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The Criterion Channel Unveils Launch Lineup for April

Written by on March 24, 2019 

In just two weeks, a cinematic haven will launch. After the demise of FilmStruck left cinephiles in a dark depression, The Criterion Channel has stepped up to the plate to launch their own separate service coming to the U.S. and Canada on Apple TV, Amazon Fire, Roku, iOS, and Android and Android TV devices. Now, after giving us a taste of what is to come with their Movies of the Week, they’ve unveiled the staggeringly great lineup for their first month.

Along with the Criterion Collection and Janus Films’ library of 1,000 feature films, 350 shorts, and 3,500 supplementary features–including trailers, introductions, behind-the-scenes documentaries, interviews, video essays, commentary tracks, and rare archival footage–the service will also house films from Sony Pictures, Warner Bros., Paramount Pictures, Metro Goldwyn Mayer (MGM), Lionsgate, IFC Films, Kino Lorber, Cohen Media, Milestone Film and Video, Oscilloscope, Cinema Guild, Strand Releasing, Shout Factory, Film Movement, and Grasshopper Films, with more to come.

Films from Chantal Akerman, Luis Buñuel, Jane Campion, Jean Cocteau, Joel and Ethan Coen, Carl Dreyer, Federico Fellini, John Ford, Samuel Fuller, Jean-Luc Godard, Alfred Hitchcock, Shohei Imamura, Jim Jarmusch, Akira Kurosawa, David Lean, Mike Leigh, David Lynch, Kenji Mizoguchi, Mikio Naruse, Yasujiro Ozu, Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, Kelly Reichardt, Susan Seidelman, Ousmane Sembène, Paolo Sorrentino, Jacques Tati, François Truffaut, Agnès Varda, Jean Vigo, Andrzej Wajda, Orson Welles, Wim Wenders, and Edward Yang, among many others, will be part of their permanent library, but they will also have frequent new additions, which they’ve now unveiled.

Some gems include Bi Gan’s Kaili Blues (and his short The Poet and Singer), John Woo’s Last Hurrah for Chivalry, Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s Eight Hours Don’t Make a Day, Barbara Loden’s Wanda, and Abbas Kiarostami’s Taste of Cherry, plus special programs featuring David Lynch, Columbia noir films, Charles Burnett, Suso Cecchi d’Amico, Simone Signoret, Susanne Bier, and more. Criterion notes that some of these rotating thematic/special programs will available for at least 90 days (likely the majority from other non-Janus distributors), but may disappear after that, while the aforementioned library will be available continuously. We imagine The Criterion Channel’s full library won’t be unveiled until launch date when we can explore the site, but expect all the Janus Films riches we saw on FilmStruck to show up.

See their beautiful new trailer and April lineup below, with more details here. One can also subscribe by April 7 for a discounted rate.

Monday, April 8
Spotlight: Columbia Noir — Eleven dark gems from the studio that epitomized the hard-boiled essence of film noir
My Name Is Julia Ross, Joseph H. Lewis, 1945
So Dark the Night, Joseph H. Lewis, 1946
The Big Heat, Fritz Lang, 1953
Human Desire, Fritz Lang, 1954
Drive a Crooked Road, Richard Quine, 1954
Pushover, Richard Quine, 1954
Nightfall, Jacques Tourneur, 1957
The Burglar, Paul Wendkos, 1957
The Lineup, Don Siegel, 1958
Murder by Contract, Irving Lerner, 1958
Experiment in Terror, Blake Edwards, 1962

Mildred Pierce, directed by Michael Curtiz, 1945 – Criterion Collection Edition #860

Tuesday, April 9
Short + Feature: Yearbook and Y tu mamá también — A short film by Bernardo Britto paired with Alfonso Cuarón’s beloved road movie

Wednesday, April 10
Screenwriter: Suso Cecchi d’Amico — Seven classics from the Italian screenwriter behind some of the greatest films of all time
Bicycle Thieves, Vittorio De Sica, 1948
Senso, Luchino Visconti, 1954
Le amiche, Michelangelo Antonioni, 1955
Le notti bianche, Luchino Visconti, 1957
Big Deal on Madonna Street, Mario Monicelli, 1958
Rocco and His Brothers, Luchino Visconti, 1960
Salvatore Giuliano, Francesco Rosi, 1962

Wanda, directed by Barbara Loden, 1970 — Criterion Collection Edition #965

Thursday, April 11
Directed by David Lynch — Visions of terror and salvation from contemporary cinema’s master of the surreal
Eraserhead, 1977
The Elephant Man, 1980
Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me, 1992
Mulholland Dr., 2001

Shorts:
Six Men Getting Sick, 1967
The Alphabet, 1968
The Grandmother, 1970
The Amputee Version 1, 1974
The Amputee Version 2, 1974
Premonitions Following an Evil Deed, 1995

Ace in the Hole, directed by Billy Wilder, 1951 — Criterion Collection Edition #396

Friday, April 12
Double Feature: Last Hurrah for Chivalry and The Umbrellas of Cherbourg — John Woo finds unlikely inspiration in Jacques Demy’s candy-colored musical.

