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#New on Blu-ray and Digital: ‘Jaws’ 4K, ‘Portrait of a Lady on Fire’, ‘Scorsese Shorts’, ‘The Invisible Man’, ‘Creepshow’

#New on Blu-ray and Digital: ‘Jaws’ 4K, ‘Portrait of a Lady on Fire’, ‘Scorsese Shorts’, ‘The Invisible Man’, ‘Creepshow’

New Blu-ray Releases jaws 4k

Gather round, children, and I shall tell you a tale. A tale of the wonderful world of home media! These are the new Blu-ray releases (and digital releases, too) you should check out this week, and beyond.

Jaws 4K

I don’t need to tell you how good Jaws is, do I? I mean…come on. It’s a classic for a reason. Steven Spielberg invented the summer blockbuster, and proved he was the real-deal, with this 1975 film about a big fish with a big appetite. Employing thrilling filmmaking and great character building, Jaws hooks you from the start and never lets up. And now it’s on 4K, for the first time ever. And it’s never looked better. Local cop Brody (Roy Scheider), wealthy ichthyologist Matt Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss), and salty sea dog Quint (Robert Shaw), three men who couldn’t be more dissimilar, head out to sea to try to kill a great white shark that’s been chowing down on locals on a New England beach. Male bonding, soggy danger, and incredible John Williams music follow.

Own or Rent? 

Own, baby. Own. As I said above, this is the first time Jaws has ever been available on 4K. So even if you own other releases of the film (and lord knows I do), it’s still a must-have. Sure, there are zero new special features here – they’re all ported over from the previous release. But in terms of visual and audio quality, this is the version to own, and I’m pretty sure it’s the only version you’ll ever need at this point.

Special Features Include: 

  • The Making of JAWS
  • The Shark Is Still Working: The Impact & Legacy of JAWS
  • JAWS: The Restoration
  • Deleted Scenes and Outtakes
  • From the Set
  • Theatrical Trailer

Portrait of a Lady on Fire

Céline Sciamma‘s gorgeous, breathtaking Portrait of a Lady on Fire is a stunner from beginning to end. Artist Marianne (Noémie Merlant) is summoned to an isolated island to paint the portrait of Héloïse (Adèle Haenel). The portrait is meant to be a gift to Héloïse’s betrothed, a Milanese nobleman. But Héloïse refuses to sit for a portrait, which means Marianne has to paint her in secret. During the day, she pretends to be a hired companion, studying Héloïse with every chance she gets. Then, when she’s alone, Marianne attempts to paint her subject. But all that studying has an unexpected effect: the two women are passionately drawn to each other. Claire Mathon’s jaw-dropping cinematography captures it all in bright, eye-popping colors, and the passion and chemistry between Merlant and Haenel is astounding.

Own or Rent? 

Own. You could stream Portrait of a Lady on Fire on Hulu right now, but digital streaming will never, ever look as good as Blu-ray. I stand by that statement, damn it. This is one of the best films of the last five years, so why would you not want to own it?

Special Features Include: 

  • New 4K digital master, with 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New conversation between director Céline Sciamma and film critic Dana Stevens
  • New interviews with actors Adèle Haenel and Noémie Merlant
  • Interview with cinematographer Claire Mathon from the 2019 Cannes Film Festival
  • Interview from 2019 with artist Hélène Delmaire on creating the paintings for the film
  • PLUS: An essay by film critic Ela Bittencourt

Scorsese Shorts

Five of Martin Scorsese‘s early short films are collected here by the Criterion Collection. Right from the start, you can see the signs that Scorsese was bound to be one of our best filmmakers – someone with a jarring inventiveness and a brilliant understanding of the moving image. Everything collected here is worth a watch. What’s a Nice Girl Like You Doing in a Place Like This is a funny little story about a would-be writer and his various neuroses. It’s a bit light as far as subject matter goes, but Scorsese keeps it pumping with a mix of still images and hilarious asides. It’s Not Just You, Murray! follows a clueless criminal as he recounts his rise to success, all the while being oblivious to the fact that his best friend is having an affair with his wife. It eventually descends into full-blown surrealism. The Big Shave is Scorsese’s commentary on the Vietnam War, a dialogue-free narrative in which a young man starts shaving in front of the mirror, only to start drawing blood from his face and throat. It’s haunting and darkly funny, made all the more so by the fact that the man cutting his face up never reacts to the bright red blood pouring from his skin. American Boy has Scorsese sitting down with Steven Prince, a man who had an unconventional life, to say the least. A former drug addict and former road manager for Neil Diamond, Prince recounts several events from his life, including an anecdote about slamming a shot of adrenaline into an overdosing woman’s heart – a story Quentin Tarantino would “borrow” for Pulp Fiction. The best of the bunch is Italianamerican, where Scorsese sits down with his parents and urges them to talk about their experiences as Italian immigrants in New York. It’s perhaps the most charming thing you’ll ever watch.

