Category Archives: New World Pictures

Blu-Ray News #389: Cockfighter (1974).

Directed by Monte Hellman
Starring Warren Oates, Richard B. Shull, Harry Dean Stanton, Laurie Bird, Ed Begley Jr.

Shout Factory is bringing Monte Hellman’s Cockfighter (1974) to Blu-Ray, which is very good news indeed.

Hellman didn’t make many movies, which is a real shame. This is one of his best. It’s got a great cast — Warren Oates, Richard B. Shull and Harry Dean Stanton are some of my favorite character actors ever, and Laurie Bird is, well, Laurie Bird.

Cockfighter had a hard time with distribution, complete with titles changes (Born To Kill, Wild Drifter, etc.) and all kinds of oddball ad campaigns. It obviously was a tough sell. But it’s a terrific picture full of outstanding performances. Highly, highly recommended.

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Filed under 1974, DVD/Blu-ray News, Harry Dean Stanton, Monte Hellman, New World Pictures, Roger Corman, Warren Oates

Blu-Ray News #226: Piranha (1978).

Directed by Joe Dante
Starring Bradford Dillman, Heather Menzies, Kevin McCarthy, Keenan Wynn, Barbara Steele, Dick Miller, Belinda Balaski, Paul Bartel, Richard Deacon, Bruce Gordon, Stephen The Swimming Swine

I’m so happy to be putting this post together. Because yet another movie that I love dearly, Joe Dante’s Piranha (1978), is getting a real Cadillac of a Blu-Ray release from Scream Factory this June.

One of the prop piranhas.

It’s often called “the best of the Jaws ripoffs.” But it’s more than that. It’s scary. It’s funny. It parades a terrific cast of veteran character actors across the screen. And it just plain entertains. Released the same summer as Jaws 2 (1978), it’s the better picture by far. After all, what could possibly beat a plot like this — scads of piranhas are released into a river, and at the end of the river lies a kids’ summer camp. Pure genius.

Year ago, I was outbid on a 16mm print of this movie that turned up on eBay. This extras-packed Blu-Ray will certainly help right that wrong. Here’s what you’ll get —
4K Remaster from the original camera negative
New Audio Commentary with Roger Corman
Audio Commentary with  Joe Dante & producer Jon Davison
“The Making Of Piranha” – Interviews with Roger Corman, Joe Dante, Dick Miller, Belinda Balaski & more
Behind-The-Scenes Footage, Bloopers & Outtakes, Additional Scenes from the TV version
Stills, Trailers, TV Spots, Radio Spots

All that, and it comes in one of those fancy steelbook packages. I can’t wait sink my teeth into this. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

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Filed under 1978, Barbara Steele, Dick Miller, DVD/Blu-ray News, Joe Dante, Kevin McCarthy, New World Pictures, Roger Corman, Shout/Scream Factory