Blu-ray Review “High Fidelity”

Director: Stephen Frears
Starring: John Cusack, Iben Hjejle, Todd Louiso, Jack Black, Lisa Bonet
MPAA Rating: R
Distributed by: Touchstone / Disney
Running Time: 113 Minutes
Release Date: August 7, 2012

Film: 4 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3 out of 5 stars

John Cusack has always been one of my favorites. I am not sure what it is but he is just always nails his roles. This film is one of his best roles, easily. When “High Fidelity” was released, it introduced me to some great music, Jack Black and some of the best comedic lines in film. It is very hard to believe that this film is actually 12 years old. It still holds up though and still delivers the laughs. It still ranks in my top 5 of comedies since 2000. Those who previously own this DVD are wondering if this is worth the upgrade to HD. It is definitely worth the jump for sure.  Highly recommended for those who love music, Jack Black and, of course, Cusack.

The film follows Rob Gordon (Cusack), the owner of a fading record store, Championship Vinyl, which does what is says…sells vinyls. He is a walking enclycopedia of music, living and breathing it.   He spends his days battling with two employees Dick and Barry creating their all-time favorite top-five lists throughout music.  When Rob’s long-term girlfriend Laura walks out on him, he examines his previous failed attempts at romance and tries to seek to find what went wrong.

The Blu-ray presentation itself is very well done by Disney! The 1080p transfer comes with an aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and a video codec of AVC/MPEG-4.  Overall it looks very sharp in its HD transfer.  Since music is a very big part of this film, the audio track is very important.  There is a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track included with 48kHz/24-bit, which is basically perfect with the dialogue and the music.

The special features are good overall but there are no new HD extras included on this release.  First up is some great interviews with Writer/Producer John Cusack split into five different sections. There is also a “Conversations with Director Stephen Frears”, also split into five sections. These both are very informative about the film. There are nine “Deleted Scenes”  that are well worth checking out. I have always loved the scene with Beverly D’Angelo, which is hysterical. Lastly there is the theatrical trailer included.

Book Review “CBGB Was My High School”

Author: G K Stritch
Hardcover: 246 pages
Publisher: Full Court Press

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

“CBGB Was My High School” is a coming of age biography written by G K Stritch. The book is being released via Full Court Press and is more than just your normal biography. Not only does Stritch tell her story of growing up and details the trials and tribulations that come with that but she also incorporates the growth of the NY art/music scene during what I feel is one of the City’s most interesting periods.

This book is a fun and quick read that will have the reader not wanting to put this book down. The growth of places like Max’s Kansas City and CBGB’s are seamlessly interspersed with Stritch’s own accounts of her times at these places. Stritch’s words paint a picture that makes you feel like you are a fly on the wall taking it all in.

From abusive relationships to meeting a former first lady author G K Stritch covers it all. “CBGB Was My High School” is an honest look at 70’s/80’s New York told from the perspective of someone who was there. Even if biographies aren’t your thing give this book a chance. I don’t think you will regret it.

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FREE Tickets to Orlando FL Screening for “High School” [ENDED]

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Anchor Bay is releasing HIGH SCHOOL on June 1st and Media Mikes is proud to give you the opportunity to attend an advance screening in the Orlando FL area. The screening details are: Wednesday, May 30th at Regal Winter Park Village 20 – 7:00pm.

If you would like to attend this screening for this Wednesday’s advance screening of “HIGH SCHOOL”, please print the attached ticket and bring it to the theater to gain admittance.  Even if you have a ticket, we suggest you get there about 60 minutes prior to showtime since seating is not guaranteed as stated.

SYNOPSIS: The day after soon-to-be valedictorian Henry Burke (Matt Bush) takes a hit of the chronic for the first time, his school principal (Michael Chiklis) institutes a zero tolerance drug policy and administers a mandatory drug test for all students. Henry has two options: fail and lose his college scholarship, or team up with his stoner friend Breaux (Sean Marquette) to beat the system. They steal a high powered ganja from law student-turned-drug-dealer Psycho Ed (Adrien Brody) and spike the school’s bake sale brownies, getting the whole school—faculty included—completely stoned out of their minds. But with the student body getting higher and higher with every brownie, and a pissed-off Psycho Ed on their tails for stealing his stash, they must find a way to keep their half-baked plan from going up in smoke.

Directed by John Stalberg, Jr., with story by John Stalberg, Jr. and Eric Linthorst, and screenplay by Eric Linthorst and John Stalberg, Jr. & Stephen Susco, the cast of HIGH SCHOOL also includes Colin Hanks (Orange County, AMC’s “Mad Men”), Adhir Kalyan (CBS’ Rules of Engagement) and Yeardley Smith (Fox’s “The Simpsons”).

Official Site: http://www.highschool-themovie.com/

DVD Review “The High Cost of Living”

Directed by: Deborah Chow
Starring: Zach Braff, Isabelle Blais, Patrick Labbé
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 97 minutes
Distributed by: Tribeca Film

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

I do not think I ever saw one episode of “Scrubs”…but nothing against Zach Braff, just never got into it. For some reason this film stuck out to me and I felt that I should see it. It turns out that this film hits very close to home for me with having a pregnant wife currently…you will find out more about that down below. Tribeca Film has really become a reliable and great distributor and have been releasing some great films. This film has a great story and a wonderful cast, who give some really powerful performances.

The story is about a fast-living drug dealer named Henry (Zach Braff) who accidentally hits a pregnant woman, Nathalie (Isabelle Blais) while driving recklessly and flees the scene. Due to guilt Henry, tracks her down, only to find that she lost her child in the hit and run accident. Henry tries to fix things and make things better, even though she doesn’t known the truth about that night. Is Henry able to save Nathalie or is it too late for both of them.

Zach Braff wasn’t good in this film but REALLY good. It was a very powerful role and he nailed it. Isabelle Blais was very intense and delivers the emotional role quite well. The two of them have great chemistry and really make this film, since it is really only about the two of them. The only bonus features on the disc is an interview with Zach Braff, interesting but not outstanding. That is my only complaint with Tribeca Film DVDs is that they do not pack any of their releases with major extras.