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Released on May the 3rd


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30th April 2004

Carlton are re-launching their range of Thunderbirds DVDs on July the 19th, to coincide with the release of Jonathan Frakes' dodgy-looking theatrical adaptation.

The company will be running a Buy One, Get One Free promotion, which will feature eight individual discs and two four-disc Digi-stacks. RRP for each individual disc is £15.99. The two four-disc packs are £63.95 - a saving of one whole penny over buying them separately! Don't all rush at once.

There's no indication that the content of the new discs will be different to the existing discs, which do not feature the original mono audio tracks. They will, however, feature "fantastic" new packaging, so fantastic, in fact, that it apparently can't be conveyed by the power of the Internet alone. Hmmm, sounds like a job for... International Rescue.

News about the next Doctor Who DVD has begun to leak out, courtesy of the BBC Online website. As expected, the September release will be the 1989 Sylvester McCoy story Ghost Light (the last story made, although not the last one shown). The disc will feature a commentary track; an optional Dolby Digital 5.1 audio remix; an isolated score; Shooting Ghosts (behind-the-scenes footage); extended and deleted scenes package; featurette about Sophie Aldred's character, Ace and a Q&A session with the story's writer, Marc Platt, recorded at the 1990 Panopticon X convention.

Universal Playback are releasing a three-disc box set of the Michael Elphick / Angela Thorne BBC sitcom Three Up, Two Down on Monday, with an RRP of £24.99. We missed it from the Incoming page, probably because the company involved sent out the press release only four days before it was released...

Universal is releasing a two-disc Special Edition version of Monty Python's Meaning of Life on May the 17th.

The disc will have a choice of DTS and Dolby Digital audio. Bonus features include a commentary track, by Terry Gilliam and Terry Jones; The Meaning of Making the Meaning of Life ("a programme that gives a whole new perspective on the film with contemporary interviews, original EPK materials and clips with all six members of the Python team", 49m); Re-Mastering a Masterpiece (8m); Song and Dance (interviews about the film's musical sequences, with choreographer Arlene Philps and dancer Jane Leeves); Selling the Meaning of Life trailers and TV ad's (11m); a Prologue by Eric Idle (1m); Educational Tips (an especially-produced educational video preparing you for life in the real world, written and performed by Michael Palin and John Cleese, 6m); Un Film de John Cleese Cleese-centric trailer (2m); Snipped Bits deleted scenes (18m); Virtual Reunion (3m); What Fish Think (comments from the tank's point of view, 16m) and a alternate Soundtrack for Lonely People. Terry Gilliam's sublime short film The Crimson Permanent Assurance is also featured. The discs also feature the screenplay, script extracts for two deleted scenes, song sheets and Mr Creosote's The Joy of Fat cooking tips and recipes, on a DVD-Rom section (which also includes crappy InterActual software).

Here are a few menu screens...

29th April 2004

Warner Home Video will release Michael Anderson's 1956 adaptation of Around The World in Eighty Days on July the 5th, presumably to tie in with the new Disney version (which stars Steve Coogan and Jackie Chan).

Warner's two-disc set will include a commentary track, by BBC Radio contributor Brian Sibley; a featurette about the film's producer, Around the World of Mike Todd, featuring contributions from Elizabeth Taylor, Gypsy Rose Lee and Ethel Merman; excerpts from the 1957 Madison Square Gala, celebrating the film's first anniversary, from Playhouse 90: Around the World in 90 Minutes; 1957 Academy Awards ceremony highlights; outtakes; photo gallery; and the original 1956 and 1983 re-issue trailers. The film will be presented in 2.20:1 ratio, with 5.1 audio. RRP will be £19.99.

 (c) 2004 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reservedThe 2003 Oscar-nominated romantic comedy Something's Gotta Give, which stars Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton, will be released on June the 14th. The disc will feature two commentary tracks (one by Writer, Producer and Director Nancy Meyers, Keaton and Producer Bruce A. Block, and a second by Meyers and Nicholson); deleted scenes (there's only one deleted scene on the US disc, so this might be a press release typo); Hampton House Tour (with co-star Amanda Peet); a trailer, and a featurette titled Something Romantic About The Story that isn't on the US disc. RRP is £15.99.

