"No one can see every release during the entire calendar year - so we hope our lists can introduce and expose some of the many lauded DVDs and Blu-rays that surfaced during 2010. You may find some unique surprises. We see no viable reason to discriminate based on regional limitations or broadcast standards. Expanding the borders of your cinema horizons has always been the primary goal of this website. We always appreciate your suggestions and contributions."

DVDBeaver

 

DVDBeaver are proud to announce our voting results for DVD and Blu-ray of the Year - 2010. We've done our best to help expose some of the important, and often clandestine, digital packages that surfaced in the last 12 months.

 

I continue to love this poll. The learning process never ends about new and worthwhile releases. I'm curious to see which editions friends will choose and whether my mental predictions were close. I feel stable seeing how certain participants consistently select the similar titles year after year.... and compare how mine match with others. This was a huge year for silent film with von Sternberg, Murnau, Lang, Chaplin, and Lubitsch being found scattered near or at the top of the poll. I recently looked at a list I made a long while back of my all-time favorite films and this year almost 1/3 came to Blu-ray! This poll encourages me to probe deeper - seeking new film experiences, enriching my life and broadening my library selections. 2010 was an amazing year and the party appears to be continuing. I'm staying till they throw me out on my ass. We appreciate esteemed journalists Jonathan Rosenbaum and Peter Hoskin, archivist/producers Nick Wrigley, Christiane Habich and James White, author Stuart Galbraith IV, webmasters Daniel Stuyck, Ross Willbanks, Michael Den Boer, editor Mikkel Leffers Svendstrup, informed cinephiles Jan Bielawski, Bruce Kimmel and David Hare plus the staff of Slant Magazine and many more joining in the fun. Big thanks ALL who participated and to new daddy, Adam Lemke for his loyalty and painstaking effort of both organization and tallying!      

 

Balloters (click name to access votes):

 

Jan Bielawski       Noel Bjorndahl     Angelo Columbus

Eric Cotenas       Michael Den Boer        Ben Ewing       Thomas Friedman

Stuart Galbraith      Christiane Habich  

David Hare        Peter Hoskin      Bruce Kimmel

  Adam Lampe      Lynn Lascaro        Adam Lemke       

Tom Mahaffey        Gregory Meshman       Brian Montgomery       John Nelson    

   Peter Neski        Leonard Norwitz       George Papamargaritis        Luc Pomerleau         

 Jonathan Rosenbaum        Bill Routt       Slant Magazine

    Per-Olaf Strandberg           Daniel Stuyck      

Mikkel Leffers Svendstrup                Gary Tooze             Troy Weets

James White          Ross Wilbanks         Nick Wrigley          Nick Zegarac

The Totals (click to access)

TOP 35 in Total

THE TOP TEN DVDs OF 2010              11th - 20th

THE TOP TEN Blu-rays OF 2010              11th - 20th

 Label Results        Best Cover Design

     Best Audio Commentary       Best Extras

Guilty pleasures

NOTE: THE FOLLOWING ARE PURCHASE LINKS:

'BUY from Amazon!' is a clickable purchase link to Amazon

'BUY from CDJapan!' is a clickable purchase link to CDJapan

'BUY from YesAsia!' is a clickable purchase link to YesAsia

'Click to access Warner Archive' is a clickable purchase link to The Warner Archive

 

 


Jan Bielawski
San Francisco, CA, USA
Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
2.
Les Vacances de M. Hulot (Jacques Tati, 1953) BFI; R B BUY from Amazon!
3.
Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4. 8 1/2
(Federico Fellini, 1963)
Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
5. Walkabout
(Nicolas Roeg, 1971)
Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
6. Wings of Desire
(Wim Wenders, 1987) Axiom Films; RB
BUY from Amazon!
7. Danton
(Andrzej Wajda, 1983) Gaumont; RB
BUY from Amazon!
8. Mystery Train
(Jim Jarmusch, 1989)
Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
9. Mulholland Drive
(David Lynch, 2001) RB Optimum; RB
BUY from Amazon!
10. Paris, Texas
(Wim Wenders, 1984)
Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!


Comments:
It's a bit of a rehash of classics but Blu-rays are SO addictive and it's like watching something new. Notable on the list is the first-ever video release (AFAIK) of the original cut of Tati's "
Les Vacances de M. Hulot". Also Wajda's "Danton".

 


 

Noel Bjorndahl

Woodford, NSW, Australia

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases
1. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics II (Human Desire/ Pushover/ Nightfall/ The Brothers Rico/ City of Fear), Fritz Lang, Richard Quine, Phil Karlson, Jacques Tourneur, Irving Lerner, 1953-59, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
4. Spawn of the North (Henry Hathaway, 1938) Universal Backlot, R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. The Long Haul (Ken Hughes, 1957) Columbia Archive, R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. Madam Satan (Cecil B De Mille, 1930) Warner Bros Archive; R1 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
7. Gunman's Walk  (Phil Karlson, 1958) Sidonis R2 France PAL BUY from Amazon!
8. Stranded (Frank Borzage, 1935) Warner Bros Archive, R1 Click to access Warner Archive
9. La Signora di Tutti (Max Ophuls, 1934) Masters of Cinema/Eureka, R2 BUY from Amazon!
10. Icons of Suspense Collection: Hammer Films (Stop Me Before I Kill/Cash on Demand/ Never Take Candy from a Stranger/ The Snorkel/ The Damned), 1957-1962, Sony R1 BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: I'd love to see the Sternbergs go to Blu-Ray; seeing Human Desire after 20 years or so revealed a work that even topped its illustrious predecessor La Bete Humaine (Renoir) and for me is easily one of Lang's top 5 films; The Long Haul was a major discovery-a dark, noirish film with great Scottish locations by the underrated genre director Ken Hughes; Never Take Candy from a Stranger, largely unseen for decades, was another beaut Hammer discovery in the Icons of Suspense box. A good year for box sets and, much as I'm reluctant to endorse the DVD-Rs on demand, Warners and Columbia are rolling out some absolute gems.

Blu-Ray
1.
Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey 1937), Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
2.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
4.
Les Demoiselles de Rochefort (Jacques Demy, 1966) Arte; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
5.
Psycho (50th Anniversary Edition) (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) Universal; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
6.
Pandora and the Flying Dutchman (Albert Lewin, 1951) Kino; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
7.
Wake in Fright (Ted Kotcheff, 1971) National Film&Sound Archive Australia/Madman R ALL
8.
Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? (Frank Tashlin, 1957) Masters of Cinema/Eureka, RB BUY from Amazon!
9.
Late Spring (Ozu Yasujiro, 1949) BFI, RB BUY from Amazon!
10.
French Can Can (Jean Renoir, 1955) Gaumont; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: This has been my first year collecting Blu-Ray. I'm impressed by and delighted with the technological leap forward on most transfers, but there have been a couple of major disappointments, notably some RB Chaplins (Park Circus) and especially Peeping Tom-like everyone else has pointed out already, the transfer is a shocker and I hope someone will remedy it.


Angelo Colombus
Round Lake, Illinois
USA
Top SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1. Sammy Going South (Alexander Mackendrick, 1963) Optimum R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
2. I Knew it Was You: Rediscovering John Cazale (Richard Shepard, 2010) Oscilloscope; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. Shadows Of Forgotten Ancestors (Sergei Parajanov, 1964) Artificial Eye R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
4. The Pumpkin Eater (Jack Clayton, 1964) Sony Pictures R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
2.
A Star is Born (George Cukor, 1954) Warner; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Red Shoes (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 1948) Criterion RA BUY from Amazon!
4.
Black Narcissus (Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1947) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!.
5.
The Complete Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927) Kino; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
6.
Walkabout (Nicolas Roeg, 1971) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
7.
The Leopard, (Luchino Visconti, 1963) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
8.
Steamboat Bill Jr. (Charles Reisner & Buster Keaton 1928) Kino; RA BUY from Amazon!
9.
The African Queen (John Huston, 1951) Paramount; R ALL  BUY from Amazon!
10.
Days Of Heaven (Terrence Malick 1978) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!


Eric Cotenas

CineVentures Blog

Sacramento, CA, USA

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1. The Visitor (Giulio Paradisi, 1979) Code Red; R0 BUY from Amazon!

2. The Mafu Cage (Karen Arthur, 1978) Scorpion Releasing; R1 BUY from Amazon!

3. Terror at the Opera (Dario Argento, 1987) Arrow; R0 PAL  BUY from Amazon!

4. The Man Who Lies (Alain Robbe-Grillet, 1968) Ripley’s Home Video; R2 PAL  BUY from Amazon!

5. Icons of Suspense Collection: Hammer Films (Stop Me Before I Kill/Cash on Demand/ Never Take Candy from a Stranger/ The Snorkel/ The Damned), 1957-1962, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!

6. A Lizard In A Woman's Skin (Lucio Fulci, 1971)  Optimum; R2 PAL  BUY from Amazon!

7. Scream (Byron Quisenberry, 1981) Shriek Show; R1 BUY from Amazon!

8. Behind Convent Walls (Walerian Borowczyk, 1978) Cult Epics; R1 BUY from Amazon!

9. Eccentricities of a Blonde-Haired Girl (Manoel de Oliveira, 2009) Cinema Guild; R1 BUY from Amazon!

10. Video Nasties (Jake West and Marc Morris, 2009) Nucleus Films; R 0 PAL BUY from Amazon!

 

Comments:  After three years, Code Red finally put out their release of The Visitor.  Not only did it trump the previous English-friendly import for picture quality, it got the full special edition treatment as only Code Red could do it with dual commentary tracks from the lead actresses as well as interviews with the cast and crew.  Cult Epics originally released Tinto Brass’ THE VOYEUR in 2008 in separate English producer’s cut and Italian director’s cut versions.  Their 2010 edition features a restored English cut (although the English versions have been much shorter than the original Italian version, a complete English dub was found in the vaults) along with the Italian track and English subs.  Manoel de Oliveira’s still alive and kicking with Eccentricities of a Blonde-Haired Girl, which is offered up by the intriguing new Cinema Guild in a progressive transfer (with a promo for De Oliveira’s next film and some worthy extras).  At last, another Walerian Borowcyzk title from Cult Epics, and its progressive, features the French and Italian dubs and English subs (and the English dub) as well as an interview with cinematographer Luciano Tovoli.  Sony finally put Hammer’s THESE ARE THE DAMNED out on a set with some of Hammer’s lesser-known thrillers.  Too arty for its exploitation-oriented theatrical and video releases, Karen Arthur’s masterful The Mafu Cage has been given the special edition treatment with two commentaries and lead actor, director, and crew interviews from Scorpion Releasing.  Since it was announced by one company (then canceled for low pre-orders) and then unexpectedly picked up by another company, Byron Quisenberry’s Scream was a satisfying DVD release.  While it is by no means a remotely good film, there’s a sort of masochistic satisfaction in seeing this oddly atmospheric sub-slasher get a high-bitrate, dual-layer anamorphic transfer with audio commentary when the major companies dump their genre fare out mostly on single-layer discs with no extras (Universal can’t even scrounge up trailers for their horror discs).  The transfer of Arrow’s Terror at the Opera had nothing new over the existing editions but Arrow’s 2010 edition gave us the uncut version with both English dubs and the Italian dub with English subtitles as well as a reconstruction of the more streamlined cut prepared by Orion Pictures for the aborted US theatrical release.  Although Media Blasters/Shriek Show had chain of title for A Lizard In A Woman's Skin, the rights holder was apparently less than helpful with print elements so Shriek Show had to make due with an MGM-supplied print of the American version (MGM acquired the AIP library through Orion but do not possess home video rights for this title) and its two R1 DVDs (and an R2 Italian release) made various patch-up attempts to restore the full picture.  This year, however, Studio Canal provided the UK company Optimum with a beautiful negative-sourced transfer that was further augmented with footage from other versions to make the most complete release available.  Ripley’s Home Video followed-up their non-English-friendly HD-mastered DVDs of Eden and After and Trans_Europe-Express from last year with a nice transfer of The Man Who Lies, one of my favorite Robbe-Grillets.  Nucleus Films gave us the fantastic documentary Video Nasties in a stunning limited edition 3-disc package with almost seven hours of extras.  In addition to the documentary, Nucleus gave us a second DVD with trailers (some painstakingly reconstructed) of all of the films on the Video Nasties list, all with contextual introductions by genre authorities ranging from the cheeky to the profound.  A third disc featured even more trailers for titles that were dropped from the list, all with contextual introductions. 

 

There’s a new rule this year that we can’t list top ten DVDs if there is a Blu-ray edition available so I’ll just give a shout out to the Blu’s I’ve seen on DVD and assume that the HD versions are significant improvements over their SD counterparts: Criterion’s Antichrist, Black Narcissus, Cronos and House, Blue Underground and Arrow’s competing editions of City of the Living Dead, Cult Epics’ Score, and Synapse Films’ Vampire Circus!


