All posts by alanwp

“Full Bloom: Transcending Gender” follows the courageous journey of 13 transgender and two gay actors

It’s a courageous journey, transgendering from man to woman, woman to man.
Full Bloom: Transcending Gender follows 13 transgender and two gay actors as they transform their lives through the use of monologue, dialogue and performance art while preparing for the world premiere of the play, Lovely Bouquet of Flowers: An Exploration of Non-Traditional Gender Voices.

Michael D. Brewer’s Full Bloom features behind-the-scenes, rehearsal and performance footage that are interwoven with candid personal interviews with the cast, who talk about how they deal with family, inner conflicts, discrimination, coming out, surgery, hormones and the complexities of sexual identity and orientation. By sharing their own journeys, the actors transcend gender and challenge us to move past stereotypes and see what we all have in common as human beings.
Share the journeys with the First Run Features DVD release.

Yari Film Group is playing Mind Games . . . enjoy everyone of them!

MVD Entertainment is releasing more titles from the Yari Film Group, an  independent film company founded in 2002. New titles this month:
Making its debut on physical media on Special Edition Blu-ray and DVD and digital comes Yari’s feature directorial debut Mind Games. Maxwell Caulfield stars in this taut psychological thriller about a family’s battle for survival against a cruel, scheming stranger.
Trapped in an unhappy marriage, Dana Lund (played by Edward Albert) and his wife, Rita (Shawn Weatherly) try to breathe new life into their relationship by taking a trip through northern California with their 10-year-old son Kevin (Matt Norero).

Along the way they pick up Eric (Caufield) an amiable hitchhiker who’s a psychology student. But Eric’s charm masks the fact that he is psychotic. Sensing the Lund’s vulnerability, he decides to take control of the family, then destroy it through deceit and emotional manipulation. At first the Lunds are easy prey until they realize they’ve become victims of a bizarre reign of terror. They begin to fight back in a desperate attempt to save themselves from Eric’s madness and perverse, well,  mind games.
The Special Edition Blu-ray of Mind Games includes great exclusive bonus material including a brand new feature length documentary The Making of Mind Games, featuring interviews with  Mawell Caulfield,  Norero and Weatherly, producer Mary Apick and director Yari.
Additional features include “Bob Yari: Portrait of a Producer“, a retrospective featurette on the career of the producer of the Academy Award Best Picture Winning Crash, The Illusionist and Find Me Guilty. Also included is the film’s original trailer, reversible artwork sleeve, mini-poster and a limited slipcover.



Guy Pearce, Piper Perabo and Academy Award winner J.K. Simmons  star in First Snow, an intriguing thriller about a man whose life spins out of control after psychic tells him his days are numbered. After his car breaks down in a desolate town, a slick salesman, Jimmy Starks (Pearce), visits a fortune teller (Simmons) to kill some time.

But the psychic’s ominous reading sends Jimmy’s life into a tailspin when he learns that his life will soon end, but he is safe at least, until the first snow of the season. Now, with his ultimate fate looming nearer, Jimmy becomes obsessed with revisiting his past in hopes of changing his destiny before it’s too late.


Sarah Michelle Gellar leads an all-star cast including Lee Pace and Michael Landes  in the year’s most mesmerizing thriller, Possession. Newlyweds Jess (Gellar) and Ryan (Landes) seem to have it all until a car accident renders both Ryan and his brother Roman (Pace) comatose.

But things spin even more eerily out of control when Roman awakens and tries to convince Jess that he is her husband. Beside herself with fear and grief, Jess grapples with one question: Could the man before her actually be the man she lost….or does something far more sinister await her in his arms?



Academy Award winners Kim Basinger and Forest Whitaker join Danny Devito and an all-star cast in Even Money, a compelling thriller directed by Academy Award nominee Mark Rydell that follows the lives of nine individuals, as their fates become increasingly entwined in a web of addiction and gambling, culminating at one critical moment where their lives will be lost or reclaimed.

Struggling writer Kate (Basinger) loses her family’s savings at a casino; a washed-up magician ( Devito) tries to help Carol regain her money; Clyde (Whitaker) owes so much money to his dangerous bookie (Jay Mohr) that he asks his NBA-destined nephew (Nick Cannon) to throw the game.
Also starring Kelsey Grammer, Tim Roth, Ray Liotta and Carla Gugino, Even Money is a cautionary thriller about addiction and deception that hits a jackpot of suspense.

Murders, Blood, Gore, Decapitations and Maggots: No wonder “The House By the Cemetery” can’t be sold!

