With the upcoming release of Criterion’s edition of Jack Clayton’s The Innocents on Blu-ray – a fabulous and sadly, underrated movie today – I thought the time had come to make a serious inquiry among this group what additional Fox titles you would all like to see come from either Criterion or Fox Home Video proper. I've limited my list to 10 titles and given the reasons why I believe these movies on Blu-ray are long overdo. So now I'll just open it up to everyone else and let the suggestions fall where they may.
1. Anastasia (1956) – the movie that brought Ingrid Bergman back to America after her disastrous marriage to Rossellini and the lean years in their film making alliance fell apart.
2. Peyton Place (1957) – the trail blazing, ground breaking, censorship testing Jerry Wald production based on Grace Metalious’ scathing novel of sin and sex in a small town. This one is a cultural touchstone. Even today the name Peyton Place conjures to mind tawdry appeal.
3. Wilson (1944) – Zanuck’s superb biography of Woodrow Wilson is presently a shambles as part of Fox’s own cinema archive program. Wilson is a superior bio and a lavish production besides – the most expensive movie after Gone With The Wind and a true testament to Alexander Knox acting ability; sadly, never again given such a showcase to shine.
4. The Rains Came (1939) – Zanuck’s superior disaster/melodrama never made the contender’s list for Best Picture, perhaps forgivable by 1939 standards. Any other year it would have most assuredly not only been nominated, but likely would have won. Groundbreaking special effects to boot. A must see.
5. Down Argentine Way (1940) – the quintessential Fox musical of its generation, with Betty Grable and Don Ameche superb in this lavish, lurid Technicolor display of showmanship
6. Forever Amber (1947) – the incendiary tale of a ravenous social climber who will stop at nothing to triumph in the court of King Charles. Linda Darnell is ravishing in this costly and colossal studio barn-burner.
7. The Keys of the Kingdom (1944) – Gregory Peck’s gentle portrait of a Catholic priest whose travels to China and the establishment of a mission prove eventful and perilous.
8. Two For the Road (1967) Stanley Donen’s nonlinear narrative, confounding and complex deconstruction of a marriage on the rocks, costarring Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney in defining roles in their respective careers.
9. How To Steal A Million (1966) – Audrey again, this time with Peter O’Toole in William Wyler’s astute and charming caper of love and jewel thievery run amuck in the moneyed and cultured jet set of Paris.
10. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1969) – Maggie Smith’s exemplar of the high strung schoolmarm who’s laissez faire approach to the re-education of a group of impressionable young girls leads to dire consequences for all concerned.