Tuesday, August 7, 2007

DVD releases for August 7

How is it that out of 459 new releases on DVD, I can only find one that I am excited about, one that might be a worthy purchase and then one that I'm just sort of interested in? Here's an overview of what is encompassed in those 400+ releases: truck load of Elvis movies (if that is your bag, I will be no help), lots of triple feature repackaging (for example, you can have Planes, Trains and Automobiles, Summer Rental, and Foul Play all on one DVD), TV shows, TV shows, TV shows, and finally just a lot of crud (for example Mustang Sally's Horror House, John Deere Action, Bellydance Underworld, NFL History of the Kansas City Chiefs, The Pursuit of Excellence: Ferrets - links provided to prove I'm not lying.) Oh, yeah, and there are some Blu-ray re-issues. (Can I just say for the record that I hope the Blu-ray format loses out because I hate that name.) Enough of the whining; who needs more than three recommendations anyway? Here they are:

Private Fears in Public Places (2006) directed by Alain Resnais
Well, so much for holding out for this one in the theaters. Or maybe the smart people over at the Parkway will screen this. Alain Resnais (Hiroshima, mon amour, Last Year at Marienbad) is in his eighties and still-a-makin' the films. I have heard good (but not great) things about this film. Based on a play by Alan Ayckbourn, Private Fears follows a group of individuals looking for love, or someone to fill the void of loneliness. Some people call this a comedy, some a drama, and others a romantic version of the two. The trailer looks beautiful. Considering all the falling snow in the film, it is a perfect rent for these steamy days. I actually haven't seen that many of Resnais' films, and while I could blame that on the lack of screen time he gets here in the US, there are many of his films on DVD that I have not seen. I want to make a point of checking this out.

Luis Buñuel Boxset: Gran Casino (1947) and The Young One (1960)
The arrival of two Buñuel films that were previously unavailable in the US is something to celebrate. Gran Casino was his first film he made ofter moving to Mexico, and it was overall a failure, both critically and financially. The fifty cent plot summery goes like this: a worker assumes the business of an oil well after the owner goes missing; sister of the missing owner comes in to find out what really happened. The Young One is held in much higher regard, dealing with racism, innocence and the spoils of society. A black jazz musician, escaping a wrongful rape charge, lands on an island with only two other inhabitants. It doesn't sound like things turn out very well. Details about the DVD are scant, but it looks like special features are nil to minimal.

Disturbia (2007) directed by D.J. Caruso
"Rear Window for the Nickolodeon set." That's funny. Nonetheless this movie seems interesting.

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