New on Blu: Robert Altman's SHORT CUTS, NIGHTHAWKS, and CHILD'S PLAY

Do you even care to know how "gorgeous" the 1080P or 2/4 K scan transfer looks, or how cool the extra features are? By now, you are well-versed in what transfers look like and you know what's coming with the release. You're here because you want to know the experience I have watching this/these film(s). 

New on Blu is a new column from film pundit Chase Whale, exploring studio, arthouse, underground, exploitation and cult cinema released on Blu-ray and DVD from some of the most cutting-edge independent distributors around the U.S. He talks about the movie and whether it's worth a buy, rent, or avoid. 


Paul Thomas Anderson owes a lot to cinematic pioneer Robert Altman. I guess I do, too. MAGNOLIA is my favorite film of all time, and PTA pretty much based it on SHORT CUTS. Hell, he even used a lot of the same actors. Because of PTA, Altman is one of my favorite directors, and it took me some time to figure out PTA's obsession with Altman, which makes sense with my obsession with both, equally. 

SHORT CUTS is one of Altman's best films, and I'm not saying that because of MAGNOLIA --  a lot of Altman's films are hit or miss -- but he nailed building a large cast of characters intertwining and strange coincidences so large, they are hard to believe. Ok, with that sentence, I am biased on this film because of its influence on MAGNOLIA, but it's still one of the best films in Altman's oeuvre.

It's worth the buy just to watch a young Robert Downey, Jr. elbow-punch a couch.   



There's not a many great Sylvester Stallone scenes cooler than the opening to NIGHTHAWKS. This film is one of Stallone's most criminally underseen, and I'm here to tell you it's a must-own and must-see ASAP. (It's hard to resist watching Stallone versus Rutger Hauer (HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN). 

In  NIGHTHAWKS’, a very bearded and young Stallone is Sergeant Deke DaSilva.

DaSilva is one tough cop who makes up his rules as he goes and is resistant to others except for his partner-in-justice, Sergeant Matthew Fox (Billy Dee Williams). DaSilva is also a badass who will go to great lengths to catch his criminals and has zero concern how he looks in the process.

In the first ten minutes of the opening scene, DaSilva is dressed in drag, chasing down a would-be purse snatcher. When cornering the thief, the thief pulls out a knife and DaSilva taunts him by repeating, “cut me, badass.” Stallone fights in a 1980s nurses uniform. Solid gold. 

DaSilva finally meets his match when international terrorist Wulfgar (Rutger Hauer in his first American feature film) crosses over to American soil to wreck some shit. He’s smooth, likes to party and smother beautiful women with compliments and a pillow. One of the most intense scenes in the film is when DaSilva first sees Wulgar in a popular nightclub. With The Rolling Stones’ “Brown Sugar” blaring in the background, our two rivals stare down one another for close to three minutes before. It's the longest three minutes you'll see in cinema. 

Here's that opening scene I gawked about -- it'll sell you.

BUY. (Thank you Shout! Factory for restoring and putting on Blu-ray!)

"Sorry Jack, Chucky's back."

Yeah, I know that's the tagline from CHILD'S PLAY 2, but it still works here -- Chucky hasn't been around for a while but Scream! Factory has brought the mass-murdering doll back to the small screen with their Collector's Edition of CHILD'S PLAY, stuffed with all the extra features you buy Blu-rays for. 

I grew up on CHILD'S PLAY, and you may have to. So you don't feel alone in this, I had also had a My Buddy doll, which unfortunately came out around the same time as the CHILD'S PLAY series. Chucky gave me nightmares and scared me so profoundly; I made my dead cut the head off my My Buddy to prove he wasn't alive and took the honors of tossing the head in the dumpster. (We kept the body for a while so I could make sure it wouldn't be able to to see without the head and get me.)

I digress.

Something I've mentioned before and will always bring it up: Scream Factory never fails put the competition to work with their beautiful cover art. It's 50% of the reason why you buy these films. This company is doing well on keeping the physical product alive.