Newsletter - FOR THE WEEK

OF October 15th, 2012

  This Week's Highlights
Unn nan - Kubrick, Fritz Lang, Polanski, Ophuls, Marcel Carne, Tobe Hooper, Jules Dassin, Robert Wise, Walter Hill on Blu-ray, and Samuel Fuller on DVD. On the upcoming Calendar we have - coming to Blu-ray - Josef von Sternberg, Sacha Guitry, Kaneto Shindô, Federico Fellini, Aleksandr Sokurov, Bob Fosse and more. We continue with our CONTEST clips with a brand new Olive Films Blu-ray prize!

NOTE: Universal has pulled their Hitchcock Masterpiece Collection and issued a new release date of Oct. 30th in the US and November 5th in the UK. Speculation and early reviews state that the set has some errors - which we, presume, will be 'fixed'.

FEATURE DVD and Blu-ray of the MONTH chosen for SEPTEMBER! HERE

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Cabaret [Blu-ray] (Bob Fosse, 1972) Warner

The Blue Angel [Blu-ray] (Josef von Sternberg, 1930) RB UK Masters of Cinema

La poison [Blu-ray] (Sacha Guitry, 1951) RB UK Masters of Cinema

Onibaba [Blu-ray] (Kaneto Shindô, 1964) RB UK Masters of Cinema

City of Women [Blu-ray] (Federico Fellini, 1980) RB UK Masters of Cinema

The Day He Arrives (Hong Sang-soo, 2011) Cinema Guild

A Star Is Born [Blu-ray] (Frank Pierson, 1976) Warner

White Zombie [Blu-ray] (Victor Halperin, 1932) Kino

Best of Warner Bros 50 Film Collection [Blu-ray] - Warner

Game Change [Blu-ray] (Jay Roach, 2012) HBO Studios

Von Ryan's Express [Blu-ray] (Mark Robson, 1965) 20th Century Fox

The Seven-Per-Cent Solution [Blu-ray] (Herbert Ross, 1976) Shout! Factory

The Nest [Blu-ray] (Terence H. Winkless, 1988) Shout! Factory

The Sex Thief [Blu-ray] (Martin Campbell, 1974) Redemption

Deadly Blessing [Blu-ray] (Wes Craven, 1981) Shout! Factory

SOKUROV: EARLY MASTERWORKS [Blu-ray] (Whispering Pages / Stone / Save and Protect) Cinema Guild

Lightning Bug [Blu-ray] (Robert Hall, 2004) Image Entertainment

Dick Tracy [Blu-ray] (Warren Beatty, 1990) Touchstone

Life Just Is (Alex Barrett, 2012) R2 UK Independent

Ginger & Rosa [Blu-ray] (Sally Potter, 2012) RB UK Artificial Eye

Tabu [Blu-ray] (Miguel Gomes, 2012) RB UK New Wave Cinema

Mrs. Miniver [Blu-ray] (William Wyler, 1942) Warner

The Well Digger's Daughter [Blu-ray] (Daniel Auteuil, 2011) Alive Mind

The Poseidon Adventure [Blu-ray] (Ronald Neame, 1972) 20th Century Fox

Total Recall [Blu-ray] (Len Wiseman, 2012) Sony

The Dark Knight Rises [Blu-ray] (Christopher Nolan, 2012) Warner

Men in Black 3 [Blu-ray] (Barry Sonnenfeld, 2012) Sony Pictures

Prometheus [Blu-ray] (Ridley Scott, 2012) 20th Century Fox

Simpsons: Season 15 [Blu-ray] - 20th Century Fox

Futurama: Volume 7 [Blu-ray] - 20th Century Fox

Magical Mystery Tour [Blu-ray] (George Harrison, Bernard Knowles, 1967) Capitol

The Portrait of a Lady [Blu-ray] (Jane Campion, 1996) Shout! Factory

Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry [Blu-ray] (Alison Klayman, 2012) MPI

The Joy Luck Club [Blu-ray] (Wayne Wang, 1993) Hollywood Pictures

Francis Ford Coppola: 5-Film Collection [Blu-ray] (Apocalypse Now/Apocalypse Now Redux/One From the Heart/Tetro/The Conversation) - LionsGate


