994 Local Hero

Discuss DVDs and Blu-rays released by Criterion and the films on them. If it's got a spine number, it's in here. Threads may contain spoilers.
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swo17
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994 Local Hero

#1 Post by swo17 » Mon Jun 17, 2019 4:33 pm

Local Hero

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Bill Forsyth put Scottish cinema on the map with this delightfully eccentric culture-clash comedy. Riffing on popular representations of Scottish life and folklore, Local Hero follows the Texas oil executive Mac (Peter Riegert), who is dispatched by his crackpot boss (Burt Lancaster) to a remote seaside village in Scotland with orders to buy out the town and develop the region for an oil refinery. But as business mixes with pleasure, Mac finds himself enchanted by both the picturesque community and its oddball denizens—and Texas starts to feel awfully far away. Packed with a near nonstop stream of droll one-liners and deadpan gags, this enchanting cult hit finds Forsyth surveying the idiosyncrasies of small-town life with the satirical verve of a latter-day Preston Sturges, arriving at a sly commentary on conservation, corporate greed, and the legacies we leave behind.

DIRECTOR-APPROVED SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES

• New 2K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
• Audio commentary from 2018 featuring director Bill Forsyth and film critic Mark Kermode
• New conversation between Forsyth and film critic David Cairns
Shooting from the Heart, a 1985 documentary about the work of cinematographer Chris Menges
• Episode of The South Bank Show from 1983 about the production of the film
The Making of "Local Hero," a documentary made during the film's production, featuring interviews with actors Burt Lancaster and Peter Riegert
I Thought Maybe I'd Get to Meet Alan Whicker, a 1983 interview with Forsyth on his early career in documentaries, his first narrative features, and the success of Local Hero
• PLUS: An essay by film scholar Jonny Murray

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Floyd
Joined: Fri Nov 05, 2004 10:25 pm

Re: 994 Local Hero

#2 Post by Floyd » Mon Jun 17, 2019 5:15 pm

This is right there with To Sleep with Anger with an amazing surprise release that I am beyond excited about. A truly magical one of a kind experience that I can't wait to revisit.

I have a hard time putting my finger on its magic but perhaps with it's always gentle curiosity with it's people and characters, along with the incredible scenery, and space. Maybe it's just always curiosity in general. Lovely movie.


Last edited by Floyd on Mon Jun 17, 2019 5:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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flyonthewall2983
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#3 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Mon Jun 17, 2019 7:14 pm

Saw this on FilmStruck last year. Very charming, left-of-center movie that reflects it's surroundings by the time the story settles in Scotland.

Mark Knopfler still performs the theme at his shows as a final encore.
Last edited by flyonthewall2983 on Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Roscoe
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#4 Post by Roscoe » Mon Jun 17, 2019 7:45 pm

One of the loveliest films in my experience, funny and moving and gentle and it just all works, and I hope Forsyth's masterpiece will now start getting the attention it has long deserved.

But that cover artwork is really dreadful -- the worst since whatever the hell that was for TOM JONES.

beamish14
Joined: Fri May 18, 2018 3:07 pm

Re: 994 Local Hero

#5 Post by beamish14 » Mon Jun 17, 2019 8:20 pm

Another huge missed opportunity of a disc. I was really hoping it would include Forsyth's 1981 television short Andrina (which, being a BBC production, was probably too expensive to license, but still), Forsyth/Lancaster's 1989 advert, a commentary, an interview with Peter Riegert/Peter Capaldi/Burt Lancaster's daughter Joanna (who oversees her father's estate and has come to screenings of his films), etc.

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bdsweeney
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#6 Post by bdsweeney » Mon Jun 17, 2019 9:51 pm

beamish14 wrote:Another huge missed opportunity of a disc. I was really hoping it would include Forsyth's 1981 television short Andrina (which, being a BBC production, was probably too expensive to license, but still), Forsyth/Lancaster's 1989 advert, a commentary, an interview with Peter Riegert/Peter Capaldi/Burt Lancaster's daughter Joanna (who oversees her father's estate and has come to screenings of his films), etc.
There will be a British release of the film (soon, I would imagine) that will have different special features. (For example, Forsyth has recorded a commentary with the BBC/Guardian critic Mark Kermode.) If it’s released by the BFI, the inclusion of Andrina is a possibility.

