criterion blu ray

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Criterion announced it will release the entire Springfield Film Festival (March 5, 1995, “A Star Is Burns”) on Blu-ray early next year. Titles include:

  • Barney Gumble’s “Pukahontas”
  • Señor Spielbergo’s “A Burns For All Seasons”
  • Moe Szyslak’s musical joint, “Moe Better Booze”
  • Apu Nahasapeemapetilon’s found footage film, “Bright Lights, Beef Jerky”
  • Bart Simpson’s obesity documentary, “The Eternal Struggle”
  • Roger Myers, Jr. presents Itchy & Scratchy in “Four Funerals and a Wedding”
  • Ned Flanders’ biblical film, “The Life of the Moses”
  • Hans Moleman Productions Presents “Man Getting Hit By Football”
  • Oscar-winning reboot: George C. Scott’s “Man Getting Hit By Football”

Dipped my toe into Criterion’s Red Shoes Bluray extras yesterday.  Well, OK I spent the whole bloody day exploring that disc. 

  • Slide show of Heinz Heckroth’s 200 production paintings, with the option to have Jeremy Irons reading the original Hans Christian Anderson legend of The Red Shoes in the background.  Another option is to watch the slide show in comparison with shots from the film.  Yeah, I watched it with and without Jeremy.  The Heckroth paintings are amazing. Some are watercolor, others are oil, all are fluid abstract expressionism.  Many of the paintings were recreated absolutely faithfully for the film.
  • You can watch the film with Jeremy Irons reading the novelization of The Red Shoes in the background.  This is great because it gives you quite a bit of supplementary material on the characters, and also shows that a lot of the interpretation of Boris Lermontov was down to Anton Walbrook.  There is an extra scene where Boris meets Lady Nestor after Vicki and Julian are married and he grills her for information. 
  • Commentary track by Ian Christy.  I was giddy with happiness that Christy mentions Oh, Rosalinda in a positive light at one point, praising the art direction and Anton’s performance.  It gives me hope that someday we may see a restored Ros.  Christy intersperses the usual film critic stuff with audio interviews with Jack Cardiff, Brian Easedale, Moira Shearer, Marius Goring and of course, Marty Scorsese.  Shearer’s interview is a revelation.  She is so spikey and full of slightly catty stories about everyone except Leonine Massine, who she rightfully worshipped.  She does a spot-on impersonation of Anton Walbrook that beats anything Jeremy Irons could do reading the novelization.  She says some slightly mean things about Anton, but I forgive her because she’s just a spit-fire and it’s fun to hear anything at all about Anton.  Marius’ interview is short, clearly due to his failing health which you can hear in his voice.  Oh, BB, you might have been miscast, but this was just heartbreaking.  Scorsese actually manages to be not annoying sometimes, especially talking about how he borrowed from the dance of The Red Shoes sequence in Raging Bull.   
  • Martin Scorsese’s Memorabilia Collection: At this point Scorsese’s involvement with all things British Film has become such a joke that my husband and I just burst out laughing every time he’s in a documentary.  The Collection reveals the full depth of Marty’s obsession and some of the items are TDF: like a pair of the actual Red Shoes signed by the cast. 
  • Collection of posters and publicity stills.  I particularly liked his collection of Lobby Cards which include the Mexican series that makes “Las Zapatillas Rojas” seem like a romantic comedy. 
  • 25 minute documentary on the Making of The Red Shoes.  I’ve seen this thing before I think.  I actually got more on the technical significance of the film from the pieces that Ian Christy added to the commentary track. 
  • Video interview with Michael Powell’s widow, Thelma Schoonmaker Powell.  Schoonmaker works for martin Scorsese as an editor so there is a bit too much Marty this and that in it.  But she has some interesting insights on her late husband and on the craft of editing.  The interviewer is so incompetent that I checked the Bluray case to see if it wasn’t me. 
  • Trailer.  It’s always fun to see how classic films were marketed and if nothing else you should watch the trailer just to see how shockingly deteriorated the film must have been before the restoration.

Okay, so Hunk likes cooking, Lance likes video games, and Keith likes being emo, so what if, besides loving video games, Pidge is like, a disgustingly nerdy film geek?

Like, “I own two dozen Criterion blu-rays and can name the editor for every Marvel movie” kind of geek. Like, she’s always the one suggesting movies, and the movies range from super cheesy stuff like Street Fighter or Total Recall, to really artsy stuff like  or Eraserhead, to blockbusters like Star Wars or the Marvel movies.

Give me film nerd Pidge.

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My Criterion summer sale haul, though I plan to go back next week to get Stalker as well.

For a couple of bonuses, my Criterion Blu-Ray collection and a pic of His Girl Friday’s awesome booklet as well.

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Amazon is having a Wes Anderson collection sale!