Classics and Other Films on DVD (Oct. 20, 2014)

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Published on: October 20, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

All That Jazz

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: …doesn’t really start high-kicking until the heart attack strikes and Gideon’s anesthesia-induced musical fantasies kick in.

Black Sunday

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

The Brides of Dracula

Roderick Heath @ Ferdy on Films

  • Excerpt: A fiercely concentrated and lushly executed work of Hammer’s peculiar brand of Technicolor Gothic.

Grace Kelly Collection

Paul Mavis @ DVDTalk

  • Excerpt: The few times her directors were able to tap into that certain…something true movie stars possess, her visceral effect was palpable. However, as an actress….

Hiroshima Mon Amour

Budd Wilkins @ Slant Magazine

  • Excerpt: Like the anonymous entwined bodies glimpsed in its opening moments, things tend to commingle in Alain Resnais’s revolutionary first feature, Hiroshima Mon Amour.Being essentially a film for two voices, Hiroshima Mon Amour lends itself to the monologue or solo recitative.

The Kid

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: “The Kid” is significant in cinema history because it is one of the first films to combine comedy and drama as a succinct filmic form.

Rubin and Ed

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: Crispin Glover playing something very near the Crispin Glover-iest character ever written.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Oct. 13, 2014)

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Published on: October 13, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Bedknobs and Broomsticks

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

  • Excerpt: It’s a very fun romp through the wild and wacky world of witchcraft, so jump on the bed and let’s go!

Bonnie and Clyde

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: Equal parts true-crime exposé, dysfunctional love story, and Depression-era think piece, the picture underscores American police departments’ longstanding proclivity for short cuts to justice, i.e. murder.

Chase a Crooked Shadow

Kristen Lopez @ Awards Circuit

Drive

Blake Howard @ Graffiti With Punctuation

Ghost in the Shell

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: … less exploitative and far more thoughtful than most of its kin… an invigorating animation for the mind and eye.

Hiroshima Mon Amour

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: Fierce in its condemnation of America’s racist military attacks against Hiroshima and Nagasaki that killed a quarter of a million Japanese citizens, “Hiroshima Mon Amour” bridges a gap between death and life via a doomed love affair that helps heal two emotionally damaged people from different races.

Ilsa: She Wolf of the SS

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: Even by modern cinema’s jaded standards, “She Wolf of the SS” remains a powerfully sexy, campy, blood-soaked, and fetishistic tour de force.

Maurice

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

Vertigo

Matthew McKernan @ FilmWhinge

  • Excerpt: Vertigo is a film about passion and love and trying to overcome the past, though all of these themes are problematized – the film is rarely as simple as it looks…

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Oct. 6, 2014)

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Published on: October 6, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Cabaret

Carlos del Río @ El rincón de Carlos del Río [Spanish]

  • Excerpt: Simplemente genial.

Gone With the Wind

Jim Dixon @ Examiner.com

  • Excerpt: If you haven’t seen “Gone With the Wind,” you don’t know the whole story of the big Hollywood movie, and if you haven’t seen “Gone With the Wind” on the big screen, you haven’t seen “Gone With the Wind.”

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Sep. 29, 2014)

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Published on: September 29, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Dragonwyck

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

The Innocents

Tony Dayoub @ Cinema Viewfinder

  • Excerpt: Disquieting, if not necessarily horrifying, THE INNOCENTS is a psychosexual take on THE TURN OF THE SCREW.

Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Werid Movies

  • Excerpt: Wes Anderson’s most interesting and strangest movie.

Macbeth (1971)

Tony Dayoub @ Cinema Viewfinder

  • Excerpt: 1971’s MACBETH is one of Polanski’s most unjustly maligned movies, perhaps because of its unapologetic wallowing in dark themes coming so closely after the murder of Polanski’s wife Sharon Tate by the Manson Family. That it was Playboy founder Hugh Hefner’s first and ultimately only venture into cinema may have been another reason.

Picnic at Hanging Rock

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Werid Movies

  • Excerpt: This gauzy meditation on sexual repression and loss can have a hypnotic effect on those susceptible to its mysterious moods, while others find it an inconclusive bore. Both sides have an argument, but in general, the good here outweighs the bland.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Sep. 22, 2014)

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Published on: September 22, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

The African Queen

Rick Aragon @ Rick’s Cafe Texan

  • Excerpt: There is something delightful in seeing two great actors play to and against type.

