The Incoming Blu-ray Catalogue Deluge

As we approach the gift giving season, Ben discusses some of the long awaited Blu-ray titles worthy of your cash this year.

3 minutes & 41 seconds read time

The final quarter of every year is always massive for the consumer sector, especially high value, low cost luxury items such as CD's, DVD's and of course, Blu-ray discs - all carefully released to cash in on the spending patterns of the lucrative holiday season.

As the studios have become more confident about the success of Blu-ray as the successor of DVD technology, we have a veritable treasure trove of catalogue titles being released in the coming months. It doesn't get much bigger than these titles. Let's take a look at the titles that we wait for with baited breathe.

The Blues Brothers

Studio: Universal Home Entertainment

Release Date: August 31

Despite relatively disappointing box office earnings upon release in 1981, The Blues Brothers has gone on to become a musical classic and infamously held the Guinness World Record for the amount of cars destroyed in one movie.

The Blues Brothers is just as relevant as it was 30 years ago and the whip smart script has lost none of its cultural satire, nor its biting edge. The numerous musical items throughout the film have only gone on to become even more popular, unlike the vast majority of soon to be forgotten music produced today.

Whilst this Blu-ray has been released to the US market last month, it sees its first Blu-ray release (along with its ill-advised sequel, Blues Brothers 2000 which has yet to see a US release), in the coming days.


Studio: Universal Home Entertainment

Release Date: August 31

In the same vein as The Blues Brothers, Scarface was not accepted well during its initial cinema run, being lambasted by the majority of notable movie critics of the day, but has gone on to find new life as a cult classic. Some 20 years later it even received a big budget PS2 and Xbox video game release.

The forthcoming Blu-ray release rounds up all previously released bonus material, including a few new additions, but also boasts new video and audio transfers. Scarface has always had a very grungy, grainy look to the film, so it will be interesting to see how the perpetually cheap Universal Studios handles the release. The soundtrack has also been remixed for 7.1 audio systems. Fingers crossed for a good release.

The Lion King

Studio: Disney Home Entertainment

Release Date: October 12

Unlike those extended to Universal, I have no such concerns with Disney, who handle their classics with the upmost care and I doubt that will falter when it comes to the biggest film the studio has ever released - The Lion King.

Coming in three different editions, a 2 disc BD/DVD pack, a 3 disc 3DBD/BD/ DVD pack and a 3 disc BD pack containing the original film, along with the two direct to video sequels ensures you'll have plenty of ways to enjoy 'Hakuna Matata'.

Whilst the announced extras are surprisingly light on, there are a few new features to be included, including some unreleased deleted scenes. The real draw card will be the new high definition transfer which promises to be breathtaking, along with a new 7.1 DTS HD Master Audio soundtrack.

Owners of 3D TVs will likely be intrigued to see the first traditionally animated 3D conversion, which if handled correctly could be quite interesting indeed.

The Jurassic Park Trilogy

Studio: Universal Home Entertainment

Release Date: October 25

Well, it's not a fourth Jurassic Park adventure, but it's probably the next best thing. I've always been a big fan of the franchise (Dinosaurs are of course inherently awesome) and the DVD's are now over a decade old and definitely looking their age. Despite my hesitations with previous Universal releases, I'm hoping that Steven Spielberg has put his foot down to ensure that Universal doesn't cheapen out on their biggest blockbuster series of all time.

Universal have announced the set will carry over all pre-existing extra features whilst also adding a new two hour documentary spanning the three films, and every movies soundtrack has been remixed for 7.1 (seemingly a common trend).

The Star Wars Saga

Studio: Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment

Release Date: September 14

Movie franchises don't get much bigger than Star Wars. Six years since the last movie was released and five years since the inception of the Blu-ray format, George Lucas will finally release the series from its shackles. Lucasfilm is notoriously shady about specifications and importantly what further changes will be made to the trilogy, but all will be revealed soon.

What we do know, however, is that despite featuring many new and vintage bonus features such as the long awaited reveal of original trilogy deleted scenes, none of the original DVD extras, such as the acclaimed 2 and a half hour documentary 'Empire of Dreams' have been ported over, so Star Wars completists will need to hang onto those.

Citizen Kane

Studio: Warner Home Entertainment

Release Date: TBA

"Rosebud". With the mysterious opening, the wheels are set in motion for the story of the life and times of Charles Foster Kane, played and directed by Orson Welles. Frequently voted as the best movie of all time, Citizen Kane has well and truly stood the test of time, with a bravado performance by Wells, a compelling story and editing which was well before its time.

Citizen Kane comes to Blu-ray with a new 4K restoration by Lowry Digital and a raft of Blu-ray supplements, which aims to be the definitive disc version of the film.

Save your pennies Blu-ray fans, because this year, amongst many other high profile releases, will be very expensive indeed!

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Ben joined the TweakTown team in 2008 and has since reviewed 100s of movies. Ben is based in Australia and has covered entertainment news and reviews since 2002. A student of film, Ben brings a wide understanding of the medium to the latest happenings in entertainment circles and the latest blockbuster theatrical reviews.

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