DVDBeaver Newsletter - July 30th, 2007
Sawubona! - Although only 10 new reviews this week bear in mind one is a colossal 10 Film Boxset that touches upon work from Nicholas Ray, Anthony Mann, Fred Zinnemann and John Sturges, a new article and new contest and past contest winners plus 43 new calendar updates too... Noir, Noir, Noir...
SAD NEWS: Swedish director Ingmar Bergman, an iconoclastic filmmaker widely regarded as one of the great masters of modern cinema, died Monday, the president of his foundation said. He was 89.
NEW ARTICLE: "Beauty Lurking in the Shadows - Favorite Women of Film Noir"
NEW CONTEST - Identify the nine short clips, on our homepage, from noir films and win a sealed copy of Film Noir Classic Collection, Vol. 4!
CLUE: Clip # 1 and # 5 seem to be most problematic. The film used for Clip #1 has Anna May Wong in a small role - Clip # 5's film is mentioned in this very newsletter. Four of the nine answers are listed in the new article (linked above).
OLD CONTEST ANSWERS:
Nights of Cabiria (dir.
Clip 2: The Terrorist (dir. Santosh Sivan)
Clip 3: The Pledge (dir. Sean Penn)
Clip 4: My Sons (dir. Yoji Yamada)
Clip 5: L'Avventura (dir. Michelangelo Antonioni)
1st prize: Criterion's Teshingahara set goes to Joshua Burrack
2nd prize: Marker pairing (La
Sans Soleil) goes to Mak Zed
3rd prize: HD-DVD of Rio Bravo goes to Jon Barli
Congrats and thanks to all for participating.
FEATURE DVD OF THE MONTH (AUGUST) is announced. Reviewed HERE Purchase HERE
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Easiest way to catch up is simply read the new Newsletter Archive HERE.
LATEST Additions to the Release Calendar (PRE-ORDER!)
NOTEWORTHY... or how to make a cineophile broke (more broke?):
WOW: For many the big news this week is the listing of Blade Runner (Five-Disc Ultimate Collector's Edition) and Blade Runner - The Final Cut (Two-Disc Special Edition). For others it may be The Seventh Seal [Blu-ray], and still others The Wild Bunch [Blu-ray] or The Wild Bunch [HD DVD]. For me it might be Cry of the City which I'm positive will eclipse the exiting French and Spanish DVDs. Other stuff I'll be reviewing for sure; Visconti's Bellissima and Silence (AKA Chinmoku) by MoC, Bunuels' Woman Without Love, the new This Sporting Life, The Way To The Stars and Peckinpah's The Deadly Companions. I'll be picking up Bigger Than Life and hope the image quality will equal or better the French edition and also have some beneficial supplements. I am intrigued by Carol Landis and will get Brass Monkey. I was always keen on A Few Good Men [Blu-ray] and my existing SD DVD is weak. Guilty distraction Family Guy Season 6 and Spider-Man Trilogy [Blu-ray] (if it is North American friendly). Outside releases that sound interesting - White Light/Black Rain: The Destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Jasmine Women and Masada - The Complete Epic Mini-Series.
