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Excellent last-minute gift ideas, only at Scarecrow!

In a jam for that last minute Christmas present? Is there a video nerd in your life who buys everything the day it comes out? We here at Scarecrow feel your pain and would love to help you out with some unique gift ideas that you'd be hard pressed to find anywhere else on such short notice. The most notable item in the store right now, by far, would have to be Stingray Sam, which is Cory McAbee's dazzling follow up to American Astronaut. McAbee swept through town a month or so ago and showed the film to packed houses at the Northwest Film Forum, and up until a couple weeks ago you could only get the DVD from the official website. Recently, we contacted the very friendly producers and arranged to be able to sell it in our store. In fact we are told that, apart from McAbee's official website, we're the only store in the country currently offering copies of the DVD, so, I guess you could call it a 'Scarecrow Exclusive.' Hah, take that WeinsteinTargetBestBuyAmazon. We've also got copies of the long unavailable aforementioned American Astronaut if you missed out on that one and don't want to pay collector's prices, which start out for $70 at major online etailers. [caption id="attachment_2229" align="aligncenter" width="216" caption="part western, part sci-fi, part musical, all awesome"]stingraysam[/caption] Other notable items I dare you to find on another shelf in Seattle: Lots of choice import Blu-rays Know someone who's getting a Blu-ray machine for Christmas? Want to get them something instead of Terminator: Salvation or Transformers 2? Many Blu-ray discs are region-coded, but not all, and there are a few lovely region-free Blu-rays only available from the UK, Canada, and now Scarecrow. For the silent fan, or really just any lover of great cinema, there is Sunrise. Until now, even a standard DVD of Murnau's masterpiece was hard as hell to find. UK label Masters Of Cinema has rectified the situation with this release and we're stocking it because, well, it's one of the greatest films ever made and it's never looked better. The disc gives us two different versions of the film, including an alternate cut recently discovered in the Czech Republic. Bonus features include two scores to choose from, commentary by legendary cinematographer John Bailey, outtakes, and much more. You like music? Don't have a wad of cash to plop down on the giant suede-encrusted Woodstock Blu-ray box? We've got you more than covered with the UK import, nearly $30 cheaper AND loaded with even MORE bonus features than the bigass box. We also have a few Blu-rays of the Canadian release of Hard Day's Night here. No US announcement as of yet. Beatles in hi-def sounds very nice. We've also brought in the much cheaper non-box-set versions of Wizard Of Oz and Gone With The Wind. Warner has a nasty trend, apparently only in the U.S., of releasing huge Blu-ray box sets one year (as they did in '08 with Casablanca) and then releasing a more affordable Blu-ray a year later. We've skipped ahead a year so you don't have to. If Hong Kong action's your thing, we've got Ip Man, the thrilling, wildly popular biopic about Bruce Lee's mentor, starring Donnie Yen, and choreographed by Sammo Hung. Even though this has grossed millions worldwide, it has yet to find a release date in the U.S. As much as we love the cinema and encourage you to attend it, treat yourself to a grand showing of this at home on the biggest screen possible in the meantime. Oh yeah, we've got another Hong Kong action flick of note here on Blu-ray, for sale, and a hell of a lot longer than the truncated version one currently being offered to U.S. audiences. It's a John Woo historical epic, Red something or another. I forget. Running time is a whopping 286 minutes and worth every second. A couple other notable UK, region-free Blu-ray imports are Powell and Pressburger's Black Narcissus, one of the loveliest color films ever made and a stunner in hi-def, and Withnail And I, which boasts a shiny new 1080p transfer. We should mention though that the special features on this disc are in PAL, which won't play unless you have a region-free Blu-ray player. Last but not least, in Blu-ray importland, we've got the original Michael Caine Italian Job, with loads of bonus features, all region-free, and From Dusk Til Dawn, if you'd like to complement your Tarantino/Rodriguez Blu-ray shelf. Not gone BLU yet? No sweat. We've got you uniquely covered in standard-def too. One of our biggest sellers this year has been Urgh: A Music War. Part of the reason is that it's been hard as hell to find at all for about 20 years, and now that Warner Archives has made it available as a burn-on-demand dvd-r orderable through their website they have made it only slightly less hard to find. We're all about easy here, and have ordered a few for you to grab at your leisure. Unfamiliar to the greatness that is URGH? See Rhias' awesome post here. [caption id="attachment_2230" align="aligncenter" width="200" caption="see xtc live!"]urgh![/caption] Apart From That is a gripping independent drama that might appeal to fans of John Cassavettes. It was locally produced and we were fortunate enough to have the filmmakers provide us copies for sale. If you missed it at it's successful run at the Grand Illusion, or it's award winning screening at SIFF, now's the time to catch up! If you want to give the gift of documentary, we're in no short supply of those either. Again, through special arrangement with the filmmaker, we have been able to stock the films of Frederick Wiseman, perhaps the most respected and acclaimed documentarian working today. As with Urgh, these films have not seen the light of day in the home video market until recently. Wiseman's films were easily our most requested items since we opened our doors and after many years are happy to be carrying them. Among the great ones we've stocked for sale are his seminal Titicut Follies, as well as Meat, Primate, and Ballet, which has a cousin in Wiseman's latest masterpiece currently in theatres, La Danse. We've also got a nice selection of great documentaries from the Buddhist Film Society, such as Compassion In Exile, Peace Is Every Step, Tibet: A Buddhist Trilogy, Words Of My Perfect Teacher, and The Lion's Roar. Give the Buddhist on your list a video treat. They will be happy. There are many other unique items here, too many to list and expect you to keep reading, so drop by, take a look, and get a bonus for yourself in the meantime. Did you know that every purchase you make earns you credit for a free rental? We hope you can find a special something for that special someone here. And if not, there's always a Scarecrow Gift Certificate, available in any dollar amount. Happy Holidays!

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