Newsletter - FOR THE WEEK

OF December 28th, 2009


This Week's Highlights

Tashgasha! - We trust those who celebrate had a heart-warming Christmas and holiday time with family and friends. Our last newsletter of 2009 has Fellini, Kathryn Bigelow and Brian De Palma rising to Blu-ray. Only 12 reviews or comparisons this week so we celebrate the past 365 days with tidbits that must surely find some keen interest in our meager community. We go from clandestine noir to Bollywood horror extremes. be aware of The last day of the BIG sale, another contest (with a great Blu-ray prize) and more... We wish you all the best for a healthy ushering-in of 2010 - Adam and I are toiling away at producing our Poll results for our DVD and Blu-ray of the Year 2009 voting - STAY TUNED!


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!)

DECEMBER 28th CONTEST - identify the clip on the CONTEST PAGE to win NEW Blu-ray of Eastern Promises!- 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


The Last Days of Disco (Criterion Collection) Price: $17.99 (55% OFF!)
8 1/2 - (Criterion Collection) Price: $17.99 (55% OFF!)
The Friends of Eddie Coyle (Criterion Collection) Price: $13.99 (53% OFF!)

Seven Samurai - 3 Disc Remastered Edition (Criterion Collection Spine # 2) Price: $21.99 (56% OFF!)
That Hamilton Woman - Criterion Collection Price: $17.99 (55% OFF!)
Last Year at Marienbad (Criterion Collection) Price: $18.99 (52% OFF!)
The Third Man - Criterion Collection (2-Disc Edition) Price: $17.99 (55% OFF!)
Two-Lane Blacktop - Criterion Collection Price: $17.99 (55% OFF!)
The Seventh Seal (Criterion Collection) Price: $13.99 (53% OFF!)
My Dinner with Andre (Criterion Collection) Price: $17.99 (55% OFF!)
Homicide - Criterion Collection Price: $17.99 (55% OFF!)
M - 2 Disc Special Edition - Criterion Collection Price: $17.99 (55% OFF!)
Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom - Criterion Collection Price: $17.99 (55% OFF!)

Repulsion- Criterion Collection [Blu-ray] (55% OFF!)

In the Realm of the Senses [Blu-ray] (60% OFF!)
Chungking Express [Blu-ray] (42% OFF!)
Last Year at Marienbad [Blu-ray] (57% OFF!)

The Last Emperor [Blu-ray] (57% OFF!)
Pierrot Le Fou - Criterion Collection [Blu-ray] (40% OFF!)
The 400 Blows [Blu-ray] (56% OFF!)

Gomorrah (Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] (40% OFF!)
The Seventh Seal (Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] (55% OFF!)
Wages of Fear [Blu-ray] (57% OFF!)
The Man Who Fell to Earth [Blu-ray] (42% OFF!)

The Searchers [Blu-ray] (1956) Price: $7.99 (53% OFF!)
Wall-E (Two-Disc and BD Live) [Blu-ray] Price: $17.99 (50% OFF!)
Coraline (Blu-ray/DVD Combo + Digital Copy w/ 3D) [Blu-ray] Price: $14.99 (63% OFF!)
Baraka [Blu-ray] Price: $14.99 (57% OFF!)
The Wizard of Oz (70th Anniversary Ultimate Collector's Edition) [Blu-ray] Price: $42.99 (49%
Bram Stoker's Dracula [Blu-ray] Price: $9.99 (50%)
Sunshine Cleaning [Blu-ray] Price: $9.99 (75% OFF!)
The Aviator [Blu-ray] Price: $8.99 (69% OFF!)
Star Trek (Three-Disc +Digital Copy) [Blu-ray Price: $19.99 (50% OFF!)
Up (4 Disc Combo Pack with Digital Copy and DVD) [Blu-ray] Price: $19.99 (57% OFF!)
Monsters, Inc. (4-Disc Edition) [Blu-ray] Price: $21.49 (48% OFF!)
Planet Earth - The Complete BBC Series [Blu-ray] Price: $40.99 (59% OFF!)
Band of Brothers [Blu-ray] Price: $50.99 (49% OFF!)
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo) [Blu-ray] Price: $19.99 (50% OFF!)
The Godfather - The Coppola Restoration Giftset (The Godfather / The Godfather Part II / The Godfather Part III) [Blu-ray] Price: $49.99 (60% OFF!)
Fight Club [Blu-ray] Price: $15.99 (54% OFF!)
The Prisoner: The Complete Series [Blu-ray] Price: $49.99 (50% OFF!)
Pinocchio (Two-Disc 70th Anniversary Platinum Edition + Standard DVD+ BD Live) [Blu-ray] Price: $18.99 (47% OFF!)
2001: A Space Odyssey [Blu-ray]
$9.99 (67% OFF!)
Gone with the Wind (70th Anniversary Ultimate Collector's Edition) [Blu-ray]
$45.49 (46% OFF!)
Casablanca (Ultimate Collector's Edition) [Blu-ray]
$38.99 (40% OFF!)


