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Criterion Announces March Titles

Posted December 17, 2012 05:02 PM by Webmaster

CriterionThe Criterion Collection has announced six titles for Blu-ray release in March. On March 12th, the studio will release Ministry of Fear (Fritz Lang, 1944) and The Blob (Irvin S. Yeaworth Jr., 1958). A week later, it will release Badlands (Terrence Malick, 1973) and The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (Michael Powell/Emeric Pressburger, 1943). On May 26th, it will release A Man Escaped (Robert Bresson, 1956) and Monsieur Verdoux (Charles Chaplin, 1947).

Technical specs and special features include:

Ministry of Fear

Suffused with dread and paranoia, this Fritz Lang adaptation of a novel by Graham Greene is a plunge into the eerie shadows of a world turned upside down by war. En route to London after being released from a mental institution, Stephen Neale (Ray Milland) stops at a seemingly innocent village fair, after which he finds himself caught in the web of a sinister underworld with possible Nazi connections. Lang was among the most illustrious of the European émigré filmmakers working in Hollywood during World War II, and Ministry of Fear is one of his finest American productions, an unpredictable thriller with style to spare.

Special Features:
  • New 2K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • New interview with Fritz Lang scholar Joe McElhaney
  • Trailer
  • PLUS: An essay by critic Glenn Kenny

The Blob

A cult classic of gooey greatness, The Blob follows the havoc wreaked on a small town by an outer-space monster with neither soul nor vertebrae, with Steve McQueen playing the rebel teen who tries to warn the residents about the jellylike invader. Strong performances and ingenious special effects help The Blob transcend the schlock sci-fi and youth delinquency genres from which it originates. Made outside of Hollywood by a maverick film distributor and a crew whose credits mostly comprised religious and educational shorts, The Blob helped launch the careers of McQueen and composer Burt Bacharach, whose bouncy title song is just one of this film's many unexpected pleasures.

Special Features:
  • New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Two audio commentaries: one by producer Jack H. Harris and film historian Bruce Eder and the other by director Irvin S. Yeaworth Jr. and actor Robert Fields
  • Trailer
  • Blobabilia!, a gallery of collector Wes Shank's rare trove of stills, posters, props (including the blob itself!), and other ephemera
  • PLUS: An essay by critic Kim Newman

Badlands

Badlands announced the arrival of a major talent: Terrence Malick. His impressionistic take on the notorious Charles Starkweather and Caril Ann Fugate killing spree of the late 1950s uses a serial-killer narrative as a springboard for an oblique teenage romance, lovingly and idiosyncratically enacted by Martin Sheen and Sissy Spacek. The film also introduced many of the elements that would earn Malick his passionate following: the enigmatic approach to narrative and character, the unusual use of voice-over, the juxtaposition of human violence with natural beauty, the poetic investigation of American dreams and nightmares. This debut has spawned countless imitations, but none have equaled its strange sublimity.

Special Features:
  • New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Making "Badlands," a new documentary featuring actors Martin Sheen and Sissy Spacek and production designer Jack Fisk
  • New interview with editor Billy Weber about director Terrence Malick's unique approach to editing
  • New interview with producer Edward Pressman
  • Trailer
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by filmmaker Michael Almereyda

The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp

Considered by many to be the finest British film ever made, The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp, by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, is a stirring masterpiece like no other. Roger Livesey dynamically embodies outmoded English militarism as the indelible General Clive Candy, who barely survives four decades of tumultuous British history (1902 to 1942) only to see the world change irrevocably before his eyes. Anton Walbrook and Deborah Kerr provide unforgettable support, he as a German enemy turned lifelong friend of Candy's and she as young women of three consecutive generations—a socially committed governess, a sweet-souled war nurse, and a modern-thinking army driver—who inspire him. Colonel Blimp is both moving and slyly satirical, an incomparable film about war, love, aging, and obsolescence shot in gorgeous Technicolor.

