Film Commentaries - Advice/Favorites

Discussion in 'General' started by baggio, Feb 23, 2017.

  1. baggio

    baggio Well-Known Member

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    Three part question:

    What was the first movie commentary track you listened to from a DVD/Blu?

    What are some of your favorite movie commentary tracks?
    It can be from ANY genre. Doesn't have to be just
    horror.

    If any, what commentaries would you rate poorly and suggest to not bother with?




    I'm asking to get ideas on ones to listen too. Myself I really don't use that special feature on DVD/Blu all that often. Nothing against them at all, but sometimes time is of issue, and if I'm gonna spend the 2 hours, I'm gonna take just watching the movie normally rather than with the different audios. Sometimes I switch over on specific scenes. I'll rewind then watch a scene again to see if the audio track mentions anything.

    For me, my first commentary I listened to was Urban Legend (1988) It was for no particular reason other than trying out the new feature. If I remember correctly, it was the director alone and he was extremely informative. Great insights to making the film, plus he had a good recording voice which was a plus.


    My favorite (again, like I said I don't listen to many) was for the film Used Cars (1980) It's Robert Zemeckis, Bob Gale, and Kurt Russell. Dare I say it's as funny as the movie. The three of them were cracking up reminiscing about the filming of the movie. The littlest funny details that Russell was doing in scenes brings a new insight when watching the film again.


    What say you?
     
  2. Angelman

    Angelman OCD Blu Ray Collector

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    My first was maybe Airplane! As I bought that with my first DVD player.

    Funniest is maybe Mallrats - just loose, jokey. I like the movie but the commentary is a blast.

    My favorite is probably Tim Lucas on Blood and Black Lace. I love the movie but his passion comes through and is jam packed with insight and history. It really makes the movie come alive.

    Worst? Too many to list. Just... Most are bad, and unstructured.

    The weirdest was one - a Bigfoot movie, where clearly the director did not know the producers had changed the title of his film and was heartbroken since it gave the film's essence away. But he learned it in real time doing the commentary.
     
  3. CPT HOOK

    CPT HOOK Well-Known Member

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    I think Jack-O is one of the more notorious commentaries out there.
     
  4. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    LOVE a good commentary.

    My faves/recommendations:

    -C.H.U.D. with director Douglas Creek, Story writer Shepherd Abbot and Actors Daniel Stern, John Heard and Chris Curry
    -Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2 with Director Lee Harry, Screenwriter Joseph Earle and Actor James Newman
    -Evil Dead II with director Sam Raimi, Screenwriter Scott Spiegal, Actor Bruce Campbell and Effects guy Greg Nicotero
    -From Beyond with Director Stuart Gordon, Producer Brian Yuzna, Actor Jeffrey Combs and Actress Barbara Crampton
    -Howling II with Director Philippe Mora. Moderated by Michael Felsher.
    -Bordello of Blood with Screenwriter A.L. Katz.
    -Slumber Party Massacre III with Director Sally Mattison and Actresses Brandi Burkett and Hope Marie Carlton. Moderated by Tony Brown.
    -Puppet Master III with Director David DeCoteau and Screenwriter C. Courtney Joyner.
    -Frankenhooker with Director Frank Henenlotter and effects guy Gabe Bartalos.
    -Faces of Death with Director Conan Le Cilaire. Moderated by Michael Felsher.
    -Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 with Actor Bill Moseley, Actress Caroline Williams and effects guy Tom Savini. Moderated by Michael Felsher.
    -The Thing with Director John Carpenter and actor Kurt Russell.


    There's a ton more but I'll just leave it here for now.


    EDIT: Cpt Hook is right on about the Jack O track.
     
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  5. Eddyw78

    Eddyw78 Member

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    I don't always listen now as I don't often have time unless I'm reviewing the disc. Some of the first I listened to off the top of my head were on the old Anchor Bay DVDs of the Ilsa movies which were good fun and some of the Italian horror releases such as Zombi 2. I always try and listen to any of Tom Savini's (Blue Underground's release of The Prowler was a favourite). I also like to listen to any that were childhood favourite movies so things like Highlander and the The African Queen spring to mind.
    Strangest was on the Scream Factory BD of The Serpent and the Rainbow were Bill Pullman disappeared about 50 minutes in.
     