28th April 2004

I've added a new review to the site which should be of particular interest fans of vintage TV comedy, and fans of Sid James in particular. It's a review of Network's two-disc Two in Clover DVD, which contains both seasons of the Thames Television sitcom, which James made between George and the Dragon and Bless This House. Click on the sleeve image, left, or here to go to the review. Two in Clover is released next week, and has an RRP of £24.99. There'll be a chance to win a copy here starting on Monday.

Amazon has reduced its pre-order price for the Star Wars Trilogy DVD box set, to £26.99, making it equally as cheap as Streets Online. The Offers page has been updated to reflect this. Thanks to Jack De Voil for spotting this.

Optimum Home Entertainment has announced the release of  two award-winning titles on DVD during May, starting with John Huston's 1956 adaptation of Melville's Moby Dick, which stars Gregory Peck as Captain Ahab. The only bonus feature is an "extensive" gallery of behind-the-scenes stills. The disc is due on May the 10th, and has an RRP of £14.99.

The company will release Bernardo Bertolucci's Oscar-winning epic The Last Emperor on May the 24th, as a Director's Cut that reinstates more than fifty minutes' worth of material which wasn't in the 1987 theatrical version. (The original version was 156m, the Director's Cut is 209m, or 227m, if you believe the press release). Optimum's two-disc set will present both versions of the film, along with a commentary track by the Director, Producer Jeremy Thomas and composer Ryuichi Sakamoto. Other bonus material on the discs include an "in-depth" documentary about the making of the film; trailers, and a featurette shot by Bertolucci when he was scouting locations for the film, Postcards From China, with optional commentary. RRP will be £19.99.

Neither press release gave any technical details. Here are the sleeve images...


26th April 2004

Buena Vista will release the film version of Starsky and Hutch on DVD on July the 19th. The disc will feature a commentary track (by Director Todd Philips and stars Ben Stiller an Owen Wilson); Driving Safety Public Service Announcement (aka Driving School With Starsky and Hutch); Fashio Fa Shizzle Wit Huggy Bizzle (fashion advice from Huggy Bear); Vince's Bit For The Kids; Last Look Special (documentary spoof); deleted scenes; gag reel and trailer. RRP is £19.99.

Warner Home Video has announced the UK release of the second seasons of ER and Smallville.

The second series of Smallville will be released on July the 19th. The twenty-three episodes will be supplemented by commentary by Alfred Gough, Miles Millar, Jeph Loeb, Tom Welling, Kristin Kreuk, Michael Rosenaum and Greg Beeman (the UK press release isn't specific, but the US set has commentary on two episodes: Red and Rosetta). There will also be deleted scenes, a featurette on guest star Christopher Reeve, and a featurette, Faster Than A Speeding Bullet: The Visual FX of Smallville. One of the features that's on the US set, The Chloe Chronicles, isn't mentioned by the press release, so has presumably been dropped. No technical details were released. RRP for the set is £54.99. A box set combining the first two seasons will also be released on July the 19th, with an RRP of £79.99.

The ER - Complete Season 2 set will be presented on a four-disc set, which also contains commentary on two episodes, ER Specialists - Anatomy of a Scene (on the episode Hell and High Water, 10m); On Call: Life as an ER Doctor (10m); Outpatient Outtakes (7m); a gag reel (5m) and an Easter Egg [Benton / Carter (2m)]. The episodes will be presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen format. RRP is £44.99. Release date is July the 26th.

Well, there are quite a few things happening here this week!

We begin with the site's first film review (well, the first while the film is still in cinemas, anyway!) This takes the form of Lee Medcalf's review of Kill Bill - Volume 2, which can be found by clicking on the image, left, or by clicking here. Lee has some  interesting things to say about the recent trend of making two films back-to-back. We hope you'll participate in the discussion about the film by joining the thread already in progress over at Roobarb's DVD Forum (the link is at the end of the review).

