Rupert Pupkin Speaks: VHS Gems Guest Post Jeremy Richey ""

Monday, October 22, 2012

VHS Gems Guest Post Jeremy Richey

Jeremy Richey, the dedicated cinephile behind the fantastic film blog Moon In The Gutter (and the Jean Rollin tribute site Fascination), provided today's guest list. If you're not already reading Jeremy's stuff, I have to recommend you check it out. Here's his list!

The April Fools (1967): Stuart Rosenberg’s charming, silly and extremely funny Romantic comedy starring Jack Lemmon and Catherine Deneuve is one of my favorite all-time films and it pains me that it has still never found its way to DVD. A wonderful satirical snapshot of America in the late sixties, The April Fools benefits greatly from Rosenberg’s confident direction, the exuberant lead performances from Lemmon and Deneuve, its great Bacharach and David title-track and an extraordinary supporting cast including Jack Weston, Peter Lawford, Myrna Loy and Charles Boyer! The April Fools is a real buried treasure. 

Full Circle (1978): There is a terrible French DVD of Richard Loncraine’s mesmerizing adaptation of Peter Straub’s Julia starring a never-better Mia Farrow but the quality special edition disc it deserves is still missing. Perhaps there is finally hope for this masterful film as Netflix recently started streaming a wonderful HD print!

Une Femme Douce (1969): New Yorkers old VHS copy is still the only way to see Robert Bresson’s haunting masterpiece A Gentle Woman starring the lovely Dominique Sanda here in the States. This is one of the great films of the sixties and would be an ideal candidate for the Criterion Collection.

Of Human Bondage (1964): Ken Hughes and Kim Novak took a critical pounding for the 1964 Maugham’s update but I have always found it a particularly strange and haunting creation and Novak’s work here is particularly spectacular. 

Sweet Nothing (1996): Inspired by some anonymous diaries screenwriter Lee Drysdale found in an abandoned New York City loft in the early nineties, Gary Winick’s unsettling drama Sweet Nothing (1996) is a film that received much acclaim upon its release but has since all but disappeared from view. Fuelled by powerhouse performances by Michael Imperioli, Mira Sorvino and Paul Calderon, Sweet Nothing is a refreshingly subtle and low-key entry into the ‘drug film’ genre, and has been deserving of a much larger audience since it appeared and disappeared from screens in the fall of 1996.

Touched by Love (1980): Also known as To Elvis With Love, this really touching Canadian film marked the great Diane Lane’s introduction to the film-world. Based on a true story, Touched by Love still makes me cry every time I watch it and Lane is extraordinary in it. 

Angela, The Fireworks Woman (1975): In between his incredible The Last House on the Left and The Hills Have Eyes, Wes Craven directed this adult-feature under the name Abe Snake. Craven himself briefly appears alongside the likes of Jennifer Jordan, Eric Edwards, Marc Stevens and Jamie Gillis. More than just an oddity, Angela the Fireworks Woman is quite a powerful work and the original VCA tape is quite a collectable.

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