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Yakuza action horror and subterranean graboids from Arrow in December

25 September 2020

Arrow Video and Arrow Academy are to deliver a sackful of cineaste stocking fillers this Christmas, with the already detailed collection of three films from Japanese auteur Imamura Shohei, an extraordinary action horror that redefined the genre, and the definitive edition of a beloved horror comedy on Blu-ray and UHD, in a seriously impressive -looking box set. This is a tinsel wrapped lineup that includes an HD debut, alternative cuts, brand new audio commentaries, fascinating documentaries and featurettes, perfect bound books, posters and reproduction lobby cards, not to mention new sleeve artwork, and lavish packaging.

As well as Survivor Ballads: Three Films by Shohei Imamura on the Arrow Academy label (see news story here), Arrow Video will be releasing Japanese action-horror Versus on Blu-ray and a feature-packed UHD release of witty cult horror Tremors.

 

Versus Blu-ray cover art

VERSUS (2000) | Blu-ray | 7 December 2020 | £24.99

A relentless one-of-a-kind sensory assault chock-full of hyper-kinetic fight scenes, gangster shootouts, sword-slashing violence and gory zombie horror, Versus was a key title amongst the barrage of innovative horror and action movies that appeared as if from nowhere from Japan at the turn of the millennium, leading to a new wave of appreciation for Asian extreme cinema.

A mysterious face-off in a wooded clearing between two escaped convicts and a carload of sharply dressed yakuza holding a beautiful woman captive ends in hails of bullets and showers of blood. The location for this violent encounter is the mythic Forest of Resurrection, the site of the 444th portal of the 666 hidden gates that link this earthly domain to the netherworld – and it didn’t get this name for nothing. As one of the surviving prisoners escapes with the girl into the darkness of the forest, disgruntled gangsters soon become the least of their worries as an earlier battle between a lone warrior against hordes of zombie samurai is carried over from a millennium ago into the present day…

Versus caused a sensation both in Japan and internationally upon its release, launching the careers of director Ryûhei Kitamura (Godzilla Final Wars, Midnight Meat Train) and action star and fight choreographer Tak Sakaguchi (Battlefield Baseball, Yakuza Weapon). Arrow Video is proud to present this mythic cult title in both its original 2000 and expanded 2004 Ultimate Versus iterations, in a brand new, director-approved restoration.

SPECIAL EDITION CONTENTS:

  • Brand new 2K restoration from original film elements by Arrow Films, approved by director Ryûhei Kitamura
  • High Definition (1080p) Blu-ray presentations of both versions of the film: the original 2000 cut and 2004’s Ultimate Versus, featuring over 10 minutes of new and revised footage
  • Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Chris Malbon

DISC 1: VERSUS:

  • Original lossless Japanese 5.1 and 2.0 stereo audio and English 2.0 stereo audio
  • Optional English subtitles
  • Audio commentary by Kitamura and producer Keishiro Shin
  • Audio commentary by Kitamura and the cast and crew
  • New visual essay on the career of Kitamura by Japanese cinema expert Jasper Sharp
  • Behind Versus, a two-part behind-the-scenes documentaries exploring the film’s production
  • First Contact: Versus Evolution, a featurette exploring the film’s origins
  • Tak Sakaguchi’s One-Man Journey, an archival featurette on the actor’s visit to the 2001 Japan Film Festival in Hamburg
  • Film festival screening footage
  • Team Versus, a brief look inside the Napalm Films office
  • Deep in the Woods, an archival featurette featuring interviews with Kitamura, cast and crew
  • The Encounter, an archival interview with editor Shûichi Kakesu
  • Deleted scenes with audio commentary by Kitamura, cast and crew
  • Nervous and Nervous 2, two “side story” mini-movies featuring characters from the main feature
  • Featurette on the making of Nervous 2
  • Versus FF Version, a condensed, 20-minute recut of the film
  • Multiple trailers
  • Image gallery

DISC 2: ULTIMATE VERSUS:

  • Original lossless Japanese 6.1 and 2.0 stereo audio and English 6.1 and 2.0 stereo audio
  • Optional English subtitles
  • Audio commentary by Kitamura, cast and crew
  • Sakigake! Otoko versus Juku, a featurette on the newly shot material for Ultimate Versus

FIRST PRESSING ONLY:

  • Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film and a reprinted interview with Kitamura by Tom Mes, and notes on the making of the film by Kitamura

Tremors UHD pack shot

TREMORS (1990) | 4K UHD Blu-ray | 14 December 2020 | £34.99

A pulse-pounding love letter to 1950s creature features that delivers horror and humour in equal measure, Tremors is a bonafide cult classic that has grabbed audiences’ affections ever since its release and spawned a successful franchise that continues to this day.

