Channel Calendars

The Criterion Channel’s January 2020 Lineup

Inside Criterion / On the Channel — Dec 31, 2019

As the 2010s come to a close, we’re welcoming a new decade on the Criterion Channel with a look back at how movies from half a century ago imagined the future in our Seventies Sci-Fi series, featuring strange journeys to outer space, visions of dystopia, and modern classics by Stanley Kubrick, John Carpenter, George Lucas, and other masters of the genre. Also playing are major tributes to art-cinema legends Luis Buñuel and Jane Campion, a centenary celebration of Federico Fellini, breakthrough work by the brilliant young filmmakers Chloé Zhao and Khalik Allah, a new documentary about Paul Schrader by Alex Ross Perry, and much more!

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* indicates programming available starting February 1

** indicates programming available only in the U.S.

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 1

Directed by Susan Seidelman
Featuring a new introduction by the filmmaker
Susan Seidelman first made her mark with her vividly gritty debut, Smithereens (the first American independent film to screen in competition at Cannes), and has continued crafting offbeat comedies built around memorably messy, idiosyncratic women. 

Short films: And You Act Like One Too (1976), Yours Truly, Andrea G. Stern (1979). Features: Smithereens (1982), Desperately Seeking Susan (1985), Cookie (1989),  She-Devil (1989).

THURSDAY, JANUARY 2

From the Archive: Taxi Driver
With a 1986 audio commentary featuring director Martin Scorsese and screenwriter Paul Schrader
Robert De Niro gives one of his most riveting performances in this powerful study of a dangerously fractured psyche let loose in grimy 1970s New York City.

3 Faces
Streaming premiere
The latest from Iranian metafiction master Jafar Panahi is a slyly comic, quietly revelatory tale of community and solidarity under the eye of oppression.

FRIDAY, JANUARY 3

Double Feature: Preach It!
Elmer Gantry and Wise Blood
Beware of false prophets in a pair of daring adaptations of American literary masterworks.

SATURDAY, JANUARY 4

Saturday Matinee: 12 Angry Men 
A behind-closed-doors look at the American legal system that is as riveting as it is spare, Sidney Lumet’s electrifying, iconic adaptation of Reginald Rose’s teleplay stars Henry Fonda as the dissenting member on a heated jury.

SUNDAY, JANUARY 5

Seventies Sci-Fi
Streaming for one month only!

The maverick spirit that defined the New Hollywood of the 1970s resulted in a wave of fascinating, wild, and often way-out-there science-fiction head trips that carried on the radical experimentation of the sixties while paving the way for the blockbuster boom of the eighties. Directors like Stanley Kubrick, George Lucas, John Carpenter, David Cronenberg, and George Miller pushed the boundaries of the genre with visionary space operas, chilling dystopian freak-outs, and mind-bending speculative thrillers that examined the era’s anxieties about technology, consumerism, overpopulation, and environmental collapse. This expansive survey offers a deep dive into a uniquely fertile moment when filmmakers gazed towards the future with awe and terror.

Featuring: No Blade of Grass (Cornel Wilde, 1970), A Clockwork Orange (Stanley Kubrick, 1971), The Omega Man (Boris Sagal, 1971), THX 1138 (George Lucas, 1971), Z.P.G. (Michael Campus, 1972)**, Westworld (Michael Crichton, 1973), Soylent Green (Richard Fleischer, 1973), Dark Star (John Carpenter, 1974), The Terminal Man (Mike Hodges, 1974), Rollerball (Norman Jewison, 1975), A Boy and His Dog (L. Q. Jones, 1975), Death Race 2000 (Paul Bartel, 1975), Shivers (David Cronenberg, 1975), The Ultimate Warrior (Robert Clouse, 1975), Logan’s Run (Michael Anderson, 1976), God Told Me To (Larry Cohen, 1976), Demon Seed (Donald Cammell, 1977), Mad Max (George Miller, 1979)

MONDAY, JANUARY 6

Sweet Smell of Success (Alexander Mackendrick, 1957)
Criterion Collection Edition #555

TUESDAY, JANUARY 7

Short + Feature: Family Feuds
The Hypnotist and The Little Foxes
Home is where the betrayal is in a catty Bette Davis classic and a gloriously camp melodrama homage.

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 8

Directed by Agnès Jaoui
In her wry, sharply observed studies of class and social relationships, actor, writer, and director Agnès Jaoui zeroes in on the follies and foibles of the French bourgeoisie and the neuroses and power plays that consume her hilariously self-absorbed characters.

Featuring: The Taste of Others (2000), Look at Me (2004)**

THURSDAY, JANUARY 9

Three by the Dardenne Brothers
Urgent, unembellished, and uncompromising, these realistic tales set on the margins of society unfold like taut thrillers of the everyday, displaying the searing emotional intensity and deeply felt social conscience that have made Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne among the most lauded filmmakers working today. 

