Upcoming DVD and Blu-ray Releases

Drama / Thriller

Fail Safe (1964) – Criterion 4K Blu-ray

The Criterion Collection has announced the releasing of Sidney Lumet’s cold war drama, Fail Safe (1964) on a Blu-ray edition. Stars Henry Fonda.

This unnerving procedural thriller painstakingly details an all-too-plausible nightmare scenario in which a mechanical failure jams the United States military’s chain of command and sends the country hurtling toward nuclear war with the Soviet Union.

Working from a contemporary bestseller, screenwriter Walter Bernstein and director Sidney Lumet wrench harrowing suspense from the doomsday fears of the Cold War era, making the most of a modest budget and limited sets to create an atmosphere of clammy claustrophobia and astronomically high stakes.

Starring Henry Fonda as a coolheaded U.S. president and Walter Matthau as a trigger-happy political theorist, Fail Safe is a long-underappreciated alarm bell of a film, sounding an urgent warning about the deadly logic of mutually assured destruction.

Release date: January 28, 2020
Genre: Drama / Thriller

  • Director: Sidney Lumet
  • Cast: Henry Fonda, Walter Matthau, Fritz Weaver
  • Country: USA
  • Production Year: 1964
  • Discs: 1 Blu-ray Disc
  • Region: A
  • Run Time: 112 minutes
  • Formats: Black and White; 1.85:1
  • Audio: English
  • Subtitle: English
  • AKA: Fail-Safe
  • Studio: The Criterion Collection


  • NEW 4K RESTORATION OF THE FILM, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • Audio commentary from 2000 featuring director Sidney Lumet
  • New interview with film critic J. Hoberman on 1960s nuclear paranoia and Cold War films
  • “Fail-Safe” Revisited, a short documentary from 2000 including interviews with Lumet, screenwriter Walter Bernstein, and actor Dan O’Herlihy
  • PLUS: An essay by critic Bilge Ebiri

Fail Safe (1964) trailer


Notice: The picture quality of these photos and videos do not reflect the picture quality of the blu-ray or DVD in this package.

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