Now in Theaters:

The Taste of Things (**) Former real life married couple Benoit Magime and Juliette Binoche star in this 19th century set tale of the relationship between a gourmand (Dodin) and the woman (Eugenie) who has cooked for him over a period of twenty years. When she begins exhibiting symptoms of the mystery ailment that only affects characters in the movies, the one that famed critic Roger Ebert termed Ali McGraw’s Disease (Google it), Dodin decides it’s time to cook her a meal and, perhaps, make her his bride. Will they marry and live blissfully ever after concocting new and exciting dishes in the kitchen or will fate intervene? It takes an interminable 135 minutes-roughly three quarters of which are just endless shots of food being prepared and cooked for the film to reveal the answer and even then, it refuses to end when it logically should. If you want to see cinematic depictions of cooking, with about 75 minutes of plot sandwiched in among the footage, this may be your cup of tea. If, however, food prep is what you’re after then YouTube videos are preferable, because at least you’re given instructions on how to actually prepare the food. Something you won’t find here. Magime and Binoche are fine, but the film gives them so very little of interest to do that it’s hardly worth the effort. Inexplicably, France decided to submit this as their Best International Feature as opposed to the superior (but not by much), Anatomy of a Fall. It’s one of the mysteries of life.

Theater and Disc

Photo: Benoit Magime and Juliette Binoche in The Taste of Things

New on Disc:


The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962) John Ford’s celebrated teaming of John Wayne and Jimmy Stewart in the western tale of a lawyer who may or may not have killed a notorious outlaw gets the 4K UHD treatment in a  reissue of the 60th anniversary edition that also includes archival commentaries and a new featurette.

Shout Factory:

The coming-of-age crime drama, Over the Edge (1979), comes to Blu Ray for the first in a US release. Matt Dillon stars in the film (his debut) as part of a group of disaffected youth on the rampage. Extras include several new featurettes and interviews.


The label is reissuing several of its previous releases in new editions that include a collectible slipcover with its packaging. These are the Lee Van Cleef western, Death Rides a Horse (1967), legendary Italian director Sergio Leone’s A Fistful of Dynamite (1971), the Oscar winning adaptation of the celebrated play, The Lion in Winter (1968) and Walter Hill’s follow-up to his controversial hit The Warriors, the revisionist western The Long Riders (1980).

Film Movement:

Under the Fig Trees (2022) is a portrait of life among workers at a fig orchard in Tunisia over the course of a single day.

Radiance Films:

Allonsanfan (1974) Marcello Mastroianni is a reluctant insurgent in the days following the fall of Napoleon in this film from Paulo and Vittorio Taviani getting a first time Blu Ray release. Bonus materials include commentary, booklet and archival interview.

Black Tight Killers (1966) is a Japanese spy spoof that features such interesting delights as weaponized vinyl records and go-go dancing ninjas. Extras include commentary and archival interviews.

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