Own or Rent? 

Own, without question. You could probably find all of these shorts on YouTube for free, but to have them all collected here, in one place, and restored in 4K, is too good to pass up. Plus you also get a fantastic conversation between Scorsese and film critic Farran Smith Nehme, wherein the filmmaker talks not just about these shorts but his general background and how he got started. Scorsese is one of those great talkers, and I could listen to him all damn day, so having this new interview with him here is a real treat. Plus: Ari Aster sits down with the Safdie Brothers to talk about Italianamerican in an additional featurette.

Special Features Include: 

  • New 4K digital restorations of all five films, with uncompressed monaural soundtracks on the Blu-ray:

    ITALIANAMERICAN (1974 • 49 minutes • Color • Monaural • 1.33:1 aspect ratio)

    AMERICAN BOY (1978 • 55 minutes • Color • Monaural • 1.33:1 aspect ratio)

    THE BIG SHAVE (1967 • 5 minutes • Color • Monaural • 1.33:1 aspect ratio)

    IT’S NOT JUST YOU, MURRAY! (1964 • 16 minutes • Black & White • Monaural • 1.33:1 aspect ratio)

    WHAT’S A NICE GIRL LIKE YOU DOING IN A PLACE LIKE THIS? (1963 • 10 minutes • Black & White • Monaural • 1.33:1 aspect ratio)
  • New conversation between director Martin Scorsese and film critic Farran Smith Nehme
  • New discussion among filmmakers Ari Aster and Josh and Benny Safdie
  • Public-radio interview from 1970 with Scorsese
  • English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic Bilge Ebiri and storyboards, treatments, and correspondence from Scorsese’s archive

The Invisible Man

Elisabeth Moss, queen of playing women going through hell, knocks it out of the park as a woman being tormented by her abusive boyfriend – a scientist who has found a way to turn himself invisible. The Invisible Man might be the first real #MeToo horror movie – a film directly about gaslighting, abuse, and the torment of women at the hands of terrible men. It’s also tense as hell, building towards unnerving, scary set-pieces in which Moss is fighting for her life. Director Leigh Whannell creates the perfect atmosphere, rooting the film’s fantastical elements firmly in reality, which makes everything even scarier.

Own or Rent? 

Own. Not only is The Invisible Man one of the year’s best films, but the Blu-ray also comes with great special features. The best of the bunch is the commentary track by Leigh Whannell. When it comes to recording commentary tracks, Whannell is one of the best of the best. The filmmaker is hilarious and insightful, spinning funny stories about the making of his film, and filling us in on how he shot almost every scene. I’d dare say his commentary track might be more entertaining than the film itself (even though I love the film as-is). Also: remember all those shots in the trailer that weren’t in the theatrical release? They’re all here, included in the deleted scenes. As Whannell reveals on the commentary, he shot lots and lots of stuff, and realized he didn’t need much of it in the end – the movie worked better with a less-is-more approach.

Special Features Include: 

  • MOSS MANIFESTED – Elisabeth Moss describes the physical and emotional challenges she faced while portraying Cecilia, a woman whose truth is constantly questioned by those around her.
  • DIRECTOR’S JOURNEY WITH LEIGH WHANNELL – Director Leigh Whannell acts as tour guide through principal photography, from day 1 to day 40.
  • THE PLAYERS – Filmmakers and cast provide an in-depth analysis of each character and how they interact with the unseen terror of THE INVISIBLE MAN.
  • TIMELESS TERROR – A behind the scenes look at how writer/director Leigh Whannell re-imagined this iconic character through the lens of modern technology and socially relatable themes.

Creepshow Season 1

Creepshow TV series is such a great idea. Taking the EC Comics-inspired world that Stephen King and George Romero created for their Creepshow movie and repackaging it into a weekly format makes sense, and Creepshow the series certainly lined-up an impressive list of talent in front of and behind the camera (episodes here adapt stories by Stephen King, Joe Hill, Joe R. Lansdale, and more). But…something is a bit off here. I went into Creepshow with nothing short of full-blown excitement, but the end result leaves much to be desired. While the concepts behind the stories are a hoot, the execution is lacking. I understand that this isn’t exactly a big-budget show, but the low-budget nature shows in really glaring ways. Everything here looks, well, cheap. Still, horror fans will find plenty to love, and I can only hope season 2 will work out the kinks.

Own or Rent? 

Going to go with rent with this one. Or maybe just watch it on Shudder if you have that. It’s a fun treat for horror fans, and I look forward to future seasons. But season 1 doesn’t quite hit its mark.

Special Features Include: 

  • Cast and Crew Interviews
  • Behind the Scenes Footage
  • Creepshow Season 1 Easter Eggs Featurette
  • Audio Commentaries with Cast and Crew
  • Episode and Comic Art Photo Galleries
  • Comic Art Booklet and more!

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