10th Oct2019

‘Polyester’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Divine, Tab Hunter, Edith Massey, David Samson, Mary Garlington, Ken King | Written and Directed by John Waters After his prolific 1970s, enfant terrible John Waters directed only two films in the 1980s, at each end of the decade. They were also his two most mainstream and – relatively speaking – palatable works. One […]

23rd Sep2019

‘The Koker Trilogy’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Babek Ahmed Poor, Farhad Kheradmand, Mohamad Ali Keshavarz, Zarifeh Shiva, Buba Bayour, Khodabakhsh Defaei | Written and Directed by Abbas Kiarostami They may not have a breakneck pace, and they may seem unbearably light on explicit incident, but Abbas Kiarostami’s Koker Trilogy did the shared universe thing two decades before Marvel perfected the formula. […]

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02nd Sep2019

‘The Naked Kiss’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Constance Towers, Antony Eisley, Michael Dante, Virginia Grey, Patsy Kelly | Written and Directed by Samuel Fuller The Naked Kiss opens with a fight. And Kelly (Constance Towers) – an experienced escort reclaiming her money from a punter – will never stop fighting. Just for one night it looks like she’s left her worst […]

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02nd Sep2019

‘Shock Corridor’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Starring: Peter Breck, Constance Towers, Larry Tucker, Gene Evans, Hari Rhodes, James Best | Written and Directed by Samuel Fuller The prolific Samuel Fuller carved a niche – or perhaps a gutter – in making exploitation shockers just outside the Hollywood studio system. His had an ability to elevate trash material to something approaching art. […]

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29th Aug2019

‘Do The Right Thing’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Spike Lee, Danny Aiello, John Turtorro, Rosie Perez, Ossie Davis, Bill Nunn, Ruby Dee | Written and Directed by Spike Lee Spike Lee was still in his 20s when he wrote, directed and produced Do the Right Thing, his third feature. It’s a blistering piece of cinema in more ways than one. Set during […]

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22nd Aug2019

‘Klute’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Jane Fonda, Donald Sutherland, Charles Cioffi, Roy Scheider, Robert Milli | Written by Andy Lewis, Dave Lewis | Directed by Alan J. Pakula Released in 1971, Alan J. Pakula’s sophomore feature Klute is regarded as the first of his unofficial Paranoia Trilogy, which would go on to include The Parallax View and All the […]

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15th Aug2019

‘Kiss Me Deadly’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Ralph Meeker, Nick Dennis, Maxine Cooper, Cloris Leachman, Gaby Rodgers | Written by A.I. Bezzerides | Directed by Robert Aldritch Mike Hammer (Ralph Meeker) is driving down the freeway, minding his own business, when he almost hits a woman. Mike is a private investigator, and he knows trouble when he sees it, but he […]

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17th Jul2019

‘Hedwig and the Angry Inch’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: John Cameron Mitchell, Andrea Martin, Michael Pitt, Stephen Trask, Miriam Shor | Written by John Cameron Mitchell, based on the musical by John Cameron Mitchell and Stephen Trask | Directed by John Cameron Mitchell Born a boy in East Berlin, Hansel Schmidt (writer-director John Cameron Mitchell) was raised by a German mother and an […]

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08th Jul2019

‘Swing Time’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Victor Moore, Helen Broderick, Eric Blore | Written by Howard Lindsay, Allan Scott | Directed by George Stevens Dazzling dancer “Lucky” (Fred Astaire) steps off stage and straight into his wedding outfit. But his colleagues don’t want to lose their star player to some dame, so they find ways to […]

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25th Jun2019

‘For All Mankind’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Jim Lovell, Russell Schweickart, Eugene Cernan, Michael Collins, Charles Conrad | Directed by Al Reinert NASA’s historic Apollo programme only becomes more fascinating as time passes and technology advances. Ahead of the release of Todd Douglas Miller’s Apollo 11, Criterion are offering a chance to see another Space Race documentary, similarly relying on remastered […]

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18th Jun2019

‘The Heiress’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Olivia de Havilland, Montgomery Clift, Ralph Richardson, Miriam Hopkins | Written by Ruth Goetz, Augustus Goetz | Directed by William Wyler Ruth and Augustus Goetz adapted their own stage play (itself based on a 19thcentury Henry James novel) for this 1949 melodrama. Directed by William Wyler, just before his mega-budget 1950s period, it’s a […]

