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John Ford Silent Westerns 'Straight Shooting' and 'Hell Bent' Raise a Ruckus

We're treated to many eye-catching examples of John Ford's talents in Universal's 4K restoration of silent westerns Straight Shooting and Hell Bent, now available on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber.


Douglas Sirk's Oppressive and Beautiful Worlds

That today's viewers can't easily fall into the fantasy of Rock Hudson as an "Indian" in Taza Son of Cochise -- one of three films discussed here -- provides its own distancing and underlining of the themes that make it Sirkian, the rampant phoniness used as a vehicle for something true.


Susan Sontag's 'Duet for Cannibals' Delves into the Games People Play

Is Susan Sontag's Duet for Cannibals a study in personal human behavior? Or is it an allegory of the seductions of fascism and power?


Romy Schneider Shimmers, Simmers, "Sautets" and "Zulawskis"

Directors Claude Sautet and Andrzej Zulawski turn the camera's gaze on the glorious Romy Schneider in these four drama, romance, and crime films available from Film Movement and Kino Lorber.


Huxters and Do-Gooders and the "Forbidden Fruit" Film Series

Have a peak behind the censored curtain, if you dare, with Dwain Esper's Marihuana and Narcotic, Crane Wilbur's Tomorrow's Children and Harry J. Revier's Child Bride. These exploitation films are certain to provoke.


Old British Films, Boring? Pshaw!

The passage of time tends to make old films more interesting, such as these seven films of the late '40s and '50s from British directors John Boulting, Carol Reed, David Lean, Anthony Kimmins, Charles Frend, Guy Hamilton, and Leslie Norman.


Silent Women Filmmakers No Longer So Silent: Alice Guy Blaché and Julia Crawford Ivers

The works of silent filmmakers Alice Guy Blaché and Julia Crawford Ivers were at risk of being forever lost. Kino Lorber offers their works on Blu-Ray. Three cheers for film historians and film restoration.


From the Smoker to 'The Oscar': The Sweet Stink of Success

Russell Rouse's The Oscar is fabulously gaudy and kitschy, with overdone sets and costumes. The film practically hyperventilates in mood, story, and acting. You should see it.


'Capital in the 21st Century': Pie for the Rich, Crumbs for the People

Justin Pemberton's film version of Thomas Piketty's landmark book on the dangers of today's yawning income inequality, Capital in the 21st Century, is more TED Talk than documentary, but it's a handy summary nonetheless.


Diabolically Delon: Three French Thrillers

French thrillers Diabolically Yours, Farewell Friend, and Un Flic star the handsome and controversial tough guy, Alain Delon, whose off-screen persona was not unlike his hard bastard characters.


England's Postwar Paranoia Creeps in the Shadows of Three Film-Noirs

Something portentous comes out of quiet ordinary postwar English life: three schizoid noirs from directors Carol Reed, Roy and John Boulting, and Tharold Dickinson.


Jerry Hopper's 'Naked Alibi' Draws Comparisons to Douglas Sirk's Films

Although it's fair to state that Jerry Hopper is no Douglas Sirk, it's also true that their careers tangoed around each other, as seen in Hopper's Naked Alibi.


Hitchcock, Quietly Suspenseful

Hitchcock's silent films demonstrate that he was not only a master of visual storytelling but confidently made silents as though they had sound effects.


'The Great McGinty' Takes on the Great Political Machine

Preston Sturges' classic Hollywood comedy The Great McGinty is an incisive and bold political satire that explores the ridiculous depths of American corruption—80 years before the Trump era.


Resounding Silence and Profound Superfluity: The Actorly Camera in Jean-Pierre Melville's 'Un flic'

The movements of the camera in Melville's Un flic attempt to overcome one of the most inscrutable divides in existence.


There'll Always Be An Ealing: Postwar England's Little Studio That Could -- and Did

The Ealing name has been revived in the new century, but film buffs will always regard its incandescent era as that period when it held up a scrappy and schizoid mirror to postwar England's depressions and aspirations.


Domesticity Marks a Deeply Fraught Terrain in Ida Lupino Films

The early Ida Lupino films hold a particular nuance for female characters and the textures of their everyday lives, which has rarely been exhibited in classical Hollywood filmmaking.


'Dead of Night' Haunts Above and Beyond Its Imitators

Film anthology Dead of Night's influence went far beyond what its creators must have imagined.


Hard, Fast, and Beautiful: The Legacy of Director Ida Lupino

The four restored films in Kino Lorber's Blu-ray box. Ida Lupino: Filmmaker Collection, give viewers a fresh opportunity to consider the career of Ida Lupino, the only woman directing Hollywood features in the 1950s. Woman in Hiding (also from Kino Lorber) is an example of the work Lupino did as an actress for hire, and which allowed her to finance her own films.

