(2016/Film Movement DVD)/Bad
(2017/Film Movement DVD)/Candy
Films By Jean Rouch (1956
- 1969/Icarus DVD Set)/Gun
Festival Favorites, Volume One: White Shadow
(2013) + Women
Without Men (2010
(1977/Twilight Time Limited Edition Blu-ray)
C+/B-/B-/C+/C/C+/C+/B+ Sound: B-/B-/B-/C+/C+/C+/C+/C+ Extras:
B-/C/C/C+/C-/C+/D/C Films: B-/C+/C/B/C+/B-/C+/A-
Blu-ray is now only available from our friends at Twilight Time, is
limited to only 3,000 copies and can be ordered while supplies last,
from the links below.
following releases are a serious cross section of dramas and
documentaries dealing with the tales of people all over the world,
art films and news all worth you knowing about...
start with Boo Junfeng's Apprentice
(2016), a disturbing film about executioners, a veteran at it (Wan
Hanafi) and the potential title character (Fir Rhaman) who is anxious
for some reason to work with him in a morbid business, but is really
motivated by some other hidden secrets. If you have not already been
creeped out by the sense of death and morbidity of the set-up, know
it is a good character study that keeps things tight at 96 minutes
and is a smart film. Maybe it does not ho on to make some big
statement, but I think it has enough to consider that if you're
looking for a film to make you think and challenge you, this will fit
the bill. Aside from a few down moments, this is not bad and worth a
anamorphically enhanced 1.85 X 1 image looks as good as it can in
this format and plays fine, while we get the sound in lossy Malay
Dolby Digital 5.1 and lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo, but the 5.1 is
very surprisingly clean and clear. Too bad its not lossless.
include small notes inside the left hand paper sleeve, a feature
length audio commentary track by the director, his short film Tanjong
Rhu (aka The
about sexuality and censorship and oppression that is a waste of the
government's time and not good) that runs about 20 minutes and
Theatrical Trailers for Film Movement releases
Samir Oliveros' foreign hit Bad
(2017) is a feel good film about the bond between a brother and
sister in Colombia. After hitting a billy goat with their father's
car, the pair go on a mission to right their wrong and earn money in
order to repair the vehicle. Along the way, they discover a few life
lessons, meet some unusual characters, and grow a bit closer as
big winner at several film festivals, the film stars Kiara Howard,
Ambrosio Huffington, Jean Bush, Honlenny Huffington, Michel Robinson,
and Elkin Robinson.
in standard definition on DVD with a 2.35:1 widescreen aspect ratio
and a 5.1 Track in Creole with English Subtitles. The film is very
well shot and has a wide color range that highlight yellows, blues,
and greens very well. This would be a great film to put out in HD or
4K UHD especially.
notes inside the left hand paper sleeve
- a Bonus Short Film
'About Film Movement'
is fun but nothing that blew me away.
directed by Dean Dempsey is a dirty punk rock music fueled acid
flashback that's both dark comedy and horror. Produced on a
shoestring, the film centers around drug addiction and the dying
relationship between a father and son. You can kind of compare it to
in a way... but it's not nearly as impactful or cinematically sound.
film stars Sophia Lamar, Dean Dempsey, Lucille Bignom, Texas Trash,
Neon Music, and Cory Kimbrow-Dana. The film is shot primarily in New
York and is definitely more the exploitation crowd.
burning bridges out west, double-amputee Terry Trash (played by
himself) moves in with his adult son Bobby in his small apartment in
NYC. Bobby is reluctant but committed in helping his ex-junkie
father while trying to stay focused on his own creative pursuits as a
filmmaker. However nothing is as it seems on the surface as both men
are living secret lives that soon intermix.
on DVD with a widescreen aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and a lossy Dolby
Digital 5.1 mix, both of which look/sound fine for the standard
definition format. Compression and lack of vividness in color comes
with the format as well though all in all, the soundtrack here is
nicely mixed and center stage with great punk rock music.
only extra is a Trailer.
film succeeds in being off the wall and a bit outrageous at times and
though is the kind of film that makes you feel dirty after watching
Films By Jean Rouch
(1956 - 1969) includes a new documentary on the director and eight
films that are documentaries, now restored, that shows Rouch as a
forerunner of the French New Wave. Those are dramatic films from
1959 into the early 1970s whose style and freedom changed world
cinema forever. However, like 'Kino Pravda' before it in the 1930s
Soviet Union, Cinema Verite (film truth in both cases) more by the
French than even Russians searched for a new honestly and realism in
filmmaking. The shock here is that Rouch went out of his way to
interview and show persons from other cultures who had not really
been seen on film or even otherwise and captured their worlds
films were captured on 16mm film, in black and white, then color and
are as follows:
deals with Ghana and the Hauka religious sect, controversial even
then and on the visually graphic side, so beware.
(1956) is in the same country with ideas of water spirits and now, a
title considered very racist.
(1958) takes us to Nigeria to meet Abidjan migrants, but tries a
different approach to showing this.
(1961) has white colonial French students meeting with African
classmates to see what results. Along the lines of the Apted Up
series, it is a learning experience left as natural as possible.
(1965) shot between Mail and Niger as the 'gow' hunters of the
Songhay people do what the title suggests; animal lovers will not be
(1967) is a companion piece with three Songhay men to add to previous
(1969) has Nigerian friends of Rouch go to France for a different
take on things.
(1962) has a young lady sent home from school walking the streets and
encountering various people.
this is interesting viewing, even groundbreaking at times when you
really think about it, but you do really have to be in a documentary
mood to sit through the whole set. With that said, it is good
viewing and even something special, but some might still be bored
because this is not their thing. I think I saw some of these a long
time ago, but now I can really say I got a thorough go-through on
them and can see what all the fuss is about.