ONE VOICE (not Ellsworth Monkton Toohey): Fritz Lang’s two-part Die Nibelungen on Masters of Cinema Blu-ray is the most notable release covered this week - nay, this year. It is an expressionistic and grand epic. Criterion's Blu-ray of Polanski's Rosemary's Baby is a welcome addition to any digital library. Max Ophuls' Letter From An Unknown Woman goes 1080P thanks to Olive Films and the result is the best Home Theater transfer for this masterpiece. Anything Kubrick perks up the ears of cinephiles and his first effort - Fear and Desire - is restored and available on Blu-ray. It's encouraging to see Marcel Carne's atmospheric Le Quai des Brumes (Port of Shadows) reach the new format. Robert Wise' Three Secrets is a very good film with some impressive performances. Sydney Pollack's feature-film The Slender Thread boasts similar attributes with Bancroft and Poitier and is an entertaining, worthy, film. Olive films offers another notable directorial debut to Blu-ray with Alan J. Pakula's The Sterile Cuckoo. Uptight is a unique film by Jules Dassin and includes a cool jazz score of Booker T. Jones. Tobe Hooper's The Funhouse blends horror and black humor within a sinister travelling carnival. Walter Hill's The Driver gets a sloppy HD transfer out of Japan - unworthy of the film's subtleties. On DVD this week The Masters of Cinema group have created an impressive package of Samuel Fuller's Park Row - just excellent. Eric reviewed the family-conflict drama Almost Kings as well as world cinema from the Global Lens Initiative; The Light Thief about a resourceful electrician, Soul of Sand - a mystery-thriller out of India and the Argentinean effort entitled Twisted Romance... Have a pleasant week!


Three Secrets BD - Three Secrets is a darker variation of a theme first explored in A Letter to Three Wives. A plane crashes in the mountains of California; the only survivor is a five-year-old boy, who hovers between life and death. It is discovered that the boys was traveling with his now deceased adoptive parents. Susan Chase (Eleanor Parker), Phyllis Horn (Patricia Neal) and Ann Lawrence (Ruth Roman) wait in agony years earlier, each of the three women had given up a baby son for adoption, with the same birth date as the injured child. Could it be that the little boy on the mountain is actually the son of one of the three women? And if so, how many painful secrets will be revealed in the next few hours? Directed by the great Robert Wise (West Side Story) and beautifully shot by Sidney Hickox (The Big Sleep). Blu-ray Release Date: October 16th, 2012

The Funhouse BD - On her first date with Buzz (Cooper Huckabee, True Blood), Amy (Elizabeth Berridge, Amadeus) disobeys her father and goes to the carnival with Richie (Miles Chapin, Hair) and Liz (Largo Woodruff), but their first date may end up as their last. After witnessing a murder, the four terrified teens are trapped in the maze of the funhouse and stalked by a real monster, a horribly deformed killer who lurks among the freakish exhibits waiting to butcher them one by one. Funhouse also stars Sylvia Miles (Midnight Cowboy) and Kevin Conway (in three roles) and features special makeup designs by Academy Award winner Rick Baker (An American Werewolf In London, Ed Wood). Shout! Factory Blu-ray Release Date: October 16th, 2012

Letter From An Unknown Woman BD - Of all the cinema's fables of doomed love, none is more piercing than this. Fontaine nurses an undeclared childhood crush on her next-door neighbour, a concert pianist (Jourdan); much later, he adds her to his long list of conquests, makes her pregnant - and forgets all about her. Ophüls' endlessly elaborate camera movements, forever circling the characters or co-opting them into larger designs, expose the impasse with hallucinatory clarity: we see how these people see each other and why they are hopelessly, inextricably stuck. Blu-ray Release Date: October 16th, 2012

Fear and Desire BD - Independently financed, and shot by a skeleton crew - with Kubrick controlling almost every aspect of production - FEAR AND DESIRE was conceived as a European-style art film, cloaked in the guise of a Hollywood war picture. Kubrick described the film to distributor Joseph Burstyn as allegorical and poetic. ''A drama of 'man', lost in a hostile world-deprived of material and spiritual foundations-seeking his way to an understanding of himself, and of life around him.'' Blu-ray Release date: October 23rd, 2012

