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Czech Republic & Slovakia


La Vie en Rose (Extended Version)

La Vie en Rose (Extended Version) Lowest new price: $7.24
Lowest used price: $4.25
List price: $14.97
Brand: HBO HOME VIDEO

Picturehouse and HBO Films present a critically-acclaimed biopic about the legendary international singing icon Edith Piaf, whose voice and talent captivated the world. Starring award-winner Marion Cotillard (A Very Long Engagement, A Good Year) in an astonishing performance, the film is a portrait of a remarkable artist born into poverty who survived using the only gift she had â€" her voice. Piaf’s tragic life was a constant battle to sing and survive, to live and love, with no regrets.

Edith Piaf is the subject of La Vie en Rose, director Olivier Dahan's powerful if emotionally redundant biographical film about the iconic French superstar whose life, as depicted here, seems to have been a numbing succession of tragedies interrupted on occasion by artistic triumph. Dahan's portrait begins with Piaf's stay in a brothel as a young girl. Left to the care of her grandmother (who runs the place) after her father pulls her away from a narcissistic mother, Piaf undergoes significant health problems and grows up to sing on the street in lieu of outright prostitution. The film pulses along with the usual biopic rhythms, with pivotal moments in the life of Piaf (played as an adult by Marion Cotillard) turning up regularly only to be smacked aside by the unseen hand of perpetual misfortune. There's the impresario (Gerard Depardieu) who recognizes Piaf's great but raw talent only to have a run-in with the criminal element around her. There's the heavyweight fighter (Marcel Cerdan) who becomes the love of Piaf's life but can't be with her. Drug addiction, random car accidents, tax problems, you name it, it's all here, topped by an unnerving revelation that pops up in La Vie en Rose's final moments. After awhile, with such a concentration of bad news squeezed into 140 minutes, one begins to wish Dahan had taken a more expansive approach to Piaf's life and times. But the film is never less than interesting, and the lead performance by Cotillard is often astonishing. --Tom Keogh

Features:

  • Condition: New
  • Format: DVD
  • AC-3; Closed-captioned; Color; Dolby; DVD; Subtitled; Widescreen; NTSC

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Fantastic Planet

Fantastic Planet Lowest new price: $15.63
Lowest used price: $15.96
List price: $24.95
Brand: FACETS VIDEO

René Laloux's mesmerising psychedelic sci-fi animated feature won the Special Jury Prize at the 1973 Cannes Film Festival and is a landmark of European animation. Based on Stefan Wul's novel Oms en série [Oms by the Dozen], Laloux's breathtaking vision was released in France as La Planète sauvage [The Savage Planet]; in the USA as Fantastic Planet; and immediately drew comparisons to Swift's Gulliver's Travels and Planet of the Apes (both the 1968 film and Boule's 1963 novel). Today, the film can be seen to prefigure much of the work of Hayao Miyazaki at Studio Ghibli (Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away) due to its palpable political and social concerns, cultivated imagination, and memorable animation techniques.

Fantastic Planet tells the story of Oms, a human-like species, kept as domesticated pets by an alien race of blue giants called Draags. The story takes place on the Draags' planet Ygam, where we follow our narrator, an Om called Terr, from infancy to adulthood. He manages to escape enslavement from a Draag learning device used to educate the savage Oms - and begins to organise an Om revolt. The imagination invested in the surreal creatures, music and sound design, and eerie landscapes, is immense and unforgettable. This release includes the early LaLoux short The Snails.


Features:

  • Brand Name: FACETS VIDEO Mfg#: 00005054
  • Shipping Weight: 0.20 lbs
  • Manufacturer:
  • Genre: Foreign Video - French
  • All music products are properly licensed and guaranteed authentic.

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Tristan and Isolde (Widescreen Edition)

Tristan and Isolde (Widescreen Edition) Lowest new price: $2.49
Lowest used price: $0.01
List price: $9.98
Brand: Twentieth Century Fox

From executive producer Ridley Scott (Gladiator) comes a sweeping, action-packed saga of epic battles, political intrigue and forbidden passion, set in a time when the lines between heroism and savagery were etched in fire and carved out with broadswords. After the fall of Rome, visionary warlord Marke (Rufus Sewell) seeks to unite the squabbling English tribes to form one strong nationand defeat brutal Irish King Donnchadh. But when Lord Marke?s greatest and most loyal knight, Tristan (James Franco), falls in love with Isolde (Sophia Myles), a beautiful Irish woman, it threatens to destroy the fragile truce and ignite a war. In the spirit of Braveheart and A Knight?s Tale, TRISTAN+ ISOLDE is a rousing tale of trust and treachery that will leave you breathless!

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Oliver Twist (2005)

Oliver Twist (2005) Lowest new price: $2.99
Lowest used price: $0.01
List price: $14.99
Brand: Generic

Roman Polanski directs the classic Charles Dickens story of a young orphan boy who gets involved with a gang of pickpockets in 19th Century London. Abandoned at an early age, Oliver Twist (Barney Clark) is forced to live in a workhouse lorded over by the awful Mr. Bumble, who cheats the boys of their meager rations. Desperate yet determined, Oliver makes his escape to the streets of London. Penniless and alone, he is lured into a world of crime by the sinister Fagin (Academy-Award® winner Sir Ben Kingsley) -- the mastermind of a gang of pint-sized pickpockets. Oliver's rescue by the kindly Mr. Brownlow is only the beginning of a series of adventures that lead him to the promise of a better life.

