(1989/Arrow 4K Set*)/A
Good Woman Is Hard To Find
(2020/Film Movement DVD)/Ivans
History Of The Long Road
(2019/FilmRise/*all MVD Blu-rays)/A
Tale Of Two Cities
(1935/MGM/Warner Archive Blu-ray)
Ultra HD Picture: B+ Picture: B/B-/B/B-/B+/B+/B Sound:
B-/B/B-/B-/B+/B+/C+ Extras: C-/C-/B+/B/B/C/C+ Films: C+ &
Tale Of Two Cities
Blu-ray is now only available from Warner Bros. through their Warner
Archive series and can be ordered from the links below.
a solid new sets of dramas for you to consider as awards season
up are two of the last films by Robert Altman associate Alan Rudolph,
who directed in his style and with his realism and sometimes blunt
points, but never totally developed his own style. That becomes
evident in both AfterGlow
(1997) and Ray
(2018), now here as a double feature Blu-ray.
won Julie Christie an acting Oscar and she steals some of the scenes
she is in, the wife of a handyman (Nick Nolte) who gets involved with
the wife (Laura Flynn Boyle) of her distracted, unsexual husband
(Jonny Lee Miller) in a romp that has some moments, but is a little
predictable, especially after he and Altman have done some of what we
see here before. This runs about two hours and was always a mixed
bag to me. I always felt it had more potential than it delivered on,
but it is worth seeing once just to see what does work.
is a meeting I wish I could have skipped, has both title characters
(David Carradine and Sondra Locke) as two people who com into new
money late in life, then meet each other. The script is all over the
place, not much here is memorable, the actors are wasted and the film
is so off, you are not certain the times it is being funny
unintentionally, unintentionally or at all. Kim Wayans is here ion a
serious role, but she still comes across as comical in the mode of
her work on TV's In
though I always liked her.
Mathis, Keith David and Jennifer Tilly are also here, all of whom I
also like, yet do not get to do anything memorable either. The film
has little to say about its characters or situations. If this was
about old age, it does not address that well either. It is just an
unfortunate disappointment that runs 100 minutes and only see it if
you are REALLY interested.
for each film are the only extras.
(2020) is one of the years more mature, smart films, telling the tale
of loneliness, oppression, sex and relationships in 1800s England.
Kate Winslet (downplaying her beauty) is a fossil hunter who survives
by finding what she can and selling it in a shop with her mother.
She was once very famous in doing this, but that eventually tapered
off. One day, a young man (James McArdle) who is a lawyer arrives
with his wife (Saoirse Ronan) who is not well.
wants to hire the expert to show him how to find fossils himself and
will pay her well. She wants no part of it, but then accepts and the
situation becomes tense, followed by some twists and turns. I want
to say more, but that would ruin the film, It is not perfect, but
ambitious and cinematic, more so than most releases of late. The
locales and acting (also including Gemma Jones and Fiona Shaw) are
impressive and I definitely recommend it!
Making Of featurette is the only extra.
(1989) offers only the shorter theatrical cut of the film in 4K, but
it is still a revelation that shows the film looking at its best
since I saw it in 35mm when it was originally released. The longer
version of the film is still here on regular Blu-ray, though I think
that version works a little better still. This also has all the same
extras as the previous Arrow version we reviewed recently at this
your further reference, the other times we reviewed the film:
Import Australian Blu-rayDVD
leaves the tech coverage below, but after the pandemic, the film's
value in expressing the priceless ness of cinema and the shared
experience thereof only makes it more relevant than ever. The timing
of this release is profound and this is now the edition to won!
Good Woman Is Hard To Find
(2020) is an intense and interesting picture with great performances
all around, but mainly in its lead star Sarah Bolger. The Ireland
made film follows a recently widowed mother of two (Bolger) whose
life gets twisted when a man hides drugs in her home as part of an
elaborate scheme to rip off some bad guys. However, this ignites a
rage inside the woman who is destined to find out what really
happened in her husband's murder and the great lengths she will go to
in order to protect her children.
film also stars Andrew Simpson, Edward Hogg, and Jane Brennan with
direction by Abner Pastoll.
is a surprising number of special features, which is nice and
Commentary by director Abner Pastoll
Behind the Scenes Footage
film by Bernard Rose (Candyman,
(2000) stars Danny Huston and explores the intense drug fused life of
a Hollywood producer. The film co-stars Peter Weller and Lisa Enos
and uses the 1886 novella The
Death of Ivan Ilyich
as a source of inspiration. A heavy and dark film, it may not be
completely original, but is most certainly a cautionary tale and one
ripe for rediscovery.
Cut presented in two versions; the preferred director's version and
the producer's version, with 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
Producer's Cut with Stereo DTS-HD Master Audio, presented for the
new commentary for the Extended Cut with co-writer/producer/actor
Lisa Enos and
- a brand new documentary on the making of the film from Lisa Enos
with Lisa Enos, director Bernard Rose, actors Danny Huston, Peter
Weller and Adam Krentzman from a 2018 screening at the Egyptian
Theatre in Los Angeles
interview with Lisa Enos and Bernard Rose from the 2001 Santa Barbara
Party Sequence Outtakes
sleeve featuring original and newly-commissioned artwork by Peter
Collector's booklet featuring new writing by Robert J.E. Simpson.
