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2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Old 08-01-19, 01:41 AM
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2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

30 Days of Criterion - Discussion Thread
August 31st (dusk) - October 1st (dawn)




September is upon us, so it's time to actually watch those Criterion discs we bought in July during the Barnes & Noble sale and get as many viewings out of our Criterion Channel subscriptions as we can! CardiffGiant has done a fantastic job hosting this challenge the last several years, and here's the overview of this challenge that he's crafted:

The goal of the Criterion Challenge is to watch Criterion content and share your experience with the rest of us. There is no specific number goal, no winners, no losers, no prizes.

Don't fixate on volume. The Criterion Collection is well known for pioneering supplemental features such as commentary tracks, documentaries, and video essays, so dive into these things when you can!

There will be a separate thread to include your lists as linked above. A daily journal sort of entry is recommended for your list. Since counting is not required or "scored" in any way, you are free to be as creative as you wish in how you list items. Bolding of your item titles is encouraged, if only to make them stand out to allow others to quickly see if they have seen the same items and wish to comment. Give reviews. Even if it's just a mini-review, a simple /, or a one word description. Be creative and personalize it however you wish - use one post for the whole month, daily posts, weekly posts, give reviews, provide IMDb links, add YouTube videos, add images, etc. It's recommended that you provide a link to your list(s) in your signature for easy access. Last year's List Thread should give you a good idea how participants format their lists.

What qualifies?
  • Any film, short, video or supplemental feature that has been, or is scheduled to be, released by Criterion/Eclipse qualifies. View the library here.
  • Additionally, any title streaming on The Criterion Channel is eligible for this challenge.
  • Titles originally released on Criterion Laserdisc are also eligible for the challenge.
  • The film does not have to be watched on an actual Criterion disc. You may watch the film on any format, provided that it is the same film that Criterion has released. For example, the film 12 Angry Men was released by Criterion on DVD/BD. But you don't have to watch the movie on that particular DVD/BD. You can watch it on VHS, on broadcast TV, on FilmStruck (the new official streaming home of the Criterion Collection), anywhere else that may have the streaming rights, or any of the other DVD/BD releases 12 Angry Men has had.
Criterion titles occasionally appear on broadcast television. Keep an eye on this discussion thread for upcoming broadcasts.

Optional Checklist

The checklist is completely optional. It is just a "fun" inclusion to give one a sense of accomplishment, to help one diversify viewing, or to use as a guide on what to watch next.

Each film can count for multiple sections, but only one check mark per section. Example: Pierrot le fou could count for the 1960's in Decades and Jean-Luc Godard in People, but it could not count for Godard and Anna Karina in People. You would need a separate film for Karina.
Spoiler:
Feature Presentation
Watch one film from every decade covered by Criterion.
--- 1920 - (insert film title here)
--- 1930 -
--- 1940 -
--- 1950 -
--- 1960 -
--- 1970 -
--- 1980 -
--- 1990 -
--- 2000 -
--- 2010 -

Watch something from each of the following spine number ranges.
--- 001-100 -
--- 101-200 -
--- 201-300 -
--- 301-400 -
--- 401-500 -
--- 501-600 -
--- 601-700 -
--- 701-800 -
--- 801-900 -
--- 901-1000 -
--- an Eclipse title -
--- Watch a title not released on DVD by Criterion (a title released on Laserdisc or a streaming exclusive) -

Who, What, and How
Watch 5 films from five different directors.
--- First Person, (insert title)
--- Second Person, (insert title)
--- Third Person, (insert title)
--- Fourth Person, (insert title)
--- Fifth Person, (insert title)

Watch films in at least 5 languages.
--- First language, (insert language), (insert title).
--- Second language, (insert language), (insert title).
--- Third language, (insert language), (insert title).
--- Fourth language, (insert language), (insert title).
--- Fifth language, (insert language), (insert title).

Special Edition Features
Read 5 essays from the Criterion booklets and/or listed here.
--- First Essay title, (title of film)
--- Second Essay title, (title of film)
--- Third Essay title, (title of film)
--- Fourth Essay title, (title of film)
--- Fifth Essay title, (title of film)

Watch 5 Criterion supplemental interviews. Many of these can be found on Criterion.com and in The Criterion Channel (see More within the related film's "collection" page).
--- First Interview Name, (insert film title)
--- Second Interview Name, (insert film title)
--- Third Interview Name, (insert film title)
--- Fourth Interview Name, (insert film title)
--- Fifth Interview Name, (insert film title)

Above and Beyond (Not Required to Complete Checklist)
--- Watch a film with commentary –
--- Watch a supplemental short film –
--- Watch a Criterion disc completely. Every part of it. -
--- Watch an entire Collector's Set, Criterion.com Top Ten List, or a Criterion Channel Collection -
--- Listen to the soundtrack album for a Criterion/Eclipse film -

(Change "---" to "-X-" or some similar mark when you have completed that line item.)


