Ugetsu 11/08/05 $39.95
|The great Japanese director Kenji Mizoguchi draws on sources from both East and West for this, his crowning achievement. Set in sixteenth-century Japan, a period of bloody civil war, the film is equally rooted in the postwar psyche of 1950s Japan. Focusing on an ambitious potter haunted by a beautiful ghost and a farmer who dreams of becoming a samurai, the film offers a commentary on the delusions of lust and power, the folly of war, and the stoic suffering of women. Renowned cinematographer Kazuo Miyagawa helps Mizoguchi seamlessly interweave the supernatural with reality, resulting in one of the most beautiful films of all time. |
Criterion's double-disc edition will feature audio commentary by critic Tony Rayns, a two-and-a-half hour documentary on Mizoguchi by Kaneto Shindo, a new interview with director Masahiro Shinoda on the film, new interviews with first assistant director Tokuzo Tanaka and Miyagawa on their work on the film, trailers, a booklet featuring the original stories on which the film was based, and more.
Ran 11/22/05 $39.95
|Legendary director Akira Kurosawa re-imagines Shakespeare's tragic King Lear as a singular historical epic set in sixteenth-century Japan. Tatsuya Nakadai (The Sword of Doom, Kagemusha) stars as Lord Hidetora, a warlord who cedes authority over his vast dominion to his eldest son, setting off a familial power struggle for control of his kingdom. Majestic in scope, Ran is a visual masterpiece in which Kurosawa contrasts the immensity of war with the crumbling of one family under the weight of betrayal, greed, and the insatiable thirst for power. |
Criterion's magnificent two-disc edition will include not only a newly-restored transfer, but also A.K., Chris Marker's 74-minute documentary on Kurosawa's craft in making the film; an introduction by filmmaker Sidney Lumet; a half-hour Toho documentary on the making of the film; a half-hour video piece reconstructing the film through Kurosawa's paintings and sketches; a new interview with star Tatsuya Nakadai; and more.
Tales of Hoffmann 11/22/05 $39.95
|In Jacques Offenbach's fantasy opera, the poet E.T.A. Hoffmann dreams of three women - a mechanical performing doll, a bejeweled siren who steals his reflection, and the consumptive daughter of a famous composer - all of whom break his heart in different ways. Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger create a phantasmagoric marriage of cinema and opera in their one-of-a-kind take on this classic story. Feverishly romantic, The Tales of Hoffmann is a feast of music, dance, and visual effects - one of the most exhilarating film adaptations of an opera ever produced. |
Criterion's long-awaited DVD (one of our most requested titles) will feature audio commentary by Martin Scorsese & film historian Bruce Eder, a new introduction to the film by director and fan George A. Romero, Michael Powell's short musical film The Sorcerer's Apprentice, a rare collection of production design sketches and paintings, the trailer, and more.