The Seventh Seal [Blu-ray] (Ingmar Bergman, 1957) - UK Tartan Video
Cry of the City (Robert Siodmak, 1948) R2 Uk Bfi Video
The Deadly Companions (Sam Peckinpah, 1961) R2 UK Optimum Home Entertainment
Silence (AKA Chinmoku) (Masahiro Shinoda, 1971) R2 UK Eureka Masters of Cinema
This Sporting Life (Lindsay Anderson, 1963) R2 UK Network
Spider-Man Trilogy [Blu-ray] R2 UK Sony Pictures Home Ent. UK
Spider-Man 3 [Blu-ray] (Sam Raimi, 2007) R2 UK Sony Pictures Home Ent. UK
The Night of the Sunflowers (Jorge Sánchez-Cabezudo, 2006) R2 UK YUME PICTURES
Bellissima (Luchino Visconti, 1951) R2 UK Eureka Masters of Cinema
The Way To The Stars (Anthony Asquith, 1945) R2 UK Network
Family Guy Season 6 - R2 UK 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
Spider-Man 3 (Sam Raimi, 2007) R2 UK Sony Pictures Home Ent. UK
Beyond the Gates (Rated) (Michael Caton-Jones, 2005) 20th Century Fox
Beyond the Gates (Unrated) (Michael Caton-Jones, 2005) 20th Century Fox
Troy (2-disc Director's Cut) [HD DVD] (Wolfgang Petersen, 2004) Warner
Jasmine Women (Yong Hou, 2006) Kam
White Light/Black Rain: The Destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki (Steven Okazaki, 2007) HBO
Flash Gordon (Saviour Of The Universe Edition) (Mike Hodges, 1980) Universal Studios
Blade Runner - The Final Cut (Two-Disc Special Edition) (Ridley Scott, 1982) Warner
Blade Runner (Five-Disc Ultimate Collector's Edition) (Ridley Scott, 1982) Warner
Who Was Kafka? (Richard Dindo, 2006) ARTE
Woman Without Love (Luis Buñuel, 1952) CINEMATECA
Brass Monkey (Thornton Freeland, 1948) Televista
The Trials of Darryl Hunt (Ricki Stern, 2006) Velocity / Thinkfilm
The Wild Bunch [Blu-ray] (Sam Peckinpah, 1969) Warner Home Video
The Wild Bunch [HD DVD] (Sam Peckinpah, 1969) Warner Home Video
Next [HD DVD] (Lee Tamahori, 2007) Paramount Home Video
Next [Blu-ray] (Lee Tamahori, 2007) Paramount Home Video
Tekkon Kinkreet [Blu-ray] (Michael Arias, 2006) Sony
Alligator (Lewis Teague,1980) Lionsgate
House of 1,000 Corpses [Blu-ray] (Rob Zombie, 2003) Lionsgate
The Return of the Living Dead (Collector's Edition) (Dan O'Bannon, 1985) MGM
The Replacement Killers [Blu-ray] (Antoine Fuqua, 1998) Sony
The Food of the Gods (Bert I. Gordon, 1976) MGM
A Christmas Carol (Ultimate Collector's Edition) (Brian Desmond Hurst, 1951) VCI Entertainment
The Lost World (Special Edition) (Irwin Allen, 1960) Fox
Carolina Moon (Stephen Tolkin, 2007) Sony Pictures
Tales From the Crypt/Vault Of Horror (Roy Ward Baker, 1972) Fox Home Entertainment
Masada - The Complete Epic Mini-Series (Boris Sagal, 1981) Koch Vision
A Few Good Men [Blu-ray] (Rob Reiner, 1992) Sony
Xperimental Eros (2007) - OTHER CINEMA
Bigger Than Life (Nicholas Ray, 1956) R2 UK Bfi Video
Wings of Honneamise (2-disc) (Hiroyuki Yamaga, 1987) [HD DVD/SD Combo] GENEON
Plus we have word on these this year:
2007, the collection, called "Ford at Fox," will consists
of 25 features that Ford made for Fox, including five silents,
18 of which will be new to DVD. Priced at $299.98 it will also
contain a new documentary on Ford by Nick Redman. (Source
• Warner Home Video Director's Series: Stanley Kubrick Collection on 23rd October 2007. 2001: A Space Odyssey (2-Disc Special Edition), A Clockwork Orange (2-Disc Special Edition), Eyes Wide Shut (2-Disc Special Edition), The Shining (2-Disc Special Edition WIDESCREEN), Barry Lyndon and Lolita
A Deluxe Edition of Full Metal Jacket will also be released in Blu-ray Disc and HD DVD
• Burt Lancaster The Signature Collection on 23rd October 2007. The Flame and Arrow, His Majesty O’Keefe, South Sea Woman and Jim Thorpe - All American.
• Barbara Stanwyck The Signature Collection (5 discs) -- Annie Oakley, East Side, West Side, Executive Suite, My Reputation and a Double Feature disc, To Please A Lady and Jeopardy.
RECOMMENDATIONS: Just me:
I SAY: I had a pretty full plate this week and my only recommendations are Film Noir Classic Collection, Vol. 4 which I rate as DVD package of the Century and Streets of Fire which always hit my cinema funny bone just right. I do agree with Leonard about Black Snake Moan and Eddie with thumbs up for The Bourne Identity. Roving Mars sounds tempting as does Ghost in the Shell: Innocence for anime fans.
