[box cover]

The Oliver Stone Collection

A lavish production that took the collaboration of several studios, The Oliver Stone Collection is a massive undertaking that unfortunately falls somewhat short of perfection. Completists will complain that the set leaves out four films — 1974's Seizure, The Hand from 1981, Salvador (1986), and Platoon (1986). What remains is a series of single and dual-disc sets of all the films from Wall Street on, fundamentally a mixture of old DVDs, recent releases, and a rush of all-new material. And like Stone's films themselves, the box is uneven. Some movies seem to receive a great deal of attention (JFK, Any Given Sunday), while others that seem equally important get bubkes (Wall Street). The extras on some of the new discs are rehashes from previous Laserdiscs, but brand-new, previously unseen material also finds its way onto the discs, sometimes with new commentaries from Stone. Also, The Oliver Stone Collection comes in two versions. The "10-Pack" sports 11 discs — all the movies from Wall Street on, plus the documentary Oliver Stone's America. A "6-Pack" version has seven discs — everything minus Talk Radio, Heaven and Earth, U Turn, and Nixon. And then there is the packaging of the four double-disc sets included in the box. Though the primary disc is secure in its tray, the second disc comes in a small white envelope crammed into a slot on the facing page of the folding snap-case, and it's neither safely stored nor easy to get at. Still, the larger 11-disc set seems to be the best that can be done at this moment under the circumstances, and indeed it does offer up a number of small pleasures. The Oliver Stone Collection ends up being a mixed bag, a two-and-a-half star set featuring a bunch but not enough four-star movies and DVDs. Is the 10-pack worth having? Yes, if you are new to DVD, a Stone fan, and don't have any of these discs. Some of the expanded DVDs first released as part of this set have already been slated for separate release, and the others just might come out later as well. Could the box have been better? Again, yes. But as a nearly unique testimony to Stone's importance to American movies, The Oliver Stone Collection is a fine statement. We just wish it had been a little bit more articulate.
—D.K. Holm

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