282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

Discuss DVDs and Blu-rays released by Criterion and the films on them. If it's got a spine number, it's in here. Threads may contain spoilers.
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therewillbeblus
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#76 Post by therewillbeblus » Mon May 17, 2021 5:02 pm

movielocke wrote:
Mon May 17, 2021 4:51 pm
They do this from time to time. it happens and it happening certainly isn't racially motivated.
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aox
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#77 Post by aox » Mon May 17, 2021 7:07 pm

Count me in as also a little disappointed. This is a fine film, but Kanal for me is on a whole other level.

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therewillbeblus
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#78 Post by therewillbeblus » Mon May 17, 2021 7:30 pm

I think that what Bressonaire is saying is that Criterion is, like any entity, an organization with limitations including prioritization. The comments he/she/they is noting me for were about the streaming services rather than the NYT article on diversity, but that's what the comment is about: the fact that Criterion is not an omnipotent company with endless resources and attention. It's reasonable to assume that attention could be skewed one way, towards more racial diversity or Netflix/Amazon or whatever, and as an unintended consequence we may get skimped on a full box upgrade, just like it's reasonable to assume that relationships with certain studios like IFC would have unintended consequences of other titles getting pushed back. That's a much smaller scale example, but within the same internal logic of you take from one well and another is neglected. How anyone jumped to this being racially motivated from that comment that was so clearly about how systems operate on a broad scale, I have no idea.

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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#79 Post by FrauBlucher » Mon May 17, 2021 8:00 pm

I don't see what Bressonaire said as divisive or critical. To me he was stating fact that there are releases that affect the timing when other films get released. What you can say about Criterion's internal calendar is that it's fluid. Did the article push Criterion to rearrange their release calendar, probably, but I don't think it's been the first time that's happened. When they signed the Warner deal it probably bumped some other titles back

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therewillbeblus
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#80 Post by therewillbeblus » Mon May 17, 2021 8:03 pm

Exactly, though I think that what makes this more of a heavy issue now is that some changes (I'm certainly more concerned about the streaming services relationships myself) appear more likely to have some larger, potentially longer-term, consequences on the fixed places of the attention for those resources. Regardless, we've talked about that at length in other threads, and it still doesn't have anything to do with racially-motivated decision-making, which is a disingenuous term to use. The entire idea of this stressed concern is that it's rooted in passively unintentional consequences of focus on some films through active attention to others, not actively motivated ones to obstruct Criterion's ethos from the inside as an intended sacrifice towards any sole cause- so lumping the effect as racially motivated is problematic reasoning.

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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#81 Post by FrauBlucher » Mon May 17, 2021 8:18 pm

Streaming definitely changes the dynamic, especially when it comes to box sets. Criterion will pick and choose from the sets for bluray upgrades while the rest of the set can comfortably live on the streaming service, which will make many unhappy

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Matt
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#82 Post by Matt » Mon May 17, 2021 10:53 pm

Forgive these wild and wandering cries,
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dwk
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#83 Post by dwk » Mon May 17, 2021 11:09 pm

Matt wrote:
Mon May 17, 2021 10:53 pm
And why is it Criterion’s responsibility to keep Dance, Girl, Dance from rotting in its cans? Of all the films to choose as a heart-tugging example, you pick one 100% owned by one of the largest media conglomerates in the world?
It isn't, but scanning the negative was moved up only because Criterion licensed the film.

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Matt
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#84 Post by Matt » Mon May 17, 2021 11:26 pm

Confusions of a wasted youth;
Last edited by Matt on Tue May 25, 2021 5:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Never Cursed
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#85 Post by Never Cursed » Mon May 17, 2021 11:33 pm

I took Bressonaire's "fallout" as referring to the controversy surrounding the NYT article, the actual online "discourse" it sparked, not the release decisions Criterion made as a result of it (hence the separation of the "fallout from that interview" from their discussion of the Riggs/Rees/van Peebles etc releases). Indeed, I don't see any normative comment, implicit or explicit, in Bressonaire's post regarding films made by people of any demographic (beyond the benign sense in which Bressonaire prioritizes studio Hollywood films), no remark that the movies made by Black people that are now seeing release are in any way unworthy. It is entirely possible for someone to hold all of Bressonaire's opinions as expressed above and simultaneously welcome the deluxe release of those listed films, or the films of Black filmmakers in general (for instance, as one positive result of a social media/business priority kerfuffle that had both good and ill associated with it). I'm not sure I fully agree with the A to B logic of "More releases of one (arbitrary, semantic) type definitely means less releases of another type," or even by extension the initial claim that the NYT article played a role in changing these priorities, but the statement is not to me indicative of a virtue-signaling agenda on the part of its purported signaler. To call this the pernicious implicit perpetuation of white supremacist attitudes towards film strikes me as... a bit of a reach.

