Inspiring Attenborough : Sir David at 90

The BBC has told us that they’ll be recording a show at The London Studios in Waterloo to celebrate Sir David Attenborough’s 90th birthday.

Celebrating his 90th birthday in May 2016, the world’s foremost naturalist, Sir David Attenborough will be talking to Kirsty Young about his life and career – about the inspiring people he’s met, the extraordinary journeys he’s made, and the incredible animal encounters he’ll never forget.

The show will look at key areas of David’s life and work, with a focus on filming the natural world, covering animal behaviour, conservation projects, and advances in technology. Talking to studio guests, and through pre-recorded interviews with experts, David and Kirsty will discuss the latest updates on these areas.

Featuring stunning Natural History archive, the show will celebrate Sir David’s contribution to our understanding of the natural world.

The Last Command

Eureka Entertainment are releasing The Last Command in May as part of their The Masters Of Cinema series. Directed by Josef von Sternberg, and starring Emil Jannings, this is a hugely under-rated film that is in the Timeout Top 100 list.

Special Features:

• High-definition presentation on the Blu-ray
• Original organ score by Gaylord Carter (uncompressed on the Blu-ray)
• New video interview with critic Tony Rayns
• Sternberg Till ’29, a video essay by scholar Tag Gallagher
• A 32-page booklet featuring an excerpt from Von Sternberg’s autobiography Fun in a Chinese Laundry, two original reviews from 1928, a 1929 profile of Jannings, and archival images.

The Criterion Collection expands into the UK

Sight And Sound, the film magazine from the BFI, sent out an email newsletter this week announcing that Criterion are expanding into the UK, something that Criterion Cast have picked up on.

First up on the roster are Toostie, Grey Gardens, Speedy, It Happened One Night, Roman Polanski’s MacBeth, and Only Angels Have Wings. From Amazon, it appears that these are blu ray only titles.

Journey To The Shore

Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s Journey To The Shore (Kishibe no tabi) is scheduled for release on 23rd May, courtesy of Eureka Entertainment and their The Masters Of Cinema Series. It’s a dual format edition, which means it contains both DVD and blu ray versions.

To quote Eureka, it’s “a beautifully shot supernatural love story” which confirms Kurosawa’s place as a contemporary auteur.

Man With A Movie Camera

Dziga Vertov’s Man With A Movie Camera gets The Masters Of Cinema treatment from Eureka Entertainment, namely a four disc limited edition release featuring both the DVD and blu ray discs.

Man With A Movie Camera is often heralded as one of the greatest documentaries of all time. The London Evening Standard says of the Eureka release: “Often described as the best documentary ever made, Dziga Vertov’s 1929 film – shot in Russia as Stalin got busy – is even more astonishing in this great restoration”.

DVD Beaver says “Trust Masters of Cinema to do this to the max. This 4-disc set is the best, IMO and a must own. Our absolute highest recommendation!” They also mentioned that the 100 page booklet is a real gem.

Man With A Movie Camera 4 Disc Blu Ray Set
Man With A Movie Camera 4 Disc Blu Ray Set

Special Features:

  • Four disc Limited Edition set, with all content on Blu-ray and DVD
  • New high-definition restored transfers of all five films
  • Uncompressed PCM audio on all films
  • Score by The Alloy Orchestra for Man with a Movie Camera
  • Score by Robert Israel for Kino-Eye
  • New audio commentary on Man with a Movie Camera by film scholar Adrian Martin
  • The Life and Times of Dziga Vertov – an exclusive, lengthy video interview with film scholar Ian Christie on Vertov’s career and the films in this set
  • Optional English subtitles on all films
  • 100-page limited edition book featuring the words of Dziga Vertov, archival imagery and more!

 

Does This Edition Feature The Michael Nyman Score?

No, this is not Michael Nyman’s Man With A Movie Camera. This edition is released by the BFI.

Silent Running

Bruce Dern stars in Doug Trumbull’s directorial debut Silent Running, released on blu-ray by Eureka Entertainment as a part of their acclaimed The Masters Of Cinema series.

Mark Kermode calls Silent Running one of the “greatest movies ever made” in his Kermode Uncut feature.  I’m a big fan of 2001, something that Doug Trumbull worked on, but Kermode’s three minute eulogy to Silent Running is fascinating – he describes this film as “the yin to 2001’s yang”

Special Features:

  • Exclusively restored beautiful high-definition 1080p transfer
  • Full-length commentary by director Douglas Trumbull and actor Bruce Dern
  • Isolated music and effects track
  • Optional English SDH subtitles on the feature
  • The Making of Silent Running, a 1972 on-set documentary [50:00 minutes approx]
  • Two video pieces with Douglas Trumbull [31:00 + 5:00]
  • A Conversation with Bruce Dern, a discussion with the actor [11:00]
  • Original theatrical trailer [3:00]
  • A lavish 48-page full-colour booklet featuring rare photographs and artwork from Trumbull’s personal collection, and recollections of the film’s cinematographer, special designs coordinator, and composer

Grace & Favour – The Complete Series

Eureka Entertainment are releasing Grace & Favour (Are You Being Served? Again!) as a four disc DVD set, scheduled for release in late May.

 

What’s it all about?

The sequel series to one of the most beloved British sitcoms of all time, Grace & Favour (released internationally as Are You Being Served? Again! ) reunites the dysfunctional Grace Brothers sales team for more misadventures and innuendo-laden squabbling.

After ”Young Mr. Grace” dies in an unfortunate scuba-diving incident, the staff at Grace Brothers find that their pension fund has been unwisely invested in a country manor house, currently operating as a hotel. With no other options, Mr. Humphries, Mrs. Slocombe, Captain Peacock, Miss Brahms and Mr. Rumbold all reluctantly team up and attempt to turn the hotel into a profitable business venture.

Reuniting the original cast members from Are You Being Served?  and written & produced by British comedy-writer legends David Croft and Jeremy Lloyd, Grace & Favour is one of the finest sitcoms ever produced for British television. Presented here in a new four-disc set, this long overdue home entertainment première is full of more laughs and double-entendres than you can shake a stick at. So, sit back and indulge in all twelve episodes of endless innuendo, hilarity and mischief with the staff from Grace Brothers.

Special Features:

  • English subtitles for the deaf and hard-of-hearing
  • Four-disc set featuring all twelve episodes

Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em Special

frank_spencerNews reached us from the BBC that the one and only Michael Crawford is back and reprising his role as the iconic Frank Spencer in a special one-off Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em sketch for Sport Relief 2016. One of the scenes is scheduled to be filmed with cycling legend Sir Bradley Wiggins at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, inside the Lee Valley velodrome.

Are You Being Served?

Classic British sitcom Are You Being Served? returns to BBC One TV later this year. Picking up where Jeremy Lloyd and David Croft’s much loved comedy left off, the show will bring Grace Brothers and some of the nation’s all-time favourite sitcom characters including Mrs Slocombe, Captain Peacock, Miss Brahms, and Mr Humphries back to life with an all star cast.

Filming is on 5th March at The Studios in MediaCityUK in Salford.

Further details about this re-make (reboot?) can be found here

Farewell My Concubine

The BFI are scheduled to release Chen Kaige’s Farewell My Concubine towards the end of March 2016 in a dual format edition that contains both the DVD and blu-ray discs. Farewell My Concubine is the only Chinese film ever to win the Palme D’Or at the Cannes Film Festival.

It’s eagerly anticipated by film lovers, as this will be the first blu-ray release of the film by a distributor with a mostly-excellent track record. To date, the only blu-ray release of note of this classic film has been from South Korea.