No, you’re not seeing double! This week’s new releases are dominated by great double features. There’s also plenty of classic films, recent theatrical offerings and TV shows now available. See for yourself!
First, Jack Lemmon and Oscar-winning Walter Matthau star in Billy Wilder’s hilarious, cynical fable “The Fortune Cookie,” about a TV cameraman who is injured while shooting a football game and his brother-in-law, a conniving lawyer with a plan to collect $1 million in insurance money. With Ron Rich, Cliff Osmond, and Judi West. Next, three former American GIs–each believing they have fathered an Italian woman’s daughter during World War II–learn about one another during a reunion of their old outfit in Italy. Soon, they scramble to seek their grown daughter and keep the secret from their wives. “Buona Sera, Mrs. Campbell” stars Gina Lollobrigida, Phil Silvers, Peter Lawford, Telly Savalas, Lee Grant, and Shelley Winters.
First, epic battle sequences and a fine performance by Richard Burton highlight this sweeping historical drama about the ancient Macedonian military leader “Alexander The Great,” who united the Grecian tribes and went on to conquer most of the known world before he was 30. With Fredric March, Claire Bloom, Peter Cushing, and Peter Wyngarde. Next, “Solomon And Sheba” stars Yul Brynner (replacing Tyrone Power, who died early in the filming) as Solomon, the Israelite king who falls in love with the sensuous queen of Sheba (Gina Lollobrigida), much to the dismay of his brother Adonijah (George Sanders) and at the risk of harming his people. David Farrar, Marisa Pavan co-star; King Vidor directs.
The original “American Pie” gang returns in this uproarious entry in the comedy series. A high school reunion brings Jim (Jason Biggs), Michelle (Alyson Hannigan), Stifler (Seann William Scott), and the rest of their pals back together. But can the now grown-up group of friends recapture the old magic while dealing the problems of adulthood? Tara Reid, Mena Suvari, Chris Klein, Jennifer Coolidge, and Eugene Levy co-star.
All 24 episodes from season four–including “Psycho Therapy,” “Dinner and a Showdown,” “It Had to Be Ew,” “Parannoyed,” and “Everybody Loves Becker”–are featured in a three-disc set.
When an aspiring novelist (Paul Dano) took a job in a Boston homeless shelter, he didn’t anticipate that one of his first charity cases would be his long-estranged, hard-drinking, self-absorbed, failed writer/cabbie father (Robert De Niro). Compelling adaptation of Nick Flynn’s “Another Bullsh*t Night in Suck City” co-stars Julianne Moore, Olivia Thirlby, Lili Taylor.
First, mad scientist Vincent Price has constructed an army of beautiful bikini-clad robots as part of his scheme to control the world’s richest men, and only bumbling secret agents Frankie Avalon and Dwayne Hickman can stop him in “Dr. Goldfoot And The Bikini Machine,” a wild sci-fi spy spoof. With a cameo by Annette Funicello and a title song by The Supremes. Next, the diabolical doctor (Price) and his lovely robots are back, but this time the girls are programmed to blow up near key NATO officers, and Fabian is the agent who must stop Goldfoot from triggering World War III. Sexy and stylish sequel “Dr. Goldfoot And The Girl Bombs” was directed by Italian horror maestro Mario Bava.
A San Francisco nurse (Nina Foch) is plagued by recurring nightmares where she witnesses a man fatally assaulted on the Golden Gate Bridge. She takes her problems to a psychologist (William Wright) who’s embroiled in efforts for wartime intelligence, and discovers to her shock that he is the victim from her dreams. Early directorial effort for Budd Boetticher co-stars Otto Kruger; look for Shelley Winters as a taxi driver.
All 13 episodes from the second season–including “The Visiting Priest Mystery,” “The Stone Killer Mystery,” “The Blind Man’s Bluff Mystery,” “The Confidence Mystery,” and “The Passionate Painter Mystery”–are featured in a three-disc set.
First, after his millionaire employer dies suddenly, Robert Mitchum embarks on an exotic investigation to Vienna and Stockholm to uncover secrets about his life. This “Foreign Intrigue” leads Mitchum to discover his boss’s hidden activities involving blackmail…and Nazis. Riveting thriller co-stars Genevieve Page, Ingrid Thulin. Next, inspired by the Graham Greene novel, the intriguing drama “The Quiet American” stars Audie Murphy as a naive American attempting to help the South Vietnamese in their struggles against French colonialism and communists from the North. After encountering a cynical British journalist, Murphy becomes swept up in a maze of politics and jealousy that results in tragedy. With Michael Redgrave, Claude Dauphin.
Star Nicol Williamson and director Tony Richardson bring their successful stage version of the world’s most famous play to the screen, with striking results. Along with Williamson as Hamlet are Anthony Hopkins as Claudius, Judy Parfitt as Gertrude, and rock chanteuse Marianne Faithfull as Ophelia; look for Anjelica Huston as a lady of court.
First, the Billy Wilder/I.A.L. Diamond farce “Irma La Douce” stars Jack Lemmon as a bumbling Paris gendarme who is fired for raiding the red light district (where his chief is a customer) and becomes an equally bumbling pimp for streetwalker Shirley MacLaine. Co-stars Lou Jacobi; Oscar-winning music by Andre Previn. Next, Wilder’s touching and funny romantic farce “Avanti!” focuses on a stodgy corporate executive (Lemmon) who’s in Italy to claim the body of his father, who has been killed in an accident. There he meets the daughter of his father’s mistress (Juliet Mills), and the two begin their own affair on their parents’ favorite little island. Clive Revill, Edward Andrews co-star.
First, Dustin Hoffman gives an electrifying performance as the controversial comic genius “Lenny” Bruce. Bob Fosse directs this fascinating, insightful look into the life of the man who truly changed America’s comic sensibilities. Valerie Perrine delivers fine supporting work as Bruce’s wife; Jan Miner, Stanley Beck co-star. Next, Gregory Hines is perfectly cast as legendary entertainer Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, who danced his way to fame in vaudeville and as Shirley Temple’s frequent screen co-star, but whose career was threatened by racial prejudice and his penchant for gambling and womanizing. Moving made-for-TV biodrama also stars Kimberly Elise, Peter Riegert.
First, this lush filming of the hit Broadway musical “Man Of La Mancha” follows Cervantes’ errant knight, Don Quixote, and his quest for “The Impossible Dream.” Peter O’Toole stars as Quixote and his creator, along with James Coco, Sophia Loren, and Harry Andrews. Songs include “Dulcinea,” “It’s All the Same.” Next, “The Fantasticks”–an Off-Broadway mainstay since its debut in 1960 and the longest-running musical in stage history–is deftly transferred to the screen by director Michael Ritchie. Tom Jones and Harvey Schmidt’s timeless boy-meets-girl story features such tunes as “Try to Remember,” “Much More,” “Soon It’s Gonna Rain,” and more. Joel Grey, Barnard Hughes, Jean Louisa Kelly, and Joseph McIntyre star.
Competition among prize piano students is fierce, but the rewards are great…or are they? Aging prodigy Richard Dreyfuss has to marshal his talents for his best and last shot at international recognition, but his burgeoning feelings for gifted rival Amy Irving weren’t supposed to be part of the score. Winning romantic tale bolstered by stirring performance sequences co-stars Lee Remick, Sam Wanamaker.
In 1937 China, an American mortician (Christian Bale) come to Nanking to deal with a monk’s burial finds himself trapped by the Japanese occupation of the city. He poses as a priest in a bid to save his own skin, but when a cluster of schoolgirls and a group of prostitutes each seek the sanctuary of the church against the coming massacre, the faux father is faced with terrible choices. Director Zhang Yimou’s affecting historical drama also stars Ni Ni, Shigeo Kobayashi, Tong Dawei.
First, George C. Scott gives a bravura performance as a New York City surgeon struggling with his professional and private lives amidst the looniness of the inner workings of “The Hospital.” Diana Rigg, Barnard Hughes, and Richard Dysart also star in this lacerating black comedy; scripted by Paddy Chayefsky. Next, not the kind to just take the money and run, criminal genius Scott steals a whole bank from its foundations in “Bank Shot,” the fast-paced romp based on Donald E. Westlake’s novel. With Joanna Cassidy, Bob Balaban, and Sorrell Booke.
Stage illusion designer Vincent Price was finally ready to showcase his creations himself, until the employer that profited from selling his tricks to established magicians conjured up a court order and made his dreams vanish. The disillusioned illusionist goes after those who wronged him, ready to pull bloody vengeance out of his hat. Eva Gabor, Patrick O’Neal co-star; John Brahm directs.
First, sandwiched in between the 1974 original and the 2009 remake comes this made-for-TV version of “The Taking Of Pelham One Two Three,” in which Vincent D’Onofrio leads a team of hijackers on a quest to commandeer a New York subway train for a massive ransom. Edward James Olmos and Lorraine Bracco play the police officers assigned to the tricky hostage situation; Donnie Wahlberg, Richard Schiff also star. Next, Jon Voight and Eric Roberts are two escaped convicts stowing away on a “Runaway Train” barreling through the Alaskan countryside. Crackling thriller that never lets up also stars Rebecca De Mornay, Kenneth McMillan; co-written by Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa.
Silent fans are sure to enjoy this collection of rare films that tackled social issues. The program includes “The Inside Of The White Slave Traffic” (1913), the surviving two-reel version of a notorious picture that revealed the horrors of forced prostitution; “Children Of Eve” (1915), which addressed harsh working conditions with a stunning re-creation of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire of 1911; and “The Devil’s Needle” (1916), which stars Norma Talmadge as a model addicted to morphine.
For details and availability of more of this week’s new releases, click here.
Here’s a look at last week’s DVD and Blu-ray releases.