April 18, 2006

DVD Pick of the Week: Event Horizon

This week brings with it a blast from the recent past. It also has an Oscar nominee, a torture-fest, and an eagerly anticipated foreign title. Even more importantly it brings with it the next generation of home video, HD DVD is here with the first four titles.

This weeks pick is that blast from the past, Event Horizon. You remember that film, that sci-fi/horror mish-mash from one of the more reviled directors among the internet film-fan community, Paul W.S. Anderson, not to be confused with Paul Thomas Anderson (who also garners a mixed reaction, although to a lesser and different extent). Paul Anderson doesn't make good films, but he does happen to make films that to one extent or another always seem to entertain me.

In my ever so humble opinion, Event Horizon is the best film that Anderson has made. I really liked the creepy Hellraiser via Alien vibe. The story has Laurence Fishburne and Sam Neill leading a team into deep space to ascertain why a long lost ship has suddenly reappeared on the edge of the galaxy. What secrets does it hold? What happened to the crew and what did it bring back?

This is not the long rumored director's cut. I think the chances of that are slim to non-existent. What we do get is upgraded picture and sound, which I hear is phenomenal, including a DTS track (which I do not believe is actually listed on the case). In addition to that, there are a host of extra features delving into the creation of the film.

While I really would have liked that director's cut, I do look forward to the upgrade and features that this release offers.

Also coming out this week:
  • Breakfast on Pluto. Don't know much about this, but I do recall it getting very good reviews. Now I may get a chance to prove those good reviews right.
  • Hostel. Eli Roth's latest plays out like two films in one, it starts like a buddy comedy, and ends with a torturous finish that would make Saw fans blush.
  • Mrs. Henderson Presents. This Oscar nominee had some very good reviews. The film centers on a theater trying to survive during WWII.
  • Natural City. This is a sci-fi film out of Korea that I have heard very good things about. Hopefully it lives up to the good word.
  • Return of the Living Dead 4: Necropolis. This started life as a Sci Fi Channel Original, with tenuous, at best, connections to the rest of the series.

The premiere line of HD DVD's includes four titles. Not sure how widespread they are, or how easy it will be to find that initial Toshiba player. Here are the movies:

  • The Last Samurai. I loved this movie, it should play well with the added resolution.
  • Million Dollar Baby. I don't think that this will be all that different, or rather, not as impressive as the other releases.
  • The Phantom of the Opera. This has some fantastic set design. It should look great.
  • Serenity. I think this is the one to see. Big action, effects, colors. If you could see me, you would see me drooling.

As for me and the next generation, I am going to sit it out and see how everything shakes out.

What are you getting this week?


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