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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 12:34 pm 
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Louie Bluie

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Crumb director Terry Zwigoff’s first film is a true treat: a documentary about the obscure country blues musician and idiosyncratic visual artist Howard “Louie Bluie” Armstrong, member of the last known black string band in America. As beguiling a raconteur as he is a performer, Louie makes for a wildly entertaining movie subject, and Zwigoff honors him with an unsentimental but endlessly affectionate tribute. Full of infectious music and comedy, Louie Bluie is a humane evocation of the kind of pop-cultural marginalia that Zwigoff would continue to excavate in the coming years.

DIRECTOR-APPROVED SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES

- New, restored high-definition digital transfer, approved by director Terry Zwigoff
- Audio commentary featuring Zwigoff
- Outtakes and deleted scenes
- Illustrations by Howard Armstrong
- Stills gallery
- PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic Michael Sragow
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Crumb

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Terry Zwigoff’s landmark 1995 film is an intimate documentary portrait of underground artist Robert Crumb, whose unique drawing style and sexually and racially provocative subject matter have made him a household name in popular American art. Zwigoff candidly and colorfully delves into the details of Crumb’s incredible career, as well as his past, including his family of reclusive eccentrics, some of the most remarkable people you’ll ever see on-screen. At once a profound biographical portrait, a riotous examination of a man’s controversial art, and a devastating look at a troubled family, Crumb is a genuine American original.

DIRECTOR-APPROVED SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES

- New, restored high-definition digital transfer, approved by director Terry Zwigoff, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
- Two audio commentaries, one from 2010 with Zwigoff, and one from 2006, featuring Zwigoff and critic Roger Ebert
- Outtakes and deleted scenes
- Stills gallery
- PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Jonathan Rosenbaum
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Also available on Blu-ray
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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 12:42 pm 
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I had the privilege of seeing the Martin, Bogan and Armstrong band at a (very) long-ago University of Chicago folk festival. An amazing group.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 1:02 pm 
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Let me just be the first to say:

YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!

The Ebert and Zwigoff commentary is great, but to get another Zwigoff commentary on top of that is amazing. It's a shame Crumb himself didn't participate, but I had my doubts that he would anyway. I hope there are a lot of outtakes/deleted scenes pertaining to Charles Crumb, who is truly the heart of the documentary.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 1:14 pm 
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Way about time some old-time American string band music becomes available through Criterion...in fact, I can't think of any major DVD publisher that's released anything on old-timey music.

EDIT: In addition, this release would have been a great candidate for the inclusion of, at the least, some downloadable mp3s of African-American string band music. If any of you might be interested, I highly recommend Folks, He Sure Do Pull Some Bow! and Violin, Sing the Blues For Me. Both are fantastic compilations of original old-time African American string band 78s from back in the day. These are just the tip of the iceberg from anyone who catches the old-timey bug 'cause there's tons of other compilations from other companies such as Yazoo...both Anglo and African string band music as well as old-time country and Delta blues.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 3:25 pm 
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Louie Blouie sounds very intriguing. Might be a blind buy for me.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 3:33 pm 

Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2008 1:03 am
erm, kind of shocked crumb is an upper-tier priced disc.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 3:55 pm 
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A nice pair. Here's hoping Louie Bluie sells well enough that Criterion considers doing a Les Blank Eclipse set - so many great music films there that need to be better known.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 5:53 pm 
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Location: Portland, OR
Zedz, agreed! Reading the description for Louie Blouie immediately reminded me of The Blues According to Lightnin' Hopkins. Blank's short docs are available on his expensive (and I think self-produced) DVDs, and I'd buy a big set of all of them in a heartbeat (I've only seen a few, but my favorite is Always for Pleasure).


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 6:08 pm 
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Wow, they got Zwigoff on two commentaries. I thought he hated them.

skeets kelly wrote:
erm, kind of shocked crumb is an upper-tier priced disc.

But Louie is $25 msrp!


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 6:24 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2005 9:20 pm
Crumb doesn't strike me as being a particularly good value. It's pretty much the same package as the Sony disc which you can get for 8-10 bucks with an extra commentary track . (It seems likely that there will be lots of overlap between the two tracks as well.)

I don't see why they weren't able to include the OOP BBC doc on Crumb that they themselves released on Home Vision. (At the very least...)


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 6:35 pm 
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ianungstad wrote:
Crumb doesn't strike me as being a particularly good value. It's pretty much the same package as the Sony disc which you can get for 8-10 bucks with an extra commentary track . (It seems likely that there will be lots of overlap between the two tracks as well.)

