APRIL 2, 2022

WALKER

United States | 1987 | 94 min | Color | English
Directed by Alex Cox
SPINE #423

BLU-RAY

A hallucinatory biopic that breaks all cinematic conventions, Walker, from British director Alex Cox, tells the story of nineteenth-century American adventurer William Walker (Ed Harris), who abandoned a series of careers in law, politics, journalism, and medicine to become a soldier of fortune and, for many months, the dictator of Nicaragua. Made with mad abandon and political acuity—and the support of the Sandinista army and government during the contra war—the film uses this true tale as a satirical attack on American ultrapatriotism and a freewheeling condemnation of “manifest destiny.” Featuring a powerful score by Joe Strummer and a performance of intense, repressed rage by Harris, Walker remains one of Cox’s most daring works.

Director-Approved Special Edition Features
  • Restored high-definition digital transfer, approved by director Alex Cox, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • Audio commentary by Cox and screenwriter Rudy Wurlitzer
  • Dispatches from Nicaragua, a documentary about the filming of Walker
  • On Moviemaking and the Revolution, reminiscences about the production twenty years later from an extra on the film
  • Walker 2008 and On the Origins of “Walker” (2016), two short films by Cox (Blu-ray only)
  • Behind-the-scenes photos
  • Trailer (Blu-ray only)
  • English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • PLUS: Essays by film critic Graham Fuller, Wurlitzer, and Linda Sandoval

    Blu-ray cover by Paul Mavrides (pictured); DVD cover by Marc English

APRIL 19, 2022

THE GIRL CAN’T HELP IT

United States | 1956 | 97 min | Color | English
Directed by Frank Tashlin
SPINE #1120

Blu-ray & DVD

In 1956, Frank Tashlin brought the talent for zany visual gags and absurdist pop-culture satire that he’d honed as a master of animation to the task of capturing, in glorious DeLuxe Color, a brand-new craze: rock and roll. This blissfully bonkers jukebox musical tells the story of a mobster’s bombshell girlfriend—the one and only Jayne Mansfield, in a showstopping first major film role—and the washed-up talent agent (Tom Ewell) who seeks to revive his career by turning her into a musical sensation. The only question is: Can she actually sing? A CinemaScope feast of eye-popping midcentury design, The Girl Can’t Help It bops along to a parade of performances by rock-and-roll trailblazers—including Little Richard, Fats Domino, Julie London, Eddie Cochran, the Platters, and Gene Vincent—who light up the screen with the uniquely American sound that was about to conquer the world.

Special Features
  • New high-definition digital transfer, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • Audio commentary featuring film scholar Toby Miller
  • New interview with Eve Golden, biographer of actor Jayne Mansfield
  • New video essay by film critic David Cairns
  • Interview with filmmaker John Waters
  • New conversation between WFMU DJs Dave “the Spazz” Abramson and Gaylord Fields about the music in the film
  • On-set footage
  • Interviews with Mansfield (1957) and musician Little Richard (1984)
  • Episode of Karina Longworth’s podcast You Must Remember This about Mansfield
  • Trailer
  • English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • PLUS: An essay by critic Rachel Syme and, for the Blu-ray, excerpts from director Frank Tashlin’s 1952 book How to Create Cartoons with a new introduction by Ethan de Seife, author of Tashlinesque: The Hollywood Comedies of Frank Tashlin

    New cover by Jaffa the Unknown

APRIL 19, 2022

MIRACLE IN MILAN

Italy | 1951 | 96 min | Black & White | Italian, English
Directed by Vittorio De Sica
SPINE #1119

Blu-ray & DVD

Renowned filmmaker Vittorio De Sica followed up his international triumph Bicycle Thieves with this enchantingly playful neorealist fairy tale, in which he combines his celebrated slice-of-life poetry with flights of graceful comedy and storybook fantasy. On the outskirts of Milan, a band of vagabonds work together to form a shantytown. When it is discovered that the land they occupy contains oil, however, it’s up to the cherubic orphan Totò (Francesco Golisano)—with some divine help—to save their community from greedy developers. Tipping their hats to the imaginative whimsy of Charles Chaplin and René Clair, De Sica and screenwriter Cesare Zavattini, adapting his own novel, craft a bighearted ode to the nobility of everyday people.

SPECIAL FEATURES
  • New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New interview with neorealism expert and film scholar David Forgacs
  • Audio interview from the late 1960s in which director Vittorio De Sica looks back on his career, conducted by film critic Gideon Bachmann
  • Interviews with actor Brunella Bovo and Manuel De Sica, the director’s son
  • Feature-length documentary from 2019 on screenwriter Cesare Zavattini
  • Trailers
  • New English subtitle translation
  • PLUS: An essay by film critic Christina Newland and, on the Blu-ray, “Totò il buono,” a 1940 short story by Zavattini and stage actor Totò that is the earliest version of the narrative on which Miracle in Milan is based

    New cover by Manule Fior

APRIL 26, 2022

Eyimofe (This Is My Desire)

Nigeria | 2020 | 116 min | Color | English
Directed by Arie Esiri and Chuko Esiri
SPINE #1121