We also have a new DVD review for your reading pleasure today, a look at Optimum Home Entertainment's very cool Region 2 American Splendor DVD. Their disc is quite different from the American version. Although there's not much to encourage people who already have the US disc to switch to the UK disc, the UK version certainly has the edge in terms of bonus materials. There's a fly in the ointment, though, but to find out what it is, you'll have to read the review, which can be found by clicking on the sleeve image, left, or by clicking here. The disc is released on May the 24th.

Don't forget that Universal's Peter Pan DVD is released today. You can read our review of the disc by clicking on the sleeve image, left, or by clicking here.

And now, over to Ceri, for his weekly roundup of news and offers from the online retailers!

Hello! The additions aren’t that extensive this week, but there are some interesting bits and pieces for Incoming, along with some more good bargains, and a new retailer has been added to the Offers page….

Also now showing from Buena Vista is Peter Jackson’s Heavenly Creatures, which stars Kate Winslet and Melanie Lynskey. It has a release date of August the 2nd and an RRP of £15.99. No word on any extras yet, or whether it will be the theatrical version or the extended edition.

Second Sight are preparing a release of Rex Harrison’s 1948 film, Unfaithfully Yours, which was directed by Preston Sturges. The extras for the release are two featurettes: Be Vulgar, By all means! (Terry Jones on Preston Sturges) and Faithfully Yours (wife Sandy Sturges on Preston Sturges), together with a reading by Sandy Sturges from the autobiography Preston Sturges on Preston Sturges. It has an RRP of £19.99 and is showing for the 21st of June.

There’s a 14 disc Sherlock Holmes box set being listed for June the 14th, which presumably is a collection by Orbit of their Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce releases. It’s better to avoid Orbit’s releases and go for MPI’s Region 1 versions instead. The Region 1 versions have had cleaning, restoration and some have special features. Both companies have put one film on each disc, presumably to justify the price, which is a bit cheeky, since most of the films are only about an hour long. If you insist, the Orbit box set has an extortionate RRP of £129.99.

For further information have a look at this thread on Roobarb's DVD Forum, which discusses the releases. is listing five new special editions for August the 30th - Amityville 2, Amityville 3, Conan The Destroyer, Firestarter and Trick Or Treat, which we think are probably from Sanctuary Visual Entertainment. There is no word on the content of the releases, but all have an RRP of £19.99. Of course, once we know anymore information on these releases we’ll let you know!

More extras have been cleared at the BBFC for Warner Home Video’s Marx Brothers Box Set: Groucho Marx on The Hy Gardner Show (5m21s) and Remarks on Marx (22m57s) will accompany A Night At The Opera, and two archive shorts, Cavalcade of San Francisco (8m51s) and The Milky Way (7m54s), both from 1940, are destined for either Go West or The Big Store. The set has a date of August the 23rd and a £59.99 RRP.

Boris Karloff stars as Chinese detective Mr. Wong in three b-movies being released by Instant Vision: Mr. Wong, Detective (1938), Mr. Wong in Chinatown (1939), The Mystery of Mr. Wong (1939). So far these have only been cleared by the BBFC, and haven’t been listed yet by any of the retailers.

And now the TV releases…

The special features for Doctor Who – The Leisure Hive had been cleared by the BBFC (the figures refer to minutes: seconds: frames):

30:17:08 | A NEW BEGINNING
03:55:09 | BLUE PETER
03:34:22 | EASTER EGG NO. 1
05:58:17 | PHOTO GALLERY

The release has a date of July the 5th and an RRP of £19.99.

Granada Media are preparing another Poirot release: ITV’s recently broadcast Death On The Nile. It is listed for June the 21st with an RRP of £12.99.

