DVD Mystery Train [DVD] [Criterion Collection] (DVD 6957200),
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Mystery Train [DVD] [Criterion Collection]

  • R
  • DVD
  • 1 disc
  • Region 1 USA/CA (info)
  • Jim Jarmusch broadens his scope with this episodic tale of a night in the life of several Memphis, Tennessee, inhabitants who unknowingly find themselves lodging at the same hotel. The first episode, "Far from Yokohama," is about two Japanese teenagers (Youki Kudoh and Masatoshe Nagase) on a pilgrimage to the birthplace of rock and roll, Sun Studios, where Elvis Presley and Carl Perkins got their start. In the second story, "A Ghost," two strangers meet and become friends. One is an Italian tourist, Luisa (Nicoletta Braschi), who is on the way back to Rome in order to bury her husband; the other, Dee Dee (Elizabeth Bracco), has just dumped her British boyfriend, Johnny (Joe Strummer). During the middle of the night, Luisa is visited by the ghost of Elvis. "Lost in Space," the final segment, brings all the characters together briefly, as Johnny goes on a violent drinking spree with Dee Dee's brother (Steve Buscemi) and another friend (Rick Aviles). Throughout all of this, the hotel's night clerk (Screamin' Jay Hawkins) and bellboy (Cinque Lee) listen to the local radio and engage in aimless conversation. Jarmusch once again uses his distinct sense of humor to dispel cultural myths--this time it's the legend of Memphis--by placing an eclectic group of tourists into an unquestionably American environment.
  • Credits
    Elizabeth Bracco, Youki Kudoh, Masatoshi Nagase, Joe Strummer, Nicoletta Braschi, Steve Buscemi, Cinque Lee, Cinqu Lee, Sy Richardson, Tom Noonan, Sara Driver, Vondie Curtis-Hall, Vondie Curtis Hall, Rockets Redglare, Tom Waits, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, Jay Hawkins
  • Critic Reviews
    "...Evocatively photographed...touched with comic inspiration..."
    Sight and Sound

    "...Blissful....[Jarmusch is especially] good with actors. The MYSTERY TRAIN performers fly..."
    New York Times

    "...[The film] lingers on in the memory....Jarmusch's conscious, Downtown deadpan style belies a wonderful romantic spirit. He has a sense of time -- of the moment, and of time passing -- that is heartbreaking..."
    Film Comment

    "...It's a jewel-like, minimalist film about a group of crisscrossing wanderers and outlaws on one lyrically strange day and night in Memphis -- where haphazard-seeming events slowly merge into entrancingly complex figures and patterns..."
    Los Angeles Times

    "Working with German cinematographer Robby Muller, Jarmusch shoots MYSTERY TRAIN with a cool reserve and an outsider's eye for overlooked detail..."
    A.V. Club

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