by HELEN GEIB
Choose-your-own double features are all the rage on the movie blogosphere right now. In the spirit of the moment, for this week’s DVD recommendation I offer you three themed double features from my home library:
The Matrix and The Thirteenth Floor (both 1999)
Did you know the world is really a computer simulation? The Matrix famously introduced American multiplex audiences to Hong Kong-style fight choreography and wirework, while the noirish The Thirteenth Floor looked back to Hollywood’s Golden Age.
Steamboat Bill Jr. (1928) and Project A Part II (1987)
Buster Keaton is one of Jackie Chan’s most important cinematic influences. Compare and contrast the acrobatics and precision timing of The Great Stone Face and the kung fu clown with a double feature of Steamboat Bill Jr. and Project A Part II.
East of Eden (1955) and Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham (2001)
Father-son melodrama par excellence. Presumably everyone still recognizes James Dean, even if his films aren’t much seen these days. The Indian gentleman is Bollywood superstar Shahrukh Khan. The father in East of Eden is played by Raymond Massey, the father in Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham (trans. “Sometimes Happiness, Sometimes Sadness”) by Bollywood superstar-legend Amitabh Bachchan.
New releases this week: Rio, Soul Surfer