Sunday, January 21, 2007

Robbe-Grillet Finally Hitting DVD.

The films of French novelist Alain Robbe-Grillet have only been available in the worst possible grey-market dubs for years. I spent the mid to late 90's collecting these after reading about them in the indispensable Tohill and Tombs book, Immoral Tales. Apparently Robbe-Grillet has stopped the legitimate release of his films due to his wanting them only to be seen on the big screen. I have been hoping with the all of the advances in home theater that he might relent and that that might finally be happening.
Koch Lorber will release his visually stunning and erotic La Belle Captive on March 13th. This 1983 release looks to be uncut and will have English subtitles, something my blurry looking VHS dub did not offer.
La Belle Captive started life out as an odd written work in 1976 that Grillet had published with some of Magritte's paintings. The film uses Magritte as well Manet, according to Immoral Tales, as a constant reference point throughout.
I hope that this release signals the arrival of some of Robbe-Grillets earlier work on DVD. Films like Trans Europe Express, Slow Sliding Of Pleasure, Playing With Fire and Eden And After are all prime examples of the European art film. Robbe-Grillet's cinematic legacy might be flawed but it is wholly original and deserving of a re-release.

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