Newsletter - FOR THE WEEK OF October 5th, 2009


This Week's Highlights

Mbote na nge! - 15 new reviews or comparisons. Luis Bunuel, Francis Ford Coppola, more Abel Gance, Jean Renoir, some backstreet noir, Criterion, Iconic TV, an Indian silent, Classic Santa, FEATURE DVD and Blu-ray of the Month and much more.There are some minimal Calendar Updates, new sales and an easy contest (with an excellent prize) and more...
TOOLBAR 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!)

October 5th CONTEST - identify the clip on the CONTEST PAGE to win a brand NEW sealed Criterion (REISSUE) DVD of Salo -  Best of luck all!


FEATURE DVD and Blu-ray of the Month chosen for October HERE

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

Gary at 2ze dot com


60% OFF OVER 100 Blu-rays HERE

HEFTY SALE on Blu-rays at HERE

2001: A Space Odyssey [Blu-ray] (69% OFF!)
Batman Begins [
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True Blood: The Complete First Season (HBO Series) [
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Unforgiven [
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V for Vendetta [
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Bullitt [
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The Shining [
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Pan's Labyrinth [
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The Departed [
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The Dirty Dozen [
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The Aviator [
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Appaloosa [
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The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford [
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The Cowboys [
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BFI - SALE on these Region FREE Blu-rays:

The Magick Lantern Cycle [Blu-ray] (56% OFF!)

Comrades [Blu-ray] (40% OFF!)

Herostratus And Don Levy Shorts [Blu-ray] (27% OFF!)

All The Right Noises [Blu-ray] (32% OFF!)

Separation (Blu-ray) (32% OFF!)

Winstanley [Blu-ray] (32% OFF!)

Bill Douglas Trilogy [Blu-ray] (32% OFF!)

Man of Violence [Blu-ray] (30% OFF!)

London In The Raw [Blu-ray] (57% OFF!)

Nighthawks/Strip Jack Naked - Nighthawks 2 [Blu-ray] (56% OFF!)

Primitive London [Blu-ray] (57% OFF!)
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The Red Desert [Blu-ray] (56% OFF!)

Salo, Or The 120 Days Of Sodom [Blu-ray] (56% OFF!)

The Decameron [Blu-ray] (56% OFF!)

Arabian Nights [Blu-ray] (56% OFF!)

The Canterbury Tales [Blu-ray] (56% OFF!)

 The Loneliness Of The Long Distance Runner [Blu-ray] (52% OFF!)

The Bed Sitting Room [Blu-ray] (57% OFF!)

Saturday Night, Sunday Morning [Blu-ray] (53% OFF!)

And there is Up to 70% OFF UK Blu-rays HERE

Amazon Blu-ray Blowout HERE

The Movies & TV Boxed Set Sale (up to 60% OFF!)

Blu-rays half price at Amazon UK HERE


• SALES: US Blu-ray up to 53% OFF        

•  Amazon France Blu-ray SALE (BUY 1 get 1 FREE!)

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

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

Transformers/Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen  [Blu-ray] - Dreamworks Video

Law of Desire (Pedro Almodóvar, 1987) Sony Pictures

Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels [Blu-ray] (Guy Ritchie, 1998) Universal Home Video

Beauty in Trouble (Jan Hrebejk, 2006) Menemsha Films

Eagles Over London [Blu-ray] (Enzo G. Castellari, 1970) Severin

Land of the Lost [Blu-ray] (Brad Silberling, 2009) Universal Studios


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.
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  The incredible Oppo Digital BDP-83 Blu-ray marvel is now available for online ordering... HERE (REGION FREE FIRMWARE AVAILABLE NOW)


