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    Exclusive Interview With Robert Matzen: Author Of Fireball: Carole Lombard and the Mystery of Flight 3

    Posted in Podcasts by Gino Sassani on February 22nd, 2017

    He’s back. I’m talking about author Robert Matzen. I spoke to Robert at Christmas about his amazing book Mission: Jimmy Stewart And The Fight For Europe. You can catch up on that interview Here. Now he has released a new edition of his book Fireball: Carole Lombard and the Mystery of Flight 3 which tells the story of the fiery plane crash that took the life of Carole Lombard, her mother, and Otto Winkler, who was Clark Gable’s assistant and best friend, on January 16, 1942. The plane was also carrying American servicemen who were an important part of the World War II effort. This new edition contains brand new material and has been released for the 75th anniversary of the tragic crash. I can tell you that it’s a page-turner that you’ll find hard to put down. (Of course, that could have to do with the sticky stuff they put all over the cover. Just kidding.) All the while as I was reading the book I was looking forward to another conversation with the author. We finally got to talk again. Now you can hear every word. Bang it here to listen in on my chat with Robert Matzen.

    The book is out now on GoodKnight Books.

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    Arrival (UHD Blu-ray) (4K)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on February 15th, 2017

    “There are days that define your story beyond your life. Like the day they arrived…”

    The problem is that this starts out with the kind of story we’ve seen a thousand times before. The alien invasion theme is nothing new. H.G. Wells was describing it back in the 19th Century with War of the Worlds. Unrelated Orson Welles scared the crap out of a depression-era radio audience with the same story. Independence Day gave us a brilliantly visual story that also begins the same way: alien ships begin to take strategic positions around the world. Here we go again, right? Wrong. We should have guessed from the beginning that when director Denis Villeneuve tackles a genre, he’s going to turn it on his head. We’d seen him do it before.
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    Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: The Complete Series

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on February 15th, 2017

    “It is the unknown that defines our existence. We are constantly searching, not just for answers to our questions, but for new questions. We are explorers. We explore our lives day by day, and we explore the galaxy trying to expand the boundaries of our knowledge. And that is why I am here: not to conquer you with weapons or ideas, but to coexist and learn.” 

    No Star Trek series has divided Trek fans as much as the 1993 release of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.
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    Contest: Win Quarry: The Complete First Season On DVD From HBO

    Posted in Contests by Gino Sassani on February 14th, 2017

    HBO is known for their quality original programs. The latest to join the elite list is Quarry. This is a 1970’s period-piece that reminds one of The Deer Hunter. It’s a high-octane drama and HBO is giving us a copy of the Complete First Season on DVD to pass on to one of our lucky readers. John will be telling you more in his upcoming review. You’ll want to get in on this series from the ground floor.

    To win a copy of this prize, follow these instructions.

    1. Fill out your name and email address in the comment form below – your email address will remain private and visible only to us.
    2. Do not post your address as an actual comment!  Instead tell us – What is your favorite HBO series of all time?
    3. Only those comments that answer our question will be considered.

    Contest is open to residents of the U.S. & Canada only, and will conclude on Sunday, March 26th, 2017
    Please – only one contest entry per person!

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    John Wick: Chapter 2

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on February 13th, 2017

    “You wanted me back. I’m back.”

    Keanu Reeves has enjoyed somewhat of a career renaissance thanks in no small part to the success of John Wick in 2014. There he teamed up with some stunt friends of his going back to The Matrix, and together they brought a new action hero to the screen that was as much graphic novel as it was action film. It would become the directing debut of the stunt team of Stahelsky and David Leitch. Along with their action star, everyone stuck to what they knew and refused to overcomplicate the whole thing.
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    Vice Principals: The Complete First Season

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on February 10th, 2017

    Danny McBride managed to inhabit the role of Kenny Powers to such an extent that I do appear to have trouble keeping them separate. I thought that the arrival of a new series would finally put that issue to rest. I’m discovering there was a reason I had trouble telling them apart. They are indeed the same person. Add to the situation that Vice Principals uses the same writing and production team headed by McBride and Jody Hill, and there are moments when you will think that you’re still watching Eastbound And Out. The wild card that changes things up enough happens to be Walter Goggins. Goggins came to notice as the cold Shane in The Shield and the quirky Boyd Crowder in Justified.
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    Frankenstein: The Real Story/The Real Wolfman

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on February 8th, 2017

    “It killed 102 people, brutally mauling its human prey. Its victims are all women and children. The worst attack by an unknown beast in history, and the basis for the legend of the werewolf. Two investigators set out to solve the mystery. Applying modern day forensics, they hunt to uncover the real wolfman.”

