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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r


André Téchiné Collection

Hôtel des Amériques (1981)      J'embrasse pas - I Don't Kiss (1991)

Ma saison préférée - My Favorite Season (1993)        Les Roseaux sauvages - Wild Reeds (1994)


Wild Reeds if reviewed on Blu-ray HERE






I think that one never grows up emotionally. We grow up physically, intellectually, socially, and even morally but never emotionally. Recognition of this fact can be either terrifying or deeply moving. Everyone handles it in their own way. --Andre Techine

Hôtel des Amériques (1981) - The beautiful Helene (Catherine Deneuve) works in a hospital as an anesthesiologist and so when she accidentally hits Gilles (Patrick Dewaere) while driving her car, she can jump out and know exactly what to do to make sure he is not seriously hurt. The two start off a relationship based on this "chance" meeting, though the inauspicious beginning should have served as a warning. Gilles does not do very much except live in a room in his family's hotel and hang out. His lethargic approach to life is an anesthetic in itself, and since Helene is still mourning the death of her former lover a few years before, she is not overly anxious to start a new romance. The two of them go back and forth in a cat-and-mouse game until Helene tires of going nowhere and decides to leave for Paris. Considering how difficult it is for Gilles to rise to any action, it seems that Helene may remain alone unless she runs into someone else.

~ Eleanor Mannikka, All Movie Guide


J'embrasse pas - I Don't Kiss (1991) - The innocent country boy has come a long way since arriving with high hopes of making it in the big city. His only contact (with equally vulnerable middle-aged widow Vincent) provides a bed to sleep in, but under impossible conditions. Film producer Noiret offers 'no sex' overtures of friendship, which he only later realises are more predatory than they seemed. Auditions end in humiliation and flight from his tentative ambition to become an actor. Only tart-with-a-troubled-heart Béart seems honest in this world without pity.

Excerpt from TimeOut Film Guide located HERE


Ma saison préférée - My Favorite Season (1993) - Despite having taken three years to make the trip across the Atlantic, Andre Techine's Ma Saison Preferee is surely one of the best films of the summer, if not the year. After its release in France, Ma Saison Preferee was unable to acquire an American distributor; however, following the modest art-house success of the director's subsequent effort, Wild Reeds, the door was opened for the movie's U.S. showing. For those who enjoy rich, complex character dramas, the arrival of Ma Saison Preferee is a cause for celebration.

Ma Saison Preferee is about relationships and communication. It's about sacrifice and misunderstandings. And, above all, it's about the ties of family and how the passage of time constantly distorts and re-invents our relationships with those we are closest to. Techine's masterful story probes these issues, constantly digging deeper to uncover hidden motivations. In the process, a pair of multi-dimensional, completely believable personalities are created. These characters get under our skin and stay there.

Excerpt from James Berardinell'is Reelreview located HERE 


Les Roseaux sauvages - Wild Reeds (1994) - Winner of four 1994 Cesar awards (best picture, best director, best screenplay, and best female newcomer), Wild Reeds beat out such big-name, high-budget productions as Queen Margot. Originally commissioned by French television, but first released theatrically, this story of four youths struggling with the pressures of becoming adults in 1962 France presents an honest look at all the angst and uncertainty of finding oneself.

If Wild Reeds was just another coming-of-age story, it wouldn't be worth more than a cursory glance. However, Andre Techine's semi-autobiographical look back at his final year in boarding school possesses more depth and realism than many similar films. Nostalgia does not tint this narrative with its warm sepia tones. Essentially a character study of the four corners of a romantic quadrangle, Wild Reeds examines adolescence from the point-of-view of those who feel themselves to be "outsiders", and shows that while the political and social climate may affect a person's development, other factors -- such as friendship and love -- are often more dominant.