  6. Natas

    Natas Is it October yet?

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    I don't watch commentaries. Ever. But one time at my buddies house, he tossed in Birdemic and we listed to the commentary from the director........ which is absolutely hysterical. He pretty much just makes fun of his movie for the entire duration.
     
  7. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    Well Natas my goonie lovin' fiend you don't watch commentaries...you listen to them!

    But you're missing out big time. I could never understand some people's hatred for them. Oh well. More for me.
     
  8. baggio

    baggio Well-Known Member

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    Have a lot of those movies. Glad to know there's some gems there.
     
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  9. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    I'll think of some non horror ones tonight. I've listened to so many it's hard to remember them all.
     
  10. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    one of my favorites is Edgar Wright and Quentin Tarantino on Hot Fuzz. Because they don't talk about Hot Fuzz AT ALL. It's just the two of them shootin' the shit about movies for two hours.
     
  11. Natas

    Natas Is it October yet?

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    LOL you got me.......

    I don't hate them, just never bothered or had any interest really. I watched, correction LISTENED to the Superbad commentary once, after I had watched the movie 30-40 times and Seth was a riot.
     
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  12. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    That's a good one.
     
  13. Natas

    Natas Is it October yet?

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    I might have mentioned this before on another thread pertaining to commentaries.....but on the Superbad one, Seth briefly mentioned taking mushrooms and watching Super Babies: Baby Geniuses 2. And I shit you not, like 6 days prior to me hearing that, I had done the EXACT same thing. My mind was utterly blown.
     
  14. Harry Warden

    Harry Warden Well-Known Member

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    Holy shit dude. Impressive. Where do you find the time? I've only ever listened to a few.
     
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  15. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    I have a lot of time on my hands these days due to my surgery back in September. What better way to spend than listening to some rad tracks!

    I'd also add any commentary with Lloyd Kaufman is great. Informative and hilarious.
     
  16. Matt89

    Matt89 Well-Known Member

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    The commentary on the Anchor Bay DVD of Hell Night is fantastic. It was one of the first commentaries I ever listened to, and probably the one that got me into commentaries.

    The Criterion commentary on the LD of Carrie is amazing, too bad they couldn't get the rights to it to include it on the Shout blu-ray.

    I generally enjoy a John Carpenter commentary (the one with him and Jamie Lee on the 35th Ann edition of Halloween is annoying though).

    Woody Allen also does some incredible comm---oh yeah. Nevermind.

    ~Matt
     
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  17. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    Hell Night's is indeed fantastic!

    More:

    -Witchboard w/ Director Kevin Tenney and Producers Walter Josten and Gerald Geoffray.
    -Night of the Creeps w/ Director Fred Dekker. Moderated by Michael Felsher.
    -Scream w/ Director Wes Craven and Screenwriter Kevin Williamson
    -Child's Play w/ Screenwriter Don Mancini and Producer David Kirschner
    -Psycho III w/ Screenwriter Charles Edward Pogue. Moderated by Michael Felsher.
    -Thou Shalt Not Kill...Except w/ Director Josh Becker and Bruce Campbell.
    -Bubba Ho-Tep w/ Director Don Coscarelli and Bruce Campbell.
    -Prom Night w/ Director Paul Lynch and Screenwriter William Gray.
    -Zombie Nightmare w/ Co-director/writer John Fasano and Actors Frank Dietz and Jon Mikl Thor
     
  18. Paff

    Paff Super Moderator

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    of course, both of the I Spit on your Grave commentaries are must- listens. Meir Zarchi basically reads some extensive essays he wrote about the film, the inspiration behind it, the making-of, and its infamous reputation. And Joe Bob Briggs is hilarious (though respectful enough to tone down the jokes during the rape sequence)
     
  19. MisterTwister

    MisterTwister The Schlock King

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    Joe Bob Briggs' commentaries on Samurai Cop and Blood Sisters is a must listen as well.