    With the Universal remake of one of its classic monsters, you can expect to see a lot of related material come out of the woodwork to capitalize on the buzz.
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    Interview With Jeffrey Arrington Of Dead West

    Posted in Podcasts by Gino Sassani on February 6th, 2017

    Dead West comes out on DVD from RLJ Entertainment on Tuesday the 7th. The film follows a serial killer who makes his way across the country leaving dead blonde women in his wake. Jeffrey Arrington plays Tony. Tony’s sister is the first victim of the Lady Killer. He sets out to inflict some frontier justice of his own. I had the chance to talk with him about the movie last week. He has some interesting insights into the character and the film. Now you can check out what he had to say. Bang it here to listen in on my chat with Jeffrey Arrington.

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    Story Of God: Season 1

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on February 6th, 2017

    Who or what is God? Does he perform miracles here on Earth? What happens to us when we die? Is there true evil on this earth? How was the universe created? How will it all end? These are the kinds of questions for which there are no concrete answers to be found in the world around us. These are the subjects that require us to turn to our faith or belief systems. The answers might be found in our culture. You might even have had experiences that have brought you closer to the answers. This is meaning-of-life stuff, and the answer might just be 42.
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    The Comedian

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on February 5th, 2017

    Robert De Niro is arguably one of the most talented actors living today. There’s little doubt that he’ll long be remembered as a legendary force in motion picture history. But there has long been a downside to the iconic actor. He hasn’t had a good starring role in over a decade. It looks too often as if he’s been more interested in chasing a likely unneeded paycheck than adding to his already established legacy. For every Godfather Part 2 or Deer Hunter, there’s a Dirty Grandpa or Fockers sequel. For each Good Fellas or Raging Bull, there’s a Stone. And since the turn of the millennium, De Niro has gravitated more and more to comedy.
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    Pinocchio: Walt Disney Signature Collection (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on February 2nd, 2017

    “When you wish upon a star. Makes no difference who you are. Anything your heart desires will come to you. If your heart is in your dream, no request is too extreme.When you wish upon a star, as dreamers do… Like a bolt out of the blue, fate steps in and sees you through. When you wish upon a star, your dreams come true.”

    The song has become a standard. Every kid knows it. Walt Disney Studios has made it their theme song. You hear it each time you load up a Disney disc. If you have been fortunate enough to have visited Walt Disney World, you’ve heard it the entire day long.
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    Ballers: Season 2 (Blu-ray)

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on February 2nd, 2017

    American football has been making the news of late, and not just in the sports pages. For the last couple of years there has been an increasing concern for players’ safety. From our former president declaring he wouldn’t let his fictional son play the game to the hard-hitting Will Smith film Concussion, football has taken some heat over its violent nature. Players are retiring early, and the subject of life after football becomes more of a social question than ever before. That’s where HBO’s Ballers comes in. It’s a half-hour look at the NFL from the player perspective, both current and retired. It’s intended as a light bit of dramedy, and it certainly is that. Even so, the series doesn’t hide from some of the brutal realities of the sport, from the trappings of fame and fortune to the realities of its eventual end.
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    Tuesday Round Up: January 24th, 2017

    Posted in Tuesday Round Up by Gino Sassani on January 24th, 2017

    Howdy, Partners. Johnny’s a bit out to sea at the moment. Actually, he’s taking a cruise with Katie on that long-overdue honeymoon. I sure hope Tom Hanks isn’t driving the boat. Guess you’ll find out next week. For now, you’re stuck with me for this week’s release/review round-up.

    Lionsgate is down for David Bowie’s cult classic The Man Who Fell To Earth in a collector’s edition Blu-ray. Baby will fill us in on A Dog’s Purpose in this week’s theatrical releases. National Geographic and Fox will scare up Sea Monsters on DVD. Maybe I should have passed that one on to John. It’s a slow week but there’s tons of stuff on the horizon.

