blu-ray DVD & Blu-ray

UK DVD & Blu-ray Releases: Monday 24th August 2009

UK DVD Releases 24-08-09



In The Loop (Optimum): The directorial debut of Armando Iannucci is a marvellous political satire exploring the the inner mechanics of the ‘special relationship’ between London and Washington in the build up to a war in the Middle East.

The plot follows government officials and spin doctors in their behind-the-scenes efforts either to promote the war or prevent it. The cast is excellent with fine performances from Tom Hollander, James Gandolfini, Chris Addison, Peter Capaldi, Anna Chlumsky, Gina McKee, Steve Coogan and David Rasche.

The hilarity of the comedy is only matched by the political savvy of Iannucci’s script which ultimately reveals some sad truths about the craven subservience of Tony Blair’s government to the Bush administration in the build up to the Iraq war.

Extras on the DVD include:

  • Deleted Scenes
  • Audio commentary with cast & director
  • Interview with Gina McKee & Chris Addison
  • Interview with Tom Hollander
  • Interview with Peter Capaldi
  • Interview with director Armando Ianucci
  • Script to Scene Comparison
  • Trailer
  • Webisodes

On Blu-ray the film is presented in 1080P Widescreen with English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, English 2.0 PCM Stereo, English Audio Description and English HOH subtitles (film only). The disc is coded for Region B.

Shifty (Metrodome): A low budget urban thriller from writer/director Eran Creevy set on the outskirts of London, where it follows themes of friendship and loyalty over the course of 24 hours in the life of a young drug dealer, the charismatic “Shifty”.

is a new British film about a young drug dealer (Riz Ahmed) in a town just outside London who sees his life spiral out of control when his best friend (Daniel Mays) returns home.

Directed by Eran Creevy and co-starring Jason Flemyng and Francesca Annis, it was funded by Film London‘s Microwave scheme and shot in just 18 days.

Available on DVD, Blu-ray Disc and a 2-disc HMV Exclusive DVD, the features are outlined below:

Disc 1 Extras

  • Commentary with Writer/Director Eran Creevy & Riz Ahmed (Shifty)
  • The Making of SHIFTY
  • Behind The Scenes
  • Deleted Scenes
  • ‘Shifty’ soundtrack by MC Riz, Sway & Plan B – music video
  • ‘Number One’ by Tinchy Stryder Ft. N-Dubz – music video (from the producers of Shifty)
  • Eran Creevy’s commercials
  • Shifty soundtrack sampler
  • Theatrical Trailer

Disc 2 Extras (HMV Exclusive)

  • Over 100 minutes of Extended Interviews with Cast & Crew
  • Riz Ahmed, Sway, Plan B: SHIFTY (Uncut Version)
  • Scene Storyboards – See How The Key Scenes Were Brought To Life By The Filmmakers
  • The Complete SHIFTY Script

The Blu-ray has the 1-Disc extras.

*Listen to my interview with Eran Creevy and Daniel Mays*



13: Game of Death (Revolver)
All the Right Noises (BFI)
Delta (ICA)
East of Ipswich (2 Entertain)
From Within (E1 Entertainment)
Herostratus (BFI)
I Love You, Man (Paramount)
Ichi (Manga)
It Ain’t Half Hot Mum Series 7 (2 Entertain)
Man of Violence (aka Moon) (BFI)
Naruto Unleashed Series 7 Part 1 (Manga)
New Tricks Series 5 (Acorn)
Nous ne Vieillirons Pas Ensemble (Eureka/Masters of Cinema)
One Last Thing (Fremantle)
Passe ton bac d’abord (Eureka/Masters of Cinema)
Race to Witch Mountain (Disney)
Three Men in a Boat (2 Entertain)

> 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 21st August)


UK Cinema Releases: Friday 17th April 2009

UK Cinema Releases 17-04-09


I Love You Man (Paramount): Comedy about a newly engaged man (Paul Rudd) who realises he has no male friends and sets out to find a best man for his wedding. Although he didn’t work on it, this bears all the hallmarks of a Judd Apatow comedy as it stars two of his regular actors (Rudd and Jason Segel) and is directed by John Hamburg who worked on Undeclared. Some of it is a little predictable (e.g. pop culture references, geeky men getting in touch with their emotions) but the chemistry from the two leads works nicely and the laughs are fairly consistent throughout. [London & Nationwide / Cert 15]

Crank: High Voltage (Lionsgate): The sequel to the 2006 action film Crank sees Jason Statham reprise his role as Chev Chelios, a British hitman in LA who is forced to keep his adrenaline going after being poisoned. This one picks up straight after and Chelios has his heart stolen (!) by a gang of rougue Chinese medics and must keep shocking himself with regular jolts of electricity to keep himself alive. Written and directed by Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor, it is as mindlessly enjoyable as the first one and a cut above the Transporter films. [Nationwide / Cert 15]

In The Loop (Optimum Releasing): A spin off from the BBC TV series The Thick of It, this political satire sees the US president and Prime Minister want to declare another war and follows the people behind the scenes who have to spin the message to the public. It stars Tom HollanderJames GandolfiniChris AddisonPeter CapaldiGina McKeeSteve Coogan and was written and directed by Armando Iannucci. [Odeons Camden & Kensington, Vue Shepherds Bush & Nationwide / Cert 15]

Not Easily Broken (Sony Pictures): The story of couple (Morris Chestnut and Taraji P. Henson) whose marriage is tested after one of them is hurt in a car crash. Directed by Bill Duke from T.D. Jakes‘s novel Not Easily Broken. [London & Nationwide / Cert PG]



Good (Lionsgate): A film adaptation of the play by C. P. Taylor, which is the story of John Halder (Viggo Mortensen), a German literature professor in the 1930s, who slowly accepts the ideas of the Nazi Party. It co-stars  Jason Isaacs and Jodie Whittaker and was directed by Vicente Amorim. [Curzon Mayfair & Key Cities / Cert 15]

In Search Of Beethoven (Seventh Art Productions): The first truly comprehensive feature length cinema documentary ever made about Beethoven, with over 60 live performances. Directed by Phil Grabsky. [All Saints Arts Ctre, Barbican, Phoenix & Key Cities / Cert U] 

Before I Forget (Peccadillo Pictures): A 2007 French film directed by Jacques Nolot about a 58-year-old man battling his inner demons on the search for self-discovery. [ICA Cinema & Key Cities]

Check out the UK cinema releases for April 2009
Our latest DVD picks (W/C Monday 13th April) 


UK Release Date for In The Loop

In the Loop

A UK release date has been announced for In the Loop, the political satire which played to considerable acclaim at Sundance recently.

It will open the Glasgow Film Festival on February 12th and will be released nationwide by Optimum Releasing on Friday 17th  April.

Directed by Armando Iannucci, it is a loose spinoff of the TV series The Thick of It and stars Tom HollanderJames GandolfiniChris AddisonPeter CapaldiGina McKee and Steve Coogan.

Here is the official press release:

Optimum Releasing presents IN THE LOOP, a devastatingly sharp political comedy from the reigning king of satire, writer and director Armando Iannucci (The Thick of It, The Day Today, Knowing Me, Knowing You with Alan Partridge).

Following its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, IN THE LOOP will open the Glasgow Film Festival on February 12th 2009 and will be opening in cinemas across the United Kingdom on April 17th 2009.

IN THE LOOP is a foul-mouthed comedy that draws on non-specific events to create a world that is terrifyingly familiar: The US President and UK Prime Minister fancy a war, but not everyone agrees that war is a ‘good thing’. US General Miller (James Gandolfini) certainly doesn’t think so and neither does the British Secretary of State for International Development, Simon Foster (Tom Hollander).

But when the mild-mannered minister inadvertently appears to back the war on prime-time television, he immediately attracts the attention of the PM’s venomously aggressive communications chief Malcolm Tucker (reprised from The Thick of It by Peter Capaldi), who latches onto him like a hawk. Soon, the Brits are in Washington, where diplomatic relations collide with trans-Atlantic spin doctors and Foster’s off-hand remark quickly spirals into an insurmountable ‘mountain of conflict’.

Foster quickly becomes the oblivious plaything of the US and British government, on the one side by Malcolm Tucker, on the other by paranoid US Assistant Secretary for Diplomacy Karen Clarke (Mimi Kennedy) and her ambitious intern Liza Weld (Anna Chlumsky). The loyal British delegation at Foster’s side consists largely of his new aide Toby (comedian Chris Addison), whose inept attempts to preserve his job are matched only by his hapless bid to sleep with US intern Liza.

Meanwhile, the minister’s efficient and thoroughly skeptical Director of Communications Judy (Gina McKee) has been left behind in London to deal with the breaking story of an angry constituent and his collapsing garden wall (Steve Coogan). It soon becomes clear that the light at the end of Simon Foster’s tunnel is likely to be an oncoming ballistic missile.

Armando Iannucci reunites the award-winning writing team behind The Thick of It, bringing together collaborative writers Jesse Armstrong and Simon Blackwell (The Old Guys, The Thick of It, Peep Show), Tony Roche (The Thick of It, Alistair McGowan’s Big Impression), producers Adam Tandy (The Thick of It, I’m Alan Partridge, The Armando Iannucci Shows) and Kevin Loader (History Boys, Brideshead Revisited).

IN THE LOOP is shot in a pseudo-documentary style, incorporating Iannucci’s infamous improvisational techniques, creating an unforgiving, lightning-fast comedy peppered with razor-sharp expletives, which gives a frighteningly uncomfortable sense of how things really might be.

This is a Sundance Channel report on the premiere:

> In the Loop at the IMDb
> The Guardian and The Times report on the reaction at Sundance


Sundance 2009: In The Loop

Above are some interviews from the Sundance premiere of In The Loop which is a new satire directed by Armando Iannucci.

It is a loose spinoff of the TV series The Thick of It, and stars stars Tom HollanderJames GandolfiniChris AddisonPeter CapaldiGina McKee and Steve Coogan.