Belle de Jour: Bunuel’s Masterpiece

Emanuel Levy @ www.EmanuelLevy.com

  • Excerpt: Belle de Jour is Bunuel”s most accessible and populr film, a highlight of his career as well as landmark of Surrealist Cinema

Cinema Paradiso

Carlos del Río @ El rincón de Carlos del Río [Spanish]

  • Excerpt: Cinema Paradiso es una película tierna, nostálgica, y divertida.

A Hard Day’s Night

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: The spirit embodied by Lester’s Beatles was welcoming, and it wasn’t about chronological age: it was about choosing “parading” over propriety.

Phantom of the Paradise

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: Made in the heart of the midnight movie craze, when directors were free to take (relatively) big budgets and take crazy chances with them, De Palma included a number of stylistically off-balance scenes that surely would have been excised, to ‘Phantom”s detriment, in a less forgiving film era.

Sweet Smell of Success

Rick Aragon @ Rick’s Cafe Texan

  • Excerpt: Sweet Smell of Success is an angry film, brilliant, but highly cynical, reflecting the moral morass that the characters in this demimonde of nightclubs and backroom deals to get a line in a newspaper column work in.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Sep. 15, 2014)

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Published on: September 15, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

All That Jazz

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

  • Excerpt: The elevator pitch for All That Jazz was something like The Death of Bob Fosse: The Musical, but it could just as easily have been The Death of the 1970s. This is where all the excess and the partying and the ugliness caught up with a generation.

Around the World in 80 Days

Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews

  • Excerpt: How this film won the Academy Award for Best Picture must certainly be one of the great anomalies in the Academy’s illustrious history. Now reflect on the fact that it beat The King and I, The Ten Commandments and Giant and the win seems even more egregious.

Arrowsmith

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: Though overly dramatic with some stumbles here and there in terms of narrative cohesion, John Ford’s 1931 Sinclair Lewis adaptation Arrowsmith is a solid vehicle for star Ronald Colman. The handsome actor stars as a struggling, well-meaning doctor looking to be a “hero of health.”

The Cabinet of Dr Caligari

Jennie Kermode @ Eye For Film

Forrest Gump

Jason Bailey @ Flavorwire

  • Excerpt: If you can separate the film from all the cultural baggage that it’s acquired over the past two decades, and approach it with something like fresh eyes, it’s sort of surprising what an odd and risky movie it is. Director Robert Zemeckis pitches the tale as neither comedy nor drama, but as a loose, vignette-heavy mixture of pop history and folk storytelling.

Forrest Gump

Daniel Carlson @ Movie Mezzanine

Ghostbusters

Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews

  • Excerpt: I still cite Ghostbusters any time I’m asked to list my top movies. I’ll admit my love is influenced by nostalgia, but I find it has lost none of its luster.

Love Streams

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

  • Excerpt: Such is Cassavetes’ jagged storytelling style, however. His narratives are rarely clean, and his expression as ragged as the fashions he outfits his actors in. Hence the choppy nature of Love Streams’ opening scenes, or the disconcerting shifts over time and even reality.

M

Jennie Kermode @ Eye For Film

The Mating Season

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

Mulholland Drive

Simon Miraudo @ Junkee

Obsessione

Marilyn Ferdinand @ Ferdy on Films

  • Excerpt: The second film version of James M. Cain’s novel The Postman Always Rings Twice, the film was banned after Mussolini’s son rejected it as not reflecting the reality of the Italian people, and Visconti was forced to turn over all prints and negatives for destruction. We only have this valuable document of wartime Italian filmmaking, as well as Visconti’s pungent directorial debut, because Visconti held back one negative.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Sep. 8, 2014)

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Published on: September 8, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

All That Jazz

Matthew Lucas @ From the Front Row

  • Excerpt: It was, in many ways, a vibrant and visceral assertion of what it meant to be Bob Fosse. More than that, it’s a full throated exclamation of what it means to be an artist.

Armored Attack!

M. Enois Duarte @ High-Def Digest.com

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

Cotton Comes to Harlem

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: A highpoint of blaxploitation and of 1970s action movies in general, Cotton Comes to Harlem is smart, rollicking crime picture that never takes itself too seriously even while it has very serious things to say.

