Here is an interesting new release available now from the Violet Crown's Virtual Cinema as well as a new title currently available for streaming.
Video on Demand
"Helmut Newton: The Bold & The Beautiful": The life and career of provocative photographer Helmut Newton is detailed in this engaging documentary from director Gero von Boehm. Newton grew up in a wealthy Jewish family in Berlin before the rise of Hitler. His family members split up and fled Germany in 1938, and he eventually ended up in Australia, where he lived for many years and found some post-war success by taking photos. By the time he and his wife moved to Paris in the early ’60s, he made a name for himself with the striking images he was capturing for the fashion industry. Into the ’70s and ’80s, his work had become increasingly sexualized. You might have seen his pictures in Vogue, but they were just as likely to be in Playboy. Along with archival footage and words from the man himself, we get new interviews with some of his favorite subjects like Grace Jones, Isabella Rossellini and Charlotte Rampling. All of these incredible women and many more detail their most iconic photo shoots. From targeted portrait work to highly stylized erotica with a flair for fetishism and fantasy, this film focuses on his friends and defenders but doesn't shy away from his detractors. Some of the most fascinating footage here comes from a French talk show in the ’70s where feminist icon and activist Susan Sontag derides the misogynistic nature of his work. It does feel a little strange that this film took so long to surface, as most of the direct interviews with Newton featured were filmed in Los Angeles when he was living at the Chateau Marmont before being tragically killed in a car accident when leaving the hotel in 2004. Love him or hate him, Newton's work pushed the boundaries and helped to change the face of fashion photography forever. (Digital rental available through the virtual cinema at violetcrown.com — can be easily viewed through the Kino Now app on Amazon Fire Sticks, Apple TV and Roku devices)
Also on streaming services
"Motherless Brooklyn": Written, produced, and directed by Edward Norton, this adaptation of Jonathan Lethem's novel seemed like a surefire bet during awards season last year for Warner Bros. but ended up with a lone Golden Globe nomination for Daniel Pemberton's score. Multi-hyphenate Norton also stars as a private eye with Tourette syndrome. While the book had a contemporary setting, the movie transports the story back into the late ’50s to deliver a pulpy slice of neo-noir. (HBO Max)