Also for the 21st of June are two box sets. Anchor Bay are releasing a four-disc set of the 1986 US mini series Shaka Zulu, which starred Edward Fox, Robert Powell, Trevor Howard, Fiona Fullerton, Christopher Lee, Roy Dotrice and Gordon Jackson. It will also feature interviews with Dudu Mkhize (who played Nandi), Henry Cele (who played Shaka) and director William C. Faure, along with a stills gallery and some publicity material. It has an RRP of £29.99.

The Hindi epic, Mahabharat, which was adapted by Indian televsion during the late 1980s is receiving a complete release of all 94 episodes by Arrow Film Distributors. The condensed version, running to 15 hours, was previously released in a 5 disc set. This unabridged version runs to well over 4000 minutes and is presented on 16 discs. The set has an RRP of £99.99.

The third series of Channel 4’s comedy drama, Teachers, from VCI, is now being listed for November the 8th, presumably as a tie-in with the broadcast of series four. No word of any extras yet, but the first two series had a Making of… / interviews featurette on their releases, so something similar may appear on this one. It’s RRP is £29.99.

Playback’s Battle of the Planets complete set has been put back to May the 24th, but extras are now being listed for it: the movie; a featurette; a new 2004 animation promo; an art gallery featuring original drawings; biographies of the voice artists; and the original script for the pilot episode. The set has an RRP of £89.99, but Amazon have mis-priced it, and have the excellent pre-order price of £53.99 (that’s £36.00 off!)

And finally for the TV releases, Marion and Geoff - Complete Series 2, from BBC Worldwide, has had its date revised to June the 14th.

That’s it for the changes to Incoming, now to Offers...

Firstly, I’ve added a new retailer – PriceStorm – they’re a Guernsey based retailer who only ship to the UK and Ireland, but delivery is free. Their prices are similar to's, although at this point, they’re a obviously much smaller operation, with an unproven track record! PriceStorm have a main sale, called DVD Deals, with a variety of things on offer for £4.99 and above. They are also currently running a FilmFour sale, where everything is £5.99, including The Supergrass, from The Comic Strip team. You can discuss the company and the service they offer in this Roobarb's DVD Forum thread.

I’ve added quite a few new bargains from Amazon. After being put up by around £8.00, the Blake’s 7 – Series 1 re-pressing is now back at £29.99. Some of BBC Worldwide’s forthcoming releases which retail for £9.99 – the four Comedy Greats re-issues and the three Cushing Sherlock Holmes – are being offered at £7.49 (£2.50 off). Also from BBC Worldwide, The Day Today (which is out today!) is at £11.99 (£8.00 off). They’ve also got the recent Firefly – Complete Set at £24.49 (£10.50 off), and three of Warner Home Video’s double features of TV-programmes-turned feature-films – Steptoe and Son / Steptoe and Son Again, Sweeney! / Sweeney 2 and Up Pompeii and Up the Chastity Belt – all at £7.97 (£8.02 off). also has these on offer, but at £8.99. As previously mentioned, they also have the mis-price for the Battle of the Planets - Complete Box Set.

Benson’s World has Cadfael - Series 2 and Series 3 at £10.99 (£4.00), which is not as good as the price they were offering Series 1 for, which was a pound cheaper, but still the best around. Upstairs Downstairs – The Black and White Episodes and the two volumes of Thomas and Sarah are also at £10.99 (£4.00 off).

Thanks to The Sweeney (aka Wayne) and Analogueman for spotting that Blockbuster have Cagney and Lacey – Series 1 at £9.99, Minder - Series 1-5 at £14.99 each, and the first four Special Edition versions of the Star Trek films at £5.99.

Don’t forget, if you spot a bargain which isn’t listed in the Offers page, please let us know by posting in The High Street section of Roobarb's DVD Forum, or by contacting me directly, by email. Blockbuster also has the complete box set of Michael Gambon’s Maigret at £18.99 (£11.00 off) and Agatha Christie's Partner’s in Crime at £14.99 (£10.00 off).

Finally, WH Smith has the recent Buffy – Series 7 box set at £49.99 (£30.00 off).

That’s it from me!

Thanks, Ceri!

Previous News entries can viewed be by following this link.


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