Cry-Baby

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: As a lightly magical realist comedy, ‘Cry-Baby’ is fairly successful, although of course many Waters fans will miss the nasty grit of the trashpile 1970s movies.

Gigi

Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews

  • Excerpt: The social mores and customs are amusingly dated, but that’s really the point now isn’t it? Let’s just say, they don’t make ‘em like this anymore.

The Party

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: Built around a short outline by director Blake Edwards, The Party sets Peter Sellers loose to do what he does best: create elaborate situational slapstick. The results are often hilarious, occasionally surprising, and even a little sweet.

Portrait of Jennie

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

  • Excerpt: The majority of the film is rather bland, mired in romantic conventions, but a sharp and death-defying third act saves it.

The Vanquished

M. Enois Duarte @ High-Def Digest.com

Vengeance is Mine

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Sep. 1, 2014)

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Published on: September 1, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Another Life

Mathieu Li-Goyette @ Panorama-cinéma [French]

The Birdcage

Simon Miraudo @ Quickflix

Easy Rider

Jason Bailey @ Flavorwire

  • Excerpt: he problem with taking a purely skeptical view of Easy Rider — which is easy to do, once you start picking at the picture’s scabs — is that so much of the movie that still has a pulse, still vibrates with such manic energy that you can shut out the rest and understand why it got everyone’s hair up back in ’69.

The Exorcist (Director’s Cut)

Jennie Kermode @ Eye For Film

The Gold Diggers

Donald Levit @ ReelTalk Movie Reviews

Lawrence of Arabia

Jonathan Richards @ www.jonrichardsplace.com

  • Excerpt: It is safe to say that there has never been a more electrifying career launch in movie history than Peter O’Toole’s in Lawrence of Arabia.

Murder, My Sweet

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

  • Excerpt: It doesn’t boast the star power of The Big Sleep, but it doesn’t need that with a story and acting as good as it gives.

Oldboy (2003)

Daniel Lackey @ The Nightmare Gallery

Somebody Up There Likes Me

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

  • Excerpt: http://journeysinclassicfilm.com/2014/08/19/somebody-up-there-likes-me-1956/

Y Tu Mamá También

Mario Alegre @ Primer Hora [Spanish]
Jason Bailey @ Flavorwire

  • Excerpt: The further we get from ‘Y Tu Mamá,’ the more it feels like a standalone work, a nakedly personal film from a director whose films lean more toward universal experience and spectacle.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Aug. 25, 2014)

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Published on: August 25, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

The Big Sleep

Roderick Heath @ Ferdy on Films

  • Excerpt: The Big Sleep, as its weird, pithily poetic title suggests, is far from realistic. It is indeed one of the most fervently delirious works from classic Hollywood.

The Bride of Frankenstein

Stacia Kissick Jones @ Next Projection

Call Her Savage

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

The Children’s Hour

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: This may be Audrey Hepburn’s finest dramatic performance. She offers strength and sympathy, but also heartbreak.

City Lights

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

  • Excerpt: It’s a Classic Film, and Chaplin deserves his spot in the pantheon of comics.

Donkey Skin

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

  • Excerpt: Stylistically, Donkey Skin is fascinating. Demy establishes a kind of shabby chic.

Marty (1955)

M. Enois Duarte @ High-Def Digest.com

The Unforgiven

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: The only western that Audrey Hepburn ever made, The Unforgiven pairs the actress with co-star and producer Burt Lancaster and legendary director John Huston for a decent if not dazzling cowboy drama.

The Wind Will Carry Us

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: As with most of Abbas Kiarostami’s signature work, it’s as inscrutable as it is involving, relying on the audience’s powers of observation as much as that of the auteur.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Aug. 18, 2014)

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Published on: August 18, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Recent Home Video Releases

