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New on Disc: 'Help!' Blu-ray and more

1 Jul, 2013 By: Mike Clark

Help! (Blu-ray)

Universal Music, Comedy, $29.98 Blu-ray, NR.
Stars The Beatles, Leo McKern, Eleanor Bron.
There definitely is a nostalgic kick to seeing the Beatles in color (even Eastman Color) after the black-and-white of A Hard Day’s Night — and watching them perform several very strong tunes staged with director Richard Lester’s standard ingenuity. In contrast to Night’s quasi-documentary structure, Help! brandishes a fairly loony concept about a despotic religious sect leader (Leo McKern) who covets one of Ringo’s rings. This is the kind of movie where smiles are constant without the guffaws to stoke them, but the numbers are something else again. The restoration crew claimed in 2007 that the DVD looked as good, and probably better, than 1965 prints. Blu-ray ups this ante, and the sound is imposing for its day.
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The Only Game in Town

Available via www.ScreenArchives.com
Twilight Time, Drama, $29.95 Blu-ray, NR.
Stars Elizabeth Taylor, Warren Beatty.
This predominantly two-person indoor romance is actually a fairly enjoyable little movie that has mellowed some over the decades. Beatty plays a compulsive gambler and cocktail pianist who keeps blowing the nest egg that’s supposed to get him to New York, forcing him to become an unlikely roommate with a woman who has finally gotten a bit wary of waiting around for her more moneyed suitor to divorce his wife. Though there’s some grain here that’s probably representative of its 1970 appearance, occasional scenes brandish old-school Hollywood glamour, including a pleasing final shot shared by two performers who apparently brought full conviction to the project.
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