New DVDs: Two by Martin Ritt

Overpraised in his time, underestimated in ours: the fate that has befallen Martin Ritt is hardly unusual, but the man did make some decent movies — a couple of which, “The Spy Who Came in From the Cold” (1965) and “Sounder” (1972),” have come out on DVD today, and are the subject of my [...]

Jerry Walks Among Us

Jerry Lewis didn’t disappoint at Saturday’s appearance at the Times Center in Manhattan, for an onstage interview conducted by Peter Bogdanovich and sponsored by the Museum of the Moving Image.

The best news is that he looks terrific and seems as sharp as ever at 82. Bogdanovich started by asking some serious questions, [...]

New DVDs: Griffith Masterworks 2

A new box set from Kino includes five features from the ur-auteur: “The Avenging Conscience,” a 1914 production that finds Griffith on the verge of inventing expressionism; “Way Down East” (1920), at last available in MOMA’s restoration of the nearly three-hour road show version; “Sally of the Sawdust,” a 1925 comedy with W.C. Fields [...]

The Case of Lena Smith (Josef von Sternberg, 1929)

Lost, lost, lost . . .

From Christoph Huber:

The Austrian Filmmuseum has devoted a whole book (bilingual German-English) to the (quite lovely) Lena Smith fragment and whatever information is to be gleaned about the film as a whole. As a project to reconstruct an “imaginary” film it is quite an intriguing endeavor.

The [...]

New DVDs: Our Gang

A new box set from Genius Entertainment that assembles all 80 of the Hal Roach produced “Our Gang” sound shorts – under their re-release title, “The Little Rascals” — provokes some thoughts on the unstructured artistry of Robert A. McGowan, the director in charge of the series during its most productive years. Also, a [...]

Manhatta (Sheeler and Strand, 1921)

This is just really an excuse to post an image from the dazzling new digital restoration of Charles Sheerer and Paul Strand’s pioneering 1921 “Manhatta” that didn’t make it into my story about it (here) in Sunday’s New York Times. This is the first time that cutting edge digital restoration techniques have been used [...]

New DVDs: Universal’s Gregory Peck Collection

A new box set of six Gregory Peck films, four of them new to DVD, give me an excuse to write about Raoul Walsh once again: the highlight of the collection is a magnificent Technicolor restoration of Walsh’s underappreciated “The World in His Arms,” of 1952. The selection includes repacks of Universal’s recent releases [...]