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THE CRITERION COLLECTION Appreciation Thread
#1
   

Before streaming, before blu-ray, before DVD...   The Criterion Collection started it all.  Director's commentaries.  Making-of features.  Storyboards.  Insights into the cinema process that were only available at the time to film school students and who ever was lucky enough to be able to visit or work on a film set.

I still have a selection of Criterion's LaserDiscs, a ton of their DVDs, a growing pile of their blu-rays and have even held in my hands two Criterion VHS tapes.  If I could work for them, I would.  If I were a celebrity, I'd be their pitch man.  Despite the occasional technical gaff (ahem, color grading), they remain my single favorite film release label and set the standards that companies like Arrow and Shout Factory continue achieving greatness in, to this day.

Let's talk Criterion.  

I'm gearing up for their next sale. (July 2021?)  I think I'll be grabbing...
THE BREAKFAST CLUB (finally)
LOCAL HERO
and FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH

I would've been all over the WONG KAR WAI box set but don't care for the over-greening of the images I saw in screencaps.
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#2
I'm debating on whether or not to get MEMORIES OF MURDER

I already have the nice korean bluray that I imported... and the new transfer on the Criterion disc feels so muted...
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#3
Really delighted that they're adding Pennebaker's COMPANY Cast Album doc to the collection (complete with a newly-recorded Sondheim commentary!) - and that they're also including the Documentary Now! spoof of that doc CO-OP on the set. Definitely gonna pick that one up when it's out.
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#4
I love watching their Closet Picks videos too.  

I think my very 1st Criterion laserdisc was the $50 TAXI DRIVER CLV platter that I bought from Dave's Video in LA way back in the day.  I'm sure I still have it in a box in my garage somewhere.  I remember playing that sucker constantly when I was in college.  But the CAV edition of THE KILLER was probably my greatest LD purchase.  Best $125 I ever spent.

The WKW set and MEMORIES OF MURDER are on my list for the next 50% Off Sale.  Apparently the transfers & touch-ups are director approved but yeah I'm not too crazy about the changes.
The most important thing in life is broads. Broads!
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#5
I always wanted so many of the Criterion LaserDiscs. GHOSTBUSTERS, BLADE RUNNER, CLOSE ENCOUNTERS, SPINAL TAP, THE KILLER, HARD BOILED, TAXI DRIVER, THE ADVENTURES OF BARON MUNCHAUSEN, HALLOWEEN, AKIRA... Finally grabbed them all in the last ten or twelve years. Even though I'm downsizing, I'm keeping them.
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#6
(05-18-2021, 02:08 PM)Nooj Wrote: I'm debating on whether or not to get MEMORIES OF MURDER

I already have the nice korean bluray that I imported... and the new transfer on the Criterion disc feels so muted...

Ah that's too bad. I'm almost certainly buying that when I get the chance, since I don't have a physical copy, but that's unfortunate.

The last Criterion I bought was THE IRISHMAN, which looks tremendous...Before that, it was the Bruce Lee set last spring, which is excellent. I can't splurge on them like I used to (I pretty much have to save up for the big sales once or twice a year), but they're still the benchmark.

The Criterion Channel is pretty damn amazing, too.
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#7
here's a comparison of the two transfers (Korean bluray vs Criterion bluray)

https://caps-a-holic.com/c.php?go=1&a=0&...4&i=15&l=0

honestly, the Korean is probably too bright and hot.... but the Criterion feels so dim
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#8
I love MEMORIES OF MURDER. I have the Korean imported 2-DVD set though, as I hadn't made the blu switch at that point yet.

Just borrowed the Criterion blu of Kubrick's PATHS OF GLORY from the local library. It's the only Kubrick I haven't seen!
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#9
I think I still have that 2disc dvd somewhere
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#10
(05-19-2021, 04:52 PM)engineer Wrote: Just borrowed the Criterion blu of Kubrick's PATHS OF GLORY from the local library.  It's the only Kubrick I haven't seen!

Oh man! It's outstanding and the transfer is great.

EDIT: Wow nooj, those MEMORIES OF MURDER comparisons are downright jarring. I agree that the Korean disc is maybe a skosh blown out, but the Criterion goes way, WAYYYYY too far in the other direction.
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#11
(05-19-2021, 04:52 PM)engineer Wrote: I love MEMORIES OF MURDER.  I have the Korean imported 2-DVD set though, as I hadn't made the blu switch at that point yet.

I imported the LE DVD set as soon as it came out.  Brought it w/ me to the Hollywood Arclight / AFI screening of THE HOST back in 2006 and got Bong and Scott Wilson's autographs on it as a proper fanboy.


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The most important thing in life is broads. Broads!
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#12
was there anything particularly EXTRA on that set?

