Released five years after Bruce Lee’s death, this eccentrically entertaining kung fu curio combines footage from an unfinished project directed by and starring Lee with original material shot by Enter the Dragon director Robert Clouse to create an entirely new work that testifies to the actor’s enduring place in the pop culture imagination. Using stand-ins, doubles, and archival footage to compensate for Lee’s absence, Game of Death follows a martial arts movie star who, when he’s threatened by a cutthroat crime syndicate intent on controlling his career, must take his skills from the soundstage to the streets. It all builds to an exhilarating climax that is pure Lee: a tour de force of martial arts mastery in which the legend himself, clad in iconic yellow jumpsuit, fights his way up a multi-level pagoda, with a towering Kareem Abdul-Jabbar among his formidable opponents.
This widely acclaimed film from Soviet director Elem Klimov is a stunning, senses-shattering plunge into the dehumanizing horrors of war. As Nazi forces encroach on his small village in present-day Belarus, teenage Flyora (Aleksei Kravchenko, in one of the screen’s most searing depictions of anguish since Renée Falconetti’s Joan of Arc) eagerly joins the Soviet resistance.
DCP, Blu-ray, DVD
Mathieu Kassovitz took the film world by storm with La haine, a gritty, unsettling, and visually explosive look at the racial and cultural volatility in modern-day France, specifically the low-income banlieue districts on Paris’s outskirts.
DCP, 35 mm, Blu-ray, DVD