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Janus Films (The Criterion Collection)
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Amarcord
Part of the Series: Janus Italian Cinema Collection
This carnivalesque portrait of provincial Italy during the fascist period, the most personal film from Federico Fellini, satirizes the director's youth and turns daily life into a circus of social rituals, adolescent desires, male fantasies, and political subterfuge, all set to Nina Rota's classic, nostalgia-tinged score. The Academy Award-winning Amarcord…
Major Barbara
Part of the Series: The Janus British Collection
Filmed in London in 1941, during the Blitz, Major Barbara emerged from a troubled production to become a major success for George Bernard Shaw and producer-director Gabriel Pascal. Pygmalion's Wendy Hiller returns, this time as one of Shaw's most memorable and controversial characters, Barbara Undershaft, a Salvation Army officer who…
The Lord of the Flies
Part of the Series: The Janus British Collection
In the hands of the renowned experimental theater director Peter Brook, William Golding's legendary novel about the primitivism lurking beneath civilization becomes a film as raw and ragged as the lost boys at its center. Taking an innovative documentary-like approach, Brook shot Lord of the Flies with an off-the-cuff naturalism,…
L'avventura
Part of the Series: Janus Italian Cinema Collection
A girl mysteriously disappears on a yachting trip. While her lover and her best friend search for her across Italy, they begin an affair. Antonioni's penetrating study of the idle upper class offers stinging observations on spiritual isolation and the many meanings of love. Additional Reading: http://www.criterion.com/current/posts/99-l-avventura http://www.criterion.com/current/posts/828-l-avventura
Cleo From 5 to 7
Part of the Series: Janus French New Wave Collection
Agnes Varda eloquently captures Paris in the sixties with this real-time portrait of a singer (Corinne Marchand) set adrift in the city as she awaits test results of a biopsy. A chronicle of the minutes of one woman's life, CLEO FROM 5 TO 7 is a spirited mix of vivid…
The Music Room
With The Music Room (Jalsaghar), Satyajit Ray brilliantly evokes the crumbling opulence of the world of a fallen aristocrat (the beloved actor Chhabi Biswas) desperately clinging to a fading way of life. His greatest joy is the music room in which he has hosted lavish concerts over the years--now a…
The Home and the World
Both a romantic-triangle tale and a philosophical take on violence in times of revolution, The Home and the World (Ghare Baire), set in early twentieth-century Bengal, concerns an aristocratic but progressive man who, in insisting on broadening his more traditional wife's political horizons, drives her into the arms of his…
Divorce Italian Style
Part of the Series: Janus Italian Cinema Collection
Baron Ferdinando Cefalu (Marcello Mastroianni) longs to marry his nubile young cousin Angela (Stefania Sandrelli), but one obstacle stands in his way: his fatuous and fawning wife, Rosalia (Daniela Rocca). His solution? Since divorce is illegal, he hatches a plan to lure his spouse into the arms of another and…
The Red Balloon
Albert Lamorisse's exquisite The Red Balloon remains one of the most beloved children's films of all time. In this deceptively simple, nearly wordless tale, a young boy discovers a stray balloon, which seems to have a mind of its own, on the streets of Paris. The two become inseparable, yet…
Rome Open City
Part of the Series: Janus Italian Cinema Collection
This was Roberto Rossellini's revelation, a harrowing drama about the Nazi occupation of Rome and the brave few who struggled against it. Though told with more melodramatic flair than the other films that would form this trilogy and starring some well-known actors--Aldo Fabrizi as a priest helping the partisan cause…
Seven Samurai
One of the most thrilling movie epics of all time, SEVEN SAMURAI (Shichinin no samurai) tells the story of a sixteenth-century village whose desperate inhabitants hire the eponymous warriors to protect them from invading bandits. This three-hour ride from Akira Kurosawa -- featuring legendary actors Toshiro Mifune and Takashi Shimura…
The Ruling Class
Part of the Series: The Janus British Collection
Peter O'Toole gives a tour-de-force performance as Jack, a man "cured" of believing he's God--only to become Jack the Ripper incarnate. Based on Peter Barnes's irreverent play, this darkly comic indictment of Britain's class system peers behind the closed doors of English aristocracy. Insanity, sadistic sarcasm, and black comedy--with just…