Columbia’s going to be putting out six classic films on 4K in one box set in June, and I’m worried about what this might do to me.
I have written before about the slight case of 4K-mania I dealt with in 2018 and 2019. Fed up with the limits of streaming, I began buying physical copies of movies again in 2016. By 2018 I had a big nice 4K TV, a top-of-the-line 4K Blu-ray player, and a home theater setup; it still couldn’t match going to a nice theater, but it made everything look and sound so great that I fell into a hole of buying 4K UHD Blu-rays as often as I could. Like, buying movies I hadn’t even seen before, just because they were on sale and I heard they might be okay. It was a problem, but one I was gradually able to get under control. (Not until after buying Air Force One on 4K, for some reason.)
I beat it. Now I only buy movies I actually know are worth owning, and that aren’t already streaming in 4K on one of the too-many services I have subscriptions to. Still, I keep a mental list of all the classic films I’d love to one day own in the format, and I’ll be able to scratch a half-dozen off once the Columbia Classics 4K Ultra HD Collection is out on June 16.
Here’s what’s included in the box, which is perfectly timed for Father’s Day or graduation gifts.
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
Lawrence of Arabia
Dr. Strangelove Or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb
A League of Their Own
Expect all of them in 4K resolution, with HDR10 and various advanced audio formats. Lawrence of Arabia, Gandhi, A League of Their Own and Jerry Maguire have also all been fully restored from the original negatives. And yes, each movie will come with a variety of extras, from commentary tracks to deleted scenes to various featurettes.
Lawrence of Arabia has been at the top of my 4K wishlist for as long as I’ve had one. David Lean’s sumptuous epic is always glorious on the big screen, and we might finally have a home version that’s just as fantastic. The other films are all classics, too, of course, and the range should please any serious movie-lover.
The Columbia Classics 4K Ultra HD Collection will be out on June 16 in a limited-edition run of just under 8000 copies. It comes with an 80 page hardbound book that covers the making of each film and features a new essay from historian Julie Kirgo. It also includes a copy of Columbia’s 50th anniversary special from 1975, which has never been officially released before. It’s shaping up to be an amazing treat for film fans, and exactly the kind of thing that might reignite my passion for buying Blu-rays.