Blu-ray & DVD

This revelatory, award-winning debut feature from codirectors (and twin brothers) Arie and Chuko Esiri is a heartrending and hopeful portrait of everyday human endurance in Lagos, Nigeria. Shot on richly textured 16 mm film and infused with the spirit of neorealism, Eyimofe (This Is My Desire) traces the journeys of two distantly connected strangers—Mofe (Jude Akuwudike), an electrician dealing with the fallout of a family tragedy, and Rosa (Temi Ami-Williams), a hairdresser supporting her pregnant teenage sister—as they each pursue their dream of starting a new life in Europe while bumping up against the harsh economic realities of a world in which every interaction is a transaction. From these intimate stories emerges a vivid snapshot of life in contemporary Lagos, whose social fabric is captured in all its vibrancy and complexity.

DIRECTOR-APPROVED SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES
  • New 2K digital transfer, approved by directors Arie and Chuko Esiri, with 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New conversation between the directors, moderated by filmmaker Bette Gordon
  • Interview with producer Melissa O. Adeyemo
  • Deleted scenes featuring audio commentary by the directors
  • Three short films: Goose (2017), directed by Arie and Chuko Esiri; Besida (2018), directed by Chuko Esiri; and Because Men in Silk Shirts on Lagos Nights (2018), directed by Arie Esiri
  • Trailer
  • PLUS: An essay by writer and filmmaker Maryam Kazeem

    New cover by Diana Ejaita

APRIL 26, 2022

’Round Midnight

United States, France | 1986 | 131 min | Color | French, English
Directed by Bertrand Tavernier
SPINE #1122

Blu-ray & DVD

’Round Midnight is a love letter from director Bertrand Tavernier to the heyday of bebop and to the Black American musicians who found refuge in the smoky underground jazz clubs of 1950s Paris. In a miraculous, sui generis fusion of performer and character that was nominated for an Oscar, legendary saxophonist Dexter Gordon plays Dale Turner, a brilliant New York jazz veteran whose music aches with beauty but whose personal life is ravaged by addiction. Searching for a fresh start in Paris, Turner strikes up an unlikely friendship with a struggling single father and ardent jazz fan (François Cluzet) who finds his life transformed as he attempts to help the self-destructive musician. Herbie Hancock’s evocative, Oscar-winning score sets the mood for this definitive jazz film, a bittersweet opus that glows with lived-in, soulful authenticity.

Special Features
  • New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed stereo soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • Alternate 5.1 surround soundtrack, supervised by composer Herbie Hancock and presented in DTS-HD Master Audio
  • New interview with jazz and cultural critic Gary Giddins
  • New conversation with music producer Michael Cuscuna and author Maxine Gordon, widow of musician Dexter Gordon
  • Before Midnight, a 1986 behind-the-scenes documentary
  • Panel discussion from 2014 featuring director Bertrand Tavernier, Cuscuna, Maxine Gordon, and jazz scholar John Szwed, moderated by jazz critic and broadcaster Mark Ruffin
  • Performance from 1969 of “Fried Bananas” by Dexter Gordon, directed by Teit Jørgensen
  • New English subtitle translation and English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • PLUS: An essay by scholar Mark Anthony Neal

    New cover by F. Ron Miller

APRIL 26, 2022

For All Mankind

United States | 1989 | 80 min | Color | English
Directed by Al Reinert
SPINE #54

4K UHD+Blu-ray Combo

In July 1969, the space race ended when Apollo 11 fulfilled President John F. Kennedy’s challenge of “landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth.” No one who witnessed the lunar landing will ever forget it. Twenty years later, Al Reinert constructed a documentary that imparts the unforgettable story of the twenty-four astronauts who participated in the Apollo mission to land on the moon—told in their words and in their voices, using the images they captured. With its awe-inspiring, otherworldly footage and a haunting atmospheric soundtrack by Brian Eno, For All Mankind stirs us with a profound sense of compassion for the “pale blue dot” that is our home, and it is still the most radical, visually dazzling work of cinema that has been made about this earthshaking event.

Special Features
  • In the 4K UHD edition: New 4K digital restorations of the original 1.33:1 framing and the alternate 1.85:1 theatrical presentation, with 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack
  • In the 4K UHD edition: One 4K UHD disc of the film presented in Dolby Vision HDR and one Blu-ray with the film and special features
  • In the Blu-ray and DVD editions: High-definition digital transfer, supervised and approved by producer-director Al Reinert, with DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • Audio commentary featuring director Al Reinert and Apollo 17 commander Eugene A. Cernan, the last person to set foot on the moon
  • An Accidental Gift: The Making of “For All Mankind,” a documentary featuring interviews with Reinert, Apollo 12 and Skylab astronaut Alan Bean, and NASA archive specialists
  • Selection of excerpted interviews with fifteen of the Apollo astronauts
  • Program about Bean’s artwork, accompanied by a gallery of his paintings
  • NASA audio highlights and liftoff footage
  • Optional on-screen identification of astronauts and mission-control specialists
  • PLUS: Essays by film critic Terrence Rafferty and Reinert

New cover by Eric Skillman

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