Thursday, August 15, 2013

Criterion Collection Announces New Titles for November 2013

     The Criterion Collection, the boutique distributor and restorer of classic, contemporary and important films, have announced there upcoming slate of releases for November, 2013. The company announces new releases on the 15th of every month for the films they will be releasing in two and half months. Most of the films are highly coveted and always intriguing. I am not saying they are all perfect pieces of cinema and many believe if it is released by Criterion it is gold, but the films usually have merit in some, if not all, aspects of the filmmaking process. One film might have an interesting back story or history, wonderful cinematography or acting that is truly extraordinary. I look at the releases and know that I am going to find something compelling about them. The collection contains over 650 films and is a crash course in film history. There are films from every decade and from all over the world. I am a geek for the collection and have amassed quite an impressive personal collection myself. The price is usually high, roughly $30 to $40 dollars per film, but the quality is precise and most of the releases contain tremendous and thoughtful supplements that dive into certain aspects of each film. Each film contains documentaries, interviews, visual essays and booklets that contain thoughtful commentary on the film or filmmakers. It is quite an amazing collection and is cineastes dream. Now, on to the upcoming releases.
     Novembers releases present a monumental box set of the classic Zatoichi films. It is a 27-disc box set that contains 25 films that were based on the legendary "Blind Swordsman -- Zatocichi." The first film, The Tale of Zatoichi (1962) to Zatoichi's Conspirarcy (1973). I have never seen any of these films, but most of them are in the Criterion section on Hulu. Another interesting point is that with the November releases, the company is going away with releasing films on Blu-Ray and DVD individually. They will now be dual-format with the Blu-Ray and DVD in one package. At least the price on these are not doubling are anything.

    The rest of the releases include Noah Baumbach's Frances Ha (2013), Charles Chaplin's romantic comedy masterpiece City Lights (1931) and an upgrade of Yasujiro Ozu's classic Tokyo Story (1953). I will be looking to purchase all of these three releases. I have seen the Chaplin and Ozu, and cannot wait to see Frances Ha. I am really excited to dive back into Tokyo Story. The film is elegantly shot, beautifully paced and the differences between the older parents and their two married children in the city. I did not fully appreciate it the first time I saw it and do not think I was ready for what I was watching. The images, writing, acting and directing were all mesmerizing and I cannot wait to see it again.

Release Date 11.26.2013
Release Date 11.12.2013
Release Date 11.12.2013

Photo credits to
Release Date 11.19.2013

     Search out the Criterion Collection's website,, for more information. It is a great place to get a new kind of education on film and film history. There are so many films in the collection and so many different genres, countries and directors to dig in to. Enjoy.


  1. Nice write-up. I'm really excited for November's releases. FRANCES HA is one of my favorite films of 2013. And that Zatoichi set is incredible. Won't be able to afford it, of course, but awesome nonetheless.

  2. Thanks! I am going to try and start watching some of the Zatoichi films on HULU soon. That is just an unbelievable set and super pricey. I can't wait see FRANCES HA. I missed it when it was in limited theaters.