Featuring: La promesse (1996), L’enfant (2005), The Kid with a Bike (2011)

FRIDAY, JANUARY 10

Double Feature: She’s a Femme Fatale
Pandora’s Box and Something Wild
A legendary Louise Brooks performance inspires Jonathan Demme’s freewheeling screwball joyride.

SATURDAY, JANUARY 11

Saturday Matinee: Zazie dans le métro
A brash and precocious ten-year-old (Catherine Demongeot) comes to Paris for a whirlwind weekend with her rakish uncle in Louis Malle’s audacious comedy, packed wall-to-wall with visual gags, editing tricks, and effects.

SUNDAY, JANUARY 12

Directed by Luis Buñuel
Featuring a 1964 profile of Buñuel from the series Cinéastes de notre temps
One of cinema’s great iconoclasts and mischief makers, Spanish master Luis Buñuel combined surrealist non sequiturs with taboo-shattering attacks on the bourgeoisie, the church, and social hypocrisy to create some of the most incendiary films of the twentieth century. 

Featuring: L’age d’or (1930), Robinson Crusoe (1954), Death in the Garden (1956), Viridiana (1961), The Exterminating Angel (1962), Diary of a Chambermaid (1964), Simon of the Desert (1965), Belle de jour (1967), The Milky Way (1969), Tristana (1970), The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (1972), The Phantom of Liberty (1974), That Obscure Object of Desire (1977)

MONDAY, JANUARY 13

Observations on Film Art No. 34: Vampyr—The Genre Film as Experimental Film
Carl Theodor Dreyer’s haunting 1932 masterpiece has long occupied a singular place in film history, resting somewhere at the intersection of horror, avant-garde cinema, and waking nightmare. In this episode of Observations on Film Art, Professor David Bordwell explores how Dreyer managed to honor the conventions of horror cinema while at the same time breaking the boundaries of the genre wide open through his experimental use of sound, shadows, and camera movement.

TUESDAY, JANUARY 14

Short + Feature: Colt Classics
Seide and The Black Stallion
There’s no better friend than a horse in these two moving coming-of-age films.

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 15

Songs My Brothers Taught Me
The stunning feature debut from Chloé Zhao (The Rider) is a gorgeous, elegiac vision of contemporary Native American struggle and resilience.

THURSDAY, JANUARY 16

Betty Blue (Jean-Jacques Beineix, 1986)
Criterion Collection Edition #1002

A Dog’s Life
Dogs have their day in these tail-wagging tributes to our furry companions, featuring faithful four-legged friends, killer canines, telepathic pooches, and more. 

Including: A Dog’s Life (Charles Chaplin, 1918), Umberto D. (Vittorio De Sica, 1952), Good-bye, My Lady (William A. Wellman, 1956), A Boy and His Dog (L. Q. Jones, 1975), Baxter (Jérôme Boivin, 1989), Le quattro volte (Michelangelo Frammartino, 2010), Heart of a Dog (Laurie Anderson, 2015)

FRIDAY, JANUARY 17

Double Feature: Poison Pens
The Letter and Le Corbeau
Explosive letters have deadly consequences in these dark tales of write and wrong.

SATURDAY, JANUARY 18

Starring Danny Kaye
A beloved, one-of-a-kind entertainer who honed his animated, rapid-fire performance style on the Borscht Belt circuit, Brooklyn-born comedian, actor, dancer, and singer Danny Kaye lit up the screen with his exuberant charm and inventive wit. Perfect for the whole family, this selection of classic Kaye is a riotous testament to a true original whose talent continues to dazzle and delight. 

Featuring: Up in Arms (Elliott Nugent, 1944), Wonder Man (H. Bruce Humberstone, 1945), The Kid from Brooklyn (Norman Z. McLeod, 1946), The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (Norman Z. McLeod, 1947), A Song Is Born (Howard Hawks, 1948), Hans Christian Andersen (Charles Vidor, 1952), The Court Jester (Melvin Frank and Norman Panama, 1956)


Saturday Matinee: The Court Jester

Danny Kaye delivers an antic, tongue-twisting tour de force in this uproarious swashbuckling satire.

SUNDAY, JANUARY 19

Starring Burt Lancaster
Capable of projecting both powerful physicality and gentle sensitivity, Burt Lancaster brought his megawatt star power to a wide array of unforgettable roles, embodying heroes, villains, and morally complex everymen with an innate dignity and gravitas. Moving between Hollywood blockbusters and independent passion projects—many made through his own production company—Lancaster left behind an extraordinary body of work that reflects both his penchant for risk-taking roles and his commitment to progressive social causes. 