I only had the regular 2 disc release
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#13
Oh hell yea

   

On top of the bitchin' heavy duty outer case, you get 4 postcards and a storyboard book w/ Bong's original artwork and scribbles.  Plus a film cell from TALE TWO SISTERS (huh?).

I also cherish this R2 Japanese LE DVD set of THE HOST (that also came w/ the long since OOP screenplay / storyboard book & a special Making Of book)

   
The most important thing in life is broads. Broads!
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#14
(05-18-2021, 02:03 PM)engineer Wrote: I'm gearing up for their next sale. (July 2021?)  I think I'll be grabbing...
THE BREAKFAST CLUB (finally)
LOCAL HERO
and FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH

I own two of these - BREAKFAST CLUB and LOCAL HERO - and they're great sets.

I kinda regret getting TBC, but not due to the quality of the disc and extras. It's just I don't know that I'll actually watch it again.

LOCAL HERO is definitely something I'll revisit, though.

FAST TIMES is a great movie but again, not something I see myself revisiting again. I watched it a few years ago - it holds up! - but, like TBC, I've seen it so much I don't know that I ever need to see it again.
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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#15
After the conversation that we had on the Discord, I picked up the Qatis trilogy on bluray. Really excited to check that out.

Also I'm waiting for the next sale to finally pick up the Wong Kar Wai collection. This was an exact exchange i had with a B&N Employee.

Me: Are these all teh criterions you have.
Employee: *slightly disinterested* Yes, sir. Is there anything specific you want?
Me. Do you have the Wong Kar Wai set?
Employee: *eyes suddenly light up* Oh.... Well, follow me sir.
*we go to the back of the store*
Employee: *uses his key to open a security box* We don't keep this out there since it's more of our "high-valued" product
Me: Well...I am a classy bitch.
"God moves in mysterious ways," they said. Maybe he is on your side, the way it all worked out. Remembering other Christmases, wishing for something, something important, something special. And this is it, baby boy Frankie Bono. You're alone now. All alone. The scream is dead. There's no pain. You're home again, back in the cold, black silence
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#16
(05-20-2021, 10:14 AM)ska oreo Wrote: After the conversation that we had on the Discord, I picked up the Qatis trilogy on bluray.  Really excited to check that out.

Next sale, I'm grabbing that too.  That conversation on Discord sold me on the set as well.
'make sure you pay attention to the awesome suits' - Nooj on UNDERWATER
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#17
Oh, I love the QATSI box.  Get yourselves those BARAKA and SAMSARA discs too, for more excellence.

LOCAL HERO is one I find myself thinking about a lot.  If I could live in that town, I would too.
I borrowed that and TBC from my library for revisiting. At my current age I find the Janitor to be my favorite character.

I also love the Criterion Closet videos.  I'd love to make a DIE HARD parody in which that closet were the Nakatomi safe.

Sometimes I think about getting the Kieslowski THREE COLORS box, but I still have my Miramax DVD box set and so far it's holding me over.
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#18
Johnnie To's THROW DOWN coming from Criterion in Sep.

Not too many new special features but I'll probably pick it up during a future 50% Off sale.  I only watched the DVD once but remember liking it a good to great deal.

Hopefully this stirs some interest in Criterion doing THE MISSION.  I would gladly pay full price for that.
The most important thing in life is broads. Broads!
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#19
I nearly traded off my HK DVD or THROWDOWN just a week ago but decided I liked it too much.
Johnnie To on Criterion is great news! I'd also love THE MISSION, EXILED and maybe ELECTION 1 and 2.
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#20
Also coming to Criterion - MONA LISA

[Image: OWq0dobv9iN2ecNYtSlCkuhay2n7k4_large.jpg]
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#21
what a gorgeous cover
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#22
I remember that one being really good.
'make sure you pay attention to the awesome suits' - Nooj on UNDERWATER
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#23
Some great neo-noir films coming in July to the Criterion Channel:

Cotton Comes to Harlem (1970), Across 110th Street (1972), The Long Goodbye (1973), Chinatown (1974)**, Night Moves (1975), Farewell, My Lovely (1975), The Killing of a Chinese Bookie (1976), The American Friend (1977), The Big Sleep (1978), Eyes of Laura Mars (1978), The Onion Field (1979), Body Heat (1981), Thief (1981)*, Blow Out (1981), Cutter’s Way (1981), Blood Simple (1984), Body Double (1984), The Hit (1984), Trouble in Mind (1985), Manhunter (1986), Mona Lisa (1986), The Bedroom Window (1987), Homicide (1991), Swoon (1992), Suture (1993), The Last Seduction (1994), Brick (2005)**
'make sure you pay attention to the awesome suits' - Nooj on UNDERWATER
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#24
MONA LISA is in my Top 5 80's.

