Check out our pick of the latest new DVD releases.

September 08

'Eye For an Eye' up for pre-order on DVD

Korean boxoffice smash hit cat-and-mouse thriller Eye for an Eye is up for pre-order on DVD. Proceeding are helmed by Kwak Kyung Taek (Friend, Typhoon) while top stars Cha Seung Won (Murder Take One) and Han Suk Kyu (Shiri) face off in a battle of brawn and wit. Weaving from Busan to the corporate districts of Seoul, Eye for an Eye throws in gripping car chases, daring heists, and unexpected plot twists galore.

Fierce, suave, and foulmouthed detective Baek (Han Suk Kyu) is about to leave the force to start his own business, but his plans are interrupted when two large cases land on his desk. First, an armored truck is robbed,then someone impersonates Baek and steals trafficked gold from the airport right under the nose of the Police. As a final insult, the perpetrator, Ahn (Cha Seung Won), sends a package of cash to Baek the next day. Outraged, Baek pursues his target with the determination of a madman, but Ahn is one step ahead at every turn, deliberately leaving clues behind to taunt the police. Baek soon realizes that Ahn's clues are leading him to an even greater enemy.

Eye for an Eye (Official site)

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'Tokyo Zombie' finally arrives on DVD

Based on the Manga by Hanakuma Yusaka - Sato Sakichi's (writer of Ichi The Killer) wacky action-packed comedy horror Tokyo Zombie, starring Asano Tadanobu (Ichi The Killer, Vital) and Aikawa Sho (Dead or Alive, Gozu), is finally up to order on DVD. The R2 release arrives on Oct 13th, but those in the U.S will have to wait until November 11th.

Tokyo - The near future. Two workers at a fire extinguisher plant, Fujio and Mitsuo, dream of going to Russia to fulfill their lifelong ambition of becoming the World's Strongest Man. They spend each day practicing their jujitsu. They're best friends and closer than brothers. Nothing can tear them apart. Which is lucky, because the city is being invaded by zombies!!! Spewing from a mountain of industrial waste that has been dubbed "Black Fuji", legions of the undead are rising from the Earth and threatening to take over the world. Can our heroes save the human race from imminent extinction?

Tokyo Zombie Trailer

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'Dororo' on DVD!

Blockbuster martial arts fantasy Dororo hits U.S DVD Shelves next week. From the subtle mention on the top of the art work, some might have spotted a mention that the film was adapted from a Manga written by Astro Boy Tezuka Osamu. Dororo is a rollicking period adventure and was such as success not one but two sequels are already in the works. Sumabuki Satoshi and Shibasaki Kou stra as demon hunters Hyakkimaru and Dororo. With action choreography by Ching Siu Tung (Hero) and plenty of CG demons to boot, it's fast-paced and swashbuckling from beginning to end.

 

 

Dororo (Official site)

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'Fist of Legend' on R1 DVD

Regarded by some as the best martial arts movie he ever made, Jet Li’s Fist of Legend has just received the Dragon Dynasty treatment, and has been release in a swanky re-mastered two disc edition. The film, a remake of Fists of Fury which starred martial arts legend Bruce Lee, boasts action direction by Hong Kong action master Yuen Wo-ping - A guaranteed Kung Fu extravaganza!

Set in 1937, when Shanghai was occupied by the Japanese and racial tensions were high. Jet Li is Chen Zhen, who returns to Shanghai to avenge the death of his master, whom he learns was poisoned. His popular freestyle fighting technique and Japanese girlfriend do not endear him to his former friend, now his master's successor at the martial arts school.

Fist of Legend Trailer

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Suicide Song (aka Densen-uta)' on R1 DVD

Based on a suitably gruesome urban legend surrounding the Hungarian song entitled "Gloomy Sunday,"said to have caused multiple suicides - J-Horror ‘Densen-uta’ (the literal translation 'Suicide Song') hits R1 DVD on September 23rd. Directed by Masato Harada, the script is written by author Yasushi Akimoto, who penned the Japanese horror classic "One Missed Call."

High-school girl Kana suddenly commits suicide in a classroom one afternoon. Her friend Anzu, who at the time hears Kana humming a strange song, is on hand to witness the tragic scene. The disturbing event leads to media speculation about bullying at the school, but Anzu cannot shake the feeling that something more might be going on. With the mysterious melody still fresh in her mind, she decides to investigate the mystery with her friends.

Suicide Song Trailer

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'Red Cliff' on DVD and Blu-ray

There have been some pretty dodgy looking Mainland Chinese DVD releases of John Woo's adaptation of the Chinese classic Red Cliff knocking around, so we've held off mentioning them - But now the Hong Kong DVD and Blu-ray have a arrived, so its open season for historical epic ordering, as they are usually good quality.

The first of two films chronicling the legendary battle, Red Cliff stars Tony Leung Chiu Wai, fresh from his Golden Horse Award-winning turn in Lust, Caution. Leung plays the role of strategist Zhou Yu, and stepped in to help old friend John Woo when original lead Chow Yun Fat vacated the leading role. Rounding out the cast are Kaneshiro Takeshi (The Warlords), Chang Chen (The Go Master), Zhang Feng Yi ( Emperor and the Assassin), Hu Jun (Infernal Affairs 2), Japanese actor Nakamura Shidou (Fearless), and in her debut, Taiwanese model Lin Chi Ling.

208 A.D., The Battle of Chang Ban. Liu Bei (You Yong) and his followers narrowly escape the armies of Prime Minister Cao Cao (Zhang Feng Yi), but Cao Cao's lust for power continues to grow. Fearing that Liu Bei and the Kingdom of Shu cannot oppose Cao Cao, strategist Zhuge Liang (Kaneshiro Takeshi) proposes an alliance with the Kingdom of Wu. However, Wu ruler Sun Quan (Chang Chen) is uncertain on challenging Cao Cao. Zhuge Liang instead looks to persuade Sun Quan's chief strategist Zhou Yu (Tony Leung Chiu Wai), and discovers in Zhou a kindred spirit versed in the arts as well as battle. The two men form an instant bond, and decide to battle Cao Cao at the water port of Red Cliff. Their alliance comes not a moment too soon, as Cao Cao approaches with an army that vastly outnumbers the combined Wu and Shu forces. But Zhuge Liang has a plan - one that will hopefully enable the smaller force to emerge victorious.

Red Cliff Official site

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Chinese chiller 'The Deserted Inn' on DVD

Zhang Jing's Chinese horror movie The Deserted Inn is set for arrives on English subtitled DVD this week. Deserted Inn stars Kenny Kwan as a music composer whose career is on the rocks. He retreats to a deserted town looking for inspiration to write his next hit song. After checking into a local inn, he begins to experience nightmares that push him to the brink of insanity - until he unveils the dark secret of the innkeeper.

 

 

 

The Deserted Inn Trailer

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August 08

Korean horror 'Guard Post 506' (aka G.P.506) on R2 DVD!

Korean Zombie horror anyone? Yes please! Su-chang Kong’s (director of ‘R-Point’) new military based horror ‘G.P 506’ is set for R2 DVD through UK distributor Cine Asia. Starring Chun Ho-jin & Cho Hyun-jae, the film was one of very few Korean horror pics to be released last year and by all accounts, is a pretty gory ride. So far there's is no sign of anyone releasing it in the U.S. , so if you want to see it there, it could well be time to get that region free DVD player you've been promising yourself. G.P 506 is released on October 13th.

Synopsis: "A strange multiple murder case was just occurred. A squad of soldiers from guard point 506 has been brutally killed, all except one. Every body was either crushed, or had their heads cut from their neck. The only survivor is in coma and the case is a complete mystery. Military investigator (Chun Ho Jin) is dispatched. When he arrives it soon becomes apparent this is no ordinary investigation, he is confronted by the discovery that a strange virus is turning soldiers into Zombie like killers…!”

The Korea Times review of G.P 506

G.P 506 Full trailer

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'Dante 01' arrives on R2 DVD September 15th

High on the must see list around these parts, Maro Caro's dark sci-fi thriller Dante 01 streets on R2 DVD next month. His first solo project, Caro previously worked with Jean-Pierre Jeunet on the surreal and often visually breathtaking French films: City of Lost Children & Delicatessen. Made in just 40 days under a very tight budget of € 8 million, Dante 01 was scripted in collaboration with the novelist Pierre Bordage. The film also stars Linh Dan Pham, Dominique Pinon and François Levantal.

Synopsis: “Dante 01 is a space prison adrift in the suffocating upper atmosphere of the hostile planet Dante. Inside, six of the Galaxies most dangerous criminals are used as guinea pigs in obscure experiments. A resistance is organized against César (Dominique Pinon), a psychopath warden. But its authority it's called into question by the arrival of Saint-Georges (Lambert Wilson ‘Matrix Reloaded’) a mysterious prisoner possessed by a secret force which he will learn how to control, using it to face the hostility of his fellow prisoners and to release them from the toxic death trap of Dante 01.”

