Unconventional Gems

To mark the 15th year of the Hubble Space Telescope’s active service, ESA scientist Lars Lindberg Christensen shepherded the creation of a surprisingly engaging documentary, Hubble: 15 Years of Discovery. SPV’s Region 0 DVD contains the feature-length doc plus some solid extras that include a bonus soundtrack CD by movetwo (musicians Axel Kornmesser and Markus Loffler), and some seriously trippy animation montages that capture the elegance of the various phenomena in the universe.

Uploaded this past Friday are a pair of DVDs from MVD Visual, covering two slices of arts and rebellion.

Hubert Selby Jr: It/ll Be Better Tomorrow is a sharply edited documentary from 2005, and contains one of Selby’s final interviews before his death in 2004. Best known for the brutal and bleak novels Last Exit to Brooklyn and Requiem for a Dream, the documentary has clips with colleagues, actors, associates, and filmmakers who knew and worked with him, and offers an edifying portrait of a man who never gave up when his health was withering away.

Also from MVD is Einstuerzende Neubauten: Palast der Republik, which has the cheeky performance art/industrial band playing works at East Germany’s derelict parliament building before the skeletal edifice was ordered demolished in 2006. The DVD features the 82 min. concert plus a full running commentary by the group, and bonus encore sets. Those curious about the old building and the controversial decision to raze another symbol of the GDR will find additional links in our review, which places the concert and the group’s songs in some historical context.

Coming up: horror to die for from Maple/Lions Gate, and Cinema of Death from Cult Epics, plus more soundtrack reviews, another book review, and some smut.


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