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BFI Dual Format Editions in June

The BFI have announced the UK release of two Dual Format Edition titles on 20th June 2011. They are:

Robinson in Ruins - Patrick Keiller's third film-essay in his Robinson series, after London and Robinson in Space, sees him revisit the English landscape, this time applying his beguiling wit and acute powers of observation to our current environmental and economic predicament. A blend of fiction and documentary, Robinson in Ruins presents the findings of the trilogy’s mysterious would-be scholar and original narrator, Robinson, who, after having been released from prison, has been haunting the Oxfordshire countryside with a ciné camera. When his film cans and notebook are discovered in a derelict caravan, the results of his search for the origins of capitalist catastrophe in the English landscape are assembled as a film that is narrated by their institution’s co-founder (voiced by Vanessa Redgrave).

Trailer: YouTube

A 2-DVD set containing London and Robinson in Space is also being re-issued on the same date.

Features on the Robinson in Ruins Dual Format Edition include:

  • Disc 1: BD25 / 1080p / 24fps / PCM mono audio (48k/24-bit)
  • Disc 2: DVD9 / PAL / PCM mono audio (48k/16-bit)
  • Standard Definition and High Definition presentation
  • Optional effects-only soundtrack
  • Optional feature hard-of-hearing subtitles (English)
  • Panel discussion: Patrick Keiller, Doreen Massey, Patrick Wright and Matthew Flintham on their project The Future of Landscape and the Moving Image (2011, 15 mins, DVD only)
  • Original theatrical release trailer (DVD only)
  • Downloadable PDF of Doreen Massey’s essay: ‘Landscape/space/politics’ (DVD only)
  • Illustrated booklet with introduction by Patrick Keiller, notes by Doreen Massey and review by Mark Fisher

The Great White Silence - Herbert Ponting’s 1924 film is the extraordinary, heart-breaking official record of Captain Scott's legendary final expedition to the South Pole, presented here fully restored by the BFI National Archive with a new musical score by Simon Fisher Turner.

Ponting’s footage begins in 1910 with the departure of the Terra Nova from New Zealand’s south island, for the Antarctic – a perilous journey during which animals and stores were lost overboard in a gale and the ship had to break through unusual amounts of pack ice for 400 miles to reach the Great Ice Barrier. Ponting took some of his most impressive footage – showing the ship breaking through the ice – from a makeshift platform over the side of the ship. Once arrived on Ross Island, Ponting filmed almost every aspect of the expedition: the scientific work, life in camp and the local wildlife – including killer whales, seals, Antarctic skuas and the characterful Adélie penguins. What he was unable to film, he boldly recreated back home. Most importantly, Ponting recorded the preparations for the assault on the Pole – from the trials of the caterpillar-track sledges to clothing and cooking equipment – giving us a real sense of the challenges faced by the expedition.

Now, the BFI National Archive – custodian of the expedition negatives – has restored the film using the latest photochemical and digital techniques and reintroduced the film's sophisticated use of colour. The alien beauty of the landscape is brought dramatically to life, showing the world of the expedition in brilliant detail. Last week, the BFI was the winner of 'Best Archival Restoration Title' for the film at the Focal International Awards 2011.

Trailer: YouTube

Features include:
  • Region 0
  • Disc 1: BD50 / 1080p / 24fps / PCM 2.0 audio (48kHz/24-bit)
  • Disc 2: DVD9 / PAL / Dolby Digital 2.0 audio (48kHz)
  • Feature presented in both High Definition and Standard Definition
  • 90º South (1933, 72 mins): Herbert Ponting’s final sound version of the legendary footage he shot in 1910–11
  • The Great White Silence: How Did They Do It? (2011, 20 mins): new documentary about the restoration
  • The Sound of Silence (2011, 13 mins): new documentary about Simon Fisher Turner’s score
  • Location field recordings (2010, 4 mins): celebrated sound recordist Chris Watson’s audio document of the interior of Scott’s polar expedition hut, presented in both 2.0 stereo and 5.1 surround
  • Archive newsreel items (1910-1925, 5 mins, DVD only): a selection of archival film extracts which capture the departure and return of the expedition party
  • Illustrated booklet including an extract from Francis Spufford’s I May Be Some Time

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