Newsletter - FOR THE WEEK OF June 22nd, 2009


This Week's Highlights

Jó napot kívánok! - steaming thru the summer months with limited releases we still have Lee (Spike and Ang), Jarmusch, Besson and some pleasant surprises almost exclusively on Blu-ray, but we have some keen SD-DVDs coming early next week. There are fresh Calendar Updates, a new contest, sales and more.....
TOOLBAR - NEW BUTTONS ADDED! (you spoke - we listened) - THE 'DVDBeaver Toolbar'! Give it a test drive! I've created a very simple toolbar for Film-Fans/DVD-o-philes/cinephiles. It embeds effortlessly within Internet Explorer 5.0+ (Windows Vista/XP/2000) and Firefox 1.0.1+ (Windows, Mac, Linux). It offers quick links to Searching both the Net (via Google) and DVDBeaver directly, Amazons, Asian etailors, Forums (Criterion, Home Theater, AVS, Rotten Tomatoes, Film Noir), IMdb, DVDBasen, Beaver links, Blu-ray information, Cinephile Blogs/Journals (Rosenbaum, Kehr, Acquarello etc.). What do you think? FOR MORE INFORMATION / AVAILABLE HERE *** (We can adjust this to suit popular opinion - on-the-fly - no re-install required!)
June 22nd CONTEST - identify the clip on the CONTEST PAGE to win brand new sealed Blu-ray of The Day the Earth Stood Still 2008 -  Best of luck all!
BIG THANKS!: DVDBeaver would not exist without the support of many patrons - those who generously donate, and especially those who use our Amazon(s), CD Japan, HKFlix and YesAsia links. That's it. When you go to Amazon - PLEASE use one of our links to get there (they are on every page - top and bottom - and we have 5000 webpages). It costs you absolutely nothing and we get a small commission on items you purchase. This helps pay our bills - in fact it's the only thing that pays our bills.
STRATEGIES: The best way to take full advantage of Amazon is to use...
PRE-ORDERs - lock in at the discount price by ORDERING - if perchance you decide against the purchase you have until the release date to cancel - at no charge AND if you will purchase more than 35 DVDs (or anything) in a 365 day period (and live in the Continental US) it makes excellent financial sense to subscribe to Amazon

If there are DVD titles you'd like us to cover - please feel free to recommend!

Gary at 2ze dot com


- Blu-rays from only Ł8.98 at Amazon UK HERE


• SALE STILL ON FOR SOME CRITERIONs at AMAZON (Blu, Pre-order and others): El Norte [Blu-ray] (37% OFF!), The 400 Blows [Blu-ray] (45% OFF!), The Last Emperor [Blu-ray] (37% OFF!), The Man Who Fell to Earth [Blu-ray] (37% OFF!), Ace in the Hole (37% OFF!), Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (35% OFF!), Last Year at Marienbad [Blu-ray] (32% OFF!), Wages of Fear [Blu-ray] (32% OFF!), The Seventh Seal [Blu-ray] (32% OFF!), Drunken Angel (32% OFF!), Alexander Korda's Private Lives (25% OFF!), The Third Man [Blu-ray] (37% OFF!), Chungking Express [Blu-ray] (37% OFF!), The Last Metro [Blu-ray] (32% OFF!), Bottle Rocket [Blu-ray] (35% OFF!), Empire of Passion (27% OFF!)


• SALES: US Blu-ray up to 53% OFF        UK Blu-ray 2 for 3 SALE       Amazon France Blu-ray SALE (BUY 1 get 1 FREE!)

LATEST ADDITIONS to the Calendar: (PRE-ORDER & save!):

Gojira (Godzilla) [Blu-ray] (Ishiro Honda, 1954) Genius Products

Hero [Blu-ray] (Yimou Zhang, 2002) - Buena Vista Home Video

Karloff & Lugosi Horror Collection (The Walking Dead (1936), Frankenstein-1970 (1958), You'll Find Out (1940), Zombies on Broadway (1945) - Warner Home Video

Paul Newman: The Tribute Collection - The Long, Hot Summer (1958) Rally 'round the Flag, Boys! (1958) , From the Terrace (1960) , Exodus (1960) , The Hustler (1961) , Adventures of a Young Man (1962), What a Way to Go! (1964), Hombre (1967), Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) , Towering Inferno (1974), Buffalo Bill and the Indians, or Sitting Bull's History Lesson (1976) , Quintet (1979) The Verdict (1982) - 20th Century Fox

