The Twilight Zone

discs the worlds end

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! If you see something you like, click on the title to buy it from Amazon. The World’s End Twenty years ago five friends attempted an epic pub crawl, but their effort fell apart before reaching the final bar, The World’s End. Now the group is reluctantly back together again to try and rewrite history, but the past is an ever-growing obstacle thanks in large part to how much remains unchanged in their old stomping grounds of New Haven. Things get worse though when they realize why exactly that is. Edgar Wright‘s final entry in his thematic Cornetto trilogy found a divisive reception from fans of Hot Fuzz and Shaun of the Dead, but in many ways it’s the best of the three. It’s incredibly funny, highly energetic, and perfectly cast (Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Martin Freeman, Paddy Considine, Eddie Marsan, Pierce Brosnan, and Rosamund Pike to name a few), but it stands out for two other reasons too. First, the film’s structure and execution are incredibly deep and detailed to the point that multiple viewings continue to reveal new connections. Second, and most surprisingly, it has the best fight scene of any film this year. [Blu-ray/DVD extras: Commentaries, storyboard, trivia, featurettes, deleted scenes, outtakes]

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news twilight zone movie

You’re traveling through another dimension, a dimension of sight and sound but also of mind; a journey into a wondrous land where a director known for two mediocre science fiction films is given the keys to a classic series- his next stop, The Twilight Zone! That’s right, The Twilight Zone is getting another modern retelling, this time with Oblivion and Tron: Legacy director Joseph Kosinski in talks to direct. This marks the fourth remake for The Twilight Zone, including the 1983 film and the TV revivals in 1985 and 2002. This speaks volumes about what we’re likely to get in our next Twilight Zone remake. For one, there’s only one director being announced- so either Kosinski will be directing all of the film’s segments by himself, or the film will inexplicably be a single episode stretched to feature length. And second, Kosinski’s not known for his horror chops. The only two pictures in his filmography are futuristic sci-fi tales, so could his modern Twilight Zone ease up on the spookiness and send us centuries into the future? The folks at The Hollywood Reporter mention that the script has already been re-written to hell and back, but will be altered to fit Kosinski’s unique style. That’s key as anyone who’s watched and loved Rod Serling’s series knows its memorable greatness came from the stories. No word yet on who, specifically, is in charge of alterations. The big question from here is: who’ll be the narrator/host? My vote goes to Keith David.

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discs strike back2

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! As always, if you see something you like, click on the image to buy it. Strike Back: The Complete Second Season Michael Stonebridge (Philip Winchester) and Damien Scott (Sullivan Stapleton) weren’t always best of friends, and while they still argue on occasion they’ve also learned that they can trust each other when the bullets start flying. Their latest adventure finds the duo along with their new commander (Rhona Mitra) running and gunning their way across Africa in search of stolen nuclear triggers. Technically the series’ third season, this is Cinemax’s second as the producing entity, and they continue to show why no one even talks about that initial UK season any more. They also continue to show that a TV show can actually best many a lesser action movie in nearly every aspect. The acting and cast here are solid, the cinematography is theater-worthy, and the action sequences are impossibly great for a television series. They also impress with their awareness of both weaponry and tactics that add to the feeling of legitimacy. Hell, Cinemax even ensures the show maintains their high (or low?) standards when it comes to T&A. [Blu-ray/DVD extras: Commentaries]

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discs robot chicken dc

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! As always, if you see something you like, click on the image to buy it. Robot Chicken: DC Comics Special Adult Swim’s Robot Chicken crew set their sites on the world of DC Comics with this special episode, and the results are predictably quite funny. The usual voice talent culprits are along for the fun including show co-creator Seth Green and Breckin Meyer, and they’re joined by the likes of Neil Patrick Harris, Megan Fox, Nathan Fillion and others. Aquaman is an easy and obvious target, but the episode finds some fresh angles on his well justified inferiority complex. If there’s a downside it’s that the show is done in conjunction with DC Comics meaning that they can’t be as mean as they may want to be, but there are still plenty of inappropriate actions and dialogue exchanges within. The episode itself is only 22 minutes long, but the Blu-ray is filled with special features to keep the funny coming for a couple extra hours. [Blu-ray extras: Outtakes, Q&A, commentary, featurette, making of, deleted animatics]

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Matt Reeves Directing

Over at Variety (via FirstShowing), Justin Kroll tweets that that Let Me In and Cloverfield director Matt Reeves is now not directing Warner Bros.’ brand-new Twilight Zone feature film, thanks to those pesky little things known as “scheduling conflicts.” Yet, in the case of Reeves, the director probably did have far too much going on to direct to this new venture. Reeves was tapped for the gig last October, but even back then, the filmmaker had one heck of a full plate. Reeves now has no less than six other projects currently in development that, no doubt, added to the scheduling woes. Those projects include his rumored attachment to direct the Cloverfield sequel, producing an untitled project with Brad Parker and J.J. Abrams, directing This Dark Endeavor: The Apprenticeship of Victor Frankenstein, writing and producing The Invisible Woman, directing The Passage, and writing and directing the adaptation of 8 O’Clock in the Morning. Yeah, the guy is pretty busy, yet it’s still too bad he won’t be helming Twilight Zone, as it sure seemed to fit right in Reeves’ wheelhouse.

