Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

Discuss DVDs released in the Eclipse and Essential Art House lines and the films on them.
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knives
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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#26 Post by knives » Sat Jan 14, 2012 4:39 pm

Got both already.

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MichaelB
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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#27 Post by MichaelB » Sat Jan 14, 2012 4:54 pm

A Boring Afternoon is on YouTube, but without subtitles.

You can get English subtitles here, but you'll have to work out how to match them up yourself. Alternatively, just print them out and follow the dialogue that way.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#28 Post by charal » Sat Jan 14, 2012 6:03 pm

This is the first time any Schorm feature has been released in the English-speaking world. RETURN OF THE PRODIGAL has long been one of my Second Run requests so I am more than happy to finally see it. Hopefully COURAGE FOR EVERYDAY will appear one day in either R1 or R2.

Doesn't anyone consider the possibility that Second Run will also release PEARLS OF THE DEEP replete with the excised shorts?

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#29 Post by karmajuice » Sat Jan 14, 2012 6:05 pm

This announcement made my day. Thanks for the info, MichaelB. A pity about the omitted shorts, but given the size of the set it makes sense. I adore the Czech New Wave and I only own one of these, so I'll definitely pick this up. Here's hoping we get more Czech films coming our way soon (and Eastern European films in general). Of the Czech films in circulation, so many have rather pitiful transfers; it's great to see a company like Criterion do something with them, people who have the resources to make substantial improvements upon the existing transfers.

Although I'll always have the utmost respect for Second Run and the risks they take as a company. They do fantastic work, and I hope Criterion is paying attention to the work they're doing.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#30 Post by MichaelB » Sat Jan 14, 2012 6:24 pm

karmajuice wrote:Although I'll always have the utmost respect for Second Run and the risks they take as a company. They do fantastic work, and I hope Criterion is paying attention to the work they're doing.
Put it like this: Second Run first had an inkling of what Criterion were doing when someone from the company ordered a copy of Daisies from their website a few weeks ago!

It'll be interesting to see these new transfers - I have no doubt that they'll be a gargantuan improvement on the Facets releases in every way (especially Pearls of the Deep and The Joke), but since they're Eclipse releases there's a distinct possibility that they won't be much of an advance on the Second Run equivalents. But there's nothing seriously wrong with those (especially Daisies), so that's not a particularly big deal.
Doesn't anyone consider the possibility that Second Run will also release PEARLS OF THE DEEP replete with the excised shorts?
I've raised it with them, but I think the feeling is that the film is a little too obscure to stand up on its own. Which is why I'm really impressed with Criterion's solution: it's a genuinely clever conceptual idea for a box set, and one that keeps its artistic threshold sky-high even when adhering to its ground rules.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#31 Post by charal » Sat Jan 14, 2012 6:35 pm

To keep everyone happy perhaps Criterion could put out another box called
MORE PEARLS: THE ORIGINS OF THE CZECH NEW WAVE. The contents could perhaps comprise:

Forman's BLACK PETER (1963)
Jires' FIRST CRY (1963)
Chitylova's SOMETHING ELSE (1963)
Juracek's JOSEPH KILIAN (1963)
Schorm's COURAGE FOR EVERYDAY (1964)
Nemec's DIAMONDS OF THE NIGHT (1964)
plus the two omitted shorts from PEARLS
[All the above heralded the new wave and preceded the PEARLS feature.]

Maybe this deserves the full blow-out treatment on Blu with extras galore! (Just a hint.)

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#32 Post by TMDaines » Sat Jan 14, 2012 6:39 pm

MichaelB wrote:
Doesn't anyone consider the possibility that Second Run will also release PEARLS OF THE DEEP replete with the excised shorts?
I've raised it with them, but I think the feeling is that the film is a little too obscure to stand up on its own. Which is why I'm really impressed with Criterion's solution: it's a genuinely clever conceptual idea for a box set, and one that keeps its artistic threshold sky-high even when adhering to its ground rules.
I feel like I'm missing something here. Everyone seems happy with a shortened Pearls of the Deep but aren't they just exercising several episodes of a portmanteau film? Isn't this like Boccaccio '70 being cut down to three episodes outside of Italy?