The Adventures of Ichabod & Mr. Toad/Fun and Fancy Free

Josh Spiegel @ Movie Mezzanine

Bedknobs and Broomsticks

Josh Spiegel @ Movie Mezzanine

Brannigan

Kristen Lopez @ Awards Circuit

Divergent

M. Enois Duarte @ High-Def Digest.com

A Haunted House 2

M. Enois Duarte @ High-Def Digest.com

Mickey, Donald, Goofy: The Three Musketeers

Josh Spiegel @ Movie Mezzanine

Mr. Majestyk

Peter Nellhaus @ Coffee Coffee and more Coffee

Need for Speed

Josh Spiegel @ Movie Mezzanine

The Other Woman

M. Enois Duarte @ High-Def Digest.com

We Won’t Grow Old Together

Peter Nellhaus @ Coffee Coffee and more Coffee

Other Reviews from 2012 and earlier

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Aug. 11, 2014)

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Published on: August 11, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Cleo From 5 to 7

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: Considered the “mother of the nouvelle vague,” dating back to her first film “La Pointe Courte” (1954), Agnes Varda broke new ground for the movement in 1961 with “Cleo from 5 to 7,” an unprecedented model of cinematic poetry.

A Hard Day’s Night

Beth Accomando @ KPBS Cinema Junkie

  • Excerpt: At a time when Hollywood is finding it more and more difficult to deliver anything fresh, you’re best filmgoing bet is an old classic like “A Hard Day’s Night.” It won’t disappoint you and it might even make fans out of a new generation of filmgoers.

Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews

  • Excerpt: The Beatles come across as likable and witty. It simplifies their personalities and then amplifies them in short easy to digest sound bites.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: Philip Kaufman’s venerable revamping of Don Siegel’s 1956 black-and-white sci-fi horror classic delved deeper into nitty-gritty details of a pod-induced mass transformation of humans into emotionless doppelgangers.

Play It Again – Blue Velvet

Glenn Dunks @ Quickflix

Point Blank

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: … packed with classic style and star power, and has the perfect ratio of arthouse cool to gritty action.

The Searchers

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

True Grit (1969)

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

The Umbrellas of Cherbourg

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

  • Excerpt: Demy’s style is pronounced, yet never insistent, blossoming here in a kind of controlled explosion. He pulls a deep sorrow out of this fundamentally romantic tale, toying with our emotions, invigorating us with the rush of love and then letting it slowly leaking out, nearly giving in to despair.

The Young Girls of Rochefort

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

  • Excerpt: Jacques Demy’s take on the big American musical, 1967’s The Young Girls of Rochefort, is pure joy. From the first frame to the last, it’s packed with smiles and passion and a giddy sense of its own fun.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Aug. 4, 2014)

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Published on: August 4, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Bay of Angels

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

  • Excerpt: Jeanne Moreau’s Jackie is a classic femme fatale. And Bay of Angels is essentially a crime film without any actual crime.

The Big Chill

Tony Dayoub @ Cinema Viewfinder

  • Excerpt: …THE BIG CHILL was an impactful film that started the conversation in middle America that, for better or worse, has evolved into today’s culture wars

Born Yesterday

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: Judy Holliday is a delight, a master of physical comedy and also a killer with both slow burns and quick witticisms. It’s that most wonderful of romantic movies where the object of affection seduces the audience at the same time as the folks in the movie.

Cleo from 5 to 7

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: During Varga’s 13-chapter story, Cleo sheds her self-and-societally-imposed disguises toward exposing her true identity. “Cleo” isn’t even her real name.

First Men in the Moon

Steve Biodrowski @ Cinefantastique Online

  • Excerpt: A 50th Anniversary Celebration of Ray Harryhausen’s 1964 adaptation of H.G. Wells

Fitzcarraldo

Dan Jardine @ Cinemania

  • Excerpt: The film confirms that dreamers and their obsessions can give us otherwise unimaginable moments of pure beauty.

Grace Kelly Collection

Tony Dayoub @ Cinema Viewfinder

  • Excerpt: …with a grand total of only 11 movies in a film career that only spanned 5 years, who knows what Kelly was truly capable of with more seasoning.

Tell Your Children

Paulo Peralta @ CinEuphoria [Portuguese]

Wild Strawberries

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: “Wild Strawberries” is a thematically abundant film that fluidly condenses a lifetime’s worth of experience into succinct cinematic fragments under Ingmar Bergman’s complex construction of abstract corollaries.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Jul. 28, 2014)

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Published on: July 28, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Atlantic City

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: “Atlantic City” is full of compact social editorializing that elevates its seemingly run-of-the-mill trappings into something sublime by way of its emotionally dependent characters. The depth of this drama lies in how deeply you feel for these individuals.