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Twilight Zone

According to Variety, Matt Reeves‘s Twilight Zone has captured another writer who is no doubt currently wondering why he’s back in Abraham Lincoln’s time and unable to convince anyone of the assassination. Jason Rothenberg wrote the original draft, which was tackled by Anthony Peckham (Sherlock Holmes), and now Joby Harold (All You Need is Kill, Awake) will take an ink-filled stab at it. The most fascinating thing about the Warner Bros. project is the idea that Rod Serling‘s show will essentially be stretched into a feature film. Previous movies based on the iconic television show were serials, and the show itself got paper thin when it tried to fill an hour-long time slot, so two full hours of being in the Zone could be a bigger challenge than most expect. After all, how much clever brow-beating can we handle? The answer to that question lies in watching every episode. Tread carefully, but there’s still hope for this project. Despite Hayden Christensen’s strange take on playing a motionless guy, Awake was a clever little flick (that Harold also directed). With any luck, his talent will be the final polish it needs to get shoved in front of cameras.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #150): “Stopover In a Quiet Town” (airdate 4/24/64) The Plot: A couple wake up after a night of heavy drinking and quickly realize they’re not in their own bed. Or home. Or town. Or… The Goods: Bob and Milly Frazier (Barry Nelson and Nancy Malone) awaken fully clothed and with a hazy memory of the night before. There was a party and a drive home, but then nothing. A shadow over the car perhaps, but nothing more. They find the strange house they’re in to be empty and head outside to an equally deserted stretch of suburbia. Trees, grass and telephones are little more than props, the illusion of life is attempted with a stuffed squirrel and a mannequin, and a child’s laughter can occasionally be heard nearby. It appears the Wolf Pack has found the premise of The Hangover Part Three.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #149): “The Jeopardy Room” (airdate 4/17/64) The Plot: Russian agents check in, but they don’t check out. The Goods: Major Ivan Kuchenko (Martin Landau) sits in a hotel room mere hours from a planned defection to the West, but while he believes he’s alone in his thoughts he’s actually being monitored by two KGB agents sent to stop him. He discovers the truth when the two men make contact and tell him there’s a bomb in his room. He’ll be dead by dawn unless he can find and disarm the explosive.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #148): “Caesar and Me” (airdate 4/10/64) The Plot: An Irish dummy takes life advice from one probably made in China. The Goods: Jonathan West is an Irish immigrant to America whose only skill appears to be ventriloquism. “Appears to be” but really isn’t, because West actually has no skills and the dummy is somehow alive. With no job and bills to pay West lets the dummy talk him into committing a string of burglaries. But can a man with no perceivable talents find success in a game where one wrong move can send him to jail?

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #147): “Sounds and Silences” (airdate 4/3/64) The Plot: A large, loud man in love with volume finds himself in an audio nightmare. The Goods: Roswell G. Flemington is the captain of a model ship building office where he treats his employees to rants and insults as well as classical music blasting from the speakers. He likes it loud, and he expects everyone else does too. They don’t of course, and neither does his wife who has grown sick of playing second fiddle to a grand orchestral cacophony of other noises. Roswell couldn’t care less about any of them though, but the tables turn one day when every single noise becomes a thundering boom between his ears.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #146): “I Am The Night – Color Me Black” (airdate 3/27/64) The Plot: A whole lotta racism goin’ on. The Goods: On the morning that a man called Jagger is to be hung for murder, the darkness of night never turns into day. As if to weigh in on the wrongful judgment by a bigoted town, the universe has kept the light out of their city limits. But why? What’s at the center of it all? As it turns out, it’s John F. Kennedy.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #140): “From Agnes – With Love” (airdate 2/14/64) The Plot: A scientist runs into trouble when his supercomputer falls in love with him. The Goods: James Ellwood (Wally Cox) is a high level brain working with the State Department on a very important and top secret project. The primary tool at their disposal is the world’s smartest computer, nicknamed Agnes, but after her last handler is relieved of duty for apparent job stress Ellwood becomes the primary scientist on the project. Agnes takes up an entire wall of a room, and her various display screens and communication window resemble a face to some degree. That personification takes on even more weight when she begins communicating with Ellwood about things outside of mathematics and science. She begins poking into his private life and discovers he has the hots for Millie (Sue Randall) the secretary, but when she starts offering suggestions on how to bag Millie it becomes clear that she may have ulterior motives.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #139): “Night Call” (airdate 2/07/64) The Plot: An old biddy is perturbed by an escalating series of phone calls in the middle of the night. The Goods: A creepy old house, a storm cracking apart the sky outside, and an old woman asleep in her bed. Suddenly the phone rings and Miss Elva Keene (Gladys Cooper) is awakened from a troubled sleep. She answers it and hears only silence at first, but soon an indistinguishable voice begins to arise faintly from the distorted reception. Elva complains to the operator the next day, but nothing comes of it and the following night is once again disturbed with a phone call. Someone’s calling Miss Elva, and he’s calling from a very long distance indeed.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #138): “Black Leather Jackets” (airdate 1/31/64) The Plot: A trio of bikers in black leather arrive in a small town, and their neighbor suspects they’re up to some no good shenanigans. The Goods: The tranquility of a small, suburban street is shattered by the loud throttling of three motorcycles that come rolling into view to park in front of a singular home. Their new home. The three riders are clad all in black leather, come complete with scary gang names (Fred, Scott and Steve) and are accompanied by their own jazzy score. They’re a nightmare for family man Stu Tillman (Denver Pyle) for more reasons than one. Stu’s daughter, Ellen (Shelley Fabares), has fallen madly in love with the ruffian named Scott (Lee Kinsolving). Oh, and the trio may just be aliens bent on destroying mankind.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #137): “Number 12 Looks Just Like You” (airdate 1/24/64) The Plot: When conformity is the new normal the refusal to conform is seen as plain crazy. The Goods: Marilyn lives in a future world where everyone undergoes a “transformation” at the age of nineteen that alters their physical appearance into one of a handful of young, sleek and sexy models. The goal, as mandated by the government, is to eliminate inequality and ugliness. No longer will people be made fun of or ostracized for being too fat, short or unattractive. Instead, everyone will look like one of fifteen or so models… and simply where name tags to distinguish those in similar fleshy chassis. But what happens when someone chooses to stay the way they are? Plain and homely Marilyn is about to find out as she says no to the procedure, and everyone around her can only assume she’s gone mad. “What you need is a glass of Instant Smile.”

