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Heavenly Harmonies: The Soundtrack of Wim Wenders' "Wings of Desire"

  • MUBI
“When a child was a child…”A man’s voice is heard, reading out words as they are written in thick ink on paper.…it didn’t know it was a child”He continues, some of the words delivered in sing-song, joyfully, as if they were a children’s nursery song:“Everything was full of life/And all life was one...”His voice is friendly voice; a comforting voice; a voice that we will soon learn belongs to Damiel (Bruno Ganz), an angel who watches over the city of Berlin and its inhabitants with the curiosity and reverence of a child. Damiel has such deep affection for human life that he is willing to eschew immortality for earthly pleasures and the most intoxicating human experience of all: love. Both Damiel’s voice and those of the humans he consoles and studies feature prominently on the film’s soundtrack, sometimes in isolation,
See full article at MUBI »

TCM Remembers WB Actress Who Would Become Broadway Star

Canadian-born actress Alexis Smith (born 1921) would have turned 96 years old today, June 8. Turner Classic Movies is celebrating her birthday by presenting nine of her movies, mostly during her time as a Warner Bros. contract player. In addition to Michael Curtiz's box office hit Night and Day, a highly fictionalized Cole Porter biopic starring Cary Grant as a heterosexual version of the famed gay composer. Night and Day is being shown as part of TCM's Gay Pride Month celebration. Alexis Smith died on June 9, 1993, the day after she turned 72. After her film career petered out in the 1950s, she went on to receive acclaim on the Broadway stage, making sporadic film appearances all the way to the year of her death. Smith's last film appearance was in a minor supporting role in Martin Scorsese's overly genteel period drama The Age of Innocence (1993), starring Daniel Day-Lewis, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Winona Ryder.
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Cinema’s Exiles: From Hitler to Hollywood

Banished by Josef Goebbels and threatened by the Reich, the creative core of the German film industry found itself in sunny Los Angeles, many not speaking English but determined to carry on as writers, directors and actors. More than simply surviving, they made a profound impact on Hollywood moviemaking. Cinema's Exiles: From Hitler to Hollywood DVD-r The Warner Archive Collection 2009 / B&W / 1:37 flat Academy / 117 min. / Street Date April 12, 2016 / available through the WBshop / 21.99 Cinematography Joan Churchill, Emil Fischhaber Film Editor Anny Lowery Meza Original Music Peter Melnick Written, Produced and Directed by Karen Thomas

Reviewed by Glenn Erickson

Cinema's Exiles: From Hitler to Hollywood is the perfect docu to introduce people to the way film and world history are intertwined... and also to generate interest in older movies and classic cinema. Instead of a story about the making of movies, it's about a fascinating group of filmmakers forced to abandon
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Legendary Bergman on TCM: From Hollywood Career-Ruining Scandal to 3 Oscars and Another Bergman

Ingrid Bergman ca. early 1940s. Ingrid Bergman movies on TCM: From the artificial 'Gaslight' to the magisterial 'Autumn Sonata' Two days ago, Turner Classic Movies' “Summer Under the Stars” series highlighted the film career of Greta Garbo. Today, Aug. 28, '15, TCM is focusing on another Swedish actress, three-time Academy Award winner Ingrid Bergman, who would have turned 100 years old tomorrow. TCM has likely aired most of Bergman's Hollywood films, and at least some of her early Swedish work. As a result, today's only premiere is Fielder Cook's little-seen and little-remembered From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler (1973), about two bored kids (Sally Prager, Johnny Doran) who run away from home and end up at New York City's Metropolitan Museum. Obviously, this is no A Night at the Museum – and that's a major plus. Bergman plays an elderly art lover who takes an interest in them; her
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Oscar-Nominated Film Series: Gwtw Actress De Havilland Steals Show from Co-Stars in Romantic/Immigration Melodrama

'Hold Back the Dawn': Olivia de Havilland behind Charles Boyer and Paulette Goddard 'Hold Back the Dawn' 1941 movie: Olivia de Havilland steals show as small-town teacher in love Olivia de Havilland shines in Mitchell Leisen's melodrama Hold Back the Dawn, a sort of opening bracket for the director's World War II-era films. Adapted by Billy Wilder and Charles Brackett from Ketti Frings' semi-autobiographical story, Hold Back the Dawn stars Charles Boyer as George Iscovescu, a Romanian dancer unable to enter the U.S. from Mexico due to immigration quotas imposed at the onset of the European conflict. Paulette Goddard is his scheming former partner, Anita, who marries an American to gain entry into the country only to immediately leave the duped husband. George adopts the idea – a naïve small-town schoolteacher visiting a Mexican border town is his prey. As the unsuspecting teacher, Olivia de Havilland radiates understanding and sympathy.
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Otto Sander obituary

Versatile actor at Berlin's Schaubühne theatre who made films with Wim Wenders and Eric Rohmer

The German actor Otto Sander, who has died aged 72 after suffering from cancer, made his name as one of the members of Peter Stein's Schaubühne theatre in Berlin, where he developed a versatile but precise stage presence that he brought to all kinds of roles. Sander also had more than 100 credits in film and TV productions, most notably Wolfgang Petersen's Das Boot (The Boat, 1981), as a drunk and disillusioned U-boat captain, and Der Himmel über Berlin (Wings of Desire, 1987), as one of the two angels in Wim Wenders's magical survey of the divided city.

