Recent viewing ranges from classic noir to mediocre ’80s thriller, from low budget horror to a documentary about one of the great craftsmen of fantasy film.
Nazis and vampires have been popular subjects for exploitation for decades in a range of genres from the Gothic to epic SF and paranoid b-movie thriller.
In The Road Trilogy, one of their finest releases in some time, Criterion showcase three key early works by Wim Wenders, one of the finest filmmakers of the New German Cinema.
Recent viewing ranges from smart B-movie horror to magic realist-inflected neo-realism, with excellent disks from Blue Underground, Shout! Factory and Arrow Video.
Criterion’s release of a key but little-known feature by Jean Renoir, the conceptually and stylistically sophisticated La Chienne, is essential viewing.
A classic romantic comedy about death gets an impressive new release on Blu-ray from Criterion. Alexander Hall’s Here Comes Mr. Jordan (1941) features a witty script and an impressive cast headed by Robert Montgomery, Claude Rains and Evelyn Keyes in the story of a good-natured boxer snatched prematurely by one of Death’s messengers and returned to Earth in the body of a crooked businessman.
Two recent disks present transgressive sexuality from very different perspectives: Christian Marquand’s Candy is a glossy big budget production packed with star power, while Curt McDowell’s Thundercrack! is a scrappy underground epic.
After a two year hiatus, the BFI has revived the Flipside series with three notable releases: Val Guest’s musical satire Expresso Bongo, Edmond T. Greville’s juvenile delinquent exploitation movie Beat Girl, and Jose Ramon Larraz’s “lost” horror film Symptoms.
Another eclectic selection from my recent viewing, from an old fondly remembered BBC sci-fi series to an unsettling French psychological thriller, from a nasty John Frankenheimer thriller to a pair of atypical Rossellini features striving to break out of the confines of neorealism.
Criterion releases Nicholas Ray’s In a Lonely Place (1950) in a superb Blu-ray edition with plentiful special features to illuminate this bleak masterpiece about masculine insecurity and the roots of violence.