We turned green with fear and shock the first time we watched The House By the Cemetery, a truly frightening horror flick released in 1984. So bloody that cuts had to be made in Europe before its release.
Let us tell you the story: A young family moves from their cramped New York City apartment to a spacious new home in New England. But this is no ordinary house in the country: the previous owner was the deranged Dr. Freudstein, whose monstrous human experiments have left a legacy of bloody mayhem. Now someone ( or something) is alive in the basement, and home sweet home is about to become a horrific hell on earth.

Catriona MacColl, Paolo Malco, Ania Pieroni, Carlo De Mejo and Dagmar Lassander star in this outrageous Italian shocker from Godfather of Gore Lucio Fulci.
Now, Blue Underground is now proud to present the flick in a new 4K restoration from the original uncut and uncensored camera negative, fully loaded with exclusive new and archival extras.
The House By The Cemetery (3-Disc Limited Edition) [Blu-ray]
Bask in . . .
Disc 1 (Blu-ray) Feature Film + Extras
NEW! Audio Commentary with Troy Howarth, author of Splintered Visions: Lucio Fulci and His Films
Deleted Scene
Theatrical Trailers
TV Spot
Poster & Still Galleries
Disc 2 (Blu-ray) Extras:
Meet the Boyles Interviews with Stars Catriona MacColl and Paolo Malco
Children of the Night Interviews with stars Giovanni Frezza and Silvia Collatina
Tales of Laura Gittleson Interview with Star Dagmar Lassander
My Time With Terror Interview with Star Carlo De Mejo
A Haunted House Story Interviews with Co-Writers Dardano Sacchetti and Elisa Briganti
To Build a Better Death Trap Interviews with Cinematographer Sergio Salvati, Special Make-Up Effects Artist Maurizio Trani, Special Effects Artist Gino De Rossi, and Actor Giovanni De Nava
NEW!House Quake Interview with Co-Writer Giorgio Mariuzzo
NEW! Catriona MacColl Q&A
NEW! Calling Dr. Freudstein Interview with Stephen Thrower, Author of Beyond Terror: The Films of Lucio Fulci
Disc 3 (CD): Original Motion Picture Soundtrack by Walter Rizzati
BONUS! Collectible Booklet with new essay by Michael Gingold

Harry Nilsson’s “The Point” is brilliantly restored and released on DVD and Blu-Ray. Get the point?

We are often on overload.
And that’s a good thing.
Especially when MVD Entertainment Group announces new DVD and Blu-Ray releases. They are titles movie mavens have wanted to (finally) be released; even re-released since the group’s various labels offer truly wonderous titles, almost always in new high definition prints.
Can we hear a bravo?
One gem:
The Point! makes its HD debut on both Blu-ray and HD Digital in an Ultimate Edition. In late ’70, Grammy-winning singer/songwriter Harry Nilsson released his groundbreaking album, “The Point!”, a thematically brilliant, densely orchestrated concept album packed with more hooks than a meat locker. According to Nilsson himself: “I looked at the trees and realized all the leaves came to points and even the branches came to points. I thought, ‘Oh! Everything has a point, and even if it doesn’t, there’s a point to it.'”
Produced in ’70, the animated film version of The Point! first aired February 2, 1971, as an ABC Movie of the Week. The film was directed by Oscar-winner Fred Wolf and produced by Murakami-Wolf Films in association with Nilsson House Music. Complete with story and songs written by Nilsson and narration by Ringo Starr, The Point! is a timeless enchanting fable for the whole family to enjoy!
Years ago there was a place called The Land of the Point, because everything in The Land of the Point had one: the barns, the houses, the cars, everything-–even the people. Everyone, that is, except Oblio (played by Brady Bunch alum Mike Lookinland) who was born round-headed. Since he had no point, Oblio—along with his trusty dog, Arrow—was banished to the Pointless Forest. Join them to see what wonders await these two intrepid travelers as they make their way on their amazing, song-filled journey of discovery.!
With the entire re-release endeavor overseen by Lee Blackman for the Nilsson Estate and MVD Rewind Collection’s Eric D. Wilkinson, the project proved to be a challenging process.
According to Wilkinson, “We searched everywhere but came up empty-handed in regard to locating the original negative elements. Thanks to the generosity of collector Kier-La Janisse, who provided a rare 16mm print, we oversaw a 2K HD scan, which included shot-by-shot color-grading to reduce fade and improve consistency. Considering the condition of the elements we had – while a complete restoration proved to be unfeasible – the end result is the best the film has ever looked and we are proud to give fans and collectors the best edition on disc and digital that has ever been created for this classic animated film.”
The Point! Ultimate Edition Blu-ray is packed with hours of bonus material that includes not only all of the previously available bonus featurettes, but also brand new material produced exclusively for this release by Kier-La Janisse and Lee Blackman, including new interviews with voice-over cast member Mike Lookinland; screenwriter Norm Lenzer; Harry Nilsson’s son Kiefo Nilsson and composer/producer Bobby Halvorson; and Nilsson biographer Alyn Shipton, whose featurette contains mini-interviews with several people familiar with Harry Nilsson’s work on film.
Get the point?

