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A Look at the Iconic Golden Arches with THE FOUNDER

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Jeri Jacquin

Today on Bluray/DVD and Digital HD from director John Lee Hancock, the Weinstein Company and Anchor Bay Entertainment is the story behind McDonald’s with THE FOUNDER.

It is 1954 and Ray Kroc (Michael Keaton) is a man who is always on the move with his supply business. Working for Prince Castle who made five-spindle shake makers, he sold them one at a time to restaurants. He was surprised to receive a telephone call from Dick McDonald (Nick Offerman) ordering several of the machines.

Living with wife Ethel (Laura Dern) in a beautiful home in Arlington Heights, Illinois, Kroc is always looking for the next big thing to keep their lifestyle. Always on the road, he becomes more and more irritated with the drive-in burger experience.

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Still intrigued by the telephone call for more than one of the machines, Kroc goes to see what restaurant needs more than one! He arrives in San Bernardino, California to see something stunning. People lining up to get a McDonald’s hamburger, fries and a coke, Kroc loves the food.

He introduces himself to Dick and Mac McDonald (John Carroll Lynch) and they give him a tour of their hamburger assembly line process, quality produce and service. Kroc knows that this is a business he wants to be part of and convinces the brothers to go into partnership with Kroc franchising out to others.

Rollie Smith (Patrick Wilson) and wife Joan (Linda Cardellini) show interest in the business and he shows interest in Joan. Finding a boom in the franchising of McDonald’s, Kroc is constantly being stopped by the brothers in making any changes per their contract. If that isn’t enough, Ethel is alone more than with her husband.

Kroc wants to make McDonald’s iconic and without the brothers so with the help of Harry Sonneborn (B.J. Novak). His new company, Franchise Realty Corporation, begins the takeover of land that any McDonald’s is on. Changing the name to The McDonald’s Corporation, he buys out the brothers which includes the name and takes a new wife.

McDonald’s is now a part of the American landscape!

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Keaton as Kroc is stunning in this role. He has this amazing ability to hook me into watching every character he has ever portrayed and the role of Kroc is no exception. I love the way he turns a phrase and gives this character charm – even when I really didn’t want to like Kroc.

Offerman as Nick plays a man who is clear about his business goals. Knowing that the idea of McDonald’s was something special, he does try his damnedest to keep Kroc in line. It’s when things get out of control that Offerman gives us a look at a man who believed in something and someone only to be taken advantage of. Lynch as brother Mac is the brother who absolutely breaks my heart. He wants to believe that expanding would mean so much and was hit the hardest when it turned on them both. Lynch is one of my favorite actors because he can play both the villain and an endearing character and make it look easy.

Dern as Ethel is a woman who is the perfect housewife taking care of Ray when he is home. Supporting every endeavor he takes on means she also comes in second in every endeavor he takes on. Cardellini as Joan is a subtle character who is beautiful, talented, smart and believes in Kroc.

Wilson as Rollie wants to be part of the McDonald’s franchise and offers suggestions. Having his own restaurant, Rollie believes he has a lot to offer Kroc. Novak as Sonneborn is the key to changing everything in the initial deal with the McDonald brothers and it is brilliant actually. Novak is the level headed character in the film while everyone else is shouting and outraged.

Other cast includes Justin Brooke as Fred Turner, Kate Kneeland as June Martino, Griff Furst as Jim Zien, Wilbur Fitzgerald as Jerry Cullen, David de Vriest as Jack Horford, Andrew Benator as Leonard Rosenblatt, and Cara Mantella as Myra Rosenblatt.

The Weinstein Company is the film studio founded by Bob and Harvey Weinstein founded in 1979. Since 2005, TWC has released such films as VICKY CRISTINA BARCELONA, THE READER, INGLORIOUS BASTERDS, THE KING’S SPEECH, THE ARTIST, DJANGO UNCHAINED and THE HATEFUL EIGHT. The Weinstein’s have received 341 Oscar nominations and won 81 Academy Awards.

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Anchor Bay brings amazing entertainment to those extending their media library and is also celebrating their 20th Anniversary. From theatrical to home release, Anchor Bay brings STARZ Original series, AMC Network series, The Weinstein Company, Radius, children’s entertainment, fitness, and sports to fans. To discover more of what Anchor Bay Entertainment has to offer, please visit www.anchorbayent.com.

THE FOUNDER is such an interesting look at a place known all over the world. I remember my first McDonald’s visit when I was five when the outside was red and white with the big arches on either side of the building.

The one thing that I and others never thought about was the story behind those golden arches. This film is a double edge sword in that it’s a history I want to know but one that I’m surprised to learn. The McDonald brothers are portrayed as two men who have a grand idea and it works for them in a fantastic way.

That is until Ray Kroc comes in and although I understand his excitement, I was very upset in a way about how he went about it all. Does that mean I’ll never eat a McDonald’s French fry ever again – hardly.

Keaton puts his stamp on this role and along with Offerman and Lynch, THE FOUNDER is a film I highly recommend. The cinematography, costumes and sets are amazing and brought me back to that era with ease. This is a story that is well done by writer Robert D. Siegel who is also known for the 2008 film THE WRESTLER.

The Bluray includes the Special Features of a Behind-the-Scenes Gallery Featurette and Press Conferences. The Digital HD allows viewing from your television, computer, tablet and Smartphone.

In the end – risk taker, rule breaker and game changer!

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1995 Animated GHOST IN THE SHELL is Stellar Viewing on Bluray

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Jeri Jacquin

This week on Bluray & DVD with Limited Steelbook Packaging and Mondo artwork from Anchor Bay Entertainment and director Mamoru Oshii is the amazing story of GHOST IN THE SHELL.