Dante 01 (Official site)

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4Digital Asia release 'Yo-Yo Girl Cop' and 'Black Kiss' on R2 DVD

New UK distribution house 4DIGITAL have shown they have their eye firmly on the ball when it comes to making astute purchases for their 4DIGITAL ASIA label. They got off to a great start with the acquisition and release of Shusuke Kaneko’s Death Note series and now it looks like they are on a roll with the announcement of 2 more great titles: Yo Yo Girl Cop and Black Kiss. Both hit the shelves September 22nd.

Directed by Kenta Fukasaku (Battle Royale 2; X-Cross) and starring J-Pop starlet Aya Matsuura (The Blue Light), YO-YO GIRL COP is the latest movie incarnation of Shinji Wada's phenomenally popular 1970s manga series ‘Sukeban Deka' (Delinquent Girl Detective), which since its first publication has been adapted into three live-action TV series, an original video animation and two previous live-action movies. Special Features include: Making of Yo Yo Girl Cop; Original Japanese trailer; Press Conference; Premiere Press Conference; stars Aya Matsuura & Yuki Saito talk; Cast and Crew interviews.

Concerned by the contents of Enola Gay, an underground website aimed at teenagers, the Japanese authorities enrol a young undercover agent at the city's notorious Seisen Academy hoping she can track down some of the students who have been accessing the site for instructions on bomb-making and suicide techniques. Before the agent can complete her mission, she is killed in an explosion at the same time that a timer on the Enola Gay site begins counting down the seconds to an unknown but potentially catastrophic event due to occur one week later.

YoYo Girl Cop Trailer

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BLACK KISS, a chillingly atmospheric psycho-thriller written and directed by Tezka Macoto (Hakuchi: The Innocent) and starring Reika Hashimoto (Survive Style 5+), Masanobu Ando (Battle Royale) and Ken Mitsuishi (Audition).

Asuka (Reika Hashimoto) is an aspiring fashion model, recently arrived in Tokyo to pursue her career. Low on cash and job offers, and with nowhere to live, she shacks up in the heart of the city's red light district with newfound acquaintance and former model, Kasumi (Kaori Kawamura), a sullen young woman with a tragic past.

Alone in the apartment one night, Asuka witnesses a bizarre and gruesome murder taking place in the building across the street. The police arrive to find the victim flayed and disemboweled, with voodoo symbols carved into what is left of his skin and his remains displayed as a hideous work of art. Baffled by the seemingly ritualistic killing, the lack of evidence and the fact that the room was locked from the inside, the investigators begin to pursue the voodoo angle. But similar and strangely ‘coincidental' murders soon begin to stack up; all marked by what becomes known as the killer's calling card - a black lip print left on each corpse. And the similarities don't end there. Each victim is found to have had a previous connection to Kasumi and now it looks like Asuka could be next in line to receive the deadly caress of the Black Kiss.

Black Kiss Trailer

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'Hansel and Gretel' finally arrives on DVD

It's been a long time coming, but Yim Pil-sung's atmospheric and at times surreal fantasy horror Hansel & Gretel is finally available on DVD. Sung's latest work is a sinister tale which draws inspiration from those classic Brothers Grimm stories, but with a dark twist. Here it is adults rather than children who become lost in the woods. Hansel & Gretel is expected to be released, September 3rd.

Eun-su (Chun Jeong-myoung), while arguing over the phone with his girlfriend, has a car accident in the middle of nowhere. Deep in the heart of a forest, he finds sanctuary in a beautiful house, where a charming family of five greets him.Here, rooms are filled with a myriad of colorful toys, and sumptuous three-tier cakes and other cavity-causing sweets are served for breakfast. But that's one thing to imagine and another to actually live through, especially when you cant get away from it. Ever.

Hansel & Gretel Trailer

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Noboru Iguchi’s ‘Sukeban Boy’ and Pang Brothers’ ‘Re-Cycle’ coming to R1 DVD

Posted by: Daniel

Following the apparent success of his explosive revenge film ‘Machine Girl’ in the US, one of Noboru Iguchi’s earlier, quirkier films, ‘Sukeban Boy’ is to be released on R1 DVD in October. Sukeban Boy recounts the story of a boy named Sukeban, who, due to continuous fights, and subsequent expulsions, is enrolled by his father into an all-girls school; conveniently so, in that Sukeban bears a strikingly feminine appearance. His school life grows stranger and stranger as the movie progresses, in the same manner that Iguchi’s own Machine Girl does, much to the delight of fans.

Don’t make any assumptions though; Sukeban Boy is very different to Machine Girl. Noboru Iguchi’s ‘unique’ directing style often results in a pornographic/fetishist setting, and Sukeban Boy is no exception. Those planning to indulge in Sukeban Boy can expect nipple clamps, transvestites, and an influx of scantily clad schoolgirl gang members, so heed warning that this film will most probably not be for everyone, and will most probably not cater to all fans of Iguchi’s Machine Girl. Regardless, Sukeban Boy has found its way to my ‘must-see’ list; let’s just hope that my girlfriend agrees to watch it with me (good luck – right guys? :P). Sukeban Boy arrives on R1 DVD on Oct 28.

Sukeban Boy Trailer

 

The Pang Brothers’ fantasy-horror masterpiece (and personal recommendation of mine) ‘Re-Cycle’ is finally making its way to the shores of us English speakers, coming to R1 DVD in late September. Re-Cycle is the story of Ting-yin, an author who is struggling to complete her new, announced (against her own will), supernatural-themed novel. Knuckling down, and facing her writer’s block, Ting-yin begins working on the novel, only to find that the ideas she puts text to begin happening in the real world (not in the same comical manner as Will Ferrell’s ‘Stranger Than Fiction’, but with a much more sinister and terrifying approach).

Petrified, she takes leave of her apartment, only to find herself in a post-disaster Earth – Crumbling buildings abound, and devoid of all humans, bar a horde of zombie-like figures. Soon it is revealed to Ting-yin that this world is not her own, but a world of the abandoned; a world in which discarded things reside, and are thereafter taken by an occurrence known only as ‘the Re-Cycle’. Ting-yin befriends a young girl along the way, who says that she will accompany her to ‘the Transit’, a place unseen by the girl, but of which she is sure exists. The Transit (Ting-yin’s only passage home) is difficult to reach however, and many-a-problem is encountered during the girls’ pilgrimage. The mind-blowing unexpected ending and spectacular visuals of this movie really set its bar high in terms of brilliance, being one of my most favoured films of recent times, and one that any fan of Asian cinema should endeavour to see. Re-Cycle is to be released on R1 DVD on September 23.

Re-Cycle trailer

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July 08

Soi Cheang's 'Shamo' available on DVD

Whoa how did we nearly miss this!? Director Soi Cheang's Shamo, the follow up pic to his equally violent action movie 'Dog Bite Dog,' is released on DVD tomorrow. The film produced by Hong Kong's Same Way Productions is a hard core fight pic about a about a psychotic antihero called Ryo. Shamo stars Shawn Yue ("Infernal Affairs") in the lead, along with Masato ("Lethal Ninja"), Dylan Kuo ("Black Night") and Francis Ng ("Exiled").

Convicted of murdering his own parents in a fit of insanity, Ryo Ishibashi is thrown in a harrowing juvenile detention center, where he's physically and sexually assaulted, pushing him to the brink of suicide. But Ryo is rescued from the abyss by Kenji Kurokawa (Francis Ng), an eccentric karate teacher who instructs Ryo how to become a human weapon. The training gives Ryo the will to live, and once he leaves prison, he decides to test his skills in the extreme fighting tourney Lethal Fight, challenging reigning champ Naoto Sugawara (Masato) to a winner-take-all match. But Ryo is still searching for his missing younger sister, Natsumi (Pei Pei, Dog Bite Dog), who descended into prostitution after Ryo was jailed. During his search, Ryo chances upon another prostitute, Megumi (Annie Liu), who comforts him and gives him the strength to move forward, leave his past behind, and battle for his ultimate goal: defeating Sugawara in the "Lethal Fight" championship.

Shamo (Official site)

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‘Tai Chi Master’ R1 DVD

Jet Li teams up with Michelle Yeoh in ‘Tai Chi Master’ (aka Twin Warriors), a period martial-arts tale of revenge and retribution filmed in 1993. Directed by Yuen Woo Ping (who also directed Jackie Chan's popular Drunken Master and Yeoh's Wing Chun), it matches over-the-top melodrama with fantastical fight scenes. Li and Chin Sui Hou play Junbao and Tienbao, two misfit monks who get into trouble at their Shaolin temple since childhood.

 

 

 

 

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‘Carved 2’ (aka Kuchisake-Onna 2) R2 DVD

Posted by: Daniel

Earlier this year, 24fps readers were given a taste of Carved 2 (Kuchisake-Onna 2) with an official site/trailer. Carved 2, although directed by Kôtarô Terauchi, and not Kôji Shiraishi (who directed the film's predecessor), is a follow-up featuring the infamous, slit-mouthed woman of Japanese urban legend - setting its focus more on the events that led to her becoming a killer, rather than the terrifying aftermath and effect on society.

