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A few words about...™ El Topo & The Holy Mountain -- in Blu-ray

A Few Words About

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#1 of 7 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted April 14 2011 - 11:46 AM

For transparency's sake, I am not now, nor have I ever been a fan of the work of Alejandro Jodorowsky.


I viewed both El Topo and Holy Mountain in theaters at the time of their release, and found neither appealing.  I'm more of an old world, the script, the script, the script kind of cinephile.


That said, those who do pray at the Jodorowsky shine, and who have never really had anything near reference quality, may now find solace, as the two new Blu-rays from Anchor Bay should get that adrenaline going.


Both films, El Topo in 1.37, and Holy Mountain in scope, are more than acceptable, know the history.  An occasional emulsion scratch, a bit of digititis, are all forgivable on these films, as for all intents and purposes, both are fine.  While they may not look precisely like film, they're far better than I would have expected, and to be totally fair, we have no idea what film elements are available to the distributor.


Not for all tastes, especially if one happens to be a member of the clergy, or offended by most anything, these are cult films that have made their way to us via the time machine of the early '70s.


Fans will be thrilled.


RAH




"All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did." T.E. Lawrence


#2 of 7 OFFLINE   Vincent_P

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Posted April 15 2011 - 07:07 AM

Robert,


Have you seen SANTA SANGRE?  While still dripping with Jodorowsky's trademark brand of surrealism, it has a much more straight-forward storyline than either of these earlier films.  It's one of my favorite films of the 1990s.


Vincent



#3 of 7 OFFLINE   Bob Cashill

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Posted April 15 2011 - 09:11 AM

"It's one of my favorite films of the 1990s"--Mine, too! The Severin disc is excellent.



#4 of 7 OFFLINE   Professor Echo

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Posted April 15 2011 - 10:23 AM



Originally Posted by Robert Harris 

For transparency's sake, I am not now, nor have I ever been a fan of the work of Alejandro Jodorowsky.


RAH



Anyone who loves comic books can't be all bad.


On the other hand, anyone who has nothing but elitist disdain for comic books (e.g. Sam Mendes) can be all bad.




#5 of 7 OFFLINE   Robert Harris

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Posted April 15 2011 - 11:13 AM

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"All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did." T.E. Lawrence


#6 of 7 OFFLINE   Brian Borst

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Posted April 17 2011 - 08:36 AM



Originally Posted by Professor Echo 



Anyone who loves comic books can't be all bad.


On the other hand, anyone who has nothing but elitist disdain for comic books (e.g. Sam Mendes) can be all bad.




What do you mean by that? Road to Perdition was based on a comic, and Mendes certainly knew that as well.


Never go out with anyone who thinks Fellini is a type of cheese

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#7 of 7 OFFLINE   Phoebus

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Posted April 21 2011 - 10:04 PM

Reviews are saying that the disc is Region A locked.

It seems such a shame when this is done to blu-rays of older movies.  Particularly so in this case as Holy Mountain has been deleted as a uk zone 2 dvd/boxset.


I saw a midnight movie restored print of this at a film festival several years ago.  Not a full house, and mostly an older audience.


It seems that Jodorowsky has been off the cult midnight movie circuit for too many decades to have built up much of a fan base.  Thirty-odd years of being withdrawn has led to a relatively forgotten status.

There's a lot to enjoy about Holy Mountain, in particular, although it is a creature of its time in many ways.

El Topo has even been broadcast by the BBC when the BBC could be better relied upon to ferret out the bold foreign and cult movies of other decades.  I taped it - it had a five minute or so scholarly introduction.  we dont get the five minute scholarly intros these days either.. :-(  anyway, El Topo is the sort of movie I watch in segments rather than all at once - too indigestive for me all at once.