DVD Day: March 8th, 2011


?? The Walking Dead: Season One
The pros and cons of AMC’s adaptation of Robert Kirkman’s comic have been discussed on TR ad nauseum, so all I’ll say is that thanks to director Frank Darabont, the show looks beautiful. It looks like a damn movie, frankly. There are definitely worse things to get on Blu-ray.

? Mystery Science Theater 3000: Vol. XX
This set include all Joel episodes. First off is the season one episode Project Moonbase, of which I remember nothing. Then there’s The Magic Voyage of Sinbad, which is actually not about Sinbad at all, but some bizarre Russo-Finnish fairy tale that Roger Corman redubbed to star someone Americans had heard of. It’s perfectly solid, and the movie, though insane, is definitely better than most MST flicks. But the real draw is Master Ninja 1 and 2, two “movies” — i.e., four episodes of a terrible ’80s show, edited poorly into two feature-length films. The show was about Lee van Cleef, who played “the first Occidental American ever to become a ninja,” and the mush-mouthed Tim van Patten as his student. Basically, they travel in a van and save one of the thousands of small towns that were under the control of evil sheriffs/politicians/factory owners/whatever that ’80s TV shows were full of. Oh, and there was an evil ninja chasing Lee van Cleef, and a super-young Demi Moore shows up, van Cleef’s stunt double is clearly 50 pounds lighter than him, and van Patten has a pet hamster, it’s all just grand.

? Nausicaa of the Valley of Wind
Disney releases Hayao Miyazaki’s post-apocalyptic masterpiece on Blu-ray. Well done, Disney. Now call me when you release Porco Rosso, Spirited Away and My Neighbor Totoro on Blu-ray.

? Excalibur
On Blu-ray. Excalibur will always hold a special place in my heart, partially because it was the film whose success allowed John Boorman to make Zardoz, a masterpiece of what-the-fuckery, and partially because it was one of the first films I ever saw that had a naked lady in it.

? Tales from Earthsea
The anime movie made by Hayao Miyazaki’s son Goro based on the beloved fantasy series. Two people disliked it — Ursula K. Le Guin, author of the Earthsea books, and Hayao Miyazaki himself. That’s probably all you need to know.

? Doctor Who: The Seeds of Doom and The Ark
Story 85 and Story 23, respectively.

? Care Bears: Four Feature Set
Four movies in one set. Surely one of them has to feature a rape-rack, right?