Legendary director NICHOLAS RAY (In a Lonely Place, Rebel Without a Cause) began his career with this lyrical film noir, the first in a series of existential genre films overflowing with sympathy for America's outcasts and underdogs. When the wide-eyed fugitive Bowie (Rope's FARLEY GRANGER), having broken out of prison with some bank robbers, meets the innocent Keechie (Ben-Hur's CATHY O'DONNELL), each recognizes something in the other that no one else ever has. The young lovers envision a new, decent life together, but as they flee the cops and contend with Bowie's fellow outlaws, who aren't about to let him go straight, they realize there's nowhere left to run. Ray brought an outsider's sensibility honed in the theatre to this debut, using revolutionary camera techniques and naturalistic performances to craft a profoundly romantic crime drama that paved the way for decades of lovers-on-the-run thrillers to come. Special Features New 2K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray Audio commentary featuring film historian Eddie Muller and actor Farley Granger New video interview with film critic Imogen Sara Smith Short piece from 2007 with film critic Molly Haskell, filmmakers Christopher Coppola and Oliver Stone, and film noir specialists Alain Silver and James Ursini Illustrated audio interview excerpts from 1956 with producer John Houseman PLUS: A new essay by film scholar Bernard Eisenschitz
Hollywood legends Alan Ladd and Veronica Lake (The Glass Key, This Gun For Hire) team up for a masterfully told tale of suspense and intrigue in the classic noir tradition. When discharged navy officer Johnny Morrison (Ladd) comes home from war to his old stomping ground in the Hollywood Hills, he is shocked to discover his wife Helen (Doris Dowling) having an affair with the proprietor of the glamorous Blue Dahlia nightclub. But when Helen is murdered and Johnny is fingered as the prime suspect, he is forced to prove his innocence, aided by a woman harbouring a dark secret, the beautiful and enigmatic Joyce (Lake). Directed by George Marshall (Destry Rides Again, How the West Was Won) from a script by acclaimed hard-boiled novelist Raymond Chandler his only produced original screenplay The Blue Dahlia sparkles with wit and old Hollywood glamour, showcasing some of the most celebrated talent of the golden age of the silver screen at their iconic best, making its high definition debut in this feature-packed release from Arrow Academy. SPECIAL EDITION CONTENTS High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation Original uncompressed PCM mono audio Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing Selected scene commentary by Frank Krutnik, author of In a Lonely Street: Film Noir, Genre, Masculinity Introduction to the film by Frank Krutnik Rare 1949 half-hour radio dramatization of The Blue Dahlia by The Screen Guild Theater, starring Veronica Lake and Alan Ladd Original theatrical trailer Extensive gallery of vintage stills and promotional materials Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Tonci Zonjic
Perhaps no movie could capture F Scott Fitzgerald's novel The Great Gatsby in its entirety, but this adaptation, scripted by Francis Ford Coppola, is certainly a handsome try, putting costume design and art direction above the intricacies of character. Robert Redford is an interesting casting choice as Gatsby, the millionaire isolated in his mansion, still dreaming of the woman he lost. And Sam Waterston is perfect as the narrator, Nick, who brings the dream girl Daisy Buchanan back to Gatsby. The problem seems to be that director Jack Clayton fell in love with the flapper dresses and the party scenes and the jazz age tunes, ending up with a Classics Illustrated version of a great book rather than a fresh, organic take on the text. While Redford grows more quietly intriguing in the film, Mia Farrow's pallid performance as Daisy leaves you wondering why Gatsby, or anyone else, should care so much about his grand passion. The effective supporting cast includes Bruce Dern as Daisy's husband, and Scott Wilson and Karen Black as the low-rent couple whose destinies cross the sun-drenched protagonists. (That's future star Patsy Kensit as Daisy's little daughter.) The film won two Oscars--not surprisingly, for costumes and musical score. --Robert Horton
When Johnny Morrison returns home at the end of the war he expects to receive a warm welcome from his wife. However he makes the unpleasant discovery that she's been unfaithful to him with Eddie Harwood the owner of the Blue Dahlia nightclub. After a heated and violent argument he storms out of their house. Later that night she's murdered--and Johnny winds up the prime suspect. Now to prove his innocence Johnny must find the real culprit. Among the suspects are the ruthless nightclub owner and a vicious gangster. Joyce Harwood the estranged wife of the club's proprietor lends Johnny a hand and the two fall in love while tracking down the killer. Two ex-service buddies also come to Johnny's aid: the shell-shocked Buzz Wanchek and George Copeland. Will Johnny solve the mystery before the police find him and charge him with murder? This film noir classic was Raymond Chandler's first original story written directly for the screen.
