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In Life During Wartime, independent filmmaker Todd Solondz explores contemporary American existence and the nature of forgiveness with his customary dry humor and queasy precision. The film functions as a distorted mirror image of Solondz’s acclaimed 1998 dark comedy Happiness, its emotionally stunted characters now groping for the possibility of change in a post-9/11 world. Happiness’s grim New Jersey setting is transposed mainly to sunny Florida, but the biggest twist is that new actors fill the roles from the earlier film—including Shirley Henderson, Allison Janney, and Ally Sheedy as alarmingly dissimilar sisters, and Ciarán Hinds hauntingly embodying a reformed pedophile. Shot in expressionistic tones by cinematographer extraordinaire Ed Lachman, Solondz’s film finds the humor in the tragic and the tragic in the everyday.

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Special Features New digital transfer, supervised and approved by director of photography Ed Lachman (with DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition) Ask Todd, an audio Q&A with director Todd Solondz in which he responds to viewers’ questions Making “Life During Wartime,” a new documentary featuring interviews with actors Shirley Henderson, Ciarán Hinds, Allison Janney, Michael Lerner, Paul Reubens, Ally Sheedy, and Michael Kenneth Williams, as well as on-set footage New interview with Lachman Original theatrical trailer PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic David Sterritt

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CC574 Life During Wartime Blu Ray DVD (2010/Todd Solondz) $39.95 $35.99