Sonny and Cher share 10 memorable and magical episodes from their TV show. Yep, they still got it babe

Yes, the beat goes on.
And on.
And on.
Sonny and Cher share great memories, great music and great guest stars when they take the spotlight on I Got You Babe: The Best of Sonny & Cher (Time Life). The five-disc set is packed with never-before-released episodes of their ’70s variety TV show. And the added bonus–an interview with Cher recalling those sunny days—is most welcome!
When Salvatore “Sonny” Bono and Cherilyn “Cher” Sarkisian came together it was undeniably magical. America first knew them as the duo behind the classic hit “I Got You Babe,” and their popularity exploded with the ’70s smash variety show The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour. The perfect match on stage and off, millions of fans tuned in each week to watch the sparks fly and see what Bob Mackie rags Cher was (or wasn’t!) wearing and the show quickly became essential viewing.
The TV gig was a gift from heaven . . . or at least CBS entertainment chief Fred Silverman, who “discovered” them performing in nightclubs and decided they had great potential for a weekly variety series. The  Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour premiered on August 1, 1971 as a summer replacement, but quickly reached the top 20, becoming a Wednesday night draw for the CBS and cementing Sonny and Cher as one of Hollywood’s most beloved couples.
The DVD set contains 10 hilarious, never-before-released episodes beginning, bringing  by bringing TV viewers back to the beginning with the pilot episode,. Oh! The classic sketches are still just naughty enough for nighttime! And tune in for an incredible line-up of guest stars including Dick Clark, Jerry Lewis, Jim Nabors, Joe Namath, The Righteous Brothers, Dinah Shore, Carroll O’Connor, Art Carney, Chuck Berry and The Supremes.

I Got You Babe: The Best of Sonny & Cher also features exclusive extras including:
Sonny & Cher’s pilot, an appearance on The Barbara McNair Show (Original Air Date: February 15, 1970)
Jerry Blavat’s 1970 interview of the duo on Jerry’s Place featuring an impromptu performance of “I Got You Babe”
Interviews with Frankie Avalon, producers Allan Blye and Chris Bearde and Cher herself!

The meat to Jamie Oliver’s success? Great food, great fun, great new book, “Ultimate Veg”

The meat of Jamie Oliver’s success? He’s friendly, fastidious and one helluva nice guy.

And a hot damn! chef.

Oliver—one of the bestselling cookbook authors of all time—is back with his first-ever all vegetable, plant-powered cookbook. With inspiration from all over the world, Ultimate Veg: Easy & Delicious Meals for Everyone (Flatiron Books, $35) shows how easy and delicious it is to add more vegetables into your cooking whether
you’re looking to embrace a meat-free day or two each week or live a vegetarian lifestyle. From simple suppers to dinner-party worthy stunners, Oliver packs the book with flavor combinations that will inspire everyone to get cooking.

From chapters from One-Pan Wonders, Traybakes and Curries & Stews to Pasta, Salads, Burgers & Fritters and everything in between, Jamie includes recipes that everyone will want to cook and eat, plus tips for easy weeknight meals.

Our Top Three faves:

♥ GREENS MAC ‘N’ CHEESE with leek, broccoli & spinach and a toasted almond topping
VEGGIE PAD THAI, crispy fried eggs, special tamarind & tofu sauce and peanut sprinkle
♥ SUPER SPINACH PANCAKES with avocado, tomato and cottage cheese

As Oliver says: “It’s all about celebrating really good, tasty food that just happens to be meat-free.”

Find Oliver recipes and videos on jamieoliver.com

Bela Lugosi + Edgar Allan Poe + creepy pre-Code condition + Arlene Francis =”Murders In The Rue Morgue”

What’s her line?
Arlene Francis may be most famous for her years-long stint on What’s My Line?, but she has a teeny (and uncredited) part as a “streetwalker” in the creepy 1932 American pre-Code horror flick. Based on the story by Edgar Allan Poe, Murders In The Rue Morgue is a haunting atmospheric thriller heavily influenced by the German Expressionist classic, The Cabinet Of Dr. Caligari, and features Bela Lugosi in one of his most sinister roles.

