What are you watching on the Criterion Channel?

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by Electric, Jan 2, 2020.

  1. JAuz

    JAuz Forum Resident

    Location:
    US
    Does watching these movies on HBO Max count? They seem to have hundreds of Janus/Criterion movies. I've been going through the 100 Years Of Olympic Films collection. The one about Rome in 1960 (The Grand Olympics) is really great. I've seen the one about Tokyo 1964 before, but it's a good time to watch that one again. The first one is from Stockhom in 1912; those early ones should be interesting.
     
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  2. Electric

    Electric The Medium is the Massage Thread Starter

    This thread is specifically about the Criterion Channel.
     
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  3. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    Finished it last night. Quite charming if a bit idyllic. Recommended.
     
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  4. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    [​IMG]
    The Moment of Truth (1965, Franceso Rosi)

    A visceral plunge into the life of a famous torero—played by real-life bullfighting legend Miguel Mateo, known as Miguelín. Charting his rise and fall with a single-minded focus on the bloody business at hand, the film is at once gritty and operatic, placing the viewer right in the thick of the ring’s action, as close to death as possible. Like all of the great Italian truth seeker’s films, this is not just an electrifying drama but also a profound and moving inquiry into a violent world—and it’s perhaps the greatest bullfighting movie ever made.

    It's always been my opinion that bullfighting is stupid. Perhaps I'm missing something. But Rosi's films are always interesting visually (as I'm appreciating going through the handful available to stream on the channel) and I'm watching this one now. The above post has one of the few YT videos featuring the late director (who apparently never spoke in English) with subs talking about the project. Cheers.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2021
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  5. MitchFlorida

    MitchFlorida Forum Resident

    Location:
    Florida
    Sure, go ahead, as long as it is a Criterion film.
     
  6. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    Hundreds? Really? Should do a trial just to compare the libraries. Thanks.
     
  7. Hyacinth House

    Hyacinth House Forum Resident

    Location:
    Vancouver, WA
    Being There

    This is one of my favorite comedies. I love it when Melvyn Douglas uses the gardening metaphors.

    There's a great bonus feature interview where Peter Sellers speaks like Dr. Strangelove.
     
  8. JAuz

    JAuz Forum Resident

    Location:
    US
    This article claims over 300:
    Why is HBO Max Hiding Its Criterion Movie Selection?

    They don't make them easy to find though. They should have a Criterion hub like they do for TCM, Studio Ghibli, HBO, Looney Tunes, etc.
     
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  9. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    From the article:
    The rise of streaming has made classic movies from all over the world easier to see, yet people in the US mainly talk about recent Hollywood movies and ignore movies from Europe and Asia.

    Ya think? :winkgrin:

    And no, they don't make a Criterion search easy, JAuz. A director name search is probably the best way to go with that algorithm .
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2021
  10. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    However, only The Criterion Channel has one of my top five of all time (forgive me, we're all stuck on a few :)) films streaming...

    [​IMG]
    Grand Illusion (1937, Jean Renoir)

    Spine #1 (if memory serves) of the entire collection is an old favorite. Renoir, in the clip above, provides the best intro to his film. It's never easy to describe just why a favorite film has held its hold on you for so long. The reasons aren't always (and usually not) in accord with prevailing tastes but universal enough for a minority of folk to raise a glass in salute. Here's to Renoir.
     
  11. Electric

    Electric The Medium is the Massage Thread Starter

    Could we please stick to the Criterion Channel. Some people here, like myself, don't get HBO. Thanks.
     
  12. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    [​IMG]
    Lonely Are The Brave (1962, David Miller)

    Last day to watch this one. Glad I got a viewing in. One of the best from'62. The late Kirk Douglas, in the post above (in several parts), talks about the film (spoilers!).
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2021
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  13. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    [​IMG]
    John Huston: Hollywood Maverick 19 Films

    Ok, so the trailer (above) isn't Criterion's but I think all the films shown, either featuring or directing, involve John Huston - and most (if not all) are available to watch on the channel in August.
     
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  14. wondergrape

    wondergrape Forum Resident

    Location:
    Ohio
    Watched Tampopo the other night. What a delightful film. It reminded me a bit of The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie, but with more food, Western tropes, and starring Japanese people.
     
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  15. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    Have yet to watch the Bunuel classic but yeah, Tampopo is a lot of fun. And though I've never thought about it, very "Western" in its episodic structure.
     
  16. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    [​IMG]
    The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars & Motor Kings (1976, John Badham)

    A 1930s-set sports comedy, where disgruntled baseball player Bingo Long (Billy Dee Williams), fed up with the shabby treatment he gets from his manager, quits the Negro Leagues to form his own team of superstars—and it’s not long before he and his squad of barnstormers are traveling the country and making a name for themselves with their outlandish on-field antics. A scene-stealing Richard Pryor shares the screen with James Earl Jones in this Motown-produced ode to the unsung Black baseball heroes of the early twentieth century.

