The gift-giving season is upon us. Friends and family who love movies and TV are a fine category to shop for. After all, who doesn’t love movies and TV? Learn your loved ones’ favorite films and purchase accordingly in DVD, Blu-ray, book, T-shirt, soundtrack, game or action figure form. Here then are a few suggestions from our own, personal 2016 “wish list.”
Mondo, the collectable art boutique set up inside Austin’s famous Alamo Drafthouse, has made a reputation by teaming with big-name contemporary artists to create limited-edition posters and T-shirts based on cult movies. Now the company has branched out into movie and TV soundtracks, delivering some of this year’s hottest spins on vinyl. You can score gorgeously assembled, limited-edition soundtracks from infamous Italian horror films (Cannibal Holocaust), animated faves (The Iron Giant), cult TV shows (“Over the Garden Wall”) and more (Hollywood Chainsaw Hookers? No way!) But the current cream of the crop are these sets from Netflix’s Marvel TV shows: “Daredevil” by John Paesano, “Jessica Jones” by Sean Callery and “Luke Cage” by Adrian Younge & Ali Shaheed Muhammad. Anyone who’s watched “Luke Cage” knows the soundtrack is a mindblower, a bad-ass mix-up of old school hip-hop beats and Ennio Morricone-style Spaghetti Western twang. Co-composer Ali Shaheed Muhammad is a member of A Tribe Called Quest and helped make this genre-blending orchestral score a must-have. Plus, the double-disc set comes on stamped on canary yellow vinyl!
($199, Universal Studios Home Entertainment)
This 15-disc box set features 15 Hitchcock classics (Rear Window, The Trouble With Harry, Vertigo, North By Northwest, Psycho, Saboteur, Shadow of a Doubt, Rope, The Man Who Knew Too Much, Torn Curtain, Topaz, Frenzy, The Birds, Marnie and Family Plot), several of which are released here in gorgeous new transfers. The quality of the transfer reportedly drops on some of the discs (Family Plot, for example, features some unfortunate digital arifacting), but there is a 58-page booklet in the sturdy slipcase featuring photos of memorabilia and trivia from each of the films. An impressive “best of” collection for the historic Hollywood lover on your list.
Fans of Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon’s irreverent sci-fi cartoon “Rick and Morty” will instantly recognize this ridiculously awesome tribute to the season one episode “Anatomy Park” in which mad scientist Rick builds a microscopic theme park inside the body of a homeless man named Reuben (who is wearing a Santa outfit, naturally). This festive sweater features Rick, Morty and Reuben on the front as well as the immortal line “Giant Naked Sky Santa Has Exploded” on the back. Rest in peace, Reuben. Or in pieces, as the case may be.
Bryan Cranston is a much-loved actor—particularly in this zip code, thanks to his indelible portrayal of Walter White in “Breaking Bad.” But the guy has had a long and storied life, and he tells it all in this funny, inspiring memoir. The book is both a coming-of-age tale, recounting Cranston’s life in acting since age 7. (Cranston’s father walked out on the family when his son was only 11, leaving young Bryan to be raised by his grandparents.) It’s also a love letter to the art and craft of acting. Fans will love it, actors will memorize it.
Nope, these 12-inch action figures from Blitzway are not cheap. They’re over $200 apiece or $896 if you want to get all four of the original Ghostbusters (including a special Slimer figure and a light up “no ghosts” sign). But look at the detail on these things. Mother puss bucket, are they realistic. Each one comes with a tailored cloth jumpsuit, multiple hand configurations and dozens of props and accessories. The painstakingly recreated proton packs are worth the price of admission alone. These are so incredible you might just want to gift them to yourself for Christmas. Blitzway figures are limited editions and always sell out. The release date on these is scheduled for Dec.-Feb. You can pre-order them from a handful of online retailers like bluefincorp.com.
($50, River Horse)
The brand new board game based on Jim Henson’s beloved 1984 film starts with five beautifully-crafted figures sculpted in the likeness of the major characters (including Jareth, Sarah and Hoggle). The game, designed for one to five people ages 13 and up, tasks players with navigating the titular magical maze. Cards pulled from the deck featuring magical encounters and monsters change the game every time it’s played. Word of warning: The game is imported in limited quantities from Europe, and can be hard to find at the list price.