This Week in DVD & Blu-ray is a column that compiles all the latest info regarding new DVD and Blu-ray releases, sales, and exclusive deals from stores including Target, Best Buy and Fry’s.

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(Available as single-disc DVD, 2-Disc Special Edition DVD, and 2-Disc Special Edition Blu-ray)
“You know somethin’? I think this might just be my masterpiece.” That’s a mighty audacious claim that Tarantino not-so-subtly injects in Inglourious Basterds, his self-proclaimed World War II spaghetti western, but he earns the hell out of it. The film plays like a masterfully calibrated collection of short films, with each lengthy, deliberately paced scene—usually featuring nothing more than a number of characters sitting around a table talking—building up with excruciating intensity until finally reaching a breaking point, resulting in a delirious climax that repeatedly left me an exhausted mess. Together, these sequences add up to an endlessly thrilling viewing experience, with the overall narrative providing one of the more fascinating tales from the past decade. Everything there is to love about Tarantino is on full display here, from his ruthlessly clever dialogue to his brilliantly realized characters to his eclectic soundtrack selection and so on. Even though the movie is undeniably an exploitation film, there’s also a brain behind the madness. Instead of merely reveling in the slaughtering of Nazis (although there’s plenty of that too), Tarantino presents an interesting moral balance between all of the characters, including the comedically shameless Basterds and several almost (almost) sympathetic Nazi victims. Acting as somewhat of an examination of good and evil—or more specifically, what it means to be an evil person—Inglourious Basterds constantly plays on audience expectations for what its characters are capable of, using Hans Landa as its reference point for the true face of evil. This aspect is thankfully not pronounced aggressively enough to detract from the film for those that hope to appreciate it on a purely superficial level, but like the film’s obscure, carefully placed movie references, it’s there to be observed for those interested in looking. Two more things: Christoph Waltz’s performance is astounding, and the film’s ending is a stroke of pure, unbridled genius. Rock on, Tarantino. You made the best damn movie of the year.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: Single-disc DVD – Extended and alternate scenes, and the Nation’s Pride film. 2-disc DVD & Blu-ray – Includes everything on the single-disc DVD, as well as a Roundtable Discussion with Quentin Tarantino, Brad Pitt and film historian/critic Elvis Mitchell, featurettes (“Making of Nation’s Pride”, “The Original Inglorious Bastards”, “Rod Taylor on Victoria Bitters – the Australian Beer”, “Quentin Tarantino’s Camera Angel”), a conversation with actor Rod Taylor, a gag reel, a Film Poster Gallery Tour with Elvis Mitch, and a digital copy.

TargetBest BuyFry’s
Amazon – $15.99

*Does not include 2-Disc Edition, which costs $21.49 at Amazon, $22.99 at Best Buy, and $24.99 at Target (see below).

TargetBest BuyFry’s
Amazon – $17.99

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I’m currently trying to figure out my top ten list of 2009, but one film that I knew was going to be there from the moment I saw it was Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds. I’ve yet to see some of the bigger releases this month, but as of this moment Basterds is definitely my favorite film of the year (I’m not saying it’s the outright best film this year — at least, not yet). I’m confident that this film will be analyzed for years to come because there’s definitely a lot going on underneath all the Nazi killing.

One very personal piece was recently written by Eli Roth’s father, Sheldon Roth, for the Jewish Journal. The piece concerns Roth’s final moments in the film, and is definitely spoiler filled right from the title.

Some excerpts, and more spoilers, after the break.

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Talk of an Inglourious Basterds prequel is nothing new. Back in June we reported on a GQ interview where Harvey Weinstein talked about the vast amounts of material Tarantino had prepped for Basterds, much of which could be compiled into other films and projects. Word was that the next film would be about a squad of African American soldiers that come across the Basterds. Now we have news that Brad Pitt is actually pushing for the prequels from the unlikeliest of sources: A wacky Japanese food show.

Check out a clip of Pitt and Tarantino on the show after the break.

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gamer2In this week’s /Filmcast, Dave Chen, Devindra Hardawar and Adam Quigley reflect on the prospect of a fifth Rambo film, assess the merits of Mike Judge’s Extract and Robert Siegel’s Big Fan, and try to dissect the Boondock Saints phenomenon. Special guest Jordan Hoffman joins us from UGO Movieblog.

You can always e-mail us at slashfilmcast(AT)gmail(DOT)com, or call and leave a voicemail at 781-583-1993. Join us next Monday at 9 PM EST / 6 PM PST at Slashfilm’s live page as we review Shane Acker’s 9.