Good news – It’s just been released on Japanese R2 DVD. Bad news - Sadly, the release comes without English subtitles. So unless you speak Japanese, this is for die hard ‘Slit Mouthed Woman’ fans.

 

 

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‘Vengeance’ R1 DVD

Directed by Preaw Sirisuwan, Mono Films, Thai (B-movie) horror adventure pic ‘Vengeance,’ comes to R1 DVD. A team of police officers must track down a group of ruthless criminals who have entered a mysterious forest that is said to be cursed.

Once inside the forest the police and the criminals discover a bizarre world where mythical creatures exist and the curse of ancient treasure hidden within the forest is in fact real. As they make their way through the forest they must fight against the creatures within and each other - in hopes of escaping alive.

 

 

Vengeance (Official site)

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‘Dark City’ (Director's Cut) R1 DVD

The critically-acclaimed triumph from visionary director Alex Proyas (I Robot, The Crow) is back with a brand new directors cut featuring enhanced picture and sound never-before-seen footage and three commentary tracks that take you deeper than ever before into the world of one of sci-fi’s most exciting and revered tales. When John Murdoch (Rufus Sewell) wakes with no memory at the scene of a grisly murder he soon finds himself hunted by the police a woman claiming to be his wife and a mysterious group of pale men who seem to control everything and everyone in the city. Starring Rufus Sewell, Jennifer Connelly, William Hurt and Kiefer Sutherland.

 

 

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'Doomsday' (Unrated Widescreen Edition) R1 DVD

Loud, violent, and proudly derivative, the post-apocalyptic action-thriller Doomsday is the latest from UK cult director Neil Marshall, who impressed horror fans with his previous efforts, Dog Soldiers and The Descent. Both pictures established Marshall as a director with a knack for reinventing well-worn genre pictures, but here, he seems more interested in stitching together favorite scenes and elements from established horror and science-fiction films. Escape from New York is the main source for Doomsday, though there are plenty of nods to The Road Warrior and its multitude of Italian-made carbon copies, as well as the zombie/plague subgenre; the lovely but impassive Rhona Mitra is the Snake Plissken-esque loner sent by police (represented by Bob Hoskins) to infiltrate Scotland, which has descended into anarchy following a viral outbreak.

 

 

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'Psycho Beach Party' R2 DVD

Psycho Beach Party comes from screenwriter and dragtress extraordinaire Charles Busch. It's an audaciously funny whodunit and psycho thriller parody set on the sun-drenched beaches of ‘60s Malibu. When pouty-lipped misfit Chicklet, (Lauren Ambrose, Six Feet Under) finally makes her way into the cool crowd, she begins having insanely bizarre blackouts. At precisely the same time, all of her beefcake surfer pals mysteriously drop like flies and she quickly becomes the chief suspect. A madcap romp with shirtless hunks, a wannabe surf babe with a split personality, oh, and a few severed body parts.

 

 

 

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'The Tiger Blade' Blu-ray

When the police are challenged with a highly volatile and dangerous case a young maverick cop with mystical powers is put on the job. Yosthana teams up with the seductive Duang Dao to hunt down and capture the deadly Five Bullets Bandit and the brutal female warrior G.I. Jenjira.The fearsome gang is led by the lethal Mahesak who like Yosthana is skilled in the art of sorcery and magic. Mahesak can only be defeated with The Tiger Blade an ancient sword that holds the powers of nature and the forces of good. Yosthana must find The Tiger Blade and bring Mahesak to justice. The stage is set for a gruesome battle between the two archenemies.

 

 

The Tiger Blade (Official site)

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'Madame O' R1 DVD

Madame O: Director - Seiichi Fukuda
R1 DVD: Review by - Pete Higgins

“Madame O” is not your average female-revenge flick. For one thing, its sedate pace (it was made in 1967) takes some getting used to. For another, its languid, poised, quietly beautiful heroine is hardly the stuff of modern J-horror. And, for yet another, the unrelenting gaze with which it observes some pretty disturbing goings-on is brutally effective.

The plot, for what it’s worth, is your average female revenge-flick: Madame O, a successful gynaecologist, was gang-raped on the beach that summer, and now she picks up guys in bars, sleeps with them, and kills them. Pretty standard stuff, right? Not this time. Prepare yourself for a film that packs a real emotional punch.

The star, Michiko Sakyô, is in practically every scene, and she brings a truly mesmerising quality to her role, going about her business with a steely determination that’s never less than compelling. Whether she’s injecting her sleeping lover with some unnamed substance, or just driving home from work, you can’t take your eyes off her for a second. As the film progresses and things get really far out, you might want to stop looking, but resistance, as they say, is futile.

Switching, seemingly at random, between colour and black-and-white, “Madame O” is quite unlike any other film I’ve ever seen. Perhaps it’s just that I haven’t seen many Japanese films from the sixties. Anyway, even in its dubbed version, this is a film worth tracking down, because no amount of dubbing can detract from the superb cinematography and the film’s stately but hypnotic progress. And then there’s the surprising subtlety of the sex scenes, which, like those in “Lust, Caution” actually advance the plot and teach you something about the people involved, rather than just spicing things up. Yes, whatever it takes to make a cult classic, “Madame O” has got it.

Madame O Trailer

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'Grindhouse Trailer Classics Vol. 2' up for pre-order on DVD

Hot on the heels of the successful - and critically acclaimed - Grindhouse Trailer Classics vol 1, Nucleus Films have been busy polluting their minds watching a mind-twisting plethora of movie trailer trash in preparation for this much requested follow up volume of Grindhouse trailers, which promises to be just as audacious as the first volume – and then some!

Be prepared to venture on a second two-hour trip into the demented minds of the folks at Nucleus Films, and have your brain knocked out of gear by this stunning assault on the senses of demented and deranged movie previews, the likes of which you never dreamed of!

Grindhouse Trailer Classics vol 2 brings you a hand-picked collection of mind-blowing trailers for the 1960s and 1970s cult movies that have inspired and informed the works of a whole generation of contemporary directors including the likes of Quentin Tarantino (Death Proof), Robert Rodriguez (Planet Terror), Eli Roth (Hostel) and Rob Zombie (The Devil’s Rejects) – films such as THE BLACK GESTAPO, TEN VIOLENT WOMEN, THE BODYGUARD, THE DEPRAVED, BLOODY PIT OF HORROR, THE PINK ANGELS, FOXY BROWN and many more.

To see a couple of clips (not safe for work) from Grindhouse Trailer Classics vol.1, go here and here.

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'A Tale of Legendary Libido' on DVD

Korea's answer to Austin Powers? A Tale of Legendary Libido stars comedy sensation Bong Tae Gyu (The Two Faces of My Girlfriend) as a timid loner suddenly bestowed with an incredible mojo that allows him to have super strength erection. In this latest raunchy sex comedy loosely based on the ancient Korean folklore song Byeon Kang Swe Tale about a macho sex icon named Byeon Kang Swe, director Shin Han Sol (The Art of Fighting) offers a modern day interpretation of machismo and male sexuality that clearly sets his film apart from previous adaptations like Garujigi (1988).

In a small mountainous village during the Joseon era, there lived a young timid rice cake seller named Kang Swe (Bong Tae Gyu), who suffered from impotency due to a freak accident some years ago. The target of the town's mockery, he hides himself in the mountains, but his stay is cut short after running into a monk who passes on the ancient secret of never-ending erection. Now in full gear, Kang Swe returns to the village and finds out that all healthy men have been sent out to war. With sex-hungry, lusty women fighting to get a piece of the action, Kang Swe certainly has some work cut out for himself.

Tale of Legendary Libido Trailer

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Korean horror 'Wide Awake' on R1 DVD

Director Lee Kyu Man horror thriller 'Wdie Awake (aka The Return) is up for pre-order on R1 DVD. A hair-raising, whodunnit mystery incorporates a medical enigma for extra suspense. The pic stars a great ensemble cast including Kim Myung Min (Into The Mirror), Kim Tae Woo (Epitaph), Jung Yoo Suk (You Are My Sunshine), and Kim Yoo Mi (The Doll Master).

Synopsis: Surgeon Ryu Jaeu gains recognition from his colleagues for carrying out Korea’s first ever operation using hypnotic anaesthesia, together with psychiatrist O Chihun. Jaeu ignores opposition from his surgical partner, anaesthetist Jang Seokho. But with the return of childhood friend Gang Ukhwan, strange events start to unfold in the lives of Jaeu and his wife. One day, Jaeu’s wife collapses with an inexplicable fever. Jaeu himself
takes charge of the operation, but is unable to save her. Plunged into despair, Jaeu makes an unexpected discovery about his wife’s death and sets out to find out the truth. The truth gradually emerges As Jaeu digs deeper, he realizes there is a shocking secret behind not only his wife’s death, but the whole chain of events surrounding him.

Wide Awake Trailer

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'A Tale of Two Sisters' on Blu-ray Disc

A big 24fps welcome to another new contributor the site Luis Muniz, with news of a Korean horror classic arriving on Blu-ray.

