Review by Michael Jacobson

When Warner Bros. first introduced the films of Stanley Kubrick on DVD to coincide with the theatrical release of his last film, Eyes Wide Shut, fans were excited and eager...and almost as quickly, bitter and disappointed.  In their obvious rush to capitalize on the great director's passing and the debut of his final movie, the original collection marked some of the worst use of the DVD medium collectors had seen...and this from a studio long known as the format's greatest advocate.

These transfers were shoddy, the prints ranged from mediocre to horrid, the discs were by and large featureless...and worse, Warner dared to lay the blame at Kubrick's feet, claiming that these transfers had been approved for video by him.   Yes, they were...some fifteen years prior, and when there was no such thing as DVD.

However, with the recent release of the new Stanley Kubrick Directors Series set from Warner, fans can once again breathe easy.  While the matter of why the studio couldn't serve these titles correctly the first time around will never be resolved, at least they did the job right the second time.  Watching these films on digitally restored discs with new 5.1 sound mixes is like seeing them for the first time.

This set also boasts new special editions of the Warner Kubrick titles (Barry Lyndon isn't included this time around), and that makes for much more enjoyable home viewing experiences.  In other words, if you have the original set, feel free to give it away...this is Kubrick the way it was meant to be seen, including at long last the unrated, uncensored version of Eyes Wide Shut.

Click on our links to read our full-length reviews of the individual titles in the set:

2001: A Space Odyssey
A Clockwork Orange
The Shining
Full Metal Jacket
Eyes Wide Shut
Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures

Also, be sure to check out our special page:  2001 FAQ!

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