In an electronic network, it is the year 2029 in New Port City and humanity has now come to live in cybernetic bodies. These shells they live in contain their consciousness but along with that are special abilities.

Major Motoko Kusanagi (voiced by Mimi Woods) is one such cybernetic who is also a government agent on the hunt for he Puppet Master. This Puppet Master has obtained the ability to get inside human hosts through a computer virus. Given the assignment, she brings in Section 9 and they are immediately hit strong by the Puppet Master.

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Calling in another squad, Section 6, they work to discover out how bring the Puppet Master (Tom Wyner) out into the open. Motoko dives deep into the Puppet Master and discover that Project 2501 exists and that he has been looking for Motoko all this time.

Her rescuer Batou (Richard Epcar) tries to stop the conversation between Motoko and the Puppet Master but instead the Puppet Master ghost-hacks him Knowing that there are orders for Section 6 to destroy him, it is only a matter of time before they cover up Project 250l.

What Motoko wants is more answers and when the Puppet Master tells her everything, it becomes clear that when Section 6 attacks, Batou will do what is necessary to save her.

A merge is coming and they all better be prepared!

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Each of these characters has something different to bring to the storyline of a cybernetic female who is powerful and strong. More importantly, the character of Motoko was my first experience with a strong female anime and had me so interested that I continued looking for the same thing for years.

Other voice cast includes Christopher Joyce as Togusa, William Knight as Chief Aramaki, Michael Sorich as Ishikawa, and Simon Prescott as Chief Nakamura.

Anchor Bay brings amazing entertainment to those extending their media library and is also celebrating their 20th Anniversary. From theatrical to home release, Anchor Bay brings STARZ Original series, AMC Network series, The Weinstein Company, Radius, children’s entertainment, fitness, and sports to fans. To discover more of what Anchor Bay Entertainment has to offer, please visit www.anchorbayent.com.

I love the animation with its rich detail knowing that this story wouldn’t have worked without it. The intensity is there along with characters that are not always what they appear to be.

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Director Mamoru Oshii has taken the anime experience to a futuristic level that is stellar to the imagination. Released in 1995 the film made its way from Japan to the United States and the rest of Europe. Five years later Oshii would return for GHOST IN THE SHELL: Innocence.

GHOST IN THE SHELL comes in an amazing Steelbook with artwork from Mondo that makes it even more exciting to own capturing the feel of an incredible story. Also included in the Steelbook Bluray & DVD is the Digital HD Ultraviolet code that allows viewing of GHOST IN THE SHELL from anywhere.

It is time to revisit an iconic and classic story done in vivid and brilliant animation!

In the end – question human existence!

GHOST IN THE SHELL is Coming to Bluray in Steelbook!

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Jeri Jacquin

Anchor Bay Entertainment is going to blow us all away as the groundbreaking anime film GHOST IN THE SHELL comes to Bluray in March of 2017. Encased in a limited-edition Mondo key art collectible Steelbook packaging, it is a way to continue the celebration that began in 2014 with the 25th anniversary of the original Manga.

The story surrounds Major Motoko Kusanagi, a cybernetic agent working with the Internal Bureau of Investigations looking for The Puppet Master. Now a threatening computer virus has come out of the box and into human hosts. Agents from Section 9 along with Maj. Kusanagi have no time to capture the entity before the take over is complete.

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GHOST IN THE SHELL is directed by the legendary anime director Mamoru Oshii in this award-winning, cyber-tech thriller. Questioning human existence in the information age, this film is one of the leading Japanese animation films of all time.

The film brought a new dimension of anime in the 1990’s merging traditional animation with computer graphic imagery. This brings stunning sci-fi animation along with artistic expression with a unique story line. Director Oshii based the film experience on the comic by Masamune Shirow.

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GHOST IN THE SHELL: Stand Alone Complex Season 1 and 2 were previously only available on DVD but now for the first time will arrive on Bluray! GHOST IN THE SHELL on Bluray can be yours from Anchor Bay Entertainment on March 14, 2017!

Anchor Bay brings amazing entertainment to those extending their media library and is also celebrating their 20th Anniversary. From theatrical to home release, Anchor Bay brings STARZ Original series, AMC Network series, The Weinstein Company, Radius, children’s entertainment, fitness, and sports to fans. To discover more of what Anchor Bay Entertainment has to offer, please visit www.anchorbayent.com.

FEAR THE WALKING DEAD: The Complete Second Season Brings Another Look at the Zombie Beginnings!

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Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray and Digital HD December 13th from Anchor Bay Entertainment is the mega-walker hit FEAR THE WALKING DEAD: The Complete Second Season.

The group finds themselves on the boat Abigail headed down to San Diego. Madison (Kim Dickens) and Travis (Cliff Curtis) are trying to keep everyone together including Chris (Lorenzo Henrie), Daniel (Ruben Blades), Ofelia (Mercedes Mason), Nick (Frank Dillane) and Alicia (Alycia Carey). But everyone seems to be working against each other as Strand (Colman Domingo) takes on the role of leader. When Chris and Nick take a jump off the boat it is the worst time as another boat approaches.

Trying to get away they make it to an island Travis meets a family that tells him San Diego is no better off than anyplace else as the military has burned it to the ground. When suspicions about Strand reach their peak, it is discovered that he has plans to head to Mexico, Baja to be exact. Strand tells them all that where he is going has supplies and safety.

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Needing supplies now, a group goes to shore to salvage from a plane on the beach. They discover two survivors and when walkers come for them they get back to the boat. Strand isn’t happy with the two new passengers and demands they be put on a raft away from the boat.