Michael Den Boer
10kbullets.com
Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1. The Visitor (Giulio Paradisi, 1979) Code Red ; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. Love Exposure (Shion Sono, 2008) Third Window; UK R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
3. Girly (aka Mumsy, Nanny, Sonny and Girly) (Freddie Francis, 1970) Scorpion; R0 BUY from Amazon!
4. Icons of Suspense Collection: Hammer Films (Stop Me Before I Kill/Cash on Demand/ Never Take Candy from a Stranger/ The Snorkel/ The Damned), 1957-1962, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. So Sweet, So Dead (Roberto Bianchi Montero, 1972) Camera Obscura; Germany R2 PAL
6. The Law (La Loi) (Jules Dassin, 1959) Oscilloscope; R0 BUY from Amazon!
7. Dillinger Is Dead (Marco Ferreri, 1969) Criterion Collection; R1 BUY from Amazon!
8. Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
9. Horror High (35th Anniversary Edition) (Larry N. Stouffer, 1974) Code Red; R0 BUY from Amazon!
10. Stranger on the Third Floor (Boris Ingster, 1940) Warner Archive; R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Battle Royale (Kinji Fukasaku, 2000) Arrow Video R'ALL'  BUY from Amazon!
2.
Score (Radley Metzger, 1972) Cult Epics R'ALL'  BUY from Amazon!
3.
Apocalypse Now (3-disc) (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Lionsgate; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
4.
Vivre sa vie (Jean-Luc Godard, 1962) Criterion R'A'  BUY from Amazon!
5.
City of the Living Dead (Lucio Fulci, 1980) Blue Underground R'ALL'  BUY from Amazon!
6.
The African Queen (John Huston, 1951) Paramount R'ALL'  BUY from Amazon!
7.
M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Criterion; R'A' BUY from Amazon!
8.
Fallen Angels (Wong Kar-Wai, 1997) Kino R'ALL'  BUY from Amazon!
9.
Kamikaze Girls (Tetsuya Nakashima, 2004) Third Window R'B' BUY from Amazon!
10.
Broken Embraces (Pedro Almodovar, 2009) Sony R'A'  BUY from Amazon!


Ben Ewing

New Haven, CT, USA

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010
1. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. Letters from Fontainhas: Three Films by Pedro Costa (Ossos, In Vanda’s Room, Colossal Youth, Pedro Costa, 1997/2000/2006) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
4. Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. There’s Always Tomorrow (Douglas Sirk, 1956) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
6. La Signora Di Tutti (Max Ophuls, 1934) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
7. Sous Le Soleil de Satan (Maurice Pialat, 1987) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
8. Three Films By Jean-Marie Straub and Daniele Huillet (1968/1998/2004) New Wave Films; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
9. The Frantisek Vlacil Collection - (Frantisek Vlacil 67-70) Second Run; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
10. Presenting Sacha Guitry (The Story of a Cheat, The Pearls of the Crown, Desire and Quadrille - Sacha Guitry, 1936-1938) Eclipse; R1 BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: It’s a shame that Criterion didn’t release the top three DVD sets here on Blu-ray, but they’re terrific collections nonetheless. The Eclipse series continues its exciting run. The Allan King Eclipse release just narrowly missed inclusion here.
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1. Paris, Texas (Wim Wenders, 1984) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
2. Mystery Train (Jim Jarmusch, 1989) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
3. Modern Times (Charlie Chaplin, 1936) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
4.
City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
5. Bigger Than Life (Nicholas Ray, 1956) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
6. Close-Up (Abbas Kiarostami, 1990) Criterion Collection; RA
BUY from Amazon!
7. Vivre Sa Vie (Jean-Luc Godard, 1962) Criterion Collection; RA
BUY from Amazon!
8.
The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick, 1998) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
9.
Lola Montes (Max Ophuls, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
10.
Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey, 1937) Masters of Cinema; RB BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: I had a hard time choosing among the many great Blu-ray releases this year—and weighing my enthusiasm for the films against the strengths of the various packages—so I decided to give significant weight to whether a release filled a void where no DVD/Blu-ray, or only a significantly lesser quality and/or out of print one, previously existed. This meant that I excluded some terrific releases such as Breathless, Days Of Heaven, Red Desert, and the Ozu BFIs, not for lack of quality but because they merely upgraded format without offering much else new.


Thomas Friedman

Tallahassee, Florida, USA

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Apocalypse Now (3-disc) (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Lionsgate; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
2.
The Magician (Ingmar Bergman, 1958), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3.
Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4.
Yojimbo/Sanjuro (Akira Kurosawa, 1961/1963) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
5.
The Leopard, (Luchino Visconti, 1963) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
6.
Tora, Tora, Tora (Richard Fleischer, Kinji Fukasaku, Toshio Masuda, 1970) Fox-UK; R All BUY from Amazon!
7.
The Sound of Music (Robert Wise, 1965) Fox; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
8.
The African Queen (John Huston, 1951) R'ALL' Paramount BUY from Amazon!
9.
Black Narcissus (Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1947) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
10a.
Bridge on the River Kwai, (David Lean, 1957) Sony; R All BUY from Amazon!
10b.
Paths of Glory (Stanley Kubrick, 1957) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: What a fascinating, difficult year. It was the year of great Directors, with a capital "D." Coppola, Bergman, Kurosawa, Visconti, Wise, Huston, Powell & Pressburger, Lean and Kubrick; gosh! Making a cut was exhausting as Potemkin, Stagecoach, Steamboat Bill, Charade, Moulin Rouge and a number of others had to be eliminated for some minor reason or another; the best I could do was eleven titles. The best of the year is "Apocalypse Now, Full Disclosure Edition." It's a stupendous movie coupled with a superb remastering and outstanding supplements; a great achievement in every way. A couple of years ago, I would have never believed the studios would spend the huge sums needed to remaster and issue these classics in high definition for what I imagine must be a limited audience. I often think of the Akira Kurasawa quote, “It is wonderful to create,” and am thankful we can all share these treasures and that they have been preserved for future generations.


Stuart Galbraith IV

Kyoto, Japan

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010
1. Eyes on the Prize: America's Civil Rights Years, 1954-1965 (Henry Hampton, 1987) PBS; R1
BUY from Amazon!
2. The Ultimate Goldbergs (various, 1949-56) Shout! Factory; R1
BUY from Amazon!
3. Thriller - The Complete Series (various, 1960-62) Image; R1
BUY from Amazon!
4. Leave It to Beaver - The Complete Series (various, 1957-63) Shout! Factory; R1
BUY from Amazon!
5. Ellery Queen Mysteries (various, 1975-76) Entertainment One; R1
BUY from Amazon!
6.
Icons of Suspense Collection: Hammer Films (Stop Me Before I Kill/Cash on Demand/ Never Take Candy from a Stranger/ The Snorkel/ The Damned), 1957-1962, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7. Buster Keaton - Lost Keaton - Sixteen Comedy Shorts, 1934-1937 (various, 1934-37) Kino; R1
BUY from Amazon!
8.
Film Noir Classics Collection 5 (Cornered, Deadline at Dawn, Desperate, Backfirem, Armored Car Robbery, Dial 1119, The Phenix City Story, Crime in the Streets) 45-56, Warner; R1 BUY from Amazon!
9. The Professional (Georges Lautner, 1981) Lions Gate; R1
BUY from Amazon!
10. Crack in the World (Andrew Marton, 1965) Olive Films; R1
BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: DVD, dead? Hardly. The market is obviously shifting away from retail and rental to online, DVD-Rs, sub-licensing, etc., but just look at this list - a beguiling mix of historically significant and cult television series, obscure and long unavailable features, a heretofore hard-to-see collection of two-reel comedies, and a pair of this reviewer's personal favorites of 2010. Long live DVD!
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
The Complete Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927) Kino; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
2.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Sound of Music (Robert Wise, 1965) Fox; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
4.
The Leopard, (Luchino Visconti, 1963) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
5.
Black Orpheus (Marcel Camus, 1959) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
6.
City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
7.
The Secret of the Grain (Abdel Kechiche, 2007) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
8.
Pandora and the Flying Dutchman (Albert Lewin, 1951) Kino; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
9.
Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
10.
White Christmas (Michael Curtiz, 1954) Paramount; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!

Comments: 2010 is the year that labels finally ramped-up their classic library titles, with gorgeous transfers of several big negative titles especially. Normally I'd limit Criterion to one or two titles in order to point to the good work of smaller boutique labels, but this year Criterion really did an outstanding job; indeed, few would object to an all-Criterion Top Ten. Both lists carefully considered not just the quality of the film and its transfer but also their use of the format's capabilities, the quality and extent of new extra features, and the thought and imagination that went into the entire package.
   


Jonathan Glover

Washington DC

USA

Top SD-DVD Releaaes:

1. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!

2. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!

 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
By Brakhage: An Anthology (Stan Brakhage, 1954-2001) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
2.
Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4. House (Nubuhiko Obayashi, 1977)
Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
5.
The Complete Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927) Kino; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
6.
Psycho (50th Anniversary Edition) (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) Universal; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
7.
Apocalypse Now (3-disc) (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Lionsgate; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
8.
Close-Up (Abbas Kiarostami, 1990) Criterion Collection; RA
BUY from Amazon!

 


Christiane Habich
Leipzig, Germany
Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1. Shadows Of Forgotten Ancestors (Sergei Parajanov, 1964) Artificial Eye R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
2. Sweetgrass (Ilisa Barabsh, Lucien Castaing-Taylor, 2009) Cinema Guild; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. There’s Always Tomorrow (Douglas Sirk, 1956) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
4. The Beaches of Agnes (Agnes Varda, 2008); Artificial Eye; R2, PAL BUY from Amazon!
5. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7. Cleo from 5 to 7 (Agnčs Varda, 1962); Artificial Eye; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
8. Das Fieber steigt in El Pao (Luis Bunuel, 1959); Kinowelt; R2, PAL BUY from Amazon!
9. La Signora Di Tutti (Max Ophuls, 1934) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
10. The Formative Years – Arsenal Edition (Heinz Emigholz, 1972-1975), Filmgalerie 451; R0 BUY from Amazon!
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
2.
Les Demoiselles de Rochefort (Jacques Demy, 1966) Arte; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Leopard, (Luchino Visconti, 1963) BFI RB BUY from Amazon!
4. Battleship Potemkin (Sergei Eisenstein, 1925); Kino International; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
5.
F.W. Murnau Boxset – Sunrise and City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1927 & 1930), Carlotta, R ALL BUY from Amazon!
6.
Stagecoach (John Ford, 1939) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
7.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
8. Belle de Jour (Luis Bunuel, 1967), Studio Canal; RB
BUY from Amazon! BUY from Amazon! BUY from Amazon!
9. 8 1/2 (Federico Fellini, 1963) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
10.Les Maudits (René Clement, 1947) Gaumont; Region B
BUY from Amazon!


David Hare

Sydney, Australia

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010
1. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon! R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. Lubitsch in Berlin (The Doll/The Oyster Princess/I Don't Want to be a Man/Sumurun/Anna Boleyn/The Wildcat) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
4. 35 Rhums (Claire Denis, 2008) Cinema Guild; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics II (Human Desire/ Pushover/ Nightfall/ The Brothers Rico/ City of Fear), Fritz Lang, Richard Quine, Phil Karlson, Jacques Tourneur, Irving Lerner, 1953-59, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. Film Noir Classics Collection 5 (Cornered, Deadline at Dawn, Desperate, Backfirem, Armored Car Robbery, Dial 1119, The Phenix City Story, Crime in the Streets) 45-56, Warner; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7. TCM Spotlight: Errol Flynn (Desperate Journey / Edge of Darkness 1943 / Northern Pursuit / Uncertain Glory / Objective Burma) Warner/TCM; R0 BUY from Amazon!
8. Film Socialisme (Jean-Luc Godard, 2010) Wild Side France; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
9. Chaplin at Keystone 1910s - BFI; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
10. Une Partie de Campagne (Jean Renoir, 1936) Madman; R4 PAL
 

Comments: The Rossellini and Sternberg boxes have been years coming, but it’s been more than worth the wait for such

beautiful restorations and lovingly crafted packaging and curatorship. My only regret is both these boxes weren’t also

released in Blu-ray. The superb Claire Denis 35 Rhums with regular performer Alex Descas is one of three films issued

this year on DVD and Blu all reflecting the themes of age and loss that begin with McCarey’s sublime

Make Way for Tomorrow and culminate in Ozu’s sublime Late Spring. 35 Rhums is Claire’s very worthy homage. The

Sony and Warner Noir boxes were both splendid and regrettably I think they signal the end of direct retail SD marketing of

this still undermined genre. Among real gems here Quine’s Pushover and Irving Lerner’s second feature with Vince Edwards,

City of Fear. The TCM Flynn box is effectively a Walsh at War box as well and the transfers and films themselves are glorious.

The Madman Une Partie de Campagne must be honored as the first English subbed port of the restored Gaumont print,

and it includes the extended extras footage from the shoot in a longer version than the BFI. It clearly now supersedes the

BFI which was also cropped and quite ragged in comparison.


Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
French Cancan (Jean Renoir, 1955) Gaumont; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
2.
Stagecoach (John Ford, 1939) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4. Ozu:
Late Spring; Early Summer, Tokyo Story BFI; RB BUY from Amazon! BUY from Amazon! BUY from Amazon!
5.
City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
6.
A Single Man (Tom Ford, 2009) Sony RA BUY from Amazon!
7.
Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey 1937), Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
8.
A Star is Born (George Cukor, 1954) Warner; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
9. The Leopard, (Luchino Visconti, 1963) BFI RB BUY from Amazon!
10.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: Cancan must now overtake even the superb restoration of Red Shoes from 2008 as the most astonishing

rendering of Technicolor ever on home video. The restoration confirms my wildest dreams that with digital tools original IB Technicolor three strip can literally be revived from the dead.


Criterion’s Stagecoach shows real guts in the sense that the print is uneven but is the best available, and Warner took the

plunge with these elements. Film grain, tramlines, gate hairs and everything else that goes with real living 35mm film. And it’s

a masterpiece of course. The BFI Ozus also represent the apex of home vid presentation for these great films, even despite –

again – the lack of an O-Neg or even first gen positives for Tokyo Story. City Girl is the obverse – a flawless, unhampered rendering of a near pristine 35mm source by the folks at MoC who wisely adopt the minimal interference strategy with such

gorgeous sources. I find myself always choosing their version over the US – viz. Metropolis or M - because their commitment

to minimal manipulation preserves the film image far more faithfully. I wanted to mention the Tom Ford movie of Isherwood’s

great novel, not so much for its qualities as a Blu-ray but for the film itself, a remarkably assured, powerfully expressive, and profoundly felt first film from Ford about loss (again!), love, the closet, friendship and a magnificently lyrical formal expression

of zen-like awakening to life. It just seems to have passed under the radar, especially in the USA where the sheer formal and

visual immersion in tactile beauty, and even Colin Firth’s fantastic performance seems to provoke some sort of outraged neo

puritan reaction that labels the film as shallow, when nothing could be further from the truth.


