Regular readers know that I’m a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), which doles out the Critics’ Choice Movie Awards every year. Recently, the membership completed voting on the inaugural Critics’ Choice Best of Blu-ray competition, and the winners were announced this week. For the competition, several major studios submitted their favorite Blu-rays released between 2006 and 2011, and BFCA members voted on those titles, choosing “bests” for each year.
It’s important to note that not every studio competed in this competition and the nominees were self-selected by the movie studios. The BFCA membership then chose its favorites from among the studio-selected nominees. Because the field of competitors was limited, it’s hard to call this an exhaustive best-of-the best list, but I do feel that all winners are worthwhile and serve as excellent examples of Blu-ray at its finest.
Following is a press release from the BFCA Web site with all winners announced …
FROM THE BFCA
Winners for the Broadcast Film Critics Association’s inaugural Critics’ Choice Best of Blu-ray were announced today (9/15). With the 5th anniversary of Blu-ray Disc™ in mind, the BFCA coordinated with the Blu-ray Disc Association to develop a Critics’ Choice list of the Top 5 titles from the first five years of Blu-ray Disc. The winners include:
2006/2007: 30th Anniversary Ultimate Edition “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”
2008: 40-Year Evolution of “Planet of the Apes”
2009: 70th Anniversary “Wizard of Oz”
2010: TIE Francis Ford Coppola Presents “Apocalypse Now” AND James Cameron’s “Avatar”
2011: “The Lord of the Rings” The Motion Picture Trilogy
Since its introduction in mid-2006, more than 100 million Blu-ray players and more than 300 million discs have been sold worldwide. The format has brought films ranging from Hollywood classics to the latest blockbusters to living rooms across the globe in high definition. Members of the BFCA were given 32 Blu-ray Disc titles to consider. The titles selected as Critics’ Choice were chosen based not on box office or retail success, but rather, on the treatment and presentation of the film on Blu-ray Disc.
“The BFCA is proud to participate in this milestone anniversary in the history of the Blu-ray disc format,” noted BFCA president Joey Berlin. “This voting process enabling our members to use their critical prowess to alert the viewing public to a wide spectrum of motion picture achievement enhanced through the prism of this exciting technology.”
Criteria for evaluating and selecting the top five titles included:
* High definition picture quality
* Audio quality
* Use of Blu-ray’s capacity and technical capabilities to create compelling bonus features, whether interactive, internet connected or otherwise
* Overall artistic/aesthetic merit of the film
* Special treatment of the title (restoration of the original film, special edition packaging, etc.) believed to make the presentation and experience of the film on Blu-ray Disc extraordinary
“The Blu-ray Disc Association is pleased that the prestigious BFCA created the Critics’ Choice Best of Blu-ray list,” said Andy Parsons, U.S. Chairman, Blu-ray Disc Association Promotions Committee. “Their undeniable authority in this arena adds more reinforcement that consumers, critics and experts alike view Blu-ray Disc as the premier home entertainment technology.”