Don Birnam long-time alcoholic has been ""on the wagon"" for ten days and seems to be over the worst; but his craving has just become more insidious. Evading a country weekend planned by his brother Wick and girlfriend Helen he begins a four-day bender. In flashbacks we see past events all gone wrong because of the bottle. But this bout looks like being his last...one way or the other. Winner of 4 Oscars including Best Actor Best Screenplay Best Director and Best Film.
'Mommie Dearest' is the outrageous and controversial story of legendary movie star Joan Crawford (Faye Dunaway) and her struggle with the dual roles of fading actress and tormented mother. The public Crawford was strong-willed glamorous and admirable but Mommie Dearest reveals the private Crawford the woman desperate to be a mother adopting her children when she was single and trying to survive in the movie industry. The rage the debilitating strain and the terrifying descent in
Taken from the first television series this finds a former Army sergeant returning home to an economically depressed Gallowshields in Tyneside at the end of World War One. But this sergeant always lands on his feet...
This classic Western adapted from the novel by Harold Robbins and starring STEVE MCQUEEN in the title role is an edgy and gripping story of revenge that interweaves a number of different stories together in one mans quest to track down the killers of his parents. NEVADA SMITH sees a return to form for McQueen in a genre that he excelled in and with a supporting cast including Karl Malden Martin Landau and Arthur Kennedy the film sparkles with great performances and breathtaking s
"I'm not a drinker--I'm a drunk." These words, and the serious message behind them, were still potent enough in 1945 to shock audiences flocking to The Lost Weekend. The speaker is Don Birnam (Ray Milland), a handsome, talented, articulate alcoholic. The writing team of producer Charles Brackett and director Billy Wilder pull no punches in their depiction of Birnam's massive weekend bender, a tailspin that finds him reeling from his favorite watering hole to Bellevue Hospital. Location shooting in New York helps the street-level atmosphere, especially a sequence in which Birnam, a budding writer, tries to hock his typewriter for booze money. He desperately staggers past shuttered storefronts--it's Yom Kippur, and the pawnshops are closed. Milland, previously known as a lightweight leading man (he'd starred in Wilder's hilarious The Major and the Minor three years earlier), burrows convincingly under the skin of the character, whether waxing poetic about the escape of drinking or screaming his lungs out in the D.T.'s sequence. Wilder, having just made the ultra-noir Double Indemnity, brought a new kind of frankness and darkness to Hollywood's treatment of a social problem. At first the film may have seemed too bold; Paramount Pictures nearly killed the release of the picture after it tested poorly with preview audiences. But once in release, The Lost Weekend became a substantial hit, and won four Oscars: for picture, director, screenplay, and actor. --Robert Horton
Jesús Franco, Spain's crazed cult auteur, had made a couple of features before The Awful Dr Orloff, but this infamous thriller (reportedly Spain's first horror film) gave birth to Franco's brand of erotic horror and surreal madness. The story of a mad surgeon who kidnaps and disfigures beautiful showgirls in an attempt to restore the face of his scarred daughter is clearly influenced by George Franju's Eyes Without a Face. The style, however, is a mix of foggy Universal monster movies and sexed-up Hammer horror, which Franco pushes to the limits of Spain's 1960s censorship restrictions (and beyond). A gaunt and hollowed Howard Vernon plays the sadistic surgeon Orloff (a role he revived in a number of sequels), and Ricardo Valle dons a phoney but freaky mask to play his grunting, blind, bug-eyed henchman, Morpho, who has a savage habit of taking a big bite of the victims. It's a smooth, elegantly orchestrated thriller with handsome sets and vivid locations, and the fogbound cobblestone streets, dark alleys and eerily empty mansions create a genuinely spooky ambience. He also tosses in a wild, creepy, thoroughly modern experimental score. Franco went on to direct more than 150 films under a dozen pseudonyms, most of which make the brief flashes of flesh and perversity here look tame, but this trendsetting landmark is still considered one of his greatest.--Sean Axmaker, Amazon.com
As a middle aged protestor faces a terminal illness her one desire is to meet Greta Garbo. The search for this reclusive star proves to be an hilarious quest.
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