THE WEEK OF JUNE 9th, 2009



GRAN TORINO

Special Features

  • Trailer
  • Featurettes


Gran Torino
is such a great movie. Too many people kept wanting to read the film as something other than what it was. It was either Eastwood’s ode to violence, a comedic parody of his Dirty Harry days or a film that’s laughably out of touch with the modern era. Everybody had their take and no one wanted to see it get honored at the Academy Awards.

On home video and getting further away from the excessive scrutiny, I welcome the chance for a re-evaluation of Eastwood’s latest. Gran Torino is a redemptive tale. The overwrought environmentally developed racist coming to terms with a society that has mutated out of his control. The rules have changes, the faces have changed and the landscape is collapsing. But, he remains and stares at the sun setting on the last embers of his life. If you do anything this week, make sure to pick this film up.



THE INTERNATIONAL

Special Features

  • Director’s Commentary
  • Featurettes
  • Deleted Scenes


The International only caught my attention because I saw it with my racist movie buddy. He thinks that everyone’s out to get him, so this film was perfection. There’s a certain irony not lost on the public about a film from a German director about evil ethnic bankers trying to control the world. You can even play a drinking game while viewing the film. Whenever the film borders on a vague Anti-Semetic bent, take a drink. By the end of the film, you’ll either have alcohol poisoning or you’ll be enrolled at Dartmouth.




NOBEL SON

Special Features

  • Commentary with director/producer Randall Miller, writer/producer
    Jody Savin, musician Paul Oakenfold, cinematographer Mike Ozier and
    actors Brian Greenberg and Eliza Dushku.
  • Deleted scenes with optional commentary from director/producer Randall Miller and writer/producer Jody Savin
  • Alternate ending sequence


Nobel Son is
an interesting mess of a film. The film’s score is made up of house music, which seems to be imply a certain demand of the drug imbibing audience. Alan Rickman is serviceable as the highly respect chemist father of a college-aged fuckwit. The aforementioned fuckwit goes missing on the eve of Rickman’s Nobel Prize win. The abductors want the two million dollar prize money that Rickman will win. This leads to hi-jinks and no nude scenes from Eliza Dushku.

THE PERSONAL CRITERION COLLECTION




I had an idea for a subset column for The Special Edition. Many people
want to have Criterions in their collection. Many people pretend to
like half of the films that Criterion releases. But, what about those
people that honestly can’t be bothered to be told what to like. What
about them?

That’s why I want to test the waters and see if
this floats. I want the readers of CHUD and this dear article to head
to the Boards and nominate their Personal Criterion Collection entry. I
want to see explanations and not just mindless listing of entries,
people.

All titles eligible are previously released DVD/BR media that you believe to be essential/necessary to the collection of the Home Entertainment enthusiast.

THE FIRST ENTRIES

1. The Fountain

2. Videodrome


3. Seven Men from Now


4. Stalker


5. The Last Days of Disco
6. Paris, Texas
7. Vanishing Point
8. The Stunt Man
9. The Deer Hunter
10. The Third Man
11. Southland Tales
12. Head
13. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg
14. Sorcerer
15. Henry V (1989)
16. The Great White Hope
17. Fixed Bayonets
18. Dracula: Pages from a Virgin’s Diary
19. The Ballad of Cable Hogue
20. Gates of Heaven
21. The Dirty Dozen
22. Opening Night
23. Birdman of Alcatraz
24. Elmer Gantry
25. The Band Wagon
26. Five Guns West
27. Detour
28. Jubal
29. Affair in Trinidad
30) Experiment in Terror
31) Seconds
32) Coffy
33) 1984
34) Special
35) Talking Heads: Stop Making Sense
36) The Fortune Cookie
37) Executive Suite
38) Two People
39) The Sand Pebbles
40) The Iron Horse
41) Watermelon Man
42) The Girl Can’t Help It
43) Diner
44) Rumble Fish
45) Pale Rider
46) High Plains Drifter
47) Lady Snowblood
48) Help
49) The Bank Job
50) The Hudsucker Proxy
51) Tommy
52) The Pawnbroker
53) Imitation of Life (1959)
54) Desperate Living
55) In Harm’s Way
56) The Dam Busters
57) The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant
58) Blood and Lace
59) Two-Lane Blacktop
60) Saint Jack
61) Saaraba
62) Meet the Feebles
63) Bob Roberts
64) Love Streams
65) Barfly
66) Billy Jack
67) Shock Corridor
68) Jason and the Argonauts
69) Curse of the Demon
70) Basket Case
71) Searching for Bobby Fisher
72) Safe
73) Deep Cover
74) Blow Out
75) The Mission (Johnny To)
76) Fresh
77) The Glass Shield
78) Dolls
79) He Got Game
80) King Rat
81) Zabriskie Point
82) Belle du Jour
83) Johnny Guitar
84) Inserts
85)
The 36th Chamber of Shao-Lin
86) Tigerland
87) Duel
88) Last Train from Gun Hill
89) Cross Creek
90) The Last Detail
91) Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence
92) George Washington
93) Johnny Belinda
94) Battleground
95) The Five Deadly Venoms
96) A Christmas Carol (1951)
97) Twin Falls, Idaho
98) Even Hitler Had a Girlfriend
99) Liquid Sky 

and today’s entry suggested by Judas Booth.