In Mexico it is Nick who goes ashore looking for Strand’s people but the group can no longer escape the pirates that want their boat. Now on the ground they must get to Strand’s compound and after a night of shooting leader Celia wants them all to leave. Chris runs with Travis following and after a confrontation with his mother, Nick takes off as well.

When Travis tells Nick that he and Chris aren’t coming back, the young man tries to return but ends up in the middle of a pack of wolves and walkers. Wounded, Nick wanders until he is found by Luciana (Danay Garcia) who ignores him but that doesn’t last when he walks his way into their compound.

Taken to the community leader Alejandro (Paul Calderson), Nick hears the stories of the community that are believed by all including Luciana. He also learns about a ‘store’ where supply and demand are all about what you bring for trading.

Madison, Strand, Alicia and Ofelia try to get back to the boat onto to discover it is gone. Up on a ridge is a hotel where the group discover showers, beds, drink and walkers. Deciding they need to rest, everyone gets cleaned up while Strand and Madison tie one on at the hotel bar.

Travis and Chris are on the road and find a farmhouse where they hope to find food. When a group pull up in a pickup, Travis immediately doesn’t trust them. When the farmer comes out to protect his land, Chris takes matters in his own hands to the horror of is on-looking father.

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With walkers everywhere, Alicia comes up with a plan and Madison becomes the bait to lead them away. Ofelia goes off on her own heading back to the United States border. Madison and Elena need to begin trading and heads to Alejandro warehouse. While she is there Madison realizes that talk she is hearing is about Nick!

Heading back to the hotel, it is decided to close the hotel and lock the gates. Madison decides to break a rule and the consequences bring other survivors to the hotel and in the middle of the pack is Travis.

Marco (Alejandro Edda), leader of the warehouse, decides that he wants the community for his own and no matter how much Nick tries to talk him down, he refuses to listen. Going back to Alejandro, he tries to talk the community into leaving and sets a trap for Marco and his gang.

Now Nick and Luciana begin walking towards the border with the survivors not knowing that Ofelia has reached there as well. Strand is upset with Madison for letting Travis into their group and is told he has to leave. After Alicia’s act to save Travis, all three get into a car and leave the hotel and decide to look for Nick.

Discovering the community he was in is gone; they find Alejandro who tells them Nick is headed for the border. At the border Nick and Luciana cross and see a helicopter but aren’t aware that a group has surrounded them capturing Nick and Luciana!

Dickens as Madison has her motherly enabling cut to the quick this season. When each of the kids makes their own decisions, it isn’t about saving them as about accepting that there is nothing she can do to stop them. Alicia stays behind and now Madison focuses all her energy on keeping her alive.

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Curtis as Travis is another enabler who hasn’t quite cut the cord from his son Chris but boy does that kid make it eventually easy. Hoping their time together will bond them to survive together and return to Madison, in one moment it all falls apart and he is now in the same boat as his wife.

Dillane as Frank does a little growing up this season walking away from his family. Discovering the community it is his chance to actually help without anyone knowing of his family failures. Sister Alicia played by Carey is also finding her own place in the world making decisions that are actually quite helpful. The highlight is her plan to lead the dead to become ocean bobble heads!

Henrie as Chris has an attitude stuck up his teenage attitude and walking away puts everyone in danger. Believing he knows more about what’s right in this new world than father Travis, he has no problem proving it to the devastation of his father.

Mason as Ofelia is a tough customer who isn’t going to give in just because strangers show up at the hotel. Garcia as Luciana is also another tough woman who just wants to do what’s right for the community and follows Alejandro almost blindly. Calderson as Alejandro wants what’s best for his community and the dark secret he hides is a little selfish to my way of thinking. Bad dude Marco played by Edda doesn’t see what’s coming because, as we all know, greed blinds.

Domingo as Strand shows a more humane side once they reach the hotel. He begins to see Madison more as a friend rather than a hindrance and one night of drinking loosens his story. When Madison decides to leave there is a sense of betrayal but with Strand you never quite know what he is feeling – very poker face!

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AMC has brought itself to the forefront of cable television in the past few years. With such series as Mad Men, Hell on Wheels, and Breaking Bad, AMC has also blown television away with the series The Walking Dead and now, Fear the Walking Dead.

Anchor Bay brings amazing entertainment to those extending their media library and is also celebrating their 20th Anniversary. From theatrical to home release, Anchor Bay brings STARZ Original series, AMC Network series, The Weinstein Company, Radius, children’s entertainment, fitness, and sports to fans. To discover more of what Anchor Bay Entertainment has to offer, please visit www.anchorbayent.com.

FEAR THE WALKING DEAD: The Complete Second Season takes the storyline into a chaotic space where the group that wanted to stick together has become split apart. It is interesting to watch the dynamics of the characters finally become worn out and the kids wanting to run as far away from adults as they can.

The parental side of me yelled ‘let ‘em run and see how far they get’ and then sat back the rest of the season to discover how they would fair in the new world. It became all to quickly noticeable that maybe I should have been worried about the adults!

It seems the group has found itself among some of the most nasty undesirables. The hotel has its usual dead-beat non-paying flesh rotten guests, the warehouse has abusive robbers, the road has kill-happy border seekers and a community has a leader who isn’t exactly truthful.

Finding their way back to each other is going to bring about a whole new set of problems heading back to the U.S. border where everything they have experienced might be a piece of cake in comparison!

What do you expect when the world has turned on itself right?

