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Monday, May 20, 2013

Home Moves/Out on Digital: May 20

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One Hour Photo

The overlooked masterpiece of psychological suspense stars Robin Williams as a photo developer in a big box mart. He’s as blandly unremarkable as his surroundings until he develops an obsession for a young family—regular customers with a steady stream of happy looking snapshots. Williams is wonderfully understated as a lonely man who begins to confuse the fantasy of photography with the reality behind the surfaces. The austere cinematic composition by writer-director Mark Romanek holds a steady state of unease before rising into the unsettling creepiness of stalking and voyeurism.

Howl’s Moving Castle

The internationally popular anime film Howl’s Moving Castle, from Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki, is a colorfully animated children’s story in a half-timbered, coal-fired, steam punk fantasy world. The setting suggests Edwardian Europe, but with great flying machines and an anthropomorphic Rube Goldberg structure moving across the landscape on spindly legs. War is afoot, and the protagonist, a hat shop girl named Sophie, must navigate among battling armies and shape-shifting wizards and witches.

“Beetlejuice: The Complete Series”

Tim Burton’s 1988 film Beetlejuice introduced Winona Ryder as Lydia, the disaffected Goth girl who summons a puckish friend from the Netherworld. The movie also launched an Emmy-winning Saturday morning animated series—a fast, loud and colorful set of gags about Lydia in rebellion against her parents’ bland suburban world, and her ghoulish companion. All 94 episodes of the 1989-1992 series are out in a 12-DVD box set.


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