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #136): “The Self-Improvement of Salvadore Ross” (airdate 1/17/64) The Plot: A no-good putz wishes the universe would give him a break just once. And it does… Twilight Zone style. The Goods: Salvadore Ross (Don Gordon) is what the French call “a douche.” He pulls up one morning in a fancy new car and accosts a woman on the street who he used to date (and who briefly looks like Rene Russo). Leah (Gail Kobe) is surprised to see him riding around in style, but she’s less impressed when she learns he simply “borrowed” the car from an old man he’s currently working for. She rebuffs his aggressive advances, but he works his way into her home where he gets an equally chilly reception from Leah’s otherwise kindly father. Sal wishes aloud that something would go his way just one time and punches a wall for emphasis… which immediately results in a broken hand.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #129): “Probe 7, Over and Out” (airdate 11/29/63) The Plot: An astronaut slams his ship right into a planet, but there’s little chance for him to return home because a nuclear war is destroying everything and everyone he knows. The Goods: Even with the casual gloss of the writing, there’s a deep question that’s been stabbed into the body of this story and remains there, untended to, even as it creates a great amount of aches and pains. That question is one of attempting to put yourself into the moon boots of Colonel Cook (Richard Baseheart) who isn’t just stranded on an alien world – he’s helplessly stranded. He is literally millions of miles away while his world dies. How’s that for powerless?

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #128): “Uncle Simon” (airdate 11/15/63) The Plot: A woman gives in to greed and allows her mean old uncle to die prematurely in an effort to speed up her inheritance. The Goods: Barbara has lived with her Uncle Simon for 25 years, the entirety of her adult life, but her dedication has little to do with love or familial responsibility. Simon is extremely wealthy, and Barbara is in line to inherit it all when he passes. It hasn’t been easy for her though as the man is a complete and utter prick. She keeps her eye on the prize, takes the abuse, and counts the days until the old bastard keels over. Until the day he really does fall over… and lands in a crumpled and twisted heap at the bottom of the stairs. He pleads for her help, but Barbara simply chastises the dying man and walks away.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #127): “The Old Man in the Cave” (airdate 11/8/63) The Plot: After a massively destructive atomic event, a small band of people try to rebuild a life, aided by the advice of a leader that gets all of his marching orders from a mysterious, unseen old man in a cave – just like the title promises! The Goods: With everything in ruins, it’s tough to think straight. We aren’t used to survival mode, and when we drop into it, the results are pretty ugly. Rod Serling knew this, and it was paramount in his creation of The Twilight Zone. This episode is one of the most direct examples of the show’s philosophy that faith and courage should endure even when fear and violence promise to be our salvation. The story here focuses on the pacific Mr. Goldsmith (John Anderson) as he barely holds on to his leadership position – one he utilizes to organize the people left alive in the area.

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With the entire original run of The Twilight Zone available to watch instantly, we’re partnering with Twitch Film to cover all of the show’s 156 episodes. Are you brave enough to watch them all with us? The Twilight Zone (Episode #126): “Living Doll” (airdate 11/1/63) The Plot: A new doll threatens a little girl’s mean-spirited stepfather, and all the lollipops in the world may not be enough to save him. The Goods: Annabelle and her daughter Christie return from a day out with a new toy for the girl, but husband/stepdad Erich (Telly Savalas) is none too thrilled with the purchase. He’d prefer it if his wife didn’t spend his money or use his credit cards, and he’s not above being a complete tool about it towards her and the child. Erich’s angry power play intimidates Annabelle and Christie, but the Talking Tina doll is less than impressed. Quite the opposite in fact. It threatens to kill him.

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