Ghost in the Shell: Innocence
BR - Following upon his first Ghost in
the Shell animé feature film, as if two entire TV series did not exist
between them, Mamoru Oshii picks up after Major Kusanagi retires herself (sort
of like Dr. Who, I always thought). Batou, her bionic partner in the special
police unit known as Section 9 that investigates cybercrime, together with
Togusa, one of the younger, mostly human, cops (with a family, no less), is now
looking into the murders of owners of robot-dolls by the dolls themselves who,
in turn, self-destruct.
Ice Age: The Meltdown BR - Like Shrek before it, but unlike the original Ice Age movie from Blue Sky, the first several minutes is designed to make certain that six-year olds remain glued to the screen. I'm not sure what is supposed to become of them after a friendly turtle-like creature (a glyptodont) is eaten by a giant aquatic reptile, but there it is. During the first Ice Age, animals of all stripes were fleeing the area for warmer climes. Along the way, Manny the Mammoth is joined by Sid the Sloth. They rescue a human baby from a raging river and reluctantly decide to reconnect it with its family.
Roving Mars BR - First produced for IMAX presentation in 2006, this Blu-ray presentation is being simultaneously released in SD-DVD. The award-winning documentary about the Mars Rover project was directed by George Butler, who goes all the way back to Pumping Iron, the 1977 film that gave us those two incredible hulks, Lou Ferrigno and Arnold Schwarzenegger. More recently, he directed The Endurance, about Ernest Shackelton and his exploration of Antarctica, which won all kinds of documentary awards. DVD Release Date: July 31st, 2007
Black Snake Moan BR - Writer/director, Craig Brewer, followed his 2004 debut, Hustle & Flow, with this story of redemption and resurrection. The three principal characters are seriously damaged: Lazarus, by way of a marital betrayal of biblical proportions; Rae, the town nymphomaniac, is the victim of familial sexual abuse. DVD Release Date: June 26, 2007
The Bourne Identity (HD) - Jason Bourne (Damon) is an amnesiac who´s running from his CIA handlers after he botches an assassination. In order to avoid being detected on airplanes or trains, Bourne solicits Marie´s help with an offer to pay her $10,000 if she drives him from Zurich, Switzerland to Paris, France. Bourne´s old boss (Chris Cooper) dispatches several other assassins to eliminate Bourne, which leads to a car chase in the narrow streets of Paris, a brutal showdown between Damon and Clive Owen (he of those BMW mini-movies) in the French countryside, and a “fuck-off” confrontation between Bourne and CIA spymasters. DVD Release Date: July 24th, 2007
Hot Fuzz - The wits behind the controlled chaos that is Hot Fuzz, a parody of Hollywood-style action flicks, wield a somewhat heavier comic cudgel than they did in their last big-screen outing, the zombie caper Shaun of the Dead. This time, as they say in the blow-up business, it’s personal, or at least somewhat personalized, since the more obvious targets here include high-octane producer-auteurs like Jerry Bruckheimer and Joel Silver, who, with their fat budgets and armies of heavily armed bad boys, have helped define the modern action spectacular, reshaping the old kiss-kiss, bang-bang movie experience into the cinema of lock-and-load. DVD Release Date: July 31st, 2007
Streets of Fire (HD) - Gotta love Walter Hill [The Warriors (1979), The Driver (1978), Hard Times (1975) etc.]. Pure cheese with many obvious imitations... but he pulls it of so very well. If he started working a bit later he would be the definitive MTV video producer with his fast cuts and superficial intent. Streets of Fire is a western style 'rock and roll fable' complete with good and bad, a healthy dose of machismo calm and pure action in its most corruptibly passable edited form. Supposedly a 'futuristic' tale - it looks a lot like the 50's and the cast is a stable of brooding stars of varying future fame - including Michael Paré, Diane Lane, Rick Moranis, Amy Madigan, Bill Paxton, Marine Jahan (the actual dancer in Flashdance) and a young Willem Dafoe looking as pale and scary as ever. DVD Release Date: July 24th, 2007