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The art of painted poster art is dying. I think back to all the wonderful movies from my childhood, and every one of them was majestic. I can remember such beautiful art by Drew Struzan, Frank McCarthy, Bill Gold, Jack David, Richard Amsel, Tom Jung, Bob Peak and others. And I don’t mean to sound all, “back in my day everything was better…” but the age of photoshop and floating heads has made the art of movie posters a lot less interesting to me. When a beautifully hand-crafted poster comes along, we celebrate it. In the past couple years, Drew Struzan has created some great art for Hellboy II and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, and featured many other artists in past editions of Cool Stuff.

Today I bring you a poster I’ve been meaning to feature for a couple weeks now – a poster that illustrator James Goodridge put together for Quentin Tarantino‘s Inglourious Basterds, which was obviously never used (hence the lack of logo, and usual billing titles). Of course, The Weinstein Co opted to stick Brad Pitt on the poster with the tagline “Brad Pitt is a Basterd” a smarter bet to attract more ticket sales. But this is wonderful art, and I hope they use it in the special edition release of the movie on DVD/Blu-ray.

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Tyler Stout's Inglourious Basterds PosterIn this week’s /Filmcast, Dave Chen, Devindra Hardawar and Adam Quigley debate the merits of Terry Gilliam’s 12 Monkeys, reflect on the Avatar trailer/hype, try to figure out what a new director means for the Bioshock film, and lament the financial state of the entertainment industry. Special guest director Nicholas Jasenovec joins us for this episode. Nick’s film, Paper Heart, starring Charlyne Yi, is out in theaters now.

You can always e-mail us at slashfilmcast(AT)gmail(DOT)com, or call and leave a voicemail at 781-583-1993. Join us next Monday at 10 PM EST / 7 PM PST at Slashfilm’s live page for our next broadcast.

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VOTD: Quentin Tarantino on Charlie Rose

zz172888c2 Quentin Tarantino recorded an hour long interview with Charlie Rose last week to promote Inglourious Basterds. Readers of the site know that I love long form interviews with good filmmakers. You can download the WMV video file of the interview right now by clicking here. The streaming version on Google Video doesn’t appear to be working yet (but I’ve also included that after the jump). And while I’m at it, why not include the rest of Tarantino’s Charlie Rose interview appearances from the last 15 years? Yes, those are available after the jump as well.

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The following introduction and interview contain moderate spoilers.

When a new film from Quentin Tarantino is released, a film as original and awash in genre-geometry as Inglourious Basterds, the post-viewing sensation that follows remains difficult to describe. In Kill Bill Vol. 1, there is a scene set inside the House of Blue Leaves in which Uma Thurman’s Bride blinks and the film switches from black and white to color. A sizable light switch is then thrown by a yakuza. In seconds, the screen turns a cool midnight blue. At that moment the aural equivalent of digital goosebumps chimes unusually through the speakers. Now everything on screen appears the same but is different, renergized and alive. I remember watching this scene and realizing that it inexplicably captures how I feel after a QT film; the difference being that the sensation of a QT film is not flicked instantaneously; it spreads over the following weeks and months as if by a potent time-release capsule. In addition, as this sensation is occuring at a personal level, Tarantino’s characters and images are similarly infiltrating and titillating the collective mind of endless media, fellow cinephiles, and general moviegoers. Pop-culture synapses connect further until a single Tarantino character is loaded into the permanent highlight reel of a respective year, for film or otherwise. It’s the lysergic, symbiotic propaganda of a true genius.

In this way, Inglourious Basterds is no different from Tarantino’s superlative works: the character that will be remembered in bold fashion is Colonel Hans Landa aka The Jew Hunter, the primary villain in Basterds. Moreover, international viewers, and American viewers especially, will come to remember their surprise introduction to the masterful talent embodying Landa, the Austrian actor Christoph Waltz. His career spanning some 30 years, primarily in theatre and television, Waltz’s performance as the erudite, calculating, and predatory Nazi colonel—a fictional Tarantino creation—is all but guaranteed a Best Supporting Actor nomination. This /Film staffer predicts “a bingo.” If a timely parallel need be drawn to exemplify the breakout performance by this veteran actor—a role that plants the seeds for a long, prosperous career—it would be that of Jackie Earle Haley in Little Children. During his whirlwind of publicity, Quentin Tarantino, doting even for Tarantino, has praised Waltz and his character with the following…

“You gave me my movie.” – to Waltz at the Cannes Film Festival, where he won Best Actor

“Hans Landa is one of the greatest characters I have ever written, and one of the greatest characters that I will ever write.”

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Inglourious Basterds

The Weinstein Co have pulled out a win, just when they needed it. Quentin Tarantino‘s Inglourious Basterds won this weekend at the box office, taking in an estimated $37.6 million domestically and $27.5 million internationally for a worldwide weekend total of $65.1 million. That is enough to top Kill Bill: Volume 2 as Tarantino’s highest box office opening to date. Top five studio estimates are available after the jump.
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