This may not actually require a blog post ... but I don't care. You know how earlier this week I mentioned the Tuesday release of the "Martin Scorsese Collection" of DVDs? Well this may lessen my little bits of indie cred, but I love Amazon.com. I didn't get around to actually ordering the thing until Tuesday; they had the lowest price, especially when you figure in their free shipping. They were even less expensive than both Best Buy and my usual DVD purchase point, Deep Discount DVD. The free shipping sometimes can take a while, and I wasn't guaranteed to receive the shipment any earlier than next Thursday.
Guess what just arrived! I am so psyched. I wish I had the time to simply sit home all weekend and watch every disc start-to-finish, including all the extras. I haven't seen Who's That Knocking at My Door or Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore in years -- probably not since I was a Blockbuster Video employee (yes, my background includes a cliche!) in 1989, jsut starting my cinematic self-education and would go on director binges, taking home everything. Mean Streets and GoodFellas I've watched more recently, but I'm probably most looking forward to watching After Hours, listening to that commentary (featuring not just Scorsese but also Griffin Dunne, Producer Amy Robinson, the brilliant DP Michael Ballhaus and the queen of all editors Thelma Schoonmaker) and watching the deleted scenes. I'll say it again, if you've never seen After Hours, rent it this weekend, especially if you're a New Yorker. Yeah, it depicts New York at a different time (the mid-80s), but sometimes it's interesting to see the things that have changed as well as those that haven't. It's a phenomenally funny movie which definitely doesn't get the respect or notoriety it deserves as part of Scorsese's oeuvre.
Personally, I'm thankful to After Hours for another reason as well. If it weren't for this film, Rosanna Arquette may not have been a presenter at the American Cinematheque's Moving Pictures Ball honoring Scorsese back in 1991. Yours truly was such a Scorsese fanatic by that point that I managed to weasel my way into attending as a writer for the UCLA Daily Bruin. When Arquette tripped onto the stage relatively early in the proceedings to announce the winner of the evening's raffle, it didn't take long to see that she had been drinking just a wee little bit -- if a wee little bit means like the brown bear with an affinity for Rainier Beer. She stumbled, slurred, laughed, almost fell down a few times, and was actually the unintentional comedic highlight of the entire evening. In fact, other than the certainty that I was there, I don't really remember much else that happened that night ... except for Arquette's "performance." And I know I wasn't drunk because I was only 20, looked 15, and had a complete inability to convince anyone to serve me. Anyway, you won't see that evening on any of the DVDs, but her performance as the catalyst to Dunne's one crazy night in SoHo is spot-on, so instead of hitting the bars and clubs one night, stay in (but go out) with After Hours.