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Cinema

Frank Sidebottom The Home of the Retrospective

ON DVD & BLU-RAY

Black Joy (1977) starring Norman Beaton Blu Ray (Indicator)

This documentary-like look at a Guyanese immigrant learning the ropes of life in Brixton provides both a fascinating window back to a burgeoning ethnic community and a gritty but entertaining drama. Starring Norman Beaton, Trevor Thomas, Dawn Hope and Floella Benjamin.

Floella Benjamin and Norman Beaton in Black Joy

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Scum (1979) starring Ray Winstone Blu Ray (Indicator)

Get ready to fill your socks with billiard balls in readiness for Alan Clarke's harrowing depiction of the dog-eat-dog world of the now-abolished British borstal system. Its depiction of institutionalised violence remains just as hard-hitting today as it was back then.

Ray Winstone in Scum

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The Andromeda Strain (1971) Blu Ray (Arrow)

Director Robert Wise's adaptation of Michael Crichton's breakout novel is a chillingly effective slow-burner about an alien disease imperilling humankind. Arthur Hill, David Wayne, James Olson and Kate Reid head up an unusually star-free cast.

Arthur Hill and James Olson in The Andromeda Strain

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Who? (1974) starring Elliott Gould Blu Ray (Indicator)

This Cold War-era tale of a cyborg scientist who is passed across the Iron Curtain has some interesting ideas and good acting but falls short in terms of overall execution. It stars Elliott Gould, Trevor Howard and Joseph Bova in a silly metal mask.

Who? starring Joseph Bova and Elliott Gould

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The Triple Echo (1972) dir: Michael Apted Blu Ray (Indicator)

This unconventional WWII drama features both Glenda Jackson and Oliver Reed falling for a cross-dressing Brian Deacon. An interesting if imperfect big screen debut for director Apted gets by mainly on the strengths of its three central performances.

The Triple Echo (1972)

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Blood Hunger: The Films of José Larraz Blu Ray (Arrow)

Amongst this three-film boxed set, Vampyres is the best: an underrated, low-budget horror gem with its own distinctive take on the vampire mythos. The other two films are less satisfying and feel more like bonus features for the bloodsucking main event.

Blood Hunger: The Films of José Larraz Blu Ray boxed set art

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Sister Street Fighter Collection (1974-1976) Blu Ray (Arrow)

Etsuko Shiomi kicks ass across four Japanese martial arts films, the last of which is a sequel-in-name-only to the first three. The first one is the freshest and most outright entertaining entry but it's still a fun collection overall.

Sonny Chiba pops up in Sister Street Fighter

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A Severed Head (1970) starring Ian Holm Blu Ray (Indicator)

This absurdist game of musical beds is strange without being particularly interesting or funny. The talented cast tries hard but only Claire Bloom manages to make a truly memorable impression. Also starring Lee Remick, Richard Attenborough and Ian Holm.

Claire Bloom and Ian Holm in A Severed Head (1970)

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Take a Girl Like You (1970) Blu Ray (Indicator)

This rarely funny romantic comedy displays attitudes which seem hopelessly dated when seen in this #MeToo generation. Hayley Mills and Oliver Reed give better performances than the material deserves. Also starring Noel Harrison, John Bird, Sheila Hancock and Penelope Keith.

Hayley Mills in Take a Girl Like You

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R.P.M. (1970) dir: Stanley Kramer Blu Ray (Indicator)

This fictional dramatisation of America's late-1960s campus protests suffers from clunky didacticism. Nonetheless, the central debate remains compelling, Anthony Quinn is perfectly cast and the finale sends palpable chills down the spine. Also starring Ann-Margaret, Gary Lockwood and Paul Winfield.

R.P.M. (1970) poster

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More DVDs and Blu Rays

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CINEMA

ARTICLES

Monia Chokri in Emma Peeters

RETRO

Erik the Conqueror directed by Mario Bava

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