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Help me choose between these Criterions(Seventh Seal,Sullivan's Travels,39 Steps)

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Help me choose between these Criterions(Seventh Seal,Sullivan's Travels,39 Steps)

Old 09-21-03, 07:48 AM
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Help me choose between these Criterions(Seventh Seal,Sullivan's Travels,39 Steps)

I know that these Criterions are generally highly recommended and I hope to have them all some day but if you had to choose one of these titles which one would get top priority? Thanks.
Old 09-21-03, 08:57 AM
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I'm not sure how much help I can be, since I've seen only the first two, but... The Seventh Seal is one of my all time favorite films. If you like a "deep and meaningful" film you won't have to look very far. While some might find it arid and boring, I thought it was excellent, with great performances from Max von Sydow, Bengt Ekerot and Nils Poppe and the rest of the cast. I've watched the film several times and got something new from it every time.

Sullivan's Travels was a bit of a sleeper hit for me - I had not previously seen it or any of Sturges' work prior to this. But wow what a good movie - sharply written and acted with some great plot twists along the way. Watched with an audience (mixed teens and adults in my case), it gets even better - I could tell everyone was really enjoying it also.

In a kind of ironic way, The Seventh Seal would be the kind of film that the main character wanted to create in the beginning of Sullivan's Travels. While both movies are really good and I would not want to be without either, The Seventh Seal would be the winner for me (though ideally I'd want all 3). Hope this helps...
Old 09-21-03, 09:21 AM
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All of the above.
Old 09-21-03, 09:57 AM
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I see you already have Lady Vanishes - if you like that one, then go for 39 Steps.
Old 09-21-03, 10:38 AM
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I'd vote for 39 Steps... then get Seventh Seal 2nd.
Old 09-21-03, 02:08 PM
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The Seventh Seal
Old 09-21-03, 02:46 PM
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I'd go with The Seventh Seal also.
Great film and equally great presentation from Criterion even though it's one of the earlier releases.
Old 09-21-03, 10:27 PM
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Don't forget "Brazil".
Old 09-21-03, 10:30 PM
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Or "The Third Man".
Old 09-22-03, 05:19 PM
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Seventh Seal.

Drop everything and buy it. No question at all. Once you see the film, you will know why.

EDIT: Misread the thread, oops! Still, get The 39 Steps next. It's fine Hitchcock (although not as good as The Lady Vanishes) and comes with some nice supplements.

Sullivan's Travels -- you might want to rent it first. I've never been a big Preston Sturges fan, so maybe it's just me. Good commentary track, though.

Last edited by Hokeyboy; 09-23-03 at 04:09 PM.
Old 09-23-03, 11:58 AM
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Wow. All excellent films, but all different in tone and style. It's hard to choose one over another because they are very much unlike each other.

Having seen them all already (many, many times), this is the order I'd buy them in based on how much they influenced me and how they stand up to repeat viewings in my opinion.

Seventh Seal

39 Steps

Sullivan's Travels
Old 10-05-03, 03:42 PM
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yikes........tough to pick from those 3 as I love all three directors.....but The 39 Steps is my favorite Hitchcock film from his British period, so I'd recommend that one first.
Old 10-07-03, 11:56 AM
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Well, here's the thing, in terms of cinematic status, Seventh Seal is probably up there as a true atmospheric film laden with symbolism and philosophy.
Serious critics and film historians will all wax rhapsodic about its importance in the annals of film history.
You might watch it once.
It can be ponderous and talky.

On the other hand, Sullivan's Travels is a funny, touching piece of social commentary that still holds up pretty well today.
Not to mention Veronica Lake with all that hair. Woof!

Sturges dialogue sparkles and cracks.

Seventh Seal message: Life is grim. We're all gonna die.
Sullivan's Travels message: Sometimes, all you have is a good laugh

39 Steps: early British Hitchcock with all that implies.

With the price of Criterions being what they are, rent'em first, then decide.

Have fun.
Joel
Old 10-07-03, 12:02 PM
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I saw the criterion version of 39 Steps yesterday and really enjoyed it. Great suspense/action with the requisite witty banter. The ending seemed a bit rushed to me but overall a very good movie. The extras on the DVD are also very nice and the transfer looked good too.
Old 10-07-03, 03:07 PM
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The Seventh Seal! One of my all time favs & one of the 1st Criterion DVD's I bought.

Sonicflood
Old 10-07-03, 04:21 PM
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Originally posted by TomOpus
I'd vote for 39 Steps... then get Seventh Seal 2nd.
Yeah, that was pretty much what I was going to say after reading the title...
Old 10-10-03, 08:57 PM
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I would definitely rent all first before deciding.

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