Lindsay Anderson’s If….starring Malcolm McDowellmakes its Blu-ray debut alongside The Complete Jean Vigo, a collection of all the films that Vigo, who died at 29 of tuberculosis, made during his brief career as a filmmaker.
If… (1968) Spine # 391
SYNOPSIS:Lindsay Anderson’s If….is a daringly anarchic vision of British society, set in a boarding school in late-sixties England. Before Kubrick made his mischief iconic in A Clockwork Orange,Malcolm McDowell made a hell of an impression as the insouciant Mick Travis, who, along with his school chums, trumps authority at every turn, finally emerging as a violent savior in the vicious games of one-upmanship played by both students and masters. Mixing color and black and white as audaciously as it mixes fantasy and reality, If….remains one of cinema’s most unforgettable rebel yells.
- Restored high-definition digital transfer, approved by cinematographer Miroslav Ondříček and assistant editor Ian Rakoff (with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition)
- Audio commentary featuring film critic and historian David Robinson and actor Malcolm McDowell
- Episode of the Scottish TV series Cast and Crewfrom 2003, featuring interviews with McDowell, Ondříček, Rakoff, director’s assistant Stephen Frears, producer Michael Medwin, and screenwriter David Sherwin
- Video interview with actor Graham Crowden
- Thursday’s Children(1954), an Academy Award–winning documentary about a school for deaf children, by director Lindsay Anderson and Guy Brenton and narrated by actor Richard Burton
- PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic David Ehrenstein as well as reprinted pieces by Sherwin and Anderson
The Complete Vigo (1930-34) Spine #578
SYNOPSIS:Even among cinema’s legends, Jean Vigo stands apart. The son of a notorious anarchist, Vigo had a brief but brilliant career making poetic, lightly surrealist films before his life was cut tragically short by tuberculosis at age twenty-nine. Like the daring early works of his contemporaries Jean Cocteau and Luis Buñuel, Vigo’s films refused to play by the rules. This set includes all of Vigo’s titles: À propos de Nice,an absurdist, rhythmic slice of life from the bustling coastal city; Taris,an inventive short portrait of a swimming champion; Zéro de conduite,a radical, delightful tale of boarding-school rebellion that has influenced countless filmmakers; and L’Atalante,widely regarded as one of cinema’s finest achievements, about newlyweds beginning their life together on a canal barge. These are the witty, visually adventurous works of a pivotal film artist.
- New high-definition digital restorations of all four of Jean Vigo’s films (with uncompressed monaural soundtracks on the Blu-ray edition)
- Audio commentaries featuring Michael Temple, author of Jean Vigo
- Score for À propos de Niceby Marc Perrone, from 2001
- Alternate edits from À propos de Nice,featuring footage cut by Vigo
- Episode of the French television series Cinéastes de notre tempsabout Vigo, from 1964
- Conversation from 1968 between filmmakers François Truffaut and Eric Rohmer on L’Atalante
- Animated tribute to Vigo by filmmaker Michel Gondry
- Les voyages de “L’Atalante,”film restorer and historian Bernard Eisenschitz’s 2001 documentary tracking the history of the film
- Video interview from 2001 with director Otar Iosseliani on Vigo
- New and improved English subtitle translations
PLUS: A booklet featuring essays by critics Michael Almereyda, Robert Polito, B. Kite, and Luc Sante