Friday, February 12, 2010

Criterion Films .....getting soft on us?

I'm an avid film buff, and I have over 7,000 films in my basement. The top of the line has always been Criterion DVD's. "THE BEST" print available of those chosen are on Criterion. They are known for pristine images, wonderful sound & lots of extras such as director commentary and deleted scenes. You can expect to pay $40 to $50 per film. There are over 300 films that have received the royal treatment over the years. Up until now you could expect to find the big guys like Woo, Ford, Bergman, Hitchcock, W. Herzog, Ozu, Kurosawa, Renoir and Truffaut there. Recently though that's changed with newer titles like "A Christmas Tale", "Gomorrah", "Che" and "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" being added. I just read a NEWSWEEK article on this very issue and explanations are given. My question is have they sold out on what made them so unique in the first place. They are supposed to be preserving the important films! For something to be prestigious it has to matter. Criterion Films have always mattered that's why I own 30+ of them despite the cost. Personally I'm a little disappointed by their recent selections. I can think of a number of films more deserving than these. I'd love to hear from you readers what films you think are important enough to be preserved for years to come. I nominate our own Scott Phillips "Ice Harvest", and Tony Scott's "True Romance". I'll have to go to Criterion's website and check an updated list and get back to you all.


  1. Criterion's always had this zoroastrian streak to them. Remember the Criterion edition of Armageddon? I think some of their selections are about preserving the moment, capturing the essence of a stage in pop culture... Doesn't mean I wanna buy one though

  2. Mr. Ayers makes a great point. I believe, Rod, that I mentioned Armageddon to you, as well. I mean, you've got movies like M, #30, and then you've got #23, Robocop. You've got #100, The Beastie Boys Video Anthology. One man's trash..........