Monday, July 16, 2018

The Quad announces Bob Fosse retrospective "Performance Anxieties," Aug 3-9

Choreographer, actor, writer, director: Bob Fosse wore many hats—aside from the bowler that became his trademark. A live wire who galvanized musical theatre and movies alike, he won nine Tonys, three Emmys, and one Oscar—the latter for Best Director (Cabaret). The Chicago native attended dance school as a teenager and staged numbers at the burlesque houses where he emceed. Debuting on the Great White Way in January 1950, Fosse also performed on television shows a few blocks away, and through several collaborations with Stanley Donen, quickly became the entertainment industry’s most sought-after choreographer for stage and film. The leap into the director’s chair followed—though he was never one to sit still for long—and by the 1970s he had joined the front ranks of American filmmakers. Drawing upon his own life and expanding his art without filters or limits, he guided his actors to transform physically and emotionally, yielding movies (and moves) that stun and exhilarate. So snap your fingers, roll your shoulders, and get ready to be knocked back in your seat by a man whose last name became shorthand for both dynamism and dynamo.

Photo courtesy of The Everett Collection
All That Jazz
Bob Fosse, 1979, U.S., 123m, 35mm
Bob Fosse, 1972, U.S., 124m, 35mm
Damn Yankees
George Abbott/Stanley Donen, 1958, U.S., 111m, 35mm
Bob Fosse, 1974, U.S., 111m, 35mm
The Little Prince
Stanley Donen, 1974, UK/U.S., 88m, 35mm
Liza with a "Z"
Bob Fosse, 1972, U.S., 55m, DCP
My Sister Eileen
Richard Quine, 1955, U.S., 108m, DCP
Star 80
Bob Fosse, 1983, U.S., 103m, 35mm
Sweet Charity
Bob Fosse, 1969, U.S., 149m, DCP

Remembering George A. Romero.

A year ago a man passed away. For years I argued that George Romero was an Master Filmmaker and people just shrugged it off, but I was proven right by the great resurgence he had at the tail end of his career and even got to interview him during the time when Land of the Dead was about to be released for the first time on DVD. Often copied, but never equaled and always ahead of his time as well as a true artist, I love George A. Romero and miss him, but I am thankful by the body of work he left us and it's insights that are beginning to be understood by others now. I feel very blessed to have talked to him, interviewed him and even made him laugh. George was more than a hero and filmmaker to me, he was a human being. A truly great one at that. Thank you George and thank you all. R.I.P.

Mark A. Rivera
Author, Writer and Reviewer
July 16, 2018
Brooklyn, New York

Friday, July 13, 2018

A Quiet Place 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray + Digital Copy Review.

John Krasinski Co-Wrote, Directed and even starred A Quiet Place, which costars his real life wife Emily Blunt, who plays his character's wife in the film too. The story is pretty straight forward in that somehow carnivorous alien creatures that are blind, but through their acute hearing hunt for prey with stealth and alacrity. A human family has adopted to a life where they are cautious not to make a sound and communicate mostly through sign language. After a tragedy that occurs at the beginning of the film, his daughter believes her father no longer loved her and feels increasingly disassociated from him as the hearing aids he makes for her don't seem to work.

Soon after the family is forced to use their survival skills individually and for each other as everything they have come to know are put to the test with deep emotional and physical stakes on the line.

A Quiet Place looks fantastic in both 4K Ultra HD and 1080p/24fps full HD with the high dynamic range of the colors that more so than any other factor makes the film more vibrant in daytime scenes and sport a somewhat inky blackness in night sequences. 

The big star of the film on disc is the English Dolby ATMOS Soundtrack that creates an ever enveloping field of sound that almost evolves in quality as things develop toward the film's climax.

Both discs also features French, Spanish and Portuguese Language 5.1 Dolby Audio Tracks coupled with an English Descriptive Audio Track for the Visually Impaired as well as English Subtitles for the Deaf and Hearing Impaired and English, French, Spanish and Portuguese Language Subtitles encoded as options.

Three featurettes covering the production (14:95), Sound Editing (11:44) and visual effects (7:33) collectively they give some insight as to the nature of the creatures in the story as well as their backstory as to where the creatures came from. This was talked about off camera during preproduction, but is not made public in the featurettes or feature film itself so don't go into it expecting an answer, but at least you will know, they put thought into developing them.

An insert containing a choice of either a limited time only redeemable code for an iTunes or an Ultraviolet Digital Copy is included within the black Ultra HD BD case.

A Quiet Place 4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray + Digital Copy is available now at retailers on and offline courtesy of Paramount Home Entertainment.

(C) Copyright 2018 By Mark A. Rivera
All Rights Reserved. 

