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Wes Anderson’s hilarious, touching, and brilliantly stylized study of melancholy and redemption centers around a dysfunctional family of geniuses.
A riveting psychological thriller that investigates the nature of truth and the meaning of justice Rashomon is widely considered one of the greatest films ever made.
Sunday Bloody Sunday depicts the romantic lives of two Londoners, a middle-aged doctor and a prickly thirtysomething divorcée—played with great sensitivity by Peter Finch and Glenda Jackson—who are sleeping with the same handsome young artist.
The Who’s classic rock opera Quadrophenia was the basis for this invigorating coming-of-age movie and depiction of the defiant, drug-fueled mod subculture of early 1960s London.
This scathing late-sixties satire from Jean-Luc Godard is one of cinema’s great anarchic works. Determined to collect an inheritance from a dying relative, a bourgeois couple travel across the French countryside while civilization crashes and burns around them.
Rarely has a film been as honest about sexuality—in both depiction and discussion—as this tale of a one-night stand that develops into a weekend-long idyll for two very different young men (exciting screen newcomers Tom Cullen and Chris New) in the English Midlands.
Max Ophuls brings his astonishing visual dexterity and storytelling bravura to this triptych of tales by Guy de Maupassant about the limits of spiritual and physical pleasure.
I Am Curious—Yellow, one of the most controversial films of all time, is presented here for the first time with its companion piece, I Am Curious—Blue. This landmark document of Swedish society during the sexual revolution has been declared both obscene and revolutionary.
What does the energy harnessed through orgasm have to do with the state of communist Yugoslavia circa 1971? Only counterculture filmmaker extraordinaire Dušan Makavejev has the answers (or the questions) in his surreal documentary-fiction collision WR: Mysteries of the Organism.
Vienna-born, New York–raised Josef von Sternberg directed some of the most influential, extraordinarily stylish dramas ever to come out of Hollywood. The titles in this collection, made on the cusp of the sound age, are three of Sternberg’s greatest works.
In Pietro Germi’s hilarious and cutting satire of Sicilian male-chauvinist culture, Baron Ferdinando Cefalù (Marcello Mastroianni) longs to marry his nubile young cousin Angela (Stefania Sandrelli), but one obstacle stands in his way: his fatuous and fawning wife, Rosalia (Daniela Rocca).
Shotgun weddings, kidnapping, attempted murder, emergency dental work—the things Don Vincenzo will do to restore his family’s honor! Pietro Germi’s Seduced and Abandoned was the follow-up to his sensation Divorce Italian Style, and in many ways it’s even more audacious.
rvbranham: “seamless laminate of hilarious screwball & scary noir. melanie griffith, jeff daniels & ray liotta are a great ens. & the feelies give a gym concert!”
The Small Back Room details the travails of troubled research scientist and military bomb-disposal expert Sammy Rice, who, while struggling with a complex relationship with secretary girlfriend Susan, is hired by the government to advise on a dangerous new German weapon.
Anthony Hopkins’s Hannibal Lecter matches wits with Jodie Foster’s heroic FBI agent Clarice Starling in Jonathan Demme’s taut psychological thriller.
Starring Jack Lemmon and Sissy Spacek, Missing is political filmmaker extraordinaire Costa-Gavras’s compelling, controversial dramatization of the search for American filmmaker and journalist Charles Horman, who mysteriously disappeared during the 1973 coup in Chile.
Four Oscar–winning actors—Marlon Brando, Anna Magnani, Joanne Woodward, and Maureen Stapleton—sink their teeth into this enthralling film, which brings together the legendary talents of director Sidney Lumet and writer Tennessee Williams.
At his secluded chateau in the French countryside, a brilliant, obsessive doctor (Pierre Brasseur) attempts a radical plastic surgery to restore the beauty of his daughter’s disfigured countenance—at a horrifying price.
With its lewd abandon and sketch-comedy perversity, Makavejev’s cult staple Sweet Movie is a full-throated shriek in the face of bourgeois complacency and movie watching.
Robinson Crusoe on Mars tells the story of U.S. astronaut Commander “Kit” Draper (Paul Mantee), who must fight for survival when his spaceship crash-lands on the barren waste of Mars, a pet monkey his only companion.
With the three films in this set, Shoehi Imamura, one of the leading figures of the Japanese new wave, truly emerged as an auteur, bringing to his national cinema an anthropological eye and a heretofore unseen taste for the irreverent.
In Liliana Cavani’s scintillating drama, a concentration camp survivor (Charlotte Rampling) discovers her ex-torturer/lover (Dirk Bogarde) working as a night porter at a hotel in postwar Vienna.
Robert Flaherty’s classic film tells the story of Inuit hunter Nanook and his family as they struggle to survive in the harsh conditions of Canada’s Hudson Bay region.
rvbranham: “great to see how renoir & kurosawa make such great & completely different movies fr.the same source mat'l—great dbl-disc) jean gabin+toshiro mifune!”
A mysterious writer of poison-pen letters plagues a French provincial town, unwittingly exposing the collective suspicion and rancor seething beneath the community’s calm surface.