    And, Partners, don’t forget. If you’ll be making that video withdrawal from Amazon, lasso yourself one of our many links to get there. It helps keep us going here on the Upcomingdiscs ranch. Until next week, share some light with someone this week… television light, that is.

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    The Founder

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on January 23rd, 2017

    “I know what you’re thinking: How the heck does a 52-year old milkshake machine salesman build a fast food empire with over 1600

    restaurants and an annual income over $700 million? One word:” The Founder.

    When I was very young, my mother dressed up as Ronald McDonald for a McDonalds block party for a charity benefit. In those days McDonalds helped organize these things, including the provision of said Ronald McDonald outfit. I was just a kid, but seeing my mother put on the costume kind of killed the last of the childhood fantasies. I guess we all thought Ronald was the guy who invented McDonalds. We thought he was the founder. I figured that was the big reveal. That was until I saw The Founder,
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    Rizzoli & Isles: The Complete Seventh and Final Season

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on January 17th, 2017

    The premise here was always dirt simple. They’ve taken the buddy cop idea and found a way to work in the forensics science fad and deliver a procedural with a few twists. The show is based on a series of mystery novels by Tess Gerritsen, who introduced us to Jane Rizzoli & Maura Isles in 2001. Tess makes a cameo appearance in this, the show’s final season. The season is shorter than the usual 18 shows. There are 13, and in all of them you can feel the weight of the characters and their situations counting down until the final episode of the series. You’ll be able to see where that’s going pretty much from the beginning. After seven years, you can look forward to a tearful goodbye as the show exits on its own terms.
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    OPPO UDP-203 Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc Player

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on January 16th, 2017

    The young Ultra High Definition Blu-ray market has pretty much been a limited competition between a couple of players. Upcomingdiscs obtained an early version of the Samsung player in order to get UHD 4K reviews to our readers. The player allowed me to do that but had so many limitations that those reviews certainly suffered. The most obvious was an inability to provide codec bitrates. All of that changes now that Oppo has entered the UHD market. Oppo is no stranger to 4K. Previous models that we’ve reviewed here already provided rather sweet 4K upconvert options to early adopters of 4K televisions. We received our unit during the holidays, and I have been putting it through some serious paces. Needless to say this will be our go-to unit going forward. However long you think the UHD market has been out there, it truly begins with the release of the Oppo UDP-203
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    Star Trek: Enterprise: The Complete Series

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on January 16th, 2017

    “It’s been a long time getting from there to here.”

    35 years, to be exact. Enterprise is the fourth spinoff from the original 1960’s hopeful series. The Earth is finally ready to send its first starship to explore the vast galaxy. This first starship Enterprise is smaller than the ships we’ve become used to. There are no shields or photon torpedoes. The transporter has only been cleared for inanimate objects. Not that this stands in the way of its occasional “emergency” use. The ship is very much like the cramped spaces of today’s submarines. It adds an even greater sense of reality to the show. The crew is composed of Captain Jonathan Archer (Bakula), First Officer and Vulcan High Command liaison, T’Pol (Blalock), Chief Engineer Charles (Trip) Tucker (Trinneer)
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    Interview With Ice Cube For Fist Fight

    Posted in Uncategorized by Gino Sassani on January 11th, 2017

    On Feb 17th, 2017 Warner Brothers will release the comedy Fist Fight starring Ice Cube and Charlie Day. The two teachers come into conflict when one gets the other fired. An old-fashion afterschool fist fight between the stars is the consequence. I’ll have a chance to tell you my thoughts on the film when it comes out.  I had the rare opportunity to sit down with Ice Cube to talk about the film. Fortunately, he didn’t challenge me to a fight after our talk. You can check out the film in Feb. Click here to watch the video with Ice Cube

     

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    Sleepy Hollow: Season 3

    Posted in Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on January 10th, 2017

    “Evil has returned to Sleepy Hollow.”