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

BOOK CLUB Comes to Digital August 14th & to Blu-ray/DVD August 28th




Arrives on Digital August 14, 2018


Blu-ray Combo Pack Debuts August 28 with Nearly an Hour of 
Wildly Funny Bonus Content


HOLLYWOOD, Calif.  – Hailed as “pure comedy gold” (Andrew Freund, Dish Nation-FOX TV) and “fifty shades of great” (Pete Hammond, Deadline), the delightfully entertaining BOOK CLUB debuts on Digital August 14, 2018 and on               Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD August 28 from Paramount Home Media Distribution.


Starring legendary actresses Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen and 
Mary Steenburgen, BOOK CLUB follows four lifelong friends whose lives are turned upside down to hilarious ends when their book club attempts to shake things up by tackling the infamous "Fifty Shades of Grey."  From discovering new romance to rekindling old flames, they inspire each other to make their next chapter the best chapter.  The film also stars Andy Garcia, Don Johnson, Craig T. Nelson, 
Richard Dreyfuss and Ed Begley Jr.


The Blu-ray Combo Pack is loaded with uproarious bonus content including deleted and extended scenes, interviews with filmmakers and the iconic cast, explorations of the writing and casting process and behind-the-scenes footage from the set.  


BOOK CLUB Blu-ray Combo Pack

The BOOK CLUB Blu-ray is presented in 1080p high definition with English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, French 5.1 Dolby Audio, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Audio, and English Audio Description and English, English SDH, French, and Spanish subtitles.  The DVD in the Combo Pack is presented in widescreen enhanced for 16:9 televisions with English 5.1 Dolby Audio, French 5.1 Dolby Audio, Spanish 5.1 Dolby Audio, and English Audio Description and English, French, and Spanish subtitles.   The Combo Pack includes access to a Digital copy of the film as well as the following: 


·         Feature film in high definition

·         Bonus Content: Go inside the making of Book Club!

o   Deleted & Extended Scenes

o   It All Started with a Book –The journey from script to screen

o   Casting Book Club –Working with Hollywood icons

o   Location, Location, Location – Visit the set with filmmakers

o   A New Chapter – The cast discuss themes of friendship and romance Living in the Moment – Creating the film’s theme song



·         Feature film in standard definition

Monday, July 9, 2018

Public Image Limited announces Rotten North American Tour

Public Image Ltd. (L-R) Lu Edmonds, John Lydon, Scott Firth, Bruce Smith (photo Tomohiro Noritsune).

In celebration of their 40th Anniversary,JOHN LYDON’s PUBLIC IMAGE LTD (PiL) have announced THE PUBLIC IMAGE IS ROTTEN: NORTH AMERICAN TOUR, will kick off in New Orleans onTuesday, October 9 (see below for all dates). Tickets go on-sale startingFriday, July 13 at 10:00AM local time. Further PUBLIC IMAGE LTDactivity includes the release of THE PUBLIC IMAGE IS ROTTEN a career–spanning box set (out July 20) and a new documentary film of the same name, the latter of which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York and at London’s Raindance Festival. Directed by Tabbert Fiiller and released by Abramorama, the film will make its North American theatrical premiere onFriday, September 14 in New York Cityat Metrograph with more theatrical dates in October-November to coincide with PiL’s North American fall tour. View the trailer for THE PUBLIC IMAGE IS ROTTEN film (here).

