Janus American Independents Collection

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15 videos in this collection

A Woman Under the Influence
This uncompromising portrait of domestic turmoil details the emotional breakdown of a suburban housewife and her family's struggle to save her from herself. Gena Rowlands and Peter Falk give unforgettably…
George Washington
Over the course of one hot summer, a group of children in the decaying rural South must confront a tangle of difficult choices. An ambitiously constructed, elegantly photographed meditation on…
Mala Noche
With its low budget and lush black-and-white imagery, Gus Van Sant's debut feature Mala Noche heralded an idiosyncratic, provocative new voice in American independent film. Set in Van Sant's hometown…
Down By Law
Director Jim Jarmusch followed up his brilliant breakout film Stranger Than Paradise with another, equally beloved portrait of loners and misfits in the American landscape. When fate brings together three…
The Honeymoon Killers
Martha Beck (Shirley Stoler) is sullen, overweight and heartbreakingly alone. Desperate for affection, she joins Aunt Carrie's Friendship Club and strikes up a correspondence with Ray Fernandez (Tony Lo Bianco),…
Mystery Train
Aloof teenage Japanese tourists, a frazzled Italian widow, and a disgruntled British immigrant all converge in the city of dreams--which, in Mystery Train,from Jim Jarmusch, is Memphis. Made with its…
Wise Blood
In this acclaimed adaptation of the first novel by legendary Southern writer Flannery O'Connor, John Huston vividly brings to life her poetic world of American eccentricity. Brad Dourif, in an…
Border Radio
Before carving out a niche as one of the most distinct voices in nineties American cinema, Allison Anders made her debut, alongside codirectors and fellow UCLA film school students Kurt…
Clean, Shaven
Lodge Kerrigan began his succession of utterly unique, visually and aurally dazzling character studies with the raw, ravaging Clean, Shaven. A compelling headfirst dive into the mindscape of a schizophrenic…
Faces
John Cassavetes puts a disintegrating marriage under the microscope in the searing Faces. Shot in high-contrast 16 mm black and white, the film follows the futile attempts of the captain…
Opening Night
While in the midst of rehearsals for her latest play, Broadway actor Myrtle Gordon (Gena Rowlands) witnesses the accidental death of an adoring young fan, after which she begins to…
Paris, Texas
New German Cinema pioneer Wim Wenders brings his keen eye for landscape to the American Southwest in Paris, Texas, a profoundly moving character study written by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Sam…
Shadows
John Cassavetes's directorial debut revolves around a romance in New York City between Lelia (Lelia Goldoni), a light- skinned black woman, and Tony (Anthony Ray), a white man. The relationship…
Stranger Than Paradise
Rootless Hungarian emigre Willie (John Lurie), his pal Eddie (Richard Edson), and visiting sixteen-year-old cousin Eva (Eszter Balint) always manage to make the least of any situation, whether aimlessly traversing…
The Killing of a Chinese Bookie
John Cassavetes engages with film noir in his own inimitable style with The Killing of a Chinese Bookie. Ben Gazzara brilliantly portrays a gentleman's club owner, Cosmo Vitelli, desperately committed…

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The Emperor Jones
Of all Paul Robeson's eleven starring film performances, by far his most iconic was his breakthrough in the big-screen adaptation of Eugene O'Neill'sThe Emperor Jones (1933). He was already a legend for his stage incarnation of Brutus Jones, a Pullman porter who powers his way to the rule of a…
Mister Johnson
A decade after he broke through with Breaker Morant, Australian director Bruce Beresford made another acclaimed film about the effects of colonialism on the individual. In a performance that earned him the Berlin Film Festival's Silver Bear for best actor, Maynard Eziashi plays the title character, a Nigerian villager eager…
The Honeymoon Killers
Martha Beck (Shirley Stoler) is sullen, overweight and heartbreakingly alone. Desperate for affection, she joins Aunt Carrie's Friendship Club and strikes up a correspondence with Ray Fernandez (Tony Lo Bianco), a suave, charismatic smooth talker who could be the man of her dreams--or a wicked con artist bound for trouble.…
Mr. Arkadin
Orson Welles's Mr. Arkadin (a.k.a. Confidential Report) tells the story of an elusive billionaire who hires an American smuggler to investigate his past, leading to a dizzying descent into a cold-war European landscape. The film's history is also marked by this vertigo. There are at least eight Mr. Arkadins: three…
Solaris
Ground control has been receiving mysterious transmissions from the three remaining residents of the Solaris space station. When cosmonaut and psychologist Kris Kelvin is dispatched to investigate, he experiences the same strange phenomena that afflict the Solaris crew, sending him on a voyage into the darkest recesses of his consciousness.…
Ivan the Terrible, Part 1
Navigating the deadly waters of Stalinist politics, Eisenstein was able to film two parts of his planned trilogy about the troubled sixteenth-century tsar who united Russia. Visually stunning and powerfully acted, Ivan the Terriblecharts the rise to power and descent into terror of this veritable dictator. Though pleased with the…
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…
Watership Down
With this passion project, screenwriter-producer-director Martin Rosen brilliantly achieved what had been thought nearly impossible: a faithful big-screen adaptation of Richard Adams's classic British dystopian novel about a community of rabbits under terrible threat from modern forces. With its naturalistic hand-drawn animation, dreamily expressionistic touches, gorgeously bucolic background design, and…
Janus American Mid-Century Collection
A collection of films from American Mid-Century from Criterion Collection
The Devil and Daniel Webster
Jabez Stone is a hard-working farmer trying to make an honest living, but a streak of bad luck tempts him to do the unthinkable: bargain with the Devil himself. For seven years of good fortune, Stone promises "Mr. Scratch" his soul when the contract ends. When the troubled farmer begins…
The Browning Version
Part of the Series: The Janus British Collection
Michael Redgrave gives the performance of his career in Anthony Asquith's adaptation of Terence Rattigan's unforgettable play. Redgrave portrays Andrew Crocker-Harris, an embittered, middle-aged schoolmaster who begins to feel that his life has been a failure. Diminished by poor health, a crumbling marriage, and the derision of his pupils, the…