Peter Hoskin

The Spectator, www.spectator.co.uk

London, UK

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!  
2. The Frantisek Vlacil Collection - (Frantisek Vlacil 67-70) Second Run; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
3. Shadows of Progress (Anderson, Brenton, Krish et al, 1951-1977) BFI; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
4. The Queen of Spades (Thorold Dickinson, 1949) Optimum Home Entertainment; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
5. Elia Kazan Collection (Elia, Kazan, 1945-1963) 20th Century Fox; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. Film Noir Classics Collection 5 (Cornered, Deadline at Dawn, Desperate, Backfirem, Armored Car Robbery, Dial 1119, The Phenix City Story, Crime in the Streets) 45-56, Warner; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
8. Presenting Sacha Guitry (The Story of a Cheat, The Pearls of the Crown, Desire and Quadrille - Sacha Guitry, 1936-1938) Eclipse; R1 BUY from Amazon!
9. Matinee (Joe Dante, 1993) Universal; R1 BUY from Amazon!
10. The Last Wagon (Delmer Daves, 1956) Optimum Home Entertainment; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!

Comments: A cheat’s list, stuffed with multi-film box sets. But, then again, I could barely ignore the good value of Second Run’s Frantisek Vlacil Collection, nor the Elia Kazan Collection which contains his masterpiece, Wild River. Aside from that, it’s been a good one for Criterion. The Guitry set was probably the discovery of the year for me. And the von Sternbergs are my favourite release in any format.

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
2.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; R B BUY from Amazon!
3.
Fantasia (Luske, Sharpsteen et al, 1940) Walt Disney; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
4.
M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Masters of Cinema; R B BUY from Amazon!
5.
City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
6.
Mad Men: Season 3 (Weiner, Abraham et al, 2009) Lionsgate; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
7.
America Lost & Found-BBS Story Collection (Head, Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Drive, He Said, A Safe Place, The Last Picture Show, The King of Marvin Gardens) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
8.
By Brakhage: An Anthology (Stan Brakhage, 1954-2001) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
9.
Les Vacances de M. Hulot (Jacques Tati, 1953) BFI; R B BUY from Amazon!
10.
The War of the Worlds (Steven Spielberg, 2005) Paramount; R ALL BUY from Amazon!

Comments: Many of the Blu-rays on this list are, to these eyes and ears, among the finest home video packages ever released. The Night of the Hunter, M, Metropolis, Fantasia – this is what can happen when classic cinema meets blue laser. Special praise must be reserved for Masters of Cinema, who are surpassing just about everyone else when it comes to putting out older films in Hi-Def. A pity that I couldn’t find space for their Make Way for Tomorrow, nor the BFI’s Edge of the World. I was also tempted to include the Region B release of Adventureland, one of most surprising and kaleidoscopic comedies of the last decade.


Bruce Kimmel
California
Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

Comments: I have to say, with only a few exceptions, I stopped buying DVDs. I’ve simply been spoiled and other than a couple of rarer Lang titles, and stuff like that, I don’t think I bought more than six DVDs.


Top Blu-ray Releases
1. Les Yeux Sans Visage Georges Franju, Gaumont, R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
2. Peeping Tom Michael Powell, Optimum; R B
BUY from Amazon!
3.
City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
4.
French Cancan (Jean Renoir, 1955) Gaumont; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
5.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
6.
White Christmas (Michael Curtiz, 1954) Paramount; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
7.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
8.
Les Demoiselles de Rochefort (Jacques Demy, 1966) Arte; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
9. The Ghost Writer Roman Polanski, Summit, R A
BUY from Amazon!
10. Inception Christopher Nolan, Warner Bros., R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: A great year for classics on blu-ray. Those of us who were berating the studios last year and loudly proclaiming that, like DVD, until they got off their behind’s and went to catalog the format would never take off – this year they heeded the call and guess what – the format took off. I could have listed ten more films easily, but my list contains transfers that I thought were a) astonishing, and b) improved drastically on what’s been available before. Several on my list took my breath away, especially as I’d given up hope on several titles of ever seeing them look as they should. I included Inception on the list even though I don’t really care for it as a film – but the transfer is reference quality and fantastic. No matter what some “experts” said, the White Christmas transfer is utterly fantastic and a perfect representation of what IB Technicolor looked like back in the 1950s – glorious and the sharpest transfer of a Vista Vision film ever done. The same goes for French Can Can. And to finally have Les Demoiselles de Rochefort restored by people who actually know what they’re doing (rather than Ms. Varda, who did the awful previous “restoration”) is a miracle – so great to finally see Mr. Demy’s classic looking shiny and sharp and colorful and like it was shot yesterday.


Adam Lampe

Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases of 2010
1.
Two Films by Yasujiro Ozu (The Only Son, There Was a Father) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2.
Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3.
La Signora Di Tutti (Max Ophuls, 1934) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
4.
3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. Chicago - The Original 1927 Film Restored (Frank Urson, 1927) Flicker Alley; R0
BUY from Amazon!
7. Monte Walsh (William A. Fraker, 1970) Paramount; R1
BUY from Amazon!
8. The Italian Straw Hat (René Clair, 1928) Flicker Alley; R0
BUY from Amazon!
9.
Lubitsch in Berlin (The Doll/The Oyster Princess/I Don't Want to be a Man/Sumurun/Anna Boleyn/The Wildcat) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
10. The Kim Novak Film Collection (Bell, Book and Candle / Middle of the Night / Jeanne Eagels / Picnic / Pal Joey) Sony; R1
BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: Criterion’s release schedule was broad and varied in both Blu-ray and DVD this year. All of their Eclipse sets are still only available on DVD which, this year, also included Eclipse Series 20: George Bernard Shaw on Film, the brilliant Presenting Sacha Guitry and The First Films of Akira Kurosawa. Flicker Alley is a smaller firm specialising in quality DVD releases of silent films, which this year included the beautifully compiled Chaplin at Keystone: An International Collaboration of 34 Original Films and Georges Melies Encore: 26 Additional Rare and Original Films by the First Wizard of Cinema by the First Wizard of Cinema (1896-1911). Their entire small but exceptional catalogue is highly recommended. Sony’s Kim Novak set helped me appreciate a uniquely ethereal film presence. Even in her ‘naturalistic’ performances, like ‘Middle of the Night’, she seems dreamy or lost. It’s not hard to understand why the men played by James Stewart, William Holden and Frederic March obsessed over her.
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
2. The African Queen (John Huston, 1951) Paramount; R ALL  BUY from Amazon!
3. Vivre sa vie (Jean-Luc Godard, 1962) Criterion R'A'  BUY from Amazon!
4.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
5.
America Lost & Found-BBS Story Collection (Head, Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Drive, He Said, A Safe Place, The Last Picture Show, The King of Marvin Gardens) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
6. Inception Christopher Nolan, Warner Bros., R ALL BUY from Amazon!
7.
Paths of Glory (Stanley Kubrick, 1957) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
8.
The Magician (Ingmar Bergman, 1958), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
9.
Toy Story 3 (Lee Unkrich, 2010) Disney; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
10.
Walkabout (Nicolas Roeg, 1971) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!

 


Lynn Lascaro
Long Beach, California
U.S.A.

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases of 2010
1. Thriller - The Complete Series (various, 1960-62) Image; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. Summer and Smoke (Peter Glenville, 1961) Olive Films; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. Fantomas: Five Film Collection (Louis Feuillade, 1913-14) Kino; R1 BUY from Amazon!
4. Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics II (Human Desire/ Pushover/ Nightfall/ The Brothers Rico/ City of Fear), Fritz Lang, Richard Quine, Phil Karlson, Jacques Tourneur, Irving Lerner, 1953-59, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. Madam Satan (Cecil B. Demille, 1930) WB Archives; R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
6. Chaplin at Keystone (Various directors, 1914) Flicker Alley; R0 BUY from Amazon!
7. Fog Over Frisco (William Dieterle, 1934) WB Archives; R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
8. Plymouth Adventure (Clarence Brown, 1952) WB Archives; R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
9. Appointment With Danger (Lewis Allen, 1951) Olive Films; R1 BUY from Amazon!
10. The Cyclops ( Bert I.Gordon, 1957) WB Archives; R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: This year I discovered a use for double sided discs, Look at your reflection and pretend that ‘you’ are in the movie.


Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
The Ghost Writer Roman Polanski, Summit, R A BUY from Amazon!.
2.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3.
Paths of Glory (Stanley Kubrick, 1957) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4. Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (Oshima Nagisa, 1983) Criterion; R A
BUY from Amazon!
5.
Fantastic Mr. Fox (Wes Anderson, 2009) 20th Century Fox; R A BUY from Amazon!
6. To Live and Die in LA (William Friedkin, 1985} MGM; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
7. The Double Life of Veronique (Krzysztof Kieslowski, 1991) Artificial Eye; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
8. Spirits of the Dead (Roger Vadim, Louis Malle, Fedrico Fellini, 1968) Arrow Video; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
9. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Niels Arden Opley,2010, Music Box Films; RA
BUY from Amazon!
10. Battle Royale (Limited Edition) (Kinji Fukasaku, 2000) Arrow Video: R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: There are many lists; but this is my list. It’s not perfect; but these rang my bells. Some favorites were presented in a way I wouldn’t crow about; and I had to leave out some incredible films that I knew others would mention (Like Cronos and Metropolis). This is hard work ...puff puff.


Adam Lemke www.moviemiser.com

Syracuse, NY, USA

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases of 2010

1. Everyone Else (Maren Ade, 2009) Cinema Guild; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. Love Exposure (Sion Sono, 2008) Third Window; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
3. My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done (Werner Herzog, 2009) First Look; R1 BUY from Amazon!
4. Brewster McCloud (Robert Altman, 1970) WB Archives; R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
5. Letters from Fontainhas: Three Films by Pedro Costa (Ossos, In Vanda’s Room, Colossal Youth, Pedro Costa, 1997/2000/2006) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7. Beeswax (Andrew Bujalski, 2009) Cinema Gulid; R1 BUY from Amazon!
8. Presenting Sacha Guitry (The Story of a Cheat, The Pearls of the Crown, Desire and Quadrille - Sacha Guitry, 1936-1938) Eclipse; R1 BUY from Amazon!
9. The Green Slime (Kinji Fukasaku, 1968) Warner Archive - R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
10. Lovely Rita (Jessica Hausner, 2001) Artificial Eye; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!

Blu-Ray
1.
Modern Times (Charlie Chaplin, 1936) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
2.
The African Queen (John Huston, 1951) Paramount; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
3. Exit Through the Gift Shop (Banksy, 2010) Revolver; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
4.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
5. The Loved Ones (Sean Byrne, 2009) Optimum; R B
BUY from Amazon!
6.
M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Criterion; R'A' BUY from Amazon!
7. Revanche (Götz Spielmann, 2008) Criterion; R A
BUY from Amazon!
8. Inferno (Dario Argento, 1980) Arrow; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
9. Valhalla Rising (Nicolas Winding Refn, 2009) Momentum; R B
BUY from Amazon!
10. Yatterman (Takashi Miike, 2009) Panorama; R ALL
BUY from YesAsia!
 

Comments: So many wonderful boxsets awaiting viewing, stacks of bizarre genre stuff overlooked in favor of stronger films – this list could have been 50 titles in each category. SD DVD has become the minor leagues where Labels are releasing riskier titles that will hopefully one day graduate to Blu-ray. Having just become a father, I expect a lot more home viewing in my future, which based on 2010, is not exactly a bad thing.