UP to 59% OFF over 350 Blu-rays at Amazon Canada

46 Blu-rays at $9.99 or less at Amazon

The Blu-ray Blitz at Amazon UK--Up to 70% Off HERE

60% OFF OVER 100 Blu-rays HERE


Blu-ray Players UNDER $200 HERE

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!):

Mother [Blu-ray] (Joon-ho Bong, 2009) (Limited Edition) - CJ Entertainment

The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne (Jack Clayton, 1987) R2 UK Optimum Home Entertainment

The Films of Amos Gitai: Six Films From Israel (KADOSH / KIPPUR / KEDMA / ALILA / DEVARIM / YOM YOM) - Kino

Deadly Duo [Blu-ray] (Cheh Chang, 1971) Tokyo Shock

Alice [Blu-ray] (Nick Willing, 2009) Lions Gate

Alice in Wonderland (Norman Z. McLeod, 1933) Universal Studios

Fallen Angels [Blu-ray] (Wong Kar-Wai, 1995) Kino International

Humanoids From The Deep [Roger Corman Cult Classics] Shout! Factory

Up From The Depths / Demon Of Paradise [Roger Corman Cult Classics] Shout! Factory

Piranha (Joe Dante, 1978) (Roger Corman Cult Classics) Shout! Factory

Piranha  [Blu-ray] (Joe Dante, 1978) (Roger Corman Cult Classics) Shout! Factory

The Crazies [Blu-ray] (George A. Romero, 1973) Blue Underground

Vampyres [Blu-ray] (José Ramón Larraz, 1974) Blue Underground

Troma's War (Tromasterpiece Edition) (Michael Herz and Lloyd Kaufman, 1988) - Troma

The Damned United [Blu-ray] (Tom Hooper, 2009) Sony Pictures Entertainment

Wonderful World [Blu-ray] (Joshua Goldin, 2010) Magnolia Pictures

Astro Boy [Blu-ray] (David Bowers, 2009) Summit Entertainment

The Prisoner (Miniseries) - Warner Home Video

The Constance Talmadge Double Feature: Her Night of Romance (1924) / Her Sister From Paris (1925) - Kino

The Norma Talmadge Double Feature: Kiki (1926) / Within the Law (1923) - Kino

Le silence de la Mer [Blu-ray] (Jean-Pierre Melville, 1949) RB FR Paramount Home Entertainment

Danton [Blu-ray] (Andrzej Wajda, 1983) RB FR Paramount Home Entertainment


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ONE VOICE (not Ellsworth Monkton Toohey):  I guess the shared honors of this year-closing newsletter may be divided between Fellini's 8 1/2 and Kathryn Bigelow's The Hurt Locker. Both amazing films looking impressive in their new format transfers. Let's not forget the nostalgic rock-horror The Phantom of the Paradise - as memorable as it is evocative. Leonard reminds us of the interwoven spark of love and performance found in the original Fame. Gregory continues to expose the Warner Archive Noirs to us with the aggressively entitled Pay or Die - as well as The Man I Love and Tourneur's Experiment Perilous. Fritz Lang's Rancho Notorious gets coverage as well comparing it to the PAL counterpart. I must admit I am intrigued by The Gold Diggers - as the BFI DVD is reviewed by Brian. Eric forges ahead with his unique penchant for indefinable cult horror's like Love Bites, a comparison defining the best digital rendering of Les démoniaques - and the head-scratchingly unique Bollywood Horror Collection Vol. 2..... let's await with patience the wonders that 2010 will holf for us -  "That's All Folks"


