Perhaps in the haze of the post-Oscar season, there wasn’t a lot of pressure to put out films on Blu-ray this week, but we are getting two of the best films of last year, and one of the Coen Brothers’ most underrated films (partly because it was a bomb on release).
Chasing Mavericks: Oh Gerard Butler. Hollywood has tried with you, but audiences haven’t been stoked to see you in anything after 300. This was one of two flops Butler had at the end of the year. This was the one about surfing. It will probably play cable in a loop in two years.
Holy Motors: One of my favorite films from last year, Holy Motors is cinema. It’s cinema trying and doing things you’ve never seen a movie do before. It’s funny and weird and engrossing, and nonsensical and brilliant and everything that movies can be. It’s cinema.
The Master: Is Paul Thomas Anderson’s latest film a masterpiece, or does it wear the clothes of a great film? It’s hard to say, so rewatching it repeatedly may be in order. Joaquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Amy Adams were all nominated for their work in the film, which should look gorgeous at home as it was partly shot on 70mm.
Chronicle of a Summer, Sansho the Bailiff: The latest offerings from the Criterion collection include a masterwork by Kenji Mizoguchi, and Summer, which is a classic documentary. Winners both.
The Diary of a Chambermaid: Though it’s easy to decry remake fever, Jean Renoir, arguably the great filmmaker ever, was remade twice and well by Akira Kurosawa and by Luis Bunuel. This is the Renoir version of this story, and it’s excellent, no question, though it’s hard not to argue that Bunuel did it better.
The Hudsucker Proxy: As part of Warner Archive’s expansion in releasing some of the hundreds of films owned by WB, we’re seeing the Coen Brothers big fiasco The Hudsucker Proxy hitting Blu-ray through one arm of the company. This is great news for fans, as this is one of their best and silliest efforts.
What are you picking up this week?