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Popcorn Flix

by Shawn Spitler

Created 06/13/17

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The Criterion Collection can appear to be saturated with unrelatable art house fluff. But dig deep (especially into their older, often "out of print" selections) and you'll find a smattering of fun titles you'll enjoy turning your brain off to watch. So pop the corn and douse it with butter, here we go!

  • "Dead or alive, you're coming with me!" It's not hard for me to believe RoboCop is part of the Collection but this cult classic is in desperate need of Criterion's Blu-ray treatment. For now I'll settle for their no-frills DVD.

  • There was a time when Michael Bay wasn't synonymous with ruining the childhood memories of adult nerds with his remakes of cartoon dueling robots. And yes, there was a time when critics and even the Criterion Collection thought he might rise to become something other than what he did, and Armageddon's inclusion into the Collection is proof he could have been a contender.

  • I find it unbelievable that "Bloody Sam" Peckinpah has only one film in Criterion's collection, while Michael Bay has somehow walked away with two. Regardless, The Rock has become something of a guilty pleasure of mine.

  • While we're on the subject of Peckinpah, let's give it up for this inclusion that'll have you feeling the blood pumping through your ears.

  • Is John Woo the Asian Michael Bay or is it the other way around? Either way, Woo's films deserve to be updated and included in Criterion's Blu-ray collection.

  • Before Criterion reached double digits on their spinal numbers they had already included their second John Woo flick. I understand their priorities have shifted, but it's time for them to refocus their attention to some more of these action movies if you ask me.

  • A true classic in every sense of the word. Rob Reiner's first outing as a feature film director stands the test of time and continues to be among his best films. Criterion had it right when they picked this flick to be the 12th in their collection.

  • Thrillers aren't my thing, but The Silence of the Lambs is a masterpiece worth enjoying by the late Jon Demme.

  • I'm just as confused by this movie as the next guy, but it's one heck of a ride!

  • Speaking of Terry Gilliam, Monty Python's Life of Brian is a masterclass in comedy. It never gets old!

  • I'm a sucker for samurais, and Yojimbo is the penultimate samurai classic. Kurosawa literally birthed an entire genre single handedly with this film: the Spaghetti Western. For the uninitiated, a Spaghetti Western is an Italian made Western; think A Fist Full of Dollars (the Western remake of Yojimbo), The Good the Bad and the Ugly, etc.

  • You can't bring up Yojimbo without including its sequel, Sanjuro. They are two pees in a pod. If you're looking for a piece of trivia, For a Few Dollars More was the Spaghetti Western remake of Sanjuro.

  • Once upon a time I was madly in love with all things Kevin Smith. Chasing Amy was his first attempt at making a comedy without the sole of a fart joke. I'd say it's inclusion in the Criterion Collection means he did a pretty good job at it.

  • Oh yes they did! Just watch it. It's a good old fashioned popcorn flick!

  • From the man who brought you The Shining comes this early gem of swords and sandals. This was my second Criterion purchase back in the golden age of DVDs.

  • My first experience with a Wes Anderson hits all the right comedy notes and is worthy of a night on the couch with a bowl full of buttered Orville Redenbacher.

  • How does one describe Videodrome? One doesn't. But it's made by the director of The Fly!

  • This film needs no introduction. Alright, alright, alright!

  • A 90s Civil War flick from the director of The Hulk!

  • Yes, it's black and white. But no, it's not entirely a silent film! At the height of WWII, Chaplain spoke on film for the first time and poked fun at Hitler. Now that's funny.

  • Alright, let's get these silent comedy classics out of the way. I promise you'll love'm! Now siddown and eat your peas! I mean popcorn ...

  • This one'll have your brain twisting in all the right ways.

  • Fincher is a living auteur but The Game is one of his early flicks with a satisfying twisted ending.

  • There's over 20 of these films! And they're all deliciously fun to watch.

  • This film is probably del Toro's best, it's certainly my favorite of his.

  • The original Kaiju flick! I don't expect to see Mothra flying around Criterion's collection anytime soon, but the original is always the best.

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