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DVD & Blu-ray

UK DVD & Blu-ray Releases: Monday 13th December 2010

Including Restrepo and Battle Royale

DVD & BLU-RAY PICKS

Restrepo (Dogwoof): Winner of the Grand Jury Prize for documentary at Sundance earlier this year, this film traces a year in the life of US troops stationed in a remote outpost in Afghanistan.

Directed by Sebastian Junger and Tim Hetherington, it focuses on a US platoon in the Korengal Valley who renamed their outpost ‘Restrepo’ in honour of a fallen comrade.

Located in hostile territory, the Korengal Valley has seen some of the deadliest fighting in Afghanistan and the filmmakers managed to secure extraordinary access, living with the unit over 15 months.

The result is a vivid depiction of modern warfare and a fascinating glimpse into life on the frontline of the War on Terror.

The extras on the DVD include:

  • Trailer
  • Additional Soldier Interviews
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Where Are They Now Featurette

> Buy Restrepo on DVD or iTunes
> Official UK site for Restrepo

Battle Royale (Arrow): The controversial 2000 film gets a 3-disc special edition re-release with numerous extras.

Directed by Kinji Fukasaku, it is set in a futuristic Japan on the brink of collapse, where the government is forced to take extreme action to curb their rebellious youth.

Groups of students are selected at random and sent to an island, where they have to play a brutal war game overseen by an embittered teacher (Beat Takeshi).

It was box office sensation when it came out in Japan, prompting much controversy and debate, with its reputation further stoked by admirers such as Quentin Tarantino and the fact that it was unavailable in the US.

This 3 disc set features plenty of extras, which break down like this:

Disc 1 – Theatrical Cut

  • Trailer – in Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (2 min, 720p).
  • The Making of Battle Royale – an abundance of footage from the shooting of Battle Royale, cast and crew discussions, etc. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (52 min, 720p).

Disc 2 – Director’s Cut

  • Special Edition Theatrical Trailer – in Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (2 min, 720p).
  • TV Spot: Tarantino Version – in English and Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (1 min, 720p).
  • Shooting the Special Edition – raw footage from the cast and crew reunion for the Special Edition of Battle Royale. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (10 min, 720p).
  • Takeshi Kitano Interview – the famous Japanese actor answers a series of questions about his decision to appear in Battle Royale, the character he plays, the production process, etc. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (12 min, 720p).
  • Conducting Battle Royale with the Warsaw National Philharmonic Orchestra – raw footage from a soundtrack rehearsal conducted by Masamichi Amano. With optional English subtitles. (8 min, 720p).
  • The Correct Way To Make Battle Royale: Birthday Version – a look at various “weapons” needed to survive Battle Royale. Raw footage from an important birthday celebration is also included. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (4 min, 720p).
  • Tokyo International Film Festival Presentation – raw footage from the gala screening of Battle Royale at the Tokyo International Film Festival. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (5 min, 720p).

SDVD

  • Premiere Press Conference – footage from a press event during which cast and crew members answer various questions. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (13 min, PAL).
  • Opening Day at Marunouchi Toei Move Theater – in Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (15 min, PAL).
  • The Slaughter of 42 High School Students – raw footage from the shooting of Battle Royale. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (11 min, PAL).
  • TV Add – in Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (1 min, PAL).
  • TV Promo – in Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (2 min, PAL).
  • TV Commercials – in Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (4 min, PAL).
  • Promo 1 – in Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (1 min, PAL).
  • Promo 2 – in Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (1 min, PAL).
  • The Correct Way To Fight Battle Royale – a hilarious explanation of various rules and strategies. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (3 min, PAL).
  • Royale Rehearsals – Kinji Fukasaku directs the Battle Royale participants. Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (8 min, PAL).
  • Masamichi Amano conducts Battle Royale – Maestro Masamichi Amano conducts the Warsaw National Philharmonic Orchestra. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (10 min, PAL).
  • Special Effects Comparison – a loot at some of the most disturbing killings/special effects in Battle Royale. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (5 min, PAL).
  • Behind the Scenes Featurette – a standard featurette containing comments from various cast and crew members. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (13 min, PAL).
  • Filming on Set – raw footage from the shooting of various scenes from Battle Royale. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (11 min, PAL).
  • Trailer Gallery – a collection of trailers for various Kinji Fukasaku films. In Japanese, with optional English subtitles. (23 min, PAL).
  • 32-page Comic
  • 36-page Booklet – includes Tom Mes’ essay “A Battle Without An End”; printed interview with director Kinji Fukasaku; Jay McRoy’s essay “Today’s Lesson is…You Kill Each Other”; extract from Koushan Takami’s original novel (LE Exclusive); and original promotional material, including Director’s Statement, cast and crew biographies (LE Exclusive).
  • 16-page Booklet- including concept artwork for the limited edition set (LE Exclusive).
  • 5×7 Postcards of stills from Battle Royale (LE Exclusive).
  • Fold-out reversible poster of original artwork

> Buy Battle Royale on Blu-ray or DVD at Amazon UK
> Battle Royale at the IMDb

ALSO OUT
A Bay of Blood (Arrow Films) [Blu-ray / DVD]
Knight and Day (20th Century Fox Home Ent.) [Blu-ray / DVD]
Salt (Sony Pictures Home Ent.) [Blu-ray / DVD]
The Expendables: Uncut (Lionsgate UK) [Blu-ray / DVD]
The Last Airbender (Paramount Home Entertainment) [Blu-ray / DVD]
Wallace and Gromit’s World of Inventions (2 Entertain)
> The Best DVD and Blu-rays of 2009

By Ambrose Heron

Editor of FILMdetail