The challenge officially begins August 31 at dusk in whatever location you are in at the time, and ends on October 1st at dawn in whatever location you are in at that time. Also, feel free to time your final Criterion film(s) to coincide with the start of the Horror Challenge.
ONLINE RESOURCES
The Criterion Collection Official Pages and Online Stores
Criterion.com | The Criterion Channel | Barnes & Noble | Facebook | Google Play | Tumblr | Twitter | YouTube

List of Criterion Collection LaserDisc releases on Wikipedia
Banned James Bond LaserDisc Commentary Tracks

Every box set and Top 10 list presently on Criterion.com, formatted to be copied and pasted in DVD Talk.

CriterionCast
iCheckMovies.com The Criterion Collection | The Criterion Collection Signatures | Criterion's Eclipse Collection | Criterion's Eclipse Collection Signatures
Flickchart The Criterion Collection | The Criterion Eclipse Titles | Flickchart: The Blog - Criterion Commentaries
Travis McClain's Criterion for Noobs

Previous DVD Talk Criterion Challenges
2009 Discussion Thread | List Thread | 2010 Discussion Thread | List Thread
2011 Discussion Thread | List Thread | 2012 Discussion Thread | List Thread | 2013 Discussion Thread | List Thread
2014 Discussion Thread | List Thread | 2015 Discussion Thread | List Thread | 2016 Discussion Thread | List Thread
2017 Discussion Thread | List Thread | 2018 Discussion Thread | List Thread

Last edited by Travis McClain; 08-07-19 at 01:20 AM.
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Old 08-01-19, 02:32 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

I've made a few revisions to the guidelines and checklist. The former, I've streamlined a bit, and updated links that did refer to FilmStruck to now direct to the Criterion Channel. To the checklist:

Added Spine #901-1000 item
Updated "Watch an Entire Top Ten List" to "Watch an Entire Collector's Set, Criterion.com Top Ten List, or Criterion Channel Collection"

I'm pretty stoked about this year's challenge, y'all! I subscribed to the Criterion Channel when it launched and have so far streamed more than 60 features and half a dozen shorts, plus a satisfying amount of supplements. Plus, there are some Barnes & Noble acquisitions from the last couple years I still haven't gotten into that I'd like to finally knock out.
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Old 08-01-19, 04:57 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

I think this will be my first time participating in the Criterion Challenge but I have several shiny new titles to watch.
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Old 08-01-19, 11:14 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

School will be starting next month and I'm usually a bit burnt out from the Sci-fi/Fantasy and Animation challenges, but always enjoy the slower pace of Criterions! Nothing new yet for me that I plan on watching but I usually find a handful during the challenge. My goal as usual is to find one movie that I would never have picked up on my own that I love.

Also, I'm really hoping you figured out the trick to copy/pasting those links and didn't do them by hand! I lost a few before I realized you had to hit the source button, THEN copy the links.
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Old 08-01-19, 11:24 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

I might watch some kaiju movies. Starz has released much of the Showa Godzilla series as exclusives by Criterion.
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Old 08-01-19, 05:34 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by lisadoris View Post
I think this will be my first time participating in the Criterion Challenge but I have several shiny new titles to watch.
Yay!

Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
School will be starting next month and I'm usually a bit burnt out from the Sci-fi/Fantasy and Animation challenges, but always enjoy the slower pace of Criterions! Nothing new yet for me that I plan on watching but I usually find a handful during the challenge. My goal as usual is to find one movie that I would never have picked up on my own that I love.
I'm sure I can come up with a suggestion or two...!

Also, I'm really hoping you figured out the trick to copy/pasting those links and didn't do them by hand! I lost a few before I realized you had to hit the source button, THEN copy the links.
I'm sorry. What, now?
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Old 08-01-19, 09:37 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

This is going to be my 2nd Criterion challenge as I participated back in 2015 with only one entry. Hoping to do better this time.
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Old 08-01-19, 09:40 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
I'm sure I can come up with a suggestion or two...!
I'm sorry. What, now?
I'll take it! I messaged you with more info!
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Old 08-02-19, 02:48 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by LorenzoL View Post
This is going to be my 2nd Criterion challenge as I participated back in 2015 with only one entry. Hoping to do better this time.
Glad you're gonna give it another whirl! What'd you watch in 2015?
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Old 08-02-19, 06:43 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
Glad you're gonna give it another whirl! What'd you watch in 2015?
A new tale of Zatoichi
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Old 08-03-19, 10:36 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by LorenzoL View Post
A new tale of Zatoichi
I've never seen any of that series. You could devote the entire month just to it, though, I know that!