Les démoniaques - Tanya (Joelle Coeur) and her team of wreckers lure ships to crash on the rocks in order to scavenge their cargo. One night, they discover two beautiful shipwrecked survivors who they proceed to rape and leave for dead. At the local tavern (festooned with macabre set decoration by Belgian designer Jio Berk of THE NUDE VAMPIRE and DEVIL'S NIGHTMARE), the drunken Captain experiences persecuting visions of the blood-covered girls so Tina leads them back to the scene of the crime only to discover the girls are still alive. They attempt to kill the girls again but they escape to an old abbey where they encounter a clown who introduces to the to a demon who by making love to them (of course) gives them supernatural powers to take vengeance on the wreckers who are already turning on each other out of guilt and paranoia. Although lacking Rollin's trademark naked vampires, DEMONIAQUES is great example of low budget French fantastique cinema. Drawing from serials and throwing in plenty of carnal eroticism, Rollin embodies an unusual story (for him) with elements familiar to his body of work (most notably fusing eroticism with decay which he did most successfully in the later IRON ROSE) with the sometimes naive or overstated (or expressionistic) acting appropriate to the style and atmosphere. Encore DVD Release Date: 30 August 2005

Fame BR - Fame begins with the kind of cutting that many imitate, but few do as well or with Parker's understanding. It's one thing to grant only a second or so per cut to suggest an excited fervent milieu of dancers and musicians in rehearsal; it's quite another to make each shot, artfully lit and photographed by Michael Seresin, count dramatically so that we know what is going on, why the shot is chosen and how it fits with the shots before and after. It takes not just a skilled director, but something of a musician to know how to use technique to reveal the spirit of the thing. But just as no amount of careful storyboarding will reveal the essence of a phrase, no amount of artful editing can make up for a contrived script, which, in the final analysis, Fame suffers from in its final reels. Blu-ray Release date: September 28th, 2009

Pay or Die - Based on real incidents in the life and death of Lt. Joseph Petrosino (Ernest Borgnine) of the New York police force, this tale set between 1906-1909 details the history of the lieutenant's fight to prove Sicilian Mafia involvement in crimes in his city. Lt. Petrosino has a series of dangerous close calls as he distinguishes himself by saving singer Enrico Caruso from a Mafia bomb outside the Metropolitan Opera, and by also saving the father of Adelina (Zohra Lampert) the woman he loves. Several other exploits eventually lead to Petrosino's trip to Sicily to nail evidence for the Mafia's activities in New York, and for a final meeting with destiny. This represented the last screen credit of scenarist Bertram Millhauser, who died in 1958; he had received his penultimate credit nine years before that, on the 1949 Tokyo Joe. DVD Release Date: September, 2009

The Man I Love - The Man I Love may not even be a true noir, every character in this story has a clear control over their fate and by each's own choice decides to go down an unhappy road, no fate or bad luck comes into play for these individuals. It lacks the hard boiled style of a Phil Karlson picture, and for that matter, how surprising is it to see that it's director happens to be Raoul Walsh, the Raoul Walsh who gave us the raw and realistic They Drive by Night (also featuring Lupino and co-star Alan Hale) and the brutal, ultra hard boiled gangster-noir hybrid White Heat. Who'd have thought that, for a director who seems to save any sort of sentimentality until his films final moments, would give us a whole picture full of characters whom only seemed to have felt melancholy, wistfulness, and regret? This is not the noir of the class of Spillane, nor is it of some sort of poetic tragedy like that of Out of the Past, but this is like something out of Edward Hopper's Nighthawks painting, all about a group of unhappy people in the big city...and if that isn't as noir as the former two, what is? DVD Release Date: July, 2009

Love Bites - Professional party crasher Antoine (Guillaume Canet, LA FIDELITE) is a night owl. He lives at a health club (his belonging are stored in a locker and he sleeps next to the pool by day) and he runs various scams to get into exclusive parties. When a bouncer that he has a running conflict with points out the limousine of the "King of the Night" Jordan, Antoine namedrops Jordan to get into a huge party given by reclusive millionaire Von Bulow (Jean-Marie Winling). On to his game, Von Bulow offers Antoine a million francs to find Jordan who, like Antoine, prowls the city's popular dives; but for very different reasons. Along the way, he meets Violaine (Asia Argento) whose name she points out is made up of the words viol (rape) and haine (hate) who it turns out is not the mysterious Jordan's girlfriend but his sister who is also a night owl who may be warning off Antoine or tempting him into danger. DVD Release Date: February 14th, 2006

