By ANGELA DAWSON
Front Row Features
A Life at Stake (Film Noir)
Cinedigm, the leading independent streaming entertainment company serving enthusiast fan bases, announced today that The Film Detective (TFD), a media streaming network and film archive that restores and distributes classic films, is releasing a special edition version of the forgotten film noir, “A Life at Stake” (1955), on Blu-ray and DVD Tuesday Sept. 7.
From director Paul Guilfoyle comes this highly charged mystery starring Angela Lansbury (“Murder She Wrote”) and Keith Andes (“The Girl Most Likely”). At the time, Lansbury—starring in an unlikely role as charming femme fatale—was already a double Oscar nominee for 1944’s “Gaslight” and 1945’s “The Picture of Dorian Gray.”
In this independent production from the waning golden years of film noir, spoiled, young Doris Hillman (Lansbury) invites struggling architect Edward Shaw (Andes) to be her husband’s partner in a lucrative real estate deal. However, when Edward becomes romantically involved with Doris, he learns that something deadly is going on. There’s a life at stake—and it could be his own.
In addition to a newly restored presentation, with a striking 4K transfer from archival film elements, exclusive bonus materials include audio commentary and the full-color booklet, “A Career at Stake: Angela Lansbury and the Last Days of the B Noir,” by professor and film scholar, Jason A. Ney; and “Hollywood Hitch-hikers: Inside the Filmakers,” an original production from Ballyhoo Motion Pictures.
“A Life at Stake” will be available on Blu-ray for a suggested retail price (SRP) of $24.95 and on DVD for $19.95 (SRP).
The Gateway (Crime Thriller)
Lionsgate will release the gritty, edge-of-your-seat crime thriller “The Gateway” on Blu-ray and DVD Tuesday Sept. 7.
The edgy crime thriller stars an ensemble cast of Shea Whigham (“American Hustle”), Olivia Munn (“X-Men: Apocalypse”), Taryn Manning (“Orange Is the New Black”), Mark Boone Junior (“Donnybrook”), Taegen Burns (“Dumplin’”), with Frank Grillo (“The Grey”) and two-time Academy Award nominee Bruce Dern (“The Hateful Eight”). The film is directed by Michele Civetta (“Agony”) who co-wrote the screenplay with Alex Felix Bendaña and Andrew Levitas (“Lullaby”).
Whigham plays Parker, a down-on-his-luck social worker who finds himself in over his head when he tries to protect his client from her recently paroled husband. Parker races against time to save the family from the violent threat of the maniacal drug dealer and his crew, desperate to reclaim their priceless stash.
According to director Civetta, he set the film in St. Louis as a metaphor for the crossroads of America today. A Gilded Age town that has fallen on hard times, outgrown its original destiny as the Gateway city to the west, and now a playground for drug trafficking and interstate contraband resulting in gang violence. The city conjures the ethos of a lawless environment presided over by a dysfunctional corrupt government administration that has really forgotten the everyday person.
The Blu-ray and DVD of “The Gateway” contain special featurette on “Living Legends: The Cast of ‘The Gateway,’” and the movie’s trailer.
“The Gateway” also is now in select theaters, on Apple TV and available where you rent movies.
Great White (Action Adventure/Thriller)
“Great White” arrives on Blu-ray and DVD Tuesday Sept. 7, form RLJE Films, a unit of AMC Networks, and Shudder, AMC Networks’ premium service for horror, thrillers and the supernatural.
The action adventure/thriller stars Katrina Bowden (“Piranha 3DD”), Aaron Jakubenko (“Tidelands”), “Kimie Tsukakoshi (“Riptide”), Time Kano (“Neighbours”) and Te Kohe Tuhaka (“Love and Monsters”).
The film marks the directorial debut of Martin Wilson and was written by Michael Boughen (“Dying Breed”).
A blissful tourist trip turns into a nightmare for five passengers when their seaplane goes own near a shipwreck. Stranded miles from shore in an inflatable life raft, they find themselves in a desperate fight for survival as they try to make it to land before they either run out of supplies or are taken by a menacing pack of sharks lurking just beneath the surface. Bonus features include a making of featurette and a behind-the-scenes photo gallery.
“Great White” also is available now On Demand and on Digital platforms.
Higher Ed (Comedy)
The never-before-released comedy “Higher Ed” arrives on DVD Tuesday Sept. 7, from Lightyear.
At the ripe age of 19, Ed Green (Pras from the Grammy winning group Fugees) is a dismal failure. Resigned to smoking and selling weed for Sadico, the local psychotic drug dealer, his world is turned upside down when Sadico’s sister pins her pregnancy on Ed and the dealer vows to kill him.
Unsure of where to hide, Ed skips town and enrolls at a local college, where he masquerades as a student on a track scholarship and does his best to blend in. Unfortunately, he’s also assigned a dorm room (420!), with roommate “Bud” Carter (Aries Spears), who quickly becomes a negative influence making it hard for Ed to fall back on old habits. Ed’s troubles mount as he is located by a Mexican gang and he starts falling for campus beauty Lisa (Leila Arcieri), whom he’ll have to lure away from Big Man on Campus Craig (Hill Harper).
The plot thickens when police set up a sting operation to address the growing problem of illegal drugs on campus.
This was Jean-Claude LaMarre’s first film, who subsequently went on to make numerous Hollywood hits including “Chocolate City,” “Trapped” and “Pastor Jones.”
The “Higher Ed” DVD will be available for $14.95 (SRP).
RLJE Films, a unit of AMC Networks, will release “Slaxx” on DVD, VOD and Digital HD Tuesday Sept. 7.