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colinr0380
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#7 Post by colinr0380 » Tue Jun 18, 2019 1:31 am

This is definitely one of those key 'young naive figure trying to be a hard hearted businessman comes to destroy local business and ends up having his heart touched by the down home charms of the people who live there' film. Something like the Australian film Spotswood, or Renée Zellweger's New In Town feel in that tradition (plus Doc Hollywood!)

Here's a BBC programme on the film with a lot of those interviews that beamish14 wants. I'm mostly surprised by no Mark Kermode at all. It would be like doing a release of The Exorcist without him!

But I think I am most excited by the potential of Being Human turning up now! (Though Gregory's Girl would probably be a safer bet if they did more Bill Forsyth)

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Lost Highway
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#8 Post by Lost Highway » Tue Jun 18, 2019 3:12 am

The thing which subverts the sentimental expectations of the 80s yuppie movie alluded to by Colin is
SpoilerShow
how keen the villagers are to sell out. They are fed up with their tough lives and they just pretend they want to stay in their supposedly idyllic location to hold out for a better deal.
Can’t wait to get this to complete my triple feature together with I Know Where I’m Going and The Wicker Man.

Calvin
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#9 Post by Calvin » Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:00 am

This film means more to me than almost any other, and was filmed just an hour up the coast from me in a village called Pennan. It has always been idolised here, but gained new attention a few years ago due to the parallels with pre-President Donald Trump's (unfortunately) successful efforts to build a golf course at Balmedie. Anthony Baxter's documentary You've Been Trumped used clips from the film, which was later written about by Forsyth himself.
beamish14 wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2019 8:20 pm
Another huge missed opportunity of a disc. I was really hoping it would include Forsyth's 1981 television short Andrina (which, being a BBC production, was probably too expensive to license, but still), Forsyth/Lancaster's 1989 advert, a commentary, an interview with Peter Riegert/Peter Capaldi/Burt Lancaster's daughter Joanna (who oversees her father's estate and has come to screenings of his films), etc.
Agreed, especially re: Andrina. I don't think it has ever had any screening or broadcast subsequent to its original showing on 30th November 1981 but I'd love to see it. There seems to be no materials in the BFI National Archive when I check online, but Jonathan Melville told me that he saw it a few years ago via a BFI copy that was thought lost. Forsyth actually met Capaldi when visiting his landlady, who was the costume designer on Andrina. I think BBC licences tend to be cheaper for companies outside of the UK, hence why Criterion has a history of licensing from them.
colinr0380 wrote:
Tue Jun 18, 2019 1:31 am
But I think I am most excited by the potential of Being Human turning up now! (Though Gregory's Girl would probably be a safer bet if they did more Bill Forsyth)
I've dreamt of the BFI or Criterion digging up Forsyth's original cut of Being Human from the Warner vaults, if it even still exists.

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Drucker
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#10 Post by Drucker » Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:33 am

Been meaning to check out Gregory's Girl and excited for this. Housekeeping was such a wonderful film and great release by Indicator, and I'm looking forward to catching more of his work.
Last edited by Drucker on Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Roscoe
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#11 Post by Roscoe » Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:53 am

Dare we hope for COMFORT AND JOY? Dare we? I'd love to get a supplement to define what a "gunzul cake" really is.

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barryconvex
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#12 Post by barryconvex » Sat Jun 22, 2019 1:34 am

Gregory's Girl was run practically non stop by HBO in the early 80s and despite not having seen it since then i recall it vividly and very fondly. But for some reason Local Hero has remained on my unseen list despite that fondness and despite the urgings of respected sources going back decades. Looking forward to filling a gap that's existed for far too long..

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MichaelB
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#13 Post by MichaelB » Sun Jun 23, 2019 4:22 am

Presumably HBO broadcast the horrible dubbed version? As with That Sinking Feeling, Gregory’s Girl was never originally intended to play outside Scotland, and the original Glaswegian accents are startlingly strong by the standards of what would be greenlit today - but they’re also authentic in a way that the dub track very much isn’t.