Good-ol’-boy handymen Val (Kevin Bacon) and Earl (Fred Ward) are sick of their dead-end jobs in one-horse desert town Perfection, Nevada (population: 14). Just as they’re about to escape Perfection forever, however, things start to get really weird: half-eaten corpses litter the road out of town; the phone lines stop working; and a plucky young scientist shows evidence of unusually strong seismic activity in the area. Something is coming for the citizens of Perfection… and it’s under the goddamn ground!

Bursting with indelible characters, quotable dialogue and jaw-dropping special effects, Tremors is back and bigger than ever in this 4K-restored and fully loaded collectors’ edition.

4K ULTRA HD BLU-RAY SPECIAL EDITION CONTENTS:

  • New 4K restoration from the original negative by Arrow Films, approved by director Ron Underwood and director of photography Alexander Gruszynski
  • 60-page perfect-bound book featuring new writing by Kim Newman and Jonathan Melville and selected archive materials
  • Large fold-out double-sided poster featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Matt Frank
  • Small fold-out double-sided poster featuring new Graboid X-ray art by Matt Frank
  • Six double-sided, postcard-sized lobby card reproduction artcards
  • Limited Edition packaging with reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Matt Frank

DISC 1 – FEATURE & EXTRAS (4K UHD BLU-RAY):

  • 4K (2160p) UHD Blu-ray presentation in Dolby Vision (HDR10 compatible)
  • Restored DTS-HD MA original theatrical 2.0 stereo, 4.0 surround, and remixed 5.1 surround audio options
  • Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • New audio commentary by director Ron Underwood and writers/producers Brent Maddock & S.S.Wilson
  • New audio commentary by Jonathan Melville, author of Seeking Perfection: The Unofficial Guide to Tremors
  • Making Perfection, a brand new documentary by Universal Pictures interviewing key cast and crew from the franchise (including Kevin Bacon, Michael Gross, Ariana Richards, Ron Underwood, Brent Maddock & S.S. Wilson, among many others) and revisiting the original locations
  • The Truth About Tremors, a newly filmed interview with co-producer Nancy Roberts on the film’s rocky road to the screen
  • Bad Vibrations, a newly filmed interview with director of photography Alexander Gruszynski
  • Aftershocks and Other Rumblings, newly filmed on-set stories from associate producer Ellen Collett
  • Digging in the Dirt, a new featurette interviewing the crews behind the film’s extensive visual effects
  • Music for Graboids, a new featurette on the film’s music with composers Ernest Troost and Robert Folk
  • Pardon My French!, a newly assembled compilation of overdubs from the edited-for television version
  • The Making of Tremors, an archive documentary from 1995 by Laurent Bouzereau, interviewing the filmmakers and special effects teams
  • Creature Featurette, an archive compilation of on-set camcorder footage showing the making of the Graboids
  • Electronic press kit featurette and interviews with Kevin Bacon, Michael Gross and Reba McEntire
  • Deleted scenes, including the original opening scene
  • Theatrical trailers, TV and radio spots for the original film as well as trailers for the entire Tremors franchise
  • Comprehensive image galleries, including rare behind-the-scenes stills, storyboards and two different drafts of the screenplay

DISC 2 – INTERVIEWS & SHORT FILMS (BLU-RAY - LIMITED EDITION EXCLUSIVE):

  • Extended hour-long interviews from Making Perfection with Ron Underwood, Brent Maddock, S.S.Wilson, Nancy Roberts and creature designer Alec Gillis
  • Outtakes with optional introduction and commentary by S.S. Wilson
  • Three early short films by the makers of Tremors, remastered in high definition, including S.S.Wilson’s stop-motion horror/comedy classic Recorded Live (1975)