Wednesday, November 08, 2006

A Really, Really Expensive Stocking Stuffer

The Christmas holiday season is just around the corner, which means it's time to start thinking about gift ideas. If you're like me and don't give or get gifts, the last two months of the year are solely devoted to massive amounts of football, homework, chocolate and spiritual angst. But most human beings, unlike me, are of the considerate variety. Hard to believe, but some folks actually enjoy giving presents and putting some thought into the process.

A lot of people like to give DVDs as gifts. I know from firsthand experience having worked at Circuit City one holiday season. Whatever the reason, people love giving other people plastic discs with encoded information. And folks especially love getting DVDs, usually to put them on a shelf and show off their collection to friends and relatives. DVDs are the new books I suppose.

Now when buying a DVD typically someone gets either a new blockbuster release (X-Men 3, anyone?) or a season from a TV show. Either would be a good choice and most people should be grateful to receive anything at all. However, if you want to go that extra mile -- the 11 on the amplifier if you will -- for that special someone in your life or that boss who needs a huge ass-kissing, there's a really sweet DVD box set available. I give you the Criterion Collection Essential Art House: 50 Years of Janus Films.

The folks at Criterion make it their mission to create DVDs for great movies; everything from long lost classics to basketball documentaries. This collection is no exception. For a mere $850 (and right now it's only $650) you can give someone fifty of the most-acclaimed movies ever made. Sounds expensive, but that's only $17 a movie. Now I haven't seen most of the films in this 14-lb collection of classics, but the ones I have watched (The 400 Blows, M, Rashomon, The Rules of the Game, Seven Samurai, The Seventh Seal, The Third Man) are some of the best and most enjoyable flicks I've experienced.

This collection would make a great and unique gift for whomever you're thinking about this holiday season. Or hell, keep the movies. Sometimes you just gotta spoil yourself.

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