"Got concrete rhymes, been rappin' for ten years and

Even when I'm braggin', I'm bein' sincere"



"Teenage angst has paid off well/ Now I'm bored and old"


"Drunk as hell, but no throwin' up

Half way home and my pager still blowin' up"


"I'm tired of living all alone
yeah, nobody ever calls me on the phone
But when things start getting bad
I just play my music louder"





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#25
MONA LISA is great. I first saw it back to back with THE LONG GOOD FRIDAY, both on the previous Criterion Collection DVDs.

Just reserved my first three for the B&N sale starting this weekend.
THE BREAKFAST CLUB, LOCAL HERO and THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS.
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#26
Watched AS TEARS GO BY from the WKW set last night.  Seeing the Janus Films logo in front of this serviceable 80s Andy Lau heartthrob propaganda video was a trip.  

This is probably the 1st time I watched the original HK/Cantonese soundtrack version.  I think I liked the Mandarin cut better for the soundtrack (esp. during the phone booth scene), much better ending and a heartfelt Jackie Cheung throwaway moment.  That Cantopop version of Berlin's Take My Breath Away was a new form of douche-chill torture.
The most important thing in life is broads. Broads!
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#27
Got the QATSI trilogy the other day and finally saw KOYAANISQATSI.

that was excellent. Rarely do you watch something that hypnotic.
'make sure you pay attention to the awesome suits' - Nooj on UNDERWATER
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#28
(06-28-2021, 04:04 PM)Judas Booth Wrote: Some great neo-noir films coming in July to the Criterion Channel:

Cotton Comes to Harlem (1970), Across 110th Street (1972), The Long Goodbye (1973), Chinatown (1974)**, Night Moves (1975), Farewell, My Lovely (1975), The Killing of a Chinese Bookie (1976), The American Friend (1977), The Big Sleep (1978), Eyes of Laura Mars (1978), The Onion Field (1979), Body Heat (1981), Thief (1981)*, Blow Out (1981), Cutter’s Way (1981), Blood Simple (1984), Body Double (1984), The Hit (1984), Trouble in Mind (1985), Manhunter (1986), Mona Lisa (1986), The Bedroom Window (1987), Homicide (1991), Swoon (1992), Suture (1993), The Last Seduction (1994), Brick (2005)**

Well, EYES OF LAURA MARS was a dog, but I really enjoyed FAREWELL, MY LOVELY with Mitchum as a great Marlowe.  Looking forward to getting into his version of THE BIG SLEEP.
"Lets pour some sugar on Dallas!!  Seriose inquarys only!"
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#29
Holy shit - this was unexpected.

Once Upon a Time in China box set

Though I would've gladly traded 4 & 5 for Sammo's ONCE UPON A TIME IN CHINA & AMERICA

Also - MENACE II SOCIETY
The most important thing in life is broads. Broads!
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#30
Woo Hoo, OUATICAA is actually included as a bonus:

SIX-BLU-RAY SPECIAL EDITION COLLECTOR’S SET FEATURES:

- 4K digital restorations of Once Upon a Time in China and Once Upon a Time in China II and III, and new 2K digital restorations of Once Upon a Time in China IV and V, all presented with their original Cantonese theatrical-release sound mixes in uncompressed monaural or stereo
- Alternate stereo Cantonese soundtracks for Once Upon a Time in China and Once Upon a Time in China II, featuring the original theatrical sound effects, and monaural Cantonese soundtrack for Once Upon a Time in China III
- Once Upon a Time in China and America (1997) in a 2K digital transfer, featuring 5.1 surround DTS-HD Master Audio and monaural Cantonese soundtracks, along with a stereo Mandarin track with the voice of actor Jet Li
- New interviews with director Tsui Hark, Film Workshop cofounder Nansun Shi, editor Marco Mak, and critic Tony Rayns
- Excerpts from audio interviews with Li conducted in 2004 and ’05
- Deleted scenes from Once Upon a Time in China III
- Documentary from 2004 about the real-life martial-arts hero Wong Fei-hung
- From Spikes to Spindles, a 1976 documentary about New York City’s Chinatown featuring uncredited work by Tsui
- Excerpts from a 2019 master class given by martial-arts choreographer Yuen Wo-ping
- Archival interviews featuring Tsui and actors John Wakefield, Donnie Yen, and Yen Shi-kwan
- Behind-the-scenes footage for Once Upon a Time in China and Once Upon a Time in China and America
- Making-of program from 1997 on Once Upon a Time in China and America
- Trailers
- New English subtitle translations
- PLUS: An essay on the films by critic Maggie Lee and an essay on the cinematic depictions of Wong by novelist Grady Hendrix
The most important thing in life is broads. Broads!
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