Each week we’re recommending a movie from the film lover’s favorite home video company, Criterion. The Criterion Collection is dedicated to gathering the greatest films from around the world and publishing them in editions of the highest technical quality with supplemental features that enhance the appreciation of the art of film. This week, Ace in the Hole.
Billy Wilder’s Ace in the Hole is one of the most scathing indictments of American culture ever produced by a Hollywood filmmaker. Kirk Douglas gives the fiercest performance of his career as Chuck Tatum, an amoral newspaper reporter who washes up in dead-end Albuquerque, happens upon the scoop of a lifetime, and will do anything to keep getting the lurid headlines. Wilder’s follow-up to Sunset Boulevard is an even darker vision, a no-holds-barred exposé of the American media’s appetite for sensation that has gotten only more relevant with time.
- 111 minutes
- Black & White
- Spine #396
- 2K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
- Audio commentary by film scholar Neil Sinyard
- Portrait of a “60% Perfect Man”: Billy Wilder, a 1980 documentary featuring interviews with Wilder by film critic Michel Ciment
- Interview with actor Kirk Douglas from 1984
- Excerpts from a 1986 appearance by Wilder at the American Film Institute
- Audio excerpts from an interview with Wilder’s coscreenwriter Walter Newman
- Video afterword by filmmaker Spike Lee
- Stills gallery
- English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing