Shirley (2020) Elisabeth Moss proves to be an inspired casting choice for the lead role of famed horror author, Shirley Jackson (The Haunting of Hill House). The film focuses on one portion of the author’s life as she attempts to write her great novel, while simultaneously contending with marital strife and the arrival of unwanted house-guests.
Spelling the Dream (2020) Four Indian American children are profiled as they vie for the grand prize in the Scripps National Spelling Bee. Sam Rega’s film is both inspiring and surprising in the tradition of the best documentary films.
Dykes, Camera, Action (2020) Nearly half a dozen filmmakers pay tribute to the contributions of lesbians in contemporary cinema. Caroline Berler directs this short but interesting film.
New to Blu-Ray:
An Unmarried Woman (1978) Jill Clayburgh gives a smashing, Oscar nominated performance in this tale of a woman whose tranquil life is upended after her husband (Michael Murphy) of sixteen years suddenly leaves. Simply put, it’s one of the best films of the latter half of the 1970s in this critic’s opinion. This welcome edition to the Criterion library includes carryover commentary from the original DVD, which is invaluable since the two participants, Clayburgh and writer-director, Paul Mazursky, are no longer with us. New features include an interview with Murphy and author Sam Wasson. Strongly recommended,
Cannery Row (1982) Writer-Director, David S. Ward, adapted John Steinbeck’s tale of the relationship between a down on his luck ball player (Nick Nolte) and a girl (Debra Winger) forced to work in a bordello in WWII era Monterey, California. The disc offers a stellar new transfer but no extras.
Brian’s Song (1971) James Caan and Billy Dee Williams star in one of the highest rated TV movies of all time, depicting the true life friendship between Chicago Bears teammates Brian Piccolo and Gayle Sayers. The disc boasts a new transfer and extras from the DVD edition.
Anne Frank Remembered (1995) Kenneth Branagh narrates this Oscar winning portrait of the tragic life and times of the author of one of history’s most famous published diaries.
Princess Caraboo (1994) Phoebe Cates stars in the true-life tale of a drifter who lands on the doorsteps of a wealthy family with claims to being a real life Princess. Shout’s new special edition contains lots of new bonus features.
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