    With the big bad finally destroyed and an apocalypse averted, the dynamic duo of Sleepy Hollow have gone their separate ways. Abby is now with the FBI, while Crane has gone into seclusion and ends up in jail for trying to sneak an artifact into the country from his homeland of Scotland. Abby gets him out of trouble only to discover that the tablet Crane found in his family crypt back in Europe holds more prophesy for the pair of witnesses. The two have to come back together to save the world from yet another end of times
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    12 Days Of Christmas Giveaways – Day 12: Mission: Jimmy Stewart and the Fight for Europe By Robert Matzen

    Posted in Contests by Gino Sassani on January 5th, 2017

    On The Twelfth Day Of Christmas GoodKnight Books Gives To You:

    Mission: Jimmy Stewart And The Fight For Europe. You’ve been hearing a lot about this wonderful book by Robert Matzen. I had the opportunity to talk with him. You can revisit that chat Here. We also made it one of our unpaid Holiday Gift Guide Spotlights. Now you’re going to have a chance to win a copy for yourself. We truly saved the best for last. Thanks to our new friends at GoodKnight Books I have a hardbound copy to give to one Upcomingdiscs reader. If you enter just one of our contests this year, make it this one.

    To win a copy of this prize, follow these instructions.

    1. Fill out your name and email address in the comment form below – your email address will remain private and visible only to us.
    2. Do not post your address as an actual comment!  Instead tell us – What was the best Christmas/Holiday gift you ever got.
    3. Only those comments that answer our question will be considered.

     

    Contest is now closed Winner is Rosalie 

    Winners are notified by E-mail. If you did not get a confirmation E-mail from us, check your Spam filter and contact us. Any prize not claimed in 2 weeks will be forfeit and be placed in the end of year contests next Holiday Season.

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    12 Days Of Christmas Giveaways – Day 11: The Odd Couple: Season 1 On DVD From CBS

    Posted in Contests by Gino Sassani on January 4th, 2017

    On The Eleventh Day Of Christmas CBS Gives To You:

    The Odd Couple: Season 1 on DVD. First it was Jack Lemmon and Walter Mathau. Later it would be Tony Randall and Jack Klugman. An early 1980’s black version featured Ron Glass and Demond Wilson. In 1998 the original pairing of Lemmon and Mathau reprised the roles. Now it’s Thomas Lennon and Matthew Perry. Of course, I’m talking about Felix Unger and Oscar Madison from Neil Simon’s brilliant The Odd Couple. CBS has brought back the popular concept now heading into second season. They’ve given us 2 copies of the complete first season to give away to a couple of Upcomingdiscs readers.

    To win a copy of this prize, follow these instructions.

    1. Fill out your name and email address in the comment form below – your email address will remain private and visible only to us.
    2. Do not post your address as an actual comment!  Instead tell us – Are you the OCD Felix or the sloppy Oscar?
    3. Only those comments that answer our question will be considered.

    Contest is now closed Winners are Dawn Ballo & Judy Hunting

    Winners are notified by E-mail. If you did not get a confirmation E-mail from us, check your Spam filter and contact us. Any prize not claimed in 2 weeks will be forfeit and be placed in the end of year contests next Holiday Season.

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    12 Days Of Christmas Giveaways – Day 10: Noma & Entertainment On Blu-ray From Magnolia

    Posted in Contests by Gino Sassani on January 3rd, 2017

    On The Tenth Day Of Christmas Magnolia Home Entertainment Gives To You:

    Noma: My Perfect Storm & Entertainment on Blu-ray. Magnolia has been a powerhouse this Christmas for Upcomingdiscs and for all of you guys. I have 1 copy each of these films on Blu-ray. Noma: My Perfect Storm: Noma is the name of the award-winning Copenhagen restaurant operated by Chef Rene Redzepi. The film dips into Redzepi’s origin story. Entertainment: An aging comedian ends up on a tour of dive venues while attempting to re-connect with his estranged daughter.

    To win a copy of this prize, follow these instructions.

    1. Fill out your name and email address in the comment form below – your email address will remain private and visible only to us.
    2. Do not post your address as an actual comment!  Instead tell us – Which title would you want?
    3. Only those comments that answer our question will be considered.

    Contest is now closed Winners are Jim Gardner & John H

    Winners are notified by E-mail. If you did not get a confirmation E-mail from us, check your Spam filter and contact us. Any prize not claimed in 2 weeks will be forfeit and be placed in the end of year contests next Holiday Season.

