AKA Le Voyage Du Ballon Rouge/Le Ballon Rouge. DVD label Network continues to build on its excellent repertoire of TV releases with its growing roster of film DVDs. They have now released The Red Ballon (1954) a 34 film minute with minimal dialogue, and an almost balletic story of a boy and his balloon meandering through the streets and rooftops of a changing Paris. Absolutely beautifully photographed it was also the winner of that years Oscar for best screenplay (even though it was only classed as a short film).
Histoire Du Cinema
Jean-Luc Godard 's place in cinematic history is already assured with a long list of stunning and challenging movies such as Weekend, Made In USA and Breathless to name but 3, but his 8 episode series of histories of the cinema may well be his crowning glory. Made over a period of 10 years, this series is a truly mammoth critical meditation on 20th century cinema, its glory and failings and taking in so much more. All done is a Godard stylee it is a truly remarkable piece of work.
3. Bullet Boy
This 2005 film about the mean streets of London from is even more relevant given the escalation in the media profile of knife crime in the capital in the last year, and so this fine film is given a timely re-release. The story expands on themes of loyalty, kinship, courage, and escapism against the tough realities of surviving in a pressure cooker urban environment where doing the right thing is rarely a straight forward judgment call.
The best of the rest of other DVD releases 22nd September 2008
The Satyajit Ray Collection (Volume 2)
A second collection of films from the legendary director. Include within these three films (Kapurush, Mahapurush and a Joi Baba Felunath) are
some of his very best work in an astonishing career.
Under The Volcano
One of Albert Finney's finest performances in John Huston's 1984 tale of
a day in the life of Geoffrey Firmin, the curmbling hopelessly alcoholic ex-British consul in Mexico.
Alan Parker's dark and devilish noir
adaptation of William Hjortsberg's Faustian detective novel 'Falling Angel'. Mickey Rourke stars (in every sense) as private eye Harry Angel, hired by a mysterious, client Louis Cyphre (De Niro) to track down a missing singer who is dabbling in in the occult.
Makoto Tezuka's 2004 grusome crime thriller set in Tokyo about an aspiring model who is witness to a horrific (truly horrific) murder.
Flashbacks Of A Fool
This film should have been massive. Starring Daniel Craig as a faded film star spiraling out of control who returns to England to confront his past. Great cast includes
Keeley Hawes, Emilia Fox and Olivia Williams.
Hugely enjoyable feel good flick from John Sayles. Set in the 1950s in the backwaters of Alabama, the owner of the 'Honeydripper Lounge' faces ruin if he can't lure more customers away from his rivals. Which slow hand can ne his savior.
Super British noir thriller that slipped out almost unnoticed. Strange mix cast includes
stars Simon Phillips, Daniel Roberts Rule Lenska, Mike Reid and Eric Cantona.
Silly but somehow satisfying sci-fi stuff from 1976. Commentaries and other extras added in this new release.
Aka Valehtelija, Mika Kaurismaki writes and stars in this excellent piece from Finland from 1981, about a
talkative drifter trying to borrow money from friends and strangers. Top stuff
Part of the Masters of Cinema. Maurice Pialat's 1985 superior druggy crime thriller starring a wonderfully cast
A film exploring the life of Mark Rothko, one of the leading American artists on the 50s and 60s. In particular focusing on his demanding strive for perfection in the galleries wishing to display his large pieces.
Zombie And The Ghost Train
Zombie ja Kummitusjuna. Our second selection this month of
Mika Kaurismaki's work. This time for 1991, a story of an alcoholic bass player who gets thrown out of the army and tries to get himself together by playing in a band he has been roadying for.
The best of the Blu-Ray / HD DVD releases 22nd September 2008
Army Of Darkness - Evil Dead 3
Unassuming store clerk Ash is time-warped into England's Dark Ages, where he must find the Necronomicon, a compendium of the black arts, before he can return home.
Evil Dead 2
Comedy Horror / Horror Comedy - this one tips over into comedy for the most part. Sam Raimi's hugely entertaining follow up to the original Evil Dead is hugely entertaining.
Gone Baby Gone
Based on the novel by Dennis Lehane, the directorial debut of actor Ben Affleck, features a strong cast including Ed Harris and Morgan Freeman, in a detective story that centres on the disappearance of a young girl in a working class Boston neighborhood.
The best of the TV releases (all formats) 22nd September 2008
From the makers of Meerkat Manor comes this equally charming "docu-soap", following the amazing real life and death exploits of the african meerkats.
Saxondale (Series 2)
By Steve Coogan. Charts the exploits of ex-roadie, turned certificated pest controller Tommy Saxondale. A perfect stop gap until we get to see the long promised Alan Partridge movie.
Sex And The City Series 1-6
Ladies love this apparently, though personally we don't know what all the fuss is about.
Thin week for TV releases. Dallas Series 9 and The Dukes Of Hazzard Series 7 are also released, but so what?