ONE VOICE (not Ellsworth Monkton Toohey):  A bit of a passive week digitally speaking but I was highly impressed with The Prisoner - Complete Series - region 'B'-locked Blu-ray by Network out of the UK. It's an impressive package with a fabulous looking transfer. I've always been a fan of Coppola's Dracula and now is our opportunity to extol it both included in the modern trilogy Horror Classics Collection or individually. Branagh's Frankenstein is a better film than most give it credit for and Jack as the werewolf in Wolf has a following as well. Thanks to Brian for identifying the superior version of Renoir's This Land is Mine. Both Bunuel's Death in the Garden and Lee Isaac Chung's Munyurangabo are extremely worthy films with imperfect transfers. The former is essential for many. Criterion gives a hint of their stacked version of Mira Nair's Monsoon Wedding DVD with the Blu-ray comparison coverage shortly following. Miracle on 34th Street is a staple of the Christmas season and the ornaments and holiday essence shine much brighter in 1080P. Silent films are reviewed with two more essentials of that genre - A Throw of Dice with its mythical Indian base and La Roue with it's incredible production history - both recommended. Eric exposes us to the Australian horror Nature's Grave and Gregory covers two more digitally-putrid Noirs - including what may be the worst image of all time on Whispering City. If you like a bit of cheese with your 'B' sci-fi's then Ghost Ship may be just the Friday night ticket...


Death in the Garden - The garden of the title is a terrifying South American jungle, through which an international cast of refugees flees after a surprise banana-republic revolution. This 1956 French-Mexican production was obviously designed as escapist entertainment, but in the hands of director Luis Bunuel it becomes a little more than that. As things get curiouser and curiouser, it's interesting to see how close Bunuel's surrealist vision is to the expected extravagancies of genre filmmaking. No masterpiece, but a prime example of subversive cinema. DVD Release Date: October 27th, 2009

Munyurangabo - After stealing a machete from a market in Kigali, Munyurangabo and his friend, Sangwa, leave the city on a journey tied to their pasts. Munyurangabo wants justice for his parents who were killed in the genocide, and Sangwa wants to visit the home he deserted years ago. Though they plan to visit Sangwa s home for just a few hours, the boys stay for several days. From two separate tribes, their friendship is tested when Sangwa's wary parents disapprove of Munyurangabo, warning that Hutus and Tutsis are supposed to be enemies. DVD Release Date: October 6th, 2009

Monsoon Wedding - Cultures and families clash in Mira Nair’s exuberant Monsoon Wedding, a mix of comedy and chaotic melodrama concerning the preparations for the arranged marriage of a modern upper-middle-class Indian family’s only daughter, Aditi. Of course there are hitches—Aditi has been having an affair with a married TV host; she’s never met her husband to be, who lives in Houston; the wedding has worsened her father’s hidden financial troubles; even the wedding planner has become a nervous wreck—as well as buried family secrets. But Nair’s celebration is ultimately joyful and cathartic: a love song to her home city of Delhi and her own Punjabi family. DVD Release Date: October 20th, 2009

The Prisoner - Complete Series
BR - Though it ran for a mere 17 episodes, the sci-fi spy drama THE PRISONER is one of television's biggest cult hits. The brainchild of star Patrick McGoohan, the series followed the adventures of No. 6 (McGoohan), a former secret agent who is being held captive in a highly secured village, the location of which remains a mystery throughout the series. This groundbreaking and innovative show reached an unfortunate end as TV bosses got cold feet following low ratings and increasingly strange story lines. But McGoohan himself took control and steered the show to an ending that continues to cause great debate among THE PRISONER's faithful fans. This release includes the entire series of the show, digitally restored. Blu-ray Release date: September 28th, 2009

Ghost Ship
BR - While it offers nothing new for horror buffs, Ghost Ship relocates its haunted house clichés to an eerily effective setting. The Italian luxury liner Antonia Graza, its fate a mystery for 40 years, has suddenly reappeared in the chilly Bering Sea. Lured by a seemingly harmless proposition, Gabriel Byrne and Julianna Margulies lead a salvage crew (including Ron Eldard, Margulies's offscreen partner and fellow ER alumnus) to claim the wreck. But a grisly prologue--in which we witness the horrific fate of the ship's crew and passengers--makes it clear that bad things are going to happen. And they do... with the predictability of tomorrow's sunrise. Blu-ray Release date: October 6th, 2009

