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USA drama 1993 color 97 min.
Director: Allen and Albert Hughes
CLV: $99.95 - available
2 discs, catalog # CC1371L

Albert and Allen Hughes have brought a raw, edgy, urban sophistication to two complex narratives, deftly reconfiguring genres to reflect the social and political realities of the inner city. Working on their first special edition, they told us they first learned their craft from Martin Scorsese, listening to his Criterion commentaries. Here they return the favor, sharing their filmmaking experiences for future generations.

This powerhouse filmmaking debut, directed by 21-year-old twins Allen and Albert Hughes, presents a harrowing view of life in inner city hell. Splendid screenwriting, cinematography, and editing place the story of Caine (Tyrin Turner), a teenager in Watts, into a constantly shifting, predatory world. Deftly referencing both the strife-ridden history of Watts and the contemporary media's culture of violence, Menace II Society was 1993's sleeper hit. Comparable to Martin Scorsese's Mean Streets, Menace II Society captures a sense of life at relentless risk with complete conviction.

This Criterion special edition of Menace II Society includes:

  • A new widescreen transfer
  • Audio commentary by directors Allen and Albert Hughes
  • Unrated director's cut with footage missing from the original theatrical release
  • A selection of early Hughes brothers short films
  • Audition and rehearsal video
  • Storyboards, stills, and extensive production documentation
  • The original theatrical trailer

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