get yr release on

Methinks the words "happy" and "together" don't exactly mean what they usually mean in a Wong Kar-Wai movie.

Jai ho, DVD releases for the week of 3/31/09!

Region 1 and other U.S. releases:
- Biker Triple Mania!
- Bollywood Horror Collection Vol. 2
- Cat in the Brain (dir. Lucio Fulci)
- Crazy Animal (a Troma Films release)
- The Cremator (dir. Juraj Herz)
- Christina Lindberg: Exposed
- Crows Zero (dir. Takashi Miike)
- Cthulhu
- Danton- Criterion Collection (dir. Andrzej Wajda)
- Experiments in Terror 3 (includes films by Guy Maddin and others)
- Fallen Angels (dir. Wong Kar-Wai)
- Fatty Girl Goes to New York (starring Anita Ekberg)
- Film Noir Double Feature Vol. 3: Amazing Mr. X & Reign of Terror
- Fugitive Girls
- Happy Together (dir. Wong Kar-Wai)
- Holding Trevor
- Il Generale Della Rovere- Criterion Collection (dir. Roberto Rossellini)
- Isle of the Damned
- Marley & Me
- Martial Club (starring Gordon Liu)
- No Regret
- Poultrygeist (2 DVD edition)
- Raven
- The Same Old Song (dir. Alain Resnais)
- Seven Pounds
- Sinful Dwarf
- Slumdog Millionaire
- Star of David: Hunting for Beautiful Girls (dir. Norifumi Suzuki)
- Tell No One
- Terror Circus a.k.a Barn of the Naked Dead (dir. Alan Rudolph)
- The 3 Faces of Shinji Aoyama
- 3 Films by Alexander Sokurov: Oriental Elegy; Dolce; Humble Life
- Timecrimes
- Tokyo Zombie (starring Tadanobu Asano)
- Un Chant D’Amour (directed by Jean Genet) (reissue)
- William Eggleston: Photographer

US Blu-Ray:
- An American In Paris
- Chronicles of Riddick
- Ghosts of Mars (dir. John Carpenter)
- Gigi
- The Matrix (10th Anniversary edition)
- The One (starring Jet Li)
- Slumdog Millionaire
- South Pacific
- Tell No One
- Two Evil Eyes (directed by George A. Romero and Dario Argento)

Multi-region and other foreign DVDs:
- Celia (Dir. Ann Turner)- UK Region 2 PAL
- The Children- UK Region 2 PAL
- Choking Man- UK Region 2 PAL
- Detroit Metal City- Hong Kong Region 3
- Derek (doc about Derek Jarman, narrated by Tilda Swinton)- UK Region 2 PAL
- Escapees- UK Region 2 PAL
- Forever Enthralled (dir. Chen Kaige)- Hong Kong Region 3
- Gomorrah- UK Region 2 PAL
- Mandate- Southeast Asia Region 3
- Muriel, ou le Temps d'un retour (dir. Alain Resnais)- UK Region 2 PAL
- Nighthawks/Strip Jack Naked - Nighthawks 2 (dir. Ron Peck)- UK Region 2 PAL
- Not Quite Hollywood- UK Region 2 PAL
- Rivals- UK Region 2 PAL
- Rouge: Digitally Remastered (dir. Stanley Kwan)- Hong Kong Region 3
- Red Cliff 2: 2-Disc Edition (dir. John Woo)- Hong Kong Region 3
- A Time To Love and a Time To Die (Dir. Douglas Sirk)- UK Region 2 PAL
- Trail Of The Lonesome Pine (dir. Henry Hathaway, starring Henry Fonda)- UK Region 2 PAL
- Waltz with Bashir- UK Region 2 PAL
- The Wild Geese- UK Region 2 PAL

Dex on Slumdog Millionaire:
That the guy who helped make Irvine Welsh an international phenomenon jumped up and down like Tigger when he won the Oscar for best director makes me very happy; that it was for a Stay-Puft piece of nonsense like this does not. You can also feel Patrick's hate here.