(The whole of the UK got the original version, which is commendably purist, although I daresay it was only after it became a huge surprise hit that it was considered worth redubbing it for US sales that must have seemed like an impossible pipe dream not that much earlier.)

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colinr0380
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#14 Post by colinr0380 » Sun Jun 23, 2019 7:35 am

By the way, this is probably the most wonderful use of the red telephone box in cinema. Well, this and Peter Greenaway's logic problem- styled paen to it in Dear Phone!

beamish14
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#15 Post by beamish14 » Sun Jun 23, 2019 4:54 pm

It's so bizarre that Lord Puttnam's name is on the cover and even he isn't interviewed on the disc! His career is so closely intertwined with Forsyth's.

Calvin
Joined: Sun Apr 10, 2011 11:12 am

Re: 994 Local Hero

#16 Post by Calvin » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:06 pm

A UK release is also coming in September, but not from Criterion. The only extra it appears to have in common is The Making of Local Hero; it loses the other archival extras, and adds a commentary with Forsyth and Mark Kermode, and a new interview with Mark Knopfler. It also has an interview with Bill Forsyth, which I would guess will be different to those on the Criterion.

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Randall Maysin
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#17 Post by Randall Maysin » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:52 pm

beamish14 wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2019 8:20 pm
Forsyth/Lancaster's 1989 advert

What's this? My (close to worthless) powers of internet have yielded nothing!

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What A Disgrace
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#18 Post by What A Disgrace » Thu Jun 27, 2019 6:53 pm

Gotta go with the UK release, sorry Criterion.

beamish14
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#19 Post by beamish14 » Fri Jun 28, 2019 2:19 am

Randall Maysin wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:52 pm
beamish14 wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2019 8:20 pm
Forsyth/Lancaster's 1989 advert

What's this? My (close to worthless) powers of internet have yielded nothing!

They reunited for a British Railways (I think) commercial. I can't find it online, unfortunately.

Apperson
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#20 Post by Apperson » Fri Aug 09, 2019 9:24 am

The specs have been updated, now has:
Audio commentary from 2018 featuring director Bill Forsyth and film critic Mark Kermode

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What A Disgrace
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#21 Post by What A Disgrace » Fri Aug 09, 2019 9:43 am

So I can happily cancel my pre-order of the UK disc.

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olmo
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#22 Post by olmo » Thu Aug 15, 2019 12:43 pm

What A Disgrace wrote:
Fri Aug 09, 2019 9:43 am
So I can happily cancel my pre-order of the UK disc.
Hope your purchase hinged on the Forsyth aspect of the commentary and not the sickeningly too earnest by 'alf Kermode.

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FrauBlucher
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#23 Post by FrauBlucher » Sat Aug 17, 2019 1:58 pm


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whaleallright
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Re: 994 Local Hero

#24 Post by whaleallright » Sat Aug 24, 2019 11:28 am

beamish14 wrote:
Sun Jun 23, 2019 4:54 pm
It's so bizarre that Lord Puttnam's name is on the cover and even he isn't interviewed on the disc! His career is so closely intertwined with Forsyth's.
Puttnam must have had some contractual arrangement that necessitated his name being placed on the cover of this release, no? (The only other explanation I can come up with is Forsyth encouraging Criterion to do this, out of gratitude for Puttnam having championed Forsyth's work.)

As a kind of side note, I always find it weird that Criterion so seldom allows actors' names on their video covers. (One of the more glaring examples is Young Mr. Lincoln; it's hardly a knock against John Ford, whose name is huge on the cover, to say that Henry Fonda, whose name is not to be found on it, dominates the film.) There's a perverse quality to this, since in the mainstream cinema actors tend to be a film's bigger draw than directors, with a precious few exceptions. I doubt it's quite that willful, but Criterion's policy seems like an overcorrection to me, an echo of some of the more excessive midcentury strains of auteurism that would blot out any contributions but those of the director.

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