Cult Epics

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Ashirg
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 9:10 am
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#1 Post by Ashirg » Tue Nov 21, 2006 8:17 pm

Cult Epics

The studio that brought us Tinto Brass, Vintage Erotica, Bette Page, Walerian Borowczyk and Fernando Arrabal is releasing Un Chant d'Amour is a 2-disc limited edition on February 27. List price is $29.95. Here's the info:
Cult Epics is proud to present Jean Genet's rarely seen semi-pornographic film UN CHANT D'AMOUR. Originally made for Parisian gay porn collectors in 1950, the film is visually reminiscent of Jean Cocteau's Blood of a Poet, Belle et la Bete and Kenneth Anger's Fireworks. The story, set in a prison with three main characters, a guard and two prisoners, is a voyeuristic, confrontational, poetic masterpiece. Despite all elements of his writings being present, Genet actually denounced the making of this film when he became popular as a novelist. Forbidden in France upon its release, and only available in the US in censored form and through underground distribution, UN CHANT D'AMOUR is now released from its obscurity and is presented in its complete version, with a new transfer.

Disc One:
Feature Film With Commentary By Kenneth Anger

Disc Two:
Genet Documentary By Antoine Bourseiller, 1981
Jean Genet Interview By Bertrand Poirot-Delpech, 1982

Special Features:
• New Film Transfer
• Introduction By Jonas Mekas
• Audio Commentary By Kenneth Anger
• Still Photo Booklet

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Matt
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:58 pm

#2 Post by Matt » Tue Nov 21, 2006 9:58 pm

Disc One:
Feature Film With Commentary By Kenneth Anger
That's absolutely bonkers! Even though I have the BFI disc, I'm totally buying this just for the commentary.

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Lino
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#3 Post by Lino » Wed Nov 22, 2006 12:09 pm

Same here! Wow, who'd have thought?! Ken Anger doing an audio commentary on Chant d'Amour? What's next? A properly restored and remastered Pink Narcissus with commentary by Pierre et Gilles? :wink:

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Michael
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 12:09 pm

#4 Post by Michael » Wed Nov 22, 2006 10:16 pm

That's really awesome!
A properly restored and remastered Pink Narcissus with commentary by Pierre et Gilles?
Commentary by Pierre et Gilles? Nah. I'd rather to hear it from the director himself and Bobby Kendall. I'm more interested in how the director managed to film all that inside his apartment. Simply a very brilliant film that still sticks to me since I saw it.

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Lino
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#5 Post by Lino » Thu Nov 23, 2006 8:00 am

Michael wrote:
Lino wrote: A properly restored and remastered Pink Narcissus with commentary by Pierre et Gilles?
Commentary by Pierre et Gilles? Nah. I'd rather to hear it from the director himself and Bobby Kendall.
That would be a dream but stranger things have happened. Anyway, I still think Pierre et Gilles wouldn't mind doing the commentary since they OBVIOUSLY are big fans of the movie. For proof, look below and guess which picture is from Pink Narcissus and which one's from the French duo:

ImageImage

Not a very good example, I know but you get the picture.

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Michael
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#6 Post by Michael » Fri Nov 24, 2006 8:53 pm

I'm damn curious how Bobby Kendall looks today. Does anyone know what's up with this guy?

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Lino
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#7 Post by Lino » Thu Jan 25, 2007 12:04 pm

Image

And some updated extras, courtesy of a imdb.com boards poster:
DISC I: UN CHANT D'AMOUR
France . 1950. B&W . 25 Minutes

Special Features
. New Film Transfer
. Video Introduction by Jonas Mekas
. Audio Commentary by Kenneth Anger
. Still Photo Booklet

DISC II: GENET Documentary by Antoine Bourseiller
France . 1981 . Color . 52 Mins

JEAN GENET Interview by Bertrand Poirot-Delpech
France . Color . 1982 . 46 Mins
Someone hand me a handkerchief.

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jesus the mexican boi
Joined: Fri Nov 05, 2004 5:09 am
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#8 Post by jesus the mexican boi » Thu Jan 25, 2007 12:23 pm

Lino wrote:Someone hand me a handkerchief.
There are at least two ways to read that line, Desdemona.

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Lino
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#9 Post by Lino » Thu Jan 25, 2007 1:20 pm

jesus the mexican boi wrote:
Lino wrote:Someone hand me a handkerchief.
There are at least two ways to read that line, Desdemona.
I know. I've always been a fan of ambiguity.

jcelwin
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 2:09 pm

#10 Post by jcelwin » Thu Jan 25, 2007 4:43 pm

In this case both are probably true.
The question though, which order?
:wink:

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Matt
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#11 Post by Matt » Thu Jan 25, 2007 5:38 pm

Image

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HerrSchreck
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#12 Post by HerrSchreck » Sun Jan 28, 2007 9:59 am

Matt wrote:Image
I have found a new emoticon!

