By ANGELA DAWSON
Front Row Features
Big Fish (Fantasy Adventure)
Tim Burton’s beloved fantasy comedy “Big Fish” arrives for the first time on 4K Ultra HD Tuesday May 4, from Sony Home Entertainment.
The 2003 film stars Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney (“Murder on the Orient Express”), Billy Crudup (“Almost Famous”) and Jessica Lange (“King Kong”).
Throughout his life, Edward Bloom (McGregor) has always been a man of big appetites, enormous passions and tall tales. In his later years, portrayed by five-time Best Actor Oscar nominee Finney (“Erin Brockovich”), he remains a huge mystery to his son, William (Crudup). Now, to get to know the real man, Will begins piecing together a true picture of his father from flashbacks of his amazing adventures in this marvel of a movie.
The 4K Ultra HD disc includes the newly remastered film in 4K resolution from the original camera negative, with HDR10 as well as an all-new Dolby Atmos audio plus the original theatrical 5.1 audio. The Blu-ray disc includes the feature presented in HD, sourced from the new 4K master, as well as audio commentary by Burton, moderated by Mark Salisbury. Additionally, the Blu-ray includes the featurette: “The Character’s Journey: ‘Edward Bloom at Large,’ ‘Amos at the Circus’ and ‘Fathers and Sons.’” In “the Filmmaker’s Path” featurette, Tim Burton—the Storyteller is delved into as is the fairytale world, creature features and the author’s journal. Fans will also enjoy original cast interviews and behind-the scenes, and various Easter eggs, plus the theatrical trailer.
Judas and the Black Messiah (Historic Drama)
Academy Award-nominated dramatic thriller “Judas and the Black Messiah” arrives on Premium Video on Demand (PVOD), Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Tuesday May 4, from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.
The film is directed by Shaka King, marking his studio feature film directorial debut, and stars Oscar nominee Daniel Kaluuya, who won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor at this year’s Academy Awards. The film also stars Fred Hampton and Oscar nominee LaKeith Stanfield as William O’Neal. Dominique Fishback, Jesse Plemons, Ashton Sanders and Martin Sheen also star in the film. “Judas and the Black Messiah” features the Academy Award-winning original song “Fight For You,” sung by H.E.R.
FBI informant William O’Neal (Stanfield) infiltrates the Illinois Black Panther Party and is tasked with keeping tabs on their charismatic leader, Chairman Fred Hampton (Kaluuya). A career thief, O’Neal revels in the danger of manipulating both his comrades and his handler, Special Agent Roy Mitchell (Plemons). Hampton’s political prowess grows just as he’s falling in love with fellow revolutionary Deborah Johnson (Fishback). Meanwhile, a battle wages for O’Neal’s soul, and he must decide whether to join Hampton and his radical party or follow the orders of his boss, FBI Chief J. Edgar Hoover (Sheen) to subdue him.
“Judas and the Black Messiah” was nominated for six Academy Awards, for Best Picture, Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Daniel Kaluuya, LaKeith Stanfield), Cinematography (Sean Bobbitt), Original Song (“Fight For You,” music by H.E.R. and Dernst Emilie II, lyrics by H.E.R. and Tiara Thomas) and Original Screenplay (screenplay by Will Berson & Shaka King, story by Will Berson & Shaka King and Kenny Lucas & Keith Lucas). Kaluuya also won a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor—Motion Picture earlier this year.
Bonus features on the Blu-ray and DVD includes “Fred Hampton for the People,” where the filmmakers and cast discuss why telling Hampton’s story was important to them. Additionally, on the Blu-ray only, is the featurette called “Unexpected Betrayal,” where the filmmakers and cast discuss William O’Neil’s complexities and (SPOILER ALERT) his eventual betrayal of Hampton.
The “Judas and the Black Messiah” Blu-ray will be available for the suggested retail price (SRP) of $35.99 and the DVD will be available for $28.98 (SRP).
The Little Things (Crime Thriller)
Uncover the disturbing secrets in the search for a killer terrorizing the city when “The Little Things” arrives on Premium Video on Demand (PVOD), Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Tuesday May 4.
The film is directed by John Lee Hancock (“The Blind Side,” “The Founder”) and stars Academy Award winners Denzel Washington (“Training Day,” “Glory”), Rami Malek (“Bohemian Rhapsody”) and Jared Leto (“Dallas Buyers Club”).
