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LIMBO: DVD

SYNOPSIS:
A small Alaskan town, once rich on gold mining, now surviving on fishing, is the sort of place people run from and run to, depending on their circumstances. On the edge of Alaska’s great stretches of nature, it is where Joe Gastineau (David Strathairn), a fisherman traumatised by an accident at sea years before, now lives quietly. Alone. Into Joe’s land-locked life comes singer Donna de Angelo (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio) and her disaffected daughter Noelle (Vanessa Martinez). When Joe’s fast-talking half-brother Bobby (Casey Siemaszko) returns to town and asks Joe for a favour, the lives of the three characters are forever altered.

"John Sayles' commentary is the only significant feature on this DVD, but it's a good one. Detailed, informative explicit narration like this serves two purposes: for the general audience it creates a strong, direct link into the film's innards which serves to underscore the elements that we drew out of the experience when first watching the film. But it also has a second function, which is akin to a lesson in filmmaking, especially for new filmmakers. He discusses the process with pragmatic anecdotes, illuminating the reasons for certain shots, edits and dissolves. He canvasses sound recording issues and general difficulties in everyday filmmaking. In the process he also reveals something about his personal style. For instance, he likes to do things more 'for real' than some other directors, such as singing, driving and arguing - in the latter he uses two cameras for best results. More 'real' results. We also learn a bit about Alaska and how he uses the picture postcard shots to take us into the extraordinary landscape and to drive home how those same beautiful horizons hold deadly danger. Nature is nature; it doesn't have human characteristics. As for the controversial ending, Sayles explains his reasons - but emphasises it is the only one that he feels is right for a film dealing with personal emotional risks of the scale his characters have to tackle. Technically the transfer is faultless, and is certain to be a treasured addition to a film lover's collection."
Andrew L. Urban

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LIMBO (M15+)
(US)

CAST: Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, David Strathairn, Vanessa Martinez, Kris Kristofferson

DIRECTOR/WRITER/EDITOR: John Sayles
RUNNING TIME: 121 minutes

DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Columbia TriStar

DVD RELEASE: March, 2000

RRP: $39.95

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