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#33 Post by MichaelB » Sat Jan 14, 2012 6:45 pm

Pearls of the Deep was released in the same five-part form everywhere - I think it was only reunited with the sixth and seventh parts when the Czech DVD came out a few years ago. All the parts are entirely discrete: the only thing they have in common is a Bohumil Hrabal short story as their source.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#34 Post by TMDaines » Sat Jan 14, 2012 8:24 pm

MichaelB wrote:Pearls of the Deep was released in the same five-part form everywhere - I think it was only reunited with the sixth and seventh parts when the Czech DVD came out a few years ago. All the parts are entirely discrete: the only thing they have in common is a Bohumil Hrabal short story as their source.
Ahhh, thanks for the clarification.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#35 Post by MyNameCriterionForum » Sun Jan 15, 2012 4:50 am

As someone else said elsewhere: Tiny Furniture on the mainline but Daisies relegated to this set? I find that decision almost literally offensive, privileging class, youth and familiar language over historical importance, craft and political risk. Absurd and insulting.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#36 Post by moviepas » Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:10 am

Pět holek na krku (1967). Dir. Evald Schorm. What about this one??? AKA Saddled with Five Girls(Australia), or, Five Girls Around My Neck. Considered Czech New Wave & not seen by me since the 1970s. Similar in story line to Peter Seller's The World of Henry Orient. I liked this film. I enjoy Czech films.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#37 Post by Stefan Andersson » Sun Jan 15, 2012 9:14 am

MichaelB:
- thanks for clarifying the Pearls of the Deep content.

- thanks for mentioning Ten Thousand Suns. Really good film. Should be a natural for Second Run. And how about the excellent 60s film Cold Days?

- maybe Second Run could release the complete Pearls of the Deep as a double feature with some other, not yet released, Hrabal adaptation? Postriziny (1981) is, to my eyes, top choice; a fabulous Menzel comedy, with Magda Vásáryová and Rudolf Hrusinsky on top form. Never released in the UK, AFAIK, though it deserved to be. I´m sure you know the film. Please bring it up with Second Run. BTW, the photography is a natural for Blu.

charal:
- you have a really good idea for an Eclipse box!

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#38 Post by MichaelB » Sun Jan 15, 2012 11:37 am

charal wrote:To keep everyone happy perhaps Criterion could put out another box called
MORE PEARLS: THE ORIGINS OF THE CZECH NEW WAVE. The contents could perhaps comprise:

Forman's BLACK PETER (1963)
Jires' FIRST CRY (1963)
Chitylova's SOMETHING ELSE (1963)
Juracek's JOSEPH KILIAN (1963)
Schorm's COURAGE FOR EVERYDAY (1964)
Nemec's DIAMONDS OF THE NIGHT (1964)
plus the two omitted shorts from PEARLS
[All the above heralded the new wave and preceded the PEARLS feature.]
Forman's Audition (Konkurs) would be a better choice - not least because it's often cited as the first "true" New Wave film, along with Stefan Uher's The Sun in a Net (both date from 1962). I agree with the others, though.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#39 Post by SamLowry » Sun Jan 15, 2012 2:21 pm

As someone else said elsewhere: Tiny Furniture on the mainline but Daisies relegated to this set? I find that decision almost literally offensive, privileging class, youth and familiar language over historical importance, craft and political risk. Absurd and insulting.
I agree completely...in fact that's been a long standing complaint with many of the Eclipse sets of the past year or so. I don't know whether to be ecstatic that Criterion is releasing them or completely annoyed that titles that should be getting their own blu ray release with supplements are being relegated to a barebones dvd box. Many of the 60s Japanese titles, Victim (Basil Dearden), Naruse....are all more worthy of a supplement-rich blu ray than a number of the titles they are releasing on blu. Though the April releases seems to be a step up in quality overall.
It sure would be lovely, however, for Criterion to do some mainline releases beyond Marketa Lazarova.
Well I've been requesting it every year now for about 10 years, hopefully when Criterion does get it out (on blu) it'll be a 2 disc release with the full 3 hour version on one disc & a boat load of supplements on the second: a doc on Vlacil, a doc on Liska, a doc/short on the original book & its difficulty in translating it into English (maybe someone can finally translate it & include it in a limited box?), a doc on the making of the film, perhaps some of his earlier documentary shorts or available footage of interviews. It's definitely a title that deserves the full treatment.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#40 Post by MichaelB » Sun Jan 15, 2012 2:51 pm

