With some irony, Paul Schrader’s potent film about American blue collar workers in the 1970s, the twilight of the car manufacturing boom, and trade union corruption gets its best ever home video platform on UK Blu-ray courtesy of Indicator.
In one of the numerous added features of Indicator’s Blue Collar Blu-ray, writer, director, producer and former actor Keith Gordon says it’s somewhat ironic that this very American film gets its best ever home video platform courtesy of a UK distributor. The film enjoyed a dedicated audience on its release but never earned the wider favour seen for writer-director Paul Schrader’s better known film American Gigolo. In the UK the film has always enjoyed a strong, if relatively small, following. That’s likely to grow thanks to this release.
Gordon, a long-time fan of the film, features in an extended interview on the Blu-ray in which he discusses why the film resonates with him. He talks about some production anecdotes, Schrader’s skill as a writer and director, and why the film hit so close to the bone then, relating its themes and anger to today’s political and cultural climate.
In addition to this brand new exclusive, Indicator has also mined the archives to present Visions, a Channel 4 interview with Paul Schrader from 1982 in which the writer-director talks about his recently released film Cat People as well as others he has worked on including Blue Collar. Presented in two versions – the broadcast cut with its original Tony Rayns introduction runs at 21 mins) while the complete interview rushes are presented alongside a newly recorded introduction by Rayns (running at 58 mins).
Other features on the Blu-ray include an audio commentary with writer-director Paul Schrader and author Maitland McDonagh and a recording of Paul Schrader’s BFI Masterclass which plays as an alternate commentary track over the film.
There’s also a limited edition exclusive 40-page booklet with a new essay by Brad Stevens, archival interviews with director Paul Schrader, and film credits.
Blue Collar from Indicator is released January 22 in the UK.