1.33 X 1 image transfer can show the age of the materials used, but
this is far superior a transfer to all previous releases of the film
(if any) and though color might be off in parts and these may be soft
(where's the Blu-ray?), work was definitely done to upgrade and fix
them and its amazing they survived. The
lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono on the films will also obviously show
their age, but they sound good under the circumstances.
include an illustrated booklet on the film including informative text
and essays on Rouch and his work running 24 pages, while we also get
the Documentary Jean
Rouch: The Adventurous Filmmaker
(2017) that runs just under an hour. All in all, its a good, smart
set worth your time, especially if it is of your particular interest.
is a documentary from about how two young men in Kenya are sick of
the police, organized criminals and having to survive via crime,
switching to long-distance running to become professional runners,
maybe Olympians and get out of the vicious cycle. High odds and
obstacles are in the way, though that also sounds like a formulaic
et al) so though this variant is for real, we've still seen this
plenty of times and in many other documentaries. A Canadian
production (of all things, good for them!), this runs a watchable 89
minutes-long that is not too long, but never short.
saves this is its apparent honesty and that made it worth a look,
with any history learned a plus, because it still takes us a few
places we mostly if ever have been before.
anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image is on the soft side with its
share of motion blur, but its not too bad, while the lossy Dolby
Digital 2.0 Stereo is simple, but fares better overall. Theatrical
Trailers for Film Movement releases are the only extras.
up is the 3-film IndiePix
Festival Favorites, Volume One
DVD set with I
Believe In Unicorns
and two films we've covered before, accompanied by their review
are good choices and certainly dramas worth your time.
is a controversially-named documentary look at the rise and conflicts
in the founding of Israel, a great country and major ally in the
Middle East in the face of many Arab countries who might not be as
keen on the U.S., et al. It is obviously less derogatory than other
names Jews and Israelis are being called post-WWII over there, but
you can also imagine it is what it feels like/seems to those who were
there pre-WWII/Israel or those old enough when the briefly-lived
Palestine was land dominated for eons as part of the Ottoman Empire.
this very title is streeting, unwise U.S. policy with the current
2017 administration going bonkers for the poorest Prime Minister in
Israel's history have decided to name part to all of Jerusalem the
country's new capital, a move rejected by the U.N. in a landmark
defiance of the current U.S. position, though also showing the world
is sick of the current irresponsible shenanigans of a country that
helped make the U.N. possible in better days.
all that, this work holds up well enough in that it asks a key
question about Israel in what part of the land is that country, what
are the final standards of what is settled territory and if it keeps
shifting all the time and changes as the political back & fourth
gets more wild and especially lately, unnecessarily severe, what will
its final shape and status be? The desperate Jerusalem move actually
desecrates one of the inarguable reasons for Israel and even
Christianity over there: the long existence of holy land. That is
why, even with this recent stunt, Israel and world Jewry will always
have a claim there.
some of this is already dated, no matter the fine points I may or may
not agree on, but is still worth a good look because its adds to the
conversation. At 110 minutes, it says much, but more should be said,
especially at a time with such a leadership vacuum.
anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image and lossy Dolby Digital 2.0
Stereo look and sound as good as they can considering the rough
nature of various historic video and even film clips (the film
sometimes needs HD restorations and photochemical upgrades), but
plays well under the circumstances. Theatrical Trailers for Film
Movement releases are the only extras, if that.
complete strangers brought together by fate go on a road trip
searching for some meaning to their lives. As they journey across
the country sightseeing, they run into various situations, accidents
and unplanned events. As they learn more about each other (and
themselves) they eventually become friends ...and learn that
sometimes there no greater journey than the journey home in Yoji
(1977, aka Shiawase
No Kiiroi Hankachi).
Akemi and Yusaku were three complete strangers until Kinya offered
them a ride. Kinya, after being dumped, decides to quit his job, buy
a red sports car, go on a road trip to Hokkaido and picks up Akemi
(and tries to get laid). Akemi after finding out her boyfriend
cheated on her, is also taking a break/vacation from life joins Kinya
on his impromptu road trip. Yusaku was recently released from prison
and trying to get home. Both Kinya and Akemi are depressed about
their life, but if life had to teach them anything ...are that things
go unplanned. As they travel from place to place sightseeing, they
are finally brought together when they learn Yusaku's his wife might
be still waiting for him, before their trip he sent her a postcard
saying that if she forgives him and wants him back, to hang a yellow
handkerchief in front of their home. Kinya and Akemi decides to help
Yusaku, and by helping him they also helped themselves learning that
if an ex-con like Yusaku can still find happiness ...then maybe they
was an amusing film from 1977, now available on Blu-ray. Licensed by
Twilight Time, the company seems to be about bring old classic movies
onto modern Blu-ray format. The film was a story about imperfect
lives of imperfect people, it had moments with heartbreak,
heartwarming scenes mixed with melodrama comedy/friendship and ends
with the message of how hope springs eternal.
1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image looks great throughout
with incredible color, depth and detail, but the
DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 2.0 Mono lossless mix does show its age, so
expect the usual sonic limits.
include a nicely illustrated booklet on the film including
informative text and yet another excellent, underrated essay by the
great film scholar Julie Kirgo, while the Blu-ray disc adds an
Isolated Music Score from composer Masaru Sato.
limited edition Blu-ray, buy it and other great exclusives while
supplies last at these links:
Nicholas Sheffo, Ricky Chiang (Handkerchief)