The Bluray includes all 648 minutes of storytelling of characters facing the unknown and walkers! All 15 episodes are included as well as the Bonus Features of Audio Commentaries, Deleted Scenes, Flight 462 Webisodes, Q&A with Cast and Creative Team from PaleyFest LA 2016, Inside ‘Fear the Walking Dead’ and The Making of ‘Fear the Walking Dead’.

In the end – the post apocalyptic world is tearing them apart!

Julian Fellowes Presents DOCTOR THORNE on DVD

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Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Digital HD and DVD this October from Anchor Bay Entertainment and The Weinstein Company is the absolutely stunning return of an era we have come to love with Julian Fellowes Presents DOCTOR THORNE.

Dr. Thorne (Tom Hollander) is an honorable man who is raising his niece Mary (Stefanie Martini). She played with the children living at Greshamsbury Park estate owned by the Gresham family.

Now young adults, Mary and Frank Gresham (Harry Richardson) have become closer than his mother Lady Arabella (Rebecca Front) would like. The family has been plagued with financial problems and continue to borrow from Sir Roger Scatcherd (Ian McShane). Lady Arabella and husband Frank Snr. (Richard McCabe) have no choice but to make sure their children marry into wealth.

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This means Frank and Mary can not be together since the young woman has no money of her own. Instead, Lady Arabella does her best to push her son toward wealthy oil heiress Miss Dunstable (Alison Brie) and her daughter Beatrice towards the politically motivated Mr. Moffatt (Danny Kirrane).

Both Frank and Beatrice are beyond themselves with unhappiness at their mothers meddling making their lives about money. Frank Snr. once again asks a very ill Sir Richard for money which gives him more of a stake in the estate. As things get worse for Sir Richard, secrets about Mary’s birth come to the forefront. Waiting in the wings is the Scatcherd’s only son Louis (Edward Franklin).

As Mary comes to the aid of Lady Scatcherd (Janine Duvitski), Louis finds himself infatuated with Mary and looking forward to inheriting wealth. When Mary makes it clear that her feelings still reside with Frank, Louis begins down a destructive path that puts the Gresham’s living situation in jeopardy.

Dr. Thorne knows that the time is coming soon where all must be revealed but only if it brings Mary the happiness she deserves!

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Hollander as Dr. Thorne is such an elegant character and tries with such patience to do what is right by all. The problem with that is he forgets his own happiness in the middle of everyone else’s chaos. I have to say that after his recent stint on the series NIGHT MANAGER, there should never be any doubt that he is an actor in every sense of the word. I loved both these characters because they are absolutely so very different.

Martini as Mary is graceful and it is easy to see who raised her as she also forgets her own happiness for that of Franks. It sometimes happens that a character seems to be deserving but on the “wrong side” of the estate hedges and the character of Mary is such a character. Martini is just so elegant in her portrayal of a character I came to admire. Richardson as Frank is a young man, who clearly is against his mother’s financial wishes as with the era, tries his best to move on. Richardson gives his character heart and a sense of duty but, of course, we root for him!

Front as Lady Arabella is a character that is so full of fear at losing everything that she is willing to sacrifice her children’s true happiness. Putting herself above everyone else, she sees Mary as a penniless waif that has no place near her family, especially her son Frank. Oh yes, she is a character you’d love to see fall hard!

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McShane has a small role as Sir Richard but it is a role that sets up the answers to many of the questions regarding Mary and Dr. Thorne. Brie as Miss Dunstable is a role I wish had been bigger because she is definitely a force to be reckoned with and her American gumption of telling it like it is was refreshing.

Franklin as Louis Scatcherd is a son that needed more disciplining as a child. Wow, when he throws a fit he really throws a fit. With a pinched face and a need for revenge, Franklin gives his character the upper hand against the Gresham’s.

Other cast includes Gwyneth Keyworth as Augusta Gresham, Phoebe Nicholls as Countess de Courcy, Tim McMullan as Earl de Courcy, Kate O’Flynn as Lady Alexandrina de Courcy, Tom Bell as Lord Porlock, Nicholas Rowe as Mortimer Gazebee, Alex Price as Reverand Caleb Oriel, Cressida Bonas as Patience Oriel, Ben Moor as Cossett, Jane Guernier as Janet Thacker, Sean Cernow as Jonah, and David Sterne as Mr. Romer.

The Weinstein Company has released a broad range of films that include the likes of THE KING’S SPEECH, APOLLO 18, MY WEEK WITH MARILY, THE IRON LADY, THE ARTIST, SILVER LINGINGS PLAYBOOK, DJANGO UNCHAINED, THE HATEFUL EIGHT and LION to name a few. For more on DOCTOR THRONE go to http://womaningoldmovie.com.

Anchor Bay brings amazing entertainment to those extending their media library and is also celebrating their 20th Anniversary. From theatrical to home release, Anchor Bay brings STARZ Original series, AMC Network series, The Weinstein Company, Radius, children’s entertainment, fitness, and sports to fans. To discover more of what Anchor Bay Entertainment has to offer, please visit www.anchorbayentertainment.com.

TUBS OF POPCORN: I give Julian Fellowes Presents DOCTOR THORNE more than five tubs of popcorn out of five. There is everything to love about this short series that I secretly wish had gone longer and expanded on the characters. Is that selfish of me? I accept that! DOCTOR THORNE has all the elegance of the beautiful home in Greshamsbury Park with a complicated story as well.

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From the tended estate set to the beautiful ornate costuming, it is a moment in time travelling back with ease because of the intricate details. I would expect nothing less from Fellowes and his introduction to each episode along with his final thoughts added too much to viewing DOCTOR THORNE.