Jane Eyre (1944)

M. Enois Duarte @ High-Def Digest.com

Lola

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

  • Excerpt: Demy sees his heroine as more than just a pretty object for men to desire, but an example of what that desire forces women to do in order to survive. Lola pushes and pulls as necessary to maintain control, accepting the male gaze and bending it as it suits her.

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

  • Excerpt: Mr. Smith Goes to Washington is a classic which lives up to the reputation around it.

Picnic at Hanging Rock

Tony Dayoub @ Cinema Viewfinder

  • Excerpt: HANGING ROCK is a subtler and kinder expression of burgeoning womanhood than the darker, more overt THE BEGUILED in which Clint Eastwood’s introduction into a similar environment causes the all-female staff and students to lose their heads over his presence.

Pink Flamingos

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: John Waters’s second movie not only set the low bar for just how gross a midnight movie could be in 1972, “Pink Flamingos” remains to this day the most cogently transgressive and anarchic film ever made.

Red River

Tony Dayoub @ Cinema Viewfinder

  • Excerpt: Intentional or not, consider RED RIVER the first shot across the bow of traditional, personality-driven Hollywood acting by the New York-based Actors Studio proponents of the Method.

Wild Strawberries

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: “Wild Strawberries” is a thematically abundant film that fluidly condenses a lifetime’s worth of experience into succinct cinematic fragments under Ingmar Bergman’s complex construction of abstract corollaries.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Jul. 21, 2014)

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Published on: July 21, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Atlantic City

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: “Atlantic City” is full of compact social editorializing that elevates its seemingly run-of-the-mill trappings into something sublime by way of its emotionally dependent characters.

The Big Chill

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

  • Excerpt: nd yet, again, I must stress, The Big Chill is an enjoyable movie. I don’t think it’s a very good one, but it’s pretty easy to watch.

Fort Apache

Stacia Kissick Jones @ She Blogged By Night

It Happened One Night

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

Mr. Deeds Goes to Town

Kristen Lopez @ Awards Circuit

  • Excerpt: Mr. Deeds Goes to a Town is a heartwarming slice of Americana with picture-perfect performances from Jean Arthur and Gary Cooper.

Paris Blues

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: Martin Ritt’s 1961 jazz-infused drama Paris Blues is one of those films that, once you’ve seen it, you’re kind of shocked that people don’t talk about it more. A joint vehicle for Sidney Poitier and Paul Newman, Paris Blues is a Kazan-like social narrative that juxtaposes new Hollywood method with old Hollywood romanticism and somehow let’s both win without compromising either.

Pink Flamingos

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: John Waters’s second movie not only set the low bar for just how gross a midnight movie could be in 1972, “Pink Flamingos” remains to this day the most cogently transgressive and anarchic film ever made.

Separate Tables

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: Delbert Mann’s cinematic adaptation of Terence Rattigan’s Separate Tables is a terrific drama that grapples with some heavy issues with a delicate touch and sensitive insight. An all-star cast, including Oscar-winners David Niven and Deborah Kerr, as well as a forceful performance by Burt Lancaster, brings the varying population of a British hotel to life.

Sex, Lies, and Videotape

Jennie Kermode @ Eye For Film

To Catch a Thief

Jennie Kermode @ Eye For Film

Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory

Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews

  • Excerpt: Over the years, however, the film achieved the status as a cult film and is now widely accepted as an outright classic. It’s easy to see why.

You Can’t Take It With You

Kristen Lopez @ Journeys in Classic Film

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Jul. 14, 2014)

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Published on: July 14, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

7 Women

Roderick Heath @ Ferdy on Films

  • Excerpt: John Ford’s 7 Women stands up with a crucially similar film released the same year, Robert Wise’s The Sand Pebbles, as the first work put out by Hollywood that feels assuredly like a metaphor for America’s deepening involvement in Vietnam.

Caught (1949)

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: The tug-of-war for the lady’s affections touches on some very dark topics, and the bad things that Ryan does to his bride are very bad indeed, making for a disarming, potent tale about the extreme vagaries of the heart.

