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ON DVD & BLU-RAY

Magnificent Doll (1946) starring Ginger Rogers Blu Ray (Arrow)

A tumultuous period in US history is reduced to a trivial romantic melodrama in Frank Borzage's account of former First Lady Dolly Madison. Nonetheless, Rogers tries her best as do co-stars David Niven as Aaron Burr and Burgess Meredith as James Madison.

Ginger Rogers and David Niven in Magnificent Doll

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Once Were Warriors (1994) Blu Ray (Second Sight)

This debut from the once-promising New Zealand director Lee Tamahori is a hard-hitting and all-too-honest look at a marginalised culture and the prevalent issues of alcoholism and violence within.

Once Were Warriors

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The Color of Pomegranates (1969) Blu Ray (Second Sight)

Sergei Parajanov’s acclaimed account of Armenian poet and musician Sayat Nova is a beautiful piece of cinema, albeit with an emphasis on metaphor over narrative which will alienate some viewers.

The Color of Pomegranates

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House aka Hausu (1977) dir: Nobuhiko Ôbayashi Blu Ray (Eureka!)

This postmodern, pop art Japanese take on comedy horror emphasises pure audiovisual insanity over substance. It's a film you'll either love or hate. It features a happy-clappy theme song by Godiego, who are also known for their contribution to the cult favourite TV series Monkey.

House (1977)

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Henri-Georges Clouzot's Inferno (2009) Blu Ray (Arrow Academy)

Serge Bromberg's reconstruction and postmortem of Henri-Georges Clouzot's aborted would-be masterpiece presents us with some visually-striking footage but not enough depth. However, the extras help to fill in the blanks.

Romy Schneider in Inferno

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Blue Collar (1978) dir: Paul Schrader Blu Ray (Indicator)

Richard Pryor, Harvey Keitel and Yaphet Kotto play three workers at a Checker Cab plant in Detroit who are fed up with taking it from The Man and decide to rob their union. It's a potent mix of polemic, humour and thriller whose message endures all too well to this day.

Richard Pryor in Blue Collar (1978)

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The Battle of Algiers (1966) Blu Ray & DVD (CultFilms)

Gillo Pontecorvo's frank and even-handed portrayal of the Algerian War of Independence focusses on FLN freedom fighter Ali La Pointe (Brahim Hadjadj) and the leader of the French response battalion Lieutenant-Colonel Mathieu (Jean Martin). Based on the original memoirs by Saadi Yacef, who also co-produced and co-stars here.

Jean Martin in The Battle of Algiers

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The Fortune (1975) dir: Mike Nichols Blu Ray (Indicator)

Hollywood heavyweights Warren Beatty and Jack Nicholson star alongside Stockard Channing (then in her first major film role) in this awkward but amusing period farce about two conmen out to relieve a drunken heiress of her inheritance.

Warren Beatty and Jack Nicholson in The Fortune

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Strangled (2016) dir: Árpád Sopsits Blu Ray & DVD (Eureka!)

This account of the pursuit of a real-life serial killer in Hungary during the Communist era is phenomenally nasty and downbeat. It works better as a study of the period than it does as a thriller.

Strangled (2016)

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The Shanghai Job (2017) DVD (Signature Entertainment)

Orlando Bloom does his best Jason Statham impersonation in this lightweight but enjoyable Chinese-British action flick. Charles Martin (E4's Skins) directs while Simon Yam, Lynn Hung, Xing Yu and Hannah Quinlivan co-star.

Orlando Bloom in The Shanghai Job

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More DVDs and Blu Rays

CLICK HERE for a guide to the best independent DVD / Blu Ray companies in the UK.

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Emilio Estevez and Zander Schloss in Repo Man

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