Tag Archive for French

AMOUR (DVD Review)

Amour DVD cover

AMOUR coming to DVD and Blu-Ray from Sony Pictures Classics on 8/20

Chances are, if you saunter into the local multiplex on any given weekend, you’ll find a schmaltzy romance engineered to raise the expectations of women everywhere.  Films where young, good-looking couples overcome the odds to find their “happily ever after”.  Of course, every now and then, a filmmaker might throw a wrinkle into the formula to keep things fresh.  But sometimes, if you’re a director like Michael Haneke, you obliterate the formula, fast-forward 50 years and take a hard, unflinching look at that couple’s unhappy ending.  You might even christen the film something ironically generic, like Amour. Read more

Rust and Bone (DVD Review)

RUST AND BONE available 3/19 on DVD and Blu-Ray from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

RUST AND BONE available 3/19 on DVD and Blu-Ray from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

In 2009, French writer-director Jacques Audiard made “A Prophet”, a prison drama about an incarcerated Arab man who becomes a crime boss.  The film was well received the world over, even getting nominated for “Best Foreign Language Film” at the 2010 Academy Awards.  His follow up film, “Rust and Bone”, based on a collection of short stories by Canadian author Craig Davidson  was equally adored.  The film won two BAFTAS and nine Cesar’s and has helped to cement Audiard’s reputation as a filmmaker with cross-Atlantic appeal.  On March 19th, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment brings “Rust and Bone” to DVD and Blu-Ray.  Just don’t expect the feel-good movie of the season;  this is a pretty twisted tale. Read more

The Intouchables (DVD review)

Intouchables DVD

THE INTOUCHABLES available 3/5 on DVD and Blu-Ray from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Here’s something worth thinking about:  In 2012 “Cloud Atlas” was released in 2,032 theaters across America. Starring some of the biggest names in Hollywood, it only grossed $27 million domestically ($87 million foreign).  Nobody saw it and yet everybody knew about it.  The same year,  ”The Intouchables” grossed over $10 million in only 194 theaters, domestically.  Its foreign tally was over (brace yourself) $416 million – making it the most successful foreign language film in North America that year.   Everybody saw it, yet nobody here seemed to know about it.  Even when I tell people about it, they think I’m screwing up the name of that Brian DePalma movie.  Sadly, foreign language films typically get limited releases in the States, leaving many of us in the dark as to what’s being produced overseas.  Well fortunately, there’s a chance to rectify this.  On March 5th, “The Intouchables” comes to DVD and Blu-Ray courtesy of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment and it’s easy to see why it did so well both critically and commercially without the glamour of big names or a multi-million dollar budget. Read more

Chicken With Plums (DVD Review)

Chicken with Plums cover

CHICKEN WITH PLUMS available on DVD 2/26 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

I’m finding that quirky festival films from France are all looking the same. Like how all Subways smell the same, French films that are fanciful and whimsical also, weirdly, all have a similar kind of visual and narrative vibe. I don’t know what it is exactly, maybe because they are all influenced by their popular movie exports like Besson, Jeunet and the French new wave, but sitting down for Chicken With Plums felt very familiar. Not that that’s a bad thing, these Frenchy films are usually worth your time, it’s just that for a film about a violinist from Tehran, it’s pretty damn French. Read more