Tom Mahaffey

Troy, Michigan, USA

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010
1. Lubitsch in Berlin (The Doll/The Oyster Princess/I Don't Want to be a Man/Sumurun/Anna Boleyn/The Wildcat) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
2. There’s Always Tomorrow (Douglas Sirk, 1956) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
3. A Nos Amours (Maurice Pailet, 1983) Mastersa of Cinema; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
4.
3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. Elia Kazan Collection (Elia, Kazan, 1945-1963) 20th Century Fox; R1
BUY from Amazon!
6. Madam Satan (Cecil B. Demille, 1930) WB Archives; R0 Click to access Warner Archive
BUY from Amazon!
7. La Signora Di Tutti (Max Ophuls, 1934) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
8. Henri-Georges Clouzot’s Inferno (Henri-Georges Clouzot, 1964) Park Circus; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
9. Peacock (Michael Lander, 2010) Lion’s Gate; R1
BUY from Amazon!
10. Lorna’s Silence (Dardenne Brothers, 2008) Sony; R1
BUY from Amazon!
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Lourdes (Jessica Hausner, 2009) RB Artificial Eye
; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
2.
The Red Shoes (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 1948) Criterion RA BUY from Amazon!
3. Paranoiac (Freddie Francis, 1963) Eureka Video; RB
BUY from Amazon!
4. Antichrist (Lars Von Trier, 2009) Artificial Eye RB
BUY from Amazon!
5.
Psycho (50th Anniversary Edition) (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) Universal; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
6.
America Lost & Found-BBS Story Collection (Head, Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Drive, He Said, A Safe Place, The Last Picture Show, The King of Marvin Gardens) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
7. A Serious Man (Coen Brothers, 2009) Universal RA
BUY from Amazon!
8.
Revanche (Götz Spielmann, 2008) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
9..
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
10.
City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
 


Gregory, Meshman

Atlanta, GA USA

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010
1.
3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2.
Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3.
Chaplin at Keystone (Various directors, 1914) Flicker Alley; R0 BUY from Amazon!
4.
Film Noir Classics Collection 5 (Cornered, Deadline at Dawn, Desperate, Backfirem, Armored Car Robbery, Dial 1119, The Phenix City Story, Crime in the Streets) 45-56, Warner; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5.
Icons of Suspense Collection: Hammer Films (Stop Me Before I Kill/Cash on Demand/ Never Take Candy from a Stranger/ The Snorkel/ The Damned), 1957-1962, Sony R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. Kino Academia editions:
Engineer Prite's Project (Lev Kuleshov, 1918) Ruscico, ALL PAL
The Great Consoler (Lev Kuleshov 1933) HYPERKINO/Ruscicio; R0 PAL
Happiness (Aleksandr Medvedkin, 1935) Ruscico, ALL PAL
7.
Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics II (Human Desire/ Pushover/ Nightfall/ The Brothers Rico/ City of Fear), Fritz Lang, Richard Quine, Phil Karlson, Jacques Tourneur, Irving Lerner, 1953-59, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
8. Diamonds Of The Night (Jan Nemec, 1964) Second Run
; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
9. Deanna Durbin: The Music and Romance Collection (various, 1938-1948) Universal, R1
10. Stranger on the Third Floor (Boris Ingster, 1940)
Warner Archive; R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
2.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Red Shoes (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 1948) Criterion RA BUY from Amazon!
4.
Black Narcissus (Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1947) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
5.
Psycho (50th Anniversary Edition) (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) Universal; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
6.
Apocalypse Now (3-disc) (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Lionsgate; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
7.
The Maltese Falcon (John Huston, 1941) Warner Home Video,
R ALL BUY from Amazon!
8.
Stagecoach (John Ford, 1939) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
9.
The African Queen (John Huston, 1951) Paramount; R ALL  BUY from Amazon!
10.
Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey 1937), Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!


Brian Montgomery
Missouri, USA
Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1.
Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. Agnes Varda Collection, Vol. 2 (Agnes Varda, 1977-2008) Artificial Eye; R 0 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
3. Dillinger is Dead (Marco Ferreri, 1969) Criterion; R1
BUY from Amazon!
4. Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5a. COI Collection, Vols. 1 (Various) BFI; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
5b. COI Collection, Vols. 2 (Various) BFI
; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
5c. COI Collection, Vols. 3 (Various) BFI
; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
6. Louie Bluie (Terry Zwigoff, 1985)
Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7. Bodysong (Simon Pummell, 2003)
BFI; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
8. Father of My Children (Mia Hansen-Lřve, 2009) Artificial Eye; R0 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
9.
Two Films by Yasujiro Ozu (The Only Son, There Was a Father) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
10. The Fugitive Kind (Sidney Lumet, 1960)
Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: Unfortunately I missed out on many, many of the big name releases this year, as I’ve been too busy with school (the reason for my Beaver hiatus as well) to catch up on them all. While I know that there are a lot of great releases out there, especially in the last few months, I just haven’t gotten to them yet.
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
2.
The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke, 2009) Artificial Eye; R B BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Magician (Ingmar Bergman, 1958), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4.
Katyn (Andrzej Wajda, 2007) Artificial Eye; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
5.
Antichrist (Lars Von Trier, 2009) Artificial Eye RB BUY from Amazon!
6.
Steamboat Bill Jr. (Charles Reisner & Buster Keaton 1928) Kino; RA BUY from Amazon!
7.
The Double Life of Veronique (Krzysztof Kieslowski, 1991) Artificial Eye; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
8.
House (Nubuhiko Obayashi, 1977) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
9.
Privilege (Peter Watkins, 1967) BFI; R B BUY from Amazon!
10. Loving Memory (Tony Scott, 1969) BFI; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
 


John Nelson
Frederick, MD, USA
Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1. Lubitsch in Berlin (The Doll/The Oyster Princess/I Don't Want to be a Man/Sumurun/Anna Boleyn/The Wildcat) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
2. The Frantisek Vlacil Collection - (Frantisek Vlacil 67-70) Second Run; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
3. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
4. The Clouded Yellow (Ralph Thomas, 1950) Eureka; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
5. Letters from Fontainhas: Three Films by Pedro Costa (Ossos, In Vanda’s Room, Colossal Youth, Pedro Costa, 1997/2000/2006) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. The Italian Straw Hat (René Clair, 1928) Flicker Alley; R0 BUY from Amazon!
7. Kapo (Gillo Pontecorvo, 1959) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
8. Shirin (Abbas Kiarostami, 2009) Cinema Guild; R1 BUY from Amazon!
9. Presenting Sacha Guitry (The Story of a Cheat, The Pearls of the Crown, Desire and Quadrille - Sacha Guitry, 1936-1938) Eclipse; R1 BUY from Amazon!
10. The Maid (Sebastián Silva, 2009) Artificial Eye; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1. Revanche (Götz Spielmann, 2008) Criterion; R A
BUY from Amazon!
2.
Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey 1937), Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
3. The Secret in Their Eyes (Juan José Campanella, 2009) Sony RA
BUY from Amazon!
4. Charade (Stanley Donen, 1963) - Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
5. Delicatessen (Marc Caro + Jean-Pierre Jeunet, 1991) Lionsgate; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
6. Breathless (Jean-Luc Godard, 1960) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
7.
Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
8.
The Sound of Music (Robert Wise, 1965) Fox; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
9. Winter’s Bone (Debra Granik, 2010) Roadside Attractions; RA
BUY from Amazon!
10.
America Lost & Found-BBS Story Collection (Head, Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Drive, He Said, A Safe Place, The Last Picture Show, The King of Marvin Gardens) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: Narrowing down only to 10 titles has forced me not to include several that deserve to be mentioned here, including, for example, Paths of Glory, Katyń, Red Desert, The African Queen, etc..


Peter Neski
New York, NY

SD DVD
1. Sgt. Bilko: The Phil Silvers Show - First Season 1955,Paramount; R1
2. Agatha (Michael Apted, 1979) Warner Archive; R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Apocalypse Now (3-disc) (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Lionsgate; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
2. Red Desert (Michelangelo Antonioni, 1964) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
3.
Days Of Heaven (Terrence Malick 1978) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4. Man with No Name Trilogy (A Fistful of Dollars For a Few Dollars More, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly) Sergio Leone  MGM
; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
5. Sherlock Jr. / Three Ages 1924, Buster Keaton Kino; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
6. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (David hand, 1937) Disney; R A
BUY from Amazon!
7.
The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick, 1998) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
8.
M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Criterion; R'A' BUY from Amazon!
9. Modern Times (Charlie Chaplin, 1936) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
 


Leonard Norwitz

San Jose, CA

Top Blu-ray Releases

1. Apocalypse Now (3-disc) (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Lionsgate; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
2.
Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3.
Toy Story 3 (Lee Unkrich, 2010) Disney; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
4.
Downton Abbey (Julian Fellowes, 2010) Universal International; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
5. Deadwood (Created by David Milch, 2004-06); HBO; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
6.
The Red Shoes (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 1948) Criterion RA BUY from Amazon!
7.
The Sound of Music (Robert Wise, 1965) Fox; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
8. The Story of India (Michael Wood, 2010) BBC 2|entertain; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
9.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; R B BUY from Amazon!
10.
The Magician (Ingmar Bergman, 1958), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!

 

Honorable Mention:
Mulholland Drive (David Lynch, 2001) RB Optimum; RB BUY from Amazon!

Comments:
2010 was the year that Blu-ray came into its own, as evidenced by the dramatic increase in classic and silent films to appear in the format. While Internet streaming seems poised to wipe hard copies off the map, we BR collectors continue to enjoy the best of the best: image, sound, features. (If only they had cases to match.) Several of my most desired titles made their appearance in 2010 and four of those are on my list in outstanding transfers.

The titles that make my Top Ten List score high marks in most every category - but also have that extra something: a charisma that charms, seduces, astonishes. In this,
Apocalypse Now takes pride of place. It’s a transfer in image and sound that brings back the emotional memory when I first saw it in its opening week. Likewise for The Red Shoes, which I saw it in a nitrate print some 20 years ago: the ballet portion of is amazing on many levels, and my preferred demo piece as well. The Criterion transfer needs no apologies.

Toy Story 3 was, to just about everyone’s surprise, the best of Pixar’s trilogy, and it looks and sounds sensational on Blu-ray. Deadwood - all three seasons - is now available in high def looking and sounding as good as can be, and housed in a single clever box that takes less space than a single DVD season. Neither of these titles nor Criterion’s Seven Samurai need further comment to recommend them.

If you’ve a fondness for British Upstairs Downstairs settings, then you won’t want to miss Julian Fellowes’
Downton Abbey with a huge cast of English regulars including Hugh Bonneville, Jim Carter, Penelope Wilton, Brendan Coyle and, let’s see, someone named Maggie Smith, and an American, Elizabeth McGovern. Fellowes wrote Gosford Park, by the way, and Downton Abbey feels very much its natural extension into a TV series. The present Blu-ray does the first season proud: wardrobe, lighting, locations: jaws will drop, mouths will water. As for fidelity to period and depth of the play, think Downton Abbey and Mad Men - and leave it at that.

The Story of India with the impassioned Michael Wood, is another stunningly filmed documentary made for the BBC. It might also be called the “Story of Mankind” as Wood attempts to connect the dots of our species’ diaspora from Africa through India with archeological, genetic and linguistic evidence and contemporary practice - and that’s just the first of its six hours.

If
The Sound of Music can look this good, I can’t wait for The King and I, whose source print is, I believe, in even better shape. I thought the black levels a trifle high, so what I found here was a new and different and altogether satisfying home theatre experience. Finally, there’s Masters of Cinema’s Metropolis 2010 Restoration, perhaps not the most persuasive of “silent” film images thus far on Blu-ray (City Girl, perhaps, or Modern Times, but it is, along with Sunrise, the most important. Strange as it is, Bergman’s The Magician on Criterion is too tangible and luminous not to find a place on the list.
 


George Papamargaritis

UK, Greece

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010
1. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. The Frantisek Vlacil Collection - (Frantisek Vlacil 67-70) Second Run; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
4. The Law (La Loi) (Jules Dassin, 1959) Oscilloscope; R0 BUY from Amazon!
5. Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. Chaplin at Keystone 1910s - BFI; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
7. The Quintessential Guy Maddin! (Archangel, Careful, Twilight of the Ice Nymphs, Dracula: Pages from a Virgin's Diary, and Cowards Bend the Knee) Zeitgeist; R1 BUY from Amazon!
8. The Beekeeper (Theo Angelopoulos, 1986) Artificial Eye; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
9. Lee Man Hee Collection (The Marines Who Never Returned, Black Hair, A Day Off, Assassin) - Korean Federation of Film Archives; R0 BUY from YesAsia!
10.Von morgensbismitternachts (Karl Heinz Martin, 1920) Edition Filmmuseum; R2 BUY from Amazon!

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
2.
Tokyo Story (Yasujiro Ozu, 1953) BFI; RB BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick, 1998) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4.
Profound Desires of the Gods (Shhei Imamura, 1968) MoC; RB BUY from Amazon!
5.
The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke, 2009) Artificial Eye; R B BUY from Amazon!
6.
Bigger Than Life (Nicholas Ray, 1956) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
7.
Modern Times (Charlie Chaplin, 1936) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
8.
Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey 1937), Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
9. Picnic At Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, 1975) Second Sight; RB
BUY from Amazon!
10.
Privilege (Peter Watkins, 1967) BFI; RB BUY from Amazon!

 


Luc Pomerleau

Gatineau, Québec, Canada

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010
1.
3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2.
Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. La Signora Di Tutti (Max Ophuls, 1934) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
4.
The Italian Straw Hat (René Clair, 1928) Flicker Alley; R0 BUY from Amazon!
5.
The Queen of Spades (Thorold Dickinson, 1949) Optimum Home Entertainment; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
6.
Two Films by Yasujiro Ozu (The Only Son, There Was a Father) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7. Wild Grass (Alain Resnais, 2009) Sony; R1
BUY from Amazon!
8. Masque of the Mandragora (Doctor Who episode directed by Rodney Bennett, 1976) Warner
; R1 BUY from Amazon!
9. Alice in Wonderland (Norman Z. McLeod, 1933) Universal Studios
; R0 BUY from Amazon!
10.
Icons of Suspense Collection: Hammer Films (Stop Me Before I Kill/Cash on Demand/ Never Take Candy from a Stranger/ The Snorkel/ The Damned), 1957-1962, Sony R1 BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: Great to rediscover von Sternberg outside of his Dietrich phase, in such sterling transfers. Will anyone think of issuing a boxset of other early Ophuls like Liebelei (Eclipse perhaps?). Clair's film seem to me an even more enjoyable romp than the most celebrated Le Million, just as Resnais brings us a breath of cinematic fresh air well while into his 80s. Nice to finally be able to savor Anton Walbrook and Edith Evans in a satisfying edition of the cult Queen of Spades. Are there other neglected Ozu masterpieces like the beautiful There Was a Father left to be discovered in R1? Mc Leod's Alice is more of a curiosity, an assemblage of hits and misses, but indispensable for any Lewis Carroll fan. Masque of the Mandragora is a truly enjoyable DW pseudo-historical from the Tom Baker era, before the star became uncontrollable and unwatchable. The Hammer set finally brings back Joseph Losey's only foray into science-fiction.
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Lola Montčs (Max Ophuls, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
2.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
4.
The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke, 2009) Sony; R A BUY from Amazon!
5.
M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Masters of Cinema; R B BUY from Amazon!
6.
City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
7.
Legend of the Black Scorpion (Xiaogang Feng, 2006) Weinstein
; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
8.
Paths of Glory (Stanley Kubrick, 1957) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
9.
The Magician (Ingmar Bergman, 1958), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
10.
Black Narcissus /The Red Shoes (Michael Powell + Emeric Pressburger, 1947/1948) Criterion Collection; RA
 

Comments: Lola Montčs is dramatically flawed, but its visual splendor finds the perfect setting in 1080P. Two titles by Lang; M is the superior film, but the near-complete Metropolis is a true event, and the newly-found footage, while not totally redeeming some of the hackneyed elements, does make it a more satisfying experience than before. I'm usually not a fan of Asian fight movies, but Black Scorpion is visually magnificent and the script seemed more rewarding than in other similar fare. Nice to see a mainstream company like Sony giving such a lavish treatment to Hanneke's not-so-mainstream film. Night of the Hunter was almost worth buying solely for the footage of Laughton directing. Impossible to choose between the two Technicolor extravaganzas by Powell-Pressburger; campy and dated at times, but wonderful cinema. Bergman's Magician may well end up being one of my favorite titles from him, considering how all the technical and artistic components come together so effectively, just as in Kubrick's, an atypically affecting and emotionally crushing work from the director. The America Lost & Found boxset from Criterion did not make my list because it would deserve a category of its own considering the abundance of meaningful titles and relevant extras I have only barely started to sample.