Rosemary's Baby BD - Horrifying and darkly comic, Rosemary’s Baby was Roman Polanski’s Hollywood debut. This wildly entertaining nightmare, faithfully adapted from Ira Levin’s best seller, stars a revelatory Mia Farrow as a young mother-to-be who grows increasingly suspicious that her overfriendly elderly neighbors (played by Sidney Blackmer and an Oscar-winning Ruth Gordon) and self-involved husband (John Cassavetes) are hatching a satanic plot against her and her baby. In the decades of occult cinema that Polanski’s ungodly masterpiece has spawned, it has never been outdone for sheer psychological terror. Blu-ray Release Date: October 30th, 2012

The Slender Thread BD - Sydney Pollack's feature-film debut deals with a woman, played by Anne Bancroft (The Graduate), who takes an overdose of prescription pills and calls a crisis clinic for help. Sidney Poitier (In the Heat of the Night), plays a college volunteer who tries to keep the suicidal woman on the line while asking the police to trace the call. Stirling Silliphant (The Towering Inferno) wrote the screenplay based upon an actual incident reported in Time Magazine. The Slender Thread boasts a strong supporting cast featuring Telly Savalas, Steven Hill, Ed Asner and Dabney Coleman, with a rousing score by Quincy Jones (The Getaway) and great black-and-white cinematography by Loyal Griggs (Shane). Blu-ray Release date: October 16th, 2012

The Sterile Cuckoo BD - Alan J. Pakula's directorial debut stars Liza Minnelli (Cabaret) as Pookie Adams, a relentlessly kooky coed who falls in love with a reserved young college student, Jerry Payne (Wendell Burton). She actively pursues the shy boyish-man and helps him through the tough first months in school. They both benefit from the relationship; he gains self-confidence and she's now able to come to grips with her unhappy home life, but sadly he gradually outgrows her. This very realistic and heartbreaking love story received two Oscar nominations, one for Minnelli (Best Actress) and one for Fred Karlin and Dory Previn for their song, Come Saturday Morning. Blu-ray Release date: October 16th, 2012

Almost Kings - With their father lost in anger and self-loathing, Truck Wheeler has raised his younger brother Ted as best as he could, considering he's just a teenager himself. In return, Ted idolizes his brother. Now, during their one year of high school together, Ted will realize there are troubling aspects to Truck and his party-hardy gang, The Kings. Sometimes, acceptance comes with a price. DVD Release Date: June 12th, 2012

The Light Thief - After Kyrgyz village Kok-Moinok's local electrician Svet-Ake (writer/director Aktan Arym Kubat, MOTHER'S PARADISE), or "Mr. Light", is arrested for tampering with meters for people who cannot afford to pay for electricity, he is not jailed but does lose his job. New opportunities come when deputy hopeful Bezhat (Askat Sulaimanov, SARATAN) arrives with hopes to foster the village's cultural development and he shows interest in Svet-Ake's ambitions to power the entire village with wind power from the nearby gorge; however, respected local mayor Esen (Asan Amanov, THE EMPTY HOUSE) knows that Bezhat covets the land which he plans to sell to the Chinese (and a power source will make it more attractive since most of the current villagers have no electricity in their homes). When Esen suddenly passes away, Bezhat places distant relative Mansur (Stanbek Toichubaev) as the new mayor and proceeds in his redevelopment plans, intimidating those who do not support him. The offer of work for Svet-Ake means both money for his family and an opportunity to realize his ambitions, but it also may mean the further erosion of the village into nothing. DVD Release Date: September 25th, 2012

Soul of Sand - Brutal and utterly nihilistic for an Indian export (well, for those of us who know Indian cinema mainly through Bollywood musicals and a handful of more restrained social realism films), SOUL OF SAND is thin on plot; however, the "forbidden lovers" and pursuing killer elements are really secondary to the film's exploration of caste and predation. DVD Release Date: September 25th, 2012

Twisted Romance - Nineteen year old Roberto (Nehuen Zapata) spends much of his time away from home since as his mother (Olga Perezgel) and sister Alejandra (Marisa Pajaro) jointly support themselves (and him) through both prostitution and palm-reading. One day he is propositioned by fifty-something Raul (Oscar Génova). While Roberto gets no enjoyment out of their rough first encounter, he nevertheless seems to see something more in a continued relationship with Raul than a home away from home. Although Raul is noncommittal and only interested in Roberto when he wants sex, Raul is nevertheless controlling and possessive. DVD Release Date: September 25th, 2012

