William Shatner’s new DVD club casts him in the one role he’s not had during his storied 50-year acting career: film critic. The recently launched The Official William Shatner DVD Club, a DVD-of-the-month club, showcases the best sci-fi movies that didn’t come to a theater near you. Shatner explains, “Determining what movies get broad distribution and studio marketing support is a complicated process, and unfortunately the caliber of the film isn’t the only consideration. I’ve chosen a select group of memorable and entertaining sci-fi movies that never got the exposure they deserved, and made them available to fans everywhere at a great price.”
While many of the films distributed by the William Shatner DVD Club have names that the casual fan may not recognize, those few fans who have seen these movies agree that they are underground hits. For example, in IMDB (the popular movie feedback website owned by Amazon.com), the following three recent movies received the same rating: Vanilla Sky, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, and Ginger Snaps. Terminator 3 grossed $418mm at the box office. Vanilla Sky topped over $200mm during an impressive theater run. And Ginger Snapsr Ginger Snaps (a North American production) grossed a whopping 146,125 Spanish Pesatas in a brief European engagement before becoming an afterthought in a crowded sci-fi market. And most American movie fans missed out on one of the best sci-fi films of the last five years.
Ginger Snaps was the first movie William Shatner included in the club, but it is not the only great movie with an unfamiliar name available to members. Close Your Eyes, a sci-fi thriller, won three awards at the Paris Film Festival in 2004, and took home top honors from the Swedish Fantastic Film Festival in 2002. Richard Roeper (of Ebert & Roeper) raves about Close Your Eyes, “”One of the best thrillers I’ve seen probably since The Ring.” Immortal (Ad Vitam), a film which was never released in U.S. movie theaters, has been called “jaw dropping, highly detailed, and smoothly executed” (Movie-vault.com) and “strangely and almost hypnotically engaging” (Moviepie.com). More information about the movies included in the club is available on the official website (ShatnerDvdClub.com).
One of the benefits of featuring less well known content is that the movies are available at very reasonable prices. In fact, subscribers to the William Shatner DVD Club will own a new film every month for about the cost of a rental. At the very reasonable price of less than $4 per DVD (including shipping) William Shatner hopes to make his club available to all sci-fi fans. Right now, the William Shatner DVD Club is offering anyone with an e-mail address a free Ginger Snaps DVD. To take advantage of this offer, go to ShatnerDvdClub.com.
Adam Schwartz, one of the very first people to join the club, had this to say, “I had never heard of Ginger Snaps but it was a great movie. And they gave me a bonus disc with it, so I actually got two movies for free. I’ve always liked William Shatner as an actor, but I think I like him even more as a film critic.”