DVDs & Blu-rays: Jaws Remastered, a Breathless Giveaway, and Much More

Categories: Film and TV

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Jaws stars Roy Scheider, Robert Shaw and Richard Dreyfuss; Steven Spielberg directs.

Universal has been cranking out Blu-ray releases of its most treasured films as it celebrates its 100th anniversary. This week it's the Steven Spielberg classic Jaws. The highly anticipated release features a completely remastered and fully restored film and 7.1 surround sound, all done in conjunction with Spielberg and Amblin Entertainment's postproduction team.

Jaws launched the summer blockbuster phenomenon back in 1975 when it hit theaters, and the story of a monster shark that terrorizes a small beach town and the three men who set out to destroy it (Roy Scheider as the town's chief of police, Robert Shaw as a tough-as-nails shark hunter and Richard Dreyfuss as a marine biologist) still resonates with viewers. But thanks to careful restoration, the shark is seen in six times the resolution of previous DVD releases (the better to see its huge, sharp teeth) and the ocean is blue again (the images had deteriorated to a mushy yellow). The Blu-ray/DVD combo is packed with extras, including The Shark Is Still Working: The Impact & Legacy of Jaws, a feature-length documentary of never-before-seen footage and interviews with Spielberg, Scheider and Dreyfuss, The Making of Jaws, a two-hour documentary filled with interviews with the cast and crew, deleted scenes, the original theatrical trailer and lots more.

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Breathless stars Gina Gershon, Kelli Giddish, Val Kilmer and Ray Liotta; Jesse Baget writes and directs.

You'll notice that Lorna (played by Gina Gershon) didn't even bother to take the pins off the clothesline before she tied up her no-account husband Dale (Val Kilmer). That's to be expected, since she's in a bit of a hurry. Seems Dale, a petty thief with no real talent for crime, has managed to rob a local bank, getting away with some $100,000 in cash. Low-life that he is, he didn't bother to tell his wife Lorna about his big score. Doesn't matter; she figured it out. Now, with the help of her ditsy friend Tiny (Kelli Giddish), she plans on finding the loot and cutting herself in. Trouble is, Dale is a hardheaded son of a bitch. He won't tell her where he's hidden it. Hence the need to tie Dale to a chair while she threatens him with a pistol. Of course, it doesn't take a genius to figure out that this isn't going to end well. And it doesn't. Before long, Dale's dead, Lorna and Tiny are splattered with blood, and there's a sheriff (Ray Liotta) knocking on the door. Out comes the electric knife and the two women set about cutting Dale up into pieces small enough to dispose of without arousing suspicion from the nosy lawman.

Oh, did we mention this all happens in a trashy trailer in the middle of Nowhere, Texas?

Writer/director Jesse Baget's created broad, over-the-top characters for his newest black comedy, Breathless. And he's given his very talented cast free rein to take the audience on a rip-roaring ride, which they gleefully do. There's nothing poignant or deep about Breathless. This is just bigger-than-life fun, marked by a Texas twang. Extras on the Blu-ray/DVD combo pack include audio commentary with Baget and producer Christine Holder, along with a Making of Breathless featurette.

We've got three Blu-ray/DVD combo pack copies of Breathless to give out to lucky readers. To enter the giveaway, just send an e-mail to olivia.alvarez@houstonpress.com. Please include the phrase "Breathless giveaway" in the subject line. Winners will be randomly drawn on Friday. Please note, you must live in the United States to participate.

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