In this poetic and atmospheric horror fable, set in a village in war-torn medieval Japan, a malevolent spirit has been ripping out the throats of itinerant samurai. Onibaba, Kuroneko (Black Cat) is a spectacularly eerie twilight tale.
rvbranham: “i've got a crappy edition & would do a hit job for this edition”
Tatsuya Nakadai and Toshiro Mifune star in the story of a wandering samurai who exists in a maelstrom of violence. A gifted swordsman—plying his trade during the turbulent final days of Shogunate rule—Ryunosuke kills without remorse, without mercy. It’s a way of life that leads to madness.
A young man begins an obsessive search for his girlfriend after she mysteriously disappears during their sunny vacation getaway. The Vanishing unfolds with intense precision, culminating in a genuinely chilling finale that has unnerved audiences around the world.
rvbranham: “not a fan at all of through a glass darkly or winter light, but i love the silence & wld buy the box for that one alone...”
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Following the collapse of his clan, unemployed samurai Hanshiro Tsugumo (Tatsuya Nakadai) arrives at the manor of Lord Iyi, begging to commit ritual suicide on his property in Masaki Kobayashi’s fierce evocation of individual agency in the face of a corrupt and hypocritical system.
In the thirties and forties, the young Indian actor known as Sabu (born Selar Shaik) captured the hearts of moviegoers in Britain and the United States as a completely new kind of big-screen icon.
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Koreyoshi Kurahara’s free-form approach to moviemaking was perfectly suited to the radical spirit of the 1960s, when he was one of the biggest hit makers working at the razzle-dazzle, youth-oriented Nikkatsu studios.
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A grown-up superhero fantasy come to vivid, bloody life, Paul Verhoeven’s special effects-laden cult phenomenon features a resurrected hero (Peter Weller) in a new, supercharged cyborg body, struggling to reclaim his memory and avenge his own death.
The acclaimed, best-selling novel by John le Carré, about a Cold War spy on one final dangerous mission in East Germany, is transmuted by director Martin Ritt into a film every bit as precise and ruthless as the book.
An inspired rendering of Jim Thompson’s pulp novel Pop. 1280, Bertrand Tavernier’s Coup de torchon (Clean Slate) deftly transplants the story of an inept police chief turned heartless killer and his scrappy mistress from the American South to French West Africa.
John Cassavetes was a genius, a visionary, and the progenitor of American independent film, but that doesn’t begin to get at the generosity of his art.
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Working outside the mainstream, the wildly prolific, visionary Stan Brakhage made more than 350 films over a half century. Challenging all taboos in his exploration of “birth, sex, death, and the search for God,” he turned his camera on explicit lovemaking, childbirth, even autopsy.
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One of the most scathing indictments of American culture ever produced by a Hollywood filmmaker, Billy Wilder’s Ace in the Hole stars Kirk Douglas as Chuck Tatum, an amoral newspaper reporter who happens upon the story of a lifetime—and will do anything to ensure he gets the scoop.
John Lurie knows absolutely nothing about fishing, but that doesn’t stop him from undertaking the adventure of a lifetime in Fishing with John. Featuring Jim Jarmusch, Willem Dafoe, and Tom Waits.
A low-key postpunk diary that took four years to complete, Allison Anders’ Border Radio features legendary rocker Chris D. as a singer/songwriter who has stolen loot from a club and gone missing, leaving his wife, a no-nonsense rock journalist, to track him down with the help of his friends.
In Paul Morrissey’s brash mixture of humor, horror, and sex, Blood for Dracula, the infamous count searches Italy for virgin blood.
In a revelatory film debut, the dynamic, fresh-faced Sandrine Bonnaire plays Suzanne, a fifteen-year-old Parisian who embarks on a sexual rampage in an effort to separate herself from her overbearing, beloved father. À nos amours is one of Maurice Pialat’s greatest achievements.
With An Angel at My Table, Academy Award–winning filmmaker Jane Campion brings to the screen the harrowing true-life story of Janet Frame, New Zealand’s most distinguished author. Angel beautifully captures the color and power of the New Zealand landscape.
The debut feature by the great Andrei Tarkovsky, Ivan’s Childhood is a poetic journey through the shards and shadows of one boy’s war-ravaged youth.
Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s controversial, fifteen-hour-plus epic follows the hulking, childlike ex-convict Franz Biberkopf (Günter Lamprecht) as he attempts to “become an honest soul” amid the corrosive urban landscape of Weimar-era Germany.
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Chow Yun-fat is jaded detective “Tequila” Yuen in John Woo’s dizzying odyssey through the world of Hong Kong Triads, undercover agents, and frenzied police raids; the brilliant, passionate Hard Boiled is violence as poetry, rendered by a master.
Gorgeously photographed to evoke the medieval paintings of Saint Francis’s time, and cast with monks from the Nocera Inferiore Monastery, Rossellini’s The Flowers of St. Francis is a timeless and moving portrait of the search for spiritual enlightenment.
With clarity, subtlety, and a dose of wicked humor, Academy Award–winning director Ang Lee renders Rick Moody’s acclaimed novel of upper-middle-class American malaise as a trenchant, tragic cinematic portrait of lost souls.
The most cherished work from French master Max Ophuls, The Earrings of Madame de . . . is a profoundly emotional, cinematographically adventurous tale of deceptive opulence and tragic romance.
rvbranham: “this one plays like chekhov (as do a lot of his movies), bittersweet funny sad or sadly funny... ozu always makes the domestic epic...”