How does a film get to be selected to get the Criterion treatment? Though it has a nice DVD special edition, I would love to see Se7en get its own Criterion set.
Hasn’t that already happened on Laserdisc? I believe they lost the rights to it when they started up on DVD. The “nice DVD special edition” is actually the original CC Laserdisc release…enjoy.
What about films like Days of Heaven? It has a regular DVD set and a Criterion one. How does that happen?
Criterion releases DVDs under license from the copyright holder, they themselves are not the copyright holder. In many cases the Criterion edition is the only version available, but that’s not necessarily the case.
Typically it’s based on a combination of factors: films deemed historically significant in the world of cinema, films that haven’t been given decent releases and the fact that whether or not Criterion can get the rights to the films. But there’s been some inconsistency, as some commercial blockbusters have made it into the collection, i.e. Michael Bay’s “Armageddon” and “The Rock,” as well as “Robocop,” “The Silence of the Lambs” and the most recently announced “Benjamin Button.” Like any business, Criterion depends on having films in its catalogue that are revenue generators, and this has been a popular argument as to why these films were given Criterion treatments.
Oh, and by the way, I really liked “Seven,” but feel “Zodiac” was the more ambitious effort and worthy of a Criterion release.
I don’t know why you all live and die by Criterion. Se7en’s in the New Line Platinum Series, which is just as great imo. I own it and Boogie Nights. Their packaging is pretty neat; I prefer it to Criterion’s.
The Vista Series has some fantastic DVDs too.
Lester – Before Zodiac, I felt Se7en was Fincher’s best. I agree with you that Zodiac is more ambitious. After a few viewings, I feel that Zodiac is Fincher’s finest work.
Samantha – New Line has released some wonderful DVD sets. Like you, I own Se7en and Boogie Nights. I also own Magnolia. All brilliant sets, no doubt, and do justice to the films. I own Vista Series editions of The Sixth Sense and Unbreakable – excellent sets as well. So I agree with you.
I just feel that Criterion DVDs (& now Blu-Ray Discs!) bring their A game for every movie they select. The case artwork is always wonderful; the extra features are almost always awesome; the movies themselves are also better; most importantly, the technical specs for each film is superb. No disrespect to New Line or any other DVD provider, but Criterion just has the edge.