Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

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Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

Postby HGervais » Tue Nov 15, 2011 1:29 pm

What an awesome, and expensive slate of movies. Anatomy of a Murder? Holy crap.The line-up:

#387-La Jetée/Sans Soleil/Chris Marker
One of the most influential, radical science-fiction films ever made and a mind-bending free-form travelogue: La Jetée and Sans Soleil couldn’t seem more different—but they’re the twin pillars of an unparalleled and uncompromising career in cinema. A filmmaker, poet, novelist, photographer, editor, and now videographer and digital multimedia artist, Chris Marker has been challenging moviegoers, philosophers, and himself for years with his investigations of time, memory, and the rapid advancement of life on this planet. These two films—a tale of time travel told in still images and a journey to Africa and Japan—remain his best-loved and most widely seen.

Restored high-definition digital transfers, approved by director Chris Marker, with uncompressed monaural soundtracks
Two interviews with filmmaker Jean-Pierre Gorin
Chris on Chris, a video piece on Marker by filmmaker and critic Chris Darke
Two excerpts from the French television series Court-circuit (le magazine): a look at David Bowie’s music video for the song “Jump They Say,” inspired by La Jetée, and an analysis of Hitchcock’s Vertigo and its influence on Marker
• Junkopia, a six-minute film by Marker about the Emeryville Mudflats
• PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by Marker scholar Catherine Lupton, an interview with Marker, notes on the films and filmmaking by Marker, and more


#596-Three Outlaw Samurai/Hideo Gosha
This first film by the legendary Hideo Gosha is among the most canonized chambara (sword-fighting) films. An origin-story offshoot of a Japanese television series phenomenon of the same name, Three Outlaw Samurai is a classic in its own right. In it, a wandering, seen-it-all ronin (Tetsuro Tamba) becomes entangled in the dangerous business of two other samurai (Isamu Nagato and Mikijiro Hira), hired to execute a band of peasants who have kidnapped the daughter of a corrupt magistrate. With remarkable storytelling economy and thrilling action scenes, this is an expertly mounted tale of revenge and loyalty.

High-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
Trailer
New English subtitle translation
PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic Bilge Ebiri


#597-Tiny Furniture/Lena Dunham
Lena Dunham got her start making YouTube videos, but she emerged as a major talent thanks to the breakthrough success of this exceptionally sharp comedy, which garnered the twenty-four-year-old writer-director-actor comparisons to the likes of Woody Allen. The filmmaker herself plays Aura, a recent college graduate who returns to New York and moves back in with her mother and sister (played by their real-life counterparts). Though Aura is gripped by stasis and confusion about her future, Dunham locates endless sources of refreshing humor in her plight. As painfully confessional as it is endlessly amusing, Tiny Furniture is an authentic, incisive portrait of a young woman at a crossroads.

New digital transfer, with DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
Director Lena Dunham talks about filmmaking and autobiography in a new interview with writer and filmmaker Nora Ephron
New interview with writer-director Paul Schrader
Creative Nonfiction, Dunham’s first feature film
Four short films by Dunham
Trailer
PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Phillip Lopate


#598-World on a Wire/Rainer Werner Fassbinder
World on a Wire is a gloriously paranoid, boundlessly inventive take on the future from German wunderkind Rainer Werner Fassbinder. With dashes of Stanley Kubrick, Kurt Vonnegut, and Philip K. Dick, as well as a flavor entirely his own, Fassbinder tells the noir-spiked tale of a reluctant action hero, Fred Stiller (Klaus Lowitsch), a cybernetics engineer who uncovers a massive corporate conspiracy. At risk? (Virtual) reality as we know it. Originally made for German television, this recently rediscovered, three-and-a-half-hour labyrinth is a satiric and surreal look at the weird world of tomorrow from one of cinema’s kinkiest geniuses.

New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
Fassbinder’s “World on a Wire”: Looking Ahead to Today, a fifty-minute documentary about the making of the film by Juliane Lorenz
New interview with German-film scholar Gerd Gemünden
New English subtitles
Trailer for the 2010 theatrical release
PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic Ed Halter


#599-Vanya on 42nd Street/Louis Malle
In the nineties, André Gregory mounted a series of spare, private performances of Anton Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya in a crumbling Manhattan playhouse. These treasures of pure theater would have been lost to time had they not been captured on film, with subtle cinematic brilliance, by Louis Malle. In Vanya on 42nd Street, a stellar cast of actors—including Wallace Shawn, Julianne Moore, Brooke Smith, and George Gaynes—embark on a full read-through of Uncle Vanya (adapted into English by David Mamet); the result is as memorable and emotional a screen version of Chekhov’s masterpiece as one could ever hope to see. This film, which turned out to be Malle’s last, is a tribute to the playwright’s devastating work as well as to the creative process itself.