Born in Hanover, Sander grew up in Kassel, where he graduated from the Friederichsgymnasium in 1961. He did his military service as a naval reserve officer. In 1965, in his first engagement at the Düsseldorf Kammerspiele, he showed a natural
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

From Freedom Fighter to Blacklisted 'Subversive'; Henreid Takes a Last Bow Tonight

Paul Henreid in ‘Casablanca’: Freedom Fighter on screen, Blacklisted ‘Subversive’ off screen Turner Classic Movies’ Star of the Month of July 2013, Paul Henreid, bids you farewell this evening. TCM left the most popular, if not exactly the best, for last: Casablanca, Michael Curtiz’s 1943 Best Picture Oscar-winning drama, is showing at 7 p.m. Pt tonight. (Photo: Paul Henreid sings "La Marseillaise" in Casablanca.) One of the best-remembered movies of the studio era, Casablanca — not set in a Spanish or Mexican White House — features Paul Henreid as Czechoslovakian underground leader Victor Laszlo, Ingrid Bergman’s husband but not her True Love. That’s Humphrey Bogart, owner of a cafe in the titular Moroccan city. Henreid’s anti-Nazi hero is generally considered one of least interesting elements in Casablanca, but Alt Film Guide contributor Dan Schneider thinks otherwise. In any case, Victor Laszlo feels like a character made to order for Paul Henreid,
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

One Henreid, a Couple of Cigarettes, and Four Davises

Paul Henreid: From lighting two cigarettes and blowing smoke onto Bette Davis’ face to lighting two cigarettes while directing twin Bette Davises Paul Henreid is back as Turner Classic Movies’ Star of the Month of July 2013. TCM will be showing four movies featuring Henreid (Now, Voyager; Deception; The Madwoman of Chaillot; The Spanish Main) and one directed by him (Dead Ringer). (Photo: Paul Henreid lights two cigarettes on the set of Dead Ringer, while Bette Davis remembers the good old days.) (See also: “Paul Henreid Actor.”) Irving Rapper’s Now, Voyager (1942) was one of Bette Davis’ biggest hits, and it remains one of the best-remembered romantic movies of the studio era — a favorite among numerous women and some gay men. But why? Personally, I find Now, Voyager a major bore, made (barely) watchable only by a few of the supporting performances (Claude Rains, Best Supporting Actress Academy Award nominee
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Three-Time Academy Award Nominee Turns 91 Today

Eleanor Parker: Palm Springs resident turns 91 today Eleanor Parker turns 91 today. The three-time Oscar nominee (Caged, 1950; Detective Story, 1951; Interrupted Melody, 1955) and Palm Springs resident is Turner Classic Movies’ Star of the Month of June 2013. Earlier this month, TCM showed a few dozen Eleanor Parker movies, from her days at Warner Bros. in the ’40s to her later career as a top Hollywood supporting player. (Photo: Publicity shot of Eleanor Parker in An American Dream.) Missing from TCM’s movie series, however, was not only Eleanor Parker’s biggest box-office it — The Sound of Music, in which she steals the show from both Julie Andrews and the Alps — but also what according to several sources is her very first movie role: a bit part in Raoul Walsh’s They Died with Their Boots On, a 1941 Western starring Errol Flynn as a dashingly handsome and all-around-good-guy-ish General George Armstrong Custer. Olivia de Havilland
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

The 10 Best Criterion CollectION DVDs

  • Celebsology
Since 1984, The Criterion Collection has been dedicated to compiling the greatest classic and contemporary films of all time and releasing them in pristine laser disc, DVD and now Blu-Ray editions loaded with extensive supplemental features, extensive essays from an assorted host of acclaimed film critics and, of course, the highest technical picture and audio standards available. Translation? They make the best… and most expensive… DVDs on the market.

All this month in stores and online, Barnes & Noble is offering every title in the Criterion Collection on DVD and Blu-Ray at 50% off. Where to start? For all you aspiring film scholars out there, here's a list of 10 essential Criterion Collection discs, presented in chronological order. Take a look:

The Rules Of The Game (1939)

Directed by Jean Renoir

One of the greatest (and, initially, most controversial) films of all time, Renoir's The Rules of the Game was destroyed during World War II,
See full article at Celebsology »

Home Media Magazine Presents Its 2010 HD Awards Poll, Wings Of Desire And Gimme Shelter Hold Down The Criterion Front

I think it’s safe to assume that we all love what Criterion is putting out these days, especially those deemed worthy to receive a high definition release on Blu-ray. It’s a given that we also love spreading the good word of Criterion, being that we went so far as to start a podcast and website, to keep the discussion of quality home video releases alive and well.