Featuring: Brute Force (Jules Dassin, 1947), I Walk Alone (Byron Haskin, 1947), Sorry, Wrong Number (Anatole Litvak, 1948), Come Back, Little Sheba (Daniel Mann, 1952)**, From Here to Eternity (Fred Zinnemann, 1953), The Rose Tattoo (Daniel Mann, 1955)**, The Rainmaker (Joseph Anthony, 1956), Sweet Smell of Success (Alexander Mackendrick, 1957), Separate Tables (Delbert Mann, 1958), Elmer Gantry (Richard Brooks, 1960), Birdman of Alcatraz (John Frankenheimer, 1962), The Train (John Frankenheimer, 1964), Seven Days in May (John Frankenheimer, 1964), The Professionals (Richard Brooks, 1966), The Swimmer (Frank Perry, 1968), Conversation Piece (Luchino Visconti, 1974), Atlantic City (Louis Malle, 1980), Local Hero (Bill Forsyth, 1983)

MONDAY, JANUARY 20

Creative Marriages
Celebrating Federico Fellini’s 100th birthday!
Cinema’s great husband-and-wife carnival act, Italian maestro Federico Fellini and actress Giulietta Masina gave birth to a new form of filmic expression that blended earthy realism with extravagant flights of surrealist fancy. These twin masterworks document the evolving creative and personal relationship between two indispensable artists whose legacies are forever entwined. 

Featuring: La strada (Federico Fellini, 1954), Juliet of the Spirits (Federico Fellini, 1965)

TUESDAY, JANUARY 21

Short + Feature: Guilty Pleasures
Good Intentions and Death of a Cyclist
A stop-motion thriller and a searing Spanish noir explore the dynamics of crime and self-punishment.

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 22

Directed by Jane Campion
One of contemporary cinema’s most singular and captivating voices, Jane Campion brings a piercing psychological insight and radiantly expressive visual style to her intense, revelatory explorations of female subjectivity and desire. After becoming the first woman awarded the Palme d’Or at Cannes and only the second to be nominated for an Academy Award for best director, she has continued to fearlessly probe the most intimate dimensions of women’s experiences in ambitious, uncompromising films. 

Shorts: An Exercise in Discipline: Peel (1982), Passionless Moments (1983), A Girl’s Own Story (1983). Features: Two Friends (1986), Sweetie (1989), An Angel at My Table (1990), The Piano (1993), The Portrait of a Lady (1996), Holy Smoke (1999), In the Cut (2003).

THURSDAY, JANUARY 23

Four Films by Khalik Allah
Featuring a new interview with the filmmaker
Growing out of his acclaimed work as a photographer documenting the lives of homeless addicts in New York, Khalik Allah’s visionary films are dreamlike drifts through the margins of society—gritty and sublime portraits of the disenfranchised and dispossessed that, in their infinite compassion and philosophical insight, achieve an almost spiritual transcendence. 

Featuring: Urban Rashomon (2013), Antonyms of Beauty (2013), Field Niggas (2014), Black Mother (2018)

Panique (Julien Duvivier, 1946)

Criterion Collection Edition #955

FRIDAY, JANUARY 24

Double Feature: Jackpot!
Bay of Angels and Atlantic City
Jacques Demy and Louis Malle spin the roulette wheel of fate in these tales of love and gambling.

SATURDAY, JANUARY 25

Saturday Matinee: Great Expectations
One of the great translations of literature into film, David Lean brings Charles Dickens’s masterpiece to robust, beautifully photographed life.

SUNDAY, JANUARY 26

Meet the Filmmakers: Paul Schrader
A titan of the American cinema who emerged from the ranks of the 1970s movie brats with his era-defining screenplay for Taxi Driver, writer-director Paul Schrader has pursued a defiantly singular vision in his provocative explorations of guilt and salvation in a soul-sick world. In this episode of Meet the Filmmakers, director Alex Ross Perry (Her Smell, Listen Up Philip) visits the ever-iconoclastic auteur on the set of his acclaimed latest film, First Reformed, where Schrader reflects on the highs and lows of his legendary career. 

Directed by Paul Schrader
One of American cinema’s most provocative moral philosophers, Paul Schrader has, for over forty years, probed the guilty soul of the modern world in a relentless search for existential meaning. Grappling with weighty themes of faith, violence, sin, and redemption, Schrader’s films are fascinating windows into his personal obsessions. 

Featuring: Taxi Driver (Martin Scorsese, 1976), Hardcore (1979), American Gigolo (1980)*, Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (1985), Patty Hearst (1988), The Comfort of Strangers (1990)*, Light Sleeper (1992)*, Auto Focus (2002)**, Adam Resurrected (2008)

MONDAY, JANUARY 27

The Fugitive Kind (Sidney Lumet, 1960)
Criterion Collection Edition #515

TUESDAY, JANUARY 28

Short + Feature: Prime Cuts
Carving Magic and Delicatessen
A meat lover’s special of atomic-age kitsch and surreal French whimsy.

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 29

Fat Girl (Catherine Breillat, 2001)
Criterion Collection Edition #259

THURSDAY, JANUARY 30

Until the End of the World (Wim Wenders, 1991)
Criterion Collection Edition #1007

FRIDAY, JANUARY 31

Double Feature: One Play, Two Masterpieces
The Lower Depths (Jean Renoir) and The Lower Depths (Akira Kurosawa)
Jean Renoir and Akira Kurosawa offer searing visions of life on
the bottom rung of society.