Studio Canal/Kinowelt/Optimum

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Awesome Welles
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#76 Post by Awesome Welles » Thu May 17, 2007 6:37 am

Did anyone else miss this , I had no idea they were releasing this, I hope it drops in price soon, there has been so much released lately I am so poor! Not the best extras in the world so I won't be surprised if it does drop.

Are there any reviews up?

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Lino
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#77 Post by Lino » Mon May 28, 2007 9:09 am

Lots of goodies coming our way! From Zeta Minor:
The line-up for the Screen Icons - Dirk Bogarde set has finally been announced: it will contain The Blue Lamp, The Sleeping Tiger, The Servant, Accident, Victim, The Spanish Gardener and Hunted.

Optimum will release David Lynch's Inland Empire as a two-disc set on August the 20th. Bonus features will include (TBC) David Lynch Masterclass; David Lynch interview at the Cartier Foundation; Guardian / NFT interview with David Lynch and Mark Kermode; Film 2007 Interview with David Lynch; and an interview with sound mixer Dean Hurley.

Optimum's schedule:

9th July - Visconti's Senso; Antonioni's L'Eclisse; The Conquest of Everest; Gerad Depardieu in Buffet Froid, Helas Pour Moi and Camille Claudel; The Harold Lloyd Collection

23rd July - Silent Tongue; The Jean-Luc Godard Collection - Volume 2 (Pierrot Le Fou, Une Femme Est Une Femme, La Chinoise, Le Petit Soldat and Detective); Screen Icons - James Mason; Screen Icons - Dirk Bogarde; The Minus Man

6th August - Unknown; The Caiman; Aprile; Jacques Becker's Casque D'Or, Le Trou and Touchez Pas Au Grisbi

20th August - Inland Empire; Western Classics Deadly Companions (Peckinpah), Canyon Passage (Tourneur), Seminole (Boetticher) and The True Story of Jesse James (Ray); The All Blacks rugby documentary

3rd September - This Is England; Sam Fuller's House of Bamboo, Fixed Bayonets and Hell and High Water

19th September - Patrice Leconte's My Best Friend; French Classics Les Bronzes and Romuald et Juliette; a Brotherhood of the Wolf Special Edition; Comic Icons - Alastair Sim; Comic Icons - Will Hay;

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MichaelB
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#78 Post by MichaelB » Mon May 28, 2007 9:16 am

Lino wrote:Comic Icons - Alastair Sim
Let's hope this has some real rarities, as opposed to repackagings of Hue and Cry or the first two St Trinian's films.

One of the most pleasurable research jobs I've ever had involved watching as much of Sim's back catalogue as I could get my hands on for this Sight & Sound eulogy, and most of the titles I mention still aren't available - not even total classics like The Happiest Days of Your Life.

If that isn't in the package at the very least, Optimum have dropped the ball badly - not least because they definitely own the rights.

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Lino
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#79 Post by Lino » Mon May 28, 2007 9:22 am

From here:
Contains: The Green Man, Folly To Be Wise, Geordie, Left, Right and Centre and Laughter in Paradise

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ellipsis7
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#80 Post by ellipsis7 » Mon May 28, 2007 9:23 am

The big news is surely the late announced edition of Visconti's SENSO...

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#81 Post by MichaelB » Mon May 28, 2007 9:28 am

Lino wrote:Contains: The Green Man, Folly To Be Wise, Geordie, Left, Right and Centre and Laughter in Paradise
Hmm. Not too bad, but I'd personally have swapped The Happiest Days of Your Life for the already-available The Green Man.

Still, I shouldn't complain too much, as this is a definite step in the right direction.

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Lino
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#82 Post by Lino » Mon May 28, 2007 9:30 am

Maybe a second volume is on the way, who knows.

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#83 Post by colinr0380 » Mon May 28, 2007 10:02 am

MichaelB wrote:most of the titles I mention still aren't available - not even total classics like The Happiest Days of Your Life.

If that isn't in the package at the very least, Optimum have dropped the ball badly - not least because they definitely own the rights.
I agree. Perhaps it is being saved for a big St Trinian's boxset - wasn't Happiest Days Of Your Life the inspiration for the later five films? Does Optimum have the rights to them as well?

