There is a lot of news this week and it’s partially DVD/Blu-ray related. I discuss a few upcoming biopics, as well as running down the list of what’s new in DVD/Blu-ray.
I don’t know how many Breaking Bad fans read my blog, but I was downright jubilant to hear that star Bryan Cranston will be playing famous blacklisted writer Dalton Trumbo in the upcoming biopic, Trumbo. The Jay Roach directed film will tell of Trumbo’s infamous blacklisting from Hollywood after refusing to name names to the House UnAmerican Activities Committee. Trumbo would spend time in prison and go on to secretly write countless screenplays under assumed names (one of which was the hugely successful Roman Holiday) and won two Academy Awards. The biopic will explore Trumbo’s life post-HUAC and how it affected his career and relationship with his wife and children. Cranston is consistently amazing in everything, from the leading role on Breaking Bad to smaller roles in popcorn blockbusters. Hollywood biopics like this are slowly gaining steam and a man like Trumbo deserves to have his story told on the format that he loved to work in. Trumbo is slated for a 2014 start-date and depending on its distribution plans it could be an Oscar contender next year!
Talk about dead-ringers, this next bit of casting info had me giddy as well. While there’s some confusion as to the biopic’s title and release date, Huffington Post is reporting that White Collar star Matt Bomer has been tapped to play the lead role of Montgomery Clift in an upcoming biopic. The film, either titled Monty Clift or Clift, will focus on Clift’s friendship with Elizabeth Taylor after their pairing in A Place in the Sun. Clift’s story is a goldmine for an actor hoping to get an Academy Award, and Clift’s life was certainly filled with enough intrigue and sadness for an actor to sink his teeth into. The problem I have is with the story they’re focusing on. With Elizabeth Taylor already being covered in two past television biopics (one with enough critical hatred to sink a ship) haven’t we soaked the Taylor train dry? Why not focus strictly on Clift who was pretty famous in his own right. Regardless, I’m happy that Clift will be seeing the biopic treatment at all. Clift or Monty Clift (I prefer the former if Hollywood’s curious) will either be released in 2014 or 2015.
New on Blu-ray and DVD
Kino Classics: Kino continues to gear up for Halloween (and I have the upcoming reviews to prove it) after their recent release in the Mario Bava Collection and Bela Lugosi’s The Devil Bat. Their next release will be the 1961 horror film Night Tide starring the late Dennis Hopper. The movie has received the HD transfer from its original 35mm print and includes audio commentary with Hopper and director Curtis Harrington; a two-part interview with Harrington and the original theatrical trailer. The story of a man and the possible mermaid that captures his attention will be available to own on October 15th.
Cohen Media Group: If you want to visit the granddaddy of film you have the opportunity with Cohen Media’s upcoming release of D.W. Griffith’s Intolerance. The massive production that still stands in Los Angeles today will be released on DVD and Blu-ray November 5th. Bonus content hasn’t been revealed, but it stands to reason that this needs to be a fairly packed disc considering the movie’s place in history. Griffith is a divisive director with his first film, Birth of a Nation, but Intolerance is all about the spectacle and hopefully the transfer to Blu-ray serves it well.
Warner Archive: This week’s releases are all about Jimmy Stewart and a few more Paramount releases. The Jimmy Stewart offerings this week consist of: one of Stewart’s first starring roles in Of Human Hearts (1938); Stewart with Ginger Rogers in Vivacious Lady (1938), and Stewart with Rosalind Russell in No Time for Comedy (1940). On top of those Warner Archive will release the Paramount features Branded (1950), the hilariously titled I Married a Monster From Outer Space (1958), The Adventurers (1970) and spoof film The Big Bus (1976). As always, these are manufactured on demand and can be purchased via the Warner Archive website.
A freelance film critic whose work fuels the Rotten Tomatoes meter. I've been published on The Hollywood Reporter, Remezcla, and The Daily Beast. I've been featured in the L.A. Times. I currently run two podcasts, Citizen Dame and Ticklish Business.