a group of friends take a detour on their way to a rock concert, finding an old abandoned barn and awakening the evil inside. It’s up to Sam and Josh to find a way to protect their friends and defeat the creatures that lurk within The Barn. The film stars Mitchell Musolino, Will Stout, Lexi Dripps, Cortland Woodard, Nikki Darling, Nickolaus Joshua with Linnea Quigley (Night of the Demons and Return of the Living Dead) and Ari Lehman (the first Jason Voorhees from “Friday the 13th”). It features an original score by Rocky Gray, former member of Grammy award-winning goth/rock group Evanescence.

Also coming Oct. 15 is The Witching Season. Reminiscent of television shows such as “Tales from the Darkside” and “Tales from the Crypt,” The Witching Season is a five-episode anthology of horror and suspense on one disc that delivers original tales of terror that capture the spirit of the Halloween season.

Concert Film ‘Pretenders With Friends’ Available in Blu-ray Combo Pack From MVD

The concert film Pretenders With Friends, which features the rock band The Pretenders with other rock luminaries, is available now in a Blu-ray/DVD/CD Combo Pack from MVD Entertainment Group.

In the film, the Grammy Award-winning, multi-platinum selling band  — featuring the legendary Chrissie Hynde — performs with special guests, including Iggy Pop, Shirley Manson of Garbage, Kings of Leon and Incubus. The film was recorded live at the Decades Rock Arena in Atlantic City, N.J.

Songs include “Brass in Pocket”; “Message of Love” by Incubus, “I’m Only Happy When It Rains” by Shirley Manson, “Precious”; “Candy” by Iggy Pop and Chrissy Hynde; “Talk of the Town”; “Back on the Chain Gang”; “Drive” by Incubus; “Mystery Achievement”; “Fools Must Die” by Iggy Pop; and a “Middle of The Road” encore performance featuring The Pretenders with Iggy Pop, Incubus, Kings of Leon and Shirley Manson.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

The DVD includes bonus interviews with band members, a slide show and trailers.

‘Ladyworld’ to Hit DVD and VOD Aug. 27 From MVD

The horror thriller Ladyworld will come out on DVD and VOD Aug. 27 from MVD Entertainment Group.

Cleopatra Entertainment will theatrically release the film nationwide Aug. 2.

Ladyworld — a modernized all-girl story inspired by Lord of the Flies — stars Ariela Barer, Annalise Basso (Captain Fantastic), Ryan Simpkins (Brigsby Bear, The House), Odessa Adlon, Maya Hawke (“Stranger Things” season three), Tatsumi Romano, Zora Casebere and Atheena Frizzell. It follows eight teenage girls who are trapped in an endless birthday party after a massive earthquake. The girls’ sanity and psyches dissolve as they run out of food and water. Eventually, they regress to their basic instincts, exploiting each other’s fears and insecurities.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Ladyworld enjoyed recent success on the festival circuit, including BFI London Film Festival, Fantastic Fest, TIFF Next Wave, Denver Film Festival and SF Indie Fest.

The film will have an East Coast premiere Aug.2 at the Cinema Village in New York and a West Coast premiere Aug. 2 at the Arena Cinelounge in Los Angeles with a Q&A with director Amanda Kramer and cast.

‘Weird Science,’ Bigelow’s Debut ‘The Loveless’ and Classic ‘Hold Back the Dawn’ Coming to Blu-ray From Arrow and MVD in July

The 1980s teen comedy Weird Science, Kathryn Bigelow’s debut feature The Loveless and the classic Oscar nominee Hold Back the Dawn are among the films on the July Blu-ray slate from Arrow Video and MVD Entertainment Group.

First up July 2 is the late 1970s rock-n-roll comedy FM. Oscar-nominated John A. Alonzo directs this story of radio station mutiny. After being forced to play more commercials, including military recruitment ads, DJs and other employees take control and fight their corporate bosses by playing as much music as possible. The new HD release, transferred from the original camera negatives, features extras including a new interview with the film’s star Michael Brandon; a new interview with writer Ezra Sacks; “The Spirit of Radio,” a newly filmed video appreciation of the era of FM radio and the FM soundtrack by film and music critic Glenn Kenny; a gallery of original stills, promotional images and soundtrack sleeves; original trailers; a reversible sleeve featuring two original artwork options; and for the first pressing only, an illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by writer and critic Paul Corupe.

Due July 9 is Oscar-winner Bigelow’s debut feature (co-directed by Monty Montgomery) The Loveless. Set in the 1950s, The Loveless is the story of a motorcycle gang heading to the races in Daytona. Along the way they stop in a small southern town, leaving the locals less they pleased. Willem Dafoe, also making his debut, stars. The Loveless is presented restored and in HD for the first time, with a new transfer approved by Montgomery and director of photography Doyle Smith. Extras include a new audio commentary with Montgomery, moderated by Elijah Drenner; making-of featurettes; a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Gilles Vranckx; and for the first pressing only, an illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Peter Stanfield.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

On July 16 come two releases, 1941’s Hold Back the Dawn and 1990s horror flick The Chill Factor.

