May 01, 2006

Notes from a DVD Geek

by Jeremy Lassen

It’s a busy month at Borderlands, with World Horror swinging into town.  Koji Suzuki is one of the Guests of Honor. . . so be sure to check out the original Ringu, Ringu 2, and Ringu 0 movies, which were based on his novels.  The Ringu Anthology has all three films in one package.

Other Asian horror films that should not be missed: the Korean horror trilogy is now complete:  Whispering Corridors, Memento Mori, and Wishing Stairs are all out on DVD in the States; three movies concerning a cursed boarding school.  Creepy, ghostly, and filled with nasty murders.  Excellent stuff.

Moving back to Japan, the director of The Grudge tackles a reversal of H. P. Lovecraft’s The Outsider, in the movie Marebito.

Touching on some Italian horror. . . be sure to check out Dario Argento’s The Card Player. . .his most recent Giallo flick, and stack it up against his first movie, The Bird With the Crystal Plumage, which recently had a super-califragalistic-extra-special DVD release.  If Argento doesn’t do it for you, be sure to check out some Fulci and Bava films!

And if you want to take it back to the old school, be sure to check out Robert Wise’s classic haunted house movie, The Haunting, based on Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House.  This was an excellent, bigger budget, bigger cast homage to his early work with Val Lewton.

Another Lewton alumnus, Jacques Tourneur, turned in a Lewton throwback in 1957:  Night of the Demon, (AKA Curse of the Demon) which was an adaptation of M. R. James’s “Casting the Runes.”  The DVD features both the original British version of the film (Night of the Demon), and the shorter US version, (Curse of the Demon).  Very effective, and highly underrated.

We are starting to carry more anime in our DVD section, as well.  In addition to all the Miazaki films, we are carrying a wide selection of feature-length movies and TV material.  One Hentai-ish horror feature from the producers of Legend of the Overfiend is Mystery of the Necronomicon.  Not many tentacles in this one, and the Lovecraft connections are tenuous at best, but there is some over-the-top sex, and lots of murders, and some eyeball scooping.  Silly fun.

Another, less risqué anime title is Le Portrait De Petite Cossette, which is a surreal little story of the ghost of a girl trapped in an antique crystal goblet, who can be seen by the young proprietor of an antique store, who inevitably becomes obsessed with her.  Strange things ensue.  This one was weirdly haunting.

We are slowly expanding our anime section, with an emphasis on quality over quantity, and also with an emphasis on original video animations and feature-length movies.  If you have any suggestions of anime titles that we should be stocking, or that I should be watching, please drop me a line.

Until next month (which I hope proves to be much less hectic then this month), keep flipping those disks.

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