The Lost Moment

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: Martin Gabel’s Henry James-adaptation The Lost Moment may be the actor’s only directorial effort, but it’s a fairly strong one all the same. Robert Cummings stars as a conniving publisher looking to secure the love letters of a long-departed romantic poet, sidling up to Agnes Moorehead, the aging recipient of those missives.

The Rise and Fall of “Legs” Diamond

Peter Nellhaus @ Coffee Coffee and more Coffee

Tora! Tora! Tora!

Roderick Heath @ This Island Rod

  • Excerpt: The filmmakers make it clear that what’s coming, from Midway to the Atom Bomb, will be a calamity, and any time this Pandora’s box is opened is a grim one for humanity in general.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Jul. 7, 2014)

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Published on: July 7, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Atlantic City

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: “Atlantic City” is an understated drama, full of compact social editorializing, that elevates its seemingly run-of-the-mill trappings into something sublime by way of its emotionally dependent characters.

The Bitter Tea of General Yen

Marilyn Ferdinand @ Ferdy on Films

  • Excerpt: In this subversive Pre-Code romance, Capra builds a dreamy, romantic setting full of sparkling jewels, cherry-blossom moons, caressing costumes, and candle-kissed lighting. Stanwyck glows, her unusual beauty enhanced by Capra’s flattering, soft-focus close-ups, her tears like diamonds on her cheeks.

The Bootleg Files: The Thief and the Cobbler

Phil Hall @ Film Threat

  • Excerpt: A consideration of Richard Williams’ legendary unfinished animated epic

The Divine Lady

Rick Aragon @ Rick’s Cafe Texan

  • Excerpt: On the whole I found The Divine Lady to hold up rather well. It told its story well, the acting was not exagerrated (mostly) and as a bonus, it integrated sound effects into a silent film to where it didn’t topple one or the other.

Do the Right Thing

Kenji Fujishima @ The House Next Door

Hearts and Minds

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

Matt Brown @ Twitch

Judex

Jamie S. Rich @ Criterion Confessions

  • Excerpt: For a movie that features both a wicked villainess in a black catsuit and a pretty circus acrobat (Sylva Koscina, Juliet of the Spirits) who randomly shows up to help out, Judex is decidedly unsexy. None of the relationships have much sizzle, nor does the action really ever take off.

Stations of the Elevated

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: Kirchheimer relies on formal compositions of New York’s subway rail yards, elevated platforms, and surrounding locations to tell a complex tale of environmental and urban dislocation where pop art billboards — depicting gigantic hamburgers, bikini-clad women, and a male smoker whose enormous mouth issues forth billowing smoke — inform ghetto children who draw on the art and atmosphere around them to create their own original art form.

The Wicker Man (1973)

Diego Salgado @ Diagonal [Spanish]

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Jun. 30, 2014)

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Published on: June 30, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Batman

Kenji Fujishima @ The House Next Door

China Gate

Peter Nellhaus @ Coffee Coffee and more Coffee

The Last Day of Summer

Marilyn Ferdinand @ Ferdy on Films

  • Excerpt: Winner of 1958 Grand Prix at the International Festival of Documentary and Short Feature Films in Venice, The Last Day of Summer has the brevity of most experimental films, and it creates a dreamlike ambiguity that makes an almost too-subtle comment on World War II.

Vertigo

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: Did any movie produced under the Hollywood studio system ever torture its protagonist as mercilessly as ‘Vertigo’ torments Scottie Ferguson?

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Jun. 23, 2014)

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Published on: June 23, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

The Night of the Hunter

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: Although cinephiles may weep for all the movies Charles Laughton never made, in a way it is appropriate that “Night of the Hunter” is his only directorial effort. It cements this masterpiece’s singularity and highlights its legendary qualities.

Night Train (Pociag)

Marilyn Ferdinand @ Ferdy on Films

  • Excerpt: Newly restored Polish classic examines travelers on an overnight train to a seaside resort. Emotions seethe, but the film does not seem anxious to give up its secrets—like any group of strangers sharing a space by necessity, no one is presented as an open book.