Silverado [Blu-ray] (Lawrence Kasdan, 1985) Sony Pictures

The Informers [Blu-ray] (Gregor Jordan, 2009) Senator

Sex, Lies, and Videotape [Blu-ray]  (Steven Soderbergh, 1989) Sony

Requiem for a Dream [Blu-ray] (Darren Aronofsky, 2000) Lions Gate

K-19: The Widowmaker [Blu-ray] (Kathryn Bigelow, 2002) Paramount

Iron Monkey [Blu-ray] (Woo-ping Yuen, 1993) Buena Vista Home Video

The Legend Of Drunken Master [Blu-ray] (Chia-Liang Liu, 1994) Buena Vista Home Video

Deep Impact [Blu-ray] (Mimi Leder, 1998) Paramount

 Zatôichi [Blu-ray] (Takeshi Kitano, 2003) Buena Vista Home Video

The Firm [Blu-ray] (Sydney Pollack, 1993) Paramount

Blacula/Scream Blacula Scream - 20th Century Fox

Soul Power (Jeffrey Levy-Hinte, 2008) - R2 UK Eureka [Masters of Cinema]

Soul Power [Blu-ray] (Jeffrey Levy-Hinte, 2008) - R'B' UK Eureka [Masters of Cinema]


Momitsu BDP-899 -Region FREE Blu-ray Player advertised as the World's first truly region freeBlu-ray and DVD player. See the Beaver scoop on this incredible new product.


ONE VOICE (not Ellsworth Monkton Toohey):  I'd probably lean to the penetrating Waltz With Bashir as our highest recommendation of the week and also Lust, Caution which looks stunning in 1080P. I've been having some second thoughts about Universal's removal of the filters in their Blu-ray of Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing - while I think it looks very good from a detail standpoint, removing the filter looks to have altered the filmmaker's desired appearance beyond what may be acceptable. However, I do lean to the alteration of a 1.85 aspect ratio for Sexy Beast and Kingsley's intense performance. I'm a big fan of Meirelles' Blindness and really enjoyed revisiting it on Blu-ray. Jim Jarmusch's Dead Man is a great film but the forced French subs and limitations in transfer updating leave us no option but to dismiss. Leon is a very watchable film but I am still investigating the excessive yellowness. Leonard appears to have gotten something out of both The Greatest Game Ever Played and The Siege despite the latter's MPEG-2 encode.

P.S. watched The Italian Job late Sunday afternoon and it's a fabulous Blu-ray that we strongly recommend! Wow - a lot of effort went into this region FREE disc 


The Italian Job BR - In this classic crime film, small-time crook Charlie Croker (Michael Caine) organizes a motley group of thieves to steal four million worth of gold bullion from an armoured car in Turin, Italy. The mastermind of the heist is Mr. Bridger (Noel Coward), an experienced convict who has come up with the idea, but can't take part in its execution because he's in jail. To pull off the plan, the gang must tie up traffic in the center of the city to divert attention from the robbery, and ultimately make off with their booty undetected. The caper leads to one of the most exciting automobile chases ever filmed. Blu-ray Release date: June 15th, 2009


The Siege BR - As it happened, my first experience with The Siege was last night, and I was fascinated with the movie as a political statement. It wasn't even a reach for me to see the Annette Bening character as a metaphor for the way the U.S. sleeps with the "enemies" of our "enemies" only to be bombed to the point of non-existence (in a political sense) for our trouble. Blu-ray Release date: June 9th, 2009

Waltz With Bashir
BR - 'Waltz With Bashir" is a devastating animated film that tries to reconstruct how and why thousands of innocent civilians were massacred because those with the power to stop them took no action. Why they did not act is hard to say. Did they not see? Not realize? Not draw fateful conclusions? In any event, at the film's end, the animation gives way to newsreel footage of the dead, whose death is inescapable. Blu-ray Release date: June 23rd, 2009

