Monday, April 9, 2012

Anticipated Blu-ray Discs 3

I have no idea what to write for these entries any more. At some point in the last two years the studios stopped dragging their feet in bringing out catalog titles. It will never be like the heyday of DVD but I think they've been a respectable amount of titles coming down the pipeline.

In the last year Star Wars, Citizen Kane, Tron, Dumbo, Jurassic Park, The Rocketeer, Jackie Brown, Airplane! and The Blues Brothers have all been released on Blu-ray disc. That's a good amount of titles from my previous Most Anticipated lists. So what's left? Jaws is coming later this year. Kill Bill: The Whole Bloody Affair has been hinted at forever but we still haven't seen it.

In terms of Disney animated films, we have Pocahontas, The Aristocats, both Rescuers movies and Cinderella coming this year. Aladdin has been added back into the Diamond Collection and is set to come out next year. Tarzan isn't part of Disney's North American current schedule but it's already available elsewhere in the world. Plus Disney recently announced a swath of new titles including Treasure Planet, Home on the Range, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, Newsies and the big one for me, Dick Tracy.

We just got some huge news concerning the Studio Ghibli films. Granted we're still waiting on official details, but Castle in the Sky and Whisper of the Heart are coming out alongside The Secret World of Arietty. That just leaves My Neighbors the Yamadas as the only film available on Blu-ray in Japan but not in North America, but that won't be the case for long. Tales From Earthsea and Howl's Moving Castle will be out in Japan in June. We might have to wait until From Up on Poppy Hill is released before we see them here, since Disney only seems to release Ghibli titles when they can tie them into a new film. I do hope Japan gets around to releasing My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki's Delivery Service, Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away so that they can eventually make their way over here. And Only Yesterday! That isn't even available on DVD here.

So what's left? There's Castle of Cagliostro and Suspiria. As good as Disney is becoming with catalog titles, there's still no sign of Super Mario Bros. Maybe they'll sub-license it to Mill Creek? Saban is finally releasing Power Rangers on DVD through Shout Factory, but it's up to Fox to release Mighty Morphin Power Rangers The Movie. I'd like to have both the original curt of Rumble in the Bronx and the edited English dubbed version, if that's at all possible. If MGM can release Troll 2 on Blu-ray I hope they can get to Hackers before long.

End of Evangelion has been out of print for years. With ADV's license for the TV series having ended, none of the original Evangelion anime will be readily available, perhaps by design. Gainax may just not want them competing with their new Rebuild of Evangelion films. It could be a long time before we see them again on any format, or maybe Funimation already has them in the works. Who knows?

Perfect Blue is still out of print on DVD in the U.S. It's available on Blu-ray in Japan but supposedly the quality leaves a lot to be desired. If it does find its way here I hope it receives a new transfer first. I'm also hoping for other Satoshi Kon movies on Blu, particularly Millennium Actress whose DVD edition is also out of print.

Last year I said I wouldn't hold my breath expecting Echo Bridge to release Pokemon movies on Blu-ray. Well I was wrong but I'm still glad I didn't hold my breath. Echo Bridge put out Pokemon Heroes and Destiny Deoxys as a double feature disc. Next month they'll be re-releasing those two movies along with Pokemon 4Ever and Jirachi Wish Maker in a four movie set. That's great unless you already bought that first release. Echo Bridge has a bad habit with the double dips. Those four are the only Pokemon movies that Echo Bridge have access to, so that's all we'll get until Viz, Universal or Warner decide to release their Pokemon movies on Blu. Yeah the Pokemon rights are screwy.

Trying to think of new titles I want has gotten really hard. There are a bunch of movies that I would have included except they already received Blu-ray releases in the last year, or at least have one coming out soon. These include Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Gremlins 2, Battle Royale, Godzilla vs Megalon, Destroy All Monsters, City of God and Plan 9 From Outer Space.

What's left to ask for? Well how about Vertigo, The Abyss, Mallrats, Scanners, Night of the Living Dead, Batman: Mask of the Phantasm would be a big one. There are current animated series like Adventure Time and Thundercats that air in HD but are only released on DVD.

I'm really sorry Media Blasters ran into trouble with Toho because I loved their Destroy All Monsters release and I'd like to see more Godzilla movies and Kaiju in general from them. Someone needs to release Godzilla 1985 and Godzilla vs. Biollante.

The classic Universal Monsters are rumored to be coming out later this year and I really hope they do. I'll take as many as Universal is willing to release, though I hope they don't stop with the major ones. I particularly want all the Creature of the Black Lagoon with the first two in 3D.

Can I ask for re-releases? The Blu-ray discs of Akira and Jin-Roh are already out of print. I'd like a version of Mars Attacks with some extras. The Blu is as bare as the DVD was. I want a release of the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles with the extras available in other countries, or at least a version not packaged in a pizza box with the sequels.

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