The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946)

Tim Brayton @ Antagony & Ecstasy

The Shining

Tim Brayton @ Antagony & Ecstasy

A Woman Under the Influence

Stacia Kissick Jones @ Spectrum Culture Online

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Jun. 16, 2014)

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Published on: June 16, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Ghostbusters

Joseph Proimakis @ Popaganda.gr [Greek]

  • Excerpt: The iconic film that ushered visual effects into the realm of comedy turns 30 years old

The Man in the Glass Booth

Paulo Peralta @ CinEuphoria [Portuguese]

Sergeant York

Tim Brayton @ Antagony & Ecstasy

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Jun. 9, 2014)

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Published on: June 9, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Barry Lyndon

Tim Brayton @ Antagony & Ecstasy

Dante’s Inferno (1935)

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: The five minutes or so in the final half of Harry Lachman’s 1935 melodrama Dante’s Inferno where the film takes a quick turn into the underworld is one of the more impressive versions of Hell ever created on a Hollywood soundstage. The rest of the movie lacks that original vision, however.

Montana Moon

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: These musical bits provide a nice diversion and pad out an otherwise thin script. Most of the movie’s appeal for modern eyes will rest with Crawford, whose onscreen presence and versatility impresses more and more the deeper any viewer digs into her filmography and the further away they get from the misshapen Mommie Dearest clichés.

Mr. Soft Touch

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: If you’re tired of the same old Christmas movies and looking for more alternative choices, then may I recommend you consider the 1949 Glenn Ford vehicle Mr. Soft Touch? It’s a heart-warming crime film set on Christmas Eve and spilling over onto Christmas Day, and it’s full of the kind of family-centric humor and redemptive themes that make for the best holiday entertainment.

Sin City

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: There is a fundamental immaturity about this movie that panders to boys’ least subtle sex and violence fantasies… But, there is also a genuine pulp poetry in the staging that lifts the finished product above its starting material.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (Jun. 2, 2014)

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Published on: June 2, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: There are moments of pure craziness in Sam Peckinpah’s 1974 bloodbath Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia. It’s a revenge picture where the revenge only emerges by circumstance and changes course regularly, making friends of a severed head in a bag and the man who went looking for it, hoping to get paid by taking down the lout who just happened to sleep with his woman.

Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark (1973)

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Five Fingers

Bob Cashill @ Cineaste

  • Excerpt: James Mason in an Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s underrated spy thriller.

Glen or Glenda

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: ‘Glen or Glenda’ is as much legend as movie. Watching it is like being initiated into a secret cult of coolness.

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (May 26, 2014)

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Published on: May 26, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Bang! Bang! You’re Dead!

Joshua Brunsting @ The CriterionCast

The Birds

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: The crow has long been an omen of death, but never have our fine feathered friends been so conspicuously thantatotic as in Alfred Hitchcock’s first true horror (as opposed to suspense) film.

Boyhood

Blake Howard @ Graffiti With Punctuation

  • Excerpt: Linklater and Coltrane portray being a boy with both glorious and downright uncomfortable authenticity. Boyhood is a one of a kind experience.

Bug (1975)

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Countess Dracula

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Deranged

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Dr. Phibes Rises Again

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

The Fury

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

God Told Me To

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Mysterious Skin

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: …plays something like “Midnight Cowboy” with a touch of “The X-Files.”

Notre Musique

Joshua Brunsting @ The CriterionCast

Overlord

Joshua Brunsting @ The CriterionCast

The Piano

Philip Concannon @ Mostly Film

Scream, Blacula, Scream

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Squirm

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Tim Holt Western Classics Collection: Vol. 4

A.J. Hakari @ Classic Movie Guide

The Trip to Italy

Blake Howard @ Graffiti With Punctuation

  • Excerpt: The Trip to Italy is just an assault of laughs, whether it’s duelling impressions, sketches or bickering. However, it’s in that vulnerable state, when your face is sore from laughter and your ears are reverberating with Michael Caine’s voice that Winterbottom torpedos you with emotional truths. The people you love should keep you grounded, tease you incessantly and dwarf your accomplishments; because they know it makes you better.

X-Men: Days of Future Past

Blake Howard @ Graffiti With Punctuation

  • Excerpt: X-Men: Days of Future Past is an extremely satisfying closure to this chapter of the X-Men universe.

