‘Barry Lyndon,’ ‘Personal Shopper,’ ‘Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me’ & More Coming to Criterion in October


Courtesy of Criterion press release:

"Two of cinema’s most idiosyncratic geniuses headline this month’s announcement, with David Lynch’s Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me and Stanley Kubrick’s Barry Lyndon joining the collection. Also in October: new editions of films by Orson Welles, Olivier Assayas, and Agnieszka Smoczyńska, and a Blu-ray upgrade of Carl Theodor Dreyer’s Vampyr."

It has been no secret that Stanley Kubrick's masterpiece "Barry Lyndon" has been messed up with the wrong aspect ratio for decades on home video. So it is great to see Criterion finally cleaning this mess up and releasing it the way it was supposed to be released. Kubrick shot the film in 1.66, so why did it take 4 decades to finally have a release in that aspect ratio? Bewildering, but I'm glad we're finally having it. Coincidentally, this is the only Kubrick film on Criterion, that I know of at least, and is also one of the most uninspiring cover arts, basically retaining the original movie poster's image. Did the Kubrick estate not allow Criterion to go beyond what was already available? That would be my bet.

This is Kubrick's letter to a projectionist regarding "Barry Lyndon."

Stanley Kubrick's letter to projectionists regarding his film Barry Lyndon

Here is something  wrote on Barry Lyndon last year:

"Barry Lyndon. It’s one of Stanley Kubrick’s greatest achievements, and yet it is has rarely been uttered in the same league as A Clockwork Orange, 2001: A Space Odyssey, or Dr. Strangelove. However, as the years have gone by they’ve been very kind to Kubrick’s 18th-century tale. It was ranked 59th on Sight & Sound’s prestigious critics poll of the greatest movies ever made and has been hailed by Martin Scorsese, among many others, as his favorite Kubrick film. John Alcott’s cinematography also ranks as one of the landmarks of the field of photography, with its ingenious natural lighting that, in one very famous scene, lit up rooms with dozens of chandeliers. Its impact has been felt all the way to last year’s The Revenant, which also used natural lighting and was clearly inspired by Alcott’s famous lens."

The other Criterion titles: