Arrow Video, with domestic sales and distribution expertise provided by MVD Entertainment Group, has outlined its March 2017 line of new Blu-ray product offerings and there will be new film restorations heading to retailers on each of the four street-date Tuesdays during the month.
Bookending the month’s selections are two film restorations arriving under the company’s “Arrow Academy” promotional banner — Luchino Visconti’s 1973 film release of Ludwig on Mar. 7 and on Mar. 28 look for Italian filmmaker Giuseppe Tornatore 1989 Best Foreign Language Oscar-winner, Cinema Paradiso.
Ludwig II of Bavaria (aka: The Mad King of Bavaria) was the subject of Visconti’s epic 1973 film, Ludwig, starring Helmut Berger in the title role. Arrow Video has completed a 4K restoration of the film from the original camera negative and is presenting it with two viewing options — the theatrical cut or in the form of a five-part mini-series presentation. There are two language track options, the original Italian (with optional English subtitles) and the English language track, which is available now for the first time.
Bonus goodies include documentary filmmaker Carlo Lizzani’s 1999 feature-length documentary, Luchino Visconti, the featurette titled “Silvana Mangano: The Scent of a Primrose” and two video sessions, a newly-prepared one with Helmut Berger and the screenwriter interview titled “Speaking with Suso Cecchi d'Amico.”
At the other end of the month — on Mar. 28 — is Cinema Paradiso, which is also being presented with two viewing options — the theatrical cut (124 minutes) and the Director’s Cut (logging in at 174 minutes) — both are presented in Italian with optional English subtitles.
As to bonus goodies, filmmaker Giuseppe Tornatore provides commentary and he is joined by Professor Millicent Marcus (Italian and Film studies at Yale University), plus there is documentary filmmaker Marc Evans’ feature-length documentary (2000), A Dream of Sicily, the short film titled A Bear and a Mouse in Paradise and the featurette titled “The Kissing Sequence.”
Also streeting on Mar. 28 are the 2K restorations — that restorations as in plural — of director Steve Miner’s 1985 surprise theatrical hit, House, and its 1987 sequel, House II: The Second Story (direction by Ethan Wiley). Arrow Video is promoting this double-disc Blu-ray presentation as House: Two Stories.
Bonus nuggets for House include commentary by director Steve Miner, producer Sean S. Cunningham, screenwriter Ethan Wiley and actor William Katt and the making-of documentary titled Ding Dong, You’re Dead!: The Making of House.
For House II: The Second Story, director Ethan Wiley and producer Sean S. Cunningham team for commentary and the newly prepared making-of documentary titled, It’s Getting Weirder! The Making of House II: The Second Story.
Elsewhere on the March Blu-ray release calendar from Arrow Video are: Italian filmmaker Elio Petri’s 1973 film release of Property is No Longer Theft (a Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack on Mar. 7) — a new 4K restoration from the original film negative and newly prepared video sessions with actor Flavio Bucci, producer Claudio Mancini and Make-up artist Pierantonio Mecacci — documentary filmmakers Tim Grabham and Jasper Sharp’s Creeping Garden (a Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack with a bonus CD on Mar. 14) and Japanese filmmaker Takashi Miike’s Dead or Alive Trilogy (featuring Dead or Alive, Dead or Alive 2: Birds, Dead or Alive: Final as a double-disc set on Mar. 14).