Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Home Movies - February 2011

Home Movies for February is up at In Review Online.

Right when I was wrapping up February's DVD/Blu-ray feature for In Review Online, an article appeared in the New York Times regarding the slow but inevitable transition away from DVDs to electronic delivery by either streaming or on-demand. "It's the Delivery, Stupid: Goodbye, DVD. Hello Future." outlines trends and potentials that no doubt greatly effect Dave Kehr, the Times DVD columnist. But I'm not giving up on DVDs yet. They still represent my best opportunity to see films not released in Minneapolis or not released in the US. And while the theaters still playing rep titles are certainly fighting the good fight (and, yes, I work at one), their offerings barely scratch the surface of the amazing restorations going on for your personal DVD and Blu-ray perusal. Case in point with a cross-section of recent purchases: Confessions (Japan, 2010, Tetsuya Nakashima, available on Blu-ray from Hong Kong), At the End of Daybreak (Malaysia, 2009, Ho Yuhang, available on DVD in Hong Kong), Confessions of a Dog (Japan, 2006, Gen Takahashi, banned in Japan and now available on DVD in the UK), La Signora Senza Camelie (Italy, 1953, Michelangelo Antonioni, available on Blu-ray from the UK). Eventually some of these titles will be available in the US, but some won't. And in the case of US releases, there are of course mounds of things unavailable streaming or on-demand or download.

All things considered, what I spend on DVDs and Blu-rays is not that much more than what I would spend on an adequate internet connection (if I was willing to give Comcast my money) and cable in order to access the so-called future, but the future still doesn't include the titles listed above. Nor does the future include many of the films outlined by Jordan Cronk and I in Home Movies.

For my money, DVDs, Blu-rays and my local video store still reign supreme.

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