New to View: May 30
"The Last Starfighter" on 4K, the complete "Bonanza" series and a Jason Robards/Olivia de Havilland tragedy headline this week's new releases on home video.
The following titles are being released on Tuesday, May 30, unless otherwise noted:
The Last Starfighter: Limited Edition (4K Ultra HD)
Details: 1984, Arrow Video
Rated: PG, science fiction violence
The lowdown: A teenager living in a trailer park with his mother and younger brother is whisked away to the adventure of a lifetime after achieving the high score on the arcade game Starfighter.
Alex Rogan (Lance Guest) finds himself in outer space after learning that the game was a recruiting tool to find pilots to help defeat a warlike alien race.
The movie is an unpretentious, appealing comic sci-fi fantasy abetted by a solid supporting cast of veterans, most notably Robert Preston and Dan O’Herlihy.
It is exciting and humorous as Alex comes to realize the fate of the galaxy may rest in his hands. The film earned a respectable 76 percent fresh rating at Rotten Tomatoes.
Technical aspects: 2160p, ultra-high definition, 2.35:1 widescreen picture; English 5.1, 4.1 and 2.0 DTS-HD Master Audio; English SDH subtitles.
Don’t miss: Extras include interviews with costar Catherine Mary Stewart and screenwriter Jonathan Betuel, a featurette on composer Craig Safan and his score, a look at the special effects, two archival featurettes and three commentary tracks.
The Siege (Blu-ray)
Details: 2023, Well Go USA Entertainment
Rated: R, violence, language
The lowdown: An assassin, who was compromised during a mission gone wrong, is sent to a reassignment center to receive a new identity and erase any trace of his past jobs.
That is all put on hold when a deadly group of operatives attack the supposedly secure compound. The assassin teams up with a hitwoman and her charge in order to survive the attack.
The movie is laden with deadly action.
Technical aspects: 1080p high definition, 16:9 enhanced widescreen picture; English DTS-HD Master Audio; English SDH subtitles.
Don’t miss: A making of featurette is the main extra.
Noon Wine (DVD)
Details: 1966, Liberation Hall
Rated: Not rated
The lowdown: Jason Robards and Olivia de Havilland star in this adaptation of Katherine Anne Porter’s tragic novella, which she and director Sam Peckinpaugh adapted for the ABC omnibus series, “Stage ’67.”
Robards portrays Royal Earle Thompson who, with his wife, Ellie (De Havilland), and two small sons, live on a dairy farm in southern Texas in the 1890s.
The farm is failing because of Thompson’s laziness, even though the rest of the family helps out.
Things pick up when drifter Olaf Helton (Per Oscarsson) offers to help. He is hired, and Thompson watches as, over the years, his Swedish laborer begins to turn the fortunes of the farm around.
Helton, however, did not tell Thompson that he is a fugitive from a mental institution and that a bounty hunter, Homer T. Hatch (Theodore Bikel), is tracking him.
When the man shows up to take Olaf away, Thompson fearing the loss of Olaf, kills the bounty hunter with an axe.
Thompson is arrested and tried. Though acquitted on the grounds of self-defense, his actions earn him the alienation of his family and the wrath of his neighbors.
Peckinpaugh earned kudos for his direction and resurrected his career after it had been short-circuited by his being blacklisted as difficult to work with.
The disc features two versions of the teleplay, one as originally broadcast and the other commercial free.
Technical aspects: 4x3 full-screen picture; English Dolby digital audio.
Details: 2007, MVD Visual Entertainment-MVD Marquee Collection
Rated: PG-13, language, drug use, violence, sexual content
The lowdown: This action-thriller is pure exploitation, with scantily-clad women, action and explosive violence.
The movie centers on daredevil drivers who race souped-up cars for million-dollar bets — and as the stakes increase, so does the danger.
The movie, which is basically a rip-off of “The Fast and the Furious,” was directed by famed fight choreographer Andy Cheng.
The cast features Nadia Bjorlin, Nathan Phillips, Angus Macfadyen, Tim Matheson and Ernie Reyes Jr.
Technical aspects: 1080p high definition, 2.35:1 widescreen picture; English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio; English and Spanish subtitles.