100) Rollerball. (click on the box art to buy it at Amazon)

On the surface, this appears to be just another action movie set in the
future: athletes compete in a sport that’s essentially a hyperviolent
version of rollerderby and motorcross.



It’s much more than that, though. It’s an exploration of a future
corporate society (a futuristic Roman Empire, if you will) that now
controls the world (we’re now the Corporate States of America). The
game of Rollerball is a futuristic version of the gladiatorial games: a
distraction for the masses to rally around; a means of getting past
their banal lives.



The film revolves around a Rollerball Champion named Jonathan E (James
Caan) who is facing extreme pressure to retire. He’s being offered
everything that a man could want in order to do so, and he really
doesn’t understand why. He doesn’t want to, angering the corporate
leaders who don’t want a single individual to become THAT popular. The
individual must be kept down. As Jonathan digs deeper into the truth,
the corporate heads conspire to FORCE him to retire; indeed if he won’t
quit, they’ll make the game so violent that he’ll get killed. This
results in a final game that has no rules: pure anarchy and ultra
violence.



The film has been cited for getting many elements of future society right:

– the prominence of corporations

– the obscene celebrity of sports figures

– the prominence of violence in sports



The use of music in this film is stunning. You’ll never be able to hear
‘Toccata and Fugue in D Minor’ without thinking of ‘Rollerball’.



I’d like to think that Criterion would do some incredible supplemental
material for this film. A documentary examining how many predictions of
the future have come true would be very interesting.


HERE’S THE LINK TO NOMINATE MORE TITLES.


EVERYTHING ELSE THAT’S AVAILABLE ON DVD

  • Chariots Of The Gods/The Outer Space Connection (Double Feature)
  • The Cleaner: The First Season
  • Crossing Over
  • Destination Fame
  • Father Knows Best: Season Three
  • Fired Up (Theatrical Edition)
  • Fired Up (Unrated Edition)
  • Gran Torino
  • In Love We Trust
  • The International
  • The Jack Lemmon Film Collection
  • Last Of The Summer Wine: Vintage 1979
  • The Norman Lear Collection
  • Open All Hours: The Complete Series
  • Perry Mason: Season Four, Vol. 1
  • Reaper: Season Two
  • RetarDEAD
  • The Shield: The Complete Seventh Season
  • Spinning Into Butter
  • Strike
  • Time Warp: Season One
  • Zane Grey Theatre: Complete Season One

 
BLU-RAY: THE DISC THAT WALKS LIKE A MAN

  • Fatal Attraction
  • Fired Up (Includes Unrated Edition And Theatrical Edition)
  • Gran Torino
  • Home: A Stunning Visual Portrayal Of Earth
  • Indecent Proposal
  • The International
  • Predator 2
  • The Siege
  • Time Warp: Season One
SPEND YOUR MONEY!




NEW RELEASES



*Blu-Ray prices are in BOLD BLUE


Gran Torino $15.99         $24.99

Fired Up!  $19.99

The International  $15.99  $26.99

The Shield Season 7  $36.99

Get Smart Season 3  $16.99

Woodstock  $16.99  $42.99 (Collector’s Edition DVD) $49.99





TV on DVD Sale


Two & A Half Men Seasons 1 – 4 $18.99

Entourage Seasons 1 – 4 $18.99

The Tudors Seasons 1 or 2 $18.99

Dexter Seasons 1 – 2 $18.99

Mad Men Season 1 $18.99

30 Rock Season 2 $18.99

The Big Bang Theory Season 1 $13.99

The Simpsons Season 10 $13.99

Seinfeld Seasons 1 & 2 – 9 $13.99

Psych Seasons 1 or 2 $13.99

Weeds Seasons 1 – 3 $13.99

It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia Seasons 1 & 2 or 3 $13.99





———————————————–







NEW RELEASES

*Blu-Ray prices are in BOLD BLUE


Gran Torino $15.99    $25.99

The International  $17.99    $26.99

Macho Madness: The Randy Savage Collection  $17.99

Fired Up Unrated $19.99       $26.99

The Shield Season 7    $36.99

Woodstock 40th Anniversary Deluxe $42.99      $49.99
Crossing Over  $14.99

Reaper Season 2  $29.99



$6.99

You Don’t Mess With The Zohan Unrated

Flags Of Our Fathers

Kill Bill Volume 1

Charlie Wilson’s War

Family Guy: Blue Harvest

The Departed

$12.99  TV on DVD



The Simpsons   Seasons 1 – 11

Prison Break Seasons 1 – 3

Boston Legal Seasons 1 – 4

It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia Seasons 1 – 3

Family Guy Seasons 1 – 6

The Unit Seasons 1 – 3

Burn Notice Season 1

How I Met Your Mother Seasons 1 – 3

Arrested Development Seasons 1 – 2

My Name Is Earl Seasons 1 – 3