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein
BR - During the course of more than thirty adaptations, sequels, spin-offs, rip-offs, and spoofs, the name of "Frankenstein" has become associated with one of the world's most recognizable movie monsters. The creature, as typified by Boris Karloff with outstretched arms, flat-topped head, and ubiquitous neck bolts, has met the likes of Dracula, the Wolfman, and even Abbott and Costello. It has been played by (among others) Charles Ogle, Karloff, Lon Chaney, Bela Lugosi, Glenn Strange, Christopher Lee, Fred Gwynne (as Herman Munster), and now, Robert De Niro. Rarely, however, has a cinematic interpretation of "the daemon" approached the level of three-dimensionality with which it is portrayed in the novel. Blu-ray Release date: October 6th, 2009

BR - The movie contains most of the materials of traditional werewolf movies. Much significance is attached to the full moon, and horses shy away when Nicholson comes near, and his sense of smell develops to the point where he can tell that a man had tequila for his breakfast. There is of course the obligatory eccentric old scientist with the foreign accent, who explains werewolves to Nicholson. And beautiful women to be his lovers and/or victims. Blu-ray Release date: October 6th, 2009

Bram Stoker's Dracula
BR - This is it, the quintessential vampire movie. Based on Bram Stoker's 1897 gothic masterpiece "Dracula." There are many arguments as to who was Stoker's influence for The Count, and the most rabid purists insist that it is NOT Vlad the Impaler. However, this movie forms it's basis around the Vlad story, and I'm obliged to agree that this is the most familiar of all the various versions of the tale of Count Dracula, and whether or not this is where Stoker got his influence is a moot point and does not make this film any less of a masterpiece. Blu-ray Release date: October 2nd, 2007

Miracle on 34th Street
BR - Six year old Susan has doubts childhood's most enduring miracle Santa Clause. Her mother told her the "secret" about Santa a long time ago, so Susan doesn't expect to receive the most important gifts on her Christmas list. But after meeting a special department store Santa who's convinced he's the real thing, Susan is given the most precious gift of all - something to believe in. Blu-ray Release date: October 6th, 2009

A Throw of Dice - A Throw of Dice (Prapancha Pash) is the third film in a pioneering trilogy of silent films made through a unique partnership between German director Franz Osten and Indian actor-producer Himansu Rai, whose films combined documentary techniques with narratives derived from Indian myths and legends. After the beautiful Sunita nurses Ranjit back to health following dramatic events during a royal tiger hunt, his wicked rival Sohat persuades him to risk his kingdom and his love in a fateful game of dice.

La Roue - Taken to its bare bones, the story deals with Sisif, a locomotive engineer who saves Norma, an infant girl, from a train wreck and raises her as his adopted daughter. Norma thinks Sisif's son Elie is her brother, and when the two fall in love, she leaves to marry a virtual stranger. Sisif is also obsessed with her and the plot elaborates this triangular relationship. German director G. W. Pabst, an ardent admirer of La Roue, was encouraged by Gance's example to undertake his own remarkable explorations of human psychology in such silent films as Secrets of a Soul, Pandora's Box and Diary of a Lost Girl.

Jigsaw - In fact, its modest story of a young "assistant D. A." who investigates two murders and uncovers a vicious "hate group" is a neatly blueprinted fiction in every detailed respect, except that the jowlish villains are some vague sort of "mongers of hate." It is sluggishly directed by Fletcher Markle, who also co-authored the script, and almost indifferently played, where good playing would do the most for it, by Franchot Tone in the principal role.