Julian Fellowes has an amazing personal history of being an English actor, novelist, film director, screen writer and being a Conservative peer of the House of Lords. All of that is amazing except one thing most important to me – this man brought me season after season of immense joy with the award-winning television series Downton Abbey.

At the end of Downton Abbey’s run there was a serious mourning period because Sunday nights no longer had the pomp and circumstance of characters many of us came to love. When I heard about DOCTOR THORNE my heart skipped a serious beat because I knew that anything Fellowes put together was going to be amazing.

DOCTOR THORNE is actually an adaptation of Anthony Trollope’s novel by the same name. Fellowes would take this opportunity to bring the word to television with a story that is filled with human twists and turns but the basis of everything is love.

Relive it all with THE WALKING DEAD: The Complete Sixth Season on Bluray

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Jeri Jacquin

If there ever was a reason to be crazy excited for THE WALKING DEAD it would be Season Six as AMC and Anchor Bay Entertainment release THE WALKING DEAD: The Complete Sixth Season.

The season opens in spectacular fashion as Rick (Andrew Lincoln) is up to his quarry in zombies! Trying to lure them away, Rick’s group and the other Alexandrians take a plan step by step to save the town. That might not matter in the slightest when a blaring horn changes their plans.

The “W” found on the foreheads of others is finally revealed as the Wolves hit Alexandria hard. While Rick and the others taking care of Walkers, it is up to the town to come together as Morgan (Lennie James), Carol (Melissa McBride), and Carl (Chandler Riggs) do what it is they have learned to do – protect their own. The one exception is Enid who decides to take off.

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As Glenn (Steven Yeun) and Michonne (Danai Gurira) try to change the course of the herd of zombies, they are caught and separated leaving Glenn and Nicholas trapped as the others get away. What happens next is still one of the most talked about episodes and if you haven’t seen it I’m not about to give it all away.

After the Wolves in Alexandria, Rick gets there in time to gather up those he can. Maggie (Lauren Cohan) keeps her composure when she learns Glenn is among those who hasn’t returned, especially since she has news for him.

Back on the road, Daryl (Norman Reedus), Sasha (Sonequa Martin-Green) and Abraham are still leading the pack away and they don’t expect to be attacked by a group they have never seen before. Taking what the three had collected, but not before meeting The Saviors who tell them everything now belongs to the mysterious Negan!

Glen finds the runaway Enid and convinces her to return to Alexandria. What Carol discovers about Morgan brings nothing short of a confrontation between the two. Caught in the middle is Denise (Merritt Wever) who has taken over the role of town doctor.

Once the Walkers find their way in to Alexandria, Rick and the group head to Jessie’s house but not before realizing Deanna is in trouble. Also in trouble is Carl who is injured in a harsh way. It is the fuel brought back by Daryl, Sasha and Abraham (Michael Cudlitz) that stop further invasion.

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Then the arrival of Jesus (Tom Payne) introduces the Alexandrians to the Hilltop where Negan is finally explained to them. The Saviors are Negans’ group who go around taking from everyone. Maggie has a meeting with the Hilltop’s leader Gregory (Xander Berkeley) and a deal is struck – in exchange for food and supplies, Maggie’s group must take out The Saviors.

A plan is formed with Rick and a group deciding how to handle this group of unknowns. Maggie and Carol are on the outside when Daryl hears that they have been taken by a group of fairly insane individuals. What the captors don’t know is that Maggie and Carol aren’t about to take their captivity without a fight.

Daryl, Rosita (Christian Serratos), Eugene (Josh McDermitt) and Denise are looking for medical supplies for the injured but Dwight (Austin Amelio) and The Saviors are waiting for them. The group that is left lock Alexandria down but not before Carol decides she has had enough and leaves. Rick and Morgan go after her while Daryl decides he isn’t going to take killing his people lying down.

What none of the suspect is that The Saviors are waiting all round them and in a finale that is still causing a stir with fans – Rick, Michonne, Carol, Eugene, Abraham, Rosita, Glen, Maggie and Daryl are on their knees before Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and one will feel the wrath of Lucille.

One swing of that bat changes everything!

Did I tell you everything? Absolutely not! That is the best part of this series; there is no way to tell anyone everything as the creepy fleshy stuff is in the details. Of course THE WALKING DEAD has zombies and some of the best undead I have ever seen on television, or in film for that matter.

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Lincoln as Rick can do no wrong and if you don’t believe me just as the thousands of howling fans when that man enters Hall H of Comic Con every year. He may have his ‘Rick-tator’ moments but we all love him! This season he is up against the craziest sorts trying to control as much of this uncontrollable world as possible.

Gurira as Michonne has finally come to terms with how this chaos is and still manages to give fans what they have suspected for a few seasons now. There is chemistry that finally brings love among the corpses. Yes, I’m going to talk in zombie terms as much as possible. Gurira gives this character such depth and yet still manages a smile occasionally and I’ve watched that smile change things up.

Riggs as Carl has certainly grown up right before our eye (pun intended) yet he still is showing signs of definitely being his father’s son. He is also big brother who isn’t about to let Wolves, Saviors or any other creepy thing get near his baby sister! Yeun as Glenn continues to get out of bloody situations while continuing to be a supporter of the group that keeps Maggie safe.

McBride as Carol is secretly my favorite because she is the only woman I know who can look like June Cleaver until it’s time to rip off the housewife-baking sweater and wield a weapon. Cohan as Maggie has taken on a leadership role that frees Rick up to be the muscle. Now with her own secret know that it won’t be a secret for long! Cudlitz as Abraham shows me once again what I’ve already known – redheads are badasses! McDermott as Eugene has me wondering this season whether his character is going to do something significant or end up a zombie happy meal. Serratos as Rosita is also showing her chops and Wever as Denise learns what chops can do. James as Morgan is a character I can’t talk about without wanting to throw something at him whereas once I trusted Morgan – now I don’t.

