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  • Writer's pictureCarrie Specht

Criterion Collection Announces Lineup for its Channel, Launching on April 8

Since 1984, the Criterion Collection has been dedicated to publishing important classic and contemporary films from around the world in editions that offer the highest technical quality and award-winning, original supplements. Now, they have their own channel, and are charing everything they've ever presented in the admirable collection - a collection of excellence. Criterion has maintained its pioneering commitment to presenting each film as its maker would want it seen, in state-of-the-art restorations with special features designed to encourage repeated watching and deepen the viewer’s appreciation of the art of film.

The Criterion Collection has announced the initial lineup for its new streaming service, the Criterion Channel. The new service launches April 8, 2019 with a calendar of thematic programming that includes an eclectic mix of classic and contemporary films from Hollywood and around the world, which are not available anywhere else. It's certainly exclusive, and wonderfully so. If you know Criterion then I don't need to convince you. But, if you don't know Criterion then you're in for a nice surprise. It's the ultimate streaming service for the ardent cinephile - and emerging fans too.

The Criterion Channel will host the Criterion Collection, which is excellent enough, but also the Janus Films’ celebrated library of more than 1,000 classic and contemporary films (fancy, fancy). Even more interesting is that he new channel will feature a constantly refreshed selection of films. And the variety of the wide array of studio and independent licensors id impressive. The studio resources include 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. Additional licensors will most certainly be added, and will be so as they accumulate in the coming months.

The specs: the channel will available on desktop browsers as well as through apps for Apple TV, Amazon Fire, Roku, iOS, and Android and Android TV devices. As an extra incentive, if you sign up by April 7 you will enjoy an extended, 30-day free trial (starting April 8), reduced fees for as long as you remain subscribed, and immediate access to a new pre-launch, members-only Movie of the Week every Wednesday between now and the April 8 launch. Now, that is tempting, indeed.

The April lineup kicks off with a fun spotlight on “Columbia Noir”. The series features eleven hard-boiled, Film Noir classics from Columbia Pictures, such as gems from Fritz Lang, Jacques Tourneur, Don Siegel, and Blake Edwards. There's also an eclectic series on the innovative. “Directed by David Lynch,” is the first of these retrospectives. Four features and a selection of shorts reveal the creative aspects of the unique filmmaker. Spotlighted in thematic programming or not, the films in the permanent streaming library will be continuously available to all Criterion Channel subscribers at all times. All films will be available for a minimum of 90 days unless otherwise noted.

The Criterion Channel is just the remedy for those still reeling over the sudden absence of FilmStruck. And the perfect solution for those wanting something a bit more eclectic than the other platforms, whose roster of classic movies continue to dwindle into annihilation. Take a chance on the Criterion Channel and you'll be delighted to find a new home for classic films.

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