Apr 17, 2012

DVD Releases That We Dig This Week (04.17.12)

This week's DVD releases have a good number of unsung gems and curios for those looking for something beyond the current fare. If you've already seen Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol and Steve McQueen's Shame (which arrive on DVD today too), then here are some interesting choices from the vaults that are worthy of your attention.

Once again Shout! Factory has struck gold mining Roger Corman's New World vaults, with The Nurses Collection, featuring four of the five popular "Nurse" series of films from the early 1970's. These films generally featured a trio of nurses with various shenanigans involving action, comedy, sex and even some social commentary tucked in there somewhere! Curiously, the first instalment, The Student Nurses, is the missing title here, but no matter, this is a must-have, regardless. This set will certainly be a welcome respite from the very poor release of these and the "Student Teacher" cycle of films from Infinity Entertainment a couple of years ago.

And speaking of upgrades, The Rank Collection, released through VCI Entertainment, features another double-bill of the popular "Carry-On" series of films: Carry on Doctor and Carry on up the Khyber. Fans who were dissatisfied with the Wham! USA disks will no doubt want these!

For the horror fan, here are a couple of unsung gems this week. From Redemption Films, the terrific chiller The Asphyx (1973), which I first saw way back on Elvira's old "Movie Macabre" TV show. Time to upgrade from the Interglobal VHS!

Scorpion Releasing adds another to its series of "Katarina's Nightmare Theater" disks, which specialize in obscure chillers (usually from the 1970s and 80s).  This week, it's the 1981 Australian supernatural thriller The Survivor, about a lone survivor from a plane crash. 

Many people know that Tom Selleck was originally considered for the Indiana Jones role in Raiders of the Lost Ark (which eventually went to Harrison Ford). Ironically, Selleck appeared in one of the many pulpy adventure films in the early 1980s that were produced in the wake of Raider's success. I've never seen High Road To China, but remember that it played a LOT on Pay TV back in the day.  Henstooth Video is behind its release.

Also, Criterion continues its recent trend of unearthing many under-appreciated goodies. This week, Robert M. Young's acclaimed independent 1977 feature Alambrista!, about a migrant worker, makes its debut. Young's films seldom received the exposure they deserved, so this release is very exciting to see.

Happy viewing!

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