    Glad to see one of my favorite baseball flicks on the channel. Rarely seen on the best baseball movies of all time lists it is nevertheless a 70s classic from long-time tv and film director, John Badham. He talked with a YT poster/interviewer above in one of the better interviews on the site from earlier in the year. Badham's credits are pretty impressive. Need to watch more of his stuff. He also has a book out that was recently published called On Directing that's gotten getting good reviews.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2021
  17. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    [​IMG]
    The Ear (1970, Karel Kachyňa)

    This paranoid surveillance thriller unfolds over the course of a tense, turbulent night in the life of Ludvík (Radoslav Brzobohatý), a Communist party official, and his wife Anna (Jiřina Bohdalová). Returning home from a party one evening, the pair discover that their house has been broken into and bugged—and that the state may be listening in on their every word. A number of Ludvík’s colleagues have already been terminated in an ongoing purge: could he be next? Completed in 1970 but banned for twenty years, THE EAR masterfully evokes the ever-present sense of dread that defines life under authoritarianism. -CC

    Hard to find reviews on this one. The poster above gives a good intro.
     
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  18. Jim B.

    Jim B. Forum Resident

    Location:
    UK
    There is no such thing as a 'Criterion Movie' though is there. They just licence films to remaster from other studios. So unless HBO Max has licensed the master that Criterion has produced then they are just films?
     
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  19. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    Well, it really just means titles that are cataloged in the Criterion Collection by spine number. Criterion remasters are generally superior to older editions of films but not necessarily to other boutique label versions. And while I don't think every title included in the catalogue is an example of "great filmmaking' I will give CC credit for including films that hold some kind of intrigue over and above the standard dreck you see in the cinema or on television.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2021
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  20. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    [​IMG]
    I Will Buy You
    (1956, Masaki Kobayashi)

    On a baseball roll. Masaki Kobayashi's pitiless take on Japan's professional baseball industry is unlike any other sports film ever made. A condemnation of the inhumanity bred by a mercenary, bribery-fueled business, it follows the sharklike maneuvers of a scout dead set on signing a promising player to the team the Toyo Flowers. -CC

    This was surprisingly frank and sentimental about the destructiveness of professional sports on human relationships, although it questions if it exacerbates their already poor conditions and/or if pro sports simply reflects them. The framing is often beautiful and the editing, particularly the cutting, distinguishes it. Recommended. Interesting overview of Kobayashi's career above.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2021
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  21. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
  22. Carl Swanson

    Carl Swanson Forum Resident

    The Ruling Class.
     
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  23. shark shaped fin

    shark shaped fin Forum Resident

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    MACAO (Josef von Sternberg/Nicholas Ray), with Robert Mitchum, Jane Russell, William Bendix, Gloria Grahame, and Brad Dexter (part of their trio of Jane Russell films.)

    Mitchum is very good here, though he's dialed down slightly more than some of his co-stars, even more than he usually is. Dexter is a solid villain and actually similarly dialed-down; when he and Mitchum have their face-offs it's a competition to see who can be the most low-key. Bendix is a garrulous American salesman who befriends Mitchum's down-on-his-luck nomad, and gets in a few good lines in the process. Gloria Grahame has a very minor role as a croupier at the casino/somewhat ill-defined companion of Dexter's, whose loyalties to him aren't very strong.

    Russell is really the star, of course, and more of the lead character. She's got a very memorable introductory shot, and spends the rest of the movie looking incredible and not taking any $&*# from anyone. She's extremely good here, and for all her character's con artistry and thievery she also makes her extremely likable.

    The plot isn't really much, it basically just involves a fairly inept-seeming effort by international authorities to bring Dexter's casino boss crook to justice, and how our lead trio finds themselves tied up in it.

    It was apparently a critical and commercial flop, but it's a pretty entertaining B-film with a lot of star power.
     
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  24. NickySee

    NickySee Forum Resident

    Location:
    New York, NY
    This one does look intriguing. Streaming on TCM, too. Noticing a lot of shared titles between the two channels lately.
     
  25. Electric

    Electric The Medium is the Massage Thread Starter

    Of the time, and quite iconic:

    La piscine
    Directed by Jacques Deray • 1969 • France
    Starring Alain Delon, Romy Schneider, Maurice Ronet

    The bright sun of the French Riviera is deceptive in this alluring work of slow-burn suspense from thriller specialist Jacques Deray and legendary screenwriter Jean-Claude Carrière. Formerly one of European cinema’s most iconic real-life couples, Alain Delon and Romy Schneider reunited for this film, bringing a palpable erotic chemistry to their performances as the bronzed and beautiful vacationers whose summer holiday on the Côte d’Azur is interrupted by the arrival of an old acquaintance (Maurice Ronet) and his eighteen-year-old daughter (Jane Birkin)—unleashing a gathering wave of sexual tension, jealousy, and sudden violence. A paragon of 1960s modernist cool thanks to effortlessly chic clothes and a loungy Michel Legrand score, LA PISCINE dives deep to reveal sinister undercurrents roiling beneath its seductive surfaces.

    [​IMG]
     
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