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#84 Post by MichaelB » Mon May 28, 2007 10:13 am

colinr0380 wrote:Perhaps it is being saved for a big St Trinian's boxset - wasn't Happiest Days Of Your Life the inspiration for the later five films? Does Optimum have the rights to them?
There's already been a St Trinian's boxset, containing the first four films. I suppose there's scope for a more extensive one including the reputedly unwatchable Wildcats of St Trinian's (belatedly made in 1980, fifteen years after the fourth film), but there's no formal connection between Happiest Days and the St Trinian's cycle apart from the involvement of Sim and the writer/director tesm of Frank Launder and Sidney Gilliat. Plus the fact that its huge box office success made them look for another exploitable school property.

One good thing about the Optimum box is that it also gets more Launder and Gilliat films into circulation - off the top of my head, I think all these films are their work (though Robert Day is the credited director, they wrote and produced The Green Man).

UPDATE: Laughter in Paris is the exception, directed by Mario Zampi. But it's also one of the funniest films in the collection, so that's hardly a complaint - Sim's body language when he has to shoplift some jewellery in order to fulfil the terms of a will is truly priceless.

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#85 Post by Scharphedin2 » Mon May 28, 2007 10:31 am

ellipsis7 wrote:The big news is surely the late announced edition of Visconti's SENSO...
Amen!!

Although a shame that it is not MoC or Criterion making this announcement. This not meant to be a slur on Optimum, who is doing a great job at making many, many films available to the English-speaking world, but simply that this is one particular film that I would have thought to have looked just gorgeous dressed up in MoC's careful and beautifully crafed cover art and with a nice exhaustive book(let) to go along. Maybe there is still hope for Criterion down the road (?) In any event, wonderful to finally be able to see this seminal Visconti film.

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#86 Post by tryavna » Mon May 28, 2007 12:18 pm

MichaelB wrote:(though Robert Day is the credited director, they wrote and produced The Green Man).
Wasn't Basil Dearden involved in The Green Man's production in some way or another? I love this film and don't doubt that Launder & Gilliat are its true auteurs, but Dearden was no slouch as a director/producer. So I'm just curious what sort of input he had.

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#87 Post by MichaelB » Mon May 28, 2007 12:53 pm

tryavna wrote:Wasn't Basil Dearden involved in The Green Man's production in some way or another? I love this film and don't doubt that Launder & Gilliat are its true auteurs, but Dearden was no slouch as a director/producer. So I'm just curious what sort of input he had.
I haven't done much research into this, but my understanding is that Dearden provided some uncredited directorial assistance to Robert Day, whose debut it was. Launder and Gilliat themselves seem to have had a less hands-on role than usual - possibly because it was adapted from a play of theirs, rather than an original screen creation.

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#88 Post by Wittsdream » Tue May 29, 2007 10:55 am

ellipsis7 wrote:The big news is surely the late announced edition of Visconti's SENSO...
I would bet the farm that the same thing that happened with Spirit of the Beehive is going to happen to Senso, aka, Optimum will precede a bells and whistles Criterion edition not more than a year later.

I've waited for this great, great film to be released onto a nice video format for over 20 years, and I'll wager that this time next year, I'll be owning 2 copies of it from 2 different labels.

Not that I'm complaining, of course!

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#89 Post by ellipsis7 » Tue May 29, 2007 11:00 am

I would bet the farm that the same thing that happened with Spirit of the Beehive is going to happen to Senso, aka, Optimum will precede a bells and whistles Criterion edition not more than a year later.
What has changed since BEEHIVE is that Optimum has been taken over by Studio Canal in R2 UK, and Studio Canal have also made a blanket licensing deal for US R1 with Lionsgate, so product that previously might have been heading towards Criterion, could now be Lionsgate bound...

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#90 Post by Narshty » Tue May 29, 2007 11:28 am

The Tales of Hoffmann is also coming out on September 3rd, says the nice customer services lady at Optimum.

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#91 Post by foggy eyes » Tue Jun 05, 2007 10:29 am

Optimum keep 'em coming:

From DVD Times:
Senso - £17.99 - Venice. 1866. After a night walking the empty streets of the ancient city together, a countess (Alida Valli, The Third Man) falls in love with an Austrian officer (Farley Granger, Strangers on A Train) and becomes his mistress. War breaks out and separates them until she eventually finds him again in the throes of battle against the Italians. Betraying both her principles and her cause, she tries to reform him with cruel and tragic consequences for them both…

Directed by Italian legend Luchino Visconti, Senso makes its UK DVD debut, remastered and presented in 1.33:1 Full Frame with Italian Mono and English subtitles. There are no listed extras.
As previously mentioned, also on the cards are three Beckers (£17.99 each), three Fullers and four Western Classics(barebones, £12.99 each).