Posted by: Luis Muniz

For those who are in demand to see some excellent picture & sound quality from an instant classic, Janghwa, Hongryeon a.k.a A tale of two sisters goes Blu-ray on July 28th 2008. Although there is no mention of any new material added that could possibly surpass what was applied to the Tartan Asia Extreme DVD, a Blu-ray experience of a beautiful horror film is worth the watch.

Synopsis: Bae Soo-yeon (Geun-yeong Mun) and Bae Soo-mi (Su-jeong Lim) are sent to a mental hospital after the intimate death of their mother. When released, they are welcomed by their wicked stepmother Eun-joo (Jung-ah Yum) only to find themselves wondering in a house full of tension amongst their father and an eerie paranormal that lurks about.

A tale of two sisters trailer

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'The Shadowless Sword' finally gets an R1 and R2 DVD release

Young-Jun Kim's (Bichunmoo) action-packed Korean martial arts fantasy adventure 'The Shadowless Sword, has finally made its way to R1 & R2 DVD. Set during the Balhae Dynasty in the 10th century, the film is full of danger, political intrigue and great FX.

After the fall of the Korean capital in the year A.D. 926, the kingdom is plunging into chaos. The only remaining heir, Prince Jung-Hyun (Lee Seo Jin) is living in exile. Still loyal to the dynasty, the beautiful and deadly warrior So-Ha (Yoon Soy) sets out to find Jung-Hyun and guide him to ascend the throne of Balhae and restore order to the kingdom. But with the Army's greatest assassins and the criminal underworld hunting them, So-Ha and Jung-Hyun are swept into an explosive, non stop battle of swords and bloodshed as they fight to reclaim the fallen throne from the 'Killing Blade' army. In this epic struggle of good and evil, the fate of a nation hangs in balance.

Shadowless Sword Trailer

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June 08

Korean Zombie horror 'Guard Post 506' on English subtitled DVD

Great news, Korean Zombie horror GP506 is up for order on English subtitled DVD. One of the few local frighteners to come out of the country this year the film is Writer/director Kong Su Chang's 2nd feature following his acclaimed horror R-Point, the highest-grossing Korean horror film of 2004. His new military horror revolves around the mysterious mass killing of an entire squad of soldiers stationed at Guard Post 506 inside the demilitarized zone.

The Plot: Sergeant major Noh Seong Gyu (Cheon Ho Jin) gets the most disturbing call of his life. An entire squad of 21 soldiers from Guard Point 506 has been massacred except for one who is in a state of deep coma. 21 military investigators including sergeant Noh are sent to the crime scene where they discover dead bodies mutilated beyond recognition with no signs of outside attack. With the torrential rain blocking all paths to the base, the team find themselves trapped inside the bloodbath. Noh's task is to solve the case in just ten hours and bring back the body of first lieutenant Yoo Jeong Woo (Cho Hyun Jae), the son of the army chief. First believed to be one of the dead, they soon discover that lieutenant Yoo is missing in action, which brings the total number of corpses down to 19. When the search team find their visibly perturbed missing man, fingers point to him as the prime suspect. But Noh is convinced there's more to this case than meets the eye. What he doesn't know yet is that something horrific is heading their way.

Guard Post 506 Trailers

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Voice (‘Whispering Corridors 4') on R1 DVD

The somewhat misrepresentative and over the top cover art to one side - Korean horror ‘Voice’ (aka Ghost Voice’) is to get a R1 DVD release through Genius products. The fourth (and very possibly the silliest) in the series that began with 1998 classic ‘Whispering Corridor,’ is directed by Choi Ik-hwan, who worked as assistant director on the first film.

Synopsis: Young Eon (Kim Ok Bin), a timid high school student dies mysteriously while singing in the school's music room. But even in death, Young Eon's voice continues to be heard by her best friend, Sun Min (Seo Ji Hye). Although startled by this supernatural development, Sun Min adapts rather quickly to the situation and tries to uncover the reasons for her friend's untimely demise. But Sun Min's absolute faith in her dearly departed friend is soon shaken when a plague of mysterious deaths start to occur on campus! Are these murders Young Eun's doing? Or could the culprit be someone far more sinister?

Special Features: Behind The Scenes - Trailers

Voice Trailer

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Franck Vestiel's 'Eden Log' up for pre-order on R2 DVD

Franck Vestiel's dark sci-fi horror ‘Eden Log' is finally to arrive on English subtitled DVD - with an R2 release via Momentum Pictures, in July. The films stars Clovis Cornillac & Vimala Pon. Those in the U.S. and Canada eager to see the movie may be in for quite a wait. Magnet releasing the genre arm of Magnolia Pictures have acquired the North American rights, but as yet no release date has been announced.

Synopsis: Tolbiac (Cornillac) wakes up naked, disorientated and lost in a dark cave deep below ground. He's cold, hurt, and has no idea what brought him there, or what happened to the dead man lying next to him. Surrounded by the ruins of an underground world and with only the faintest light source to guide him, Tolbiac attempts to recover his lost memory as he struggles to reach the surface. His journey takes him through a labyrinthine network of tunnels and abandoned laboratories, where he discovers he is not the only one trapped in this tomb-like underworld. Pursued by ravenous mutants and evil phantoms, he eventually meets a woman who may provide the clue to his identity, while all along the way he is confronted by evidence of a mysterious organisation known as Eden Log.

Eden Log Website

Eden Log English language teaser trail

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'L - Change the World ' on English subtitled DVD

L returns to the big screen in the blockbuster Death Note spin-off L change the WorLd! Matsuyama Kenichi reprises his fan-favorite role as the quirky genius detective with a sweet tooth. Directed by Nakata Hideo of Ring and Dark Water fame, L change the WorLd revolves around the last 23 days of L's life, shedding new light into the inner world of the awkward and endearing prodigy as he embarks on his final adventure.

With only 23 days left to live, L burns the remaining Death Note and proceeds to work day and night solving as many cases and consuming as many sweets as possible. One final case is sent his way in the form of a Thai boy who alone survived a deadly virus outbreak in his village. L gets another guest when 12-year-old girl Maki (Fukuda Mayuko, Little DJ) shows up on the doorstep. Both children are connected to an Ebola-influenza virus developed by Maki's father which has been stolen by terrorists. With the terrorists hunting for Maki and threatening to unleash the virus, L is forced to leave his chair and venture out into the real world, both children in stow. The days tick down as L rushes to develop an antidote and catch the terrorists before time runs out.

L - Change the World trailer

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'The Wig' on DVD

Won Shin-yeon's K-Horror classic 'The Wig' is to finally get a R1 DVD release this month. The movie is chock full of subtle creepy chills and suspense galore, with moments of unexpected and sometimes explosive violence. An absolute Asian horror classic.

Synopsis: A young woman is discharged from hospital after being treated for a cancer is seems unlikely she will survive. Having endured the devastating effects of her treatment, the woman is left without hair and her sister buyers her a wig, as way of clinging on to the little dignity she has left. However, it's not long before her sister begins to suspect that the wig has a sinister power that is rapidly taking control of her ailing sibling.

 

The Wig trailer

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Sumptuous eye candy alert - 'The Restless' arrives on R1 DVD

Well we werent expecting this. Korean director CHO Dong-oh's visual feast of a martial arts fantasy blockbuster 'The Restless,' is being released on R1 DVD. Inspired by the Chinese ghost tale about ‘a warrior that wandered into a haunted village,’ CHO a self-proclaimed ‘fantasy, Sci-Fi, Horror film buff,’ also wrote the script. The pic starring Heo Jun-ho, Jung Woo-sung & Kim Tae-hee features stunning set pieces, cinematography and effects. It's like dipping your eyes in (well sort of) Honey. 'The Restless' goes on sale June 17th.

Synopsis: It is between the 9th ~ 10th century, when turmoil racks the once great United Shilla Empire, now at the brink of its demise. Lee Kwak, born with the powers to see spirits, joins the royal demon hunting squad, ‘Chuh- yongdae’ after losing his fiancée, Yeon-hwa to evil demons. Lee Kwak excels as the most talented warrior of Chuhyongdae and the royal squad seems to gain momentum as powerful fighters against the forces of darkness. This only aggravates opposition from the aristocrats who find the supernatural abilities of the royal squad intimidating not to mention threatening. As such antagonism reaches its boiling point, the Chuhyongdae decide to carry out a coup, but when their plot fails, it is not only their reputation but also their heads they end up losing. Robbed of his love and now his comrades, sole survivor, LEE Kwak has no choice but to wander the world as a lonely demon hunter.

The Restless trailer

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'The Forbidden Kingdom' on DVD

Want to see Jackie Chan fight Jet Li? The Hong Kong edition of The Forbidden Kingdom the martial arts adventure starring these two action legends has just been announced for June 13th - meaning you could now pick up a copy at least a month earlier than the U.S. release! Nice.

 

 

 

 

 

The Forbidden Kingdom (Official site)

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‘The Machine Girl’ arrives in a hail of bullets on R1 DVD

Posted by: Daniel
While this post may seem outdated, the splat-happy, revenge film ‘The Machine Girl’ has not yet appeared on the shores of 24fps.