Bela and Arlene

A deranged scientist, Dr. Mirakle (Lugosi), searches Paris for a “prospective bride” for his pet gorilla. Inviting young ladies to his laboratory, he injects his victims with gorilla blood and then disposes of their ravaged bodies through a trapdoor. Mirakle finally settles on a beautiful woman to be the mate of the gorilla, kidnapping her from her fiancé, Pierre Dupin.

Murders In The Rue Morgue

But just as the young lady is about to be sacrificed in the name of unholy science, a frantic Dupin locates his betrothed and tries to rescue her from Mirakle’s unspeakable evolutionary experiments.

Scream Factory, the deranged sister of Shout factory!, has released a crisp, remastered Blu-ray of the film. Great cover art, too!

Bonuses include new audio commentary by authors/film historians Gregory William Mank and Gary D. Rhodes; the flick’s theatrical trailer and a stills gallery.

February is a month of love, and what better than binge watching PBS programs with Russell Stover?

February is a month of love, and what better to love than binge watching PBS programs with an armful of chocolates?

Enjoy!

MASTERPIECE: Sanditon
Andrew Davies, Britain’s national treasure, has given Jane Austen fans what they have been waiting over a century for: the completion of Austen’s last piece of work, unfinished due to her death in 1817. Now Davies takes the first 11 beautifully crafted chapters of the final Austen masterpiece and creates an epic drama for all to enjoy. The lavish adaptation stars Rose Williams as Austen’s lively, but levelheaded heroine Charlotte Heywood and Theo James as the humorous, charming (and slightly wild) Sidney Parker.

Charlotte observes hypochondria, avarice and attempted seduction run amok. Lady Denham is playing matchmaker for her destitute nephew, Sir Edward, who is determined to seduce Lady Denham’s ward, Clara and become the primary heir to his aunt’s estate. Then, the arrival of wealthy, mixed-race heiress Miss Lambe, under the guardianship of Tom’s upright brother Sidney, adds another interesting complication.


MASTERPIECE: Howards End
Written by Kenneth Lonergan, comes the four episode adaptation of E.M. Forster’s, Howards End. Starring Matthew Macfadyen as Henry Wilcox, Philippa Coulthard as Helen Schlegel, Julia Ormond as Mrs. Wilcox, Hayley Atwell as Margaret Schlegel and Tracey Ullman as Aunt Juley,

this is a fresh take on the story of two independent and unconventional sisters and the men in their lives seeking love and meaning as they navigate an ever-changing world. Also starring Joseph Quinn, Rosalind Eleazar and Alex Lawther.


American Experience: McCarthy
The legacy of Joseph McCarthy’s relentless search for anyone he deemed a communist or enemy of the state will forever be shrouded in infamy. The Wisconsin Senator’s crusade is now the centerpiece of any conversation involving the government’s role in decency, democracy and ethical conduct. This witch hunt, completely free of restraint or oversight, led to the trials and imprisonment of many celebrities, Americans and immigrants.

This program details the rise of McCarthy’s political life which led to his belief that there was a great conspiracy threatening America, culminating in a chilling campaign full of groundless accusations, bullying intimidation, grandiose showmanship, cruel victimization and a web of lies to keep public opinion on their side.


NOVA: Decoding da Vinci
On the 500th anniversary of Leonardo’s death, with guidance from historian Walter Isaacson, NOVA pulls back the curtain to investigate what led to da Vinci’s ahead of his time, legendary successes.

The program examines how Leonardo’s scientific studies, from dissecting humans to studying optics, led to a host of brilliant inventions, like hang gliders, armored tanks, parachutes and many others. Decoding da Vinci further explains how this deep scientific curiosity was behind the most captivating work of art in history, The Mona Lisa. Viewers now have the chance to delve deep into Leonardo da Vinci’s Renaissance genius.


NOVA: The Violence Paradox
Violence is ubiquitous in our every day lives. We see it in the news, in movies, on TV and video games so why do some experts say that violence is decreasing and that we’re living in the most peaceful time in history? Can this actually be true?

The Violence Paradox addresses these questions and explores the intricacies of how violence permeates our life, psychology and every day thoughts and actions. The program takes us through time and the human mind to investigate what impacts the violence rates and what people are doing now to reduce violence in the world.


