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September Criterion Releases Include Lynch's 'Eraserhead,' Polanski's 'Macbeth' & Horror Classic 'The Innocents'

Photo of Oliver Lyttelton By Oliver Lyttelton | The Playlist June 16, 2014 at 6:14PM

It's the middle of the month, and we know what that means. Well, for us, it means realizing we have $70 to last us until payday, but for the more frugal cinephiles among you, it means that it's time for Criterion to announce what they've got coming up three months down the line. And once more, there are some treats in store.
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Criterion/September 2014

It's the middle of the month, and we know what that means. Well, for us, it means realizing we have $70 to last us until payday, but for the more frugal cinephiles among you, it means that it's time for Criterion to announce what they've got coming up three months down the line. And once more, there are some treats in store.

Kicking things off, and certainly the headliner, is David Lynch's seminal 1977 first feature "Eraserhead," the first of the director's features to make the collection. The film will be displayed on a new 4K digital restoration, along with new restorations of six Lynch shorts (1966's "Six Figures Getting Sick," 1968's 'The Alphabet," 1970's "The Grandmother," 1974's "The Amputee Part 1 and 2," and 1996's "Premonitions Following An Evil Deed," plus interviews and a 2001 documentary by Lynch called "Eraserhead Stories." So yeah, pretty much a must buy when it lands on September 16th. 

Unlike Lynch, Polanski's a regular in the Collection, but his 1971 take on "Macbeth" will be hitting just in time for the upcoming Michael Fassbender/Marion Cotillard take on Shakespeare's classic. Again with a 4k restoration, it'll be accompanied by both a 1971 documentary, and a brand new one about the making of the film, plus an essay by critic Terence Rafferty. That hits 23rd of September.

The same day also brings Jack Clayton's superb ghost story "The Innocents." A 1961 version of Henry James' "The Turn Of The Screw," a favorite of Martin Scorsese, gets the 4k restoration, an audio commentary from historian Christopher Frayling, a new interview about the cinematography by Freddie Francis, and archive interviews with other crew members. The film's not as well known in the States as in the UK, but it's absolutely brilliant, and as definitive as the earlier two pictures.

Finally, the month closes out with Serge Bourgignon's "Sundays And Cybele." Not necessarily as sexy as some of the others, the film, which won the foreign-language Oscar in 1962, is somewhat overshadowed now, but could get a boost in its reputation. The release gets a 2k restoration, new interviews with the director and actress Patricia Gozzi, and "La sourire," the 1960 short that won Bourguignon the Palme D'Or. That lands on September 30th, the same day that Fassbinder's "Ali: Fear Eats The Soul" gets an overdue upgrade to blu.

Speaking of, it was announced last week that Criterion will no longer be doing dual-format releases — supposedly, a surprisingly small number of customers have made the upgrade to Blu, and the experiment didn't pay off. What do you think about the decision? Are you pleased, or unhappy? Talk it out below in the comments.

This article is related to: The Criterion Collection, David Lynch, Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Roman Polanski


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