Clint Walker and the Flying Dutchman

Some end-of-the-summer cleaning up here, as I backtrack a bit for reviews of Kino’s slightly disappointing Blu-ray edition of Albert Lewin’s hallucinatory “Pandora and the Flying Dutchman” (1951), and a quick look at “Yellowstone Kelly,” one of the three nifty little westerns that Gordon Douglas made with the Warner Bros. TV western star Clint [...]

Satoshi Kon 1963-2010

Terrible news from Japan: the anime director Satoshi Kon, one of that medium’s true artists, has died at the age of 47, reportedly from cancer. He was a brilliant filmmaker — “Perfect Blue,” “Millennium Actress,” “Tokyo Godfathers,” “Paranoia Agent,” “Paprika” — with decades of work ahead of him. He leaves behind an unfinished feature, [...]

Silent von Sternberg

Criterion’s new box set of three silent films by Josef von Sternberg — “Underworld” (1927), “The Last Command” (1928) and “The Docks of New York” (1928) — is self-evidently one of the most important releases of the year, with magnificent renderings of three important films culminating in the transcendent masterpiece that is “Docks.” The [...]

Kim Novak

A five-film box set from Sony pays homage to Kim Novak, Columbia Pictures’ last great star and one of the last to be manufactured — with some resistance from Ms. Novak — by the studio system at the height of its industrial efficiency.

The three most familiar titles — Joshua Logan’s “Picnic” (1955), [...]

Walsh at War

The American home video industry remains unaccountably resistant to directors — I mean, Ma and Pa Kettle have a box set, while Douglas Sirk gets bupkus? — but once in a while something slips through the cracks, like the William Wellman set that Warners released last year under the cover of a “Forbidden Hollywood” [...]

Sacha Guitry

Sacha Guitry’s films seem to me so immediately and immensely enjoyable that I’ve never understood why he isn’t better known outside France. His freedom of tone and guiltless embrace of theatricality make his work look more audacious and deeply cinematic all the time, and his lasting influence –particularly on Alain Resnais, whose work from [...]