Reedus as Daryl can never be messed with – both in character and out. I just enjoy his performance as Daryl because he doesn’t necessarily need dialogue to get his point across. Losing his bike and bow are reason enough to be afraid of him but this season he has some introspection that I think is going to serve him well in Season 7.

AMC is home to some of the most popular and acclaimed programs on television. Their lineup has included Mad Men and Breaking Bad with original dramas continuing with Better Call Saul, Halt and Catch Fire, Hell on Wheels, Into the Badlands, Humans as well as Fear The Walking Dead. Don’t think they are finished as the new series Feed the Beast, The Son and The Terror are coming soon! To go deeper into these series visit www.amc.com.

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Anchor Bay Entertainment leads in independent home entertainment that includes STARZ Original series, children’s entertainment and sports with specialty films on Bluray and DVD. For more of what they have to offer and get ready to add to your home entertainment library please visit www.anchorbayentertainment.com.

TUBS OF POPCORN: Are you kidding? Of course I give THE WALKING DEAD: The Complete Sixth Season five tubs of popcorn out of five. There is absolutely nothing about this series I would change (even when I’m screaming my head off saying “that’s so wrong I can’t stand it! or “oh no they didn’t!” or “this is just b.s.”) and legions of fans would probably agree with me.

Yes we get emotional, yes we get crazy, yes we think that creator Robert Kirkman is systematically trying to drive us insane with cliffhangers and season breaks but yet we will come back – time after time. Why?

Because the characters are intense, the storylines are epic, set designs are nothing short of amazing, the cinematography is breath-stealing and SFX-god Greg Nicotero knows exactly how to make us freak out with epic zombies. Does that answer your question?

The Walking Dead: The Complete Sixth Season on Bluray includes Inside The Walking Dead (on DVD), Episode 616: Last Day on Earth – Extended Version (on Bluray), Audio Commentaries, Deleted Scenes (which I LOOOOOVED), The Making of “The Walking Dead, In Memoriam, 601: Out of the Quarry, Guts & Glory: The Death of Nicholas, Strength in Bonds, Negan: Someone to Fear and The Face of Death: Iconic Walkers of the Season. Three hours of extra content is just the beginning of what can be the most amazing marathon watching!

THE WALKING DEAD is a series that is worthy of being a part of anyone’s home media library because fans of the comic book and series will never get tired of revisiting the beginning of this storyline up until the Negan line up! This fall fans will be glued to their television on the premier of Season 7 and yes, I am one of them.

In the end – sometimes it isn’t the Walkers they need to fear!

VIRAL Gets Under the Skin

 

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to DVD from Radius TWC, Dimension Films, Anchor Bay Entertainment along with directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman is the tale of insanity that goes VIRAL.

Emma (Sofia Black D’Elia) and Stacey (Analeigh Tipton) are sisters living in the suburb going about their teenage life. That is until a mysterious virus begins to spread with no warning through the town. This isn’t just any virus; this virus is a parasite that controls its host creating a flesh eating creature.

Trying to get out of town and to their father, the girls are stopped at a military checkpoint and forced to go back home. Once there they barricade themselves to keep away from the infection that has taken over their street. Joining them are friends Evan (Travis Tope) and CJ (Machine Gun Kelly) who are also looking to survive!

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When Stacey becomes infected, the others do what they must to keep her even more secluded until they can figure out how to help. Although serious, it becomes even more so when they realize the military is about to rain down on the neighborhoods that have bands of infected waiting to take their evil even more viral.

It is a battle of good versus viral!

D’Elia as Emma is a strong teen who, in my opinion, is extremely clever and thinks things through. I tell you that the bathroom scene with her sister (without spoiling it) creeped me out totally but I also couldn’t stop watching. Awesome. D’Elia is a strong teen but she is also everything a teen should be meaning freaked out, totally on edge and even thinking about a little romance thrown in.

Tipton as Stacey brings creepy infected to a whole new level. She also has an awesome scream that comes from down deep and I’m not so sure I’d want to be in the same room when she lets loose. Even after munching on her friends I felt sorry for her situation, or maybe that’s just the Mom in me that is thinking “well, a teen has to eat right?”

Tope as Evan takes on a strong role wanting to make sure he is keenly aware of what is going on outside the house knowing that is what will save them. Kelly as CJ gets a chance to outwit and outmatch the viral-inians when I thought he would have been the first to go. Goes to show how versatile being a teen in an apocalyptic world pays off.

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Other cast include: Michael Kelly as Michael Drakeford, John Cothran as Mr. Toomey, Stoney Westmoreland as Bill, Linzie Gray as Gracie Lemay, and Brianne Howey as Tara Dannelly.

TWC along with Dimension Films has put together some amazing films with 351 Oscar nominations and 82 Academy Awards. Since 2005 they have released such memorable films as INGLORIOUS BASTERDS, THE KING’S SPEECH, THE ARTIST, SILVER LINGINGS PLAYBOOK, DJANGO UNCHAINED, PHILOMENA, THE IMITATION GAME THE HATEFUL EIGHT and so many more.

Anchor Bay Entertainment continues to release a diverse array of films in the home entertainment market. Including STARZ Original series to children’s entertainment, all can be found on Bluray and DVD formats. For more of what they have to offer to expand your own home media library please visit www.anchorbayentertainment.com.