Nature's Grave - Scripted by Australian horror regular Everett DeRoche (who also scripted the original), the remake follows the original fairly closely and that is perhaps its weakness. The actors and the filmmakers seem to be going through the motions. Blanks and his cinematographer deliver a slicker but bland image than the atmospheric original (the original's cinematographer Vincent Monton is credited here as 2nd unit DP) but the pacing and buildup of what should be odd occurrences is haphazard (the dugong corpse that makes its way up the beach seems thrown into the script as if the filmmakers remembered it at the last moment). It's bad but not in the sacrilegious way of many remakes and re-imaginings, it's just unnecessary. DVD Release Date: August 4th, 2009

Whispering City - Watchable minor film noir, that is competently directed by Fyodor Otsep from a story by George Zuckerman and Michael Lennox. The acting by Paul Lukas and Helmut Dantine is far beyond what you would expect in such a cheapie film. But the narrative has too many coincidental plot points to be believable, though the crisply told story is for the most part entertaining. The film is told in flashback by a tourist guide sleigh driver to two riders in Quebec City.

This Land is Mine - Renoir's second American film, made in the same brutal year as Stalingrad and El Alamein, is one of his quietest and least startling, featuring Laughton as a timid village schoolteacher 'somewhere in occupied Europe' who muddles his way to martyrdom. Both Laughton - happier in this role than many - and O'Hara are fine, but the film's main attractions remain the elegant Renoir set-ups (some recalling La Bête Humaine) and the script's unusual ethical stance: not that Nazism was wrong because it denied free enterprise, but that it was wrong because it stood against the possibility of Socialism, human dignity, and political emancipation.

Next 3 weeks on the Calendar


Week of October 5th, 2009


A Hard Day's Night [Blu-ray] (Richard Lester, 1964) Phantom Sound & Vision (BEAVER REVIEW)

Audition: 2-disc Collector's Edition [Blu-ray] (Takashi Miike, 1999) Shout! Factory (BEAVER REVIEW)

A Charlie Brown Christmas Deluxe Edition [Blu-ray] Warner

Beauty in Trouble (Jan Hrebejk, 2006) Menemsha Films

Contact [Blu-ray] (Robert Zemeckis, 1997) Warner (BEAVER REVIEW)

TCM Spotlight: Esther Williams, Vol. 2 (Thrill of a Romance / Fiesta / This Time for Keeps / Pagan Love Song / Million Dollar Mermaid / Easy to Love) - Warner

From The East (Chantal Akerman, 1993) Icarus Films

Ghost Ship [Blu-ray] (Steve Beck, 2002) Warner Home Video (BEAVER REVIEW)

Hell Is Sold Out (Michael Anderson, 1951) Music Video Dist

How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966): Deluxe Edition [Blu-ray] - Warner

Horton Hears a Who (1970) [Blu-ray] Warner

How To Be A Man (Classic Educational Shorts Volume 1) (1949-1970) - Kino

How To Be A Woman (Classic Educational Shorts Volume 2) (1948-1982) - Kino

Import Export [Blu-ray] (Ulrich Seidl, 2007) R0 UK Trinity (BEAVER REVIEW)

The Joyless Street (Georg Wilhelm Pabst, 1925) - R2 PAL Edition Filmmuseum

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

The Last Thakur (Sadik Ahmed, 2008) - R2 UK - Artificial Eye

The Long Good Friday [Blu-ray] (John Mackenzie, 1980) R'B' UK - Anchor Bay

Marlene (Maximillian Schell, 1984) - Kino

Coffret marcel l'herbier : eldorado ; l'homme du large - R2 FR Paramount

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein [Blu-ray] (Kenneth Branagh, 1994) Sony Pictures (BEAVER REVIEW)

Miracle on 34th Street [Blu-ray] (George Seaton, 1947) Twentieth Century Fox (BEAVER REVIEW)

Munyurangabo (Lee Isaac Chung, 2007) Film Movement (BEAVER REVIEW)

