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Chinatown Celebrates Its 50th Anniversary with a Very Special Release


Chinatown Celebrates Its 50th Anniversary with a Very Special Release


Summary

  • Paramount is celebrating
    Chinatown
    ‘s 50th anniversary with a limited set that has a new transfer and restoration, special features, the sequel film, and a commentary track with writer Robert Towne and David Fincher.
  • The neo-noir classic, inspired by the California water wars, remains a cinematic masterpiece with Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway delivering exceptional performances.
  • Paramount’s 4K Ultra HD restoration vividly captures the film’s unique look and atmosphere, promising a new viewing experience.



Forget its original release, Jake. It’s Chinatown‘s 50th anniversary. That’s right, Paramount is celebrating one of its flagship films with a meaty limited edition set that is filled with incredible special features, releasing June 18, 2024. Regardless of those features, though, the main draw is the first 4K UHD transfer of the legendary film, which should let audiences experience it with completely new eyes. Additionally, the set includes a commentary track that is sure to be golden, combining Chinatown writer Robert Towne and modern-day filmmaker David Fincher, who has undoubtedly been influenced deeply by the film.



A Legendary Neo-Noir Film Gets a Pristine Update

Chinatown

Chinatown

Release Date
June 20, 1974

Runtime
130

Chinatown is considered the greatest neo-noir of all time (though The Long Goodbye is stiff competition), and follows private detective Jake Gittes (Jack Nicholson). Hired by a beautiful socialite (Faye Dunaway) to investigate her husband’s extra-marital affair, Gittes is swept into a maelstrom of double dealings and deadly deceits, uncovering a web of personal and political scandals that come crashing together for one unforgettable night. The Roman Polanski film flips the script on noir and presents a too-bright, sunburned Southern California overrun by sweaty men in suits.


The film also stars the great director John Huston in probably his best role as an actor, and was produced by the legendary Robert Evans (The Godfather, Rosemary’s Baby). Chinatown was originally released on June 26, 1974, and received widespread critical acclaim along with 11 Oscar nominations, including Best Picture. In 1991, the film was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the United States National Film Registry as being “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant.”

Chinatown Limited Edition 4K
Paramount

According to Paramount’s release statement:

“The Limited-Edition Paramount Presents release includes the restored film on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc for the first time ever. The exacting restoration was completed using the original camera negative, which was repaired using the latest technology in areas that had been previously damaged. The result is a sparkling 4K Ultra HD presentation that uses more of the best possible source than previous masters and faithfully captures the film’s distinctively dreamy and simultaneously realistic look.”


Related

20 Greatest Film Noir Directors of All Time

Cynical, moody, and sometimes menacing, film noir is notoriously difficult to do just right. These 20 directors were true masters of noir.

The Two Jakes and the Dozen Special Features

Chinatown was actually a planned trilogy, and the limited edition release also includes its long-delayed sequel, The Two Jakes, with Nicholson not only reprising his role but also directing the script by Robert Towne. You can take a look at the extensive special features below:


  • A State of Mind: Author Sam Wasson On Chinatown – Sam Wasson, film historian and bestselling author of The Big Goodbye: Chinatown and the Last Years Of Hollywood, on the importance of the film and its legacy.
  • Chinatown Memories – Legendary producer Hawk Koch shares stories from his time as assistant director on the film.
  • The Trilogy That Never Was – Sam Wasson discusses the planned third installment of what would have been a trio of movies featuring the character Jake Gittes.
  • Commentary by screenwriter Robert Towne with David Fincher
  • Water and Power: The Aqueduct, The Aftermath, The River & Beyond
  • Chinatown: An Appreciation
  • Chinatown: The Beginning and the End
  • Chinatown: Filming
  • Chinatown: Legacy
  • Theatrical Trailer

You can pre-order the limited edition of Chinatownhere, out June 18, 2024, and in the meantime, the film can be streamed on Prime Video, MGM+, or on Paramount+ through the link below:

Watch Chinatown

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