    Sadly Brigg's Samurai Cop commentary is only available on the old Media Blasters DVD and was never imported over to the newer dvd and blu.
     
  20. DVD-fanatic-9

    DVD-fanatic-9 And the Next Morning, When the Campers Woke Up...

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    John Waters' solo director's commentary on Pecker (1998).


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    Gremlins 2: The New Batch - Joe Dante, Mike Finnell (producer), Charles Haas (screenwriter), Zach Galligan

    Pecker, again.

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    The Evil Dead - Bruce Campbell solo commentary; a classic

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    Heathers - Michael Lehman, Denise Di Novi, Daniel Waters

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    Masters of Horror: The Screwfly Solution - Joe Dante, Sam Hamm (writer)

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    The Bird with the Crystal Plumage - Alan Jones (journalist), Kim Newman (author). Endless information, all of it valuable.

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    Scream 3 - Wes Craven, Marianne Maddalena (co-producer), Patrick Lussier (editor). Almost all Wes Craven commentaries are excellent. This one, among all I've heard, is the funniest.

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    Cabin Fever - Eli Roth solo. Say what you want about the guy, but Eli Roth does a good commentary.

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    The In-Crowd (2000) - Susan Ward, Lori Heuring. Probably the funniest, most spastic, random commentary I've ever heard.

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    Dolls (MGM DVD commentary) - Stuart Gordon and screenwriter Ed Naha. I actually like the cast commentary though I've heard complaints about it. But, this is easily one of the best commentaries I've ever heard, bar none. Ed Naha is fucking HILARIOUS.

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    American Psycho - screenwriter Guinevere Turner

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    Bride of Chucky - cast commentary. 2 words: Jennifer Tilly.

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    UHF - Weird Al literally gives you street addresses for every single location the film shot at and runs through the box office results of 1989 and all the films which were more successful. "And then one morning, I woke up and... there were no strawberries. The strawberries were gone." "I'll give you some strawberries, Al!"

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    Mommie Dearest - John Waters' commentary. He usually is better on his director commentary tracks but this one was very amusing.

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    Vamp - Anchor Bay commentary with director, Dedee Pfeiffer, Chris Makepeace, Gedde Watanabe

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    The Last House on the Left - Wes Craven, Sean Cunningham (2002 DVD commentary); forget the cast commentary, this is the one to listen to

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    Likely any director's commentary you can get your hands on from Richard Stanley. Dust Devil's the only one I've stayed through thus far but he's like an encyclopedia of fascinating info. I don't recall a single moment of silence.

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    Any Tim Lucas commentary on Mario Bava's films tends to get a glowing recommendation from anyone who is more interested in film buff commentaries, I've heard and recommend both Bay of Blood and Lisa and the Devil.

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    The Simpsons: Season 4 - I've only listened to about 5 or 6 of the 20-something episode commentaries so far, but based on those- I would say this is the best season for commentaries.

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    Freeway (1996) - Matthew Bright director's commentary.

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    There's Nothing Out There - director and cast commentary. This was probably a great listen for me because it's one of my favorite movies, but if you know the movie well- every bit of information on it is like crack.

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    Videodrome - James Woods / Debbie Harry hybrid commentary

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    Hellraiser - Clive Barker, Ashley Laurence, Pete Atkins

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    The Howling - Joe Dante and cast

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    Halloween - Criterion Collection commentary (ported over to Anchor Bay's 25th Anniversary Edition) with Carpenter, Debra Hill, Jamie Lee Curtis

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    A Nightmare on Elm Street - Wes Craven, Heather Langenkamp, Jacques Haitkin



    #1. Anything with Tim Burton on it. I love the guy's films (well, before 2000). But he is the single most boring person you will ever hear on a commentary. I've tried to get through Batman, Batman Returns, and Sleepy Hollow... Failed all 3 times.

    2. I was pretty excited to listen to the Misery audio commentaries, of which I believe there are multiple. I remember shutting both down early. A lot of gaps of silence and just not much going on.

    3. ...Can't think of anymore now. I'll see what I come up with later.
     
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