The Number 23 [Blu-ray] (Joel Schumacher, 2007) New Line Home Video

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs [Blu-ray] (David Hand, 1937) Disney (BEAVER REVIEW)
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (Collector's Book Set) [
Blu-ray] Disney
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (DVD Packaging) [
Blu-ray] Disney
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (Dwarf Plush Gift Set) [
Blu-ray] Disney
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (Limited Edition Collector's Set) [
Blu-ray] Disney

Time Bandits [Blu-ray] (Terry Gilliam, 1981) R'B' UK - Optimum

Trick 'r Treat [Blu-ray] (Michael Dougherty, 2008) Warner Home Video

Wolf [Blu-ray] (Mike Nichols, 1994) Sony Pictures (BEAVER REVIEW)

Wolf / Dracula / Frankenstein Trilogy [Blu-ray] - Sony Pictures


Week of October 12th, 2009


Adoration [Blu-ray] (Atom Egoyan, 2008) Sony Pictures

American Violet [Blu-ray] (Tim Disney, 2008) Image Entertainment

Eagles Over London [Blu-ray] (Enzo G. Castellari, 1970) Severin

Eclipse Series 18: Dušan Makavejev Free Radical - Criterion Collection

Land of the Lost [Blu-ray] (Brad Silberling, 2009) Universal Studios

Lovecraft: Fear of the Unknown [Blu-ray] (Frank H. Woodward, 2008) - Cinevolve Studios

The Proposal [Blu-ray] (Anne Fletcher, 2009) Touchstone Home Entertainment


Week of October 19th, 2009


The 39 Steps [Blu-ray] (Alfred Hitchcock, 1935) R'B'UK ITV DVD

The Adventures of George the Projectionist (Tim Higham, 2006) Cheney Films Releasing

Black Rain (Shohei Imamura, 1989) Animeigo

Cheri (Stephen Frears, 2009) Miramax

Easy Rider [Blu-ray] (Dennis Hopper, 1969) Sony

The Elephant King (Seth Grossman, 2006) E1 Entertainment

The Complete Fritz Lang Mabuse Box Set - Dr. Mabuse, the Gambler, 1922 - The Testament of Dr. Mabuse, 1933 - The 1000 Eyes of Dr. Mabuse, 1960 - Eureka Masters of Cinema

Fados (Carlos Saura, 2007) Zeitgeist Films

Gaumont - le cinéma premier, vol. 2 - Paramount Home Entertainment

Hamlet [Blu-ray] (Laurence Olivier, 1948) R'B' UK ITV DVD

Henry V [Blu-ray] (Laurence Olivier, 1944) R'B' UK ITV DVD

Ichi the Killer [Blu-ray] (Takashi Miike, 2001) Tokyo Shock

It's Garry Shandling's Show: The Complete Series - Shout! Factory

Katyn (Andrzej Wajda, 2007) R2 UK Artificial Eye

Monsoon Wedding (Mira Nair, 2001) - Criterion Collection (BEAVER REVIEW)

Monsoon Wedding [Blu-ray] (Mira Nair, 2001) - Criterion Collection

Moon in the Gutter (Jean-Jacques Beineix, 1983) Cinema Libre

Phantom/Die Finanzen Des Großherzogs - R2 UK - Masters of Cinema

Seven Samurai  [Blu-ray] (Akira Kurosawa, 1954) R'A' Toho YesAsia, CDJapan, Amazon.JP

Summer Storm (Douglas Sirk, 1944) VCI Entertainment

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (Two-Disc Special Edition) [Blu-ray] (Michael Bay, 2009) - Paramount

Wicked Wife (Bob McNaught, 1953) Music Video Dist

The William Castle Film Collection (13 Frightened Girls / 13 Ghosts / Homicidal / Strait-Jacket / The Old Dark House / Mr. Sardonicus / The Tinglerand/ Zotz!) - Sony Pictures

X-Men Origins: Wolverine [Blu-ray] (Gavin Hood, 2009) R'B' UK - 20th Century Fox


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