Jonathan Rosenbaum

Chicago, Illinois, USA

Top SD-DVD 2010
1. Earth (Alexander Dovzhenko, 1930), Mr. Bongo; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
2. Georges Melies Encore: 26 Additional Rare and Original Films by the First Wizard of Cinema (Georges Melies et al., 1896-1911), Flicker Alley; R1
BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Great Consoler (Lev Kuleshov 1933) HYPERKINO/Ruscicio; R0 PAL
4. Martin, El Gaucho/Way of a Gaucho (Jacques Tourneur, 1952),20TH Century-Fox/Impulse (Spain), #2, PAL
5. Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey, 1937) Criterion; R1
BUY from Amazon!
6. They’re a Weird Mob (Michael Powell, 1966), Roadshow Entertainment (Australia); R4 PAL
7. How to Live in the German Federal Republic (Harun Faroki, 1990), Facets Video
; R0 BUY from Amazon!
8. Die Stille vor Bach (Pere Portabella, 2007), Sherlock (Spain) PAL
9. * People on Sunday (several directors, 1930), BFI; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
10.
The Italian Straw Hat (René Clair, 1928) Flicker Alley; R0 BUY from Amazon!
 

* Note included in poll tallies as it did not come out in 2010

 

Comments: The most outstanding region 1 box sets: 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg, Presenting Sacha Guitry (Eclipse), & Douglas Sirk Filmmaker Collection (Universal)
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Battleship Potemkin (Sergei Eisenstein, 1925); Kino International; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
2.
The World (Jia Zhang-ke, 2004) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Leopard, (Luchino Visconti, 1963) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4. Une femme mariée (Jean-Luc Godard. 1964), Masters of Cinema; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
5.
Lola Montes (Max Ophuls, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
6.
Sherlock Jr. / Three Ages 1924, Buster Keaton Kino; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
7.
M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
8.
Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? (Frank Tashlin, 1957) Masters of Cinema/Eureka, RB BUY from Amazon!
9.
Bigger Than Life (Nicholas Ray, 1956) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
10.
Paris, Texas (Wim Wenders, 1984) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: The most outstanding Blu-Ray box set (by far): By Brakhage: An Anthology - volumes 1 + 2


Bill Routt

Balwyn, Victoria, Australia

 

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1. Sammy Going South (Alexander Mackendrick, 1963) Optimum; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
2. Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey, 1937) Criterion; R1
BUY from Amazon!
3. You and Me [Du und Ich] (Fritz Lang, 1938) Koch Media GmbH
; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
4.
3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5.
Film Noir Classics Collection 5 (Cornered, Deadline at Dawn, Desperate, Backfirem, Armored Car Robbery, Dial 1119, The Phenix City Story, Crime in the Streets) 45-56, Warner; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. Sherlock (various, 2010), BBC; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
7. From Morn to Midnight (Karlheinz Martin, 1920), Edition Filmmuseum; R0 (PAL)
8. Hausu (Nobuhiko Obayashi, 1977), Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
9. Georges Melies Encore: 26 Additional Rare and Original Films by the First Wizard of Cinema (Georges Melies et al., 1896-1911), Flicker Alley; R1
BUY from Amazon!
10. Bad Girls of Film Noir, Vol. 2 (various, 1946-1956), Sony; R1
BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: Titles listed in approximate order of my positive feelings about having them. Sammy Going South (Alexander Mackendrick, 1963) is first because I have wanted to see it for such a long time and because it was a real revelation in such a fine edition. Make Way for Tomorrow, Sherlock and Hausu are on this list because the editions I purchased do not yet have a direct Blu counterpart.
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
2. Summer Hours (Olivier Assayas, 2008),
Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3.
Stagecoach (John Ford, 1939) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4. Red Cliff, Part I & Part II - Special Edition (John Woo, 2008), Icon Home Entertainment; RB (AU)
6.
Fantastic Mr. Fox (Wes Anderson, 2009) 20th Century Fox; R A BUY from Amazon!
7.
Fantasia (Luske, Sharpsteen et al, 1940) Walt Disney; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
8. The Hurt Locker (Kathryn Bigelow, 2008), Summit Entertainment; RA
BUY from Amazon!
9. The Railway Children (Lionel Jeffries, 1970), Optimum; RB
BUY from Amazon!
10. Arn: The Knight Templar (Peter Flinth, 2007), Eagle; RB (AU)
 

Comments: List order is, as for DVDs, an order approximating my pleasure in having them.

 


Slant Magazine
Glenn Heath Jr.
www.slantmagazine.com
Top 10 SD-DVD Releases

1. The Actuality Dramas of Allan King (Warrendale / A Married Couple / Come on Children / Dying at Grace / Memory for Max, Claire, Ida and Company) - Allan King, 1967-2004 - Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey, 1937) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. Letters from Fontainhas: Three Films by Pedro Costa (Ossos, In Vanda’s Room, Colossal Youth, Pedro Costa, 1997/2000/2006) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
4. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. A Town Called Panic (Stephane Aubier, Vincent Patar, 2009) Zeitgeist Video; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. Eccentricities of a Blonde-Haired Girl (Manoel de Oliveira, 2009) Cinema Guild; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7. Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
8. Monte Walsh (William A. Fraker, 1970) Paramount; R1 BUY from Amazon!
9. Afterschool (Antonio Campos, 2008) MPI; R1 BUY from Amazon!
10. My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done (Werner Herzog, 2009) First Look; R1 BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: The most important release of the year introduced a wider audience to the essential humanist documentaries of Allan King. Indispensable.
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick, 1998) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
2.
Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3. Videodrome (David Cronenberg, 1983)
Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
5. Ride With the Devil (Ang Lee, 1999)
Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
6.
M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Criterion; R'A' BUY from Amazon!
7. The World (Jia Zhang-ke, 2004) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
8.
America Lost & Found-BBS Story Collection (Head, Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Drive, He Said, A Safe Place, The Last Picture Show, The King of Marvin Gardens) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
9.
Winter’s Bone (Debra Granik, 2010) Roadside Attractions; RA BUY from Amazon!
10. Last of the Mohicans (Michael Mann, 1992) Fox; RA
BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: Malick's masterpiece finally gets its due on Blu-ray.


Per-Olof Strandberg

Helsinki, Finland

Top SD-DVD Releases

1. * The Beekeeper (Theo Angelopoulos, 1986) Artificial Eye; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
2  * India Song (Marguerite Duras 1975) Atlantic Film R2 PAL
3. Chantal Akerman in the Seventies (Hôtel Monterey, Je, tu, il, elle, Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du commerce, 1080 Bruxelles, News from Home, Les rendez- vous d’Anna) Criterion; R1
BUY from Amazon!
4.
Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. Taking off (Milos Forman, 1971) Future Film; R2 PAL
6.
Film Noir Classics Collection 5 (Cornered, Deadline at Dawn, Desperate, Backfirem, Armored Car Robbery, Dial 1119, The Phenix City Story, Crime in the Streets) 45-56, Warner; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7.
Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
8.
3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: *Both transfers are quite poor, especially The Beekeeper transfer does not do justice to the film.
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
2.
Les Vacances de M. Hulot (Jacques Tati, 1953) BFI; RB BUY from Amazon!
3.
City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
4.
Lola Montes (Max Ophuls, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
5.
Walkabout (Nicolas Roeg, 1971) Criterion; RA
BUY from Amazon!
6.
Le Cercle Rouge (Jean-Pierre Melville, 1970) StudioCanal Collection – Optimum; RB BUY from Amazon!
7.
Man with No Name Trilogy (A Fistful of Dollars For a Few Dollars More, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly) Sergio Leone  MGM
; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
8.
Sex & Lucia (Julio Medem, 2001) Palm; RA
BUY from Amazon!
9.
The Graduate (Mike Nichols, 1967) StudioCanal; R A/B
BUY from Amazon!
10.Tous les Matins du Monde **) 1991 Alain Corneau Atlantic Film; R B

 

**) Interlaced transfer, but the film is excellent!
 

Comments: There's so many wonderful BD's this year: "M", the KINO Buster Keaton films, Dust in the Wind, The Leopard, Yojimbo. From France the Frank Borzage films, Renoir, Demy, Scola, Wajda, etc. The Swedish ATLANTIC FILM for two Peter Greenaway films in excellent quality.


Daniel Stuyck

Austin, TX, USA

1. Lubitsch in Berlin (The Doll/The Oyster Princess/I Don't Want to be a Man/Sumurun/Anna Boleyn/The Wildcat) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
2.
Chaplin at Keystone (Various directors, 1914) Flicker Alley; R0 BUY from Amazon!
3. Che (Steven Soderbergh, 2008) Criterion, R1
BUY from Amazon!
4.
Presenting Sacha Guitry (The Story of a Cheat, The Pearls of the Crown, Desire and Quadrille - Sacha Guitry, 1936-1938) Eclipse; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. The Alain Resnais Collection (I Want to Go Home, Melo, Love Unto Death Life is a Bed of Roses) Artificial Eye; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
6. The Portuguese Nun (Eugčne Green, 2009) Bodega Films; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
7.
Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
8. Afterschool (Antonio Campos, 2008) MPI; R1
BUY from Amazon!
9. 24 City (Jia Zhang-ke, 2008) Cinema Guild; R1
BUY from Amazon!
10. Carlos (aka "Carlos the Jackal: Complete") Optimum; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!


Mikkel Leffers Svendstrup

Editor, Uncut.dk

Denmark

Top SD-DVD Releases OF 2010
1. The Mercenary (Sergio Corbucci, 1968) Koch Media; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
2. Isolde (Jytte Rex, 1989) Another World Entertainment; R2 PAL
3. Cjamango (Edoardo Mulargia, 1967) Koch Media; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
4. Thompson 1880 (Guido Zurli, 1966) Koch Media; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
5. R (Michael Noer & Tobias Lindholm, 2010) Nordisk Film; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
6. Yatterman (Takeshi Miike, 2009) ) Another World Entertainment; R2 PAL
7. Katie Tippel (Paul Verhoeven, 1975) ) Another World Entertainment/Trinity Films; R2 PAL
8. Diary of a Hooke (Paul Verhoeven, 1971) ) Another World Entertainment/Trinity Films; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: 2010 has been the definitive “switch” year for me. I don’t buy DVD's anymore – unless it’s in the guilty pleasures category ☺ Off course there have been a couple of really exciting releases from Danish distributor Another World Entertainment and German spaghetti maestros Koch Media keeps on pushing the genre to DVD in great quality.
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1. Andrei Rublev (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1966) Moconabm (Russian); R ALL
2.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
3.
Django (Sergio Corbucci, 1966) Blue Underground; RA
BUY from Amazon!
4.
Alien Anthology (Scott, Fincher, Jeunet, 1979, 1986, 1992, 1997) SF Film/Fox; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
5.
The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke, 2009) Artificial Eye; R B BUY from Amazon!
6.
The Leopard, (Luchino Visconti, 1963) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon! 
7. Armadillo (Janus Metz, 2010) Nordisk Film; RB
8.
Stagecoach (John Ford, 1939) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
9.
Psycho (50th Anniversary Edition) (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) Universal; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
10.
Profound Desires of the Gods (Shhei Imamura, 1968) MoC; RB
BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: 2010 was a great year for Blu-ray. So many releases it’s almost impossible to nail down only 10. Other honorable mentions are: Paths of Glory (Stanley Kubrick, 1957) Criterion Collection; A, The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick, 1998) Criterion; RA, Seven (David Fincher, 1995) SF Film/New Line Cinema; ABC Martha (Erik Balling, 1967) Nordisk Film; B, Tokyo Story (Yasujiro Ozu, 1953) BFI; B City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Eureka/MoC; B Moon (Ducan jones, 2009) Altlantic; B, Olsen Banden (Erik Balling, 1968) Nordisk Film; B Sunrise (F.W. Murnau, 1927) MoC; B Back to the Future Trilogy (Robert Zemeckis, 1985, 1989, 1990) Universal; ABC

 


Gary Tooze

Toronto, Canada

 

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010
1) The Green Slime (Kinji Fukasaku, 1968) Warner Archive; R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
2) Kapo (Gillo Pontecorvo, 1959) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3) The Frantisek Vlacil Collection - (Frantisek Vlacil 67-70) Second Run; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
4) Appointment With Danger (Lewis Allen, 1951) Olive Films; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5) Two Films by Yasujiro Ozu (The Only Son, There Was a Father) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6) Bad Girls of Film Noir, Vol. 1 (Two of a Kind, The Killer That Stalked New York, Bad For Each Other, The Glass Wall) Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7) Icons of Suspense Collection: Hammer Films (Stop Me Before I Kill/Cash on Demand/ Never Take Candy from a Stranger/ The Snorkel/ The Damned), 1957-1962, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
8) Film Noir Classics Collection 5 (Cornered, Deadline at Dawn, Desperate, Backfirem, Armored Car Robbery, Dial 1119, The Phenix City Story, Crime in the Streets) 45-56, Warner; R1 BUY from Amazon!
9) Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
10) Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics II (Human Desire/ Pushover/ Nightfall/ The Brothers Rico/ City of Fear), Fritz Lang, Richard Quine, Phil Karlson, Jacques Tourneur, Irving Lerner, 1953-59, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: With classic Film Noir still largely ignored by the 1080P format - it frequently becomes the focus of my DVD enjoyment. Afterthoughts included La Loi, Warner Archive's A Stolen Life, Madam Satan, or Stranger on the Third Floor. Flicker Alley editions, like their wonderful Chaplin at Keystone, certainly deserved mention on my cramped list. I left off a number of excellent Criterion boxsets including 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg , Letters from Fontainhas and Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy feeling they would be more than adequately represented.

