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1. Code 46
$11.96 $9.00 list($14.95)
2. 24 Hour Party People
$17.99 $13.95 list($19.99)
3. Welcome to Sarajevo
$44.99 $37.21 list($49.99)
4. Cinema Europe - The Other Hollywood
$13.46 $5.97 list($14.95)
5. The Claim
$24.29 $10.45 list($26.99)
6. In This World
$13.48 $9.83 list($14.98)
7. Wonderland
$269.99 list($24.95)
8. Jude
$26.96 $16.50 list($29.95)
9. Butterfly Kiss

1. Code 46
Director: Michael Winterbottom
list price: $26.98
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Asin: B00067BBMI
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 6195
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Amazon.com

Like Gattaca did before it, Code 46 extrapolates from the present to posit a chilling, dystopian look at our genetically regimented future. In the corporate-controlled, near-future scenario presented by prolific director Michael Winterbottom and his regular screenwriter Frank Cottrell Boyce, nations and languages have merged to form a polyglot society in which genetic imperfections are avoided by the strict enforcement of Code 46, which prohibits sex between people who share 100%, 50%, or even 25% matching DNA. As an insurance-fraud investigator in Shanghai to investigate the issuance of forged passports (a major offense in an overcrowded world), Tim Robbins meets his prime suspect (Samantha Morton, echoing her role in Minority Report), and their violation of Code 46 has tragic and ultimately dehumanizing repercussions. Fascinating as a "what-if" scenario, Winterbottom's film is more successful as a melancholy mood-piece than a science-fiction tale. While the plot and characters suffer from occasionally vague definition, Code 46 offers a fascinating study of human longing in an age of oppressive globalization. --Jeff Shannon ... Read more


2. 24 Hour Party People
Director: Michael Winterbottom
list price: $14.95
our price: $11.96
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Asin: B00007BK2N
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 3604
Average Customer Review: 4.09 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (55)

5-0 out of 5 stars Manchester music scene
The film "24 Hour Party People" is presented in documentary style by narrator Steve Coogan who plays Tony Wilson--a television journalist. The film begins in the late 70s with Wilson lucky enough to attend an early Sex Pistols concert (with footage thrown in). Wilson's assignments lack a certain seriousness, but he compensates by promoting the Punk Rock scene in Manchester. Wilson forms Factory Records "an experiment in human nature," opens the Hacienda club in Manchester, and explains that the music scene "is like a helix"--as one trend ascends--another descends. And we see trends come and go.

The film charts the rise of Joy Division and the band's metamorphosis into New Order, and the introduction of Rave music "when even the white man dances." If you enjoyed the music of the 80s or have an interest in music history, you will probably enjoy this film. Coogan adds an amusing touch as the enterpreneur Tony Wilson.

4-0 out of 5 stars Happy Happy Joy Joy
"24 Hour Party People" was among the most entertaining motion pictures released in 2002, and easily one of the most engaging and innovative films that I've seen in years. Although certainly not for everyone, if you've an interest in the music industry, the UK indie scene, and/or Factory Records (of course) then this is mandatory viewing material.

I'll not bore you with a summary of the plot...but it's no secret that there's almost as much fiction as fact in this comedic, documentary-style account of Tony Wilson and his legendary Factory record label. However, there are numerous exceptional portrayals of the central figures from Factory's sordid history, and the city of Manchester is a star in itself, functioning as the drab backdrop to the movie's colorful story.

The DVD has two featurettes - a ten minute 'behind the scenes' piece (obligatory for almost all DVD releases) and a five minute quickie about the real Tony Wilson. Neither contain particularly engrossing content but they're welcome just the same. There are eleven deleted scenes, only a couple of which are really worth a toss (ironically, the cut scene with Vini Reilly that Steve Coogan's Tony Wilson actually references in the film isn't even included). There's a photo gallery with at least 40 stills taken during the film's production, although including pictures of the real people and places depicted in the movie would have made more sense. I've not listened to the running commentary by the real Tony Wilson or his celluloid facsimile, but I understand that both are enlightening.

With the exception of the James Bond series, MGM Home Video is notorious for lacking in the special features sections of their DVD releases, so this product is actually commendable on their part. Of course, the UK DVD release of "24HPP" (complete with a Factory catalog number - FACDVD 424) is a 2-disc set packed with extras vastly superior to what's offered to us poor Yanks. So while I'd give the film five stars, the DVD rates only three, thus my average of four stars overall.

5-0 out of 5 stars Punk Rave and Dry Humor.... What a combo...
Great movie, lots-o-british humor, lots-o-british music history. Too much Happy Mondays, not enough about New Order but you get to see the birth of the rave scene which is very cool. Where else can you get a movie and see a guy hang himself while watching a chicken dance on his TV....

