Launched in North America in 1984, the Criterion Collection’s state-of-the-art, extras-stuffed home entertainment releases of classic films have been tantalisingly beyond the reach of home viewers in the UK – unless, that is, you invested in a multi-region player.
Now, following a deal struck between Criterion and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Brits can at last get their mitts on the company’s highly covetable discs.
The first batch of titles from Criterion’s extensive catalogue are released on Blu-ray in the UK today and feature all the supplements from the US editions along with their exclusive artwork and packaging. The six films are as follows:
Grey Gardens, David and Albert Maysles’ riveting 1975 documentary about two eccentrically faded socialites (the aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis) and their bizarre lifestyle in their equally decaying 28-room East Coast mansion.
It Happened One Night, Frank Capra’s classic 1934 romantic comedy starring Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert as a cynical reporter and the runaway heiress he aids in her flight – the first film to sweep the Oscars, claiming Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Screenplay.
Macbeth, Roman Polanski’s violent and erotic 1971 screen adaptation of Shakespeare’s tragedy.
Only Angels Have Wings, Howard Hawks’s classic 1939 romantic adventure about mail pilots stationed in South America, starring Cary Grant, Jean Arthur and Rita Hayworth.
Speedy, Harold Lloyd’s last silent film, the fast and furious 1928 comedy about a baseball-mad young man trying to save the last horse-drawn trams in New York.
Tootsie, Sydney Pollack’s classic cross-dressing comedy (1982) starring Dustin Hoffman as an out-of-work actor who dresses as a woman to land a role in a daytime soap and becomes the show’s most popular character. His disguise gets to be a drag, however, when he falls for his beautiful co-star, played by Jessica Lange.