Marketa Lazarová is already out on region-free Blu-ray, and I suspect a still entirely hypothetical Criterion edition would use exactly the same transfer, since the Czech National Film Archive's 4K digital master is now regarded as the definitive source.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#41 Post by MichaelB » Sun Jan 15, 2012 6:57 pm

zedz wrote:And if people are going to avoid seeing brilliant films in what's probably the best image quality they'll ever enjoy on home video
This point can't be emphasised enough. The English-friendly DVDs of Pearls of the Deep and The Joke were abominably bad, and the Czech disc of Capricious Summer isn't any great shakes either - and the Schorm appears to be a world DVD premiere, or at least an English-friendly premiere. So that's four out of six titles that should see a marked improvement in their previous presentation.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#42 Post by mfunk9786 » Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:08 pm

But what about the argument that it's "simply awful"?

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#43 Post by Jean-Luc Garbo » Mon Jan 16, 2012 5:23 pm

MichaelB wrote:Marketa Lazarová is already out on region-free Blu-ray, and I suspect a still entirely hypothetical Criterion edition would use exactly the same transfer, since the Czech National Film Archive's 4K digital master is now regarded as the definitive source.
This is why I hope that Criterion has special plans for the film. This (along with Profound Desires of the Gods) has got to be one of the most important films that they're sitting on. Of course, they could just release it with Hejtmánek's Sentiment as the sole extra and I wouldn't complain. (I have the Second Run box so I hope they'd do more with the extras if they could.) This box is a good step forward - I hope that it augers well for more Czech films or even works to help Criterion test the waters for more - and I can't wait to buy it for friends. A jewel like Marketa Lazarova also seems like a no-brainer to release soon, though.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#44 Post by petoluk » Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:22 pm

This should probably go to Rumors and News (and I apologize if it's already there), but - according to a news article @ the Czech site Zona.bloudil.cz (very reliable, in my experience), Criterion plans (planned?) to release two more Czech New Wave collections:

Koreny ceske nove vlny / Roots of Czech New Wave, containing:
- O necem jinem / Something Different
- Transport z raje / Transport from Paradise
- Demanty noci / Diamonds of the Night
- Krik / The Cry
- Kazdy den odvahu / Courage for Every Day

Dozvuky ceske nove vlny / Echos of Czech New Wave
- Vsichni dobri rodaci / All My Good Countrymen
- Spalovac mrtvol / The Cremator
- Ucho / The Ear
- Valerie a tyden divu / Valerie and Her Week of Wonders

I'd be only happy if this turned out to be true...

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#45 Post by swo17 » Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:49 pm

Perhaps that's why there were three pearls in the New Year's clue? It would be fantastic if it's true.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#46 Post by SpiderBaby » Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:58 pm

If these are to happen, I wonder why not the obvious Fruit of Paradise or Happy End in any of the sets?

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#47 Post by knives » Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:08 pm

I hate double dipping, but hot dog would these be worth it.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#48 Post by Calvin » Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:18 pm

I find it off that Criterion would (supposedly) give Marketa Lazarova mainline treatment while relegating more commercially viable titles like The Cremator to Eclipse. They're both equally great films in my opinion. The Cremator also has the benefit of a living director that could contribute to the release.
Last edited by Calvin on Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#49 Post by knives » Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:20 pm

Probably a marketing strategy. This first set is going to sell like hot cakes for example pretty exclusively due to Dasies. Likewise I'm sure more people will buy a set just for The Cremator or Valerie and Her Week of Wonders than without. Marketa is known enough to sell itself, but not others.

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Re: Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave

#50 Post by Calvin » Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:40 pm

Didn't Dark Sky Films just release a Cremator DVD anyway?

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