From director Noboru Iguchi (whose directing career consists mainly of porn flicks), the Machine Girl is the story of Ami, an independent schoolgirl who, after her younger brother is murdered before her eyes, seeks revenge on the Yakuza gang involved. Following the loss of her arm during the quarrel, Ami has an 8-barrel machine gun fitted to the now healed remains, vowing to annihilate all responsible. And thus begins the tale of The Machine Girl.

Just from the trailer, you can tell that this movie is in the same league as Tokyo Gore Police, with such highlights as a man being forced to eat his own fingers, the infamous "Drill-Bra", and what looks like a someone having their skin blown off (for those playing at home, see 1:16 in the trailer). Currently, there isn't a great deal of information available on The Machine Girl opening in many places theatrically, but it has already been screened at several film festivals around the world. The Machine Girl hits the shelves in the U.S today on R1 DVD - Two whole months before its theatrical debut in Japan.

Machine Girl trailer

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May 08

Hong Kong action fest ‘Invisible Target’ on R1 DVD

Happy days. Director Benny Chan’s fantastic Cop action pic ‘Invisible Target,’ is finally getting an R1 DVD release through the Dragon Dynasty label. The movie stars Nicholas Tse, Jaycee Chan, Shawn Yue, Andy On & Wu Jing.

Synopsis: “Loose cannon cop Chan Chun is perpetually on the edge, having lost his fiancée when she was killed during an armored car heist. Six months later, Chan finally gets a lead on the perps, a gang of vicious Mainland thieves. The thieves are looking for the mysterious person (or the "invisible target") who masterminded the original heist, and then took the money and betrayed their gang - and they're willing to take down as many cops as they need to gain their revenge.

Chan wants them caught, but he's not the only one out for justice; the tough and smartly-dressed Inspector Fong Yik Wei (Shawn Yue) also wants a piece of the action, and rookie cop Wai King Ho (Jaycee Chan) suspects that the thieves may have something to do with his brother, a missing undercover cop. Individually, the three cops can't stop these guys, but through teamwork, righteous determination, and plenty of head-busting, flying-fists action, they just might stand a chance.”

Invisible Target trailer

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Korean big budget actioner 'Typhoon' arrives on R1 DVD

A full year after its theatrical release in the U.S, Kwak Kyung-taek's 'Taepung’ aka 'Typhoon' is finally available to order on R1 DVD. Starring Jang Dong-kun, Jung-Jae Lee, Mi-yeon Lee, the film in its time was one of the most expensive made in Korea.

Synopsis:” A vessel is attacked by pirates 220 km northeast of Ji Long Port, Taiwan. The National Intelligence Service dispatches a secret agent after obtaining information that the vessel was carrying nuclear missile guidance kits stolen by a man named Sin. Sin has lived his entire life with one goal -- to destroy the Korean peninsula. With the missile guidance kits in his possession, he attempts to execute his plan. Twenty years ago, his family tried to defect to South Korea, only to be sent back to the North as the South Korean government turned its back on his family.

In the process of being handed over to the North Korean military, Sin witnesses the execution of his family followed by the separation from his only sister, Choi Myung-ju. As a result, Sin fosters deep-rooted hatred and fury. Meanwhile Naval Lieutenant Kang Se-jong is sent on a secret mission to find Sin, finally catching up with him in Russia and learns of the family's troubled history. Kang Se-jong meets Sin's elder sister Choi Myung-ju, now a prostitute in Russia and learns of the family's troubled history. During his pursuit, Kang Se-jong begins to feel compassion for Sin, but this does not hinder upon his mission to apprehend him”

The movie did pretty good business on its theatrical release in the U.S. and it will be interesting to see how it fairs on DVD. 'Typhoon' hits the shelves next week.

Typhoon Trailer

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Noriko's Dinner Table on R1 DVD: Review

Another welcome is due to new contributor Daniel, who joins us from the land of Oz - with his review of Sion Sono's 'Noriko's Dinner Table,' on R1 DVD.

Noriko's Dinner Table, the sequel to cult classic Suicide Circle, is to be officially released on DVD in America, two whole years after it's Japanese theatrical release. If you like movies that make you think, then this one is for you.

Noriko's Dinner Table is the story of a 17 year old girl, Noriko, who runs away from home seeking a new life with her recently made internet friends at haikyo.com, a forum dedicated to the connection of people, and the discussion of life's tribulations. Feeling neglected by her own family, she seeks refuge with her online peers, and soon ventures to Tokyo, determined to track down the forum's owner, a user by the name of Ueno54. After an arranged meeting with Ueno54, or Kumiko, Noriko realises that Kumikos family is just what she had been looking for; the family she never had. But as in the original, Suicide Circle, not everything is as it seems (yay, my first clichéd line ), and as Noriko soon discovers, neither is Kumiko's family.

If you're after a gore-flick like the original, then I suggest that you stop reading now. Noriko's Dinner Table is much more drama than horror, a strange spin for director Sion Sono to take, but one that ultimately works well and leaves the viewer thinking long after the movie has finished. It's one of those movies that you'll feel like watching again, just to confirm that your understanding of what just happened is correct; for a movie, there is a lot to take in, and a lot for the viewer to interpret.

Fans of the original may be disappointed with Noriko's Dinner Table, but as a man of many genres, I found it engaging and almost controversially questioning as to what is acceptable in life and what is not. Noriko's Dinner Table will be released on DVD in the U.S May 27th.

Noriko's Dinner Table (Official site)

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Cub Chien's omnibus horror 'Scare 2 Die' on English subbed DVD

Cub Chien's omnibus horror movie 'Scare 2 Die' is out on English subtitled DVD this week. Chien began his film career as an assistant director under the wing of the Kings of Hong Kong horror, the Pang brothers and Scare is his first feature in the big chair. Danny Pang also helped on the movie by (very handy for your first horror project as director) producing and the pic stars Sam Lee, Elanne Kwong, Tommy Yuen.

Down-on-his-luck gambler Kan Au (Sam Lee) owes a big sum of money, and needs to go on a winning streak soon or the loan sharks will take the interest from his hide. Luckily, Kan finds a blessed coin that allows him to draws the unbeatable "13 Unique Wonders" hand of mahjong on 13 consecutive nights, which should be enough for him to pay his debts. The problem: every time he uses the coin to win, somebody dies a gruesome, gory death. Meanwhile, fetching Luk Wing (Elanne Kwong) wakes up one morning to discover her family being eaten! Everyone around her has become a zombie, and Wing has to pick up an axe and fight back, or her heart will be come lunch for the living dead. Finally, slacker Chan (Tommy Yuen) signs up for "Scare 2 Die" a reality game show with a prize purse of $130,000. He's supposed to survive a haunted house, but for some reason, the game show's manufactured scares are following him everywhere - even to his apartment! Is "Scare 2 Die" trying to surprise Chan, or are real ghosts trying to take him out of the game early?

Scare 2 Die trailer

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‘Girls Rebel Force Of Competitive Swimmers’ on English subtitled DVD

The title alone makes this worthy of a mention. Kôji Kawano's ‘The Girls Rebel Force of Competitive Swimmers’ (aka Undead Pool) is up for release on English subtitled DVD. This total orgy of J-horror fun stars AV idol Handa Sasa as a high school swimmer preparing for an upcoming competition.

She convinces her friends to join the team as well, but their trophy dreams are rudely interrupted by a virus that is quickly spreading through the school and a causing a series of mysterious events. Thrown into grave danger as the sinister truth is slowly revealed, the girls of the swim team decide to fight back with everything they've got......And Chainsaws.

 

 

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'Three Kingdoms: Resurrection Of The Dragon' up for pre-order on English subtitled DVD

This definitely seems the week for news on big Chinese period epics arriving on DVD. Next to hit the shelves in June is Daniel Lee’s (Dragon Squad) ‘Three Kingdoms: Resurrection of the Dragon.’ Sporting a huge all star cast including Andy Lau (The warlords), Maggie Q (Mission: Impossible III) and Hong Kong veteran Sammo Hung, the film is based on the sprawling 14th-century novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms.

Synopsis: His country torn asunder by civil war, Zhao (Andy Lau), a commoner, heeds the call of duty. From the humblest of roots, he rises through the ranks on wings of courage to command an army charged with liberating the land from an evil warlord. Inspired by action, honour and a dream of unifying his divided nation, Zhao's heroism becomes a legend. But as the years pass and the throne changes hands, the war still rages on. When the newly enthroned king decides peace can only be achieved by defeating all the warlords once and for all, Zhao embarks on his last & greatest campaign - a road to adventure that will crown his name in glory for all time.

Three Kingdoms (Official site)

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'An Empress and the Warriors' on DVD

Cantonese Pop icon Kelly Chen dons her armour to take the lead in Tony Ching Siu Tung's BIG budget epic 'An Empress and the Warriors.' Tung who previously handled the action for Zhang Yimou's Hero and House of Flying Daggers manages to create a lavish old school action (with a touch of romance) pic, that is a true feast for the eyes. Chen's co-stars include Leon Lai and action superstar Donnie Yen.

