Films that NEED commentary tracks

Discussion in 'DVD' started by jra166, Jul 4, 2012.

  1. jra166

    jra166 Extra

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    Lately I have enjoyed listening to the commentary tracks in my DVD collection more so than actually watching the movies, especially my film noir and classic film collection. I'm sure this is just a phase. But as I browse my collection, there are some films that I truly wish had a commentary track and I am actually kind of shocked they don't. Most of these are early releases of popular films before commentaries became almost a "standard" special feature.
    My top 5 in Need of a Commentary track are:
    To Have and Have Not
    The Big Sleep
    The Bad and the Beautiful
    In a Lonely Place
    The Postman Always Rings Twice
    I was curious which films that forum members miss having commentary tracks on, and would love to have a commentary track on a future possibly Blu-ray release. I'm assuming of course that commentary tracks are as enjoyable to others as they are to myself.
     
  2. Robin9

    Robin9 Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2006
    Messages:
    2,801
    Likes Received:
    830
    Real Name:
    Robin
    Different people have different reactions to commentary tracks. I find most of them boring and useless. A good one however is beyond value. Those by John Frankenheimer were all particularly good.
    As for the films listed above, who should do the commentary?
     
  3. cineMANIAC

    cineMANIAC Cinematographer
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2008
    Messages:
    2,056
    Likes Received:
    289
    Location:
    New York City
    Real Name:
    Luis
    Commentary tracks these days are pretty much a waste of time - most of them are just the producers patting themselves on their backs. I find commentaries featuring contemporary actors are the worst since they talk about everything EXCEPT the film in question. I've enjoyed very few chat tracks - most of 'em were on independent horror flicks like HELL NIGHT. "Virtual" tracks that feature "commentary" from deceased actors can be interesting even if the track itself is just made up of old interviews and such, like Warners did for THE GETAWAY. It's too bad Charles Bronson is dead - I would've loved to hear from him.
     
  4. jra166

    jra166 Extra

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    Maybe I'm just stuck in the past. I love the history behind the old films from historians and film professors. Feels like I'm in a class learning about classic hollywood. I especially enjoy those commentaries by:
    Eddie Mueller
    Alain Silver
    James Ursini
    Glenn Erikson
    Drew Casper
    Richard Schickel
    Rudy Behlmer
    As for modern films, I enjoy listening to screenwriters, directors, and directors of Photography most. I love the technical talk of certain shots, dialogue, and how the film was actually created. I could really care less about listening to Actors, unless they had a role in making the film. Stallone on the Rocky commentary was quite enjoyable.
     
  5. Berkshires

    Berkshires Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2010
    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    1
    I agree with you 100%. All the names you mention have done some great commentary work. As a film noir fan, I'm especially grateful for the tracks by Eddie Mueller and Glenn Erikson. Drew Casper can be a trip, but he's usually very entertaining. And let's not forget Roger Ebert's terrific work on Citizen Kane and Casablanca.
    As for your earlier point, I'll cast another vote for To Have And Have Not, The Big Sleep, and Postman. And if I might add another title to the wish list, how about The Magnificent Ambersons?
    Boring, useless, waste of time? A few. But most commentaries in my collection have been very enjoyable to listen to. It's like sitting in film class again.
     
  6. Charles Smith

    Charles Smith Extremely Talented Member
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    Messages:
    5,185
    Likes Received:
    1,164
    Location:
    Nor'east
    Real Name:
    Charles Smith
    Count me in as one who loves the INFORMATIVE commentary tracks such as those by the people referenced above. New ones are great, too, as long as they aren't puff pieces. I appreciate being talked to seriously, as an adult, and actually being taught something by people who know film. The inclusion of commentaries and other features that do this will always increase the value of a DVD or BLU release for me.

    BTW, Criterion's Magnificent Amberons laserdisc has a commentary by Robert Carringer which, if I'm remembering it correctly, is as informative and delightful as any.
     

Share This Page