blu-ray DVD & Blu-ray

UK DVD & Blu-ray Releases: Monday 7th September 2009

Including This Is Spinal Tap – Up To 11 Edition, Fifty Dead Men Walking and Gladiator

UK DVD and Blu-ray Releases 07-09-09



This Is Spinal Tap – Up To 11 Edition (Optimum): A re-release for the classic 1984 spoof music documentary which stars Christopher Guest, Michael McKean and Harry Shearer as the three members of fictional heavy-metal/hard rock band Spinal Tap.

Directed by Rob Reiner it remains a brilliantly observed look at the pretentious glory of rock and roll and fully justifies it’s hallowed status amongst audiences the world over.

Optimum are releasing three versions in the UK, a 3 DVD box-set (£19.99 RRP), a Blu-ray (£24.99 RRP) and a limited edition Marshall Amp edition (£69.99 RRP).

The Marshall amp edition includes:

  • Limited Edition customised fully working Marshall amp (going up to 11)
  • Numbered speciall amp packaging
  • 7 original art cards
  • 5 Disc Stonehenge digi pack – including:
  • Discs 1-3 – DVD content as per the 3-Disc DVD box-set (detailed below)
  • Disc 4: The Blu-ray of ‘This Is Spinal Tap’
  • Disc 5: The Original Soundtrack CD

Extras on the Blu-ray Disc (all on a single-disc with the film) and the 3 DVD box-set include:

Disc 1:

  • Fully re-mastered feature
  • This is Spinal Tap: Up to 11 – Brand new 25th Anniversary Documentary feat. Ricky Gervais, Eddie Izzard, Martin Freeman, Anvil, Serge Pizzorno and more (43 mins)
  • Audio Commentary by the band
  • Menu commentary by the band
  • Go To 11 – Menu animation feature

Disc 2:

  • The Return of Spinal Tap Royal Albert Hall concert (57 mins)
  • 2007 Live Earth footage & Live Earth reunion short film (4 mins 20)
  • National Geographic Stonehenge interviews with Nigel (9 mins 1)
  • Sprinkle some ****in Fairy Dust On It – interview with Reg Presley of The Troggs (6 mins 54)

Disc 3:

  • Outtakes** (1 hr 7 mins)
  • Original Trailers (7 mins)
  • 4 x Music Videos (12 mins 27)
  • TV Spots (1 min 37)
  • Cutting Room Floor Deleted Scenes incl Heavy Metal Memories, Flower People, Cheese Roll trailer
  • EPK featurettes (20 mins 50)
  • Creative Meeting & Bitch School Videos (4 mins 33)

DVD Specs:

  • 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
  • English DD5.1 Surround
  • English and French DD2.0 Stereo
  • Subtitles (Main Feature): Danish, French, German, Norwegian, Finnish, Swedish
  • Subtitles (Extras & Commentary): French, German

Blu-ray Specs:

  • 1080P 1.85:1 Widescreen
  • English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
  • English and French Stereo LPCM
  • Subtitles (Main Feature): Danish, French, German, Norwegian, Finnish, Swedish
  • Subtitles (Extras & Commentary): French, German

Perhaps the highlight of the new package is the Outtakes which include many scenes which didn’t make the final cut including:

  • Romance, Mystery & Sheer Sex
  • Opening Night Party
  • Promo Spots
  • Derek’s Out of Circulation
  • Tommy’s Corruption
  • Backstage
  • Trouble in Memphis
  • Respects to the King
  • On the Air with Spinal Tap
  • Son of St Hubbins
  • Roma ’79
  • Recording Studio Meltdown
  • Nigel’s Replacement
  • Tap at The Zoo

Fifty Dead Men Walking (Metrodome): A gripping adaptation of Martin McGartland’s 1997 autobiography, about his time as an informant within the Provisional IRA from 1988 til 1991. It stars Jim Sturgess as McGartland, Ben Kingsley as his British handler and was directed by Kari Scogland.

Although some changes to the actual events reduce the film’s overall impact the performances and direction make this a fairly substantial drama. It isn’t in the same league as ‘Bloody Sunday’ or ‘Hunger’ but remains a compelling portrait of one particular episode within the Troubles.

Available on DVD (£15.99 RRP) and Blu-ray Disc (£19.99 RRP), it contains the following extras:

  • Commentary with Director Kari Skogland
  • On set with ‘Fifty Dead Men Walking’
  • Exclusive extract from the book ‘Fifty Dead Men Walking’
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Theatrical Trailer

* Listen to my interview with director Kari Scogland *


Gladiator (Universal): The Blu-ray release for Ridley Scott’s Oscar-winning Roman epic has arguably been one of the most anticipated releases of the new format.

Russell Crowe stars as Maximus, a Roman general who is betrayed, has his family killed and is sold into to slavery by a corrupt prince, before eventually returning to Rome as a gladiator seeking revenge.

