Under the Covers #647: ON THE WATERFRONT (dir. Elia Kazan) 1954

"Hey, you wanna hear my philosophy of life? Do it to him before he does it to you."

to imagine that The Criterion Collection has kept their brand strong across 647 titles in the dvd era, and they’re *still* releasing stone-cold classics like On the Waterfront… pretty neat. Elia Kazan’s mid-century masterpiece instantly becomes one of the cornerstones of Criterion’s line-up, and — holding this thing in your hands — there’s simply no doubt that this is the film’s definitive release. it’s presented with 3 different aspect-ratios and a monster load of special features, but the whole thing comes together under the unified beauty of Sean Phillips’ mournfully muted illustrations, which immaculately speaks to the tension between the film’s hard lots and soft hearts. or maybe i’m just a sucker for this grey / blue color-scheme, Phillips’ pen dimensionalizing these iconic characters of the american cinema with myth and quiet heroism. amazing stuff.

also, i kinda dig the Harry Potter thing that Brando has going on in that 2nd photo.

Criterion will release ON THE WATERFRONT on 2/19/2013.

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