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'The Night Stalker' Crept Through the 1970s Constraints of Made for TV Film

In the '70s there was something sinister sneaking into suburban homes between the sitcom and the 11 o'clock news where the real horrors played out. The made for TV horror film The Night Stalker would be among the best.


Godard's Sci-fi/Noir Alphaville' Is Witty and Subversive

Alphaville's pulpy sci-fi plot acts as a warm coat of familiarity as Godard slyly subverts one genre trope after another.


10 Old-School Halloween Horrors: Blu-rays That Go Bump in the Night

Reader, we've sifted through many of this year's ghastly Blu-ray offerings so that you don't have to. Venture in for watchable goods for your macabre marathons and blood-curdling binges.


David Lynch's 'Lost Highway' Loosens Our Grip on What and Whom We Think We Know

We move through life among strangers whom we try to make less strange by identifying repetitive behaviors as identity. At some point, we might even say we "know" a person. Lynch's Lost Highway shows that we don't know anything about each other.


New York Film Festival 2019: 'Bacurau'

Loony anti-colonialist Brazilian satire Bacurau doesn't always balance its humor with its bite, but its communitarian soul, oddball wit, and dark vision of the future still hits home.


Hitchcock Breaks the Sound Barrier in Early Films 'Blackmail' and 'Murder!'

Hitchcock's motif of treacherous toying with filmgoers is intriguing to spot in his early silent-to-talkie thrillers, Blackmail and Murder!


A Private Revolution: Jean-Luc Godard's Second Wave

Jean-Luc Godard's cinematic oddities First Name: Carmen, Détective, and Hélas pour moi, newly released on Blu-ray from Kino Lorber, embody the vast landscape of possibilities open to the director during the '80s and '90s.


Doris Day Plays Kit and Mouse in Hitchcock Imitator, 'Midnight Lace'

Followed on a foggy night, a menacing voice on the telephone, trapped in an elevator... Doris Day's Kit Preston verges on a nervous breakdown in Midnight Lace.


Brilliant Moral Science - and Dinosaurs -- from the Yeaworth-Harris Trilogy!

From the makers of The Blob, Irvin S. Yeaworth, Jr .and Jack H. Harris, 4D Man and Dinosaurus! (restored by Kino Lorber) give film fans a can't-look-away sci-fi gaze into the victims of progress.


Men and Women Behaving Badly: 'Pursuit' and 'The Girl Most Likely To'

Made for TV programs of the '70s really knew how to dish it out. Michael Crichton's Pursuit is all about men conquering each other; whereas Lee Philips' The Girl Most Likely To is a poisoned bon-bon about making pain palatable.


Silent Magic: The Films of Charley Bowers and Herbert Brenon

Flicker Alley's The Extraordinary World of Charley Bowers gathers and restores what remains of an elusive and very clever film pioneer, and Kino Lorber shares the silently charming magic of Herbert Brenon's Peter Pan.


Applesauce to the Gander: Restoring RKO's Early Talkies

All or most of the films in RKO Classic Romances and RKO Classic Adventures are in the public domain and circulated in poor condition. These Library of Congress prints have been digitally restored by Lobster Films in Paris and consistently look and sound very good.


The Rise and Fall of Female Silent Filmmakers

Filmmaking was only one element of a much wider feminist movement that was manifesting itself in various forms, from the flapper to the suffragette to the birth control advocate to the bohemian female writer and political activist.


When Capers Were Mod: Heist Films 'Robbery' and 'Midas Run'

By the time Yates' Robbery and Kjellin's Midas Run came along, the Hollywood Production Code was weakening as the western world entered a period of rebellious youth, short skirts, sexual permissiveness, Cold War cynicism, colonial wars, and general political uppity-ness.


'Fantômas: Three Film Collection' Reveals the Master Criminal and Cornerstone of French Pop Culture

The French Fantômas films Fantômas, Fantômas Unleashed, Fantômas vs. Scotland Yard and similar crime film projects in Britain, Germany, and the US are related by secret, labyrinthine, diabolical blueprints of unfathomable complication.


When Charles Bronson went to France: 'Rider on the Rain' and Cold Sweat'

Dismissed as "trash" in their day, Charles Bronson films Rider on the Rain and Cold Sweat belong to a Golden Age of internationally co-produced Euro-thrillers that combine pulp storytelling with stylistic elegance and intense emotion.


Three Stylish British Silents: 'Shooting Stars', 'Underground' and 'The Informer'

While Anthony Asquith's Shooting Stars and Underground look excellent on Kino Lorber's digital restoration, Arthur Robison's The Informer, looks most spectacular, thanks to working from the original negative and a tinted nitrate print.


The World Is Phony, the Pain Isn't: Douglas Sirk's 'The Tarnished Angels'

The Tarnished Angels is a paradox. It's highly Sirkian, yet it hardly resembles the glossy Technicolor soaps that made his reputation and were generating so much box office.

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