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#92 Post by Gropius » Tue Jun 05, 2007 11:10 am

Also, Godard's Hélas pour moi, curiously popping up in a Depardieu set, suggesting that Optimum has other later Godard up its sleeve.

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#93 Post by justeleblanc » Tue Jun 05, 2007 1:19 pm

Gropius wrote:Also, Godard's Hélas pour moi, curiously popping up in a Depardieu set, suggesting that Optimum has other later Godard up its sleeve.
They have:

Detective
Passion
Helas pour moi
Prenom: Carmen

and possibly Nouvelle Vague

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#94 Post by Don Lope de Aguirre » Tue Jun 05, 2007 6:23 pm

Any thoughts on Gainsbourg's 'Je t'aime pas non plus'?

It sounds rather risqué...

:oops:

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#95 Post by Oedipax » Tue Jun 05, 2007 6:46 pm

That's kind of hilarious that they're marketing Helas pour moi as part of a Depardieu set (mercifully available separately), considering he walked off the picture. I'm actually glad they stretched in this instance, though, because it's another late Godard on DVD!

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Lino
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#96 Post by Lino » Tue Jun 05, 2007 7:36 pm

Don Lope de Aguirre wrote:Any thoughts on Gainsbourg's 'Je t'aime pas non plus'?

It sounds rather risqué.
I have it for the longest time on a french SE DVD. The movie has been described as a sort of grade-A underground classic or something (i.e., a movie made with little to no money but one that succeeds to come out a winner on all fronts).

A gay classic of sorts, too. And let's not forget that if features Gainsbourg's timeless song all throughout the movie, which really helps too! ;)

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#97 Post by ellipsis7 » Wed Jun 06, 2007 5:58 am

Just a quick run down through the virtues and drawbacks of the Optimum/Studio Canal R2 Jean Renoir 7 disc UK box...

GRAND ILLUSION - fixed white subs, 2 Renoir shorts, Vincendeau intro, Renoir intro (same as single Optimum disc)

LA BETE HUMAINE - removable white subs, trailer (port in of Studio Canal disc)

ELENA ET LES HOMMES - grainy print with scratches and sparkles, nasty colour, fixed large yellow subs (where did this come from?)

LA MARSEILLAISE - removable white subs, port in of beautifully restored French print (port in of Studio Canal disc)

LE DEJEUNER SUR l'HERBE - removable white subs, anamorphic, french docu xtra (port in of Studio Canal disc)

LE TESTAMENT DU DOCTEUR CORDELIER - removable white subs, trailer (port in of Studio Canal disc)

LE CAPORAL EPINGLE - removable white subs, anamorphic, french docu xtra (port in of Studio Canal disc)

Conclusion - this makes a nice complementary set to the CC discs... In other words stick with Criterion for LA BETE HUMAINE, GRAND ILLUSION and STAGE & SPECTACLE BOX (including ELENA AND HER MEN)...

The Optimum box presents decent copies of LA MARSEILLAISE, DEJEUNER SUR l'HERBE, LE TESTAMENT DE DOCTEUR CORDELIER and LE CAPORAL EPINGLE with nice removable Eng subs added to the excellent French Studio Canal editions...

Bin the Optimum ELENA, keep the Optimum GRAND ILLUSION for the shorts & Renoir intro (on CC disc too) and have LA BETE HUMAINE as a spare copy!....

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#98 Post by evillights » Wed Jun 06, 2007 9:28 pm

Don Lope de Aguirre wrote:Any thoughts on Gainsbourg's 'Je t'aime pas non plus'?

It sounds rather risqué
It's nearly a masterpiece. Gainsbourg was a first-rate filmmaker. The only feature of his I haven't seen is 'Stan the Flasher,' his final one, although it is available on disc in France, in what kind of quality I'm not sure. A double-disc double-feature also exists (in a terribly designed package) which contains (without subtitles) his second and third films, 'Equateur' and 'Charlotte for ever.' As good as 'Je t'aime moi non plus' and 'Equateur' are, 'Charlotte' is *the one*.

From a 2001 interview with Godard in Libération, around the release of 'Eloge de l'amour,' conducted by Michèle Halberstadt:
==

Michèle Halberstadt: I've always seen a parallel between you and Serge
Gainsbourg.

Jean-Luc Godard: Thank you. I'm very fond of 'Charlotte for ever.' I was thinking of the duality between the work and the person.

Michèle Halberstadt: We admired the musician but had trouble with the public persona. With you it's the opposite. We respect the man more than we look at the work.