NOVA: Animal Espionage
Studying animals that are incredibly hard to approach or observe without them being aware has always been a constant struggle for wildlife experts. Though now, with the technological advancements of the camera industry, experts and viewers are able to get an intimate view of these species behind closed doors during their everyday lives. Camera traps and drones, completely hidden from the animal’s view, are allowing for revolutionary findings in wildlife biology, allowing viewers to get closer than ever before to animals like whales, tigers and elusive giant armadillos.

NOVA: Animal Espionage DVDThe recordings featured on this program capture everything from the unexpected to the comical, and these technologies are giving wildlife analysts insights that could ultimately help them fight extinction and habitat loss.

Mill Creek Entertainment offers exceptional box sets of favorite and funny TV series

Curious people may meander down to the old mill stream, but whenever we want something special to do, we head to Mill Creek. Here is where we (and you) will find with Entertainment with a capital E.

We stumbled upon two nifty complete series box sets whose content Mill Creek licensed (legally, of course).  Great picture quality and sound. And a hell of a lot cheaper than the same sets issued by the original studio.

Once upon a time… there were three girls who went to work for Charles Townsend, a mysterious man they never got to see, at his Beverly Hills detective agency. And they became the sexiest private eyes to ever grace TV.

Welcome to Charlie’s Angels: The Complete Series, a 20-disc Blu-ray gem. Enjoy every episode of high-kicking action, glamour, guns, bikinis and hair. Each is packed with dangerous intrigue in the Angels’ world of money, mystery and murder. And the guest stars?

Then there’s, the 12-time Emmy winning Mad About You that explores the romantic ups and downs of an endearingly neurotic couple, Paul and Jamie Buchman, as they cope with marriage, mood swings, love and life. Helen Hunt and Paul Reiser still make us laugh . . . again and again.

Celebrity guests include such familiar faces as Lisa Kudrow, Carl Reiner, Sid Caesar, Estelle Getty, Bruce Willis, Hank Azaria and Cyndi Lauper. The 14-disc set includes a host of bonus features including commentaries, featurettes and a blooper reel.

Suzanne Somers offers “A New Way to Age”

We have always loved Suzanne Somers.

Every time we chat with her, she has something profound to say.
Witness: “Gay men love me. And why not?  I get what that experience is. I think children of alcoholics are wounded birds, and I think the gay experience is very wounding. I have always had great relationships with my gay friends, and I think that’s because we’re simpatico. We get one another. I know the wounding; I know how to find my way through. So do they. I don’t know what it is, but lesbians don’t make passes at me. Maybe I’m too femme?”

With her new book, A New Way to Age: The Most Cutting-Edge Advances in Antiaging (Gallery Books, $28), Somers cuts right to the heart of how most of us are far too comfortable with the present paradigm of aging, which normalizes pills, nursing homes and “the big three”: heart disease, cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.

But you don’t have to accept this.

She presents a “new” way to grow older—with vibrancy, freedom, confidence and a rockin’ libido.  The book is a health bible that explains how to stop aging like your parents and embrace cutting edge techniques such as:
♥ Balancing nutritional and mineral deficiencies
♥ Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy
♥ Detoxifying your gut for weight loss
♥ Pain management with non-THC CBD instead of harmful opioids
♥ Cell rejuvenation with senolytics and NAD supplementation
♥ Natural, nondrug intimacy enhancers
♥ Stem cell treatments for healing and revitalizing more body parts

In A New Way to Age, Somers interviews some of the foremost doctors in the field of antiaging medicine. Reading these interviews makes you feel like you are in the office of a top doctor. Suzanne
asks the questions you may be afraid to ask or not have the opportunity to. They discuss topics including stress, hormone enhancement, yoga, statins, toxins and the gut, EECP treatment, the heart and how to keep it from breaking, stem cell treatment, natural pain treatment, energy medicine and the healing power of touch.

As Suzanne writes, “The information throughout this book is meant
to be provocative in order to stimulate interest in the newest possibilities. These amazing professionals gave me their best so I could pass it along to you.”

At the end of the book, Suzanne includes appendices which include a comprehensive list of tests you may want to do and how to obtain them; doctor contact information for all the doctors interviewed or
referenced in the book; and information about supplements and supplementation.

With this nook, the 73-year-old takes things a step further to present a revolutionary philosophy for a longer and better-quality
life—in the form of easy-to-understand lessons and doctor interviews that will make you feel like you’ve
just had the best checkup of your life.