By and large, my fellow genre-film fans are an inexplicably fickle lot. What I mean to say is—it would be difficult to explain just how often I find myself locked in a “to the death style” so-called debate with a fanboy intent on convincing me that, despite a preponderance of evidence to the contrary, some steaming heap of ridiculously derivative horse-drop like Underworld was somehow worth its weight in silver (you all know film is basically made-up of bits of silver, right) because it wasn’t quite as unforgivably god-awful as say Wes Craven Presents: They. . . while simultaneously arguing that a darkly-cool offering like Equilibrium plain sucked because it compares unfavorably to the the incredible visionary classic that was Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner. I’m mentioning that rather aggravating phenomena only because today’s first news item concerns a magnificently groundbreaking film that was both ignored by theatrical audiences and widely criticized by well . . . critics for not being as much of once-in-a-lifetime action/adventure masterpiece as Raiders Of The Lost Ark. (a measuring stick that would tend to exclude just about every other action/adventure film ever made from a yes vote as far as I can tell) The news that I am of course referring to, is the fact that the nice folks over at Paramount Home Video have finally leaked some early details on the imminent (as in February 1st, 2005) release of Jude Law, Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina “sexy even in an eye-patch” Jolie’s Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow -- which was, in case you haven’t already guessed, absolutely my favorite film from last fall. It will reportedly be available in both anamorphic widescreen and full screen versions featuring English Dolby Digital 5.1 audio, at least two audio commentaries, five behind the scenes featurettes, a gag reel, a selection of deleted scenes and the original six-minute demo that landed Kerry Conran his director’s chair.

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Having apparently decided that no will notice that no-one will notice its though-line’s subject (a cuddly terrorist) Lions Gate has announced a new collector's edition of Stephen Rea, Jaye Davidson, Forest Whitaker, Miranda Richardson’s exceptional and once notorious modern classic The Crying Game. The film will be presented in remastered anamorphic widescreen with English Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS tracks, and disc extras are set to include audio commentary from director Neil Jordan and an alternate ending, a featurette examining the war in Northern Ireland as seen through the eyes of a Catholic and a Protestant and a making-of The Crying Game featurette. Said gender-confusion will be hitting the streets anew on January 25th, 2005 with a retail price of ‘round about $19.99 attached.

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In other news, as if purposefully seeking to ruin my freakin’ day, Warner Bros has announced that they’ll releasing Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston's ridiculously-over-played-pop-song-spawning mediocrity as The Bodyguard: Special Edition just in time for a Valentine's Day that frankly deserves much, much, better. At any rate the film will be presented in a new 1.85:1 anamorphic aidescreen transfer with English DD5.1 Surround, French Dolby Surround and English, French and Spanish subtitles.

Disc Extra Will Include:

• New making-of documentary Memories of The Bodyguard with the stars and filmmakers

• I Will Always Love You Whitney Houston music video

• Theatrical trailer

If you’re still interested, the aforementioned single-disc “special edition” will be available for use as a hapless-spouse-torturer as of February 1st, 2005 for something like $19.99.

Meanwhile, the guys and gals over at Universal Home Entertainment have announced that they’ll be relasing an Orgazmo: Special Edition on March 29th, 2005. Said special edition of will reportedly include an unrated cut of the movie along with three commentaries, a “drunken commentary” with a special appearance by Kevin Smith, over an hour of deleted scenes and outtakes, a “Book of Orgazmo” documentary and perhaps more. You’ll be shelling out around $19.99 for the privilege if you just have to.

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And lastly, The Evil Empire . . . I mean . . . Fox Home Entertainment has announced that Jimmy Fallon and Queen Latifah’s “nowhere near the vicinity of even mildly amusing” buddy-caper flick Taxi will be available to own from the February 15th, 2005(no, not even the threat of having to sit through it again could for me to refer to it as a “comedy”) The disc will reportedly arrive carrying both 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen and 1.33:1 full frame presentations with English Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Surround and French Dolby Surround Sound. Disc extras will include audio commentary from “director” Tim Story and Jimmy Fallon, deleted scenes, five featurettes entitled: The Meter's Runnin', Lights, Camera, Blue Screen, Tour Guide: Jimmy Fallon, Reel Comedy: Taxi and Sexy Bankrobber Piece as well as (gods forgive them) an extended version of the film. Though it really shouldn’t set anyone back somewhere in the region of $29.99, it apparently will be doing that exactly if you let it.

Brian B.