I don't see why they weren't able to include the OOP BBC doc on Crumb that they themselves released on Home Vision. (At the very least...)

I'm a little surprised at that too. I'm actually surprised they didn't just include Louie Bluie as a supplement to Crumb.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 6:42 pm 
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Jeff wrote:
ianungstad wrote:
Crumb doesn't strike me as being a particularly good value. It's pretty much the same package as the Sony disc which you can get for 8-10 bucks with an extra commentary track . (It seems likely that there will be lots of overlap between the two tracks as well.)

I don't see why they weren't able to include the OOP BBC doc on Crumb that they themselves released on Home Vision. (At the very least...)

I'm a little surprised at that too. I'm actually surprised they didn't just include Louie Bluie as a supplement to Crumb.


I thought that including Louie Bluie was the incentive Criterion would put on the release to differentiate it from the excellent Sony release.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 6:50 pm 
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Jean-Luc Garbo wrote:
Wow, they got Zwigoff on two commentaries. I thought he hated them.

skeets kelly wrote:
erm, kind of shocked crumb is an upper-tier priced disc.

But Louie is $25 msrp!

but should have been an extra on a 2 disc Crumb. I'm ecstatic to see it accompanying Crumb, but this is kind of lame overall imo.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 6:53 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2005 9:20 pm
It's a great documentary and I'm quite pleased with the cover...but I just hate the feeling that if I buy this, it's only because it has that wacky-C in the corner. Oh well, maybe they'll add a few features before release date. If they are going to tackle films that have already been released in special editions, the Criterion should be a significant improvement over the prior release. I think they did a great job with Stagecoach and the two Wim Wenders releases...but this is a bit of a letdown.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 7:11 pm 
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If the transfer is a noticeable improvement over the '06 release, I will probably triple-dip -- especially if the Criterion sales at B&N continue. It's one of my favorite documentaries (however long a list that might be) and certainly one of the most re-watchable.


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 7:34 pm 
Dot Com Dom
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I guess if Criterion was gonna rescue a Zwigoff, I'd rather it be Ghost World, which could stand some substantial extras


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 7:36 pm 
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I won't double-dip until those deleted scenes indicate whether or not it's worth it. That BBC doc would have been a great extra as Zwigoff mentions it on the commentary. Would some previous HVE contract have barred its inclusion here?


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 10:21 pm 
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domino harvey wrote:
I guess if Criterion was gonna rescue a Zwigoff, I'd rather it be Ghost World, which could stand some substantial extras



agreed 100%. I guess I just don't understand the point of the Crumb release with only a new Zwigoff commentary, when it's porting over the already extant zwigoff/ebert commentary. i don't have much use for commentaries to start with, let alone multiples by the same person. seems an awful stretch to get it to the upper tier when everything else is already been available on an SE for 1/4 the price.


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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 9:55 am 
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It's only worth buying it on blu-ray during a B&N sale (i still would feel like a completist). Crumb and Louie Bluie should be sold as a set, period.


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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 11:04 am 
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If the Mishima film could get separated from Schrader's, this shouldn't be a shocker


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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 11:18 am 
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Or Bergman Island... Oh wait.


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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 11:47 am 
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domino harvey wrote:
If the Mishima film could get separated from Schrader's, this shouldn't be a shocker

It's all a bit arbitrary though. Other early, short, ultra-low-budget efforts by Criterion directors have shown up as supplements (Permanent Vacation on Stranger Than Paradise, It's Impossible to Learn to Plow by Reading Books on Slacker, and Shall We Go to Your or My Place or Each Go Home Alone? on My Life as a Dog). Louie Bluie certainly seems to be a fit in that category, and it would add some much-needed additional value to the Crumb disc, distinguishing it from the Sony.


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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 11:55 am 
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You're right, but I am also loling at the idea of a separate release of Permanent Vacation. I can just picture the meeting at Criterion: "Hey, let's release something more unmarketable than Border Radio!"


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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 1:40 pm 

Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2007 5:31 am
Don't get me wrong, I adore "Crumb", but I was really hoping that the clue had pointed towards "Fritz the Cat". I really hope Criterion licenses "Coonskin" from Paramount.


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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 2:40 pm 

Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 10:55 pm
beamish13 wrote:
Don't get me wrong, I adore "Crumb", but I was really hoping that the clue had pointed towards "Fritz the Cat". I really hope Criterion licenses "Coonskin" from Paramount.


I never expected "Fritz the Cat" as a possible release (let's be honest, Criterion hates animation only slightly less than they do Rivette). But part of me had hoped for a supplement featuring Crumb and Ralph Bakshi sitting down and hashing out their different interpretations of the character.

-BJ


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