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
2.
Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
3.
Lucky Star (Frank Borzage, 1929) Carlotta; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
4.
M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Masters of Cinema; RB
5.
Black Narcissus (Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1947) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!

6. Fantastic Mr. Fox (Wes Anderson, 2009) 20th Century Fox; R A BUY from Amazon!
7.
America Lost & Found-BBS Story Collection (Head, Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Drive, He Said, A Safe Place, The Last Picture Show, The King of Marvin Gardens) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
8.
The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick, 1998) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
9.
Psycho (50th Anniversary Edition) (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) Universal; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
10.
City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: So many more I was forced to, unjustly, leave out like Studio Canal's Blu-ray of Melville's Le Cercle Rouge, The Maltese Falcon, Toy Story 3, Polanski The Ghost Writer, Miyazaki's Ponyo, Malick's Days Of Heaven, Powell and Pressburger's The Red Shoes, Edge of the World, Egoyan's Chloe, Nicholas Ray's Bigger Than Life, Tom Ford's masterful A Single Man, Chaplin's City Lights and Modern Times or even the Coen's A Serious Man (I thought this was great!). Engrossing TV like Breaking Bad was worthy of a mention. I've also been remiss in not including certain, very deserved, production companies like BFI and their Ozu's (Late Spring; Early Summer, Tokyo Story) and Blue Underground (like their Django or horror flicks)! I LOVE the direction Blu-ray is going with classic films being represented with rich grain and authentic film-like presentations. It just seems to be getting better.


Troy Weets

Fargo, North Dakota, USA

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1. The Frantisek Vlacil Collection - (Frantisek Vlacil 67-70) Second Run; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
2. The Island (Pavel Lungin, 2006) Artificial Eye; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
3. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
4. Night Train To Munich (Carol Reed, 1940) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. One Deadly Summer (Jean Becker, 1983) Bayview Entertainment; R 0 BUY from Amazon!
6. The Law (La Loi) (Jules Dassin, 1959) Oscilloscope; R0 BUY from Amazon!
7. Sous Le Soleil de Satan (Maurice Pialat, 1987) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
8. Three Films By Jean-Marie Straub and Daniele Huillet (1968/1998/2004) New Wave Films; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
9. The Beekeeper (Theo Angelopoulos, 1986) Artificial Eye; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
10. Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: For the second straight year, my DVD buying has plummeted. The one upside to this however, is that I have been able to pick up some truly extraordinary releases that could only come out deep into the lifespan of a format like DVD. I really enjoyed the Dassin, and look forward to more Angelopoulos. For anyone who has even a passing interest in foreign cinema, I can’t recommend the Vlacil collection more highly. That set contains two of my new favorite films, and a third, lesser masterpiece, as well as a great documentary, and at a steal of a price too. Second Run continues their incredible work with overlooked foreign cinema.
 

Top 10 Blu-ray Releases of 2010
1. Revanche (Götz Spielmann, 2008) Criterion; R A
BUY from Amazon!
2.
Privilege (Peter Watkins, 1967) BFI; R B BUY from Amazon!
3.
A Man Escaped (Robert Bresson, 1956) Gaumont; Region ALL BUY from Amazon!
4.
Paris, Texas (Wim Wenders, 1984) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
5a. A Zed And Two Noughts (Peter Greenaway, 1985) BFI; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
5b. The Baby Of Macon (Peter Greenaway, 1993) Atlantic Films; R ALL
6. Le Cercle Rouge (Jean-Pierre Melville, 1970) StudioCanal Collection – Optimum; RB
BUY from Amazon!
7. Katyn (Andrzej Wajda, 2007) Artificial Eye; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
8.
The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke, 2009) Artificial Eye; R B BUY from Amazon!
9.
Battleship Potemkin (Sergei Eisenstein, 1925); Kino International; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
10. Kelin (Ermek Tursunov, 2009) Emylia; R ALL
 

Comments: Wow, what a breakthrough year for Blu-ray. Revanche was a revelation, and has become a new favorite. Peter Watkins is one director who is criminally underrated, and even though Privilege may not be the most technically sound package, the film itself more than makes up for any shortcomings. Bresson, Melville, Wajda, and Wenders are a dream come true in 1080p as well. Through all of this however, I think that more people need to start seeing Peter Greenaway’s work. His films may not be to everyone’s taste, but there can be no doubt about his artistry. Also, everyone should do themselves a favor and check out Kelin. It is a unique, and immensely rewarding film that recalls the visual storytelling of some of the great silent films of yesteryear.


James White

Head of Technical, BFI (UK)

London, UK
Top 10 SD-DVD
1. World on a Wire (Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1973) Second Sight; R2
BUY from Amazon!
2.
Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics II (Human Desire/ Pushover/ Nightfall/ The Brothers Rico/ City of Fear), Fritz Lang, Richard Quine, Phil Karlson, Jacques Tourneur, Irving Lerner, 1953-59, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3.
3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
4. Diamonds Of The Night (Jan Nemec, 1964) Second Run
; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
5. Hotel Terminus: The Life and Times of Klaus Barbie (Marcel Ophuls, 1988) Icarus Films; Region 1
6.
Monte Walsh (William A. Fraker, 1970) Paramount; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7.
The Queen of Spades (Thorold Dickinson, 1949) Optimum Home Entertainment; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
8. Possession (Andrzej Zulawski, 1981) Second Sight; R2
BUY from Amazon!
9.
Brewster McCloud (Robert Altman, 1970) WB Archives; R0 Click to access Warner Archive BUY from Amazon!
10.
The Actuality Dramas of Allan King (Warrendale / A Married Couple / Come on Children / Dying at Grace / Memory for Max, Claire, Ida and Company) - Allan King, 1967-2004 - Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: Gentlemen's protocol forbids me from including BFI titles in my top ten, but I feel very proud to have contributed to "Shadows of Progress", our 4-disc collection of Post-war British documentaries, a true labour of love for all involved.
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
America Lost & Found-BBS Story Collection (Head, Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Drive, He Said, A Safe Place, The Last Picture Show, The King of Marvin Gardens) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
2.
M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Masters of Cinema; R B BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
4.
Fantasia (Luske, Sharpsteen et al, 1940) Walt Disney; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
5.
Profound Desires of the Gods (Shhei Imamura, 1968) MoC; RB BUY from Amazon!
6.
Apocalypse Now (3-disc) (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Lionsgate; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
7.
Le Cercle Rouge (Jean-Pierre Melville, 1970) StudioCanal Collection – Optimum; RB BUY from Amazon!
8.
Inferno (Dario Argento, 1980) Arrow; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
9.
Psycho (50th Anniversary Edition) (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) Universal; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
10.
The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick, 1998) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: A fantastic year for Blu-ray - it's very difficult to narrow my list down to just ten! But at the risk of bending the rules I'd also like to say that my own high point this year was working on our new Blu-ray edition of The Edge of the World  (Michael Powell, 1937), with titles from the Flipside and Adelphi series playing a close second. With the release of these weird and wonderful films, the history of British cinema is still being written.


Ross Wilbanks

Charlotte, NC, USA

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1. The Films of Pat O’Neill (1963-2009) Lookout Mountain; R0
2. Letters from Fontainhas: Three Films by Pedro Costa (Ossos, In Vanda’s Room, Colossal Youth, Pedro Costa, 1997/2000/2006) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. Eika Katappa & The Death of Maria Malibran (Werner Schroeter 1968-72) Editions Filmmuseum; R0 PAL
4. Chaplin at Keystone (Various directors, 1914) Flicker Alley; R0 BUY from Amazon!
5. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
6. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
7. Sestaja cast’ mira & Odinnadcatyj (Dziga Vertov 1926-28) Editions Filmmuseum; R0 PAL
8. Ice & Milestones (Robert Kramer 1969-75) Capricci; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
9. The Great Consoler (Lev Kuleshov 1933) HYPERKINO/Ruscicio; R0 PAL
10. The Films of Bruce Baillie 2&3 (1962-1970) Canyon Cinema; R0
 

Comments: The first and last selections on this list are the (close to) completed works of 2 major film-makers over multiple DVDs. Excited over many Eclipse box sets this year: the discovery of Allan King, the peeks into Sacha Guitry and Nasiga Oshima among others. Thank you Criterion for continuing to put out DVDs. Enjoyed immensely (already!) the DVD put out by Masters of Cinema, La Signora di Tutti. The overall best release for me was By Brakhage: An Anthology 2 but I do not own the Blu-ray version and therefore could not put it on my list.


Nick Wrigley
England

Top 10 SD-DVD Releases OF 2010

1. 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. Letters from Fontainhas: Three Films by Pedro Costa (Ossos, In Vanda’s Room, Colossal Youth, Pedro Costa, 1997/2000/2006) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. The Frantisek Vlacil Collection - (Frantisek Vlacil 67-70) Second Run; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
4. Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey, 1937) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
5. Shadows of Progress: Documentary films in post-war Britain 1951-1977 - BFI; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
6. Secrets of Nature: Pioneering Natural History Films (Various directors, UK, 1922-33) BFI; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
7. Morgiana (Juraj Herz, 1972) Second Run; R 0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
8. Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
9. Chaplin at Keystone 1910s - BFI; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: I wish all these releases had been on Blu-ray (especially the von Sternbergs), but I realise that's an unreasonable wish. Was very lucky to at least be able to release Make Way for Tomorrow on Blu-ray in the MoC Series.
 

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
Stagecoach (John Ford, 1939) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
2.
Paths of Glory (Stanley Kubrick, 1957) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
3.
The Edge of the World (Michael Powell, UK, 1937) BFI; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
4.
Tokyo Story (Yasujiro Ozu, 1953) BFI; RB BUY from Amazon!
5.
The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
6.
Late Spring (Yasujiro Ozu, 1949) BFI; RB BUY from Amazon!
7.
Early Summer (Yasujiro Ozu, 1951) BFI; RB BUY from Amazon!
8.
The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke, 2009) Artificial Eye; R B BUY from Amazon!
9.
Close-Up (Abbas Kiarostami, 1990) Criterion Collection; RA BUY from Amazon!
10.
Enter The Void (Gaspar Noe, 2009) WildSide ; RB BUY from Amazon!
 

Comments: December 27th update: I just saw The Maltese Falcon Blu-ray followed by The Treasure of the Sierra Madre Blu-ray and both looked astonishingly good. Going to watch The African Queen Blu-ray tonight. When I watch a DVD now I feel like I'm watching YouTube (and I realise that's a pretty sad 'graphics tart' thing to say, because DVDs look amazing on smaller TVs, but I'm looking forward to when 1080p is the norm. It's such a treat.) It's a whopping ten years now since I bought my first DVD player (August 2000 as part of an Apple G4 tower) and I've recently been looking back at everything: at ten years of Criterion obsession; ten years of following the BFI's label and watching it morph into the muscular powerhouse it is today; nearly 7 years of making MoC discs; and ongoing affection for labels such as Second Run, Artificial Eye, Flicker Alley, Carlotta, Ripleys, Cinema Guild, Project X, Mondo Vision, Blue Underground and a host of others who care about their own high standards. This has definitely been a glorious golden period. Obviously, none of these labels would be able to do the work they do if folk didn't buy their discs. I hope in another ten years there's still a decent business model in place for this sort of care and attention to flourish. If not, perhaps we'll all finally be able to find the time to listen to the commentary tracks we don't bother listening to today! -- It's time for the smaller labels to occupy the higher ground and offer something beautiful and physical that people want to own/collect (the majors aren't that arsed about catalogue titles on Blu-ray) and I can't wait to see what everyone turns out over the next few years.