Bollywood Horror Collection Vol. 2 - Largely lacking in unintentional hilarity (the intentional comedy varies from very funny to somewhat strained), VEERANA is a fairly well-sustained Ramsay Bros. horror movie (apart from the usual random musical numbers with the exception of Jasmin's musical numbers which while romantic in nature hint at an otherness appropriate to her monstrous femme fatale role). DVD Release Date: March 31, 2009

Rancho Notorious - "Rancho Notorious" (1952) centers on the rape and murder of its heroine, and the attempt by her fiancée to bring her attackers to justice. The film is deeply feminist, in taking with great seriousness the horrible crime of rape. The film opens with a powerful evocation of the tragedy of the crime, then chronicles the hero's relentless search for justice. DVD Release Date: October, 2009

Experiment Perilous - A mix of thrills, psychology and pathology. In 1903, Doctor George Brent meets a friendly older lady in train. She tells him that she is going to visit her brother Lukas and his lovely young wife Lamarr. In New York Brent hears that his train companion suddenly died. He meets Lamarr-Lukas, gets suspicious of Lukas's treatment of his wife and his trying to pass her for crazy. A mixup in bags reveals the diary of the deceased lady, confirms Brent's doubts. He tries to save Lamarr, whom he now loves. DVD Release Date: September, 2009

8 1/2 BR - One of the greatest films about film ever made, Federico Fellini’s 8 1/2 (Otto e Mezzo) turns one man’s artistic crisis into a grand epic of the cinema. Guido Anselmi (Marcello Mastroianni) is a director whose film—and life—is collapsing around him. An early working title for the film was La Bella Confusione (The Beautiful Confusion), and Fellini’s masterpiece is exactly that: a shimmering dream, a circus, and a magic act. The Criterion Collection is proud to present the 1963 Academy Award™ winner for Best Foreign-Language Film—one of the most written about, talked about, and imitated movies of all time. Blu-ray Release Date: January 12th, 2010

The Hurt Locker BR - The making of honest action movies has become so rare that Kathryn Bigelow's magnificent The Hurt Locker was shown mostly in art cinemas rather than multiplexes. That's fine; the picture is a work of art. But it also delivers more kinetic excitement, more breath-bating suspense, more putting-you-right-there in the danger zone than all the brain-dead, visually incoherent wrecking derbies hogging mall screens. Partly it's a matter of subject. The movie focuses on an Explosive Ordnance Disposal team, the guys whose more or less daily job is to disarm the homemade bombs that have accounted for most U.S. casualties in Iraq. But even more, the film's extraordinary tension derives from the precision and intelligence of Bigelow's direction. Blu-ray Release date: January 12th, 2010

The Phantom of the Paradise BR - A Faustain Rock Opera version of Phantom Of The Opera. Record producer Swan (Paul Williams) absconds with both the music and the female, Phoenix (Jessica Harper), from the composer Winslow Leach (William Finley). Disfigured by an injection-molding pressing plant, and now mask-donning, Leach plots revenge on Swan and his anticipated rock concert palace, The Paradise, by transforming onto 'The Phantom'. Leach signs a contract with Swan to complete the rock opera based on the life of Faust with Phoenix to star. Leach exacts his vengeance, Hunchback of Notre Dame style, when he is double crossed by Swan who instead hires pill-popping feminine male glam-rock prima donna Beef (Gerrit Graham). Blu-ray Release date: December 1st, 2009

The Gold Diggers - Celeste (Colette Laffont) is a computer clerk in a bank who becomes fascinated by the relationship between gold and power. Ruby (Julie Christie) is an enigmatic film star in quest of her childhood, her memories and the truth about her own identity. As their paths cross they come to sense that there could be a link between the male struggle for economic supremacy and the female ideal of mysterious but impotent beauty. DVD Release Date: December 28th, 2009