We also love using our Disc 2 episodes to feature other DVD’s and Blu-ray’s that we find exceptional, and over the past year there have certainly been a lot to talk about.

The fine folks over at Home Media Magazine have unveiled their annual HD Awards, and they want you to weigh in on the best Blu-ray releases from the past year. While I’m sure we’d all like to see that list completely full of discs from the Criterion Collection,
See full article at CriterionCast »

Blu-Ray Review: Glorious ‘Wings of Desire’ Given Criterion Treatment

  • HollywoodChicago.com
Chicago – When true film fans receive the monthly Criterion newsletter, they usually skim it looking for their favorite films. It’s not that Criterion really ever makes bad decisions, but when a personal favorite gets the call, it’s like watching the baseball player you grew up idolizing get inducted into the Hall of Fane. Such is the feeling I get when I look at the Criterion Blu-Ray release of “Wings of Desire,” one of the most lyrically beautiful films ever made.

Blu-Ray Rating: 5.0/5.0

Wim Wenders’ 1987 masterpiece is the filmmaker’s ode to his favorite city, Berlin, using faith and love as its instruments. Some readers may know the story better from the Nicolas Cage remake “City of Angels,” but that film is merely a shadow of one of the most acclaimed works of the last three decades. Bruno Ganz plays Damiel, an angel who wanders the streets of Berlin
See full article at HollywoodChicago.com »

Wings Of Desire Criterion Blu-ray Review

  • Collider.com
Wings of Desire is one of those films that I’ve always wanted to see, but been weary of getting around to watching. Sure, it’s a well-respected classic of its time, often cited as one of the great films of the 1980’s, and held the cache of “the foreign film people who don’t watch foreign films love” much like films like Amelie or Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. But when the film came out Pauline Kael decimated it in her review. And I hate being the movie guy who doesn’t like films that everyone else likes, which is often the case. My review after the jump.

Kael was wrong; it’s a touching fable about two angels hovering over Germany. They are Damiel (Bruno Ganz) and Cassiel (Otto Dumont), and they listen in on a number of different people as they observe humanity from a ablack and white distance.
See full article at Collider.com »

Blu-ray Review: Wings of Desire (Criterion Collection)

Wim Wenders's Wings of Desire is able to capture your attention despite its sparing plot for the main reason you know its about something even if that something takes its sweet time in fully revealing itself. The film follows two guardian angels, Damiel (Bruno Ganz) and Cassiel (Otto Sander), as they watch over humanity from up high above the streets of Berlin, and, more often than not, at street level.

As they walk the streets, an often visited library and ride the trains we listen in on the thoughts of others as those Damiel and Cassiel encounter can be heard. However, their thoughts don't come across as a string of cohesive sentences as much as they are fragments of ideas, occasionally offering something of substance, but most often an example of the mundane. To that effect you could say Wings of Desire is about just that, an appreciation for the simpler things in life,
See full article at Rope Of Silicon »

Wings of Desire: Criterion Collection Blu-ray Review

Wim Wenders' Wings of Desire (Der Himmel uber Berlin) centers around two guardian angels, Damiel (Bruno Ganz) and Cassiel (Otto Sander). The duo .alongside other angels- act as witnesses to all that takes place around them on Earth (the streets of 1987 West Berlin, to be precise). Moving invisibly through the haunted city, they observe, collect and share people's thoughts, dreams, memories and fears with each other. After an eternity of observing, Damiel begins to ponder the possibility of becoming mortal, and when he encounters and falls for a lonely trapeze artist named Marion (Solveig Dommartin), he decides to take the plunge and become human.

Until Damiel makes that leap, nearly two-thirds into the movie's 127-minute running time, there really isn't much of a structured plot to speak of in Wings of Desire. The film is more of a reflection on the human condition, expressed through a series of sequences of inner monologues.
See full article at TheHDRoom »

Criterion's October Blu-ray Slate Includes Wings of Desire

Criterion has announced a trio of films that will join their Blu-ray Disc Criterion Collection with all new filmmaker approved high definition transfers this October. The first film, Mira Nair's Monsoon Wedding, will be released on October 13 with 5.1 DTS-hd Master Audio. A week later on October 20 will see the release of staff favorite Wings of Desire, also with 5.1 DTS-hd Master Audio, and Howards End with Helena Bonham Carter and uncompressed 5.1 Dolby Digital audio. Complete disc specs for each release are as follows: Wings of Desire

New, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised and approved by director Wim Wenders Audio commentary featuring Wenders and actor Peter Falk The Angels Among Us (2003), a documentary featuring interviews with Wenders, Falk, actors Bruno Ganz and Otto Sander, writer Peter Handke, and composer Jürgen Knieper Excerpt from "Wim Wenders Berlin Jan. 87," an episode of the French television program Cinéma cinémas, including on-set footage Interview with
See full article at TheHDRoom »

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