Thursday, February 02, 2012

New on DVD and Coming to the Egyptian Theatre: The Magnificent Ambersons (1942)

Thanks to ClassicFlix for the tip that THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS (1942) is out this week as a single-title DVD release.

THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS was included as an extra in last spring's 70th Anniversary CITIZEN KANE Blu-ray set. ClassicFlix reports that the new AMBERSONS release is a pressed disc with no extras.

Southern Californians might like to know that on Friday, February 10th, CITIZEN KANE and THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS will be shown as a double bill at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood.

AMBERSONS is on my list of "10 Classics for 2012," so I'm hoping I might be able to fit that evening into this month's busy schedule. I haven't seen CITIZEN KANE since college; it didn't impress me then -- I seem to be a bit of a contrarian when it comes to certain highly regarded classics -- but perhaps I will appreciate it more from my current perspective!

In other Southern California movie news, the Egyptian's sister theater, the Aero, has a great Raymond Chandler double bill planned for February 16th: George Montgomery and Nancy Guild in the rarely shown THE BRASHER DOUBLOON (1947), directed by John Brahm, and Dick Powell in MURDER, MY SWEET (1944), directed by Edward Dmytryk. Alan K. Rode of the Film Noir Foundation will host the movies along with Helen Garber. That's an evening I'd really like to attend.


Blogger Dave Enkosky said...

Cool news about the Ambersons release. I'm still hoping, though, that one day the excised footage will be found and inserted back into the movie.

6:17 PM  
Blogger Robby Cress said...

I'm very excited about the release of Ambersons on DVD. I only wish it wasn't a bare bones release. I tried to see this on the big screen at the first TCM Film Festival, but they had the film showing on the smallest screen at the festival so many people got turned away, including me. Peter Bogdanovich was doing a presentation about the film beforehand which I really wanted to hear. It would have been great if Bogdanovich was interviewed for a featurette on the DVD or to do a commentary track for the film.

I wish I would have known about that double feature at the Egyptian sooner. I've already committed myself to another engagement, but that is sure a great double bill.

7:10 PM  
Blogger J.C. Loophole said...

I am afraid that I too am somewhat contrarian- I think Citizen Kane's greatness stems mostly from it's technique and technical innovations rather than the script. That is where Casablanca has it all over Citizen Kane. Sometimes Kane seems deliberately slow as if Wells (whom I greatly admire and whose work I enjoy) is daring us to think faster than the film.
Ambersons on the other hand has, I think, a stronger story- but the current print or state that it is in, has the pacing and development permanently on "Too Slow". It is almost overwrought. But that is my opinion. My favorite Wells films are always his Shakespearian films like Othello, A Touch of Evil or a film that for some reason is considered a "Wells" film simply because he was in it- The Third Man. Very little monkeying around with the story- more focus on mood, techinique and the way to present the story- the things I consider him to be more of a genuis at in regards to film making.

11:38 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Glad I could share this news! Robby, I would have loved to hear Bogdanovich speak, it's a shame you couldn't get in!

J.C., it's especially nice to hear from you, hope all is going well! It's nice to know I'm not the only contrarian. My college impression of CITIZEN KANE was that it was self-consciously showy and lacking a very interesting story. I've always wondered what I was missing and whether I'd judge it differently from a fresh perspective.

Best wishes,

12:48 AM  

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