This month goes primarily to films not yet seen, one domestic and one foreign. However, the third film is the one that has me extremely excited. A film that is quintessentially ’70s era, but at the same time unlike anything you’ve seen before. Can you guess what film has me so wound up?
Release Date: 2012, April 17th (Blu-Ray, Spine #609)
¡ALAMBRISTA! (1977) a film I know almost nothing about, except for what I have included right here. For that reason alone, I am intrigued, but add to that the fact it’s a Camera d’Or winner and a very contemporary story relevant to current politics and social dialogue, and the film leaps onto my must-see list.
SYNOPSIS: In ¡Alambrista!, a farmworker sneaks across the border from Mexico into California in an effort to make money to send to his family back home. It is a story that happens every day, told here in an uncompromising, groundbreaking work of realism from American independent filmmaker Robert M. Young. Vivid and spare where other films about illegal immigration might sentimentalize, Young’s take on the subject is equal parts intimate character study and gripping road movie, a political work that never loses sight of the complex man at its center. ¡Alambrista!, winner of the Cannes Film Festival’s inaugural Camera d’Or in 1978, remains one of the best films ever made on this perennially relevant topic. — Criterion.com
Release Date: 2012, April 17th (Blu-Ray, Spine #331)
LATE SPRING (1949) is a film that, despite having been a staple of Criterion collectors for some time now, I have yet to see. And, because of that and all the love the film gets from said collectors, I am eager to finally see the film in all it’s black and white glory through the beauty of blu-ray.
SYNOPSIS: One of the most powerful of the family portraits by Yasujiro Ozu, Late Spring tells the story of a widowed father who feels compelled to marry off his beloved only daughter. Eminent Ozu players Chishu Ryu and Setsuko Hara command this poignant tale of love and loss in postwar Japan, which remains as potent today as ever—and as strong a justification for its maker’s inclusion in the pantheon of cinema’s greatest directors. — Criterion.com
Release Date: 2012, April 17th (Blu-Ray, Spine #608)
HAROLD AND MAUDE (1971) is one of those rare gems, an odd quirky classic of obscure cinema. It tells a wonderfully beautiful story that defies social norms, fitting perfectly within the ranks of the -70s best film fare.
SYNOPSIS: With the idiosyncratic American fable Harold and Maude, countercultural director Hal Ashby fashioned what would become the cult classic of its era. Working from a script by Colin Higgins, Ashby tells the story of the emotional and romantic bond between a death-obsessed young man (Bud Cort) from a wealthy family and a devil-may-care, bohemian octogenarian (Ruth Gordon). Equal parts gallows humor and romantic innocence, Harold and Maude dissolves the line between darkness and light along with the ones that separate people by class, gender, and age, and it features indelible performances and a remarkable soundtrack by Cat Stevens. — Criterion.com