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    12 Days Of Christmas Giveaways – Day 9: Blu-rays & DVD’s From Magnolia

    Posted in Contests by Gino Sassani on January 2nd, 2017

    On The Ninth Day Of Christmas Magnolia Home Entertainment Gives To You:

    It’s another huge bag of goodies from Magnolia. They’ve given me copies of the following titles on Blu-ray and DVD: The Last King. Imagine if Three Men and a Baby was remade with just two guys, a baby, a battle axe, and a bunch of arrows. Despite its exceedingly generic Americanized title, The Last King has a little something different to offer action-weary movie watchers. Then there is A War. This one is about a Danish commander and his weary, overwhelmed young soldiers fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan. Finally we have Drunk Stoned Brilliant Dead: The True Story Of National Lampoon. That’s six total winners for this contest. Odds look pretty good thanks to our Holiday heroes over at Magnolia Home Entertainment.

    To win a copy of this prize, follow these instructions.

    1. Fill out your name and email address in the comment form below – Your email address will remain private and visible only to us.
    2. Do not post your address as an actual comment!  Instead tell us – What movie are you most looking forward to in 2017?
    3. Only those comments that answer our question will be considered.

    Contest is now closed Winner is Leslie Crosbie

    Winners are notified by E-mail. If you did not get a confirmation E-mail from us, check your Spam filter and contact us. Any prize not claimed in 2 weeks will be forfeit and be placed in the end of year contests next Holiday Season.

    Thanks to John Ceballos for some of the prize descriptions.

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    12 Days Of Christmas Giveaways – Day 8: National Geographic DVD’s From Fox

    Posted in Contests by Gino Sassani on January 1st, 2017

    On The Eighth Day Of Christmas Fox Home Entertainment Gives To You:

    A huge collection of National Geographic television DVD sets. You get Mygrations Season 1, which follows a group of humans migrating across the Serengeti. In Return From The Dead Dr. Steven Laureys investigates death and the human brain. When Sharks Attack Season 3 continues to look into shark attacks across the world. Animals Gone Wild Season 3 takes us from jungles to the depths of the ocean where animals reveal fierce natures. Finally there’s Missing Dial which looks into the case of Cody Roman Dial, who vanished in 2014. It’s all going to one lucky winner thanks to Upcomingdiscs and Fox Home Entertainment.

    To win a copy of this prize, follow these instructions.

    1. Fill out your name and email address in the comment form below – Your email address will remain private and visible only to us.
    2. Do not post your address as an actual comment!  Instead tell us – What would you like us NOT to change here at Upcomingdiscs?
    3. Only those comments that answer our question will be considered.

    Contest is now closed Winner is Forrest Johnson

    Winners are notified by E-mail. If you did not get a confirmation E-mail from us, check your Spam filter and contact us. Any prize not claimed in 2 weeks will be forfeit and be placed in the end of year contests next Holiday Season.

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    12 Days Of Christmas Giveaways – Day 7: Time Life Bag Of Goodies

    Posted in Contests by Gino Sassani on December 31st, 2016

    On The Seventh Day Of Christmas Time-Life Gives To You:

    A wonderful bag of vintage entertainment. One lucky winner is going to receive Bob Hope: Hope For The Holidays on DVD. It’s the 1993 special where Bob Hope looks back at some of his classic holiday moments. You also get The Red Skelton Hour In Color. This 3 DVD set features full color episodes of the classic show. Guests include John Wayne and Mickey Rooney. Add Hee Haw Salute, which gives you another 3 DVD set this time featuring vintage moments from the old show featuring performances by Johnny Cash and Loretta Lynn. Finally, it’s The Tonight Show With Johnny Carson Featuring Jerry Seinfeld. Catch some wonderful moments with Johnny and Jerry. It’s where the star got his start. You get all of this free thanks to our wonderful friends at Time-Life.

    To win a copy of this prize, follow these instructions.

    1. Fill out your name and email address in the comment form below – Your email address will remain private and visible only to us.
    2. Do not post your address as an actual comment!  Instead tell us – What would you like to see changed here at Upcomingdiscs?
    3. Only those comments that answer our question will be considered.

    Contest is now closed Winner is Darla

    Winners are notified by E-mail. If you did not get a confirmation E-mail from us, check your Spam filter and contact us. Any prize not claimed in 2 weeks will be forfeit and be placed in the end of year contests next Holiday Season.

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