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3 items from 2012

Blu-ray, DVD Release: The Ballad of Narayama

19 November 2012 1:21 PM, PST | Disc Dish | See recent Disc Dish news »

Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: Feb. 5, 2013

Price: DVD $19.95, Blu-ray $29.95

Studio: Criterion

Kinuyo Tanaka wishes happiness for her son in The Ballad of Narayama.

The 1958 film drama The Ballad of Narayama is a haunting, kabuki-inflected version of a Japanese folk legend directed by Keisuke Kinoshita (Twenty-four Eyes).

The tale is set in a remote mountain village, where food is scarce and tradition dictates that citizens who have reached their seventieth year must be carried to the summit of Mount Narayama and left there to die. The sacrificial elder at the center of the tale is Orin (Ugetsu’s Kinuyo Tanaka), a dignified and dutiful woman who spends her dwindling days securing the happiness of her loyal widowed son with a respectable new wife.

Filmed almost entirely on cunningly designed studio sets, in vivid color and widescreen, The Ballad of Narayama is a stylish and vividly formal work by the dynamic Knoshita, one »

- Laurence

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This week's new film events

26 October 2012 4:04 PM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Halloween film specials

All Hallows' Eve isn't just boom time for fancy-dress merchants and pumpkin growers; more than ever, Halloween means horror and you're spoiled for choice this year. So what will it be? Trick, treat, or horrifically gory splatterfest? Surgical horror seems to be where it's at right now. Many of the seasonal horror festivals around the country feature previews of Excision (in which an unstable teen tests out her self-taught surgical skills) and American Mary (medical student finds gory sideline on the fetish circuit). Ben "Kill List" Wheatley's latest, Sightseers is also doing the rounds and is a very British psycho-camping trip.

Wales's well-stocked national horror festival, Abertoir (Aberystwyth Arts Centre, 6-11 Nov) has special guests Steven "Mum And Dad" Sheil, introducing his new Indonesia-set horror, and British giallo queen Catriona MacColl, with Lucio Fulci's The Beyond. Sheffield's Celluloid Screams (Showroom, Sat & Sun), meanwhile, introduces rising Brazilian gore merchant Dennison Ramalho. »

- Steve Rose

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‘Argo’ to open the 2012 Leeds International Film Festival

12 October 2012 8:01 AM, PDT | Blogomatic3000 | See recent Blogomatic3000 news »

Ben Affleck’s new thriller Argo has been announced as the Opening Gala film of this year’s Leeds International Film Festival. The widely-acclaimed Argo, based on the remarkable true story of a CIA expert posing as a fake film producer in order to infiltrate Iran at the time of the hostage crisis in 1979 and rescue a group of stranded Americans, will open the annual festival at Leeds Town Hall on Thursday 1 November. Argo will be released in the UK by Warner Bros on Wednesday 7 November.

Now in its 26th year, the biggest film festival in England to be held outside London runs until Sunday 18 November and will present 167 feature films and special programmes in 257 screenings and events. The full programme, available to view at, is presented in five distinct sections: Official Selection, Retrospectives, Fanomenon, Cinema Versa, and Short Film City.

Amour closes the Official Selection

Opening this year with Argo, »

- Phil

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