New high-definition digital restoration, with 2.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
New documentary featuring interviews with André Gregory, the play’s director; actors Lynn Cohen, George Gaynes, Julianne Moore, Larry Pine, Wallace Shawn, and Brooke Smith; and producer Fred Berner
Trailer
PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Steven Vineberg and a 1994 on-set report by film critic Amy Taubin


#600-Anatomy of a Murder/Otto Preminger
A virtuoso James Stewart plays a small-town Michigan lawyer who takes on a difficult case: that of a young Army lieutenant (Ben Gazzara) accused of murdering the local tavern owner who he believes raped his wife (Lee Remick). This gripping, envelope-pushing courtroom potboiler, the most popular film from Hollywood provocateur Otto Preminger, was groundbreaking for the frankness of its discussion of sex—more than anything else, it is a striking depiction of the power of words. With its outstanding supporting cast—including a young George C. Scott as a fiery prosecuting attorney and legendary real-life attorney Joseph N. Welch as the judge—and influential jazz score by Duke Ellington, Anatomy of a Murder is a Hollywood landmark; it was nominated for seven Oscars, including best picture.

New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
New alternate 5.1 soundtrack, presented in DTS-HD Master Audio on the Blu-ray edition
• New interview with Otto Preminger biographer Foster Hirsch
Critic Gary Giddins explores Duke Ellington’s score in a new interview
A look at the relationship between graphic designer Saul Bass and Preminger with Bass biographer Pat Kirkham
Newsreel footage from the set
Excerpts from a 1967 episode of Firing Line, featuring Preminger in discussion with William F. Buckley Jr.
Excerpts from the work in progress Anatomy of “Anatomy”: The Making of a Movie
Behind-the-scenes photographs by Life magazine’s Gjon Mili
Trailer, featuring on-set footage
PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Nick Pinkerton and a 1959 Life magazine article on real-life lawyer Joseph N. Welch, who plays the judge in the film
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Re: Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

Postby BenShultz » Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:49 pm

World on a Wire sounds freaking amazing. Plus, I believe it's based on the same book that inspired The Thirteenth Floor. I loved that movie beyond all reason when I was a kid.
Oh, you're paying way too much for worms, man. Who's your worm guy?
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Re: Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

Postby Steve T Power » Tue Nov 15, 2011 7:42 pm

Definitely intrigued by "World on a Wire" (and yeah, I'm a bit of a Thirteenth Floor fan), but after watching the trailer, I have to say I was a little turned off by the 70s-ness of it all. Not so sure about the execution.

Three Outlaw Samurai sounds pretty fantastic though.
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Re: Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

Postby Andrew Forbes » Wed Nov 16, 2011 9:21 am

World on a Wire!
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Re: Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

Postby cdouglas » Wed Nov 16, 2011 9:34 am

Some interesting titles, most of which I haven't seen. World on a Wire and Three Outlaw Samurai definitely sound compelling. Vanya on 42nd Street also sounds intriguing, though Malle is pretty hit-and-miss for me. Really dig Anatomy on a Murder; it's been a while since I've revisited that one.
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Re: Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

Postby Andrew Forbes » Wed Nov 16, 2011 10:10 am

I just watched the trailer for Tiny Furniture. It looks unbearably pretentious.
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Re: Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

Postby HGervais » Wed Nov 16, 2011 11:37 am

Tiny Furniture is certainly dividing the Criterion classes in a pretty violent fashion. Three Outlaw Samurai really looks interesting to me after reading up on the film and its director. I saw Vanya on 42nd Street when it opened in a movie theater not too far from where they made the film and remember liking it a lot. World on a Wire is one of those things I've wanted to see for a long time but never have, so I'm looking forward to that as well but Anatomy of a Murder is the real prize here. Preminger's best film, one of Jimmy Stewart's best roles, Lee Remick's best role, Duke Ellington score...it's just a great movie. I can hardly wait.
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Re: Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

Postby BenSaylor » Wed Nov 16, 2011 8:22 pm

I haven't seen Tiny Furniture but I'm not crazy about this Criterion/IFC deal so far, although it did give us Che and Carlos (I think). Out of the February bunch, World on a Wire interests me the most.
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Re: Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

Postby Steve T Power » Wed Nov 16, 2011 9:21 pm

BenSaylor wrote:I haven't seen Tiny Furniture but I'm not crazy about this Criterion/IFC deal so far, although it did give us Che and Carlos (I think). Out of the February bunch, World on a Wire interests me the most.


And Hunger as well I think, which was a pretty amazing flick.
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Re: Criterion For The Second Month of 2012

Postby BenSaylor » Thu Nov 17, 2011 6:12 am

Steve T Power wrote:
BenSaylor wrote:I haven't seen Tiny Furniture but I'm not crazy about this Criterion/IFC deal so far, although it did give us Che and Carlos (I think). Out of the February bunch, World on a Wire interests me the most.


And Hunger as well I think, which was a pretty amazing flick.


(Smacks forehead) Can't believe I forgot that one. Truly a great film.
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