Tis the season

Star Trek Motion Picture Collection
The New Generation stuff is ass, but if I didn't already own it, I would have happily shelled out $38.88 [!] for this box's 2-disk sets of its six [OK, three] great original-cast movies. [I'll never understand how certain online vendors make any money.] Anyway, I'm a big fan of the first movie's stately, leaden 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY-like vibe and what a complete prick Kirk is in the story. [Did I really just use the word vibe? Jeezus.] If STAR TREK: PHASE TWO had been had been narratively driven as much by office politicking and back-stabbing -- Kirk fucking over whomever and whatever he has to in order to retain the helm of the Enterprise, which really is what consumes his thoughts and energy for the entire Motion Picture -- as the original series was driven by science-fiction concepts and metaphorical sociopolitical commentaries, that show would have whipped some blue space-camel ass. [I also treasure movies IV and VI, and while I like THE WRATH OF KHAN, it is a bit overrated.]

The Billy Wilder Collection
If, like me, you suffer from an irrational hatred for Wilder, this set is your best shot at a cure. It's not perfect but it does a respectable job of encompassing Wilder's broad range of interests and subject matter -- the film noir SUNSET BOULEVARD, the war drama STALAG 17, and the romantic comedy SABRINA -- and there's no Jack Lemmon or Marilyn Monroe, which is nice. [And then, when/if you're absolutely sure you're ready for ACE IN THE HOLE ...]

The World War II Collection
It's still unfortunate that Steven Spielberg eventually matured enough to want to make movies with a moral compass other than the inherent rules of movie genres, but there's something to this movie that I still can't put my finger on. I've not seen the PRICE FOR PEACE documentary yet, but I remember quite enjoying SHOOTING WAR: WORLD WAR II COMBAT CAMERAMEN. By the way, I would happily buy RYAN again if the DVD had a commentary track by John Milius.