Features:

  • Twist by Polanski: The director reflects on the making of Oliver Twist
  • The Best of Twist: An in-depth look at the film through the sets, costumes, cinematography, editing, and music
  • Kidding with Oliver Twist: Meet the young stars as they discuss filming Oliver Twist

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Closely Watched Trains (The Criterion Collection)

Closely Watched Trains (The Criterion Collection) Lowest new price: $19.19
Lowest used price: $9.26
List price: $29.95
Brand: Criterion

At a village railway station in occupied Czechoslovakia, a bumbling dispatcher's apprentice longs to liberate himself from his virginity. Oblivious to the war and the resistance that surrounds him, this young man embarks on a journey of sexual awakening and self-discovery, encountering a universe of frustration, eroticism, and adventure within his sleepy backwater depot. Wry and tender, Academy Award®-winning Closely Watched Trains is a masterpiece of human observation and one of the best-loved films of the Czech New Wave.

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The Shop On Main Street (The Criterion Collection)

The Shop On Main Street (The Criterion Collection) Lowest new price: $18.18
Lowest used price: $5.99
List price: $29.95
Brand: KAMINSKA,IDA

An inept Czech peasant is torn between greed and guilt when the Nazi-backed bosses of his town appoint him "Aryan controller" of an old Jewish widow's button shop. Humor and tragedy fuse in this scathing exploration of one cowardly man's complicity in the horrors of a totalitarian regime. Made near the height of Soviet oppression in Czechoslovakia, The Shop on Main Street features intense editing and camera work which won it the Academy Award® for Best Foreign Film in 1965.

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Valerie and Her Week of Wonders (Valerie a týden divu)

Valerie and Her Week of Wonders (Valerie a týden divu) Lowest new price: $19.73
Lowest used price: $17.35
List price: $29.95
Brand: FACETS VIDEO

The line between fantasy and reality is blurred in this surreal and sexual horror tale from one of the Czech New Wave's top directors. After receiving a pair of bewitched earrings, a young girl's world is turned upside-down. Soon, vampires and carnal priests disrupt the girl's slumber, ravaging her innocence and awakening the woman within. Beautifully filmed.

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Divided We Fall

Divided We Fall Lowest new price: $3.44
Lowest used price: $2.19
List price: $24.96
Brand: POLIVKA,BOLEK

Boleslav Polivka, Anna Siskova. A half-hearted Czechoslovakian Nazi collaborator finds he must make a difficult decision when his former employer-a Jewish man-and his family ask him to hide them from the SS. 2000/color/117 min/PG-13/Czech/subtitled.

A daring comedy of ethics, Divided We Fall takes place during World War II in a small, Nazi-occupied town in Czechoslovakia. Josef and Maria, a childless couple, have withdrawn further and further from reality even as the war circles closer to their eerily quiet town. Josef's decision to sleep through a war he doesn't want to acknowledge is soon tested when the Jewish son of his former employer arrives in the middle of the night seeking refuge. David, the sole survivor from his family, escaped from a concentration camp in Poland and managed to return to the only place he knows in search of help. As they harbor David in their pantry over the next three years, Josef and Maria discover the depth of their resolve, forced to play the role of seeming collaborators in order to save themselves and David. Reminiscent more of Yugoslav filmmaker Emir Kustirica's devastating brand of black humor (Underground, Time of the Gypsies) than the saccharine Life Is Beautiful, to which it has been repeatedly compared, Divided We Fall achieves quite a lot, capturing the pervasive suspicion and betrayal of World War II through the unexpected guise of situation comedy. --Fionn Meade

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The Firemen's Ball (The Criterion Collection)

The Firemen's Ball (The Criterion Collection) Lowest new price: $15.73
Lowest used price: $12.00
List price: $29.95
Brand: FORMAN,MILOS

A milestone of the Czech New Wave, Milos Forman's first color film The Firemen's Ball (Horí, má panenko) is both a dazzling comedy and a provocative political satire. A hilarious saga of good intentions confounded, the story chronicles a firemen's ball where nothing goes right-from a beauty pageant whose reluctant participants embarrass the organizers to a lottery from which nearly all the prizes are pilfered. Presumed to be a commentary on the floundering Czech leadership, the film was "banned forever" in Czechoslovakia following the Russian invasion and prompted Forman's move to America.

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Tristan and Isolde (Full Screen Edition)

Tristan and Isolde (Full Screen Edition) Lowest new price: $4.99
Lowest used price: $0.01
List price: $9.98
Brand: Twentieth Century Fox

From executive producer Ridley Scott (Gladiator) comes a sweeping, action-packed saga of epic battles, political intrigue and forbidden passion, set in a time when the lines between heroism and savagery were etched in fire and carved out with broadswords. After the fall of Rome, visionary warlord Marke (Rufus Sewell) seeks to unite the squabbling English tribes to form one strong nationand defeat brutal Irish King Donnchadh. But when Lord Marke?s greatest and most loyal knight, Tristan (James Franco), falls in love with Isolde (Sophia Myles), a beautiful Irish woman, it threatens to destroy the fragile truce and ignite a war. In the spirit of Braveheart and A Knight?s Tale, TRISTAN+ ISOLDE is a rousing tale of trust and treachery that will leave you breathless!

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