Park Row - When Phineas Mitchell (Gene Evans), a visionary newspaperman, launches his own title The Globe, his eye-catching headlines and approach quickly catch fire with the New York readership. But less impressed is Charity Hackett (Mary Welch), proprietor of long-established rival The Star, and attempts to undercut The Globe soon escalate into all-out war. Packing more dynamite into eight reels than most directors unleash over a career, Fuller's self-financed Park Row is a passionate, idiosyncratic work of gritty myth-making. DVD Release Date: October 22nd, 2012

Le Quai des Brumes (Port of Shadows) BD - Down a foggy, desolate road to the port city of Le Havre travels Jean (Jean Gabin), an army deserter looking for another chance to make good on life. Fate, however, has a different plan for him, when acts of both revenge and kindness turn him into front-page news. Also starring the blue-eyed phenomenon Michèle Morgan in her first major role, and the menacing Michel Simon, Port of Shadows (Le Quai des brumes) starkly portrays an underworld of lonely souls wrestling with their own destinies. Based on the novel by Pierre Mac Orlan, the inimitable team of director Marcel Carné and writer Jacques Prévert deliver a quintessential example of poetic realism, one of the classics of the golden age of French cinema. Blu-ray Release Date: September 10th, 2012

Uptight BD - Uptight is an updated remake of John Ford's 1935 film, The Informer. Dublin becomes the Cleveland ghetto and the Irish Republicans are replaced by black revolutionary fighters. Days after the assassination of Martin Luther King, Tank Williams (Julian Mayfield) is an unemployed and itinerant steelworker who turns over his militant friend, Johnny (Max Julien) to the police for the $1,000 reward, resulting in an underground all-points bulletin to exact vengeance on the squealer. Legendary director, Jules Dassin's unrelenting directorial pace is complemented by the driving score of Booker T. Jones. The stellar cast includes Raymond St. Jacques, Ruby Dee, Roscoe Lee Browne, and Frank Silvera. Blu-ray Release date: October 16th, 2012

Die Nibelungen BD - Adapted from the myth that served as the basis for Wagner’s Ring cycle (though not an adaptation of the operas themselves), Lang’s picture employs its own counterpoint through a systematic, viral series of deranged geometrical patterns and the arresting, kabuki-like quality of the actors’ performances. The result is a film of startling expressionistic power, and a summit of Fritz Lang’s artistry. Blu-ray Release date: October 29th, 2012

The Driver BD - An audacious, skillful film noir by Walter Hill, so highly stylized that it's guaranteed to alienate 90 percent of its audience. There's no realism, no psychology, and very little plot in Hill's story of a deadly game between a professional getaway driver (Ryan O'Neal) and a detective obsessed with catching him (Bruce Dern). There is, however, a great deal of technically sophisticated and very imaginative filmmaking. The cross-references here are Howard Hawks, Robert Bresson, and Jean-Pierre Melville: a strange, heady, and quite effective range of influences. Blu-ray Release Date: October 2nd, 2012

 Next 4 weeks on the Calendar

October 15th, 2012


Female Vampire [Blu-ray] (Jesus Franco, 1973) Redemption

The Curse of Frankenstein [Blu-ray] (Terence Fisher, 1957) RB UK Lions Gate

The Forgiveness of Blood (Joshua Marston, 2011) - Criterion
The Forgiveness of Blood [
Blu-ray] (Joshua Marston, 2011) - Criterion (BEAVER REVIEW)

The Funhouse [Blu-ray] (Tobe Hooper, 1981) Shout! Factory (BEAVER REVIEW)

King of Devil's Island [Blu-ray] (Marius Hols, 2011) RB UK Entertainment One / Arrow

Letter from an Unknown Woman [Blu-ray] (Max Ophüls, 1948) Olive Films (BEAVER REVIEW)

Mad Men: Season Five [Blu-ray] - Lionsgate

Many Wars Ago (Francesco Rossi, 1970) Raro Video

Nobody Else But You (Poupoupidou) (Gerald Hustache-Mathieu, 2011) First Run Features

