DVDBeaver Newsletter for August 4th, 2005


Hi folks, a big newsletter this week....

Well, we are all over the board again with our content (John Wayne westerns, heavy on Chabrol murder mysteries, Wyler, Von Trier, Kitano, Polanski... Comparisons focus on Ozu, Zhang, Morrissey ,Chabrol again, and a late night supernatural, Vampire, Kung Fu classic...) - but first: the NEWS:

Many have heard but it bears repeating - Home Vision have been bought by Image Entertainment and in the process have struck a deal and will now be able to mount a full-fledged marketing campaigns for DVDs from Criterion. It remains to be seen what the eventual outcome will be for the consumers, but we are very sad to lose Home Visions dedication to the foreign film market in Region 1 DVDs. More HERE.

Great news for Beaver - we have struck a lucrative deal with YesAsia.com to become associates. After many individual transactions we have concluded they are a very worthy customer oriented partner and we encourage you to use the Beaver Homepage link and YesAsia search box as well as our individual review links to buy from their huge catalogue of Asian DVDs and other products.

Director's Chair database - Kubrick, Welles and Chabrol added - see Homepage (right column) for all.

Next week's director is one whose prolific Oscar statistics dwarf any of his peers... and he won Cannes too. Can you guess? - see this Sunday.

Feature DVD for the month of August - Mei Ah's (2 disc limited edition) - Region 0 - NTSC Eros - it is a three-part anthology film about eroticism by a trio of world cinema's outstanding directors. "The Hand" by Wong Kar Wai, "Equilibrium" by Steven Soderbergh, "The Dangerous Thread of Things" by Michelangelo Antonioni. this is purely on the strength of the film as the DVD may possibly be improved in a future release, but the Mei Ah isn't too shabby at all...

Imminent releases::
Bottom of the Sea (Damian Szifron, 2003) Home Vision, Chekhovian Motifs (Kira Muratova, 2002) Image, Columbo:Complete Third Season - Universal, Three Men and a Cradle (French original) (Coline Serreau, 1985) Home Vision, Astaire & Rogers Collection, Vol. 1 (Top Hat / Swing Time / Follow the Fleet / Shall We Dance / The Barkleys of Broadway) Warner, The Brown Bunny (Vincent Gallo, 2004) Sony, The Chaplin Revue (Chaplin) Warner [R2-UK], Flic Story (Jacques Deray, 1975) Kino, My Neighbors the Yamadas (Isao Takahata, 1999) Walt Disney Video, Krzysztof Kieslowski Collection (The Scar, Camera Buff, No End ,Blind Chance , A Short Film About Killing and A Short Film About Love) - Kino , Notre musique (Jean-Luc Godard, 2004) Optimum Releasing [R2-UK], Platform (Zhantai) (Zhang Ke Jia, 2000) New Yorker

Most Recent Reviews:

Three of the 10 disc John Wayne Boxset that Beaver is uncharacteristically endorsing HERE:
True Grit - cantankerous territorial marshal Rooster Cogburn, gets Wayne's belated acting Oscar.
The Sons of Katie Elder - The Elder boys return to Clearwater, Texas for their Mother's funeral...
The Shootist - A late Wayne triumph - James Stewart as the doctor, and Lauren Bacall, as the widow...

Three new 16X9 Kitano film/DVD transfers from down-under:
Violent Cop - The Japanese title means "Watch out, this man is dangerous" ... far more fitting
Boiling Point - a catalogue of elliptic and experimental editing...
Sonatine - Films that explain nothing often make everything clear....

Two from Polanksi
The Tragedy of Macbeth - Polanski imposes his vision to great effectiveness
Cul-de-Sac - Polanski's films bear marks of his main themes - sexual perversity, humiliation, and fear.

 Two from Wyler:
The Desperate Hours - In one of the most notable films on the theme of home-invasion assault in American suburbia...
The Collector - works on a subtler level of disturbing but undeniably human behavior.

Epidemic - is the first true von Trier film, cynical as hell, extremely provocative and utterly genial.

The Lady From Shanghai - a complex film noir with subtle plot twists and magnificent directorial techniques. Welles has some fun!

Just Before Nightfall - one of Chabrol's best films on his favorite theme - people who commit murder to their own astonishment.
Story of Women - Chabrol's films is an honest, original, and utterly absorbing film about abortion.
Poulet au vinaigre - proves that the classic French cinema has never been quite as dead as U.S. release policies have suggested.
La Fleur du mal - Chabrol does what he does best: charting the rhythms and rituals of upper middle class French life with a detached yet detailed eye.
Inspecteur Lavardin - 1985 follow-up to Claude Chabrol's Poulet au vinaigre, bringing back the same police inspector on another case...
Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert's classic novel about a passionate woman who rebels against the conventions that stifle her.
Betty - Chabrol's adaptation the novel - There is no plot, but we are hooked from the very first scene.
Blood Relatives - Chabrol's oddball, Canadian-set picture focuses on the sexual assault and murder of a teenage girl.
Cry of the Owl - awash with impressive images, montage and other cinematic values. But amid the aesthetics, something vital is missing.

October Criterions Announced

Le Samoura?/b> (Jean-Pierre Melville), The Wages of Fear (All-New Restored Special Edition, Henri-Georges Clouzot), Samurai Boxset including- Kill! (Kihachi Okamoto), Samurai Rebellion (Masaki Kobayashi), Samurai Spy (Masahiro Shinoda), Sword of the Beast (Hideo Gosha)

NEW Comparisons:

Bo Ying - Region 0 - NTSC "Late Spring" vs. Tartan (Ozu Volume 1: The Noriko Trilogy) - Region 0 - PAL vs. Panorama - Region 0 - NTSC

Artificial Eye - Region 2 - PAL "Merci Pour le Chocolat" vs. Remstar - Region 1 - NTSC

Carlotta Films (4-Disc Limited Collector's Edition) - Region 2 - PAL "Paul Morrissey Trilogy (Flesh, Heat, Trash)" vs. Tartan (3-Disc Collector's Edition) - Region 2 - PAL

Guang Dong Face Video (Chinese Extended SE version) - Region 0 - NTSC "Hero - extended cut" vs. EDKO Video Ltd. (Director's Cut) - Region 3 - NTSC

Intercontinental Video Ltd. (Digitally Remastered) - Region 0 - NTSC "Mr. Vampire" vs. Mega Star - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Fox - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Hong Kong Legends - Region 2,4 - PAL

We have 10 more Malata 393a Region Free Players at bargain-basement price! This may be the last shipment - So far - 120 sold! - 4 returns (defective) Best selling Region-Free player IN THE WORLD! If you haven't made the plunge yet see HERE and then start shopping HERE and HERE!

Please support our GoogleAds in our reviews and click when you see something of interest (Above the DVD Menus of every review!).

Fully Loaded DVDs      Used Art House and International DVDs HERE        Amazon's DVD Bargain page

P.S. We will be receiving screeners to review from the exciting new label Second Run DVD. Thanks for the endorsements from J. Rosenbaum and N. Wrigley and while I am name dropping - Dave Kehr (previously of the Chicago Reader and now NY Times DVD Columnist) has joined the DVDBeaver discussion ListServ located HERE...

 Take care and enjoy the Summer,