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World Noir Vol. 1 (1957 - 1959) Limited Edition (3 Blu-ray)

Un témoin dans la ville (1959) / Un maledetto imbroglio (1959) / Ore wa matteru ze (1957)

Ohjaus Pietro Germi, Édouard Molinaro

Pääosissa Lino Ventura, Sandra Milo, Yujiro Ishihara, Hideaki Nitani, Pietro Germi, Claudio Gora, Claudia Cardinale

Tekstitys englanti

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Though widely considered an American filmmaking style, film noir was first applied by French critics to the visual and thematic darkness of the flood of American films in the post-War period. Those films, often by European emigré filmmakers, were influenced by European filmmaking modes, notably French poetic realism and Weimar cinema. The American noirs that flourished in the 1940s and 1950s in turn influenced cinema around the world again. This ongoing box set series attempts to capture the trails of the noir influence across the globe, from the pre-War period to the emergence of neo-noir, expanding our understanding and availability of this rich filmmaking tradition. 

In this first collection, World Noir Vol 1 focuses on the 1950s with three films exhibiting noir traits while still evoking their home genre trends and quirks. From 1957, in Koreyoshi Kurahara’s I Am Waiting a failed boxer and a waitress with a dark past run afoul of an underworld syndicate that seeks to exploit the woman to its own ends. With dreams of escaping to Brazil, he agrees to help. But neither the past nor the future turns out to be exactly what it seems. A foundational film from the pioneering studio of post-war Japanese noir Nikkatsu, I Am Waiting was directed by a master of the genre and stars Yujiro Ishihara and Mie Kitahara, the on-screen and real-life couple that ruled Japanese popular cinema of the 1950s.

In Edouard Molinaro’s 1959 Witness in the City, a wealthy industrialist murders his lover, throwing her from a train to look like suicide. Her husband, Ancelin (Lino Ventura, The Valachi Papers) seeks revenge but his endeavours leave a witness putting him in a cat-and-mouse game, thrillingly shot on the streets of Paris. An adaptation of the novel by celebrated writers Boileau and Narcejac (Vertigo, Les diaboliques) Molinaro wrings every ounce of tension from the narrative, focusing on evocative shadows and Parisian nightlife shot by Henri Decae (Le Samourai). 

Finally, in Pietro Germi’s The Facts of Murder, Inspector Ingravallo has been called to a Roman apartment building to investigate a robbery. Once there he questions the tenants but soon realises something is amiss. As the investigation progresses a simple robbery leads to a murder case… Directed by and starring Germi (The Railroad Man) as the growling Inspector, The Facts of Murder was loosely adapted from celebrated author Carlo Emilio Gadda’s novel and is shot with inky shadows reminiscent of film noir, while the mystery element prefigures the giallo. Featuring a cast of wonderful supporting actors including Claudia Cardinale (The Day of the Owl) and Claudio Gora (Il sorpasso), the film won multiple awards at Italian institutions including the Golden Globe for Best Film

BLU-RAY LIMITED EDITION BOX SET SPECIAL FEATURES:

New 4K restoration of The Facts of Murder carried out by L’Immagine Ritrovata at the Cineteca di Bologna, presented on Blu-ray for the first time in the world

2K restoration of Witness in the City, on Blu-ray for the first time in the UK

High Definition digital transfer of I Am Waiting, on Blu-ray for the first time in the world

Original uncompressed mono PCM audio for all films

Optional English subtitles for all films

Newly designed artwork based on original posters

Limited edition 80-page perfect bound booklet featuring new writing on the films by critics and experts including Barry Forshaw on noir represented outside the US, William Carroll on post-war occupation period in Japanese cinema, Hayley Scanlon on Japanese noir, Pasquale Iannone on the hybrid nature of Italian cinema, and Sam Wigley on 50s world noir from other countries

Limited Edition of 3000 copies, presented in a rigid box with full-height Scanavo cases for each film and removable OBI strip leaving packaging free of certificates and markings

I AM WAITING

Audio commentary by Japanese cinema expert Jasper Sharp

Yujiro's Travel Diary - a documentary on star Yujiro Ishihara during location shooting in Europe (1959, 42 mins)

The Yujiro Effect - a visual essay by Mark Schilling

Trailer

Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork 

WITNESS IN THE CITY

Introduction by critic Tony Rayns

Interview with Philippe Durant, biographer of Lino Ventura, who speaks about the film and the iconic actor

French noir - critic and author Ginette Vincendeau provides an overview of noir in France during the 1950s

Trailer

Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork 

THE FACTS OF MURDER

New interview with Pietro Germi expert Mario Sesti (2023)

The Man With the Cigar in His Mouth - a documentary about Pietro Germi featuring interviews with his colleagues and collaborators including Mario Monicelli, Claudia Cardinale, Stefania Sandrelli, Giuseppe Tornatore among others (Mario Sesti, 1997, 41 mins)

What's Black and Yellow All Over? All Shades of Italian Film Noir - visual essay by Paul A. J. Lewis on the presence of noir trends in Italian cinema and the evolution of the genre (2023)

Trailer

Newly translated English subtitles 

Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork

Extras subject to change

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