5-0 out of 5 stars Improves with Time
If you are a Joy Divion acolyte or something of that nature, you will not enjoy this film as much as if you are a devotee of Manchester's music scene in general. Somehow I made the transition from Joy Division fan to dj afficinado, so I found the whole thing quite excellent. What I have noticed is that things grow funnier with time. Steve Coogan's performance reveals itself funnier every time. Example: Ian C's funeral and he says, in the midst of all this gaudy crap, with a straight face: "That is the musical equivalent of Che Guevera." Absolutely hilarious.

5-0 out of 5 stars brilliant!
This was an especially fun movie for me to watch. These were my favorite bands in 1980, and it is fun to see them relived. There weren't many photos back then, and Factory Records had few, if any, liner notes.
The film has great cameos, such as Howard Devoto, and Marky Smith. I think it was well made, and anyone would enjoy it. ... Read more


3. Welcome to Sarajevo
Director: Michael Winterbottom
list price: $19.99
our price: $17.99
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Asin: B0000DZ3GD
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 9925
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4. Cinema Europe - The Other Hollywood
Director: Michael Winterbottom, Kevin Brownlow, David Gill, Dan Carter (II)
list price: $49.99
our price: $44.99
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Asin: 6305837171
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 26089
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Description

Where the art of filmmaking all began. An exciting visual presentation of the European silent film era, "Cinema Europe: The Other Hollywood" commemorates the birth of an art that would transform the 20th century. This stylish and historical documentary focuses on the early days of the movie industry and the enormous contribution made by Europe. Included is rarely seen footage from early movies and interviews with some of the film industry's pioneers. This fascinating documentary is produced by the award-winning team of Kevin Brownlow and David Gill and serves as a companion to their definitive "Hollywood" series. This six-hour series is narrated by critically acclaimed actor/director Kenneth Branagh with music composition by Carl Davis, Philip Appleby and Nic Raine. Part I: Where It all Began (Introductory Episode). Part II: Promised Land (Sweden). Part III: The Unchained Camera (Germany). Part IV: The Music of Light (France). Part V: Opportunity Lost (Britain). Part VI: End Of An Era (Finale). "Enlightens as it beguiles...with footage seldom, if ever, seen." Variety ... Read more


5. The Claim
Director: Michael Winterbottom
list price: $14.95
our price: $13.46
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Asin: B00005AX6G
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 28726
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Amazon.com

Thomas Hardy's The Mayor of Casterbridge has been transplanted to the edge of the American frontier in this vivid drama that didn't receive the theatrical exposure it deserved. Although top young actors adorn the movie's ads, the central character--Daniel Dillon, a man who runs the gold rush town of Kingdom Come--is played by little-known Peter Mullen. In the dead of winter in 1849, three people arrive in town, changing irrevocably Dillon's life. One is Donald Dalglish (Wes Bentley), the clear-thinking leader of a railroad prospect crew who will determine where the railroad line--and a new line of wealth--will be built. The others are a mother and daughter (Nastassja Kinski, Sarah Polley) who have a past connection to Dillon and the knowledge of how he became rich. As events unfold--in pure Hardy fashion--Dillon finds himself facing a crossroads, with one path leading to redemption. The cast is uniformly brilliant, but special praise must go to Mullen, who carries the film's dramatic weight, and to Bentley, who is so composed in a role completely dissimilar to his breakthrough work in American Beauty. Director Michael Winterbottom (who adapted another Hardy piece with his film Jude) and cinematographer Alwin H. Kuchler have fashioned their film after Robert Altman's landmark McCabe and Mrs. Miller in the natural, earthy feel of a frontier town. The film opened in 2000 and deservedly appeared on a few top 10 lists, then was rereleased the following year. --Doug Thomas ... Read more


6. In This World
Director: Michael Winterbottom
list price: $26.99
our price: $24.29
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Asin: B00018D3V4
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 20464
Average Customer Review: 4.62 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Michael Winterbottom's amazing In This World is a docudrama that reportedly re-creates the harrowing journey of two young Afghan males smuggled, one step at a time, from a long-established refugee camp in Pakistan across central Asia to their London destination. Shot with remarkable fluidity and narrative thoroughness in what appears many times to be dangerous situations with border guards and untrustworthy handlers (in Iran, Istanbul, Turkey, and France), In This World is anchored by non-actors Jamal Udin Torabi and Enayatullah, playing characters of the same names. The rapid pace and frequent fade-outs in this 88-minute film paradoxically force one's imagination to underscore the agonizing slowness and anxiety of the young men's trip, a technique that becomes nightmarish when Jamal and Enayat are locked for days, with other refugees, inside a ship's container. Winterbottom (24-Hour Party People) and his characteristically protean style maintain remarkable inventiveness throughout. --Tom Keogh ... Read more

Reviews (8)

4-0 out of 5 stars Two Refugees' Dangerous Journey from Pakistan to England
"In This World" is about a journey of two refugees from Pakistan, entirely shot in a semi-documentary style (meanig digital camera). Their hard times during the trek are realisticly presented largely owing to these non-professionals, and the film sometimes blurs the borderline between the reality and fiction.