Yan Feier (Kelly Chen) is thrust into the role of empress when her father the King is viciously murdered by his own nephew, Wu Ba (Guo Xiao Dong). His treachery unknown to Feier, Wu Ba plots to gain control of the kingdom for himself. Meanwhile, Feier turns to legendary warrior Brother Hu (Donnie Yen) to instruct her in the ways of warfare. But Wu sends assassins after Feier, and she's poisoned by an assassin's dart before being lost in the woods. Her absence throws the kingdom into chaos, and Brother Hu must maintain morale, all the while carrying a hidden love for his missing empress. Meanwhile, Feier is found and nursed back to health by Duan Lanquan (Leon Lai), a doctor who lives in a secluded forest treehouse. Lanquan awakens the woman within the warrior's armor, and given the alternative of a peaceful life without war, Feier must eventually make a difficult choice. Should she choose love, and remain just a woman? Or should she choose her kingdom, and return to being an Empress?

An Empress and the Warriors (Official site)

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April 08

Umberto Lenzi's 'Nightmare City' on R1 DVD

Umberto Lenzi's 1980 take on the zombie sub-genre, (originally titled 'Incubo sulla città contaminata') 'Nightmare City' is getting an R1 DVD release through Blue Underground. Fast zombies were nothing new to Italian horror movie fans in the 80s. They're not only fast, these bad boys use knifes and guns.

Hugo Stiglitz, Mel Ferrer (Eaten Alive) and Francisco Rabal star in this wild splatterfest. Originally released in U.S as the heavily-edited City Of The Walking Dead, this new version of Nightmare City has apparently been transferred from original vault materials and is now presented completely uncut.

When a radioactive spill causes mass contamination, 1000s of infected citizens are transformed into bloodthirsty undead fiends. But these are not your standard stumbling gut-munchers; this is an all-out attack by fast-moving, flesh-ripping, ass-kicking maniacs that can only be stopped by a bullet to the brain. Get ready for an orgy of gunfire, gore and gratuitous aerobics where zombies run, chaos reigns and heads explode.

Nightmare City tailer

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'Jade Warrior' on R2 DVD!

A real treat for R2 martial arts fans. A.J.Annila’s ‘Jade Warrior’ hits R2 DVD next week. Warrior is Finland's first ever martial arts film, blending traditional Chinese swordplay with distict Wuxia overtones - mixed with elements from Finland's sprawling national epic, the Kalevala. Annila blends his genres, using both his own heritage and the conventions of Asian film making to tell the legend of The Sampo. This pic is visually stunning and was an unexpected but well deserved hit across Scandinavian/Asian box-offices. The movie stars Chinese actress Zhang Jingchu (Seven Swords, Rush hour) and Markku Peltola.

In modern day Finland, Kai a blacksmith charged with the task opening an ancient metallic cask found with the mummified remains of a four thousand year old man. The antique case is of craftsmanship well beyond anything that could possibly have been imagined in its era, a case that responds to Kai's touch, opening to release a powerful being within and triggering waves of visions that clearly link Kai to an ancient legend and to an all-powerful evil...

DVD Extras: 4 Behind-the-scenes documentaries; Director’s Commentary; Teaser & Trailers; Music Video; Photo Gallery.

Jade Warrior (Official site)

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Period J-Horror 'Kaidan' on English subtitled DVD

Nakata Hideo, the director of Ring and Dark Water, returns to the genre for the period horror Kaidan. Based on a 19th-century story by Sanyutei Encho, Kaidan evokes the classical horrors of the 1950s and 1960s. Kabuki star Onoe Kikunosuke takes the lead, with a strong line-up of actresses that includes Kuroki Hitomi (Tokyo Tower), Seto Asako (Death Note), Aso Kumiko (Nada Sou Sou), and Inoue Mao (Gegege no Kitaro).

Synopsis: Years ago, a debt collector was slain by a samurai. Before falling to his death, the debt collector placed a curse on the samurai who went on to kill his wife and himself. Years later, the samurai's son Shinkichi (Onoe Kikunosuke) is now a tobacco seller, and as cruel fate would have it, he falls in love with the debt collector's daughter Toyoshiga (Kuroki Hitomi) who is years his senior. Toyoshiga's jealous nature, however, drives a wedge in their relationship, and he accidentally injures her during a quarrel, inflicting a wound similar to that which killed her father. After she dies, Shinkichi runs off with one of her students (Inoue Mao), hoping to start anew, but Shinkichi can't seem to escape Toyoshiga's resentful spirit and all the women who cycle relentlessly in and out of his life.

Kaidan trailer (Youtube)

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Sammo Hung's FATAL MOVE on English friendly DVD

Director Dennis Law (Fatal Contact) assembles a top notch cast of stars, starting with Sammo Hung, Simon Yam, and Wu Jing, reteaming after the wildly popular Sha Po Lang. Joining them are Danny Lee, actress Tien Niu and genre regulars Lam Suet, Maggie Siu, Eddie Cheung, and Pinky Cheung also along for the ride. Fatal Move is an underworld saga rich with themes of brotherhood and betrayal, but director Law makes sure to give the audience what they really want. Fatal Move delivers visceral eye-opening action choreographed by Li Chung Chi, and earns its Category III (the highest rating there is in Hong Kong) rating due to exceptional violence. Those who enjoy their gangster sagas bloody, should be quite happy with what Law has cooked up here.

 

Fatal Move trailer (Youtube)

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Argento's ‘Mother of Tears’ arrives on R2 DVD

A heads for Italian horror fans in R2 land. ‘Mother of Tears,’ Dario Argento’s conclusion to the horror trilogy he began with ‘Suspira’ and ‘Inferno’ two decades before, hits the streets on DVD next week. Argento's daughter Asia (Land of the dead) joins the gory fun in the lead and the pic also stars Udo Kier (Blade), Daria Nicolodi, Adam James and Cristian Solimeno.

An ancient urn is unearthed and opened in Rome, mysterious and evil-looking women from all over the world begin to arrive in the city and violent crime increases dramatically. Leading this horrific army is the Mater Lacrimarum (Mother of Tears) – the third and last of three powerful witches whose demonic ways have terrorized innocents for centuries. All that stands in their way is an art student who seems to possess supernatural abilities of her own.

Mother of Tears trailer

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Kiyoshi Kurosawa's J-Horror 'Retribution (aka Sakebi)' on R1 DVD

My my, we are almost being spoilt this month with swathe of great Asian horror turning up for release on R1 DVD. Latest to show up on the Radar is the horror pic by acclaimed director Kiyoshi Kurosawa (Pulse, Cure), ‘Retribution.’ A film festival favorite, named the "Official Selection" of the New York Asian Film Festival, FantAsia Film Festival and the Fantastic Fest. ‘Retribution’ is a slow burning creepy crime thriller with a hint of the supernatural, that shows Kurosawa back on top form after his so-so and rather messy horror flick ‘Loft,’ released back in 2005.

Detective Yoshioka is investigating the drowning death of a young woman in a red dress. Lying face down in a muddy puddle, her stomach is found to be full of sea water. As the investigation progresses, clues begin to appear that point to him being the murderer - as his fingerprints are found on the body and some of his personal items are found at the murder scene. As more bodies turn up, killed in the same way, even the detective begins to wonder whether he may be the very murderer that he is pursuing.

Retribution (Official Japanese site)

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Korean horror 'Black House' on R1 DVD

Korean director Shin Tae-ra’s (Brainstorm) critically acclaimed film adaptation of the modern gothic Japanese horror novel ‘Black House,’ is due for an R1 DVD release through Genius Products. 'Black House' details the struggle between a smart, upright insurance company rep Juno and a cruel and possibly murderous psychopath.

When insurance investigator Juno (Hwang Jung Min) arrives at the scene of his latest case, a run-down house in the middle of nowhere, he is greeted with the sight of a little boy hanging from the ceiling. The child's father, Park Chung Bae, is jumpy, shifty, and eager for insurance compensation, while frail and grieving mother Shin Yi Hwa bears signs of physical abuse on her body. The police close the case as suicide, but Juno suspects Park of foul play and fears that his wife may well be the next target. Projecting his own troubled past into the case, Juno wants to help Shin escape from danger, but he soon discovers the shocking repercussions of digging too deeply into other people affairs.

Black House trailer

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Korean serial killer thriller 'Our Town' on English subtitled DVD

Director Jung Gil Young's latest film Our Town is about two serial killers living in one town and when it comes to serial killiers, two is a crowd. One is the original killer and the other, a copycat. Starring Oh Man Seok (The Man in the Vineyard), Ryu Deok Hwan (My Son, Like A Virgin), and Lee Seon Gyun (A Cruel Attendancer), Our Town delves deeply into the twisted world of copycat murders. As the mystery unravels, the plot reveals a shocking revelation about the relationship between the two killers.

Homicide detective Jae Shin is called in to investigate five accounts of murder that occurred within the same town. Based on the nature of the killing methods, the detective concludes the case as a serial murder. However, despite his efforts, the killer still remains at large. Concerned over his friend's frustration, Jae Shin's longtime friend Kyung Joo, a mystery novelist lends a helping hand - perhaps his sharp wit can shed some light into the matter. But Kyung Joo is shocked when he discovers that the killer has been fashioning the murders exactly as they appear on his novel. The truth is, Kyung Joo himself committed a murder ten years ago, but has been successful in repressing his killing urge for some time. Now, with his past secret on the verge of discovery, Kyung Joo knows time is running out.

