The Playlist

The Essentials: Krzysztof Kieslowski

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • March 13, 2013 5:34 PM
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  • 9 Comments
It’s perhaps comical to describe a filmmaker revered in some circles as underrated when they’ve been nominated for some of the biggest prizes in cinema -- the Palme d'Or, Venice’s Golden Lion, the Academy Awards, Berlin’s Golden Bear. But perhaps because Polish filmmaker Krzysztof Kieslowski never really took many of these major prizes home, and never gained global status until later in his career, we find that the filmmaker is not as revered as we’d like (though he tied for a Golden Lion in 1993). Perhaps this observation is very relative. Perhaps it’s because he didn’t enter the Criterion canon until 2006, perhaps because his career ended too abruptly just as it was truly ascending, or perhaps simply because he’s one of our most adored filmmakers: we routinely never give up an opportunity to celebrate Kieslowski’s work when we can.

The Essentials: 5 Elia Kazan Films You May Not Know

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • February 22, 2013 2:02 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Elia Kazan famously once said, “The writer, when he is also an artist, is someone who admits what others don't dare reveal.” And one could easily argue Kazan’s raison d’être was to go to emotional and psychological places few men dared to tread. While Kazan’s films were often marked by social issues to the outsider, the filmmaker was much more drawn to the pathos of the human condition, the painfully vulnerable, complicated and emotional naked places of the human psyche. And he loved and nurtured the vanity-free actors who were willing and able to facilitate such ends and emotional complex truths. Marlon Brando, the ne plus ultra of tough but overly sensitive and vulnerable American male, was Kazan’s muse, and the filmmaker loved how he could arouse, cajole and release extraordinary feelings in the actor.

'On The Waterfront' On Criterion: Frank Sinatra Was Originally Cast In The Lead, Martin Scorsese's Thoughts & Aspect Ratio Talk

  • By Edward Davis
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  • February 21, 2013 6:42 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Elia Kazan's unimpeachable 1954 classic picture "On The Waterfront" is out on Blu-Ray/DVD via the Criterion Collection this week in a beautifully packaged two disc edition. While he was well on his way to becoming known as one of the world's greatest actors -- he was nominated for Best Actor three years in a row between 1952 and 1954 -- Marlon Brando's first Oscar win came for "On The Waterfront" in 1955.

Today's Your Last Day To Watch 250+ Criterion Movies Not In The Criterion Collection Yet... For Free

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • February 18, 2013 2:55 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Apologies in advance to Criterion Collection-obsessives, hardcore cinephiles, Hulu users and anyone else pre-disposed to getting angry with anything on the internet that's not 100% fresh and new (and or those who assume this is going to be a paid endorsement of Hulu). As you may have heard, Hulu is streaming their entire Criterion Collection for free this long President's Day weekend (today's your last day to take advantage). That's all well and good, but the real draw for us -- and this is what's old news to what we assume are eagle-eyed cinephiles/Criterion-ites -- is the fact that there are some 100+ titles with the Criterion Collection logo on them in Hulu's database that aren't actually in the Criterion Collection on DVD or Blu-Ray yet.

Criterion's May Slate Includes '3:10 To Yuma,' Haskell Wexler's 'Medium Cool,' Mike Leigh's 'Life Is Sweet' & More

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • February 15, 2013 3:12 PM
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  • 6 Comments
Saddle up, because Criterion has dropped the veil on the May releases and they've got a couple of gunslinging classics to share, along with some works from a couple auteurs and much more. So let's dive in.

William Friedkin Says 'Sorcerer' Finally Getting Digital Transfer, But Won't Be On Criterion

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • February 12, 2013 10:01 AM
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  • 2 Comments
2012 proved by turns an odd and triumphant year for director William Friedkin, who fashioned Matthew McConaughey's performance in the shockingly good “Killer Joe,” but also was forced into dealing with his troubled past, namely the 1977 suspense drama “Sorcerer.” Legal difficulties and lawsuits surrounding the film have plagued the past 12 months for the filmmaker, but now it appears Friedkin may finally gain some peace with his underseen gem.

'Repo Man' & Laurence Olivier's 'Richard III' Lead Criterion's April Slate

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 15, 2013 4:52 PM
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  • 3 Comments
This spring, The Criterion Collection have both cult and classic movies on their mind, and their newly announced April slate will have for something for fans of either category -- or both.

Watch: Guillermo Del Toro Talks Alfred Hitchcock's Dark Humor In 1934's 'The Man Who Knew Too Much'

  • By Ken Guidry
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  • January 15, 2013 11:16 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Today, Alfred Hitchcock’s "The Man Who Knew Too Much" will officially be available on Blu-ray via The Criterion Collection. To honor its release, Criterion has posted a video on YouTube of Guillermo del Toro ("Hellboy," "Pan’s Labyrinth") speaking very fondly of the film and of Hitchcock. Del Toro explains why he considers the 1934 film to be the earliest evidence of Hitchcock’s greatness.

'The Tenant,' 'Eraserhead,' 'Scanners' & More Teased From The Criterion Collection For 2013

  • By Charlie Schmidlin
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  • January 2, 2013 9:23 AM
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  • 6 Comments
One of the many pleasures of the Criterion Collection comes in the form of their monthly newsletters, in which they make good on a series of crude drawings hinting at upcoming releases (which in 2012 gave us a Robert Downey Sr. retrospective, “Quadrophenia,” and “Harold and Maude” among many others). It's a fun, collaborative peek into the months ahead, and in their fourth-annual Mega-Clue drawing for 2013, the folks over at CriterionCast have parsed out what looks to be a promising year indeed.

5 Things We Learned from Criterion’s Stunning Blu-Ray of René Clément's 'Purple Noon' Starring Alain Delon

  • By Peter Labuza
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  • December 23, 2012 10:45 AM
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  • 7 Comments
Purple Noon" is the smarter, exsistential counterpoint to Anthony Minghella’s adaptation with Matt Damon, forgoing the melodramatic angle for something more profound, while combining elements later seen in films by the Coens, Polanski, Scorsese, and Coppola. In honor of Criterion’s new Blu-Ray, here are five things we learned about the making of this classic:

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