Criterion: Vampyr & High and Low in July

**Criterion** has announced re-issues with a July 22nd release date for two films that were released on DVD exactly 10 years ago. Vampyr (1932) and High and Low (1963) will each have new, restored high-definition transfers with improved English subtitles. Each 2-Disc set will retail for $39.95, but are available at for only $29.99. More details below.

Vampyr (1932)
With Vampyr, Danish filmmaker Carl Theodor Dreyer's brilliance at achieving mesmerizing atmosphere and austere, profoundly unsettling imagery (as in The Passion of Joan of Arc and Day of Wrath) was for once applied to the horror genre. Yet the result—concerning an occult student assailed by various supernatural haunts and local evildoers at an inn outside Paris—is nearly unclassifiable, a host of stunning camera and editing tricks and densely layered sounds creating a mood of dreamlike terror. With its roiling fogs, ominous scythes, and foreboding echoes, Vampyr is one of cinema's great nightmares.

NOTE: Vampyr is presented in its original aspect ratio of 1.19:1, a European format that is narrower than a 1.33:1 image. The black bars along the side of the screen, called "pillarboxing," are normal for this format, and will be even more pronounced on widescreen televisions.

  • Audio commentary featuring film scholar Tony Rayns
  • Carl Th. Dreyer (1966), a documentary by J├Ârgen Roos chronicling Dreyer's career
  • Visual essay by scholar Casper Tybjerg on Dreyer's influences in creating Vampyr
  • A 1958 radio broadcast of Dreyer reading an essay about filmmaking
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring new essays by Mark Le Fanu and Kim Newman, Martin Koerber on the restoration, and an archival interview with producer and star Nicolas de Gunzburg, as well as a book featuring Dreyer and Christen Jul's original screenplay and Sheridan Le Fanu 1871 story "Carmilla," a source for the film

High and Low (1963)
Toshiro Mifune is unforgettable as Kingo Gondo, a wealthy industrialist whose family becomes the target of a cold-blooded kidnapper in Akira Kurosawa’s highly influential domestic drama and police procedural High and Low (Tengoko to jigoku). Adapting Ed McBain's detective novel King's Ransom, Kurosawa moves effortlessly from compelling race-against-time thriller to exacting social commentary, creating a diabolical treatise on class and contemporary Japanese society. Criterion is proud to present High and Low in this new high-definition digital transfer.

NOTE: This release has a new, restored high-definition digital transfer, with newly restored original four-track surround sound. As well as a new and improved English subtitle translation.

  • New audio commentary by Akira Kurosawa scholar Stephen Prince
  • A 37-minute documentary on the making of High and Low, created as part of the Toho Masterworks series Akira Kurosawa: It Is Wonderful to Create
  • Rare archival interview with Toshiro Mifune
  • New video interview with actor Tsutomu Yamazaki, who plays the kidnapper
  • Theatrical trailers from Japan and the U.S.
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring a new essay by critic Geoffrey O’Brien and a reprinted essay by Japanese film scholar Donald Richie

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