Category Archives: The Criterion Critique

The Criterion Critique: Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975)

Throughout the film, we are given clues that something odd or even supernatural may have happened. For example, at one point the girls’ carriage driver and teacher both note that their watches have stopped at exactly noon, right around when they arrived at the rock. Should we take this as some unnatural force at this ancient rock plaguing the girls? At another point in the film, as the ladies examine and take measurements of the distinctive geological formation, we notice a small group of men also eating lunch and sunning themselves. After the girls go missing, should we believe that these men did something to them? That perhaps they have been kidnapped or murdered? Were they abducted by a UFO? Did they simply fall into a crevice in the rock? Is this all a dream?

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The Criterion Critique: The Four Feathers (1939)

While browsing through the Criterion Collection on Hulu Plus, I noticed The Four Feathers listed under the heading of most popular films. It was then that I learned that the Heath Ledger movie was, in fact, a remake of a film by the same name produced in 1939. Barring improvements in special effects, I tend to think that original movies are usually better than their remakes, so I decided to try the 1939 version of The Four Feathers.

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The Criterion Critique: Beauty and the Beast (1946)

Valentine’s Day is fast approaching. Time for all good husbands, wives, boyfriends, and girlfriends to start making plans. Among the search for the perfect restaurant, box of candy, or whatever else your significant other may enjoy, might I suggest a beautiful cinematic retelling of one of the greatest classic stories of romance?

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