Nominated for six Oscars, Hold Back the Dawn stars Charles Boyer and Olivia de Havilland in the story of one man’s hope of making it to the United States by marrying a citizen. The plan is to leave his would-be bride upon making his way into the country, but the plan has a few hiccups thanks to a determined immigration officer and a true love that begins to blossom. Presented in HD for the first time, the release includes extras such as new audio commentary by film scholar Adrian Martin; “Love Knows No Borders,” a newly filmed video appreciation by film critic Geoff Andrew; a career-spanning onstage audio interview with de Havilland recorded at the National Film Theatre in 1971; an hour-long radio adaptation of Hold Back the Dawn from 1941 starring Boyer, Paulette Goddard and Susan Haywood; a gallery of original stills and promotional images; the original trailer; a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Jennifer Dionisio; and for the first pressing only, an illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by writer and critic Farran Smith Nehme.

The Chill Factor, also known as Demon Possessed, is the only film directed by producer Christopher Webster. In the film, a group of friends out on a snowmobile trip seek refuge when one of them gets knocked unconscious following an accident. They locate an abandoned cabin to take cover. The cabin happens to hold a number of bizarre religious artifacts, and they mistakenly awaken a terrible evil. Extras include a new audio commentary with special effects artist Hank Carlson and horror writer Josh Hadley; a new on-camera interview with makeup artist Jeffery Lyle Segal; a new on-camera interview with production manager Alexandra Reed; a new on-camera interview with stunt coordinator Gary Paul; a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Marc Schoenbach; and for the first pressing, only a collector’s booklet featuring new writing by Mike White.

Steelbook packaging

Due July 23 is the 1980s John Hughes classic Weird Science available in regular and steelbook packaging. Starring Anthony Michael Hall, the comedy follows a pair of nerds that attempt to create the perfect woman via their computer. The release features a new 4K restoration from the original negatives and includes the original theatrical version as well as the extended version. As an added bonus, a standard definition transfer of the edited-for-TV release is included. Additional special features include an archive making-of documentary; new interviews with special makeup creator Craig Reardon, composer Ira Newborn, supporting actor John Kapelos and casting director Jackie Burch; a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Tracie Ching; and for the first pressing only, an illustrated collectors’ booklet featuring new writing on the film by Alexandra Heller-Nicholas and Amanda Reyes.

Jean-Claude Van Damme’s ‘Double Impact’ Available on Blu-ray From MVD Rewind Collection

MVD Entertainment Group has released another Jean-Claude Van Damme action classic on Blu-ray in its MVD Rewind Collection, Double Impact: Special Collector’s Edition.

Already under the MVD Rewind Collection are collector’s editions of Van Damme’s Black Eagle and Lionheart.

Double Impact (1991), co-produced by Michael Douglas and co-starring Geoffrey Lewis (The Devil’s Rejects), Bolo Yeung (Bloodsport), Alonna Shaw (King of New York) and Cory Everson (Natural Born Killers), features Van Damme in the dual roles of Chad and Alex Wagner, twin brothers who were separated after their parents’ brutal murder. Years later, the two couldn’t be more different: Chad is a slick Beverly Hills fitness instructor, while Alex is a rough and tumble smuggler on the gritty streets of Hong Kong. When fate throws them together again, Chad and Alex discover that there’s one thing they have in common: they’re both fighting machines determined to enact revenge on their parents’ killers.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Bonus features include a feature-length retrospective documentary about the making of the film from writer-producer Richard Schenkman (The Man From Earth) that includes brand new interviews with star and co-writer Van Damme, director and co-writer Sheldon Lettich, producer Ashok Amritraj, co-star Cory Everson-Donia, co-star and fight coordinator Peter Malota, and “Chad” and “Alex” photo doubles Jeff Rector and Jerry Rector; an hour of deleted and extended scenes including a newly unearthed alternate ending; “Double Impact: Anatomy of a Scene,” with Lettich highlighting how one of the film’s biggest action set pieces was constructed; behind-the-scenes featurettes; trailers; cast and crew interviews; and a mini-poster.

‘The Illusionist,’ ‘Winter Passing’ and ‘Resurrecting the Champ’ Among Star-Studded Films Joining MVD Marquee Collection

The MVD Marquee Collection is adding five films from Yari Film Group to its lineup on DVD and Blu-ray Disc.

Due June 25 are Resurrecting the Champ, Winter Passing and The Illusionist.

