NICHOLAS RAY’S BIGGER THAN LIFE: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

As far as the narrative goes, drop the “Reefer” and call this film “Cortisone Madness”…

Posted on April 21, 2010 in Reviews by

MAKE WAY FOR TOMORROW: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

The early Hollywood studio system loved to sensationalize. A property rooted in character would turn melodramatic for the populace, making true drama a rarity for the time. Leo McCarey’s “Make Way for Tomorrow” (1937) is this kind of rarity…

Posted on February 24, 2010 in Reviews by

THE GOLDEN AGE OF TELEVISION (1953-58): THE CRITERION COLLECTION SET

The high-pressure environment of live television was described as “Summer Stock in an iron lung.” Perhaps the programs’ invigorating style required such energy.

Posted on November 24, 2009 in Reviews by

DAVID MAMET’S HOMICIDE (CRITERION COLLECTION) (DVD)

As Mamet writes, so he directs – his shots get to the point, usually one we don’t forget.

Posted on September 15, 2009 in Reviews by

BERGMAN ISLAND: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

Regardless of its flaws, “Bergman Island” is a comprehensive look into one of the most revered filmmakers of all time.

Posted on August 1, 2009 in Reviews by

ROMAN POLANSKI’S REPULSION: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

The director deploys suspense techniques with surrealistic touches – both of which would seem dated today were they not so sharply weaved together.

Posted on July 28, 2009 in Reviews by

THE SEVENTH SEAL: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

Bergman’s masterwork contains plenty of humor, despite its reputation as a dour film, and is eventually life affirming.

Posted on June 28, 2009 in Reviews by

JOHN HUSTON’S WISE BLOOD: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

Huston stays true to the novel’s events but draws from the story all the black comedy he can find. We are in strange territory.

Posted on June 25, 2009 in Reviews by

EMPIRE OF PASSION: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

“Empire of Passion” is a cautionary tale about what happens when you fall in love with your rapist.

Posted on May 19, 2009 in Reviews by

TRAFIC: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

Barring a few brilliant and surprising sight gags, “Trafic” is a long slog through parched and flat terrain.

Posted on March 31, 2009 in Reviews by

REVANCHE

2008 AFI FEST FEATURE! Filmmaker Gotz Spielmann smoothly transports us from the seedy Vienna red light district to a tranquil farmhouse setting in this tense, and even a little naughty, revenge tale…

Posted on November 3, 2008 in Reviews by

THE LAST FAIR DEAL (DVD)

I’m pretty sure that the character doing the voice-over throughout this movie has more lines off-screen than he does on. This is not a good thing…

Posted on October 10, 2008 in Reviews by

VAMPYR: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

With the shifts and glides of grayish-white background, “Vampyr” plays like a musty old photo that wakes to jolting life…

Posted on August 26, 2008 in Reviews by

HIGH AND LOW: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

It’s easy to forget sometimes that Akira Kurosawa was a great filmmaker, not just someone who made great samurai movies. “High and Low” demonstrates his range of ability as he tackles a police procedural set in early 1960s Japan…

Posted on July 29, 2008 in Reviews by

THE ICE STORM: CRITERION COLLECTION (DVD)

I’m sure I’m mostly speaking to fans of the film who want to know what Criterion has in store for them. Rest assured, it’s another worthy release…

Posted on March 31, 2008 in Reviews by

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