VIRAL is the classic horror without to much gore. Anytime you put a creepy creature inside human beings to see what they’ll do next I’m all in. The teens are put through their paces starting out in normal teen mode to having to put all they know into action to survive.

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The film is held together by four cast members who run through every gambit of emotion and still manage to kick in the basic survival instincts. The ‘creatures’ are pretty awesome and although I could pick apart things here and there that remind me of other films like VIRAL, I don’t mind it so much.

In fact I enjoy when an idea like creepy crawly things invading humans gets a chance to go a step further and that’s what VIRAL does.

The films producer Jason Blum is also responsible for the smash 2010 fright film INSIDIOUS (which is one of my favorites) as well as THE VISIT and THE PURGE. Directors Joost and Schulman freaked us all out with the PARANORMAL ACTIVITY films so all three of these creators know a thing or two about making us all cringe!

So get your turtleneck sweaters handy because you are going to want to always wear one after this film and I love it!

In the end – family bonds won’t be enough!

The STARZ Limited Series “The Girlfriend Experience” Comes to Bluray

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AVAILABLE ON BLU-RAY AND DVD ON AUGUST 2, 2016
Riley Keough astonishes” (US Weekly) in “Spring’s most compelling series” (Adam Rathe, Dujour), “The Girlfriend Experience” alongside Paul Sparks (“House of Cards,” “Boardwalk Empire,” Mud) and Mary Lynn Rajskub (“24: Live Another Day,” “2 Broke Girls,” Little Miss Sunshine). Having previously worked together on Magic MikeSteven Soderbergh and Riley Keough (Mad Max: Fury Road) continue their working partnership with this “sharp” (Nick Schager, The Daily Beast) and “intelligent” (US Weekly) drama “The Girlfriend Experience.” The STARZ Limited series, which was written and directed by Lodge Kerrigan and Amy Seimetz, is suggested by Soderbergh’s original film by the same name, and will be available on Blu-ray™ and DVD on August 2, 2016 from Anchor Bay Entertainment and on Digital HD today from Starz Digital. 

Christine Reade (Riley Keough) is a second year student at Chicago-Burnham Law School and a new intern at a prestigious firm. Working hard to establish herself at the firm, her focus quickly shifts when a classmate introduces her to the world of transactional relationships. Known as GFEs, they are women who provide “The Girlfriend Experience” — emotional and sexual relationships at a very high price. Juggling two very different lives, Christine quickly finds herself drawn into the GFE world, attracted to the rush of control and intimacy.

“The Girlfriend Experience” premiered to critical acclaim on Starz on April 10, 2016 and was co-created by Lodge Kerrigan (Claire Dolan) and Amy Seimetz (Sun Don’t Shine). Executive Produced by Steven Soderbergh (Magic Mike, Ocean’s Eleven Franchise, Erin Brockovich)Philip FleishmanLodge KerriganAmy SeimetzJeff Cuban and Gary Marcus, “The Girlfriend Experience” will be available on Blu-ray and DVD from Anchor Bay Entertainment on August 2, 2016 for the suggested retail price of $39.98 and $49.99, respectively.

To learn more about the film, please visit www.anchorbayentertainment.com.

 

WAR & PEACE is Epic: Speaking with Director Tom Harper

war

 

 

Jeri Jacquin

On Bluray and DVD from Anchor Bay Entertainment, TWC and the BBC is the beautifully told story of WAR & PEACE: The Complete Miniseries. Now, read what director Tom Harper has to say about his epic work.

It is 1805 Russia when only the rumors of Napoleon coming to Moscow were on the wind. Pierre (Paul Dano) is the illegitimate son of Count Bezukhov, the richest man in Russia. Prince Kuragin (Stephen Rea) is doing everything possible to make sure that Pierre doesn’t inherit a thing, but the young man has many on his side.

Becoming the new Count Bezukhov takes Pierre from a simple life to extravagance like he has never known. That is when Anna Povlovna Scherer (Gillian Anderson) sets her sites on matchmaking with Helene (Tuppence Middleton). Before Pierre has a time to catch his wealthy breathe, he is married.

Happy for all his success is the Rostova family and his good friend Natasha (Lily James), Nikolai (Jack Lowden), parents Count Rostov (Adrian Edmondson) and Countess Rostova (Greta Scacchi) along with Cousin Sonya (Aisling Loftus).

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Also friends of Pierre are the Bolkonsky family including Prince Andrei (James Norton), his sister Princess Marya (Jessie Buckley) and their very loud father Prince Bolkonsky (Jim Broadbent).

Prince Andrei and Nikolai are soldiers who are preparing for what might happen if Napoleon Bonaparte (Mathieu Kassovitz) enters their country. After losing his wife, Prince Andrei begins to have feelings for Natasha but father Prince Bolkonsky wants them to wait a year and Natasha agrees.

Meanwhile Sonya and Nikolai have had an unspoken relationship but he is having trouble making the commitment. His mother the Countess decides its time for her son to help the family financially and wants Nikolai to marry a wealthy woman.

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In the meantime Pierre discovers that his wife Helena has been less than faithful yet he looks the other way until he can’t any longer. Having a hard time knowing what to do, he becomes involved in the lives of his friends.

War is on the horizon as Napoleon invades Russia, in the midst of it all relationships are being torn apart, friendships put to the test, loyalties under scrutiny, secrets kept, families in ruin and all in the name of love.

This is the story of life.

Tom Harper

That’s where director Tom Harper and story adaptor Andrew Davis come in. They brought together the beautiful tale of a time in Russia so deep and rich that holds every human emotion imaginable.