You Only Live Once

Joshua Brunsting @ The CriterionCast

Recent Home Video Releases

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (May 19, 2014)

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Published on: May 19, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

Applause (1929)

Tim Brayton @ Antagony & Ecstasy

Bad Dreams / Visiting Hours

M. Enois Duarte @ High-DefDigest.com

Before Dawn (1933)

Dennis Schwartz @ Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews

Burden of Dreams

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: [VIDEO ESSAY] Les Blank’s haunting documentary about the four years Werner Herzog spent making “Fitzcarraldo” is such an essential companion piece to the actual film that it seems irresponsible for any would-be audience member to view only one of the two.

The Burglar (1957)

Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk

  • Excerpt: The Burglar is a bizarre, almost impressionistic take on the usual small-time heist drama. I say almost, as you’d be hard-pressed to make a case for its disjointed quirks being intentional. When it comes down to it, The Burglar is a bit of a mess.

Die, Monster, Die!

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

For You I Die

Dennis Schwartz @ Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews

From Beyond the Grave

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Godzilla (1998)

A.J. Hakari @ Attack from Planet B

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (May 12, 2014)

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Published on: May 12, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

The Amityville Horror Trilogy

A.J. Hakari @ Classic Movie Guide

Assault on Precinct 13 (1976)

A.J. Hakari @ Classic Movie Guide

The Big Parade

A.J. Hakari @ ReelTalk Movie Reviews

Bloodsport

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Broadway: The American Musical

A.J. Hakari @ ReelTalk Movie Reviews

The Cat and the Canary (1978)

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Cat People (1982)

A.J. Hakari @ Classic Movie Guide

Chosen Survivors

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

The Crowd

Tim Brayton @ Antagony & Ecstasy

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Classics and Other Films on DVD (May 5, 2014)

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Published on: May 5, 2014

Here are our latest reviews of films on DVD.

Reviews of Classic Films

4 (Chetyre)

Dennis Schwartz @ Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews

Ace in the Hole

Philip Concannon @ Mostly Film

The Age of the Medici

Dennis Schwartz @ Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews

Baby Face Nelson

Roderick Heath @ This Island Rod

  • Excerpt: An attempt by the late Mickey Rooney to redefine himself as a pugnaciously plebeian, gritty character actor, this is one of the brighter nuggets to be found in the silt of his mid-career.

The Beast of Hollow Mountain

A.J. Hakari @ Classic Movie Guide

Billy Rose’s Jumbo

A.J. Hakari @ Classic Movie Guide

The Candy Snatchers

Dennis Schwartz @ Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews

Christmas in July

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Crescendo

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Crocodile Dundee / Crocodile Dundee II

James Plath Plath @ Family Home Theater

  • Excerpt: My family loved the first film but only thought the second half of the sequel entertaining. The first half, it was as if the filmmakers couldn’t quite figure out what to do with Dundee.

D.O.A.

Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com

  • Excerpt: [VIDEO ESSAY] A high-concept movie before there was such a thing, “D.O.A.” foreshadowed the poisoning of (possibly) Yasser Arafat and (definitely) Alexander Litvinenko — via polonium-210 — by a half-century.

Destroy All Monsters: “Back to the Future” and The Power of Love

Matt Brown @ Twitch

Dracula: Prince of Darkness

A.J. Hakari @ Classic Movie Guide

Frankenstein Created Woman

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Goodbye Uncle Tom

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: This strange and audacious condemnation of American slavery, made by controversial Italian shockumentarians Jacopetti and Prosperi… is equal parts outrage and exploitation, with a side of absurdity.

Hot Water

Dennis Schwartz @ Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews

I Was A Teenage Werewolf

Dennis Schwartz @ Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews

The Mask of Dimitrios

A.J. Hakari @ Classic Movie Guide

The Neanderthal Man

A.J. Hakari @ Classic Movie Guide

Northfork

Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies

  • Excerpt: …displays the trappings of spirituality, but it doesn’t have a real spiritual message to convey.

Quentin Durward

Roderick Heath @ This Island Rod

  • Excerpt: Quentin Durward is a fun, loose adventure film, one that works well on something very close to a self-satirising level for star Robert Taylor and director Richard Thorpe.

The Ten Commandments

Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews

  • Excerpt: It presents its subject with such unrestrained grandiloquence that at times, the exhibition verges on pageantry. Nevertheless the drama is an unqualified success.

Think Fast, Mr. Moto

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Windjammer: The Voyage of the Christian Radich

A.J. Hakari @ CineSlice

Recent Home Video Releases

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