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10th Jun2019

‘Dazed and Confused’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Jason London, Wiley Wiggins, Adam Goldberg, Matthew McConaughey, Ben Affleck, Anthony Rapp | Written and Directed by Richard Linklater A certain generation regards this 1993 comedy-drama from Richard “Boyhood” Linklater as their The Breakfast Club. Except its period setting makes it a recollection rather than a snapshot, so it has more in common with […]

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27th May2019

‘My Brilliant Career’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Judy Davis, Sam Neill, Wendy Hughes, Robert Grubb, Peter Whitford | Written by Eleanor Whitcombe | Directed by Gillian Armstrong In the 19th century, on a remote Australian farm, teenager Sybylla (Judy Davis) dreams of a life of culture. Definitely a dreamer rather than a doer, she is shipped around various pockets of her extended […]

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20th May2019

‘Badlands’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Martin Sheen, Sissy Spacek, Warren Oates, Ramon Bieri, Alan Vint | Written and Directed by Terrence Malick Terrence Malick’s small-yet-mythic 1973 crime drama Badlands has its troubling aspects – on the surface, anyway – but it is a stunning debut feature. Based on the murder spree of Charles Starkweather and Caril Ann Fugate, it’s […]

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07th May2019

‘A Face in the Crowd’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Patricia Neal, Andy Griffith, Walter Matthau, Anthony Franciosa, Lee Remick | Written by Budd Schulberg | Directed by Elia Kazan In a tiny Arkansas town, local radio reporter Marcia Jeffries (Patricia Neal) makes a visit to the local jailhouse to do a story on the inmates. She’s expecting anecdotes and maybe a song or […]

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29th Apr2019

‘Au Hasard Balthazar’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Anne Wiazemsky, François Lafarge, Philippe Asselin, Walter Green | Written and Directed by Robert Bresson Robert Bresson’s mid-career misery-fest is often cited as a masterpiece (it’s sitting pretty on a perfect Metacritic score), although having now endured Au Hasard Balthazar twice in my life I must simply be blind to its supposed power. Using the […]

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17th Apr2019

‘The Last Temptation of Christ’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Willem Dafoe, Harvey Keitel, Barbara Hershey, Michael Been, Verna Bloom, Harry Dean Stanton | Written by Paul Schrader | Directed by Martin Scorsese After The Color of Money had proven a box office hit, Martin Scorsese shifted his attention a couple of thousand years, to the life and death of Jesus Christ (Willem Dafoe). […]

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01st Apr2019

‘Detour’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Tom Neal, Ann Savage, Edmund MacDonald, Claudia Drake | Written by Martin Goldsmith | Directed by Edward G. Ulmer Thanks to its absurd plotting and an even more absurd running time (it’s not even seventy minutes long), Detour is a breeze of a watch. Essentially a noir road movie, it’s fast, funny, grimy and […]

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25th Mar2019

‘To Sleep With Anger’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Danny Glover, Mary Alice, Richard Brooks, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Paul Butler | Written and Directed by Charles Burnett Made in 1990, the title To Sleep With Anger may make it sound like a straight-to-VHS domestic abuse thriller but this film is actually a sensitive, sad and funny drama about an African-American community in Los […]

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19th Mar2019

‘Death in Venice’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Dirk Bogarde, Björn Andrésen, Marisa Berenson, Mark Burns, Silvana Mangano | Written by Nicola Badalucco, Luchino Visconti | Directed by Luchino Visconti Thomas Mann’s 1912 novella Der Tod in Venedig focused on a German writer named Gustav von Aschenbach, who decides to take a holiday to Venice, where he falls in love. The greatest change in Luchino […]

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18th Mar2019

‘La Verite’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Brigitte Bardot, Sami Frey, Paul Meaurisse, Charles Vanel, Marie-José Nat | Written by Henri-Georges Clouzot, Véra Clouzot, Simone Drieu, Jérôme Géronimi, Michèle Perrein, Christiane Rochefort | Directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot A mighty success at the time, Henri-Georges Clouzot’s 1960 thriller La Vérité was the film to make a serious actor of Brigitte Bardot. A big part […]

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19th Feb2019

‘Tokyo Drifter’ Blu-ray Review (Criterion)

by Rupert Harvey

Stars: Tetsuya Watari, Ryûji Kita, Chieko Matsubara, Hideaki Nitani, Eimei Esumi | Written by Yasunori Kawauchi | Directed by Seijun Suzuki It would be easy to assume that Seijun Suzuki’s 1966 crime thriller is a construct of a TV series. With its strictly-defined three-act structure, divided by subtitles, it has the feel of a succession […]

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