Orlok The Vampire in 3D & 2D (F.W. Murnau, 1922) Apprehensive Films

The Slender Thread [Blu-ray] (Sydney Pollack, 1965) Olive Films (BEAVER REVIEW)

The Sterile Cuckoo [Blu-ray] (Alan J. Pakula, 1969) Olive Films (BEAVER REVIEW)

Terror Train [Blu-ray] (Roger Spottiswoode, 1980) Shout! Factory

Three Secrets [Blu-ray] (Robert Wise, 1950) Olive Films (BEAVER REVIEW)

Up Tight! [Blu-ray] (Jules Dassin, 1968) Olive Films (BEAVER REVIEW)

Woody Allen: A Documentary [Blu-ray] RB UK Soda Pictures



October 22nd, 2012


The Alexander Sokurov Collection - 3 Disc Set R2 UK Artificial Eye

Beauty aka Skoonheid (Oliver Hermanus, 2011) TLA Releasing

Blade Runner 30th Anniversary Collector's Edition [Blu-ray] (Ridley Scott, 1982) Warner

The Devil Rides Out [Blu-ray] (Terence Fisher, 1968) RB UK Studio Canal

The Ernie Kovacs Collection, Vol. 2 - Shout! Factory

Fear and Desire [Blu-ray] (Stanley Kubrick, 1953) Kino (BEAVER REVIEW)

Glengarry Glen Ross [Blu-ray] Steelbook (James Foley, 1992) RB UK ITV Studios

Jour de fête [Blu-ray] (Jacques Tati, 1949) RB UK BFI

Killer Joe [Blu-ray] (William Friedkin, 2011) RB UK Entertainment One

The Killing of a Chinese Bookie [Blu-ray] (John Cassavetes, 1976) RB UK BFI

The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (Special Restoration Edition) [Blu-ray] (Powell and Pressburger, 1943) RB UK ITV

Majikoi - Oh Samurai Girl: Complete Collection [Blu-ray] - Section 23

The Man Who Never Was [Blu-ray] (Ronald Neame, 1956) RB UK Odeon Entertainment

Mon Oncle [Blu-ray] (Jacques Tati, 1958) RB UK BFI

The Mummy's Shroud [Blu-ray] (John Gilling, 1967) RB UK Studio Canal

Natural Selection [Blu-ray] (Robbie Pickering, 2011) Cinema Guild

Park Row (Samuel Fuller, 1952) R2 UK Masters of Cinema (BEAVER REVIEW)

The Penalty [Blu-ray] (Wallace Worsley, 1920) Kino

Perry Mason: The Seventh Season 2 - Paramount

Peter Gunn: The Complete Series - Gaiam Entertainment

Rasputin: The Mad Monk [Blu-ray] (Don Sharp, 1966) RB UK Studio Canal

The Slut (Hagar Ben-Asher, 2011) Strand Releasing

Sunday Bloody Sunday (John Schlesinger, 1971) - Criterion
Sunday Bloody Sunday [
Blu-ray] (John Schlesinger, 1971) - Criterion (BEAVER REVIEW)



October 29th, 2012


Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection [Blu-ray] - Saboteur (1942) Shadow of a Doubt (1943) Rope (1948) Rear Window (1954) -The Trouble with Harry (1955) The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956) Vertigo (1958), North by Northwest (1959) Psycho (1960) The Birds (1963) Marnie (1964) Torn Curtain (1966) Topaz (1969) Frenzy (1972) Family Plot (1976) - Universal

Americano [Blu-ray] (Mathieu Demy, 2011) MPI

The Brain (Le Cerveau) [Blu-ray] (Gérard Oury, 1969) Olive Films

Être et avoir [Blu-ray] (Nicolas Philibert, 2002) RB UK Artificial Eye

Greed in the Sun [Blu-ray] (Henri Verneuil, 1964) Olive Films

The Hunter [Blu-ray] (Daniel Nettheim, 2011) RB UK Artificial Eye

Long Day's Journey Into Night [Blu-ray] (Sidney Lumet, 1962) Olive Films

Max Fleischers Superman: Collector's Edition [Blu-ray] - Gaiam

Die Nibelungen (Fritz Lang, 1924) R2 UK Masters of Cinema

Die Nibelungen [Blu-ray] (Fritz Lang, 1924) RB UK Masters of Cinema (BEAVER REVIEW)

