DVD RELEASES 2010/6/8

There have certainly been more wild and crazy weeks on the DVD release front, but that’s okay. You still have some work to do:

New Release of the Week

The Sun (Kino/Lorber) — Technically, Alexander Sokurov’s long overdue—on these shores, at least—excellent 2005 drama about Emperor Hirohito’s (Issey Ogata) waning days of power was released last week, but my eyes were too clogged by the dirt and grime of Tony Manero to notice. Which qualifies The Sun as this week’s most noteworthy new—if not brand spanking new—release. I do very much hope the final DVD reflects a transfer from the golden-filtered 35mm theatrical print I saw at the 2005 New York Film Festival as opposed to the untreated, hyper-video looking press screener DVD that I watched in conjunction with the official theatrical release. Compared to the big-screen version, this particular small-screen experience felt much less visually captivating. Buy it on DVD.

Perfect For Home Viewing New Release Of The Week

Shutter Island (Paramount) — The more that Martin Scorsese told instead of showed things in this colorful, bombastic adaptation of Dennis Lehane’s novel, the more I lost my appreciation for it. I’d love to see a more abstract cut with exposition completely excised from the equation. That said, if you know what you’re getting into with this throwback of a thriller starring an impressively sturdy Leonardo DiCaprio (and an always sturdy Mark Ruffalo), Shutter Island makes for a pleasurable sensory feast. Buy it on DVD or Blu-ray.

New to Blu-ray

Happy Together (Kino) — Speaking of pleasurable sensory feasts, Wong Kar Wai’s 1997 drama about the ever-dissolving relationship between two lovers (Tony Leung and Leslie Cheung) who flee from Hong Kong to Buenos Aires in order to try to salvage their romance, mixes painful human interactions with Christopher Doyle’s moody and sensuous cinematography. It is now finally available on Blu-ray, where it will undoubtedly look and sound superb.

Wild Card of The Week

Family Matters: The Complete First Season (Warner Home Video) — Buy it on DVD. Go on, you know you want to.

— Michael Tully

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