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After Hours (1985) is Receiving a Criterion Release

After Hours

The Iconic Soho thriller

The 1985 cult classic After Hours has been announced as one of the most recent films to receive the Criterion package. Slated for release in July, the announcement includes additional releases for films such as The Watermelon Woman and Breathless. After Hours is Martin Scorsese’s 8th film to be released as a part of the Criterion Collection.

As part of the Criterion release, the beloved neo-noir film will be restored with a new director-approved 4k UHD release which will be released alongside a Blu-Ray release. 

A Nightmarish Date That Never Ends

Griffin Dunne (Paul Hackett) – An ordinary word processor – finds himself in the middle of scandal, controversy, and crime after deciding to visit a woman he met earlier that night. Encountered by eccentric artists, deeply concerned neighborhood inhabitants, and a toxic couple, Dunne’s desperation to escape the surreality of Soho ensues.

Dunne is unknown to the Soho residents – an outsider to their world of familiar faces – emphasizing his descent down the rabbit hole. He is reactive to the kafkaesque environment that envelops him and is subject to the horrors of the neon labyrinth with escape just out of reach.

After Hours

Background and Importance

Martin Scorsese directed this film after the disappointing cancellation of his passion project The Last Temptation of Christ (Which would come to fruition in 1988). While the film was initially attached to Tim Burton, he stepped aside to allow Scorsese to take the director’s seat on what has been considered his most underrated project. As a stark departure from the expansive religious epic The Last Temptation of Christ was setting out to be, After Hours is a street-level dark comedy. 

While it’s common for fans to see Scorsese as a safe bet for one of the greatest living filmmakers today, this film came after a list of box office and pre-production failures. Aside from The Last Temptation of Christ and its cancellation, he was also hot off the box office failure of The King of Comedy. Other films, such as New York, New York, and Raging Bull, marked the filmmaker’s inability to replicate box office successes such as Taxi Driver despite common acclaim. 

After Hours is a noticeably small-scale film. This film was an attempt for Scorsese to rekindle the magic he found in his early filmmaking career and was realized as an uncharacteristically different film for the director. Notably, common themes of Religiosity, toxic masculinity, and utilization of a relatively unknown cast differentiate this film from others in his catalog. 

This era of Scorsese’s career would prove worth exploring as his titles from the late 70s to the late 80s would become cult favorites among film fans. After Hours joins Raging Bull (1980) and The Last Temptation of Christ (1988) in the Criterion collection.

Criterion Package

The upcoming After Hours’ Criterion release comes with re-envisioned artwork – provided by Sister Hyde – and a slew of bonus content in the special edition. Bonus content includes a documentary of the making of the film, deleted scenes, and audio commentary on the film from 2004 (with additional comments recorded in 2023). 

The After Hours Criterion release is scheduled for July 11, with additional films from the collection released the same month.



After Hours (1985). Official Warner Brothers Trailer. 

Source: Dead Talk Live

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Thomas Cooper is a writer for Dead Talk News based in San Antonio, Texas. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Communications with a concentration in Digital Media from the University of Texas at San Antonio. Aside from film, Thomas also loves to talk about vinyl record collecting and custom PC builds.