Nick Zegarac

Windsor, Ontario, Canada

Top Blu-ray Releases
1.
The Red Shoes (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 1948) Criterion RA BUY from Amazon!. One of the all time artistic masterpieces of British cinema receives its justly deserved state of the art cornerstone audio/video presentation, packed with meaningful extras.
2.
Black Narcissus (Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1947) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!. The other iconic film from The Archers is at last a sumptuous visual feast on home video. Haunting, compelling melodrama of the first order in a transfer that matches its status as a work of art.
3. The Ghost Writer Roman Polanski, Summit, R A
BUY from Amazon!. Heart pounding thriller with superb visuals and a compelling script - easily Polanski's best work since Chinatown!
4. The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (John Huston 1948) Warner
; R ALL BUY from Amazon!. A magnificent no-brainer upgrade to Blu with exceptional image clarity that reawakens Huston's slumbering giant with renewed vigor.
5.
Psycho (50th Anniversary Edition) (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) Universal; R ALL BUY from Amazon! A breathtaking B&W transfer that perfectly illustrates for the collector first - why more B&W movies need to be seen on Blu and second, why after 50 years we still can't take a shower without at least hearing a hint of that eerie string music.
6.
Bridge on the River Kwai, (David Lean, 1957) Sony; R All BUY from Amazon!. A 'best foot forward' visual presentation of possibly the finest anti-war movie ever made. If there's only one thing any fan of Lean could wish for more that this it's a Blu version of Lean's other Sony masterpiece, Lawrence of Arabia with the same consideration afforded. This is a must have!
7.
The Sound of Music (Robert Wise, 1965) Fox; R ALL BUY from Amazon!. Still the happiest sound in all the world, only now fleshed out with so many extra features that one can gush and coo over this celebrated musical until next Christmas. All together now..."doe, a deer, a female deer..."
8.
White Christmas (Michael Curtiz, 1954) Paramount; R ALL BUY from Amazon!. "Sisters. Sisters. There were never such devoted sisters..." and there's never been a video presentation of this perennial holiday favourite as bold, brassy and classy as this. Paramount gets top marks for starting from scratch and giving us an early stocking stuffer in glorious 1080p brilliance.
9.
Modern Times (Charlie Chaplin, 1936) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!. One of the little tramp's best outings finally gets the respect it deserves. Not much in the way of new extras, but the transfer is well worth the repurchase.
10. Beauty and the Beast (Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise 1991) Disney R A
BUY from Amazon!. The tale as old as time is as good as new on Blu. Disney proves unequivocally why it continues to lead the pack in terms of consistent quality and providing a comprehensive collector's copy of some of their most celebrated animated movies. Now, if we could only convince the studio to do as much for their catalogue live action titles...hmmm!
 

Comments: Although the year's releases of classic movies on Blu-Ray were slender at best, there were undoubtedly more titles worth owning, thanks to each studio's commitment in doing their absolute best by their catalogue titles. 2010 was not a banner year by any stretch and 2011 looks about the same in terms of quantity - with golden oldies getting short shrift to the latest blockbuster no one will probably remember in six months time. But quality is what Blu is all about and this year, more than any other, Hollywood took notice of that fact. As such, there was much more to see in 1080p! My wish list is ever brimming with a backlog of catalogue titles from the 1930s, 40s, 50s and 60s to add to that list. Some will undoubtedly make the cut in the coming months. Many, regrettably will probably not. Oh well, this collector can still wish, can't he?

 

 

 

Top 35 Total
1. With 135 Votes

3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
2. tied with 126 votes

The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
3. With 120 points

 Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
4. With 67 points

City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
5. With 54 points

 The Frantisek Vlacil Collection - (Frantisek Vlacil 67-70) Second Run; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!
6. With 53 points

M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Criterion; R'A' BUY from Amazon!
7. With 50 points

Apocalypse Now (3-disc) (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Lionsgate; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
8. With 49 points

Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
9. With 46 votes

Letters from Fontainhas: Three Films by Pedro Costa (Ossos, In Vanda’s Room, Colossal Youth, Pedro Costa, 1997/2000/2006) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
10. With 44 pints

Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
11. tied with 40 votes

Lubitsch in Berlin (The Doll/The Oyster Princess/I Don't Want to be a Man/Sumurun/Anna Boleyn/The Wildcat) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
The Red Shoes (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 1948) Criterion RA BUY from Amazon!
12. With 30 points

The Leopard, (Luchino Visconti, 1963) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
13.
Stagecoach (John Ford, 1939) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!y
14. With 37 votes

Chaplin at Keystone 1910s - BFI; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
15. With 36 votes

The African Queen (John Huston, 1951) Paramount; R ALL  BUY from Amazon!
16. With 35 points

Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics II (Human Desire/ Pushover/ Nightfall/ The Brothers Rico/ City of Fear), Fritz Lang, Richard Quine, Phil Karlson, Jacques Tourneur, Irving Lerner, 1953-59, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!
18. tied with 34 votes

America Lost & Found-BBS Story Collection (Head, Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Drive, He Said, A Safe Place, The Last Picture Show, The King of Marvin Gardens) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
Film Noir Classics Collection 5 (Cornered, Deadline at Dawn, Desperate, Backfirem, Armored Car Robbery, Dial 1119, The Phenix City Story, Crime in the Streets) 45-56, Warner; R1 BUY from Amazon!
19. With 33 votes

Psycho (50th Anniversary Edition) (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) Universal; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
20. With 32 votes

Black Narcissus (Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1947) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
21. With 31 points

Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey, 1937) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!
22. Tied with 30 votes

Icons of Suspense Collection: Hammer Films (Stop Me Before I Kill/Cash on Demand/ Never Take Candy from a Stranger/ The Snorkel/ The Damned), 1957-1962, Sony R1 BUY from Amazon!
The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick, 1998) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
23. With 29 votes

La Signora Di Tutti (Max Ophuls, 1934) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
24. with 28 votes

The Magician (Ingmar Bergman, 1958), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
25. With 28 votes

Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey 1937), Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
26. - With 27 Votes

Modern Times (Charlie Chaplin, 1936) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
Revanche (Götz Spielmann, 2008) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke, 2009) Artificial Eye; R B BUY from Amazon!
27. Tied with 25 votes

Lola Montes (Max Ophuls, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
Paths of Glory (Stanley Kubrick, 1957) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
28. Tied with 23 votes

The Complete Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927) Kino; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
The Sound of Music (Robert Wise, 1965) Fox; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!
29.With 23 points

There’s Always Tomorrow (Douglas Sirk, 1956) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
30. With 21 votes

The Ghost Writer Roman Polanski, Summit, R A BUY from Amazon!
31. Tied with 20 points

Sammy Going South (Alexander Mackendrick, 1963) Optimum R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
Les Vacances de M. Hulot (Jacques Tati, 1953) BFI; R B BUY from Amazon!
The Visitor (Giulio Paradisi, 1979) Code Red; R1 BUY from Amazon!
32. Tied with 19 Votes

Battleship Potemkin (Sergei Eisenstein, 1925); Kino International; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
Les Demoiselles de Rochefort (Jacques Demy, 1966) Arte; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
Fantasia (Luske, Sharpsteen et al, 1940) Walt Disney; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
Paris, Texas (Wim Wenders, 1984) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
Vivre sa vie (Jean-Luc Godard, 1962) Criterion R'A'  BUY from Amazon!
33. Tied with 18 votes

French Can Can (Jean Renoir, 1955) Gaumont; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
Love Exposure (Shion Sono, 2008) Third Window; UK R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
Shadows Of Forgotten Ancestors (Sergei Parajanov, 1964) Artificial Eye R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
Thriller - The Complete Series (various, 1960-62) Image; R1
BUY from Amazon!
Two Films by Yasujiro Ozu (The Only Son, There Was a Father) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!  
Walkabout (Nicolas Roeg, 1971) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
34. Tied with 17 votes

 The Law (La Loi) (Jules Dassin, 1959) Oscilloscope; R0 BUY from Amazon!
The Queen of Spades (Thorold Dickinson, 1949) Optimum Home Entertainment; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
35. Tied with 16 votes

Fantastic Mr. Fox (Wes Anderson, 2009) 20th Century Fox; R A BUY from Amazon!
The Italian Straw Hat (René Clair, 1928) Flicker Alley; R0 BUY from Amazon!
Madam Satan (Cecil B. Demille, 1930) WB Archives; R0 Click to access Warner Archive
BUY from Amazon!
Presenting Sacha Guitry (The Story of a Cheat, The Pearls of the Crown, Desire and Quadrille - Sacha Guitry, 1936-1938) Eclipse; R1 BUY from Amazon!
Tokyo Story (Yasujiro Ozu, 1953) BFI; RB BUY from Amazon!    

 

 

THE WINNERS - DVD

 

First Place with 135 pts – is 3 Silent Classics by Josef von Sternberg (Underworld 1927/The Last Command 1928/The Docks of New York 1928), Josef von Sternberg, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!. Vienna-born, New York–raised Josef von Sternberg directed some of the most influential, stylish dramas ever to come out of Hollywood. Though best known for his star-making collaborations with Marlene Dietrich, von Sternberg began his career during the final years of the silent era, dazzling audiences and critics with his films’ dark visions and innovative cinematography. The titles in this collection, made on the cusp of the sound age, are three of von Sternberg’s greatest works, gritty evocations of gangster life (Underworld), the Russian Revolution (The Last Command), and working-class desperation (The Docks of New York) made into shadowy movie spectacle. Criterion is proud to present these long unavailable classics of American cinema, each with two musical scores.

     

 

 

Second Place with 126pts – is Roberto Rossellini's War Trilogy (Open City/ Paisan/Germany Year Zero), Roberto Rossellini, 1945-47, Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!. Roberto Rossellini is one of the most influential filmmakers of all time. And it was with his trilogy of films made during and after World War II—Rome Open City, Paisan, and Germany Year Zero—that he left his first transformative mark on cinema. With their stripped-down aesthetic, largely nonprofessional casts, and unorthodox approaches to storytelling, these intensely emotional works were international sensations and came to define the neorealist movement. Shot in battle-ravaged Italy and Germany, these three films are some of our most lasting, humane documents of devastated postwar Europe, containing universal images of both tragedy and hope.

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Third Place with 54pts The Frantisek Vlacil Collection - (Frantisek Vlacil 67-70) Second Run; R0 PAL BUY from Amazon!. A 4-disc set comprising three haunting epics from the godfather of the Czech New Wave along with Tomá Hejtmánek's acclaimed 2003 documentary portrait of Vlá il. A fantastic opportunity to discover this great visionary master of world cinema. Set includes: Marketa Lazarová (1967): Voted the greatest Czech film ever made, a dark and passionate medieval epic that chronicles the doomed love affair of two young lovers set against the rivalry between two warring clans. The Valley of the Bees (1967): Set in 13th century Europe - a raw and powerful moral fable of corruption and fundamentalism. Adelheid (1969): Vlá il's first colour film - an emotional tale of two lovers caught up in the bitter political and emotional aftermath of WWII. Sentiment (2003): The acclaimed documentary portrait of Vlá il - EXCLUSIVE TO THIS BOX SET.

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Fourth Place with 46pts – is Letters from Fontainhas: Three Films by Pedro Costa (Ossos, In Vanda’s Room, Colossal Youth, Pedro Costa, 1997/2000/2006) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!. One of the most important artists on the international film scene today, Portuguese director Pedro Costa has been steadily building an impressive body of work since the late eighties. And these are the three films that put him on the map: spare, painterly portraits of battered, largely immigrant lives in the slums of Fontainhas, a neighborhood on the outskirts of Lisbon. Hypnotic, controlled works, Ossos, In Vanda’s Room, and Colossal Youth confirm Costa as a provocative new cinematic poet, one who locates beauty in the most unlikely of places.

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Fifth Place with 44pts Eclipse Series 21-Oshimas Outlaw Sixties - (Pleasures of the Flesh, Violence at Noon, Sing a Song of Sex, Double Suicide and Three Resurrected Drunkards) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon! - Often called the Godard of the East, Japanese director Nagisa Oshima was one of the most provocative film artists of the twentieth century, and his works challenged and shocked the cinematic world for decades. Following his rise to prominence at Shochiku, Oshima struck out to form his own production company, Sozo-sha, in the early sixties. That move ushered in the prolific period of his career that gave birth to the five films collected here. Unsurprisingly, this studio renegade was fascinated by stories of outsiders—serial killers, rabid hedonists, and stowaway misfits are just some of the social castoffs you’ll meet in these audacious, cerebral entries in the New Wave surge that made Japan a hub of truly daredevil moviemaking.

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 In for 6th with 40 points is Lubitsch in Berlin (The Doll/The Oyster Princess/I Don't Want to be a Man/Sumurun/Anna Boleyn/The Wildcat) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!. A DVD collection of the early German silents that established the incredible Ernst Lubitsch’s reputation not only as master/creator of the hyper-risqué hundred-karat rom-com (the “Lubitsch Touch” film), but as an innovator of set design, an able director of extras, and a capable pacer of melodramatic arcs. These traits — calling cards for Lubitsch’s eventual and triumphant Hollywood career (directing such immortal classics as Trouble in Paradise and To Be or Not to Be) — manifest themselves across six varied works, riotous in every sense: Ich möchte kein Mann sein [I Wouldn’t Like to Be a Man] (1918) — Die Puppe. [The Doll.] (1919) — Die Austernprinzessin. [The Oyster Princess.] (1919) — Sumurun (1920) — Anna Boleyn (1920) — and Die Bergkatze [The Mountain-Lion / The Wildcat] (1921).

         

 

 

7th Place: Chaplin at Keystone 1910s - BFI; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon! - Charles Chaplin joined Keystone studios in late 1913, making 35 films in a single year, directing more than half of them, and developing his much loved persona, The Little Tramp. This stunning 4-disc set featuring the 34 surviving Chaplin Keystone shorts and the Keystone feature Tillies Punctured Romance is the result of an international collaboration to restore the films between the BFI National Archive, L Immagine Ritrovata in Bologna and Lobster Films in Paris with the UCLA Film and Television Archive, Library of Congress, and with the support of Association Chaplin, France. With musical accompaniment by Eric Beheim, Neil Brand, Antonio Coppola and The Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra.