Don’t miss: Extras include a making of featurette and a look at the film’s appearance at the LA Auto Show.
Warm Water Under a Red Bridge (Blu-ray)
Release date: May 23
Details: 2001, Film Movement Classics
Rated: Not rated
The lowdown: This fantasy-comedy from Japan centers on Yosuke, a businessman in his 40s, who loses his job when his company goes bankrupt.
Earlier, Yosuke had been told by Taro, a homeless old man, about a golden statue he had left years earlier in a house in Noto by the sea.
Yosuke goes to the house where he finds Saeko, the young woman who now lives there. Saeko has an unusual problem — water builds up in her and she can only vent it by wicked acts or through orgasm.
Yosuke helps the woman, and her water gives his life new meaning. He decides to become a fisherman.
The surreal movie is a meditation on life and love. It is gentle and touching, though at 120 minutes, slow paced.
Technical aspects: 1080p high definition, 1.78:1 widescreen picture; Japanese 2.0 Dolby digital; English subtitles.
Bonanza: The Official Complete Series (DVD)
Release date: May 23
Details: 1959-73, CBS DVD-Paramount Home Entertainment
Rated: Not rated
The lowdown: All 14 seasons, 431 episodes, is included in this 112-disc set featuring one of the most popular Western series in TV history.
“Bonanza” is set on the Ponderosa where Ben Cartwright (Lorne Greene) and his three sons, Adam (Pernell Roberts), Hoss (Dan Blocker) and Little Joe (Michael Landon), as they battle to keep their spread from those who want to take it from them.
Over the years, the cast changed. Roberts left at the end of the 1964-65 season, but the series carried on.
Other cast members included Victor Sen Yung, Ray Teal, Bing Russell (father of Kurt), David Canary, Mitch Vogel and Tim Matheson.
Guest stars included Leonard Nimoy, Adam West, DeForest Kelly, Sally Kellerman, Burgess Meredith, Cesar Romero, Lee Marvin, Ricardo Montalban, Charles Bronson, Ron Howard, Robert Vaughn, Robert Culp and Dennis Hopper.
And, of course, there was romance which, many times, ended tragically. It seems the Cartwrights simply had bad luck with women.
Technical aspects: 4x3 full-screen picture; English Dolby digital monaural and Spanish Dolby digital monaural (seasons 9-14); English SDH subtitles.
Don’t miss: Bonus materials included TV appearances by the show’s stars on various shows around the world, bloopers, PSAs and reminisces by cast members, filmmakers and crew staff members. In all, more than 2½ hours of extras.
Other titles being released on Tuesday, unless otherwise indicated:
Maximum Overdrive: Steelbook (Blu-ray + digital) (Lionsgate Home Entertainment)
Please Baby Please (Blu-ray) (Music Box Films)
The Quiet Epidemic (DVD) (First Run Features)
Two Sinners and a Mule (DVD) (Lionsgate)
DIGITAL DOWNLOAD, STREAMING or VOD
How I Met Your Father: Season 2, Part B, Episode 2 (Hulu)
The Walking Dead: The Complete Series (Lionsgate Home Entertainment)
The Clearing: Episode 3 (Hulu)
Drag Me to Dinner (Hulu)
High Desert: Episode 5 (Apple TV+)
Platonic: Episode 4 (Apple TV+)
Saint X: Episode 8 (Hulu)
The Ultimatum: Queer Love: Episodes 5-8 (Netflix)
Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies: Episode 10 (Paramount+)
City of Fire: Episode 6 (Apple TV+)
Esme, My Love (Terror Films)
Silo: Episode 6 (Apple TV+)
The Wind & the Reckoning (Lynmar Film)
I am a founding member of the Indiana Film Journalists Association. I review movies, 4K UHD, Blu-rays and DVDs for ReelBob (ReelBob.com), The Film Yap and other print and online publications. I can be reached by email at email@example.com. You also can follow me on Twitter @ReelBobBloom and on Facebook at ReelBob or the Indiana Film Journalists Association. My movie reviews also can be found at Rotten Tomatoes: www.rottentomatoes.com.