THE PUBLIC IMAGE IS ROTTEN:NORTH AMERICAN TOUR arrives on the heels of the band’s current headliningUK/Europe tour which has included a number of sold-out shows as well as festival performances and Japanesedates. The group’s worldwide tour in 2016 was regarded by many as the best performances the band have ever played; it followed the release of their 10th studio album ‘What The World Needs Now…’ (2015) and the critically-acclaimed ‘This is PiL’ (2012) which marked the band’s first album in 17 years. ‘What The World Needs Now’peaked at number 29 in the official UK album charts and picked up fantastic acclaim worldwide from both the press and public. (The album also peaked atnumber 3 in the official UK indie charts and number 4 in the official UK vinyl charts). ‘What The World Needs Now…’ was self-funded by PiL and released on their own label ‘PiL Official’ via Cargo UK Distribution.
Widely regarded as one of the most innovative and influential bands of all time, PiL’s music and vision earned them 5 UK Top 20 singles and 5 UK Top 20 albums. With a shifting line-up and unique sound, JOHN LYDON guided the band from their debut album ‘First Issue’ in 1978 through to 1992’s ‘That What Is Not’. After a 17-year hiatus,LYDON reactivated PiL in 2009 by taking them back on the road worldwide.
JOHN LYDON, LU EDMONDS, SCOTT FIRTH and BRUCE SMITH continue asPiL and remain the longest stable line-up in the band’s history.
John Lydon - After fronting the Sex Pistols, John Lydon formed Public Image Ltd in 1978. Outside of PiL John has released several solo records and collaborations. He also brings quality TV to the masses and has recently released the autobiography ‘Anger is an Energy: My Life Uncensored’.
Lu Edmonds - Multi instrumentalist and former guitarist in The Damned, Lu joined PiL in 1986 recording and playing on the album ‘Happy?’ and co-writing the album ‘9’, adding yet another dimension to the PiL sound.
Bruce Smith - Drummer in The Pop Group and formerly of The Slits Bruce became percussionist for PiL in 1986 playing and recording on the albums ‘Happy?’ and ‘9’. Seen as a drumming virtuoso, Bruce brought his unique style into the fold. 
Scott Firth - A bass player/multi instrumentalist that has collaborated and played with a variety of top musicians and bands including Steve Winwood, John Martyn and Elvis Costello.
TUE    10/9    New Orleans, LA       The Civic Theatre
WED   10/10  Atlanta, GA                Variety Playhouse                  
FRI     10/12  Washington, DC        Black Cat
SAT    10/13  Asbury Park, NJ         Asbury Lanes 
MON   10/15  Brooklyn, NY              Brooklyn Steel
TUE    10/16  Philadelphia, PA        Union Transfer                       
THU    10/18  Montreal, QC             Club Soda
FRI     10/19  Toronto, ON               Lee's Palace  
SUN   10/21  Detroit, MI                  The Majestic
MON   10/22  Chicago, IL                 Thalia Hall                  
WED   10/24  Dallas, TX                  Granada Theatre
THU    10/25  Austin, TX                  The Mohawk  
SUN   10/28  Portland, OR              Wonder Ballroom
MON   10/29  Seattle, WA                Showbox        
WED  10/31  San Francisco, CA     The Chapel
THU    11/1    San Francisco, CA     The Chapel
SAT    11/3    Los Angeles, CA        El Rey           
TUE    11/6    Mexico City, MX         Pepsi Centre
FRI     9/14    New York City, NY    The Metrograph

For more information on PUBLIC IMAGE LTD, visit:

The career-spanning, new music documentary on the band THE PUBLIC IMAGE IS ROTTEN from Abramoramaand Verisimilitude, tells the story of music icon John Lydon and his pioneering group PiL with a level of depth and intimacy never-before-seen. Following a sold-out screening at Camden London’s Odeon Cinema, the film is now set for release in multiple theaters across the United Kingdom and select European cities throughout the summer, followed by a North American theatrical tour in the fall kicking off at New York City’s downtown Metrograph. Directed by Tabbert Fiiller and Producedby Tyler Brodie, Hunter Gray, Phaedon Papadopoulos and Tabbert Fiiller, THE PUBLIC IMAGE IS ROTTEN features in-depth interviews with JOHN LYDON,former and current PiL bandmates as well as Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers), Ad-Rock (Beastie Boys) and Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth) among others, and the film is loaded with electrifying archival performance and interview footage.

Monday, July 2, 2018

The Handmaid's Tale: Episode 13: Second Season Finale Review

As we come closer to the end of the decade, shows like Game of Thrones will be coming to a close and other shows like AMC's The Walking Dead should end before the network runs it into the ground. However just as the revival on both the big and small screen shows no sign of slowing down, new dramas that just happen to be associated with genre entertainment are rising to the forefront. My favorite genre television shows are now in first place, the Hulu original series The Handmaid's Tale and in second place, The Expanse, which just wrapped up it's third season on SYFY and will continue with a fourth season and hopefully more on Amazon Prime Video. Both are based on popular books though the similarities end there. Margret Atwood's acclaimed novel has expanded beautifully on television and Elizabeth Moss, who Stars and Produces has created a character from the novel that is far more developed with nuances that the feature film version from the 1990s simply cannot compete with though that is not because the film is bad in any way because it is not. It is just that in this "golden age" of television, the very nature of scripted serialized television can do a lot of things that a feature film simply cannot. So I hope this Fall The Handmaid's Tale sweeps at the Emmys and I hope it does the same at the Golden Globes next winter because the show deserves it and more.
This season has managed to expand the world and show the viewer things that illustrate how Giliad did not happen over night. It was gradual with punctuated instances that have effected our characters in ways no one could have foreseen. Now we know that there is still a remnant of the United States in existence. We know what the colonies are like because we have seen them and we see Giliad brutalizes everyone sooner or later.
Yet there is hope and that is what the finale drives home along with the balance between seemingly bad things and good things being an undercurrent theme this entire season. The finale left me wanting more in a way I never considered and completely subverted my expectations again.
I do wonder how Giliad is able to stay stable as a government? What natural resources they have outside of Handmaids, which are too precious to trade in any practical quantity because without them, Gilead is finished. So how does a religious dictatorship to oppressive to all of it's citizens survive on it's own? Hopefully we will learn in season three.
I wish I could go into greater detail, but I truly think the less one knows, the better. The second season finale of The Handmaid's Tale will premiere exclusively on Hulu ready to stream on July, 11, 2018.
(C) Copyright 2018 By Mark A. Rivera
All Rights Reserved.