Film Noir Classic Collection, Vol. 4 - 10 strong noir entries - Decoy (1946), Act of Violence (1948), They Live by Night (1948), The Big Steal (1949), Mystery Street (1950), Side Street (1950), Tension (1950), Where Danger Lives (1950), Crime Wave (1954) and Illegal (1955) - notable directors Nicholas Ray, Anthony Mann, Fred Zinnemann, John Sturges - notable stars Robert Ryan, Janet Leigh, Edward G. Robinson, Robert Mitchum - it all adds up to the best deal in DVD-dom. DVD Release Date: July 31st, 2007
Last Hurrah For Chivalry - What’s remarkable is that the central themes in Woo’s tales have not changed throughout the years. In Last Hurrah, swords replace guns while much of the slow motion techniques common to the likes of Hard Boiled had yet to be implemented. But the idea of male bonding and sacrifice is ever present. Likewise, there is a fair amount of bloodletting, although tame compared to Chang Cheh’s work at Shaw Brothers. Veteran action director and actor Fung Hark-on does terrific work with the numerous fight scenes. DVD Release Date: July 24th, 2007
Nomad (The Warrior) - Apparently a whopping correction is in order. John Ford was widely reported to have died in 1973, but it turns out he is alive and well and still making movies--in Kazakhstan. That, at least, is what Nomad: The Warrior, a big-budget epic newly arrived from that country, suggests. Two other directors, Sergei Bodrov and Ivan Passer, are credited, and there’s not a cowboy in sight, but the film looks and feels like an old-school American western. Not a great western, but a reasonably good example of that genre. Hats off in particular to the horse wranglers. DVD Release Date: July 24th, 2007
Next 2 weeks on the Calendar:
July 30th, 2007
20 Million Miles To Earth (2-disc 50th Anniversary Edition) (Nathan Juran, 1957) Sony Pictures
300 (Widescreen Two-Disc Special Edition) (Zack Snyder, 2007) Warner
300 (Combo HD DVD and Standard DVD) [HD DVD] (Zack Snyder, 2007) Warner
300 [Blu-ray] (Zack Snyder, 2007) Warner
Bigger Than Life (Nicholas Ray, 1956) R2 UK Bfi Video
Blue Planet (IMAX) (Ben Burtt, 1990) [HD DVD] Imax
Blue Planet (IMAX) (Ben Burtt, 1990) [Blu-ray] Imax
Distant Voices, Still Lives (Terence Davies, 1988) R2 UK BFI
The Fallen (Ari Taub, 2004) R2 UK Scanbox Entertainment
The Film Noir Classics Collection: Vol 4 - Act of Violence (MGM, 1949), The Big Steal (1949), Crime Wave (WB, 1954), Decoy (Monogram, 1946), Illegal (WB, 1955), Mystery Street (MGM, 1950), Side Street (MGM, 1950), Tension (MGM, 1950), They Live By Night (RKO, 1949), Where Danger Lives (RKO, 1950) - Warner Home Video
Popeye the Sailor: 1933-1938, Vol. 1 - Warner Home Video
Week of August 6th, 2007
Brigitte Bardot 5-Film Collection(Naughty Girl (1956), Come Dance with Me (1959), Love on a Pillow (1962), Two Weeks in September (1967), The Vixen (1969) - Lions Gate Home Entertainment
The Final Test(Anthony Asquith, 1953) R2 UK Odeon Entertainment
Flash Gordon (Saviour Of The Universe Edition) (Mike Hodges, 1980) Universal Studios
Jasmine Women(Yong Hou, 2006) Kam
Luis Bunuel Boxset(Gran Casino and The Young One) Lions Gate Home Entertainment
Major Barbara(Gabriel Pascal, 1941) R2 UK Second Sight Films Ltd.
Myrna Loy & William Powell Collection(Manhattan Melodrama / Evelyn Prentice / Double Wedding / Love Crazy / I Love You Again) - Warner Home Video
Private Fears in Public Places(Alain Resnais, 2006) IFC
Quo VadisMini-series (Franco Rossin, 1985) - 2-disc - R2 UK Liberation Entertainment
Roads to Koktebel(Boris Khlebnikov, Aleksei Popogrebsky - 2003) Film Movement
The Simpsons - The Complete Tenth Season- 20th Century Fox
Song of the Thin Man(Edward Buzzell, 1947) Warner Home Video
Summertime(David Lean, 1955) R2 UK Second Sight Films Ltd.
White Light/Black Rain: The Destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki(Steven Okazaki, 2007) HBO
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