Our Town trailer

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March 08

'The Mist' on R1 DVD

The screen version of Stephen King's 'The Mist' is out on R1 DVD this week. Reasons to be excited: It's King. Frank (no-one does King better) Darabont (The Shawshank, Green Mile) directed the movie and wrote the Screenplay. Best of all, it's a rare beast these days, an R rated horror film.

Following a violent storm, artist David Drayton and a small town community come under vicious attack from creatures prowling in a thick and unnatural mist. Local rumors point to an experiment called the 'The Arrowhead Project' conducted at a nearby top-secret military base, but questions as to the origins of the deadly vapor are secondary to the group's overall chances for survival. Retreating to a local supermarket, Drayton and the survivors must face-off against each other before taking a stand against an enemy they cant even see.

 

The Mist (trailer)

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Japanese horror 'Kabe Otoko' (The Wall Man) on English Subtitled DVD

Based on Morohoshi Daijiro's eponymous manga, The Wall Man (a.k.a. Kabe Otoko) is a moody and mysterious horror from writer/director Hayakawa Wataru. Hayakawa previously directed 7/25 nana-ni-go, which screened at the Cannes Festival International Critics' Week in 1999 and picked up awards at the Vancouver, Torino, and Belfort Film Festivals. Returning with his second film eight years later, he shows no sign of rust, effectively drawing viewers into the sinister and spellbinding secrets that lie beyond the walls. Starring Sakai Masato (Sukiyaki Western) and Ono Mayumi (Premonition).

Acting on an anonymous suggestion, television reporter Kyoko (Sakai Masato) decides to do a feature on the "Wall Man", a mysterious creature, neither human nor demon, that lives in walls and observes the world. Her report is a big success, inspiring lots of audience interest in the myth. What started out as interest, however, turns into obsession as the people around Kyoko become increasingly fixated with the topic and start to exhibit strange behavior. Kyoko's own boyfriend, cameraman Nishina (Ono Mayumi), can't seem take his eyes or lens away from the walls, endlessly snapping pictures. What does he see in the blank walls?

The Wall Man (Official site)

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Stephen Chow's CJ7 up for pre-order on DVD

Four years in the making, CJ7 - Chow's first film since 2004's Kung Fu Hustle is now available to pre-order on English friendly DVD. Chow's last two films, Hustle and 2001 'Shaolin Soccer,’ are ranked one and two on the all-time list of highest-grossing Hong Kong films, and CJ7 is quickly making its way up to the top of the list. CJ7 sees Hong Kong's favorite leading man and director enter a new stage in his career as he tackles sci-fi for the first time. The disc is released in April 3rd.

Synopsis: Construction worker Ti (Chow) lives in a ramshackle shanty and salvages everything from shoes to toys from the trash dump. Despite his state of abject poverty, the earnest, lesson-spouting Ti is determined to send his son Dicky (Xu Jiao) to a posh private elementary school. Dicky, however, is a lot more interested in playing than studying, and he'd like nothing more than a CJ1 robot dog to show up his bullying classmate. Unable to afford a CJ1, Ti brings home "CJ7", a curious rubbery green ball he found at the dump. His son isn't impressed - until the ball shows its true alien form, morphing into a little green dog whose penchant for mischief gives Dicky a run for his money.

CJ7 (Official site)

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Hong Kong horror 'Yes, I can see dead people' now on DVD

Hong Kong horror ‘Yes, I Can See Dead People’ is up to order on English subbed DVD. Directed by David Lee, as the title might suggest 'I See' has moments of comedy to lighten its otherwise creepy premise, but it still features tense atmosphere and plenty of scares. Steven Cheung departs from his usual sidekick roles to play the lead and is joined by Mandy Chiang (Whispers and Moans) Kris Gu (The Eye 10) and Kathy Yuen.

Synopsis: Nam is a slacker who has the power to see dead people - and he seems to be pretty okay with it. From departed friends to ghostly children, the undead populate the corridors of Nam's housing estate, and he's used to their presence, disturbing though it should be. Things change when his brother Tung (Kris Gu) begins acting distant, and Nam thinks that there may be more going on than just his brother's lack of self control. Estate security guard Fok (Lau Kong) clues Nam in: there are dangerous ghosts too, and one of them is starting to mount his own terror campaign by possessing Nam's neighbors and family. Fok also teaches Nam that those who possess ghost-seeing powers must bear the responsibility to use them properly. But can Nam learn the tricks of the ghost-busting trade before the evil spirits take his brother, for good.

I Can See Dead People trailer (Youtube)

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Makoto Tanaka's 'The Vanished' on English subtitled DVD

Japanese horror The Vanished (aka Ame no Machi) is getting an English friendly DVD release. Based on a short story by Kikuchi Hideyuki, the writer of Vampire Hunter D, Demon City Shinjuku, and Wicked City, the pic is directed by Tanaka Makoto, whose credits include producer of Casshern, artwork for Devil May Cry, and animator on My Neighbor Totoro. ‘The Vanished’ stars Wada Toshihiro (Battle Royale II), Maki Yoko (Sway), and Riko Narumi (Shindo).

Thirty-five years ago, a group of young school children disappeared in the Japanese woods. In present day Japan, a lazy young reporter is tasked to write a story on a child who is found dead with gory injuries and inexplicable missing organs. Suddenly, the child rises from the dead, and takes the journalist on a journey into the woods to unravel a decades-old mystery of what happened to these missing children. With the help of a beautiful young city office clerk, he soon discovers that the children are undead, and have not aged in the 35 years since their disappearance, haunting their families who are intent on ending this cycle of violence.

The Vanished trailer

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New Zealand horror 'The Ferryman' arrives on R2 DVD

As you know we do like to bring you news of films from far flung places, so how about a horror pic from New Zealand? Kiwi Indy horror the ‘The Ferryman’ lands on R2 DVD next week. Directed by Chris Graham and starring John Rhys-Davies (Lord of the Rings), Kerry Fox (Shallow Grave) and Tamer Hassan (Eastern Promises).

The film is slow to get going, but once the pace picks up (and of course people start dying) 'The Ferryman' turns into a good little horror flick. The disc also comes with a pretty robust selection of extras & outtakes, listed below. 'The Ferryman' streets on March 17th.

‘The Ferryman’ follows a group of twenty something couples as they charter a boat for the trip of a lifetime into the South Pacific. Things take a turn for the worse when the group responds to a distress signal of what first appears to be a deserted boat. As the mystery unfolds, they begin to realise that the boat, and its mysterious crew, are inflicted with a terrible curse. Stranded in the middle of the ocean, with no one within hundreds of miles, they discover that The Ferryman is coming…and payment is due!

• Special Features
• Deleted & Alternate Scenes
• Intro to the film with director Chris Graham
• The Ferryman and the Dionysus featurette
• Improvisation with John Rhys-Davies
• Bloopers & Out-takes
• Behind the Scenes of The Ferryman
• Theatrical Trailer

The Ferryman (Official site)

 

A gameshow with a dark twist: '13: Game of Death' arrives on R1 DVD

It's becoming clear that the buyers at Dimension Extreme know their stuff when it comes to great horror. Next out on DVD from the label is the superb Thai horror '13: Game of Death' aka '13 Beloved.' Universally praised by critics, '13' was crowned best of show at last years Puchon Intl. Fantastic Film Festival (PiFan) and won best Asian Film award, from the European Fantastic Film Festival Federation.

'13' tells the story of Pusit who is having the worst day of his life. He just lost his job and is in serious debt. But that's all about to change when he receives a mysterious call with a tempting offer, to become a contestant in a challenging game show. Those playing the game can agree to accept tasks the show offers, but once accepted they must be completed. Completing the task means big rewards, the more you finish the harder the tasks get, but the rewards are far far greater. The harder they get, the darker and more sinister they become.

To see some stills and a trailer, you can check out the still active Thai official site.

13 Game of Death (Official Thai site)

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'Kung Fu Dunk' on English subtitled DVD!

Taiwanese superstar Jay Chou's latest offering, the glossy basketball youth film Kung Fu Dunk hits English subbed DVD this month. Released to hefty box office receipts, the film is loosely based on the popular manga Slam Dunk, but with an added kick of kung fu fun choreographed by award-winning action director Ching Siu Tung (Hero, The Warlords). Hong Kong veteran Eric Tsang co-stars as a sinewy agent, along with Wilson Chen (Blue Gate Crossing) and Twins' Charlene Choi (Simply Actors), looking good as Chou's romantic interest.

