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In Memoriam 2020: Remembering Those We Lost In Entertainment
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With 2021 finally dawned upon us, it brings a new beginning to what was for sure one of the most tumultuous years in anyone’s recent memory in the year 2020, with a plethora of events that occurred (and many still recurring) that need no repeating. We all know of what went down and what’s going on, things which have spilled over and are still extreme challenges in this new year. In short, 2020 was a year most of, if not all, of us would soon rather forget.

However, what shouldn’t be forgotten are the names of the many luminaries in entertainment that we lost last year, also a stunning amount of creatives and well-knowns of seemingly every type and stripe. While in a lot of ways an “in memoriam” list seems rather arbitrary and irrelevant considering the hundreds of thousands of lives lost in the United States alone last year during the pandemic and of people who became global martyrs by way of insurrectional behaviors by authoritative figures all across America, a list like this becomes in a way necessary, as it’s important to give the proper respect and final send off to some of the individuals who touched our lives in so many ways, especially during last year, when all forms of entertainment became not only entrenched in its typical “escapism,” but also became a healing balm in a sense, something that helped people push through during the darkest times of necessary state and governmental-enforced bondage on us all. And it is for that reason, that we present some of our heroes, guiding lights, inspirations, and illuminations who left us in 2020.

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Blu-ray Review: Dreamscape (Collector’s Edition)
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Dreamscape
Blu-ray (Collector’s Edition)
Director: Joseph Ruben
Screenwriter: David Loughery, Chuck Russell, Joseph Ruben
Cast: Dennis Quaid, Max von Sydow, Christopher Plummer, Eddie Albert, Kate Capshaw, David Patrick Kelly
Distributor: Scream Factory
Rated PG-13 | 99 Minutes
Release Date: December 13, 2016

“So, Jane, what you do here, in effect, is count boners?”

Directed by Joseph Ruben (The Pom Pom Girls), 1984’s Dreamscape has the unique distinction of being the second film released to theaters that was rated PG-13 under then new MPAA ratings guidelines, following Red Dawn, which come out five days earlier. And interestingly enough, the film stars Kate Capeshaw, who starred in a violent PG-rated blockbuster that would help create the PG-13 rating: Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.

Co-written by Ruben, David Loughery (Star Trek V: The Final Frontier), and Chuck Russell (A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors, 1988’s The Blob), Dreamscape stars Dennis Quaid as Alex Gardner, a man with psychic abilities who is recruited by his old mentor, Dr. Novotny (Max von Sydow), to join the dreamscape project, a government-funded program to diagnose and treat sleep disorders.

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Blu-ray Review: Star Wars: The Force Awakens 3D Collector’s Edition
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Star Wars: The Force Awakens
3D Collector’s Edition Blu-ray
Writer: Lawrence Kasdan & J.J. Abrams and Michael Arndt
Director: J.J. Abrams
Cast: Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Lupita Nyong’o, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, Max von Sydow, Gwendoline Christie
Studio: Walt Disney Pictures
Release Date: November 15, 2016

Star Wars: The Force Awakens was one of my favorite movies of 2015, and is a film I’ve written a lot about here — bottom line, I love it! Does it have its flaws? Sure, but nothing that I feel hampers the enjoyment of watching it. While there are those who feel it’s a retread of the original trilogy, I believe that it’s a worthy addition to the Star Wars universe.

The film was released in Blu-ray back in April and included a host of bonus features that delved into the making of the sequel. But, sadly, it didn’t include feature-length audio commentary, which is an extra I love on home video releases, especially for an extravaganza like this. Now, Disney has released The Force Awakens as a 3D Blu-ray Collector’s Edition that does include commentary from J.J. Abrams, which to me makes this set worth getting. It also includes the original bonus features, along with several all-new featurettes. So, if you don’t already own this, definitely grab this collector’s edition.

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Blu-ray Review: Star Wars: The Force Awakens
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Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Blu-ray Combo Pack
Director: J.J. Abrams
Cast: Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Lupita Nyong’o, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, Max von Sydow, Gwendoline Christie
Studio: Walt Disney Pictures
Release Date: April 5, 2016

Star Wars: The Force Awakens began as my most anticipated movie of 2015 and ended being my favorite film of the year. While seeing director J.J. Abrams‘ newest installment in the Star Wars franchise in IMAX was a delight, viewing the film in Blu-ray at home multiple times was just as entertaining. Matter of fact, since the Blu-ray Combo Pack comes with a Digital HD copy, I also enjoyed viewing it on my iPhone.

Written by Lawrence Kasdan, J.J. Abrams, and Michael Arndt, the new film takes place 30 years after the events of Return of the Jedi, the final film in George Lucas’ original trilogy that saw the Rebel Alliance finally overthrow the Empire. Han Solo (Harrison Ford) is still flying around hustling his way through the galaxy with his trusty co-pilot and friend Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew), while his love Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher) leads a small resistance group against The First Order, an offshoot of the Empire backed by a Darth Vader-obsessed Sith named Kylo Ren (Adam Driver).

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Universal Congratulates ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ On Breaking ‘Jurassic World’ Record (Image)
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Over the weekend Star Wars: The Force Awakens broke a couple of records, and you might have already heard, including Jurassic World‘s all-time biggest domestic opening weekend record.

Because Disney-owned Marvel was cool enough to congratulate Universal Pictures on breaking the record earlier this year, topping previous record-holder Marvel’s The Avengers, it seemed only fair that Universal return the favor. And that’s exactly what they’ve done. Just as Marvel tweeted out a congratulatory image of Chris Pratt riding a Tyrannosaurus rex holding Thor’s hammer Mjolnir in front of the Avengers team, Frank Marshall has tweeted out an image of the T-rex presenting droid BB-8 with a medal.

You can check out the congratulations image below.

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