The Night Child (Massimo Dallamano, 1975) R2 UK Arrow Films

Polisse (Maïwenn, 2011) R2 UK Artificial Eye

Rosemary’s Baby (Roman Polanski, 1968) Criterion
Rosemary’s Baby [
Blu-ray] (Roman Polanski, 1968) Criterion (BEAVER REVIEW)

Santa Claus Conquers the Martians [Blu-ray] (Nicholas Webster, 1964) Kino

Super Bitch (Massimo Dallamano, 1973) R2 UK Arrow Films

Taxi for Tobruk [Blu-ray] (Denys de La Patellière, 1960) Olive Films

Twilight's Last Gleaming [Blu-ray] (Robert Aldrich, 1977) Olive Films


November 5th, 20120


360 [Blu-ray] (Fernando Meirelles, 2011) Magnolia

Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection [Blu-ray] - Saboteur (1942) Shadow of a Doubt (1943) Rope (1948) Rear Window (1954) -The Trouble with Harry (1955) The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956) Vertigo (1958) Psycho (1960) The Birds (1963) Marnie (1964) Torn Curtain (1966) Topaz (1969) Frenzy (1972) Family Plot (1976) - Universal REGION FREE UK

Alfred Hitchcock Collection [Blu-ray] (Rope - Rear - Window - The Man Who Knew Too Much - Torn Curtain - The Birds - Family Plot - Frenzy - Shadow of a Doubt - The Trouble with Harry - Marnie - Psycho - Saboteur - Topas - Vertigo) - RB DE Universal

The Amazing Spider-Man [Blu-ray] (Marc Webb, 2012) Sony
The Amazing Spider-Man (Four-Disc Combo) [
Blu-ray] (Marc Webb, 2012) Sony

The Bonfire of the Vanities [Blu-ray] (Brian De Palma, 1990) Warner

Le cinéma de Max Linder [Blu-ray] - Editions Montparnasse

The Client [Blu-ray] (Joel Schumacher, 1994) Warner

Cut to the Chase - The Charley Chase Comedy Collection - Milestone

The Day He Arrives (Hong Sang-soo, 2011) Cinema Guild

Death Watch [Blu-ray] (Bertrand Tavernier,1980) RB UK Park Circus (BEAVER REVIEW)

Fritz Lang: The Early Works - Harakiri (aka Madame Butterfly,1919) (The Wandering Shadow, 1920), (Four Around the Woman, 1921) - Kino

The Giants (Bouli Lanners, 2011) R2 UK Artificial Eye

Guys and Dolls [Blu-ray] (Joseph L. Mankiewicz, 1955) Warner

Maîtresse [Blu-ray] (Barbet Schroeder, 1975) RB UK BFI

The Man in the White Suit [Blu-ray] (Alexander Mackendrick, 1951) RB UK Studio Canal

Monsieur Lazhar (Philippe Falardeau, 2011) R2 UK Soda

My Father's Glory / My Mother's Castle [Blu-ray] (Yves Robert, 1990) RB UK Second Sight

Die Nibelungen [Blu-ray] (Fritz Lang, 1924) Kino

Rags and Riches: The Mary Pickford Collection [Blu-ray] (The Poor Little Rich Girl. 1917, The Hoodlum. 1919, Sparrows. 1926) Milestone

Rashômon [Blu-ray] (Akira Kurosawa, 1950) Criterion
Rashômon (Akira Kurosawa, 1950) Criterion

The Rolling Stones Charlie is my Darling - Ireland 1965 [Blu-ray] (Super Deluxe Box Set) - ABKCO Films

Santa Sangre [Blu-ray] (Alejandro Jodorowsky, 1989) RB UK Mr. Bongo

Sick: The Life & Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist (Kirby Dick, 1997) R2 UK BFI

Sunset Blvd. [Blu-ray] (Billy Wilder, 1950) Paramount

They Live [Blu-ray] (John Carpenter, 1988) Shout! Factory

Universal 100th Anniversary Collection [Blu-ray] (25 Films + Book) Universal

Von Ryan's Express [Blu-ray] (Mark Robson, 1965) 20th Century Fox

Zorro [Blu-ray] (Duccio Tessari, 1975) Somerville


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