Flick Picks 7/24/2015: Tangerines, Slow West

The dog days would seem to be upon us. For some, the heat, the humidity, like those big budget films crashing through the multiplex, are good things. For others of us...not so much. This is a time of year when the flow of substantial films seems to slow to a near trickle, a phenomenon mirrored by the limited number of DVD releases just now. Fortunately, the new arrivals in DVD offer a rare chance for summer substance.

Foreign Film

TANGERINES

Tangerines

A worthy nominee for best foreign language film at both the Golden Globe and Academy Award ceremonies this year, Tangerines is a particularly graceful entry to the canon of anti-war films. Two Estonians, Ivo and Margus, find themselves between warring forces in the Caucasus Mountains of Georgia in the early 1990's. The two men are among the few native Estonians who have not fled the area, trying to harvest a tangerine crop before all hell breaks loose. When a young Georgian and a Chechen mercenary - very much on opposite sides of the conflict - are wounded near his home, Ivo takes them both in and tries to nurse both back to health while preventing them from killing one another. Tangerines is very serious subject matter rendered gently, even beautifully. Not one to be missed.


Feature Films

SLOW WEST

2015 05 11 1431344951 6115353 slowest3 1

Very well reviewed, Slow West is a western starring the ever-fascinating Michael Fassbender. Fassbender plays a bounty hunter aiding a young Scottish man, traversing the American West in the late 1800's to find his lost love. By most all accounts, an impressive debut for writer/director John Maclean and a treat for those who enjoy smart, moody westerns.

We have also added two very different films from the Criterion Collection.

MY BEAUTIFUL LAUNDRETTE (1985)

my beautiful laundrette 06 g

Daniel Day Lewis' breakout performance as a street punk who becomes the romantic partner of a young Pakistani man living in London, who aspires to open an upscale laundrette. Stephen Frears' revered film considers with wit and insight issues as weighty as homophobia, class and racism against the backdrop of Margaret Thatcher's Britain of the 1980's.

THE BLACK STALLION (1979).

black stallion

This is the very successful film adaption of Walter Farley's beloved novel. Mickey Rooney won a best supporting actor nomination for his performance as the former jockey, Henry Dailey.

Also new to DVD...In SET FIRE TO THE STARS 

Set fire to the stars

Elijah Wood plays an aspiring poet in 1950, trying to shepherd his hero, Dylan Thomas, in a story based on true events.


Documentary/Non Fiction

TOUGH BEING LOVED BY JERKS

its hard being

The story of Philippe Val, former editor of the satirical French newspaper, Charlie Hebdo. The newspaper chose to publish Danish caricatures of Muhammad in 2005, which has resulted in two deadly attacks on the Charlie Hebdo offices. Daniel Leconte's documentary follows the court cases against Val and his newspaper and their obvious implications for the larger issues of freedom of speech, religious respect and the nature of fundamentalism.

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