Special Features:
  • New 4K digital master from the 2012 Film Foundation restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Audio commentary featuring director Michael Powell and filmmaker Martin Scorsese
  • Video introduction by Scorsese
  • A Profile of "The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp," a twenty-four-minute documentary
  • Restoration demonstration, hosted by Scorsese
  • Interview with editor Thelma Schoonmaker Powell, Michael Powell's widow
  • Gallery featuring rare behind-the-scenes production stills
  • Gallery tracing the history of David Low's original Colonel Blimp cartoons
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Molly Haskell

A Man Escaped

With the simplest of concepts and sparest of techniques, Robert Bresson made one of the most suspenseful jailbreak films of all time in A Man Escaped. Based on the memoirs of an imprisoned French resistance leader, this unbelievably taut and methodical marvel follows the fictional Fontaine's single-minded pursuit of freedom, detailing the planning and carrying out of his escape with gripping precision. But Bresson's film is not merely process-minded—it's a work of intense spirituality and humanity.

Special Features:
  • New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Bresson: Without a Trace, a 1965 episode of the television program Cinéastes de notre temps in which the director gives his first on-camera interview
  • The Essence of Forms, a forty-five-minute documentary from 2010 in which some of Bresson's collaborators and admirers, including actor François Leterrier and director Bruno Dumont, share their thoughts about the director and his work
  • New visual essay with text by film scholars David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson
  • Trailer
  • New English subtitle translation
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film scholar Tony Pipolo

Monsieur Verdoux

Charlie Chaplin plays shockingly against type in his most controversial film, a brilliant and bleak black comedy about money, marriage, and murder. Chaplin is a twentieth-century Bluebeard, an enigmatic family man who goes to extreme lengths to support his wife and child, attempting to bump off a series of wealthy widows (including one played by the indefatigable Martha Raye, in a hilarious performance). This deeply philosophical and wildly entertaining film is a work of true sophistication, both for the moral questions it dares to ask and the way it deconstructs its megastar's lovable on-screen persona.

Special Features:
  • New 2K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Chaplin Today: "Monsieur Verdoux," a 2003 program on the film's production and release, featuring filmmaker Claude Chabrol and actor Norman Lloyd
  • Charlie Chaplin and the American Press, a new documentary featuring Chaplin specialist Kate Guyonvarch and author Charles Maland
  • New video essay featuring an audio interview with actress Marilyn Nash
  • Radio advertisements and trailers
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic Ignatiy Vishnevetsky and reprinted pieces by Chaplin and critic André Bazin



Source: Blu-ray.com | Permalink | United States [Country settings]

News comments (89 comments)


*PREACHER*
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Easily the best month of releases...by far. They will all eventually end up in my collection!

Dickieduvet
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Badlands.....Finally. YESSSSSS!!!

rockstarnati
 - Dec 17, 2012

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I must admit to never seeing any of these films before, but I want to blind buy all of these except Monsieur Verdoux.

mjcavinder
 - Dec 17, 2012

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More Chaplin!...kinda been wishing for The Circus...maybe next release?

C138
 - Dec 17, 2012

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BADLANDS!!!!!!! About time!

mport5150
 - Dec 17, 2012

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The Blob! Excellent!

lnh_boy
 - Dec 17, 2012

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New Blu Ray upgrades for The Blob and Colonel Blimp?? The DVDs have been in my Amazon wishlist, glad I waited!

vader4
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Beware of The Blob, it creeps and leaps and glides and slides across the floor...

Seriously awesome month I'll be getting Badlands and The Blob, also think I'll be netflixing a few of these soon as they look quite intriguing.

broganreynik
 - Dec 17, 2012

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HO-LY CRAP! Hands down the best month for Criterion releases since I've been a Blu-ray collector... since 2007.

aimforsilence
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Excited about more Chaplin! sad because no Life Aquatic... yet

Joshinator1989
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Badlands & The Blob for me in March!

Galley
 - Dec 17, 2012

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The Blob scared the crap out of me when I was a little kid. I used to think it lived in the basement, behind the furnace.

kcm1986
 - Dec 17, 2012

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it's about time criterion released badlands. the new colonel blimp i'm on the fence about because i own the previous criterion dvd. but if the new extras look promising in the upcoming reviews i might chuck my old copy. ministry of fear looks promising. Monsieur Verdoux i'd have to see on tcm first.

vanscottie
 - Dec 17, 2012

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So many great films, so many horrible covers!