The Code
BR - Set against a backdrop of the Russian mafia in New York City – and do not for one moment confuse this movie with Cronenberg's Eastern Promises – master art thief, Keith Ripley, solicits up and coming jewel thief Gabriel Martin to partner up in a heist of two Faberge eggs from Romanovs – an impossible job even if these guys were Tom Cruise twice over. But before they can say "nyet" the big bad Russians kidnap Ripley's goddaughter and threaten to kill her if they do not bring their bounty to them. Meanwhile the local police burglary unit, headed by Lt. Weber (Robert Forster) who has long wanted to catch Ripley with the goods, is headed off at the pass by the FBI who claim they have interests of their own in this case. Blu-ray Release date: June 23rd, 2009

The Greatest Game Ever Played
BR - There's something simultaneously enticing and off-putting about the title, don't you think? And then to learn that the sport is golf, and that the game of the title is one I've never even heard of – well, that . . . actually sparked my interest. You see, a couple years ago I was visiting my cousin in Los Angeles, where his father was guesting for the summer. During the extended weekend, my cousin's new HDTV was on every waking hour, tuned to the U.S. Open. I had always known of my uncle's interest in golf. I even remember what it was like to discover his set of clubs in his mother's cellar in the 1940s. So there was nothing else for it but learn something of the game. Blu-ray Release date: June 16th, 2009

Sexy Beast
BR - Riveting in his intensity, Ben Kingsley delivers "his best performance ever" (Premiere Magazine) in this high-voltage crime thriller that crackles with chilling style and wit. A savage gangster named Don Logan (Kingsley) is met with resistance when he tries to recruit a retired pal (Ray Winstone) for "one last job." But Logan just won't take no for an answer... Blu-ray Release Date: June 15th, 2009

Do the Right Thing
BR - The hottest day of the year explodes on-screen in this vibrant look at a day in the life of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. Featuring a stellar ensemble cast that includes Danny Aiello, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Richard Edson, Giancarlo Esposito, Robin Harris, Samuel L. Jackson, Bill Nunn, Rosie Perez, and John Turturro, Spike Lee’s powerful portrait of urban racial tensions sparked controversy while earning popular and critical praise. Blu-ray Release Date: June 30th, 2009

BR - ''ROCKERS'' is another Jamaican movie with the sparkle of ''The Harder They Come''  which it manages to resemble but not imitate. In fact, ''Rockers'' is in many respects the better of the two. ''The Harder They Come'' had the invaluable advantage of coming first, and the area both films cover is almost narrow enough to make a second seem superfluous. But ''Rockers'' holds its ground, thanks to its funny, offbeat players and sinuous reggae score. Blu-ray Release date: June 16th, 2009

Lust, Caution
BR - Lust, Caution—do any two words define the central dichotomy of human existence more succinctly? No mere movie, perhaps, could live up to such a richly evocative title, and Variety’s review of Ang Lee’s new espionage melodrama—which won the top prize at this year’s Venice Film Festival, just two years after Lee’s Brokeback Mountain nabbed the same award—was only the first of many to complain that the film’s caution-to-lust ratio is less than favorable. Far too much has been made, hype-wise, of its explicit, few-holds-barred, NC-17 sex scenes, which Lee unleashes only after roughly two hours of minutely observed PG parrying; clearly, early viewers anticipated more heedless thrusting and fewer close-ups of mah-jongg tiles. Blu-ray Release Date: September 26th, 2008

BR - Where is Encino Man when we need him, I ask you? Have you noticed there has been a general decline in the energy and focus of Brendan Fraser lately? With such diverse films as George of the Jungle and Gods and Monsters well behind him, and such lazy performances as we've seen in the latest Mummy movie and Adventure to the Center of the Earth, Fraser seems well on his way to becoming the next Eddie Murphy. In all fairness, these last have not been the sort of movies one yearns to sink one's teeth into. And Inkheart is no different. Blu-ray Release date: June 23, 2009

BR - Blindness does have its shortcomings, the chief of which is its length. The narrative momentum breaks down because Meirelles draws things out too long in many scenes. He makes a point and then continues to hammer it in over and over — I get it already. On the other hand, one very effective scene, the rape sequence, was executed well and is an integral part of this movie, one I’m glad they kept. I was concerned about it because advanced word had it that the principals were considering cutting it from the film. And that would have robbed the film of much of its impact. Blu-ray Release Date: April 3rd, 2009

