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21st December, 2017

Eureka's Review of 2017

Steve-Eureka

We kicked off 2017 in JANUARY with German silent masterpiece Varieté, E.A. Dupont’s crime of passion set in the circus milieu starring Emil Jannings, was released in a digitally restored 2K Dual Format edition as part of The Masters of Cinema Series, and a fine addition to Eureka’s cannon of outstanding silent cinema.  Another silent, and one of the most iconic masterpieces in cinema history, Das Cabinet des Dr Caligari was also re-released in a new Limited Edition 2-Disc Blu-ray SteelBook, featuring a bonus Blu-ray disc containing the 2014 documentary From Caligari to Hitler, exploring the social and cultural impact of German Cinema during the Weimar Republic. Also released in a Limited edition SteelBook was Osamu Tezuka’s Metropolis, the spectacular anime based on the 1949 Metropolis manga, itself inspired by the 1927 German silent film of the same name.  Combined sales (with the standard edition release in March) helped make it become one of Eureka’s biggest sellers of the year. Completing the January line up was Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s Creepy, another big seller for Eureka, and a 30th Anniversary Digitally Restored Dual Format edition of La Bamba, released as part of the Eureka Classics range.

 

Joining The Masters of Cinema Series on Blu-ray in FEBRUARY was Fred Zinnemann’s A Man For All Seasons, winner of six Academy Awards and starring a legendary cast that includes Paul Scofield and Orson Welles, and Cover Girl, Charles Vidor’s dazzling 1944 Technicolor musical starring Rita Hayworth and Gene Kelly. Also released on Blu-ray, Finding Forrester, the powerful and unforgettable drama, from Gus Van Sant, about the unique relationship between an eccentric reclusive novelist, William Forrester (Sean Connery) and a gifted athlete, Jamal Wallace (Rob Brown) who has writing aspirations of his own.

 

MARCH was a big month for Eureka as we welcomed Paul Laverty to the Curzon Bloomsbury in London for the launch of the theatrical campaign for The Olive Tree, Icíar Bollaín’s inspirational and poignant story of a vibrant, determined young woman on a journey.  The film continued to screen at venues across the UK & Ireland throughout the year, and has become one of Eureka’s biggest success stories at the box office.  This was also the month that saw the release of Eureka’s biggest selling title of the year in the shape of Fright Night, Tom Holland’s iconic 1980s vampire classic starring Chris Sarandon, William Ragsdale and Roddy McDowall.  Completing the March line up was No Second Chance, the TV-adaptation of Harlan Coben’s bestselling book, the standard release of Osamu Tezuka’s Metropolis, and Two Rode Together, John Ford’s story of love and war in the Wild Wild West, starring James Stewart, Shirley Jones and Richard Widmark.

 

Two big additions to The Masters of Cinema Series came in APRIL in the shape of Hard Times , Walter Hill’s two-fisted action drama featuring Charles Bronson at his explosive best, And Drunken Master, the Kung-Fu Classic starring the undisputed Godfather of Martial Arts Action-Comedy Jackie Chan in a no-holds-barred fight fest like none other.  The Blue Lagoon released on Blu-ray completed the home video line up, whilst in cinemas we welcomed greek filmmaker Argyris Papadimitropoulos to the ICA, to help launch the theatrical release of Suntan, an unpredictable psychological drama, full of suspense and humour, set on a hedonistic Greek Island.

 

In MAY we were honoured to work with the Born Free Foundation and meet Virginia McKenna, who appeared on the BBC’s The One Show in support of our Blu-ray release of Born Free, giving the title as massive boost and helping to make it one of the year’s biggest releases. Taiwanese auteur Hou Hsiao-hsien was welcomed to The Masters of Cinema Series with Daughter of the Nile, a rich and poignant drama about a young woman struggling to support her family amidst the violent and neon-soaked milieu of 1980’s Taipei, and The Eureka Classics range welcomed The Entity, the ultimate story of supernatural terror starring Barbara Hershey.  The BBC TV Series The Nanny, and the Dual Format release of The Olive Tree, completed the month’s home video line up, whilst in cinemas we released Harmonium, Kôji Fukada’s subtle, slow-burning thriller steeped in tragedy.

 

JUNE commenced with our fourth theatrical release of the year, a new 2K restoration of the 1921 film, Der Müde Tod, Fritz Lang’s dizzying blend of German romanticism, orientalism, and expressionism.  On home video the big Masters of Cinema release was the critically acclaimed Death In The Garden, Luis Buñuel’s pulsating adventure film was released on Blu-ray for the first time anywhere in the world. Dual Format re-releases of The Murderer Lives At 21 and Bakumatsu Taiyô-den and a home video release of Harmonium, completed the month’s releases. The biggest news story for June however, was the announcement of our new world cinema sub-label with the brand name Montage Pictures, which focuses on delivering ground-breaking and thought-provoking world cinema from new and upcoming directors. and presented with the same level of reverence and respect that has been shown to The Masters of Cinema Series. 