ShellOilJunior
 - Dec 17, 2012

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A+ Month

MikeyHitchFan
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Some good titles but I want more Hitchcock!

bondfooll
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Great batch! Still hoping for "A Matter of Life and Death," though.

TheHighRoller
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Badlands!!! I'm so excited for this one!

madmojo
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Wow. Great month. Getting all of these eventually.

dannalexcon
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Thank you Criterion for adding Badlands to your collection, it truly belongs there. The icing on the cake is the 4k digital restoration, the other Mallick titles in the collection all came with reference grade video, so a qualified guess is that Badlands should look nothing short of spectacular!

SammyJankis
 - Dec 17, 2012

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This month is just godly.

GWPabst
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Monsieur Verdoux! What a splendid choice!

MTRodaba2468
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Fantastic slate.

Blu Warrior
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Badlands for me!

Puonti
 - Dec 17, 2012

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The Blob, awesome!

j_adson
 - Dec 17, 2012

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im gon have a chubby the whole month of march

reelgeek
 - Dec 17, 2012

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The Blob for me....

Yojimbo
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Oh God...I'm going broke in March.

Atreyu
 - Dec 17, 2012

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My favorite of the later Chaplins and Steven McQueen in The Blob, yes!!!!!

starman15317
 - Dec 17, 2012

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The Blob and Badlands!! Yes! I haven't seen it yet, but I'm interested in Monsieur Verdoux.

HuggyBear73
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Wow! I might have to get all of these.

movielover101
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Yay! The Blob!

nitin
 - Dec 17, 2012

Show comment

Armorales102
 - Dec 17, 2012

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fantastic!!! im in for Badlands, The Blob, and Monsieur Verdoux

jw007
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Though Badlands is the real gem here, A Man Escaped is truly the gold nugget. Director Robert Bresson has finally arrived on Blu-ray! This is THE BEST month I've seen ever for Criterion releases. This IS the mothership of all months! Malick, Bresson, Chaplin, Lang and a 50's sci-fi cult classic (The Blob)!

TwntyOneTwlv
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Absolutely incredible month. I'll definitely be getting A Man Escaped, and will probably blind buy Badlands and The Blob.

nazdar
 - Dec 17, 2012

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beware of the blob ...

deepbreathsanddeath
 - Dec 17, 2012

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I literally started to shake and sweat a little. This along with Scream Factory's lineup for next year are the best announcements to date in my opinion! They'll ALL be mine and I'll be broke but that's okay.

Scholer
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Badlands Finalllyyyyy! I'll sleep in peace for some time now. Now Apu Trilogy and Derau Uzala.

Wizard-of-Wars
 - Dec 17, 2012

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More Chaplin???? YES!!!!!! Can't wait!! Wait, what's that? More Lang??? Oh Heck yeah!!!
Come on March!!!

wllm995
 - Dec 17, 2012

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A very nice list from Criterion - will be buying at least a few; Lang, Bresson, Chaplin!

PBateman87
 - Dec 17, 2012

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I'm in for The Blob and The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp!

bingtau
 - Dec 17, 2012

Show comment

Grethiwha
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Ministry of Fear is on my to watch list - it's airing on TCM 4am New Years Eve morning. I'll see if it's worth owning to me, keeping in mind the lower price-point on that one; I love Lang.

DVD Phreak
 - Dec 17, 2012

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bboisvert
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Holy cow... I usually want 1 or 2 criterions in their announcements. I'm in for ALL of these. Don't think that has ever happened.

BluPix
 - Dec 17, 2012

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Looks like as if March is going to be one strong month, at least as far as Criterion goes.

I'm especially interested in Terrence Malick's Badlands, which will be another big upgrade from my existing DVD.

Even though I've seen only Badlands thus far, I'm really in for all six titles, as most of them are by directors whose other work I've loved (Chaplin, Lang, Powell & Pressburger) and one is classic I've long wanted to see in its entirety (The Blob). The plot of The Man Escaped looks very interesting, as well.