Jamal (Jamal Udin Torabi) is an orphan living in the camp for refugees in Pakistan. He works at a brick factory, but the wages he receives are incredibly low. In the meantime, it is decided that Enayatullah (Enayatullah), Jamal's cousin, should go to one of the relative's in London, and Jamal jumps at this rare opportunity to see the world outside. The only problem is, their journey is nothing like business trip; as refugees, they have to hide from the authorities that would send them back to Pakistan if they should ever be discovered.

That last part is not the only obstacle they meet on the way. Jamal and Enayatullah have to depend on the smugglers who might not be trustworthy as the huge amount of money they have to give suggests. And even if they turn honest, the two travellers have to go on the hazardous route that might possibly take their lives away.

Michael Winterbottom, prolific English director, is no stranger to this subject matter; you might remember his "Welcome to Sarajevo" which covers the similar territory of refugees in Europe. However, "In This World" is free of any political messages or preaching words. It succeeds as the film is always about the two believable protagonists. Actually, director Winterbottom says that he was inspired to make this film when he heard the tragic news about the deaths of Chinese refugees found in a container at Dover Port. Considering the impact of shocking news that really happened in 2000, the film is quiet and even serene, and emotionally subdued.

But that method has its own defects; "In This World" is certainly real, but at the same time some viewers might find it a bit superficial. At least, the film can be called episodic, and though each episode is credibly shown on the screen, the film never allows us to understand the feelings of the two refugees at deeper level. In other words, we don't know why they head for Europe in spite of the enoumous danger waiting for them. The film's calmed down manner is successful, but it deprives the story of any dramatic elements.

Excuse me for giving the last complaint. Otherwise I find the film's credible portrait of the two refugees very touching, in particular when they exchange ordinary, daily conversations like buying ice cream. And the film is good at capturing the air of the dusty streets, crowded towns, modern cities (see the fashionable ladies in Tehran), and rocky mountains in Pakistan. One of the best Winterbottom films, and one of the best from UK, too.

4-0 out of 5 stars Authentic tale of refugees
This film tells the story of Jamal (Jamal Udin Torabi) and Enayat (Enayatullah), two young men who attempt the underground journey from a refugee camp in Afghanistan to London. Both characters are played by real refugees, non-actors who actually lived the type of story portrayed here. Director Michael Winterbottom followed the route taken by his protagonists, using guerilla filmmaking techniques such as filming in the actual locations, reportedly recording people, at times, when they did not know that they were being filmed. Night scenes were shot with night vision equipment and appear to show confrontations with actual border guards; the black-and-white photography of these sequences, in which the characters eyes seem to glow in the dark, takes on a nightmarish quality. Some may find the film slow--it does not develop its characters in a traditional way through scenes and dialogue, but shows them to show their qualities through the tenacity and courage that they display during their trip. The constant motion and eerie musical score contribute to a hypnotic, trance-like feel that imbues its characters with a sense of being entirely consumed with their journey from a dismal past into an uncertain, frightening future. The scene in a shipping container is particularly harrowing. The only sour note comes at the very beginning; Winterbottom mentions US responsibility for the plight of many Afghan refugees without acknowledging the complicity of the Taliban as well. Nevertheless, this is not an overtly political film, but rather a very human and intimate one about the terrible risks people are willing to take to get to a land of opportunity.