 

For the OPPORTUNITY TO WIN three titles of your choosing (subject to availability) from our year's releases, let us know what your favourite Eureka release was, in our END OF YEAR POLL.  Enter HERE [Please note that as of 11 January 2018 the COMPETITION has CLOSED.  No further entries will be accepted]

 

The big release for JULY was Westfront 1918 and Kameradschaft, a pair of strongly anti-war titles that combined elements of Expressionism and New Objectivity to stunning effect. Both these titles became available for the first time ever on Blu-ray in a Dual Format edition as part of the Masters of Cinema Series. The month also saw the home video release of Der Müde Tod, a re-issue of Man with a Movie Camera and a DVD Supermarket exclusive of Park Hoon-jung’s The Tiger.

 

AUGUST presented us with three Masters of Cinema releases.  Alongside a re-issue of The Passion of Joan of Arc, came a Dual Format edition of The Mourning Forest, Naomi Kawase’s powerful blend of nature and traditional Japanese storytelling, and the critically acclaimed Dual Format release of The Saga of Anatahan, Josef von Sternberg’s vulnerable tale of human trauma, survival and redemption.

 

SEPTEMBER was a mammoth month for releases.  The home video release of Suntan lead the way, alongside SteelBook editions of The Entity, Enemy Mine and The Human Centipede Trilogy.  Lubitsch in Berlin, an essential collection of early German silents that showcases the extraordinary range, subtlety and innovation of Ernst Lubitsch, became available on Blu-ray for the first time. For fans of Professor Noel Fitzpatrick, Seasons 1-8 of The Supervet in their entirety, plus the Summer and Bionic Specials were released on DVD containing over 48 hours of content.  The highest selling home video release of the month, however, was Journey to the Center of the Earth on Blu-ray.  Jules Verne’s classic novel, was brought to the screen in this thrilling adventure about a band of intrepid explorers descending to the hidden reaches of our world.  Meanwhile in cinemas, Re:Born, a breath-taking, no-frills martial arts film featuring fast, furious and expertly choreographed fight sequences, starring Tak Sakaguchi, premiered in the UK at the Fighting Spirit Film Festival, and Kills on Wheels, an inventive, action-packed coming-of-age story of friendship, loyalty and revenge, was released in selected cinemas across the UK.

 

OCTOBER was almost as busy as September, with a plethora of Eureka acquisitions screening at UK festivals:  Strangled received its UK premiere at the 61st London Film Festival, Spanish war film, Rescue Under Fire,  and Vietnamese horror, The Housemaid, premiered at the Cambridge Film Festival, King Hu’s Legend of the Mountain premiered in Brighton at Cine-City, Sion Sono’s Tag played the horror festivals, and there were screenings of New World in London and around the country as part of the Korean Film Festival.  On home video Capture Kill Release, a shocking blend of sadistic horror and suburban drama was released on DVD.  The Party, Blake Edwards’ fish-out-of-water, comedy cult classic starring Peter Sellers, and The Vikings, Richard Fleischer’s swashbuckling, historical adventure starring Kirk Douglas, Tony Curtis, Ernest Borgnine & Janet Leigh, both joined the Eureka Classics range in Blu-ray editions. Last but not least in celebration of the film's 90th Anniversary year, we released a Limited Edition Boxed Set edition of Metropolis.

 

With no home video releases in December, NOVEMBER became our last month for releases in 2017. The biggest release of the month was without doubt Buster Keaton: 3 Films, a collection of essential films from one of the greats of cinema operating at the height of his powers, featuring Sherlock Jr., The General and Steamboat Bill, Jr.  Sion Sono’s Tag, a dreamlike, mind-melting blend of action and fantasy, was another biggie, once released in a Dual Format edition.  The month was completed with a Blu-ray release of Manina [The Lighthouse-Keeper’s Daughter], starring screen icon Brigitte Bardot in one of her first ever on-screen performances, and the full release on both DVD and Blu-ray of The Tiger: An Old Hunter’s Tale, a breathtaking action adventure from one of Korea’s finest writer-directors, Park Hoon-jungMeanwhile Strangled, a social, political and psychological thriller set in the provincial Hungary of the 1960s at the height of socialism, was released in UK cinemas .

 

For the OPPORTUNITY TO WIN three titles of your choosing (subject to availability) from our year's releases, let us know what your favourite Eureka release was, in our END OF YEAR POLL.  Enter HERE [Please note that as of 11 January 2018 the COMPETITION has CLOSED.  No further entries will be accepted]

@mastersofcinema

@eurekavideo

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