 Next 4 weeks on the Calendar

December 28th, 2009


9 [Blu-ray] (Shane Acker, 2009) Universal Studios (BEAVER REVIEW)

A Perfect Getaway [Blu-ray] (David Twohy, 2009) Universal Home Video

Family Guy Presents: Something Something Something Dark Side [Blu-ray] - R'B' UK 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment

The Gold Diggers (Sally Potter, 1983) R2 UK BFI (BEAVER REVIEW)

The Hurt Locker [Blu-ray] (Kathryn Bigelow, 2008) R'B' UK Lions Gate Home Entertainment (BEAVER REVIEW)

Jennifer's Body [Blu-ray] (Karyn Kusama, 2009) 20th Century Fox

London Story (Sally Potter, 1980) R2 UK BFI

Paranormal Activity (2-Disc) [Blu-ray] (Oren Peli, 2009) Paramount

Two for the Seesaw (Robert Wise, 1962) MGM

Women From The Lake Of Scented Souls (Fei Xie, 1993) R2 UK Escapi



January 4th, 2010


50 Dead Men Walking [Blu-ray] (Kari Skogland, 2008) Phase 4 Films (BEAVER REVIEW)

Cinema Paradiso [Blu-ray] (Giuseppe Tornatore, 1988) R'B' UK - Arrow Films

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs [Blu-ray] (Phil Lord + Chris Miller, 2009) Sony (BEAVER REVIEW)

Dogtown and Z-Boys [Blu-ray] (Stacy Peralta, 2001) Sony Pictures

The Green Berets [Blu-ray] (Ray Kellogg + John Wayne 1968) - Warner Home Video (BEAVER REVIEW)

Lorna's Silence (Jean-Pierre Dardenne + Luc Dardenne, 2008) Sony Pictures (BEAVER REVIEW)

Mesrine - Parts 1 & 2 [Blu-ray] (Jean-François Richet, 2008) R'B' UK Momentum Pictures


January 11th, 2010


8 1/2 [Blu-ray] (Federico Fellini, 1963) Criterion (BEAVER REVIEW)

Antichrist [Blu-ray] (Lars von Trier, 2009) Artificial Eye

The Brothers Bloom [Blu-ray] (Rian Johnson, 2008) Summit Entertainment

The Burning Plain [Blu-ray] (Guillermo Arriaga, 2008) Magnolia

La Cucina [Blu-ray] (Allison R. Hebble + Zed Starkovich, 2007) Anthem Pictures

The Hurt Locker [Blu-ray] (Kathryn Bigelow, 2008) Summit Entertainment (BEAVER REVIEW)

I Come with the Rain [Blu-ray] (Anh Hung Tran, 2008) AVEX

In the Loop [Blu-ray] (Armando Iannucci, 2008) IFC

Moon [Blu-ray] (Duncan Jones, 2009) Sony Pictures

Post Grad [Blu-ray] (Vicky Jenson, 2009) 20th Century Fox

The Simpsons: The Complete Twentieth Season [Blu-ray] 20th Century Fox


January 18th, 2009


According to Greta [Blu-ray] (Nancy Bardawil, 2009) Starz / Anchor Bay

Eclipse Series 19: Chantal Akerman in the Seventies - Criterion

Che (Steven Soderbergh, 2008) Criterion

Che [Blu-ray] (Steven Soderbergh, 2008) Criterion

Death in Love [Blu-ray] (Boaz Yakin, 2008) Screen Media

Deadly Duo [Blu-ray] (Cheh Chang, 1971) Tokyo Shock

Magnolia [Blu-ray] (Paul Thomas Anderson, 1999) Turner

Pandorum [Blu-ray] (Christian Alvart, 2009) Starz / Anchor Bay

The Queen of Spades (Thorold Dickinson, 1949) R2 UK Optimum

The Red Balloon [Blu-ray] (Albert Lamorisse, 1956) R'B' UK Network

Red Cartoons: Animated Films from East Germany - First Run Features

The Secret People (Thorold Dickinson, 1952) R2 UK Optimum

Streamers (Robert Altman, 1983) Shout! Factory

Suspiria [Blu-ray] (Dario Argento, 1977) RB UK - Nouveaux Pictures

Whiteout [Blu-ray] (Dominic Sena, 2009) Warner Home Video

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