Pike's DVD round-up: This is a big week for DVD releases so I'm want to quickly spotlight some of the interesting genre and foreign film releases that deserve more recognition than more widely known faux-Hindi crapfest above. First we have some real Hindi films coming out (albeit from the trashier side of the spectrum) with The Bollywood Horror Collection Vol. 2 offering up The Ramsey Brothers' Veerana and Purani Haveli in one set. Supposedly Veerana is the choice cut for fans of the fantastique as it is a Bava-esque gothic horror story about a resurrected witch, but transplanted to the rural plantations of India. Also out this week, from the seamier side of the film world, comes Lucio Fulci's self-reflexive gross-out picture Cat in the Brain from 1990, which beat Craven's New Nightmare and Scream to the meta-party by four years. Both Christina Lindberg (Thriller: A Cruel Picture) and Anita Ekberg (French Sex Murders and something called La Dolce Vita) have exploitation films premiering in region 1. Lindberg's Exposed (out from Synapse) is a sexploitation number about young Miss Lindberg being blackmailed by her older, sexually controlling lover who has compromising pictures of her. Fatty Girl Goes to New York is a comedy staring Italian pop singer Donatella Rettore as a plump ugly-duckling type that gets her sweet revenge against all of the meanies in her life thanks to Baroness Judith von Kemp's (Ekberg) secret slimming elixir. As for the cream of the crop (or bottom of the barrel, depending on how you look at exploitation cinema), we get two notoriously vile pieces of work this week with The Sinful Dwarf and Star of David: Hunting Beautiful Girls. The Sinful Dwarf is exactly what you think it is- a wee little pervert locks-up teen girls for forced fun in his mom's house (with her consent of course) while she sings dance hall numbers dressed-up like Carmen Miranda! Seedy stuff for sure but Star of David might have it beat. It is the only roman porno under the Nikkatsu banner that Norifumi Suzuki directed and is considered one of his best films. It centers on a young man who was conceived during a horrible home invasion incident where an escaped serial rapist took advantage of his mother and made his stepfather watch. Now on the verge of inheriting his stepfather's estate, he decides to get in touch with his biological family traditions! Beautifully shot, this film is like the completely irresponsible cousin of Imamura's Vengeance is Mine.

Getting out of the gutter for a minute, we also have some great art-house and studio fare coming out this week. Aside from the two Criterion Collection discs, we also get two massively cleaned up Wong Kar-Wai films with Fallen Angels and Happy Together. The transfers on these discs are amazing and make the old discs obsolete. The Happy Together transfer was taken from the new UK Artificial Eye transfer and you can check out difference at DVD Beaver. Also this week, we have an Alexander Sokurov box of short films that documents his work in Japan and a Czech new-wave film titled The Cremator. It is strange little film about a middleclass man who, with ever increasing delusions of grandeur, slips seamlessly into the Nazi Party line during Hitler's takeover of Czechoslovakia. Amber has pointed out that Lars von Trier's Europa has lifted elements from this film as I see a very definite influence on Lynch's Eraserhead. The Film Noir Double Feature Vol. 3 features two films shot by one of the masters of noir cinematography, John Alton. The first feature, Reign of Terror (directed by Anthony Mann), is an oddly compelling mix of film noir, camp and raw violence packaged as a French Revolution-type period piece. The other film, The Amazing Mr. X is a more conventional crime picture about a phony spiritualist/confidence artist, but is fun in its own right and looks fantastic. Finally, on the domestic front, Alain Resnais' delightful little romp through Dennis Potter's (The BBC serials The Singing Detective, Pennies from Heaven) garden, The Same Old Song (On connaƮt la chanson) is out for those enjoy the Gallic charms found in Resnais' late period work (also check it out if you enjoy the films of Demy, Varda, Chabrol and the like).

On the multi-region front, we have a slew of treats coming our way this week. From Asia we get subtitled discs of both John Woo's newest film Red Cliff 2 (which is the second half of his Han Dynasty epic starring Tony Leung Chiu-wai) and Chen Kaige's latest Beijing opera melodrama, Forever Enthralled staring Leon Lai and Zhang Ziyi. We also get a re-release/digital clean-up of Stanley Kwan's great little love/double suicide/ghost story, Rouge, starring the late Hong Kong stars Leslie Cheung and Anita Mui. From over in the UK comes the Documentary Derek, put out last year by his friends Isaac Julien and Tilda Swinton. Here is an interview with Julien and Swinton from the Sundance channel that will give you a feel for the film. Also out is Ron Peck's Nighthawks packaged with the documentary about its making titled Strip Jack Naked: Nighthawks II. I guess you could say that this DVD is also Jarman related as he has a small role in Nighthawks. Also coming out is Not Quite Hollywood, the documentary about the Australian exploitation boom of the 70s. If you are going to watch this film, do it with pen and paper in hand because it covers a lot of films that you'll probably want to look into. Finally, the three films I'm most looking forward to getting this week are also UK releases: Alain Resnais' fantastic third feature Muriel, ou le Temps d'un retour, Douglas Sirk's A Time to Love and a Time to Die and Ann Turner's creepy girl-coming-of-age film, Celia. I have these on order and will do a proper review of each in the weeks to come.

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