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skuhn8
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#13 Post by skuhn8 » Sun Jan 28, 2007 10:07 am

I don't know how long that video introduction is, but touting a 'two-disc edition' for what appears to be barely over two hours of material is kind of a joke.

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Don Lope de Aguirre
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2006 5:39 pm
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#14 Post by Don Lope de Aguirre » Thu Feb 22, 2007 7:21 pm

Semi-tangentially, this film is also included in an unreleased set called: The Experimental Avant Garde Series Volume 25: Queer As Film (Amazon.com)

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ouatitw
Joined: Tue Dec 19, 2006 11:13 am

#15 Post by ouatitw » Tue Feb 27, 2007 10:34 pm

I have the Walerian Borowczyk Collection from Cult DVD and it is a good release although the extras are a little slim. It is worth checking out if you like those kind of films.

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Lino
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#16 Post by Lino » Wed Feb 28, 2007 4:10 pm

Un Chant d'Amour came out yesterday. Anyone got it?

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Matt
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#17 Post by Matt » Wed Feb 28, 2007 4:17 pm

Lino wrote:Un Chant d'Amour came out yesterday. Anyone got it?
Mine shipped from Deep Discount almost a week ago, so I should be getting it soon. I'll post a report as soon as it arrives.

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Michael
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 12:09 pm

#18 Post by Michael » Wed Feb 28, 2007 4:24 pm

I'll post a report as soon as it arrives.
That will be extremely helpful. Not sure if I want to double dip since I'm 100% happy with the BFI disc. I was disappointed with Anger's surprisingly boring commentary that came with the recently released Anger Vol. 1 disc so that's why I've been holding back from buying the new Chant d'amour disc.

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Lino
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#19 Post by Lino » Fri Mar 02, 2007 12:53 pm

DVDManiacs has a review.

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Matt
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#20 Post by Matt » Fri Mar 02, 2007 1:09 pm

Lino wrote:DVDManiacs has a review.
Sounds like it's not a replacement for the BFI disc (which has a lovely transfer and a nice new score). I'll watch the interviews and sell it. And I'll never again be suckered into buying something just because it has a Kenneth Anger commentary.

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vogler
Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2006 8:42 am
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#21 Post by vogler » Fri Mar 02, 2007 1:36 pm

Matt wrote:And I'll never again be suckered into buying something just because it has a Kenneth Anger commentary.
In my opinion the problem is not Kenneth Anger, I think the problem is the idea of the commentary track itself. I think it was a bad move trying to get Anger to conform to this modern idea of dvd commentary tracks. This simply limits him in what he is able to discuss. Anyone who has heard Anger speak knows he is the sort of person who just says whatever comes into his head and is likely to go off on wild tangents at any moment, but his words are always entertaining and he is full of all kinds of information about film. I think he's also the kind of artist who likes to let films speak for themselves and therefore I think the idea of getting him to record commentary tracks was very unwise. This applies to the Fantoma set as well. If they had just recorded video interviews with him it would have been a different story. They would surely have more closely represented the way Anger is in person. I get the impression that the whole concept of the commentary track is rather alien to him (as it is to me) and only limits the imformation that he is able to give on the films. Interviews would have been far better, both for the Anger set and this DVD. The fault lies with the concept, not Kenneth Anger. That's what I reckon anyway.

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Lino
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#22 Post by Lino » Fri Mar 02, 2007 2:33 pm

Maybe he just needs an audience. And some pills too. But yeah -- I agree that he feels somewhat uncomfortable doing this sort of thing. Still, those featurettes do sound interesting and somewhat rare.

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Matt
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:58 pm

#23 Post by Matt » Fri Mar 02, 2007 4:42 pm

For those what cares about packaging, Un Chant d'amour comes in a double Alpha.

Here are some screen grabs. The BFI image is on top, Cult Epics below. All caps are uncompressed native resolution. May not be exact frame matches.

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It looks very dark to me and full of dust and speckles. There are chapters, but no chapter index. Overall, pretty unsatisfying (though I haven't looked at the features yet).
Last edited by Matt on Fri Mar 02, 2007 6:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Michael
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#24 Post by Michael » Fri Mar 02, 2007 6:26 pm

Based on Matt's screen grabs (above), the BFI disc has to look 1,000 times better.

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Matt
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#25 Post by Matt » Fri Mar 02, 2007 6:32 pm

It's weird. Looking at just the caps, neither one looks very good. In motion, the BFI seems much grainier, but brighter (and cropped less). There also an apparent proportion problem on the Cult Epics; looks like Cult Epics cropped off some image from the top and bottom and then squished the sides in to fit the aspect ratio. Aspect ratio for both discs is 1.33:1.

Having not watched the extras yet, I'd still recommend the BFI over the Cult Epics (unless you're a Genet fanatic). The BFI has a very good commentary, an excellent Simon Fisher Turner score, a concise and informative essay, and the better picture.

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