(Sabrina Carpenter) is a young girl who has been brought up by her
father and they have been on the road still she was born. They live
from place to place in their RV, working odd jobs and living by their
own rules, but when her father suddenly passes away, she is truly on
her own. All the life she's ever known she begins to question, how
does she keep going on alone, should she settle down and find roots?
Ani Simon-Kennedy's A
Short History Of The Long Road
(2019), Nola and her father are vagabonds, living on the road and by
their wits. She has been taught life is better without home or
responsibilities and everything they own fits in a RV (but she not so
sure). When her father suddenly passes away and her RV breaks down
on the road. She lives by squatting from place to place, more often
broken than she likes and she goes in search of her long-lost mother.
But the truth is never what she expected and on the road she meets
rough but kind old man (Danny Trejo), an auto body shop owner who
takes her in and helps her when she loses everything.
was a coming-of-age story, quite different life than normal people
but it gives perspective what living on the road is like and why some
people distrust the system and prefer to live off the gird. The main
character eventually learns the truth of what happened to her mother,
gets new insight on what she has been taught and makes a choice, to
continue living as a vagabond or it's better to settle down and have
include photo gallery, blooper reel and trailer.
Tale Of Two Cities
(1935) is back and now restored for Blu-ray by Warner Bros. from
Warner Archive, upgrading the David O. Selznick production to more of
its original glory than ever. A great lead role for the great Ronald
Colman, playing lead Sidney Carton as well as just about anyone you
could think of.
solid supporting cast includes Basil Rathbone in another role that
shows what a great actor he was (though forever stereotyped as
Sherlock Holmes), Reginald Owen and the always fun Edna May Oliver
that makes this one of the better and more lively versions of the
all-time classic book. Yes, even with 126 minutes, parts of the book
we shrunk and the like, but this is a fine Dickens film and one to be
rediscovered. Especially when it has been so well restored!
include the Original Theatrical Trailer, a radio drama version of the
film with Colman in lossless DTS-MA sound, the animated MGM shorts
and the Oscar-nominated live-action MGM short Audioscopiks,
a 3D black and white film that will actually work with red/blue
for playback performance. The 2160p HEVC/H.265, 1.66 X 1, Dolby
Vision/HDR (10; Ultra HD Premium)-enhanced Ultra High Definition
image on Paradiso
is only for the shorter version, but it is the best-looking of all
the releases here, even by a slim margin, with more warmth and some
grain, but a consistent style you can only get from photochemical
film. It also has an edge in detail and color range than the
still-impressive Blu-ray edition, the long version of the film of
which is still here in that format. The DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1
mix is the same as the Blu-ray and that's fine, but I found that the
DTS Mono version was a little better in some ways. The film was
well-recorded at the time, but with limits.
Good Woman is Hard to Find
is presented in anamorphically enhanced, standard definition on DVD
with a widescreen aspect ratio of 2.39:1 and lossy English Dolby
Digital 5.1 surround mix and 2.0 Stereo mix. The film looks pretty
good on DVD despite the obvious compression issues that are evident
in the format and none too surprising. I'm sure an HD enhanced
presentation would improve upon the film's presentation on disc.
This isn't horrible though by any means.
is presented in 1080p high definition with an MPEG-4 AVC codec, a
widescreen aspect ratio of 1.85:1, and audio mixes in lossless
English DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 and English DTS-HD MA 2.0
Stereo. The presentation on disc is nice and strong as per the usual
Short History Of The Long Road
is here in 1080p 1.85 X 1 image looks really good, a nice, clear,
clean, consistent HD shoot that has some style, while the DTS-HD MA
(Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix delivers all the dialogue and music
with a proper soundfield.
are presented in 1080p 1.85 X 1 digital High Definition from what
look like slightly older HD masters, with AfterGlow
shot nicely on film and offers some styling of its own at times that
is not going for fidelity, while Ray
is an HD shoot that can look harsh and show its age, especially when
it tries some visual effects. The
DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 2.0 Stereo lossless mixes on both films can
be dialogue-based as expected, but are just about well-recorded
enough and not bad for the type of sound they offer, though hardly
state of the art for their time.
1080p 1.85 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer can on Ammonite
is not bad, is soft and sometimes on purpose, but very watchable
otherwise, though I bet a 4K version would look better. The
DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mix is nicely recorded, clear
and has nice atmosphere in its soundfield, so that's pretty good all
1.33 X 1 black & white digital High Definition image transfer on
can show the age of the materials used, but this is far superior a
transfer to all previous releases of the film including the DVD we
reviewed years ago. This can look incredibly clean, clear and
detailed in shots and obvious hard work went into this new edition,
so that's a big plus. The
DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 2.0 Mono lossless mix is also better than
the old, lossy Dolby Digital on the DVD and older editions, but it
still cannot help its age, so expect some sonic limits. Otherwise, I
doubt this will ever sound better.
order the A
Tale Of Two Cities
Warner Archive Blu-ray, go to this link for them and many more great
web-exclusive releases at:
Nicholas Sheffo, Ricky Chiang (Road)