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therewillbeblus
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#86 Post by therewillbeblus » Mon May 17, 2021 11:33 pm

"Fallout" was used only to indicate that Becker was under fire for underperforming in releasing black films, right? The context seems appropriate unless I'm reading it wrong, but I feel like people are connecting many steps together from that post: a) Backlash on Becker, b) Becker to prioritizing films that are black over white, c) Those black films not deserving to be released if not for the fallout. I don't read it like online attacks on Affirmative Action, but simply the first step (a), which is not supporting white supremacy. I think the only reason Bressonaire put my name in there is because I've been vocal about my concerns with Netflix/Amazon, since I don't think I've ever commented on the racial piece (nor did I ever read that Becker interview..) so maybe it was a slapdash concoction of multiple ideas, but seem to indicate the broad one of prioritization rather than the details of a particularly racist agenda.

Edit: Never Cursed said it better

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Matt
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#87 Post by Matt » Tue May 18, 2021 12:04 am

Forgive them where they fail in truth,
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Never Cursed
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#88 Post by Never Cursed » Tue May 18, 2021 12:43 am

I mean, Bressonaire is 100% speculating with every word of their post (hence the first two words of it, "I suspect"), and that's part of why I don't co-sign what they're saying in it, but the issue in the post where they present speculation as fact is a different (and, I suspect, not pernicious) issue from the supposed invocation of race as a/the deciding factor in the decision to release a film. Again, I think Bressonaire's post is careful to delineate a difference between the socioeconomic consequences of the NYT interview (which they do posit as having a substantial effect upon release decisions) and the actual characteristics of the films that supposedly benefited from the consequences of the interview.

In other words, I do not think Bressonaire is leaning "on the goal of greater racial equity as a boogeyman," nor do I think there is within their posts even an unconscious depiction of racial equity as a negative force. It may have tertiary consequences that negatively effect other goals, just like any ideology (which I mean in a neutral, non-charged sense) can have when applied to society at large, and Bressonaire is I think choosing to examine one side effect resulting from Criterion's purported acceptance of racial equity that worries them as it pertains to Criterion's simultaneous focus on studio Hollywood films. I don't see that as an explicit, implicit, or unconscious rejection of the value of racial equity (and by extension, I don't think the post is in any way promoting white supremacy). Indeed, I would think it a little odd if any of us did not look at some initiative of Criterion's (studio Hollywood, the World Cinema Project, the films of Black directors, the films of Satyajit Ray, the Godzilla movies, the Olympics movies, the auteur boxsets, the French New Wave, Wes Anderson movies) and say "that's great, I just hope they also release some other thing I care about." That strikes me as both a normal sentiment, expressed in some form by everyone who obsesses over Criterions as we all do, and as being the sentiment expressed by Bressonaire in their post.

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Matt
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#89 Post by Matt » Tue May 18, 2021 1:21 am

And in thy wisdom make me wise.
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#90 Post by MichaelB » Tue May 18, 2021 3:46 am

movielocke wrote:
Mon May 17, 2021 4:51 pm
Several box sets have had titles broken out, Malle, Teshigahara, the first WCP, new Hollywood. They do this from time to time. it happens and it happening certainly isn't racially motivated.
I had a bizarre conversation with someone a few years ago who'd convinced himself that the borderline nonexistent releases of Tyler Perry films in the UK was down to racism.

Actually, there's nothing a UK distributor would have liked more than riding on the coat-tails of bona fide box office smashes, but despite quite a few attempts it became very very obvious that Perry's films are targeted at a very specific demographic, which basically doesn't exist in the UK in any commercially meaningful sense. You're not going to appreciate these films just because of matching skin tones - there's a whole raft of other cultural hurdles to clamber over too.

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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#91 Post by Bressonaire » Tue May 18, 2021 8:45 am

So many people have come to my defense and perceived my intentions accurately—and with much cooler responses—that I’m going to scrap my lengthy answer to Matt and say only that I’m glad to change fallout to upshot.

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TMDaines
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Re: 282-285 Andrzej Wajda: Three War Films

#92 Post by TMDaines » Fri May 28, 2021 7:28 am

MichaelB wrote:
Mon May 17, 2021 2:19 pm
I'm not sure why A Generation isn't, but the DVD in the big Wajda box is clearly of much more recent vintage than the master that fuelled the old Criterion disc, so it's safe to assume that there's an HD master of that as well.
It's been out on Blu-ray in Japan for years with a whole mix of other Polish films.

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