Criterion’s April 2014 Titles

In slightly newer news, Criterion has recently released it’s scheduled titles for April:

The 400 Blows - Cover Art

The 400 Blows – April 8

The unforgettable debut feature by François Truffaut is a wrenchingly personal coming-of-age story that introduced the character that would become the director’s lifelong cinematic counterpart, Antoine Doinel (Jean-Pierre Léaud, in one of the screen’s great child performances). With the utmost sensitivity, The 400 Blows dramatizes the trials of Truffaut’s own difficult childhood, characterized by aloof parents, oppressive teachers, and petty crime. The film marks its maker’s official transition from influential critic to one of Europe’s most brilliant auteurs, and is considered the first true work of the French New Wave.

Special Features:

  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • New digital transfer of Antoine and Colette (The Adventures of Antoine Doinel box set only)
  • Two audio commentaries, one by cinema professor Brian Stonehill and another by François Truffaut’s lifelong friend Robert Lachenay
  • Rare audition footage of Jean-Pierre Léaud, Patrick Auffay, and Richard Kanayan
  • Newsreel footage of Jean-Pierre Léaud in Cannes for the showing of The 400 Blows
  • Excerpt from a French TV program with Truffaut discussing his youth, critical writings, and the origins of Antoine Doinel in The 400 Blows and Antoine and Colette
  • Television interview with Truffaut about the global reception of The 400 Blows and his own critical impression of the film
  • Theatrical trailer for The 400 Blows
  • PLUS: A new essay by film scholar Annette Insdorf

Breaking the Waves - Cover Art

Breaking the Waves – April 15

Lars von Trier became an international sensation with this galvanizing realist fable about sex and spiritual transcendence. Emily Watson stuns, in an Oscar-nominated performance, as Bess, a simple, pious newlywed in a tiny Scottish village who gives herself up to a shocking form of martyrdom after her husband (Stellan Skarsgård) is paralyzed in an oil-rig accident. Breaking the Waves, both brazen and tender, profane and pure, is an examination of the expansiveness of faith and of its limits.

Special Features:

  • New 4K digital restoration, with 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • Selected-scene audio commentary featuring director Lars von Trier, editor Anders Refn, and location scout Anthony Dod Mantle
  • New interview with filmmaker and critic Stig Björkman
  • New interviews with actors Emily Watson and Stellan Skarsgård
  • Interview from 2004 with actor Adrian Rawlins
  • Watson’s audition tape, with commentary by von Trier
  • Deleted and extended scenes, with commentary by von Trier
  • Deleted scene featuring the late actor Katrin Cartlidge
  • Cannes Film Festival promotional clip
  • Trailer
  • New English subtitle translation
  • One Blu-ray and two DVDs, with all content available in both formats
  • PLUS: An essay by critic David Sterritt

Master of the House - Cover Art

Master of the House – April 22

Before he got up close and personal with Joan of Arc, the Danish cinema genius Carl Theodor Dreyer fashioned this finely detailed, ahead-of-its-time examination of domestic life. In this heartfelt story of a housewife who, with the help of a wily nanny, turns the tables on her tyrannical husband, Dreyer finds lightness and humor; it’s a deft comedy of revenge that was an enormous box-office success and is considered an early example of feminism on-screen. Constructed with the director’s customary meticulousness and stirring sense of justice, Master of the House is a jewel of silent cinema.

Special Features:

  • New 2K digital restoration, with a recent score by Gillian Anderson, presented in uncompressed stereo on the Blu-ray
  • New interview with Dreyer historian Casper Tybjerg
  • New visual essay on Dreyer’s camera work and editing by film historian David Bordwell
  • New English intertitle translation
  • One Blu-ray and one DVD, with all content available in both formats
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film scholar Mark Le Fanu

Riot in Cell Block 11 - Cover Art

Riot in Cell Block 11 – April 22

Early in his career, Don Siegel made his mark with this sensational and high-octane but economically constructed drama set in a maximum-security penitentiary. Riot in Cell Block 11, the brainchild of producer extraordinaire Walter Wanger, is a ripped-from-the-headlines social-problem picture about prisoners’ rights that was inspired by a recent spate of uprisings in American prisons. In Siegel’s hands, the film is at once brash and humane, showcasing the hard-boiled visual flair and bold storytelling for which the director would become known and shot on location at Folsom State Prison, with real inmates and guards as extras.

Special Features:

  • New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New audio commentary by film scholar Matthew Bernstein
  • Excerpts from the director’s 1993 autobiography, A Siegel Film, read by his son Kristoffer Tabori
  • More!
  • One Blu-ray and one DVD, with all content available in both formats
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Chris Fujiwara, a 1954 article by coproducer Walter Wanger, and a 1974 tribute to Siegel by filmmaker Sam Peckinpah

Il Sorpasso - Cover Art

Il Sorpasso – April 29

The ultimate Italian road comedy, Il Sorpasso stars the unlikely pair of Vittorio Gassman and Jean-Louis Trintignant as, respectively, a waggish, free-wheeling bachelor and the bookish law student he takes on a madcap trip from Rome to rural Southern Italy. An unpredictable journey that careers from slapstick to tragedy, this film, directed by Dino Risi, is a wildly entertaining commentary on the pleasures and consequences of the good life. A holy grail of commedia all’italiana, Il Sorpasso is so fresh and exciting that one can easily see why it has long been adored in Italy.

Special Features:

  • New 2K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New interviews with screenwriter Ettore Scola and film scholar and professor Rémi Fournier Lanzoni
  • Interview from 2004 with director Dino Risi by film critic Jean A. Gili
  • Introduction by actor Jean-Louis Trintignant from a 1983 French television broadcast of the film
  • A Beautiful Vacation, a 2006 documentary on Risi featuring interviews with the director and his collaborators and friends
  • Excerpts from a 2012 documentary that returns to Castiglioncello, the location for the film’s beach scenes, featuring rare on-set color footage
  • Trailer
  • New English subtitle translation
  • One Blu-ray and two DVDs, with all content available in both formats
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring essays by critics Phillip Lopate and Antonio Monda, as well as excerpts from Risi’s writings, with an introduction by film critic Valerio Caprara
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s