Jubal, directed by Delmer Daves, 1956 — Criterion Collection Edition #656

Saturday, April 13
Saturday Matinee: Bugsy Malone —Pint-sized wise guys battle it out in this irresistible all-kid gangster spoof.

Sunday, April 14
Julie Taymor’s Adventures in Moviegoing — Our guest-programmer series returns with the acclaimed stage and screen director.
Baby Face, Alfred E. Green, 1933
Great Expectations, David Lean, 1946
Rashomon, Akira Kurosawa, 1950
Sawdust and Tinsel, Ingmar Bergman, 1953
Nights of Cabiria, Federico Fellini, 1957
The Cranes Are Flying, Mikhail Kalatozov, 1957

Monday, April 15
Eight Hours Don’t Make a Day, directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1972 — Criterion Collection Edition #946

Tuesday, April 16
Short + Feature: The Silence and Taste of Cherry — Two soul-searching Iranian films grapple with mortality

Wednesday, April 17
Directed by Susanne Bier — Three intimate and explosive dramas from an auteur specializing in emotional extremes
Brothers, 2004
After the Wedding, 2006
In a Better World, 2010

Thursday, April 18
Kaili Blues — Bi Gan introduces his audacious feature debut, along with a related short film The Poet and Singer.

Friday, April 19
Double Feature: Hamlet and To Be or Not to Be — Laurence Olivier’s Shakespeare adaptation meets Ernst Lubitsch’s wartime farce.

Saturday, April 20
Saturday Matinee: The Kid — Charlie Chaplin pairs his lovable Tramp with a child companion in one of his best-loved films.

Sunday, April 21
Meet the Filmmakers: Charles Burnett — The director of To Sleep with Anger revisits Watts with filmmaker Robert Townsend in an intimate portrait paired with a selection of his films.
My Brother’s Wedding, 1983
To Sleep with Anger, 1990
Hollywood Shuffle, Robert Townsend, 1987

Shorts
Several Friends, 1969
The Horse, 1973
When It Rains, 1995
The Final Insult, 1997
Quiet as Kept, 2007

Monday, April 22
David Simon on Paths of Glory — The creator of The Wire introduces Stanley Kubrick’s wrenching antiwar film.

Tuesday, April 23
Short + Feature: Fauve and The Wages of Fear — An Oscar-nominated short precedes Henri-Georges Clouzot’s masterful suspense film.

The Hidden Fortress, directed by Akira Kurosawa, 1958 — Criterion Collection Edition #116

Wednesday, April 24
The Virgin Suicides, directed by Sofia Coppola, 1999 — Criterion Collection Edition #920

Thursday, April 25
Killer Couples x 3 — Three couples you definitely don’t want to meet at a party
The Honeymoon Killers, Leonard Kastle, 1969
Eating Raoul, Paul Bartel, 1982
Sightseers, Ben Wheatley, 2012

Friday, April 26
Double Feature: Murder by Contract and Le samouraï — Irving Lerner’s pared-down film noir, followed by Jean-Pierre Melville’s minimalist thriller

Saturday, April 27
Saturday Matinee: Mon oncle — Jacques Tati’s first color film is a slapstick sendup of modern technology.

Sunday, April 28
Spotlight: Simone Signoret — A salute to the French actor who brought unforgettable complexity to every performance
La ronde, Max Ophuls, 1950
Casque d’or, Jacques Becker, 1952
Diabolique, Henri-Georges Clouzot, 1955
Room at the Top, Jack Clayton, 1959
Adua and her Friends, Antonio Pietrangeli, 1960
Army of Shadows, Jean-Pierre Melville, 1969
The Widow Courdec, Pierre Granier-Deferre, 1971

Monday, April 29
Observations on Film Art No. 26: The Revolutionary Subjectivity of Memories of Underdevelopment — Professor Jeff Smith picks up our monthly film-school series with a course on a Cuban classic.

Tuesday, April 30
Short + Feature: Surface Tension and News from Home — Hollis Frampton and Chantal Akerman’s experimental portraits of New York City

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