BTW, I just love that cover for Colonel Blimp.

monque
 - Dec 17, 2012

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I am going to go broke in March.

BluPat
 - Dec 18, 2012

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Great titles!

jimmybearlondon
 - Dec 18, 2012

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Day one for Badlands, been waiting for this one to be announced for months and am now a very happy bunny

retask
 - Dec 18, 2012

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Best.... month.... ever...

movieman1979
 - Dec 18, 2012

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In for The Blob, Badlands and another addition to the ever growing Chaplin library!! Any chance 'The Kid' could be next?? :-)

Sanjuro
 - Dec 18, 2012

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This may honestly be the best month they've had in YEARS. Chaplin's best and most undervalued film, possibly the greatest British film of all time (though it's only my second fav Archers after Red Shoes), one of the best first films ever, a great Lang thriller, one of the best French films of all time, and an awesome sci-fi B-movie upgrade. These are all day one-rs for me.

JHas
 - Dec 18, 2012

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Man alive! My wallet is going to be hurting after the month of March!

repete66211
 - Dec 18, 2012

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Brazil and now Badlands. That takes care of about 90% of the whiners.

repete66211
 - Dec 18, 2012

Show comment

hotrods4ben
 - Dec 18, 2012

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These guys have been on a roll lately. Even more than usual!

I'm surpised and not surprised they picked up Badlands. They shouldn't have to license anything from Warner Bros, but... they love Malick. I love the cover though.

And DVD Phreak, The CC can get away with 5 star material with just 2k scans.

mhurne
 - Dec 18, 2012

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I've heard some say that 2012 was a disappointment for Criterion releases. Three months in, 2013 is looking like a banner year.

Sky_Captain85
 - Dec 18, 2012

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That cover art for Badlands is great.

Boob-Ray
 - Dec 18, 2012

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Holy mackerel. I think I might be getting all of these!!!!!

ilovenola2
 - Dec 18, 2012

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I'll stick with Chaplin and Powell/Pressburger.

cad1981
 - Dec 18, 2012

Show comment

Gardenofstone10
 - Dec 18, 2012

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About time The Blob gets proper treatment!!!!!

PBateman87
 - Dec 18, 2012

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The Colonel Blimp cover art is way cool.

JHas
 - Dec 18, 2012

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I love the person thumbing everyone down just because they hate Badlands.

nichr85
 - Dec 18, 2012

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"Everyone's enthusiasm is a little much though....The Blob?....Monsieur Verdoux? (second-rate Chaplin)"

Why don't you watch "A Man Escaped" before you spount your nonsense!!

blu beaver
 - Dec 18, 2012

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Yojimbo
 - Dec 18, 2012

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I'm with you on that one blu beaver, though Kurosawa and Bergman both have the most releases on blu so far. If I remember correctly, we only got Rashomon this year and High and Low last year, so I hope that we can expect more than one this year.

DVD Phreak
 - Dec 18, 2012

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"And DVD Phreak, The CC can get away with 5 star material with just 2k scans. "

I'm not against them using 2K; I'm just asking if it's even *worth mentioning*, since 2K is the *bare minimum* of a HD transfer. Other than 2K, what else could they use (if it weren't going to be 4K)? Nothing, right? So why mention it? There's really no point.

Stubblecat
 - Dec 18, 2012

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Wow... Lotsa downvotes in this thread. You people can so so hilariously cruel.

Seriously, as someone who hit 40 this year and used to plunk down hundreds of dollars on Criterion laserdiscs back in the 90s, it warms my heart to see so many people so enthusiastic about obscure masterpieces on BD. I buy very few nowadays, but it's good to know that there are others keeping up the demand.

ChuckNorrisHero
 - Dec 18, 2012

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BADLANDS!!!!!!!!!!! An excellent month for criterion

slm
 - Dec 18, 2012

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The Blob!!! Loved this when I was little - so scary!

HelmutNewton
 - Dec 18, 2012

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Badlands! Not a fan of the cover art though...