Kern County Deputy Sheriff Joe “Deke” Deacon (Washington) is sent to Los Angeles for what should have been a quick evidence-gathering assignment. Instead, he becomes embroiled in the search for a killer who is terrorizing the city. Leading the hunt, L.A. Sheriff Department Sergeant Jim Baxter (Malek), impressed with Deke’s cop instincts, unofficially engages his help. But as they track the killer, Baxter is unaware that the investigation is dredging up echoes of Deke’s past, uncovering disturbing secrets that could threaten more than his case.
Bonus featurettes on the Blu-ray include “Four Shades of Blue” and “A Contrast in Styles.” The DVD includes the latter only. The Blu-ray+ Digital will be available for $35.99 (SRP) and the DVD + Digital will be available for $28.98 (SRP).
“The Little Things” is available now on PVOD as well as in high definition and standard definition from select digital retailers including Amazon, FandangoNOW, iTunes, PlayStation, Vudu, Xbox and others. The film also is available on Movies Anywhere. Using the free Movies Anywhere app and website, consumers can access all their eligible movies by connecting their Movies Anywhere account with their participating digital retailer accounts.
“Painkiller” arrives on DVD, On Demand and Digital Tuesday May 4, from Cinedigm.
After losing his daughter to a drug overdose, a broken father begins a vigilante campaign to bring down the white-collar criminals behind the opioid epidemic in “Painkiller.” The timely and powerful thriller stars acting veterans Michael Paré (“Eddie & the Cruisers,” “Gangster Land”) and Bill Oberst Jr. (“Scream Queens,” “Criminal Minds”) and takes an unapologetic look at a crisis facing countless American families.
Bill Johnson (Oberst Jr.) has suffered the kind of loss that no parent should ever have to; watching his daughter fall victim to the opioid epidemic, which too long went unnoticed. Conversely, Dr. Alan Rhodes (Paré), has been leading a lavish lifestyle, thanks to the profits he’s been making from his prescription business. Seeing that no one is being held accountable, Bill sets out on a campaign targeting those made rich by the suffering of so many. Teaming up with a rogue cop, they set out to dismantle this network of doctors and pharmaceutical executives that continue to devastate families across the country.
Directed by Mark Savage, “Painkiller” is a gritty thriller that takes a sharp look at those behind a crisis plaguing the U.S. Written by Savage and Tom Parnell, the story is drawn from the plight of millions of Americans and is produced with the raw emotions of their suffering. Co-stars include Pacey Liz Walker (“The Rosa Parks Story”) and Alexander Pennecke (“Blacklist”).
The classic ‘90s action thriller “Speed” arrives on 4K UHD for the first time Tuesday, May 4, from Disney Media & Entertainment Distribution.
Hold on tight for a rush of pulse-pounding thrills, breathtaking stunts and unexpected romance in a film you’ll want to see again and again. Keanu Reeves stars as an L.A.P.D. SWAT team specialist who is sent to diffuse a bomb that a revenge-driven extortionist (Dennis Hopper) has planted on a city bus. But until he does, one of the passengers (Sandra Bullock) must keep the bus speeding through the streets of Los Angeles at more than 50 miles per hour—or the bomb will explode. A high-octane chase of suspense, nonstop action and surprise twists, “Speed” is one of the most enjoyable joyrides committed to film.
Special bonus features include an audio commentary by de Bont, a separate commentary by Graham Yost and Mark Gordon; the bus jump and Metrorail crash sequences; “Inside Speed: On location, the stunts, the visual effects and HBO First Look: The Making of Speed. There are also extended scenes and the “Speed” music video by Billy Idol.
The Virtuoso (Crime Thriller)
Lionsgate will release “The Virtuoso” on Blu-ray and DVD Tuesday May 4.
The crime thriller stars two-time Oscar winning actor Anthony Hopkins (“The Silence of the Lambs,” “The Father”), Anson Mount (“Star Trek: Strange New Worlds,” “Crossroads”), Abbie Cornish (“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” “RoboCop”), David Morse (“The Hurt Locker,” “The Green Mile”) and Eddie Marsan (“Ray Donovan,” “Sherlock Holmes” franchise).
“The Virtuoso” is directed by Nick Stagliano (“Good Day For It,” “The Florentine”) from a script by James C. Wolf (“Good Day For It”).
Danger, deception, and murder descend upon a sleepy country town when a professional assassin (Mount) accepts a new assignment from his enigmatic mentor and boss (Hopkins). Given only where and when along with a cryptic clue, the methodical hit man must identify his mysterious mark from among several possible targets, including a local sheriff (Morse). Meanwhile, a chance encounter with an alluring woman (Cornish) at the town’s rustic diner threatens to derail his mission in this noir-style cloak-and-dagger thriller.
“The Virtuoso” also is available now On Demand and on Digital platforms.