5-0 out of 5 stars Eldorado Within Reach For The Lucky Few
Aguirre, the egomaniac and mad conquistador embarked on a harsh and dangerous journey through the dark, hostile and uninviting jungles of Peru to look for his Eldorado, the city of gold.
In our time, and more realistically, determined and courageous people embark on a similarly harsh journey through land and sea to find their Eldorado,the land of opportunities.
In This World,the underrated masterpiece of British director Michael Winterbottom (Butterfly Kiss, Jude,The Claim 24 Hour Party People)is a film that goes with two young men on such a journey, from the Afghan refugee camps of Peshawar in Pakistan to London.
What is striking about this movie first of all is the fact that it is the first feature that follows the journey of illegal immigrants from start to finish. We have seen some very good examples of films that deal with the plight and conditions of refugees in various countries,like Majidi's Baran, Frears's Dirty Pretty Things, or Kechiche's La Faute A Voltaire, but never had a director approached this highly sensitive issue with such intimacy,and detail before:
He takes the viewer along this journey, step by difficult and dangerous step.
Moreover,the issue of illegal immigration has occupied many a headline in the media recently leading to a near hysteria of anxiety and fear about the coming 'flood' to Europe. While undoubtedly there is a problem, Winterbottom manages with his film to be the 'other voice', the one of compassion, sympathy and understanding,putting names,stories and faces to these people: an achievement he should be praised for.
The use of digital camera, some grainy shots and fast editing, all add a gritty realism, while the soft focus and beautiful scenery add a dreamy atmosphere that somehow reflect the dream that drives these people.
I was surprised how quickly I connected and sympathized with our two heroes, Jamal Udin Torab,and Enayatullah, themselves total amateurs and refugees (it reminded me of Iranian directors and how they have excelled in using complete amateurs with stunning results),and I anxiously followed them, and hoped for their safe arrival!! This is all due to the wonderful direction of Winterbottom.
There are some very powerful scenes,and the one inside the truck was truly haunting!!
We take so much for granted unfortunately, and most are lucky to associate the word 'journey' with a holiday, but there are others in this world, for whom this word means the difference between desolation and hope,and even life and death ,one they are willing to take no matter how high the cost is.
I am only grateful that Michael Winterbottom has taken that same journey with his camera, and with an eye that is totally involved and compassionate invited me in the safety of my own home to embark on it too..Do Not Miss It!

5-0 out of 5 stars Compelling Guerilla Film-Making
Just saw Michael Winterbottom's compelling new movie In this World. In it, two young Afghani men Enayat and Jamal attempt to make it from Peshawar, Pakistan to London, England via a human smuggling operation. It's a rigously realistic portrayal, essentially a fictional documentary, cinema verite shot in digital video. Winterbottom packs a lot in as Enayat and Jamal pass through a dizzying array of cities and cultures on their way towards . . . tragedy. The little help they receive along the way, they receive warily, wisely unsure whether to trust any who offer it.

The films opens with some facts:

>The United States spent almost 8 billion bombing the Taliban in Afghanistan
>Many Afghanis moved to Peshawar to avoid the bombing--and, I'm sure, because many were made homeless
>There are 14 million refugees in the world
>1 million of them are in Peshawar

Providing this already stunning movie with even more impact: the character of Jamal is portrayed by a young Afghani named Jamal who really made the journey himself. Winterbottom and his crew took him back to Peshawar where they recreated the story, a story anyway of a similar journey, simply by asking people to relive their experiences.

In this World deserves notice, and Winterbottom deserves, not an Academy award--those come too cheaply--but some sort of humanitarian award for drawing attention to the subject. (It did win the Golden Bear, the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury and the Peace Film Prize at the 2003 Berlin Film Festival.) I wish everyone who arranged and executed the bombing of Afghanistan could see it. We may be able to justify the freeing of the Afghani people from the treacherous Taliban, but can we really justify the lack of attention we're giving the innocents affected by that campaign?

If you've never seen any of Winterbottom's films, I recommend you see, well, all of these as well: Welcome to Sarajevo, Wonderland, The Claim, and 24 Hour Party People. I've also heard that Jude is excellent--both Jude and The Claim are based on Thomas Hardy novels (Jude, the Obscure and The Mayor of Casterbridge respectively).

Also, for an excellent, yet ultimately sobering movie set in Afghanistan before the fall of the Taliban, see Osama, a tragedy which depicts a 12-year-old girl who poses as a boy in order to earn money from her widowed mother and grandmother. I saw both movies within the past week, and together they provide an extraordinary glimpse at the harrowing existence our fellow humans endure in Afghanistan.

5-0 out of 5 stars In This World
This film is sensitive, moving and hard hitting.I loved it. I cried for the plight of asylum seekers and I am amazed at their endurance and hope. We should welcome such resourceful, hardy people with open arms. ... Read more


7. Wonderland
Director: Michael Winterbottom
list price: $14.98
our price: $13.48
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Asin: B000056N2Z
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 24011
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8. Jude
Director: Michael Winterbottom
list price: $24.95
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Asin: B00004Y7JN
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 29618
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9. Butterfly Kiss
Director: Michael Winterbottom
list price: $29.95
our price: $26.96
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Asin: B000065U2B
Catlog: DVD
Sales Rank: 19302
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