Knightriders

discs streets of fire

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! If you see something you like, click on the title to buy it from Amazon. Streets of Fire (UK) Welcome to another time, another place, and a world where rock ‘n’ roll meets the American Western alongside an infusion of rockabilly gangsters and neon living. Pop icon Ellen Aim (Diane Lane) has been kidnapped by the leader of the Bombers, Raven Shaddock (Willem Dafoe). Her only hope is an ex-boyfriend turned mercenary, Tom Cody (Michael Paré). While wrapped in peculiar details, this oddball action/drama/musical is actually a pretty straightforward tale plot-wise, and it’s those details that make it stand apart. Well, the details, the cast, and the songs. The lead trio is joined by Rick Moranis, Bill Paxton, Amy Madigan, and other recognizable faces, and the songs are catchy as all hell. The UK’s Second Sight is releasing this Walter Hill cult classic to Blu-ray for the first time, and while I can’t personally vouch for the disc’s picture and sound, the label has a strong track record and the inclusion of a new, 80-minute documentary on the film is an incredibly intriguing extra. [Blu-ray/DVD extras: Documentary, press kit, music videos] *This is a region-B release and requires an all-region player to be played in the US.*

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discs central park

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! As always, if you see something you like, click on the image to buy it. The Central Park Five The term “crime of the century” is an overused one, and one of the more infamous examples of its application came in 1989 when a white, female jogger in NYC’s Central Park was sexually assaulted and left for dead. The culprits were identified as five black teens who were tried and convicted both in the courtroom and the court of public opinion. The boys were sentenced and served out their time, but they were relieved and the world were surprised in 2002 when the real culprit confessed. PBS golden boy Ken Burns co-directs this sad, shocking and infuriating doc that explores the case from the perspective of both the boys and the truth. Over eager police and prosecutors combined with a racially divided public led to a terrible miscarriage of justice. The film acknowledges that the blame lay equally with the authorities, the press and at times, the boys’ parents too. The NYC of more than twenty years ago seems almost unrecognizable to the city of today, but the facts speak for themselves. If only there had been someone to listen back in 1989. [DVD extras: Featurettes]

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