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Maurice Pialat's Van Gogh on DVD and Blu-ray in September

20 August 2013

Eureka Entertainment have announced that they will be releasing Van Gogh, considered by some to be the greatest film by legendary French filmmaker Maurice Pialat, seven of whose previous films have been given Masters of Cinema editions (including L'Enfance-nue and A nos amours).

One of the greatest films by one of the finest directors of the second half of the 20th century, Maurice Pialat's Van Gogh represents an ambitious and crowning achievement in its portrayal of the master painter's final weeks of life, almost exactly one-hundred years earlier.

Van Gogh, depicted by the remarkable actor/songwriter-singer Jacques Dutronc (Godard's Sauve qui peut (la vie)), has arrived at Auvers-sur-Oise to come under the care of Dr. Gachet (Gérard Séty) for his nervous agitation. Soon after the arrival of Vincent's brother Théo (Bernard Le Coq) and his wife, plein air portraiture and conviviality give way to the more crepuscular moods of brothels and cabarets, and the painter's anguished existence, tossing between money worries and an impassioned relationship with the doctor's teenage daughter, finally meets its terminal scene.

With its loosely factual and wholly inspired treatment of the last period of Van Gogh's life, Pialat's film applies an impressionist touch to the biographical picture — indeed, the filmmaker was himself an accomplished painter, and the personal resonance of the subject matter results in an epic, major late work.

"An extraordinary film....We flatter ourselves that if we were around in 1890, we would have recognized Van Gogh's genius and changed his fate. But we probably wouldn't have – just as we probably don't recognize the Van Goghs among us now. In this sad, brilliant film, Pialat gives us a terrible inkling of why." – Michael Wilmington, Los Angeles Times.

Van Gogh will be released for the first time on Blu-ray and on 2-disc DVD on 23rd September 2013 by Eureka as part of the Masters of Cinema series at the RRP of £19.99 for each.

Featuring a gorgeous new restoration of the film, appearing in 1080p on the Blu-ray, and new and improved English subtitles, both discs will have the following extra features:

  • Van Gogh (1965) – a short, early documentary about the painter, by Maurice Pialat

  • A 10-minute video interview with Pialat from 1991

  • A 50-minute video interview with Pialat from 1992

  • Video interviews with actors Jacques Dutronc and Bernard Le Coq; director of photography Emmanuel Machuel; and editor Yann Dedet

  • Deleted scenes

  • Original theatrical trailer

  • 56-page booklet containing a new and exclusive essay by critic Sabrina Marques; Jean-Luc Godard's letter to Pialat after seeing the film, followed by Godard's tribute to Pialat upon the director's passing in 2003; copious newly translated interviews with Maurice Pialat; images of Pialat's canvasses; rare imagery; and more.