Archive for September 16, 2010
Like him or loathe him, Paul W.S. Anderson is one of the kingpins of modern genre filmmaking thanks to the success of his Resident Evil series. Cult film types interested his work will get a chance to see his debut film because Severin Films is preparing DVD and blu-ray versions of Shopping. This film, which featured Jude Law in his first screen role, was very controversial in the U.K. and will be presented in an remastered, uncut version with extras. Read on for the early news on this chav-chaos epic:
SEVERIN TO RELEASE ‘SHOPPING’ STARRING JUDE LAW UNCUT ON BLU-RAY & DVD
FOR FIRST TIME EVER IN AMERICA
THE STUNNING FEATURE DEBUT
FROM THE DIRECTOR OF THE #1 MOVIE IN THE WORLD!
Along with marking Oscar™-nominee Jude Law’s (SHERLOCK HOLMES, TALENTED MR. RIPLEY) feature film debut, SHOPPING packs an all-star British cast including Sean Bean (LORD OF THE RINGS), Jonathan Pryce (PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN, BRAZIL), Sadie Frost (BRAM STOKER’S DRACULA), Sean Pertwee (DOG SOLDIERS), and 60s icon Marianne Faithful.
Anderson, the director of the current worldwide #1 box office smash RESDIENT EVIL: AFTERLIFE has helmed an impressive string of big budget crowd-pleasing action blockbusters such as MORTAL KOMBAT, EVENT HORIZON, RESIDENT EVIL, ALIEN VS. PREDATOR and DEATH RACE. But it was SHOPPING, his hard-hitting cautionary tale of adrenaline-addicted youth run amok, that first brought Anderson to the attention of Hollywood. Which was fortunate since the subsequent controversy surrounding SHOPPING nearly killed Anderson’s career in his native United Kingdom.
SHOPPING capitalized on a fissure in England’s early-90s youth culture – ram-raiding, the practice of using stolen cars to plow into storefronts, then stealing everything you could carry before authorities arrived. SHOPPING’s too-graphic depiction of ram-raiding (which included a scene that showed you how to steal an alarmed car in 60 seconds or less) caused a full-fledged tabloid outcry in England, with yellow journalists claiming the film would inspire a wave of copycat crimes nationwide.
The hysterical campaign against SHOPPING forced the infamous British film censorship board to stall its release for nearly a year, enforcing numerous cuts to Anderson’s gritty, post-apocalyptic vision. By the time a censored version limped into British cinemas a year later, SHOPPING’s commercial and critical prospects were irrevocably damaged. The press, laying in wait, savaged the then-unknown Jude Law’s performance to the point where Law’s nascent film career was put onto life support. Eventually, a even further-truncated version was released theatrically in the U.S. by Roger Corman.
But now for the first time in North America, the fully unhinged, uncut version of SHOPPING is roaring onto DVD and Blu-Ray with all the controversial ram-raiding footage restored in stunning high-definition. A host of exclusive special features are currently in production including interviews, commentary, deleted scenes and more.
“SHOPPING is a terrific acquisition for us,” says Carl Daft, co-founder and CEO of Severin Films. “The critics not only missed the boat on SHOPPING, they never set foot on the bloody pier. A level-headed review of 90s British cinema will reveal that SHOPPING was the actually the first of a wave crime-inspired UK films, including SHALLOW GRAVE, TRAINSPOTTING, and LOCK STOCK AND TWO SMOKING BARRELS. It’s undeniable that with SHOPPING, Anderson was first to the punch, with Danny Boyle and the like doing the own fine work bringing up the rear. It’s beyond high time this British action auteur was given his due as a maverick of popular cinema and our Special Edition release of his electrifying debut will start the ball rolling.”
Remixing a tune for the dancefloor is a challenge but doing an edit of the same tune can be an even bigger challenge. Remixers usually have the benefit of working with master tapes and being able to mix in or out as much of what’s in the grooves as they wish. Someone doing an edit must primarily stick to what’s on the record itself: there are ample opportunities to “rewrite” the record by changing its structure or adding new intros/outros/breaks but doing it right involves the kind of strategy that requires a good deal of aesthetic smarts.
That said, there are plenty of talented d.j.’s who can rise to the demands of creating a good edit. One of the masters of the form is Danny Krivit, an old-school d.j. who remains in demand around the world (both in the d.j. booth and the recording studio) for his skills. He’s been doing edits since the 1980’s and many a fan of modern dance sounds have grown up on his interpretations of classic disco, soul and funk tracks.
As the title suggests, Edits By Mr. K – Vol. 2 is a followup to a popular 2003 comp that collected some of Krivit’s best work. This new edition follows the same mandate as its predecessor, offering edits that reconfigure classic sounds from a modern perspective. The first cut offers the listener a good introduction to Krivit’s approach: he takes the early Patrice Rushen cut “Music Of The Earth” and re-edits it into a double-length version that is more suited to dancefloor needs. That said, his work never calls attention to itself with flashy beat-chopping or any modern affectations. Instead, the segues and restructured elements are smoothly blended together to give it a pleasingly natural feel.
Krivit can be adventurous with his source material but he’s careful to do in a way that is respectful to the original version: for example, Fatback’s “Spanish Hustle” has its slow buildup intro removed and replaced with a new, more hard-driving one that gets into the song’s Latin rhythms immediately and the edit of Chairmen Of The Board’s “Life And Death” removes the psychedelic intro and most of the instrumental breaks to create a beat-dominated rework that changes its overall feel from rocked-up funk into something consistently danceable. These edits make for pleasing listens because they are rethinking the songs within their own elements instead of trying to compete with them by adding a bunch of extraneous sonic clutter (as all too many modern remixers do).
The only moment that feels out of place on this set is the inclusion of Blue Moderne’s “Through The Night”: despite being a good song and a typically imaginative edit, it’s electronically-oriented 1980’s production style sticks out alongside the 1970’s-oriented, more organic-sounding tracks that surround it. That quibble aside, Edits By Mr. K Vol. 2 is a consistently rewarding listen that offers surprises and good grooves in equal measure. Both disco fans and more soul/funk-oriented listeners will find plenty to enjoy here.