A possessed pair of jeans is brought to life to punish the unscrupulous practices of a trendy clothing company. Shipped to the company’s flagship store, the killer jeans proceed to wreak carnage on staff who are locked in overnight to set up the new collection.
Directed by Elza Kephart (“Go in the Wilderness,” “Graveyard Alive”) who co-wrote the film with Patricia Gomez Zlatar (“Graveyard Alive”), “Slaxx” stars Romane Denis (“S*** in a Good Way”), Brett Donahue (“Private Eyes,” “Bad Blood”), Sehar Bhojani (“The Handmaid’s Tale,” “Seth and Ethnicity”), and Stephen Bogaert (“American Psycho,” “It”).
Special features include “The Story Behind ‘Slaxx,’” “The Pants are Alive,” Producing a Killer Pants Movie,” “Call in the Death Consultant,” a behind-the-scenes photo gallery and more.
RLJE Films will release “Slaxx” on DVD for $27.97 (SRP).
Zack Snyder’s Justice League (Fantasy Action)
The age of heroes is upon us when the Warner Bros. Pictures and DC full-length HBO Max Original feature film “Zack Snyder’s Justice League” arrives on 4K, Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD Tuesday Sept. 7.
The screenplay is by Chris Terrio, from a story by Terrio, Snyder and Will Beall, based on characters from DC, Superman created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster.
Determined to ensure Superman’s (Henry Cavill) ultimate sacrifice was not in vain, Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) aligns forces with Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) with plans to recruit a team of meta-humans to protect the world from an approaching threat of catastrophic proportions. The task proves more difficult than Bruce imagined, as each of the recruits must face the demons of their own pasts to transcend that which has held them back, allowing them to come together, finally forming an unprecedented league of heroes. Now united, Batman (Affleck), Wonder Woman (Gadot), Aquaman (Jason Momoa), Cyborg (Ray Fisher) and The Flash (Ezra Miller) may be too late to save the planet from Steppenwolf, DeSaad and Darkseid and their dreadful intentions.
The Ultra HD Blu-ray disc of “Zack Snyder’s Justice League” will feature a Dolby Atmos soundtrack remixed specifically for the home theater environment to place and move audio anywhere in the room, including overhead.
The “Zack Snyder’s Justice League” on 4K UHB Combo Pack will be available for $44.95 (SRP). The Blu-ray will be available for $35.99. The DVD will be available for $28.98 (SRP).
Star Trek: The Original 4-Movie Collection (Sci-Fi/Fantasy)
Just in time to commemorate the 55th anniversary of the Sept. 8, 1966 airing of the very first “Star Trek” episode, Paramount Home Entertainment and CBS Home Entertainment will debut “Star Trek: The Original 4-Movie Collection” on 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray for every fan’s collection Tuesday Sept. 7.
For the first time ever, experience the original four “Star Trek” films— “Star Trek: The Motion Picture,” “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan” (both the theatrical and director’s cut), “Star Trek III: The Search for Spock” and “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home” in stunning 4K Ultra HD.
Newly remastered from original elements for optimal picture quality, each film is presented with Dolby Vision and HDR-10. This exceptional collection includes four Ultra HD discs, as well as four remastered Blu-ray discs with hours of previously released bonus content. are presented on both the 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray discs, along with access to digital copies of the theatrical version of each film.
New on the “Star Trek: The Motion Picture” 4K Ultra HD and the Blu-ray discs is an isolated score in Dolby 2.0. Also on both discs is a previously released commentary by Michael Okuda, who designed the look of animated computer displays on the starship Enterprise in the 1980s films, scenic and visual effects supervisor Denise Okuda, writer/producers Judy and Garfield Reeves-Stevens and illustrator Daren Dochterman. The Blu-ray disc also contains the following featurettes in High Definition (HD): “Library Computer,” “The Longest Trek: Writing the Motion Picture,” “Special Star Trek Reunion” and trailers, along with “Starfleet Academy SCISEC Brief 001: The Mystery Behind V’ger,” deleted scenes, storyboards and TV spots in standard definition.
The “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan” Ultra HD and Blu-ray discs each include a commentary by director Nicholas Meyer (director’s cut and theatrical versions), and a commentary by Meyer and Manny Coto, who was a showrunner on “Star Trek: Enterprise” on the theatrical version. The Blu-ray additionally includes text commentary by the Okudas (on the director’s cut), “Library Computer” in HD, “The Genesis Effect: Engineering ‘The Wrath of Khan,’” as well as bonus features on Production, The “Star Trek” universe, a farewell to Ricardo Montalban (Khan) and more.
Each disc of the “Star Trek II: The Search for Spock” movie includes a commentary by director and star Leonard Nimoy, writer/producer Harve Bennett, director of photography Charles Correll and actress Robin Curtis, as well as a separate commentary by producer Ronald D. Moore and Michael Taylor. The Blu-ray additionally includes the featurette “Library Computer” in HD, “as well as bonus features on Production, the “Star Trek” universe and a photo gallery.
“Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home” Ultra HD and Blu-ray discs each include a commentary by stars William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy, a separate commentary by co-writers/producers on the rebooted “Star Trek” Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman. The Blu-ray additionally includes the featurette Library Computer in HD, “as well as bonus features on Production, the “Star Trek” universe, visual effects, original interviews with stars Nimoy, Shatner and DeForest Kelley, tributes to “Star Trek” creator Gene Roddenberry and featured artist Mark Lenard, as well as a production gallery, storyboards and the theatrical trailer in HD.
Each of the original four “Star Trek” films also will be available individually on Blu-ray with bonus content mentioned above, and contain digital copies of the theatrical version of each film.