2013 is not only Warner Bros Pictures’ 90th anniversary as a studio, but also could be considered the Year of WB DVD Collections. The studio is putting their best films out in new collections, each geared to cover a specific genre or topic. In stores on January 29th – timed to coincide with the awards season – is the 20 Film Collection: Best Pictures DVD set. The 20 film set is divided up into three subsets based on the year of release, with the third set titled The New Classics and featuring the studio’s most recent Best Picture winners: Martin Scorsese’s The Departed, Clint Eastwood’s Million Dollar Baby, and Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.
It’s fascinating to look back over not only the studio’s history but the history of film with these 20 Best Picture winners. The bonus features on each disc are bare-bones, however the movies themselves are what cinephiles would be picking up this collection to view. Most individual films in the set come with a commentary track, but there are a few that provide more than the basic extra material. Grand Hotel offers a documentary as well as theater announcements; Around the World in 80 Days has a commentary, outtakes, and newsreels; An American in Paris includes rare interviews and commentary; and Driving Miss Daisy has a commentary and three featurettes.
The Best Pictures collection also includes a 20 page booklet with one paragraph descriptions and trivia on each of the Oscar-winning films.
– Reviewed by Rebecca Murray
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