I went shopping tonight. I found a used Criterion DVD of Armageddon for $5.99. I couldn't pass that up! I saw it when it opened in theaters, but not since. I've heard that the commentary consists of Ben Affleck basically just trashing it from start to finish, so that ought to be fun.
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Old 08-03-19, 10:48 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Forgot about future double credit possibilities and watched my August animation Criterion tonight. Wow. If you want a true WTF sort of film, I’d recommend Jellyfish Eyes. Pokémon Kaiju sort of sums it up I guess. I either hate it or love it, can’t decide yet.
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Old 08-04-19, 04:51 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
I've never seen any of that series. You could devote the entire month just to it, though, I know that!

I went shopping tonight. I found a used Criterion DVD of Armageddon for $5.99. I couldn't pass that up! I saw it when it opened in theaters, but not since. I've heard that the commentary consists of Ben Affleck basically just trashing it from start to finish, so that ought to be fun.
Oh yeas, Affleck's commentary is a hoot. I wish they had ported it over to the blu-ray release.
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Old 08-04-19, 05:51 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Incidentally, I have a list on Letterboxd of Movies I Watched on The Criterion Channel whose content is fairly self-evident. I've copied and pasted all of my corresponding individual diary entries for each movie on the list (click Read Notes, in case you're unfamiliar with Letterboxd). Some of the movies have already left the channel, and others are scheduled to leave before our challenge begins, but thought I would throw it out there, either to give someone else some ideas of what to watch or for getting some conversation going.
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Old 08-04-19, 07:38 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
I've never seen any of that series. You could devote the entire month just to it, though, I know that!
I personally love Shintaro Katsu interpretation of Zatoichi. The movies might be a little slow for some people but that Zatoichi set by Criterion is one of the best buy I ever did and don't regret it at all. The Samurai films got me into the Criterion collection so it was easy to participate in the challenge this year. I have a few choices that I have been saving to watch.

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
Incidentally, I have a list on Letterboxd of Movies I Watched on The Criterion Channel whose content is fairly self-evident. I've copied and pasted all of my corresponding individual diary entries for each movie on the list (click Read Notes, in case you're unfamiliar with Letterboxd). Some of the movies have already left the channel, and others are scheduled to leave before our challenge begins, but thought I would throw it out there, either to give someone else some ideas of what to watch or for getting some conversation going.
I just followed you on Letterboxd, Travis. My account is a work in progress and don't follow anyone but I don't mind adding people from this Forum. If anybody else has an account and wants a follow, let me know. I'll appreciate your support too if you guys don't mind. The username is the same from here with an animated version of my avatar.
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Old 08-04-19, 11:50 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
Forgot about future double credit possibilities and watched my August animation Criterion tonight. Wow. If you want a true WTF sort of film, I’d recommend Jellyfish Eyes. Pokémon Kaiju sort of sums it up I guess. I either hate it or love it, can’t decide yet.
Talking about crossovers, Travis, do you happen to know if there were any animated films that would qualify for the crossover day that came out last year? Thanks!

Current list: Akira, Fantastic Planet, Fantastic Mr. Fox, and Watership Down, Jason And The Argonauts, King Kong, Robocop. Also, there is animation in the By Brakhage and Science is Fiction box sets.
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Old 08-04-19, 03:59 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
Talking about crossovers, Travis, do you happen to know if there were any animated films that would qualify for the crossover day that came out last year? Thanks!

Current list: Akira, Fantastic Planet, Fantastic Mr. Fox, and Watership Down, Jason And The Argonauts, King Kong, Robocop. Also, there is animation in the By Brakhage and Science is Fiction box sets.
I’d count Jellyfish Eyes, mostly live-action, but near constant animated characters on-screen sorta like Roger Rabbit.

King of Jazz has a cartoon and an animated skit intermixed, close enough for me.

Apparently the Eclipse set, Dusan Makavejev: Free Radical has avant-garde film-making that could count.
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Old 08-04-19, 08:27 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by LorenzoL View Post
I personally love Shintaro Katsu interpretation of Zatoichi. The movies might be a little slow for some people but that Zatoichi set by Criterion is one of the best buy I ever did and don't regret it at all. The Samurai films got me into the Criterion collection so it was easy to participate in the challenge this year. I have a few choices that I have been saving to watch.


I just followed you on Letterboxd, Travis. My account is a work in progress and don't follow anyone but I don't mind adding people from this Forum. If anybody else has an account and wants a follow, let me know. I'll appreciate your support too if you guys don't mind. The username is the same from here with an animated version of my avatar.
Now following you back!

Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
Talking about crossovers, Travis, do you happen to know if there were any animated films that would qualify for the crossover day that came out last year? Thanks!

