From the Big Screen:
This Week’s Highlights:
There’s two outstanding releases this week from The Criterion Collection:
Genius provocateur Nagisa Oshima (“In the Realm of the Senses”), an influential figure in the Japanese New Wave of the 1960s, made one of his most startling political statements with his compelling pitch-black satire “Death By Hanging” (1968). In this macabre farce, a Korean man is sentenced to death in Japan but survives his execution, sending the authorities into a panic about what to do next. At once disturbing and oddly amusing, Oshima’s constantly surprising film is a subversive and surreal indictment of capital punishment, religion and the treatment of Korean immigrants in his country. New, restored 4K digital transfer, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray … Charlie Chaplin was already an international star when he decided to break out of the short-film format and make his first full-length feature. “The Kid” (1921) doesn’t merely show Chaplin at a turning point, when he proved that he was a serious film director — it remains an expressive masterwork of silent cinema. In it, he stars as his lovable Tramp character, this time raising an orphan (a remarkable young Jackie Coogan) he has rescued from the streets. Chaplin and Coogan make a miraculous pair in this nimble marriage of sentiment and slapstick, a film that is, as its opening title card states, “a picture with a smile — and perhaps, a tear.” New 4K digital restoration of Charlie Chaplin’s 1972 re-release version of the film, featuring an original score by Chaplin, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray.
From TV to DVD:
In “The Brady Kids: The Complete Animated Series” (1972-73), the members of the original Brady Bunch cast returned to voice their iconic roles for 22 episodes of this animated series. When the six Brady kids befriend a magical bird and two panda cubs, their adventures become more amazing than ever: they travel to ancient Greece, blast off for an out-of-this-world trip and help thwart a bank robbery.Three-disc DVD from Shout! Factory … “Girls: The Complete Fourth Season” (2015) is a two-disc set with all 10 episodes of the series that follows the misadventures of a group of twenty-something friends in and out of NYC. This season finds the girls tentatively edging towards maturity as they take on new personas in new worlds. As the season begins, Hannah (Lena Dunham) leaves New York to attend the prestigious Iowa Writers’ Workshop in the hopes of becoming a more serious writer, while confronting uncertainty in her relationship with Adam (Adam Driver). Meanwhile, back in New York, Marnie (Allison Williams) pursues a music career while balancing her professional and romantic relationship with Desi (Ebon Moss-Bachrach); Shoshanna (Zosia Mamet) graduates and begins interviewing for jobs, while sorting out her relationship with Ray (Alex Karpovsky); and Jessa (Jemima Kirke) is trying out sobriety through AA, though her ability to stir up drama remains undiminished. On DVD, Blu-ray from HBO … “Togetherness: The Complete First Season” (2015) is a two-disc set with all eight-episodes of the series that follows four adults living under one roof struggling to keep their relationships and dreams alive as they approach the age of forty. Created by Jay Duplass & Mark Duplass. In the series, Brett (Mark Duplass) is a straitlaced sound designer trying to rediscover himself while his wife Michelle (Melanie Lynskey) is eager to rekindle her passion for romance and life. Their lives are shaken up with the arrival of Michelle’s sister Tina (Amanda Peet), who comes to stay with them as she desperately tries to find a husband and get her bouncy-castle business off the ground, and Brett’s best friend Alex (Steve Zissis), who decides to give his stalled acting career one last try. Blending laughter and pathos, “Togetherness” shows the tragically comedic struggle to follow personal dreams while still remaining good friends, siblings, and spouses to each other. On DVD, Blu-ray from HBO … In the three-part miniseries “The Trials Of Jimmy Rose” (2015), Ray Winstone plays Jimmy Rose, a career criminal newly free after 12 years in prison. Greeted with cold disdain from his wife, Jacki, Jimmy decides to stick to the terms of his parole: hold down a job and stay right in the eyes of the law. But when he finds out that his beloved granddaughter is in trouble, Jimmy will go to extraordinary lengths for his family. From Acorn Media.