3 Seijun Suzuki films head to Blu-ray

French home video distributor Elephant Films revealed on its Facebook page it will release three of famed Japanese director Seijun Suzuki’s films to the high definition format as part of its Cinema Master Class collection. Of the three, only Branded to Kill already got a release (from the Criterion Collection in 2011), while the two others, Detective Bureau 2-3: Go to Hell, Bastards! and Youth of the Beast will be new to the format.

Unfortunately, the Cinema Master Class’ previous releases indicate that it is unlikely these discs will hold English subtitles, but this is definitely good news for anyone who masters Japanese or French and a potential sign that other distributors around the world may get these films out there as Elephant Films indicates the copies are “pristine”.

Not as widely known as other Japanese masters, the 91 year-old Suzuki (who retired in 2006) is nevertheless an important and influential figure of the medium, particularly celebrated for his surreal gangster films, whose work has been championed by filmmakers such as Jim Jarmusch (Broken Flowers), Takeshi Kitano (Zatoichi), Wong Kar-wai (In the Mood for Love) and Quentin Tarantino (Pulp Fiction).

The films will hit French (and online) stores on November 4th. Check out the subtitled trailer for Youth of the Beast after the jump and sound off in the comments. Continue reading

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Venice Film Festival winners

The 65th Venice International Film Festival, one of the most prestigious in the world with Cannes and Berlin, closed on September 6th. While Darren Aronofsky’s The Wrestler won the festival’s biggest prize, if you take a look at all the “collateral awards”, quite a few films emerge.

Thus the Italian film Giovanna’s Father and the Ethiopian filmTeza both garnered 5 awards while the Italian Pranzo Di Ferragosto, the American The Hurt Locker, and the Italian/French/Romanian Pa-ra-da collected 4 awards each. Additionally, the Italian documentary Below Sea Level won 3 awards and the Russian Paper Soldier, the American Vegas: Based On A True Story, the Sri Lankan Machan, the Japanese Ponyo On The Cliff By The Sea and the French films Stella and L’Apprenti each got 2 awards.

View the full list of winners right here:

Main Prizes

Golden Lion for best film: Darren Aronofsky’s The Wrestler

Silver Lion for best director: Aleksei German MI. for Paper Soldier (Bumaznyj Soldat)

Special Jury Prize: Haile Gerima’s Teza

Coppa Volpi for best actor: Silvio Orlando in Giovanna’s Father (Il Papà Di Giovanna)

Coppa Volpi for best actress: Dominique Blanc in L’Autre

Marcello Mastroianni Prize for best emerging actor or actress: Jennifer Lawrence in Burning Plain

Osella for best cinematography: Alisher Khamidhodjaev and Maxim Drozdov for Paper Soldier

Osella for best screenplay: Haile Gerima for Teza

Special Lion for overall work: Werner Schroeter

Luigi De Laurentis Award for debut film: Gianni Di Gregorio’s Pranzo Di Ferragosto

Horizon Prizes

Premio Orizzonti: Lav Diaz’s Melancholia

Premio Orizzonti Doc: Gianfranco Rosi’s Below Sea Level

Special Mention to: Philippe Grandrieux’s Un Lac and Huang Wenhai’s Women

Short Film Prizes

Golden Lion for best short film: Carlos Armella’s Tierra Y Pan

Special Mention to: Karchi Perlmann’s Vascora

U.I.P. Award for best European short film: Joost Van Ginkel’s Zand

Collateral Awards after the jump

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