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.
Rough Cut Blog
It’s remarkable that it’s still possible to discover a previously unknown yet major film from the silent era, but the BFI’s new release of Anthony Asquith’s first feature, Shooting Stars (1928) is a revelation; a fresh, self-aware film about filmmaking and the intersection of real and imaginary lives.
Twilight Time have released two very different movies on Blu-ray: Ralph Nelson’s religious parable Lilies of the Field, which won Sidney Poitier the first ever best actor Oscar for a Black star, and Richard Fleischer’s bleak 10 Rillington Place, the true story of British serial killer John Reginald Christie, which features Richard Attenborough’s finest performance.
The 3rd volume of Shout! Factory’s Vincent Price Collection, anchored by William Whitney’s severely under-budgeted Master of the World (1961), seems more threadbare than the previous volumes, although there are still points of interest. Roger Corman’s Tower of London (1962) seems ripe for reevaluation, and set allows viewers to compare Gordon Hessler’s original cut of Cry of the Banshee (1970) with the producer’s cut, released theatrically. The high point is Price’s one-man TV show An Evening of Edgar Allan Poe (1970).
Criterion has released a stand-alone Blu-ray edition of Whit Stillman’s Barcelona (1994), the final part of his triptych about young Americans striving to define themselves as they navigate an uncertain world. A romantic comedy with troubling undertones, it deals with the mixture of naivety and arrogance which creates a problematic relationship between the U.S. and other parts of the world.