Jean-Luc Godard: The paths have moved apart. I've remained a memorialist of this profession in all its qualities. I've always liked every aspect of cinema. This world of film, which is the world in miniature. Films come into being at a certain moment, they bloom, they live, grow old, die, all within a brief period of time.
==

Small piece I wrote about the film earlier in the year:

The third of Gainsbourg's four features sees the auteur continue his application of a workhorse rigor to all aspects of mise-en-scène. Torqued camera movements anticipate post-Damnation Béla Tarr in their ability to Rubik'ize three-dimensional space, while careful lighting (achieved by way of Willy Kurant) assists in consideration of the seven- or eight-room set — a stand-in for chez Serge — as a shadow-zone of personal tragedy and lapse in self-belief. With regard to the scenario: here I have only the vaguest understanding (no subtitles; my middling ear for spoken French). I know that Serge appears in the role of a quasi-alter-ego named "Stan" (SG's final feature is Stan the Flasher), a successful artist, a widower, a semi-functioning alcoholic; and that Serge's daughter Charlotte plays Stan's own early-teen giddy fille, flanked by cocktease schoolmates of the genus Hughes-Deutch. Stan and Charlotte share a rapport induced by deep mutual affection, a sense of the tragic, and an undertone of incest; Stan carries out (real or imagined) flings with one of Charlotte's friends; Charlotte beats her rival nearly to death on the Hoover'd parlor floor. So those details are clear, fine — but why Serge's performance here never became the stuff of canons remains rather murky to me. Suffice it to say that in Charlotte for ever, Gainsbourg-par-Gainsbourg is on par with the best of Montgomery Clift. (Probably not a good thing for some of the ciné-vieux, but a great thing for me, who admires Terminal Station above all other De Sicas. Although I suppose Clift is the Method-ist that MacMahonists allow themselves to like...) "Stan" is a role Pacino would have spent six months "crafting," but it's a performance which Gainsbourg pulls straight from his gut. Literally so, too, since one of the picture's final sequences finds him in single-shot medium-close-up as he repeatedly plunges a leather-clad fist past the barrier of his own lips to gag up a gallon of very actual, glaucous, puke. It's an arresting scene which maybe climaxes Gainsbourg's cinematic investigations of (here's that word again) the barrier of the body or, more accurately, the body as barrier and bûcher, pyre. Of course, he's plumbed this notion through the entire body of his work — recall the lines in "Premiers symptômes" off L'Homme à tête de chou that go: "Then, dragging my sneakers, / I would lock myself up in the water-closets / And there throw up my alcohol and my loathing... / I'd emerge, staggering, / And the little children would laugh at my cauliflower ears — / I had acquired, bit by bit, the head of a boxer" (my translation).

Like much of Godard in the '80s, Charlotte for ever is a transgressive film in the noblest sense; like much of Godard in the '60s, there's even a questionnaire scene, in which Serge/Stan helps Charlotte out with some homework catechism by supplying a stream of (truly) improvised answers that makes her shake with laughter. But keep in mind: if Serge was Jean-Luc's only equal in the art of the riposte, he was also up there with Miéville in exalting the tearful reconciliation. I'm speaking of the glorious final scene, when the walls between real-life and movie-making definitively collapse from the force of Serge's sobs, and he unleashes his camera toward a closing gesture that would be worthy of Resnais. What a beautiful film!!!

craig.

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#99 Post by Don Lope de Aguirre » Thu Jun 07, 2007 5:49 pm

Thanks for the info guys, much appreciated! I was only able to find
one article about this film online.

All that sodomy and no discussion? :shock: Considering the extras in the French edition it's disappointing that the UK edition is 'bare'. Still, maybe some actions speak for themselves. :-k

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#100 Post by Tommaso » Fri Jun 08, 2007 5:56 am

Thanks for the info on the Renoir box, Ellipsis. Considering the price of the Optimum set, I would still suggest getting the Lionsgate box (no doubles with any CC releases) instead if you can live without "Dejeuner sur l'herbe", as the films already released by Criterion seem to be far superior in the CC version. Of course I'm wondering what will be in OPtimum's Vol.2 set: I assume they will at least take over "Nana" from the Lionsgate set, but they might throw in english subbed versions of "La chienne" and "On purge Bébé" at least. The prospect of a second Optimum box currently also holds me back from getting the French or Spanish releases of "Catherine" and "Tire-au-flanc" (those being silent don't pose as much problems language-wise). But I fear they will rather complete the Stage&Spectacle trilogy or do "The Lower depths" and "Boudu"...

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