Excerpt from James Berardinell'is Reelreview located HERE 


Theatrical Releases: Various from 1981 - 1994

  DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Lionsgate (3-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC

DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

Distribution Lionsgate - Region 1 - NTSC
Time: 1:55:52, 1:33:52, 2:06:56, 1:53:52 - :over 6+ hrs. total on 3 discs

Disc 1


Disc 2


Disc 3

Audio French (original)
Subtitles English (CC), Spanish, None

Release Information:
Studio: Lionsgate

Aspect Ratio:
All Original Aspect Ratios - 1.66 (Wild Reeds),  1.85, 2.35

Edition Details:

• none

DVD Release Date: July 22nd, 2008

Custom case (see image above)
20 each X 4 = 80



Wild Reeds if reviewed on Blu-ray HERE

The three discs are divided as follows:


Disc 1 (DVD9 - Dual-layered/single-sided):
- Hôtel des Amériques (1981)

- J'embrasse pas - I Don't Kiss (1991)

Disc 2 (DVD5 - Single-layered/single-sided):
- Ma saison préférée - My Favorite Season (1993)

Disc 3 (DVD5 - Single-layered/single-sided):
- Les Roseaux sauvages - Wild Reeds (1994)

The 4 main features/3 discs of this boxset are housed in a keep case and none of the films are sold separately by Lions Gate at this time.  All four features are coded for region 1 in the NTSC standard and all features are anamorphic in their original aspect ratio, progressively transferred. Lions Gate have some sort of agreement with Studio Canal in place and, in fact, all start with that logo.

Each have original French audio and options for English (CC) or Spanish subtitles in an white font with black border (see samples below). There are no extras and I endorse this pragmatic concept of packaging - more films, less cost.

Overall impression: I guess the first question to ask is - Why three discs? as discs 2 + 3 are singled layered couldn't

Ma saison préférée - My Favorite Season (1993) and Les Roseaux sauvages - Wild Reeds (1994) have been put on the same DVD? Seems kind of silly and wasteful. Secondly, Hôtel des Amériques (1981) seems to be the exact same transfer as found on LionsGate's recent Catherine Deneuve Collection so I didn't take new captures of that film. Fox Lorber came out with a pretty abysmal edition of  Ma saison préférée - My Favorite Season (1993) back in 1998 HERE and at the same time Les Roseaux sauvages - Wild Reeds (1994) HERE - so it's great to see those titles updated. I've never seen J'embrasse pas - I Don't Kiss (1991) and don't believe it has been on DVD before.

Image: Frankly the image quality is not great. The best I can say is that the two that were previously available from Fox/Lorber are vastly improved, all are anamorphic and progressive. I wouldn't be overly concerned with the single-layering but artifacts are visible and each image seems a bit thin. Colors and contrast seem similarly weak. I think the screen captures below can indicate quality which, as another quasi-positive, seems fairly consistent. If I was to choose a word it would be 'mediocre'.   

Audio - All original French in monaural or 2.0 channel. Subtitles seem competent but may be occasionally précised. English and Spanish are available for all 4 films.

There are no supplements and this is reflected in the reasonable price.  

As far as the individual movies go I enjoyed all four. Revisiting three of them, I wasn't bored at all - even with Hôtel des Amériques (1981) that I saw, what feels like, about a month ago. Les Roseaux sauvages - Wild Reeds (1994) might be my favorite but I'd need to see J'embrasse pas - I Don't Kiss (1991) again as I also enjoyed my very first viewing of that Téchiné effort. For many Ma saison préférée - My Favorite Season (1993) may be the star of the set and Deneuve and Daniel Auteuil are superb. I think the films are very much worth the price of $25 - I am just disappointed that the transfers weren't on a more solid footing. Just don't be prepared to get lustrous visuals and expect a more pragmatic image quality.

The value (price for what you get) is another strong Lionsgate offering. Each film is about $6 each and from that standpoint the package is very highly recommended!           

Gary W. Tooze

DVD Menus


Hôtel des Amériques (1981)


Screen Captures




J'embrasse pas - I Don't Kiss (1991)


Screen Captures




Ma saison préférée - My Favorite Season (1993)



Screen Captures





Les Roseaux sauvages - Wild Reeds (1994)



Screen Captures





DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

Distribution Lionsgate - Region 1 - NTSC


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