‘Wolf of Wall Street’, ‘Persona’, ‘The Past’, ‘King of Comedy’ and More on DVD & Blu-ray This Week

Persona (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray/DVD)

I have watched all of Criterion’s new Blu-ray for Ingmar Bergman‘s absolute classic, Persona, and will have a more in-depth look at the film tomorrow, but for now let me just say I consider this an essential title for film fans interested in collecting the best cinema has had to offer over the course of its rich history. I only saw Persona for the first time a little over three years ago and was absolutely floored. It’s one of those films you don’t need to “get” to understand, which I know is confusing. Put, hopefully, more simply, this is a film that’s meant to confuse and confound, but it does it in such a way that you never feel you’re missing something. Yet, by the end you’ll be left enthralled by the images you’ve witnessed, the story (or lack thereof) you’ve witnessed, the performances, the score, the editing and just about everything else. You won’t be able to explain it all and you might not be able to put it into words, but you’ll know you’ve experienced something special.

The Wolf of Wall Street

I watched The Wolf of Wall Street just last night and I’m convinced I did a bad, bad thing, leaving it off my list of the Top Ten Movies of 2013. It just took too long for this movie to settle in for me as a favorite. I saw it twice in theaters, but my viewings were too close to one another to really allow the film time to gestate before seeing it again. It wasn’t until the controversy caused me to look at the film a little closer and then, even further out, the comedy began hitting me harder. One day I’ll have to revisit that top ten and give this film the credit it’s due because it just might even be the best of 2013.

The Past

I haven’t revisited Asghar Farhadi‘s The Past since seeing it at the Cannes Film Festival last year, but I will say it was one of 2013’s most overlooked films and for the life of me I can’t figure out why, especially given the love and adulation A Separation received, a film I feel is good, but falls short of this one. Give it a watch and enjoy the performances, most of all from Pauline Burlet, a newcomer I expect (or is it hope?) we’ll be seeing a lot more of soon.

The Great Beauty (Criterion Collection)

I don’t quite understand the love for this one. Paolo Sorrentino certainly shows respect for the work of Federico Fellini and has a loving eye for Rome, but the film is over indulgent and doesn’t say much. There are some wonderful scenes, an outdoor conversation springs to mind, but overall it didn’t capture my attention the way it did so many others. That said, it’s a film you should see for yourself. Don’t let my opinion cause you to avoid a film many others have enjoyed immensely.

King of Comedy: 30th Anniversary [Blu-ray]

I first saw Martin Scorsese‘s The King of Comedy a little over a year ago as part of the now-defunct RopeofSilicon Movie Club. Maybe now that it’s on Blu-ray more of you will see it and join the conversation?

Hunchback of Notre Dame [Blu-ray]

Flicker Alley released the 1923 classic Lon Chaney version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame last week, but I overlooked it and wanted to be sure I mentioned it. I haven’t yet watched it but this is a silent film well worth the watch and I’m hoping the Blu-ray adds to that experience. I will be reviewing it as soon as I find the time to properly dig in.

Delivery Man

Eh, now we get to the titles I don’t have much interest in. I don’t have anything to say…


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