I had the pleasure of speaking with Tom about WAR & PEACE, his thoughts on making the miniseries, the cast and what he hopes everyone takes away after seeing his work.

Thank you for talking to me today Tom.

Thank you Jeri, it’s a pleasure.

Let’s delve right in because this is truly had to be a huge undertaking for you. What drew you to take this story on?

I fell in love with it really. This is one of the most wonderful stories and the characters are so fantastic and relevant to me. This story occurred over 200 years ago yet it is still relatable and I think the passions and relationships are also relevant I suppose.

Is this a project someone brought to you?

Yes, the BBC came to me with the project. This was a combination of Leo Tolstoy and Andrew Davis as well bringing it all together.

Had you thought about how much this was going to take of your life? This is a miniseries to tell a huge story that has so much detail.

I knew it was a huge undertaking but I didn’t quite realize what I was getting myself into. It was two years of my life and for a lot of that it was incredibly intense. Every waking moment was thinking and working on the show. We were in Russia and Lithuanian and the shoots were sometimes six months long. It was challenging and we went to some extraordinary places and did epic things with battles and balls. It was incredibly challenging and demanding but at the same time rewarding too. We had some wonderful experiences and I was fortunate to work with amazing actors, crew and go across the country. It was a pretty special job and it doesn’t come much better than that I think. It wasn’t without its trials and challenges but ultimately it is why you get into the job in the first place.

One of the things I love are period pieces, you can rise or fall on the set design and costuming. Where you as detail oriented about that?

Yes and no. I had a very clear idea of how it should be and there are very clear ideas in the book. There was such an enormous amount with a cast of 130 people and 230 locations and inevitably you work with great people. When it comes to detailing you call on experts and all their job is is to oversea the making of the military uniforms or embroidery of the dresses. There are great skills coming into play here with brilliant people who had that attention to detail. They were all working to complete the overall vision. The detail is important and brilliant people working on it.

Is it hard to put your trust in so many people when you are working on something this epic?

It’s hard but you have to take a leap of faith. There is no way you can be everywhere all the time. You can’t make something on this scale if you can’t work with people and trust the people you hire to do the work. You can’t be everywhere so my role was to oversea the vision and the tone and the look and detail. There is so much to do so you have to trust.

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Can you tell me about working with Paul Dano? Watching him bring Pierre to life was, as always with him, just beautiful.

It was pretty wonderful really. Paul is, I think, one of the finest actors in the world. Actually casting him was a very straight process really. This was a difficult part to cast I think because Pierre doesn’t externally do very much but stuff happens to him and internally he is complicated, thoughtful and complex. That doesn’t manifest in his actions, not until the end really. I needed someone who could show that internal world and be able to lead the whole show. Paul was at the top of my list at the very beginning. He read the script and liked it and it turned out that he studied Russian Literature! I think Paul is an exceptional actor and I think what he brought to the role was extraordinary and he has this ability to transform and tap into the magic of a role. He makes such interesting and surprising choices and he’s always is always telling and fascinating to watch. I think he does an extraordinary job.

Lily James as Natasha, she is so amazing to me. Every role she takes on she gives it a totally different look. She is the light of the series.

I think you are exactly right. She also has a hard job to do because she begins this role as a teenager and terrible things happen to her. She is so innocent, youthful and vivacious and over the course of years she falls in love and the public disgrace and death. Natasha goes on a hell of a ride and a journey for a young actor to go on. She captures all of the emotions and you believe by the end everything the character goes through.

Watching each character start innocent enough and through their life journey is really amazing to watch. With such a large cast and each having their own story to tell it is thrilling to see how you brought out the nuances of the book. This is so epic, get use to that work when talking about this work of yours.

I’m so glad you liked it.

You managed from the get-go to capture and make me want to watch more and more. That’s what I love about what you have created here. When you finally got to sit down and watch the whole thing, what are some of your personal thoughts?

Because I’m so close to it and so wanted it to be good and we had been through so much to make it it was wonderful. It was such a Herculean effort by so many people. You always hope something will be good but because it is so much longer than other work I have done and the stakes were higher, I found it very difficult to be able to assess it in an objective way. I knew I liked it and that some of the performances were fantastic but it was hard to know if I did it justice. I do remember a time when everyone was exhausted and were doing promos with the cast and crew toward the end before the wrap. I thought to myself, ‘it might actually be okay’.  So there was a spark of elation that it will all be okay!

I have nothing but praise for you Tom; you brought such emotion along with such beauty and wrapped it up with strength. Thank you very much for that. So, how do you handle a cast this large!

Actually, of all the things that were hard it wasn’t one of them! Mainly because they were so brilliant, professional, talented and a pleasure to be with them. Everyone was a joy to work with. We were working in groups as well. We scheduled it in such a way so that we’d do one group, then the battle, then the ball so every two weeks the cast would change and it was quite nice. It was nice for the cast to get breaks and come back refreshed. That worked pretty nicely.

What would you want anyone watching the series to take away with them after seeing your work?

I hope people come away with a positive outlook toward life and humility despite some of the atrocities we all face. I believe and Tolstoy believed it is the beauty and wonder in life that makes it all possible.

Thank you Tom for talking with me today and congratulations on a marvelous and beautiful – and epic – piece of work with WAR & PEACE, well done sir.

Thank you Jeri, I’m so pleased you liked it, truly.

 

It was such a pleasure talking to Tom about the epic miniseries of WAR & PEACE that is now on stunning Bluray. The cast, sets, and costuming all brings Leo Tolstoy’s brilliant work of literature to life. This is a miniseries that will make an amazing addition to anyone’s home media library. Pick up WAR & PEACE now!

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