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Best DVDs of 2002
by Matt Langdon

Top Eleven DVD’s of 2002

There are a plethora of quality DVD’s released each year and it just gets tougher for critics to narrow it down to ten great ones. Given the fact that there are only a few films that many of us can really stand to watch more than once (even if we initially like them) I’ve listed 11 DVD’s that have good extras and personally, to me, are worth more than one viewing.

1) The Last Waltz (MGM)
The Band’s last concert preserved forever by Martin Scorsese and five (or was it six) great cinematographers. Looks amazing and sounds incredible. Play it loud and play it often.

2) The Complete Monterey Pop Festival (Criterion Collection)
Before Woodstock and all the other concept concerts this one in 1967 led the way. Great last performances by Hendrix, Joplin and Redding are all brought back to life by this remarkable three disc Criterion DVD

3) Griffith Masterworks (Kino)
At last a good number of film pioneer DW Griffith’s films are available in this monster set. A hefty price to be sure but you can also buy the individual discs for a little less. I recommend the Biograph Shorts.

Rashomon (Criterion Collection)
Kurosawa’s masterful 1950 film about truths lies and the examination of humanity looks better than ever. An essential foreign film that stands up after multiple viewing.

5) Contempt (Criterion Collection)
Finally available after many years Jean Luc Godard’s 1963 film about the making of a movie and the break-up of a marriage looks and sounds simply amazing.

6)The Singing in the Rain – Special Edition (Warner Home Video)
This 1952 musical of musicals finally made it on DVD in with full-fledged extras. What a glorious feeling we’re singing again.

7)The Civil War - A Film by Ken Burns (PBS Home Video)
Ken Burn’s best and most famous documentary about the war that shaped America and the course of our country forever finally gets a top notch release.

8) Monster’s Inc. (Walt Disney)
A kid’s movie that everyone, even crotchety adults, can enjoy and watch over and over again. Plus, lots of amusing extras.

9) Die Nibelungen (Kino)
Fritz Lang’s almost forgotten 1924 epic masterpiece gets top drawer treatment by Kino Video. Divided into two part Siegfried and Kriemhild’s Revenge both look good and should be seen by anyone interested in silent cinema.

10) The Simpsons: The Complete Second Season (Twentieth Century Fox)
The second season of the most popular animated TV show ever can now be appreciated on its own terms without having to wait for reruns.

11) The Adventures of Prince Achmed (Image Entertainment)
This astonishing 1925 Arabian Nights story is the first animated feature ever made. Put together by German filmmakers Lotte Reiniger and Carl Koch the animation is a serious of cutouts photographed one frame at a time. At once entertaining and historical it’s one of the discoveries of the year.

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