July 20, 2011

DVD Releases

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Suggested retail price: $19.95 

VIDEOPORT PICKS

"PHIL OCHS: THERE BUT FOR FORTUNE," documentary. Mention folk music, and the usual suspects -- Dylan, Joan Baez, Peter Paul and Mary, and the like -- inevitably come to mind. But perhaps no one embodies the fusion of gentle demeanor with revolutionary overtones inherent in this particular genre better than the late Phil Ochs, a name that doesn't get bandied about much these days. Hopefully, that may change if enough people check out director Kenneth Bowser's excellent documentary, which assembles a once-in-a-lifetime roster of talking heads (including fellow folkies Baez and Pete Seeger, actor Sean Penn, and writer Christopher Hitchens) to sing the praises (and admit the shortcomings) of this musical icon. Torn between his need to rail against the system and his lust for fame, Ochs remained a tragic character well up until he took his own life in 1976. Not rated, contains language. Running time: 1:37

Suggested retail price: $27.95 

"POTICHE (TROPHY WIFE)," starring Catherine Deneuve and Gerard Depardieu. Deneuve plays a housewife forced to take over an umbrella factory after her no-good husband is taken hostage by striking workers, while Depardieu plays the communist town mayor who harbors a longtime crush and as such rushes to her aid. Set in the mid-'70s, director Francis Ozon takes full advantage of that particular era's flair for gaudy fashion and furnishings, providing a wild backdrop for the spirited goings-on. Rated R for some sexuality. Running time: 1:43

Suggested retail price: DVD $29.95; Blu-ray $38.94

- Courtesy of Videoport

 

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