Our friends over at the British Film Institute have sent over their announcement for their upcoming home media releases. There are quite a variety of films coming out, many that have been highly anticipated. As we get closer to their release we’ll have updated posts with more information, for now just kick back and check out the BFI Blu-ray releases for April through June 2018.
Following a theatrical and BFI Player release on February 23rd, Ingmar Bergman’s rarely seen 1971 masterpiece The Touch, starring Elliott Gould, Bibi Andersson and Max von Sydow, gets a worldwide Blu-ray/DVD premiere on April 23rd. A seemingly happy Swedish housewife and mother begin an adulterous affair with a foreign archaeologist who is working near her home. But he is an emotionally scarred man, a Jewish survivor from a concentration camp who found refuge in the U.S., and consequently, their relationship will be painfully difficult. Originally released in a full English language version, this presentation of The Touch is a new 2K restoration by the Swedish Film Institute from the original negatives of Bergman’s preferred Swedish/English cut.
Bergman’s 1975 opera The Magic Flute will be released on the same day (previously scheduled for February), also in a Dual Format Edition. Ingmar Bergman puts his indelible stamp on Mozart’s exquisite opera in this sublime rendering of one of the composer’s best-loved works: a celebration of love, forgiveness, and the brotherhood of man. The Magic Flute (Trollflöjten) stars Josef Köstlinger as Tamino, the young man determined to rescue a beautiful princess from the clutches of parental evil. Available for the first time on Blu-ray the BFI is proud to present this film from one of the world’s most acclaimed directors.
- Papageno (1935, 12 mins): short film from acclaimed director Lotte Reiniger (The Adventures of Prince Achmed)
- La Flute Magique (1946, 10 mins): short film by the award-winning director Paul Grimault
- In Mozart’s Footsteps (1938, 11 mins): a post-Anschluss travelogue of Mozart s Austria by Lady Dunn
- Fully illustrated booklet with new writing on the film, and full film credits
April 23rd also sees the home entertainment debut of the J B Priestley-scripted, Ealing Studio-produced They Came to a City (1944). Directed by Basil Dearden and starring John Clements and Googie Withers, a new 2K transfer will be released in a Dual Format Edition. Nine disparate Britons are transported to a mysterious city where, according to their class and disposition, they find themselves either in an earthly paradise of peace and equality or a hell starved of ambition and riches. A striking expression of post-war utopian impulses, this underrated British classic is presented here in a new 2K transfer from the best surviving 35mm element, and available for home entertainment viewing for the very first time. Directed by Basil Dearden (The Captive Heart, Victim) and starring John Clements, Googie Withers, and Raymond Huntley.
Woodfall: A Revolution in British Cinema is a major new box set, released in both Blu-ray and DVD formats, that contains some of the most iconic films of the 1960s British new wave.
Founded in 1958, Woodfall Films blazed a trail through British cinema with ground-breaking films from the likes of Tony Richardson, Karel Reisz, and Richard Lester, and launched the careers of home-grown actors including Albert Finney, Tom Courtenay, and Rita Tushingham. The BFI is celebrating the 60th Anniversary of Woodfall Films with a month-long season at BFI Southbank in April, followed on May 28th by these 8-disc box sets featuring the following films – many newly restored and on Blu-ray for the first time:
- Look Back in Anger (Tony Richardson, 1959)
- The Entertainer (Tony Richardson, 1960)
- Saturday Night and Sunday Morning (Karel Reisz, 1960)
- A Taste of Honey (Tony Richardson, 1961)
- The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner (Tony Richardson, 1962)
- Tom Jones (Tony Richardson, 1963) (New 4K digital restorations of the original theatrical version of the film and the 1989 Director’s Cut)
- Girl with Green Eyes (Desmond Davis, 1964)
- The Knack… and How to Get It (Richard Lester, 1965)
All films newly remastered for this release, excluding Saturday Night and Sunday Morning and The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner.
Scheduled for June 18th is a Dual Format Edition release of William Wyler’s 1961 hit The Children’s Hour. Based on Lillian Hellman’s ground-breaking 1934 play and nominated for 5 Academy Awards. The Children’s Hour is set at an exclusive girl’s school managed by best friends Audrey Hepburn and Shirley MacLaine. When a badly behaved student starts rumors that her teachers are in a lesbian relationship, there are serious and tragic repercussions for everyone involved. Directed by William Wyler (Ben Hur, Roman Holiday) and co-starring James Garner as Hepburn’s boyfriend, The Children’s Hour still stands as a powerful indictment of the malice of lies and rumors in society. This is the first time the film is available on Blu-ray in the UK.
Released on the same date will be Derek Jarman’s Jubilee (1978) – which comes out as a stand-alone edition to mark the film’s 40th anniversary, following its inclusion in next month’s release of the box set Jarman Volume One 1972-1986. Queen Elizabeth I and her occult aide Dr. John Dee (brilliantly played by Jenny Runacre and Richard O’Brien, respectively) travel into the future, encountering the megalomania of big business as well as gangs of violent, marauding killers. Director Derek Jarman doesn’t spare the shocks while electrifying punk rock numbers are delivered by Jayne County and Adam Ant. Newly available as a dual-format edition for the very first time, the film is a 2K remaster from the original camera negatives, and comes bolstered by an extensive array of extras.
Special Features and Technical Specs:
- BRAND NEW 2K REMASTER of the film from the original camera negative
- A Message from the Temple (1981, 5 mins)
- Toyah Wilcox: Being Mad (2014, 8 mins): The singer and actress looks back on her role in Jubilee
- Jordan remembers Jubilee (2018): Punk icon Jordan looks back on her friendship with Derek Jarman and the making if Jubilee
- Lee Drysdale remembers Jubilee (2018): Derek Jarman’s friend and, later collaborator Lee Drysdale recalls his unconventional involvement in the making of Jubilee
- Jubilee image gallery
- Fully illustrated booklet with writing on the film by Will Fowler, an original review and full film credits