Dead Man
BR - Jim Jarmusch's Dead Man, a disturbing, mysterious black-and-white western, opens with someone named William Blake (Johnny Depp), a recently orphaned accountant from Cleveland, traveling west on a train with the promise of a job at a metal works in a town called Machine. He keeps dozing off and waking to new sets of fellow passengers, including several who fire their guns out the windows at a herd of buffalo. (Such occurrences were common in the 1870s, encouraged by the government as a means of wiping out Indians by eliminating one of their staples; in 1875, over a million buffalo were slaughtered.) Blu-ray Release Date: November 5th, 2008

BR - Besson seems fascinated by the "Pygmalion" story, by the notion of a feral street person who is transformed by education. He crosses that with what seems to be an obsession with women who kill as a profession. These are interesting themes, and if "The Professional" doesn't work with anything like the power of "La Femme Nikita," it is because his heroine is 12 years old, and we cannot persuade ourselves to ignore that fact. It colors every scene, making some unlikely and others troubling. Blu-ray Release Date: June 11th, 2009


Next 2 weeks on the Calendar

Week of June 22nd, 2009


Ŕ l'aventure (Jean-Claude Brisseau, 2009) R2 UK Axiom Films

The Andrzej Munk Trilogy: Eroica/Bad Luck/Man on the Tracks (Andrzej Munk, 1957) POLART

Andrzej Munk Trilogy - Facets

Colorful (Ryutaro Nakamura, 2000) Adv Films

Dragon Hunters [Blu-ray] (Guillaume Ivernel, 2008) - Peace Arch Home Entertainment

The Garth Method (Gregory Pakis, 2004) Vanguard

Last Year At Marienbad (Alain Resnais, 1962) Criterion
Last Year At Marienbad
[Blu-ray] (Alain Resnais, 1962) Criterion

My Dinner With Andre (Louis Malle, 1981) Criterion

Parade (Jacques Tati , 1974) R2 UK - BFI

Phoebe in Wonderland (Daniel Barnz, 2007) Image Entertainment

Tokyo Sonata (Kiyoshi Kurosawa, 2008) R2 UK Masters of Cinema

Tokyo Sonata [Blu-ray] (Kiyoshi Kurosawa, 2008) R2 UK Masters of Cinema

Waltz With Bashir (Ari Folman, 2008) Sony Pictures Classics
Waltz With Bashir [Blu-ray] (Ari Folman, 2008) Sony Pictures Classics



Week of June 29th, 2009


Beyond Rangoon (John Boorman, 1995) Warner

British Cinema: Renown Pictures Crime & Noir (Blackout, Bond of Fear, Home To Danger, Meet Mr. Callaghan, No Trace, Recoil) - VCI Entertainment

Che: Part One (Steven Soderbergh, 2008) R2 UK Optimum
Che: Part One [
Blu-ray] (Steven Soderbergh, 2008) R2 UK Optimum
Che: Part Two (Steven Soderbergh, 2008) R2 UK Optimum
Che: Part Two [
Blu-ray] (Steven Soderbergh, 2008) R2 UK Optimum

Do the Right Thing [Blu-ray] (Spike Lee, 1989) Universal Studios

Flawless [Blu-ray] (Michael Radford, 2007) Magnolia

Golden Age Noir (1952-1955) - 7X1/2 hour playhouse episodes starring Joanne Woodward, Dick Powell, Lee Marvin, Ida Lupino etc. directed by Blake Edwards, Robert Mulligan, Robert Aldrich etc. - RYKO Distribution

Japanese Miscellany (9 Souls, Bullet Ballet, Wild Life, Full Metal Yakuza, Younf Thugs: Nostalgia, Onibi: The Fire Within, Mobsters' Confessions & an Obsession) Arts Magic

Marc Isaacs Collection: Lift / Travellers / Calais: The Last Border -R2 UK Second Run

The Red Shoes [Blu-ray] (Powell/Pressburger, 1948), UK R'B' ITV DVD

Ruby Blue (Jan Dunn, 2008) Cinequest

Tokyo! [Blu-ray] (Joon-ho Bong, Leos Carax, Michel Gondry, 2008) Liberation

Two Lovers [Blu-ray] (James Gray, 2008) Magnolia Home Entertainment


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