Current list: Akira, Fantastic Planet, Fantastic Mr. Fox, and Watership Down, Jason And The Argonauts, King Kong, Robocop. Also, there is animation in the By Brakhage and Science is Fiction box sets.
I would have just asked Trevor. Oh, look:

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
I’d count Jellyfish Eyes, mostly live-action, but near constant animated characters on-screen sorta like Roger Rabbit.

King of Jazz has a cartoon and an animated skit intermixed, close enough for me.

Apparently the Eclipse set, Dusan Makavejev: Free Radical has avant-garde film-making that could count.
I have never seen any of the Godzilla movies that will be in the recently announced box set, but maybe there's some animation and/or puppetry in some of those?
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Old 08-04-19, 08:41 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
I’d count Jellyfish Eyes, mostly live-action, but near constant animated characters on-screen sorta like Roger Rabbit.

King of Jazz has a cartoon and an animated skit intermixed, close enough for me.

Apparently the Eclipse set, Dusan Makavejev: Free Radical has avant-garde film-making that could count.
Thanks! Added to the list!

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
I would have just asked Trevor. Oh, look:
I have never seen any of the Godzilla movies that will be in the recently announced box set, but maybe there's some animation and/or puppetry in some of those?
To my defense, he did see the question I asked you and answered it so if I hadn't posted it at all, he wouldn't have answered! Plus, I know you've been watching the Criterion service, so figured you'd be a great resource to ask!

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Old 08-05-19, 03:27 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
Now following you back!
Thanks Travis
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Old 08-07-19, 01:17 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

I've been brainstorming which movies I want to watch this year, and I got to thinking about the Top 10 lists. Would anyone be interested in compiling their own, and making those eligible for others to view during the challenge? Would anyone be interested in other DVD Talk members' lists?
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Old 08-07-19, 10:23 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
I've been brainstorming which movies I want to watch this year, and I got to thinking about the Top 10 lists. Would anyone be interested in compiling their own, and making those eligible for others to view during the challenge? Would anyone be interested in other DVD Talk members' lists?
I would be up for putting together a list and seeing other people's lists. (I love lists!)

I just received the Ingmar Bergman's Cinema box set and am excited to delve into it. Also, I would like to watch some of the huge stack of unwatched Eclipse sets that I've acquired. (I have too many movies!)
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Old 08-07-19, 09:48 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by mrcellophane View Post
I would be up for putting together a list and seeing other people's lists. (I love lists!)

I just received the Ingmar Bergman's Cinema box set and am excited to delve into it. Also, I would like to watch some of the huge stack of unwatched Eclipse sets that I've acquired. (I have too many movies!)
Oh my Gawd am I jealous! I held that box set at Barnes and Noble during their recent sale. It felt like when Wayne Campbell held that guitar. "Oh, yes. It will be mine!"
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Old 08-09-19, 09:52 AM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
Oh my Gawd am I jealous! I held that box set at Barnes and Noble during their recent sale. It felt like when Wayne Campbell held that guitar. "Oh, yes. It will be mine!"
It's so massive and glorious! I got it from Amazon for $130 (they were price matching the B&N sale and had an addition 20% off code), and it arrived in perfect condition! Bergman was one of my first forays into art and world cinema, and his themes and aesthetic always work on me. (I have major depressive disorder which probably plays a part in how personally I feel his films.) I got into Bergman because of the Criterion Collection. I was a member of ColumbiaHouse, and they offered four Criterion discs which I got and was immediately drawn to their statement of purpose (and their numbering system). One of discs had their catalog inside, and I started with The Seventh Seal. I was hooked! Thankfully, the university library I worked at had an extensive film collection with lots of Criterion discs.
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Old 08-09-19, 10:05 PM
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Re: 2019 Criterion Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by mrcellophane View Post
It's so massive and glorious! I got it from Amazon for $130 (they were price matching the B&N sale and had an addition 20% off code), and it arrived in perfect condition! Bergman was one of my first forays into art and world cinema, and his themes and aesthetic always work on me. (I have major depressive disorder which probably plays a part in how personally I feel his films.) I got into Bergman because of the Criterion Collection. I was a member of ColumbiaHouse, and they offered four Criterion discs which I got and was immediately drawn to their statement of purpose (and their numbering system). One of discs had their catalog inside, and I started with The Seventh Seal. I was hooked! Thankfully, the university library I worked at had an extensive film collection with lots of Criterion discs.
Hey! I have major depressive disorder, too! *fist bump* Our paths have been similar, actually. When I participated in my first Criterion Challenge, I figured I'd scope out some Bergman since I'd heard his name in those circles. My first was Smiles of a Summer Night. I didn't fall in love with it, but I definitely recognized that this was a storyteller who could reach me. I was right! And I have often suspected that it's my depressed noggin that Bergman reaches.
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