There has been a big debate on various Blu-ray and Hi-def sites about the quality of the transfer used for this release with some suggesting that it is good, whilst others are critical of Paramount (who own the film after acquiring DreamWorks in 2005, even though Universal is releasing it in the UK), accusing them of cutting corners in the process.

However, it is likely to be a big seller, not least because of the wealth of extras, which are as follows.

Tech Details

  • 1080P 2.35:1 Widescreen
  • English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
  • French, Italian, German, Spanish, Portuguese & Latin American Spanish 5.1 DTS Surround
  • Subtitles: English SDH, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Brazilian, Swedish, Danish, Finnish, Dutch, Norwegian, Portuguese, Traditional Chinese, Latin American Spanish

Disc One

  • Theatrical Version (155mins)
  • Audio Commentary by Director Ridley Scott, Cinematographer John Mathieson & Editor Pietro Scalia
  • Deleted Scenes with optional commentary
  • Extended Version (171mins)
  • Introduction by Ridley Scott
  • Audio Commentary by Ridley Scott & Russell Crowe
  • U-Control features on both Theatrical and Extended versions
  • The Scrolls of Knowledge – The original Are You Not Entertained? trivia track newly enhanced allowing viewers to access a series of new behind-the-scenes featurettes exploring key scenes throughout the film
  • Visions from Elysium: Topic Marker – A U-Control feature that allows Disc One Viewers to tag moments of interest throughout the entire film, allowing them to create “shopping lists” of topics to learn more about from the features on Disc Two

Disc Two

  • Visions from Elysium – A U-Control feature that automatically accesses further content from tagged moments of interest that have been marked by viewers from Disc One
  • Strength and Honour: Creating the World of Gladiator (200 mins.) – The definitive documentary on the origin, production and impact of this Oscar-winning Best Picture
  • Tale of the Scribes: Story Development
  • The Tools of War: Weapons
  • Attire of the Realm: Costume Design
  • The Heat of Battle: Production Journals Germania / Zucchabar / Rome
  • Shadows and Dust: Resurrecting Proximo
  • The Glory of Rome: Visual Effects
  • Echoes in Eternity: Release and Impact
  • Strength and Honour will now include all-new Picture-In-Picture content accessed via U-Control (156mins)
  • Aurelian Archive
  • The Making of Gladiator (25 mins.)
  • Gladiator Games: The Roman Bloodsport (50mins.)
  • Hans Zimmer: Scoring Gladiator (21 mins.)
  • Maximus Uncut: Between the Takes with Russell Crowe (8mins.)
  • My Gladiator Journal by Spencer Treat Clark (Text/Photos) – The personal diary of the young actor who played Lucius, providing a unique and amusing perspective on the creation of an epic film
  • VFX Explorations: Germania & Rome (24 mins.)
  • Image and Design
  • Production Design Featurette and Galleries (10 mins.)
  • Storyboard Demonstration (14 mins.)
  • Multi-Angle Storyboard Comparisons and Galleries (15 mins. x 2 angles)
  • Ridleygram Galleries
  • Costume Design Galleries
  • Photo Galleries
  • Abandoned Sequences & Deleted Scenes
  • Alternate Opening Titles and Featurette (9 mins.)
  • Blood Vision (with optional commentary) (3 mins.)
  • Rhino Fight (with optional commentary) (5 mins.)
  • Choose Your Weapon (1 min.)
  • Treasure Chest (7mins)
  • Trailers (2) & TV Spots (20) (13 mins.)

Amazon are also offering a Limited Edition Steelbook set.



Are You Being Served Series 8 (2 Entertain)
Butterfly Kiss (Second Sight)
Chan is Missing (Drakes Avenue Pictures)
Doctor Who: The Twin Dilemma (2 Entertain)
Dollhouse Season 1 (Fox)
Dororo (MVM)
Face to Face Box Set (2 Entertain)
Far Cry (High Fliers)
Fermat’s Room (Revolver)
Hamlet 2 (Momentum)
Hannah Montana: The Movie (Disney)
Helen (New Wave Films)
Infestation (Icon)
Louis Theroux Law & Disorder (2 Entertain)
Paul Merton in India (2 Entertain)
The Boat That Rocked (Universal)
The Girl Cut in Two (Artificial Eye)
The Inner Life of Martin Frost (Axiom Films)
The Thirties in Colour (2 Entertain)
The Wonderful World of Albert Khan (2 Entertain)
Time Regained (Second Sight)
Tobruk (High Fliers)
Waveriders (Element Pictures)
Wuthering Heights (ITV DVD)

> Browse more DVD Releases at Amazon UK and Play
> Check the latest DVD prices at DVD Price Check
Take a look at the current UK cinema releases (W/C Friday 4th September)