18 June 2024
Rock Hudson and Jane Wyman in All That Heaven Allows (1955)

March Criterion Collection Slate Will Be Melodramatic

Just over a weeks time it will be 2023 and The Criterion Collection are already focused on the March 2023 slate. With help from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment the month will be one of Technicolor and melodrama.

We will have a Douglas Sirk double bill with Jane Wyman and Rock Hudson. Both released on Blu-ray on 13th March with All That Heaven Allows. This heartbreakingly beautiful indictment of 1950s American follows the blossoming love between a well-off suburban widow (Wyman) and her handsome and earthy younger gardener (Hudson).

Also the same day, Magnificent Obsession, another Technicolor melodrama is a mix of the sudsy and the spiritual.

MAGINIFICENT OBSESSION (1954) DRAMA, ROMANCE

Reckless playboy Bob Merrick (ROCK HUDSON, in his breakthrough role) crashes his speedboat, requiring emergency attention from the town’s only resuscitator—at the very moment that a beloved local doctor has a heart attack and dies waiting for the lifesaving device. Thus begins one of the most flamboyant master classes in melodrama from DOUGLAS SIRK (All That Heaven Allows), a delirious Technicolor mix of the sudsy and the Magnificent Obsession Blu-rayspiritual in which Bob and the doctor’s widow, Helen (The Lost Weekend’s JANE WYMAN), find themselves inextricably linked amid a series of increasingly wild twists, turns, trials, and tribulations.

SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES 

  • High-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack
  • Audio commentary from 2008 featuring film scholar
    Thomas Doherty
  • Magnificent Obsession, John M. Stahl’s 1935 adaptation of the same novel, newly restored
  • From UFA to Hollywood: Douglas Sirk Remembers (1991), a documentary by German filmmaker Eckhart Schmidt
  • Interviews from 2008 with filmmakers Allison Anders
    and Kathryn Bigelow, in which they pay tribute to Sirk
  • Theatrical trailer
  • PLUS: An essay by critic Geoffrey O’Brien

UNITED STATES | 1954 | 108 MINUTES | COLOUR | 2.00:1 | ENGLISH

ALL THAT HEAVEN ALLOWS (1955) DRAMA

This heartbreakingly beautiful indictment of 1950s American mores by Douglas Sirk (Written on the Wind) follows the blossoming love between a well-off suburban widow (Magnificent Obsession’s Jane Wyman) and her handsome and earthy younger gardener (Rock Hudson). After their romance prompts the scorn of her selfish children and snooty country club friends, she must decide whether to pursue her own happiness or carry on a lonely, hemmed-in existence for the sake of the approval of others. With the help of ace cinematographer Russell All That Heaven Allows Blu-rayMetty (Spartacus), Sirk imbued nearly every shot with a vivid and distinct emotional tenor. a profoundly felt film about class and conformity in small-town America, All That Heaven Allows is a pinnacle of expressionistic Hollywood melodrama.

SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES 

  • New 2K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack
  • Audio commentary featuring John Mercer, co-author of Melodrama: Genre, Style, Sensibility, and film scholar Tamar Jeffers-Mcdonald
  • Rock Hudson’s Home Movies (1992), a ground-breaking essay film about the actor by Mark
  • French television interview with Sirk from 1982
  • Excerpts from Behind the Mirror: A Profile of Douglas Sirk, a 1979 BBC documentary featuring rare interview footage with the director
  • Contract Kid: William Reynolds on Douglas Sirk, a 2007 interview with the actor, who co-starred in three Sirk films, including All That Heaven Allows
  • Trailer
  • Plus: a booklet featuring an essay by film scholar Laura Mulvey and an excerpt from a 1971 essay by filmmaker Rainer Werner Fassbinder on Sirk

 UNITED STATES | 1955 | 89 MINUTES | COLOUR | 1.75:1 | ENGLISH


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