 

          

 

 

8th Place with 35pts – is Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics II (Human Desire/ Pushover/ Nightfall/ The Brothers Rico/ City of Fear), Fritz Lang, Richard Quine, Phil Karlson, Jacques Tourneur, Irving Lerner, 1953-59, Sony; R1 BUY from Amazon!. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment and The Film Foundation partner once again to bring five films to DVD for the first time, fully restored and remastered, in Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics II. In this second volume, renowned directors Fritz Lang, Phil Karlson, and Irving Lerner are joined by Jacques Tourneur and Richard Quine in proving that lust, adultery, greed, and revenge all adds up to cold, calculated murder. Film Noir Classics II takes you on a dark journey among lowlifes and mobsters, cops and gun molls, and the dimwitted, hapless pawns who forever changed the landscape of cinema, and whose doomed paths are as disturbing today as when they were first committed to film.

 

       

 

 

In Ninth with 34pts – is Film Noir Classics Collection 5 (Cornered, Deadline at Dawn, Desperate, Backfirem, Armored Car Robbery, Dial 1119, The Phenix City Story, Crime in the Streets) 45-56, Warner; R1 BUY from Amazon!. Out of the vaults and into the light: a fascinating 4-Disc Set showcasing 8 genre gems rich with the intensity and diversity of noir! Disc 1 wreaks revenge, with Dick Powell on the hunt in Cornered and Steve Brodie on the lam in Desperate. Caught-in-the-act immediacy highlights Disc 2’s corruption exposé The Phenix City Story and the hostage drama Dial 1119. Disc 3 turns procedural with noir ace Charles McGraw bulldogging the perps of an Armored Car Robbery then turns to social-conscience filmmaking with Crime in the Streets (John Cassavetes and Sal Mineo star). An unfatale femme is rare in noir but invaluable when strong dames help their men out of jams, as do Disc 4’s Susan Hayward in Deadline at Dawn and Virginia Mayo in Backfire. Step into the shadows and suspense.

      

 

 

Tenth Place with  31pts – is Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey, 1937) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!. Leo McCarey’s Make Way for Tomorrow is one of the great unsung Hollywood masterpieces, an enormously moving Depression-era depiction of the frustrations of family, aging, and the generation gap. Victor Moore and Beulah Bondi headline a cast of incomparable character actors, starring as an elderly couple who must move in with their grown children after the bank takes their home, yet end up separated and subject to their offspring’s selfish whims. An inspiration for Ozu’s Tokyo Story, Make Way for Tomorrow is among American cinema’s purest tearjerkers, all the way to its unflinching ending, which McCarey refused to change despite studio pressure.

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11th - 20th

 

11) Icons of Suspense Collection: Hammer Films (Stop Me Before I Kill/Cash on Demand/ Never Take Candy from a Stranger/ The Snorkel/ The Damned), 1957-1962, Sony R1 BUY from Amazon!
12) La Signora Di Tutti (Max Ophuls, 1934) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL
BUY from Amazon!
13) There’s Always Tomorrow (Douglas Sirk, 1956) Masters of Cinema; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
14)
Sammy Going South (Alexander Mackendrick, 1963) Optimum R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
15) The Visitor (Giulio Paradisi, 1979) Code Red; R1 BUY from Amazon!
16-tied)
Love Exposure (Shion Sono, 2008) Third Window; UK R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
Shadows Of Forgotten Ancestors (Sergei Parajanov, 1964) Artificial Eye R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
Thriller - The Complete Series (various, 1960-62) Image; R1
BUY from Amazon!
Two Films by Yasujiro Ozu (The Only Son, There Was a Father) Criterion; R1 BUY from Amazon!  
17 - tie) 
The Law (La Loi) (Jules Dassin, 1959) Oscilloscope; R0 BUY from Amazon!
The Queen of Spades (Thorold Dickinson, 1949) Optimum Home Entertainment; R2 PAL BUY from Amazon!
18-20th)
The Italian Straw Hat (René Clair, 1928) Flicker Alley; R0 BUY from Amazon!
Madam Satan (Cecil B. Demille, 1930) WB Archives; R0 Click to access Warner Archive
BUY from Amazon!
Presenting Sacha Guitry (The Story of a Cheat, The Pearls of the Crown, Desire and Quadrille - Sacha Guitry, 1936-1938) Eclipse; R1 BUY from Amazon!      

       

BLU-RAYs OF THE YEAR

   

First Place with 126 pts – is The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon! The Night of the Hunter —incredibly, the only film the great actor Charles Laughton ever directed—is truly a stand-alone masterwork. A horror movie with qualities of a Grimm fairy tale, it stars a sublimely sinister Robert Mitchum as a traveling preacher named Harry Powell (he of the tattooed knuckles), whose nefarious motives for marrying a fragile widow, played by Shelley Winters, are uncovered by her terrified young children. Graced by images of eerie beauty and a sneaky sense of humor, this ethereal, expressionistic American classic—also featuring the contributions of actress Lillian Gish and writer James Agee—is cinema’s most eccentric rendering of the battle between good and evil.

          

 

 

Second Place with 120pts – is Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon! .Drawing on and defining classic sci-fi themes, Metropolis depicts a dystopian future in which society is thoroughly divided in two: while anonymous workers conduct their endless drudgery below ground their rulers enjoy a decadent life of leisure and luxury. When Freder (Gustav Fröhlich) ventures into the depths in search of the beautiful Maria (Brigitte Helm in her debut role), plans of rebellion are revealed and a Maria-replica robot is programmed by mad inventor Rotwang (Rudolf Klein-Rogge) and master of Metropolis Joh Fredersen (Alfred Abel) to incite the workers into a self-destructive riot.

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Third Place with 67pts – is City Girl (F.W. Murnau, 1930) Masters of Cinema; R ALL BUY from Amazon! . After the visual fireworks of Sunrise and the now-lost splendour of 4 Devils, F.W. Murnau turned his attention to this vivid, painterly study of an impulsive and fragile marriage among the wheatfields of Minnesota. During a brief stay in Chicago, innocent farmer’s son Lem falls for and weds Kate, a hard-bitten but lonely waitress. Upon bringing her home at the start of harvest time, the honeymoon soon turns into a claustrophobic struggle as they contend with the bitter scorn of his father and the invasive, leering jealousy of the farm’s labouring community. Tenderly romantic and tough-minded in equal measure, City Girl is one of cinema’s great pastorals, featuring some of the most delicate performances Murnau ever filmed and influencing directors such as Terrence Malick and Jean Vigo.

      

 

 

Fourth Place with  53pts – is M (Fritz Lang, 1931) Criterion; R'A' BUY from Amazon!. A simple, haunting phrase whistled off-screen tells us that a young girl will be killed. “Who is the murderer?” pleads a nearby placard as serial killer Hans Beckert (Peter Lorre) closes in on little Elsie Beckmann… In his harrowing masterwork, Fritz Lang merges trenchant social commentary with chilling suspense, creating a panorama of private madness and public hysteria that to this day remains the blueprint for the psychological thriller.

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Fifth Place with 50pts – is Apocalypse Now (3-disc) (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979) Lionsgate; R ALL BUY from Amazon!. Apocalypse Now is one of the great films. Photography, score, acting and direction are without flaw. Coppola never scaled such heights subsequently. It seems the sheer effort to produce such a work extinguished much of his creative spark. Stravinsky frightened himself with the awesome force of his Sacre Du Printemps, and changed directions after, never to match this achievement; Richard Strauss fled into Neo-romanticism after writing the disturbing Elektra and Salome, unable to equal their innovation and power. But these seminal works (Le Sacre, Salome, Elektra, Apocalypse Now) remain as peaks of Art. Like the great classics of literature, each viewing of this film reveals deeper levels of meaning. It's stupid to even apply an arbitrary rating to this work. It cannot be rated.

                 

 

 

Sixth Place with  49 pts – is Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!. One of the most beloved movie epics of all time, Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai (Shichinin no samurai) tells the story of a sixteenth-century village whose desperate inhabitants hire the eponymous warriors to protect them from invading bandits. This three-hour ride—featuring legendary actors Toshiro Mifune and Takashi Shimura—seamlessly weaves philosophy and entertainment, delicate human emotions and relentless action into a rich, evocative, and unforgettable tale of courage and hope.

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Seventh Place with 40 pts is The Red Shoes (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 1948) Criterion RA BUY from Amazon!. The Red Shoes, the singular fantasia from Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, is cinema’s quintessential backstage drama, as well as one of the most glorious Technicolor feasts ever concocted for the screen. Moira Shearer is a rising star ballerina torn between an idealistic composer and a ruthless impresario intent on perfection. Featuring outstanding performances, blazingly beautiful cinematography by Jack Cardiff, Oscar-winning sets and music, and an unforgettable, hallucinatory central dance sequence, this beloved classic, now dazzlingly restored, stands as an enthralling tribute to the life of the artist.

     

 

 

Eighth Place with  38pts is The Leopard, (Luchino Visconti, 1963) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!. Making its long-awaited U.S. home video debut, Luchino Visconti’s The Leopard (Il Gattopardo) is an epic on the grandest possible scale. The film recreates, with nostalgia, drama, and opulence, the tumultuous years of Italy’s Risorgimento—when the aristocracy lost its grip and the middle classes rose and formed a unified, democratic Italy. Burt Lancaster stars as the aging prince watching his culture and fortune wane in the face of a new generation, represented by his upstart nephew (Alain Delon) and his beautiful fiancée (Claudia Cardinale). Awarded the Palme d’Or at the 1963 Cannes Film Festival, The Leopard translates Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa’s novel, and the history it recounts, into a truly cinematic masterpiece. The Criterion Collection is proud to present the film in two distinct versions: Visconti’s original Italian version, and the alternate English-language version released in America in a newly restored special edition.

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Ninth Place with 40pts – is Stagecoach (John Ford, 1939) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!. This is where it all started. John Ford’s smash hit and enduring masterpiece Stagecoach revolutionized the western, elevating it from B movie to the A-list and establishing the genre as we know it today. The quintessential tale of a group of strangers thrown together into extraordinary circumstances, Stagecoach features outstanding performances from Hollywood stalwarts Claire Trevor, John Carradine, and Thomas Mitchell, and, of course, John Wayne, in his first starring role for Ford, as the daredevil outlaw the Ringo Kid. Superbly shot and tightly edited, Stagecoach (Ford’s first trip to Monument Valley) is Hollywood storytelling at its finest.

    

 

 

Tenth Place with 36pts – is The African Queen (John Huston, 1951) Paramount; R ALL  BUY from Amazon!. In his only Oscar-winning performance, Bogart stars as Charlie Allnut, a reprobate who uses his little battered steamer, The African Queen, to run supplies to small villages in East Africa at the onset of WWI. At one stop he meets Rose (Katharine Hepburn), the devoted spinster sister of Rev. Samuel Sayer (Robert Morley). When Charlie returns to the village later, he finds that German troops have invaded and Sayer is dead, and he offers to take the distraught Rose back to civilization. Thus begins a perilous and unforgettable journey as Charlie and Rose decide to do their part in the war effort against the Germans.

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11th - 20th

 

11) America Lost & Found-BBS Story Collection (Head, Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Drive, He Said, A Safe Place, The Last Picture Show, The King of Marvin Gardens) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
12)
Psycho (50th Anniversary Edition) (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960) Universal; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
13) Black Narcissus (Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1947) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
14)
The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick, 1998) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!

15) The Magician (Ingmar Bergman, 1958), Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
16)
Make Way for Tomorrow (Leo McCarey 1937), Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!
17 - tie)

Modern Times (Charlie Chaplin, 1936) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
Revanche (Götz Spielmann, 2008) Criterion; R A BUY from Amazon!
The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke, 2009) Artificial Eye; R B BUY from Amazon!
18 - tie

Lola Montes (Max Ophuls, 1955) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
Paths of Glory (Stanley Kubrick, 1957) Criterion; RA BUY from Amazon!
19-tie)

The Complete Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927) Kino; R ALL BUY from Amazon!
The Sound of Music (Robert Wise, 1965) Fox; R ALL
BUY from Amazon!

20)The Ghost Writer Roman Polanski, Summit, R A BUY from Amazon!
 

 

 

 

Label Results

 

 Criterion = 30.05%  
 MOC = 10.35%  
 Eclipse – = 5.86%  
 BFI – = 4.95%  
 Art Eye – = 4.06%  
 Warner = 3.26%  
 Sony = 3.23%  
 Kino = 2.52%  
 Warner Archive = 2.20%  
 Lionsgate = 2.03%  
 Optimum = 1.80%  
 Universal = 1.52%  
 Cinema Guild – = 1.20%  
 Paramount = 1.11%  
 Gaumont = 1.06%  
 Disney = 1.03%  
 Flicker Alley – = 0.91%  
 Arrow -= 0.80%  
 Oscilloscope – = 0.71%  
 Code Red = 0.63%
Break out companies — Cinema Guild, Arrow

 

Best Cover Design:

 

Metropolis - Reconstructed and Restored (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon!

 

 

 


Best Audio Commentary

 

 

Rosenbaum/Kalat – Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927) Masters of Cinema/Eureka; RB BUY from Amazon! = 32% of the vote

 

Best Extras

 

'Laughton Directs' on The Night of the Hunter = 21% of the vote
Tag Gallager extras on any number of titles = 20% of the vote

 


Guilty Pleasures

 

Score (Radley Metzger, 1972) Cult Epics R'ALL'  BUY from Amazon! - Winner
 

Runners-up
House – Criterion Blu-ray
Shout! Factory Corman Titles
Arrow Films Argento titles
Green Slime – Warner Archive
Pretty Maids All in a Row- Warner Archive
Scorpion Releasing Titles

 


 

 

Have a fabulous 2011!

 





 

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