David Lean Directs Noel Coward (Criterion Collection)
In Which We Serve, This Happy Breed, Blithe Spirit, Brief Encounter
In this bunch I have only seen Brief Encounter and I loved it. It’s a film I would include in a recommended session alongside Before Sunset although Before Sunset is a superior film in my mind. As for the others, I am looking forward to giving them a watch and will be doing so shortly. I tried to find some time yesterday to begin watching This Happy Breed, but the clock was working against me.
I wouldn’t necessarily say this is a must buy, but it is without a doubt a must rent if only for the Jack Nicholson portion alone. To see cool guy Nicholson break down and start crying while talking about Corman is all I think I really need to say about this film to get you to watch it. If that doesn’t work, I guess I could tell you it also includes thoughts from Martin Scorsese, Bruce Dern, David Carradine, George Hickenlooper, Jonathan Demme, Ron Howard, Eli Roth, Peter Fonda, Paul W.S. Anderson, Pam Grier, Joe Dante, Peter Bogdanovich, John Sayles, William Shatner, Gale Anne Hurd, Jonathan Kaplan and Polly Pratt, all discussing the effect Corman had on them and the history of cinema as a whole. It’s a true eye-opener.
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
I love this film and I’m not afraid to say it in the least. I’ve seen in three times and I just received the Blu-ray and will likely watch it again very soon. I’m also interested in checking out the documentary on Max von Sydow that comes with it, which was apparently made by his son.
One big argument against Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close is that it is overly sentimental and in that people feel as if they have been manipulated. If I may say, it’s only sentimental because the subject matter is sentimental. You shouldn’t feel manipulated, don’t be scared, those are legit feelings and emotions you’re experiencing. The film is about how one boy deals with his emotions and attempts to overcome them and move on while remembering the father he lost on 9/11. It’s sad… because it’s sad, not because it’s manipulating you.
Casablanca (70th Anniversary Limited Collector’s Edition)
I have this on here only because everyone should own it. It’s a great movie and a true classic. That said, I’m not much of a fan of how Warner Home Video is treating this release. This set is too pricey and to look on Amazon and to see all previous editions gone outside of the previous Ultimate Edition, which is selling for nearly $100, is a sham. To see the previously released single editions are not currently available is just price gouging the audience. If you can find the single edition, do so, the transfer is great and the film is too.
The Bodyguard [Blu-ray]
This is a curiously timed release and don’t go thinking Warner rushed the release due to Whitney Houston’s death. I think I received a press release for this Blu-ray about two or three weeks before she died, which I guess in Warner’s case is fortunate, just too bad Houston’s death had to make this release that much more significant.
A Dangerous Method
Kevin is going to have a look at this Blu-ray soon enough as he’s planning on tackling it with a look at David Cronenberg’s commentary. I have no idea what he’s going to say, but in my opinion this just isn’t a title I would be looking to pick up. The film itself was a little too cold and dry for my taste, but perhaps Kevin will say something that will change my mind.
In the Land of Blood and Honey
Angelina Jolie makes her feature directorial debut and the subject matter is so harsh I just couldn’t bring myself to watch it. This film just looks so sad and depressing I don’t know why I would want to subject myself to that dreariness.
Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked
I do, however, wonder, which would be more dreary, Jolie’s In the Land of Blood and Honey or an Alvin and the Chipmunks release? Not that I plan on ever watching either, but if I were to explore one it would definitely be Jolie’s feature.
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