7 items from 2014
Directed by Roman Polanski
Roman Polanski revealed an exceptional eye for gripping visual design in his earliest films. In those works, like Knife in the Water, Cul-de-sac, Repulsion, Rosemary’s Baby and, somewhat later, The Tenant, most of this pictorial construction was derivative of themes, and subsequent depictions of, confinement, claustrophobic paranoia, and severely taut antagonism. In terms of visual and narrative scope, Chinatown opened things up somewhat, but it was with Tess, his 1979 adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s “Tess of the d’Urbervilles,” that Polanski significantly broadened his canvas to encompass the sweeping tale of the Victorian era loves and conflicts of this eponymous peasant girl.
Polanski speaks to this distinction during an interview in the newly released Criterion Collection Blu-ray/DVD of Tess. In discussing the film for the French TV program Cine regards, the director »
- Jeremy Carr
Although Hammer Films will always be associated with British horror, the studio did have stiff competition. Amicus specialised in the successful horror anthologies and Us counterparts American International Pictures established a permanent UK base in the mid sixties. Other smaller independents took their own bite from the cherry tree of horror with some success, the best known being Tigon Films.
Tigon has received some belated recognition in recent years. Andy Boot’s book on British horror Fragments of Fear devotes a chapter to the company while John Hamilton’s excellent book Beast in the Cellar covers the varied career of Tigon’s charismatic founder Tony Tenser.
Like Hammer’s Sir James Carreras, Tenser was one of the British Film Industry’s great entrepreneurs. Born in London to poor Lithuanian immigrants and a movie fan since childhood, he was an ambitious man with a natural talent for showmanship. Combining shrewd business »
Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: March 25, 2014
Price: DVD $27.95, Blu-ray $29.95
The film follows a mute Garment District seamstress played by the late model/actress/musician/screenwriter Zoë Lund (then known, at age 18, as Zoë Tamerlis ) who, after falling victim to multiple unspeakable rapes, unleashes a one-woman homicidal rampage against Gotham’s male population.
A grindhouse favorite that struck a chord with those who grooved on the vigilante aspect of the film in a then crime-ridden New York City, Ms. 45 quickly became a notorious cult favorite, an eye-opening study of a seamy, sticky, pre-Disney-fication Manhattan..
“Drafthouse Films, in conjunction with Cinedigm (Nasdaq: Cidm), will bring two of its recent theatrical success stories to Blu-ray and DVD in restored and remastered editions: the wildly ambitious and neglected sci-fi/horror epic The Visitor and Ms. 45, legendary director Abel Ferrara’s gritty, gore-filled New York revenge thriller. The films will arrive, respectively, on March 4 and on March 25, 2014, with SRPs of $29.95 for Blu-ray and $27.95 for DVD. They come packed with bonus material in both formats.
Incredibly ambitious but derided and largely neglected upon its initial release in 1979, The Visitor is an unforgettable assault on reality, a phantasmagoric sci-fi/horror/action hybrid. From writer-producer Ovidio G. Assonitis (Tentacles) and director/actor/body builder Michael J. Paradise (aka Giulio Paradisi – Fellini’s 8½),the film artfully fuses elements of some of »
- Jonathan James
The lovable loonies at Drafthouse Films are doing a great job of bringing some really obscure little titles to a new generation of viewers. Next up for them - the DVD and Blu-ray releases of The Visitor and Ms. 45. Read on for details.
From the Press Release
Drafthouse Films, in conjunction with Cinedigm (Nasdaq: Cidm), will bring two of its recent theatrical success stories to Blu-ray and DVD in restored and remastered editions: the wildly ambitious and neglected sci-fi/horror epic The Visitor and Ms. 45, legendary director Abel Ferrara's gritty, gore-filled New York revenge thriller. The films will arrive, respectively, on March 4 and on March 25, 2014, with SRPs of $29.95 for Blu-ray and $27.95 for DVD. They come packed with bonus material in both formats.
Incredibly ambitious but derided and largely neglected upon its initial release in 1979, The Visitor is an unforgettable assault on reality, a phantasmagoric sci-fi/horror/action hybrid. »
- Uncle Creepy
I arrived at Sundance early last night, a step ahead of an East Coast blizzard, to take the critic’s baton from my colleague Owen Gleiberman for the second half of the festival. The first words I heard when I arrived in Park City, Utah, were that there would be a top-secret screening Tuesday night of an eagerly anticipated film from a prominent director months before its scheduled release. The guessing games whipped into a full-on tizzy immediately, with the early odds-on favorite that it would be either Wes Anderson’s Grand Budapest Hotel or Bennett Miller’s Foxcatcher. But »
- Chris Nashawaty
Emails from judges in 2008 reveal allegations of misconduct by judge in original case, and could potentially pave way for Polanski's freedom
Emails disclosed to the New York Times have revealed allegations of misconduct by a judge in the 1977 trial of film director Roman Polanski, when he was accused of the statutory rape of 13-year-old Samantha Gailey.
Larry P Fidlar, currently a judge on the Los Angeles County Superior Court, said that if Polanski were to return to the States for a hearing, it could well be ruled in his favour thanks to the misconduct of Laurence A Rittenband, the judge in the original case. Rittenband is alleged to have discussed the case with journalists as it was ongoing, and told lawyers the angle he wanted them to take – this information was uncovered by Marina Zenovich's 2008 documentary Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired. »
- Ben Beaumont-Thomas
7 items from 2014
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