Three more for Criterion

The Criterion Collection has announced three big hitting titles to add to the collection, the definative noir piece The Killers, The German work The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum and the hugely controversial I am Curious – Yellow (along with its companion piece Blue) are all coming to DVD This winter.

Two hired killers muscle their way into a school for the blind and terrorize the secretary until she reveals the whereabouts of racecar driver Johnny North. When the gunmen track him down, Johnny wordlessly accepts his fate with the passivity of a man already dead. Why? This gnawing question leads the hit men deep into a twisted underworld of violence and betrayal under the bright California sun, populated by an unsavory cast of characters including the vicious white-collar gangster Browning and the beautiful Sheila Farr.

The black and white fullscreen film will be released in its original aspect ratio and with its original mono sound. The extras will include production correspondence, a rare behind-the-scenes stills gallery and an essay from cultural scholar Geoffrey O’Brien.

When Katharina Blum spends the night with an alleged terrorist, her quiet, ordered life falls into ruins. Suddenly a suspect, Katharina is subject to a vicious smear campaign by the police and a ruthless tabloid journalist, testing the limits of her dignity and her sanity. Volker Schlöndorff and Margarethe von Trotta’s powerful adaptation of Heinrich Böll’s novel is a stinging commentary on state power, individual freedom, and media manipulation––as relevant today as on the day of its release in 1975.

The films 1.77:1 aspect ratio will be preserved with a new anamorphic transfer. The film will be presented in its original mono. Included in the release are a new video interview with directors Volker Schlöndorff and Margarethe von Trotta, a new video interview with director of photography Jost Vacano, a documentary on author Heinrich Boll, the original theatrical trailer and improved English subtitle translation.

Seized by customs upon entry to the United States, subject of a heated court battle, banned in cities across the United States, Vilgot Sjöman’s I Am Curious—Yellow is one of the most controversial films of all time. This landmark document of Swedish society during the sexual revolution has been declared both obscene and revolutionary. It tells the story of Lena, a searching and rebellious young woman, and her personal quest to understand the social and political conditions in 1960s Sweden, as well as her bold exploration of her own sexual identity. Shattering taboos as it freely traverses the lines between fact and fiction, I Am Curious—Yellow is presented here for the first time with its companion piece I Am Curious—Blue, a parallel film featuring the same characters and in which the lines between documentary and fiction are even further blurred.

Together totaling almost four hours, the films will be presented in their original black and white fullscreen and mono sound. Extras include excerpts from director Vilgot Sjöman’s Self Portrait (1992), a documentary made for Swedish television, a new video introduction by the director, a director’s diary: a selected scene audio commentary by Sjöman, a video interview with legendary publisher Barney Rosset and attorney Edward De Grazia about the controversy surrounding the film, The battle for I Am Curious—Yellow a video piece on the film’s censorship and trial, excerpts from the transcripts of the trial, theatrical trailers, an essay by critic Gary Giddins and a reprinted 1968 interview with the director and new and improved English subtitle translation.

With spine numbers 176, 177 and 179 respectively, “The Killers”, “The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum” and “I Am Curious – Yellow” will all be released in January with Katharina priced at $29.95 and the others at $39.95 each.

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