Troy loves going through the Review Pile, mainly because he wants to split up coverage. He’s getting older and it takes him longer to think of what he wants to say. Things are changing, but eh.
The Christmas 2021 Review Pile begins with a selection of Paramount Presents titles: Nashville and A Place in the Sun
Nashville is one of the classic Robert Altman movies. While it’s going to be the next in the video series alongside A Place in the Sun, we figured it was best to go ahead and talk about the Blu-ray in the Review Pile. The Paramount Presents releases are great, but it still pales slightly to the Criterion release. I do dig the new 24 Tracks featurette about the movie. But, the commentary and trailer have been around for ages.
A Place in the Sun doesn’t get the love it deserves. It’s one of those great attempts by a mainstream studio to tap into the current Film Noir movement. Now, you also have to give Montgomery Clift and Elizabeth Taylor enough room to bat eyes and be heartthrobs. Shelley Winters blows it up in a supporting role as Clift’s possible love.
Honestly, I don’t see how The Coen Brothers haven’t tried to remake the movie yet. It feels closer to their Man Who Wasn’t There wheelhouse. We’ll probably get a remake from some kid commercial director who just makes a bland murder mystery.
Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home gave me a ton of grief on 4K UHD, so it goes in the review pile.
Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home is a fun movie. However, the opening of the disc kept giving me issues when trying to get the title. While everything else was ready, we kept popping off trying to get this fixed. It would work in a player and via streaming, but the disc would go nuts through the capture system. Pretty crazy.
While we bring up the 4K collection at the end of the year for Best Of Lists. It’s best to draw attention to what’s so great about the discs. You get the stellar 2160p transfer and lossless audio. The big win is that Dolby TrueHD track. It makes the attempt to free the whales and return to the future come to life.
It’s a Wonderful Life comes to Blu-ray for the 3rd or 4th time, but this time it has Recipes for the Review Pile
It’s a Wonderful Life gets a lot of releases around the Holidays. The big sell on this disc edition is the inclusion of the Bailey Family Holiday recipes. It’s pretty cool, as it gives you a chance to try the food and drink mentioned in the film. While the review pile isn’t meant to get this deep, I wanted to add onto the long form review we had for the 4K release. But, I feel that might wait for closer to the Holiday. If you don’t own it already, pick up the Blu-ray today.
The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron gets the complete series bow on DVD in the Review Pile
Jimmy Neutron was well after my time. I remember seeing the movie on a loop at a video store I worked at in college. Beyond that, the 22.3 hours of this run time proved to me one thing. While I have kids, I hate anything that might entertain them. But, I’m always surprised by the young writers for whom this is their thing.
To them I’ll say, you get period appropriate standard definition quality. All three of the Jimmy Timmy Power Hour episodes are on there and you get the pilot episode. Plus, there are featurettes and storyboards on a handful of episodes. Check it out if you’re a fan.
Younger: The Complete Series arrives Paramount in the Review Pile
Younger is a really strong Darren Star show. I love Sutton Foster and I still miss Bunheads every single day. I still can’t believe they got seven seasons out of this show. Hell, I can’t believe I kept Paramount Plus to watch the last season early. More than that, why wasn’t Martha Plimpton on the show earlier than she was?
The whole thing is this weird female fantasy about beating ageism. But the ageist culture of publishing is handled in the same way a Douglas Sirk movie handled marketing or whatever. Basically, it’s given the same rules and constraints of a middle school student’s imagination of what a career might be when they’re adults.
You get 10 discs packed with featurettes and bloopers for every single season. It’s pretty cool, but I think we should’ve received at least a Blu-ray release.
Scream arrived on 4K from Paramount/Miramax
Scream looks amazing in 4K. Even if you can some of that mid 90s horror aesthetic with weird grain and swift movements blurring key action. The rest of the film ages me more than anything in the Review Pile. Hell, I remember hearing MMMbop on the radio for the first time after seeing Scream. It’s weird the things you think about when watching things.
The 4K disc from Scream comes with featurettes and a commentary. You also get a digital code.
Coming Home in the Dark arrives to the Review Pile from Dark Sky
Coming Home in the Dark is one of those modern horror/suspense tales that I find myself watching and not quite enjoying. I threw it back into the review pile for its Blu-ray bow as a chance to re-evaluate the film. What happened was not quite different from my time spent watching The Hills Have Eyes again over the Thanksgiving weekend.
I don’t quite dig highway robbers and home invaders in the same way as other monstrous folk. It’s far too easy to have a lone psychopath break into a house and destroy lives. People will mark arguments for the narrative nature of Us vs. Them. Well, there’s not a lot of story to repel the psycho invading the security of your home. You don’t really want to know the invaders’ backstory.
The Blu-ray comes with a behind-the-scenes featurette as the sole special feature. However, I would have loved to have had a commentary explaining some of the choices.