Resurrecting the Champ, directed by Rod Lurie (The Contender), stars Samuel L. Jackson and Josh Hartnett with Alan Alda, Kathryn Morris, Teri Hatcher, David Paymer and Peter Coyote. In the film, sportswriter Erik Kernan (Hartnett) wants nothing more than to discover a story great enough to make headlines. When he meets Champ (Jackson), a former boxing champion living on the streets, he knows he has a shot to save them both. Recording his newfound friend’s tale of triumph and defeat, Kernan gets his story and his fame. But as Champ’s tale falls under more scrutinizing eyes, Kernan learns what truly makes a story great is the quality of the man behind it. Bonus material includes a feature audio commentary from Lurie, a behind-the-scenes featurette, interviews with the cast and crew, and the original theatrical trailer.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Winter Passing is an offbeat film about homecoming and reconciliation that features Zooey Deschanel, Will Ferrell, Ed Harris, Amy Madigan, Dallas Roberts, Michael Chernus, Anthony Rapp, Sam Bottoms and Rachel Dratch. When a book editor (Madigan) offers to buy the love letters of Reese Holden’s (Deschanel) parents, she returns home to recover them, only to find her widowed dad (Harris) golfing upstairs, sleeping outside and living with roommates — a pretty grad student (Amelia Warner) and a quirky wannabe musician (Ferrell). Bonus material includes a behind-the-scenes featurette and the original theatrical trailer.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

The Illusionist stars Paul Giamatti and Edward Norton along with Jessica Biel, Rufus Sewell, Eddie Marsan and Aaron Taylor-Johnson. In the film, acclaimed illusionist Eisenheim (Norton) has not only captured the imaginations of all of Vienna, but also the interest of the ambitious Crown Prince Leopold (Sewell). But when Leopold’s new fiancée (Biel) rekindles a childhood fascination with Eisenheim, the Prince’s interest evolves into obsession and the city’s chief inspector (Giamatti) finds himself investigating a shocking crime. As the Inspector engages him in a dramatic challenge of wills, Eisenheim prepares for his most impressive illusion yet. Bonus material includes a feature audio commentary from writer/director Neil Burger, “The Making of the Illusionist” featurette, the “Jessica Biel on the Illusionist” featurette and the original theatrical trailer.

Taking 18 years from the start of production to theatrical release, Shortcut to Happiness finally makes its debut on Blu-ray and DVD July 16. Originally titled The Devil and Daniel Webster, the film was to be the directorial debut of Alec Baldwin. With the film plagued by investor problems and rumored creative differences, Baldwin had his director credit removed from the film and replaced with the pseudonym Harry Kirkpatrick. Producer Bob Yari rescued the film from bankruptcy court and finished it without Baldwin’s participation. It received limited theatrical screenings in 2007. Years later, it aired on Showtime and Starz channels. Set in New York’s literary world, Shortcut to Happiness is a contemporary re-telling of the classic short story ”The Devil and Daniel Webster,” starring Baldwin, Dan Aykroyd, Anthony Hopkins, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Kim Cattrall, Bobby Cannavale, Amy Poehler and Darrell Hammond. It follows Jabez Stone (Baldwin), a down on his luck writer who sells his soul to the devil (Love-Hewitt) in exchange for fame and fortune. When things don’t turn out as planned, Stone ultimately decides that he wants his old life again and enlists the help of Daniel Webster (Hopkins) in order to win his soul.

Finally, Sept. 17 comes Find Me Guilty from director Sidney Lumet (Serpico, Network, Dog Day Afternoon). Vin Diesel stars with Peter Dinklage, Annabella Sciorra, Alex Rocco, Ron Silver and Linus Roache in this true story. When police arrest 20 members of the Lucchese crime family, the authorities offer Jackie Dee DiNorscio (Diesel) a bargain: a shortened prison term if he’ll testify against his own. But the wisecracking DiNorscio has other ideas. Refusing to cooperate, he decides to defend himself at his own trial and proceeds to turn the courtroom upside-down, culminating in one of the most shocking verdicts in judicial history. Bonus material includes the “A Conversation with Director Sidney Lumet” featurette, the original theatrical trailer and three TV spots.

Mike’s Picks: ‘Desert Fury’ and ‘My Name Is Julia Ross’

Desert Fury

Kino Lorber, Drama, $19.95 DVD, $29.95 Blu-ray, NR.
Stars Lizbeth Scott, John Hodiak, Burt Lancaster, Wendell Corey, Mary Astor.
1947.
The revisionist word has gotten around on this once critically drubbed Technicolor potboiler. The movie is heavier than it needs to be on people standing around and talking to each other, though, to be sure, the talk can be stinging. But the electric three-strip Technicolor and the attendant decor go along way toward carrying the movie and its notably twisted subtext before we get to some brutal action at a roadside eatery in the final reel.
Extras: The bonus commentary is another exceptional one by Imogen Sara Smith.
Read the Full Review

My Name Is Julia Ross

MVD/Arrow, Mystery, $39.95 Blu-ray, NR.
Stars Nina Foch, Dame May Whitty, George Macready.
1945. Somewhere around the time we spot George Macready cutting up women’s clothing with scissors as his elderly mother looks on, the thought is cemented for good that My Name Is Julia Ross isn’t your standard garden-variety ‘B’ from 1940s Columbia Pictures.
Extras: In addition to a detailed print intro by critic Adrian Martin as part of Arrow’s always slick-in-the-good-sense packaging, this Julia Ross release features a commentary by noir expert Alan K. Rode.
Read the Full Review