Abandoned as an infant, Fang Shi Jie (Jay Chou) grew up in a martial arts school and has acquired himself some impressive fighting skills. He can also throw with amazing accuracy, a talent that grabs the attentions of con man Zhen Li (Eric Tsang). Unwittingly pulled into Zhen's hustling plans, Fang crosses the wrong people and gets kicked out of his martial arts school. Zhen then enrolls Fang into First University in hopes of turning him into a basketball star. After some quick training, Fang and team are tearing through the league to the championships, but some foes from Fang and Zhen's past have money staked on the game, and they're more than willing to play dirty to get their way.

Kung Fu Dunk trailer

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February 08

Indy Zombie horror 'Automaton Transfusion' hits R1 DVD

It has to be said we aren't liking many of the covers Dimension are putting out on their 'Extreme' label DVD's. We are however loving what films they are releasing. Next out on the label is Steven C. Millers low budget, but great looking, Zombie gore fest 'Automaton Transfusion.'

Synopsis: In the early 1970s when everyone in America was worrying about what was going on in Vietnam, the United States Army was secretly developing a way to reanimate the dead. The hope was to have the dead fight instead of the living, but the experiments were shut down when the reanimated corpses were unable to control their hunger for human flesh. Thirty years later the army has decided to reopen the project. Grover City, because of its remote location, would be the home of their main testing facilities. Without warning the experiments go horribly wrong in Grover City and the DEAD are now on the rampage, eating everyone in sight. With the town overtaken by Zombies, a group of High School seniors take it upon themselves to fight back and find a cure for this deadly disease. The four friends battle their way through swamps, forests, blood, and ZOMBIES to survive!

Voted 7th in Fango's top 10 horror pics of 2006, Automatons slick looks belie its small budget origins. 'Automaton Transfusion' is released on March 4th.

Automaton Transfusion trailer

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'The Backwoods' (aka Bosque De Sombras) finally reaches DVD

Great news. Spanish horror thriller 'The Backwoods' (Bosque De Sombras) starring Gary Oldman, is finally making its way to R1 DVD.

Set in the Summer of 1978 'The Backwoods' tells the story of an English couple Lucy (Virginie Ledoyen) and Norman (Paddy Considine) who are going through a difficult patch in their relationship. They decide to spend some time at the house that their friends Paul (Gary Oldman) and his wife Isabel (Aitana Sanchez-Gijón) have bought in the north of Spain. Hidden away in the middle of a forest, and very much off the beaten track, the house seems ideal for some peaceful holidays. Their tranquil summer turns to horror when they discover a girl with horribly mutilated hands in a house in the forest. The locals aren't happy with the outsiders interference and for taking the girl from the house, and soon cultural differences start a whirlpool of violence between them.

'The Backwoods' has received mixed reviews, but we'd say it should be worth a watch, even just to see Oldman (who rarely disappoints with a performance) in action.

The Backwoods site

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Katsuhiro Otomo’s live-action fantasy 'Mushishi ' on R2 DVD

Katsuhiro Otomo’s (‘Akira’ 'Steamboy') latest foray into film making, the beautifully crafted live action fantasy ‘Mushishi,’ is getting an R2 DVD release through Revolver Entertainment. Adapted from a hugely successful Manga novel, ‘Mushishi’ is visually mesmerizing, dark and at times a little bit disturbing. The DVD is released February 25th.

Synopsis: Ginko is a mushishi (bug master) a gifted healer who expertly manipulates the mushi, small, supernatural bugs, in touch with the essence of life and death. Whilst travelling through pre-modern Japan he meets the beautiful Tanyu, a crippled bugmaster who records the history of the mushi by locking them into scrolls. When the mushi escape Tanyu’s scrolls and attack her, Ginko must save Tanyu and at the same time rescue the traces of a vanishing age.

Mushishi trailer

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'Legend of the Black Scorpion' aka 'The Banquet' on R1 DVD

Dragon Dynasty are to release Feng Xiaogang’s stunningly beautiful wuxia epic ‘The Banquet,’ on R1 DVD. Quite why they have decided to re-name the movie with the title 'Legend of the Black Scorpion' eludes us, but the fact that its actually being released is reason enough for celebration.

Loosely based on Shakespeare's Hamlet, the story is set in ancient China during the period of Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms. Against the backdrop of internal turmoil and external threat poised by the neighboring Khitan Empires, lives Empress Wan (Zhang Ziyi ). As beautiful as she is deadly, she harbors forbidden desires for her stepson Crown Prince Wu Luan (Daniel Wu). When the Emperor dies of reasons undetermined and his younger brother Li takes the throne, Wan marries Li to protect Wu Luan and seal her own position in the ruling body. But Li is not a fool and dispatches assassins that ultimately fail to kill Wu Luan. When Emperor Li proclaims a big banquet, Wu Luan and Wan realize it is time to strike.

‘The Banquet’ isn't an all out martial arts action packed pic, so if the likes of House of Flying Daggers or Curse of the Golden Flower wasn't you cup of Java, this wont be for you. However, if jaw dropping cinematography, sumptuous sets, costumes and stunningly choreographed fight scenes are your thing, then 'The Banquet/Scorpion' is a must see. Released as a two-disc Ultimate Edition, the DVD streets on February 26th.

The Banquet trailer

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'Shinobi' finally arrives on UK R2 DVD!

Great news for UK genre fans. Ten Shimoyama's martial arts epic 'Shinobi,' finally arrives on your shores on DVD through Optimum releasing. Now, it has to be said we think this film absolutely rocks, so we'll try to provide you with all the facts without gushing too profusely.

Synopsis: For centuries there lived warriors of darkness with strange powers and arcane skills, living only for battle. They were the Shinobi. The year is 1614 and Japan has been united under the first Shogun. Peace is returning to the land after many years of war. Even the Koga and the Iga, Ninja tribes and bitterest of foes have been bound to live in peace. That is, however, until the nefarious Shogun hatches a plan to rid his kingdom of their power forever. He plots a battle- five Ninja from each Village must fight to the death until just one victorious Ninja survives and has then earned the right to name the next Shogun. Caught in the crossfire of imperial plotting and family honour are Gennosuke (Joe Odagiri) and Oboro (Yukie Nakama) who have fallen deeply in love despite being the heirs of the warring tribes. Their tragic fate is to decide whether to live in honor, or love. With no concern for the star crossed lovers the order forbidding conflict is lifted, the elders choose their best Ninjas and the stage is set for a battle to end all battles.

While there are definite Romeo and Juliet elements to 'Shinobi,' that in no way means it’s lacking in action. The love story acts mainly as a backdrop to the main back plot of unresolved hatred between two ninja clans. It is that hatred that finally erupts into in all out war. With some spectacular effects, and superbly choreographed fight sequences, this is a must for fans of the genre. ‘Shinobi goes on sale today.

Extras: Visual FX of Shinobi Featurette / Visual FX explanation Featurette / Weapons of Shinobi Featurette / Storyboards / Original Trailers / Character Gallery / Stills Gallery

Tech Specs: Feature Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 / Dolby Digital 5.1 / Japanese with English Subtitles.

Shinobi trailer (English subtitled)

Shinobi trailer (Hi-Def)

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Korean thriller 'A Bloody Aria'

Korean director Won Shin-yun’s thriller ‘A Bloody Aria’ is due for release on R1 DVD through ImaginAsian Pictures. At its core ‘Aria’ is a dark comedy, with a twist in the tale of bloody revenge. Throughout the film Won blends his genres from thriller, to full on raw bloody horror. The result is an absolute classic. The movie stars Oh Dal-su (Oldboy, The Host) and Han Seok-gyu (Shiri). ‘A Bloody Aria’ goes on sale Feb 26th.

Synopsis: When a music professor, Yeong-sun (Lee Byuong-jun), takes his beautiful young student, In-jeong (Cha Ye-ryun) for a joyride into the countryside, all hell breaks loose. In-jeong flees the clutches of her would-be-rapist professor only to land in the hands of four disturbed and unsavory local men, with a taste for violence and sadistic humor. It isn’t long before she is back with the professor and it then becomes clear that both Yeong-sun and In-jeong are meant to be pawns in the gang’s cruel psychological games.

A Bloody Aria (Official DVD site) Order the DVD

 

Royal Tramp 1 & 2 on R1 DVD

Bursting with high-energy action Royal Tramp and its sequel Royal Tramp 2, land on DVD February 12, under the Dragon Dynasty label from The Weinstein Company. Stephen Chow (Kung Fu Hustle, Shaolin Soccer) stars as a fast-talking conman who manages to avoid death, all the while trying to save the Ming Dynasty from falling. Based on the book The Deer & The Cauldron, Royal Tramp 1 & 2 are pure Hong Kong action and over the top comedy, at its best.

In ROYAL TRAMP, Wilson Bond (Chow) is a lovable con artist who finagles his way into the confidence of the Ming Court while fomenting a pro-Ching rebellion--and participating in frequent sexual escapades. The courty con man returns for more comic adventures in ROYAL TRAMP 2. This time around, he helps resist an attempt to overthrow the Ching Dynasty and destroy the Heaven and Earth Society.Released together for the first time as a double feature, the two-disc DVD includes commentaries by Hong Kong expert Bey Logan, original theatrical trailers and an interview with ROYAL TRAMP 2’s writer/director Wong Jing.

Royal Tramp 1 trailer

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