Icemouth
 - Dec 18, 2012

Show comment

Lino11
 - Dec 18, 2012

Show comment

bboisvert
 - Dec 19, 2012

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"Everyone's enthusiasm is a little much though....The Blob?....Monsieur Verdoux? (second-rate Chaplin). "

*shrug* I own both on DVD, I've watched them often enough... and I'll gladly upgrade. I agree that they aren't exactly "creme de le creme"... but I enjoy them and (IMO) they're better than 99% of what gets released. So I'll choose to show some enthusiasm.

(Apparently others disagree, since my simple comment stating the fact that this is the first month I'm buying everything Criterion releases got voted down to the point of being blocked... what a stupid fuckin system....)

BigNickUK
 - Dec 19, 2012

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glad you guys are getting the blimp restoration...its jaw dropping

Alaydown
 - Dec 19, 2012

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Criterion movies are good but always way overpriced.

Alan2112
 - Dec 19, 2012

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What? No Love for Fritz Lang's "Ministry of Fear"? No one mentions that one; I am buying that...even after getting on Region 2 DVD a while back. The BLOB, Badlands, and Monsieur Verdoux are also on the Must Have List. COL Blimp is a maybe....

PBateman87
 - Dec 19, 2012

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@ Alaydown

At full price, absolutely. But most are definitely worth it at $19.99 or less during 50% off sales.

Yojimbo
 - Dec 19, 2012

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"Omg no kurosawa or anderson this is garbage?!?! Sigh. I guess having the most single director releases on blu-ray isn't enough for you fools? Sorry, let the rest of us enjoy good releases, thanks."

Don't get me wrong, Icemouth, even though I love me some Kurosawa, this is a fantastic month. See my first comment above as I will be buying all of these.

Pilgermann
 - Dec 19, 2012

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One thing about Criterion prices; the MSRP isn't really much higher than any other studio, it's just that retailers hardly discount them except for special sales like B&N. I wouldn't pay full retail but their releases are usually such high quality that they're worth a few extra bucks.

Minimejer05
 - Dec 19, 2012

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Finally, BADLANDS

blu beaver
 - Dec 19, 2012

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why does it qualify people as fools that they want the kurosawa catalog in hi def? it's not even like any of us who said that even claimed this was a bad month... in fact, i think it's one of the best months in ages. i just wish they'd quench our thirst with more than one single kurosawa title per year. i know they have loads of other cinematic responsibilities and i enjoy most every one! - however - i just wish they'd hurry up, because at this rate it will take literally 10+ years to get kurosawa's golden era out in hi def and i worry that the format will die before this. ya follow?

popeflick
 - Dec 19, 2012

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Very few mentions so I will: A Man Escaped is THE underrated film here. It's probably on every serious French Film syllabus at a major level. Do not miss it!

curtistalls
 - Dec 20, 2012

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The Blob, Badlands, and Ministry of Fear are all definitely buys.

ufso
 - Dec 20, 2012

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Having seen "Robinson Crusoe on Mars" in SD projected onto a 110" thru a Epson 9500, the print was beautiful. Was it worth an upgrade to BD, on my setup...barely. That's how good the DVD was.

The DVD of "The Blob" is great too, so, will I double dip...that's going to be a tough one. Going to have to really read the reviews to see how much of a so-called "digital restoration" they did, if any.

Now if they would release their "Monsters and Madmen" in their correct aspect ratios, not all 1.33:1 but 1.66:1 and 1.85:1, then you have a sale!!!

Simonbergeron
 - Dec 20, 2012

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I have to say, the features on Monsieur Verdoux are pretty slim, but Criterion definitely gave me proof enough that they wish to continue their relationship with Chaplin's cinema... nevertheless, I can't wait to see what they do with City Lights when they get to it...

Badlands is FINALLY getting released? Damn, gotta buy it too...

All in all, I may have to part with loads of money... Criterion, you KNOW how to keep me interested. As long as you DO intend on doing City Lights justice, I'm fine

Philly Q
 - Dec 22, 2012

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What a fantastic month! Definitely in for at least four of these.


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