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A few words about…™ Rich and Strange – in Blu-ray (4 Viewers)

Robert Harris

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Robert Harris
Rich and Strange, a 1931 Hitchcock film, is oriented toward Hitchcock completists.

It's not a great, or important film.

Still an early talkie by UK standards, with lots of non-sync silent footage running at undercrank, along with specific dialogue passages - all stilted of the age.

As a disc, presumably from a BFI restoration, the film is a beauty. Rich blacks, a lovely grading, good grain. Everything in its place, with only a single sequence in which I noted any possible damage - which was probably a processing shading problem.

For those brave enough to go for it, you'll be rewarded with one lovely Hitchcockian bit, which I'll not reveal. For the first 70 or so minutes, the film is akin to a travelogue featuring a married couple and their adventures. From then on, things pick up, which means it's the final 13 minutes that may be of interest.

Kino is doing a service releasing these films, and I applaud them for it.

Here's the updated master list of UK Hitchcock films in domestic release, and again, steer clear of PD bargain bin discs, as they're illegal after 1926:

Below, is a list of legitimate domestic DVD and Blu-ray releases.

1925
The Pleasure Garden - Bavaria - public domain

1926
The Mountain Eagle - Gainsborough - Not known to survive

1927
When Boys Leave Home (Downhill) - Gainsborough - Criterion (Extra on Lodger)
Easy Virtue - Gainsborough
The Lodger - Gainsborough - Criterion (Blu-ray)
The Ring - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1928
The Farmer's Wife - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
Champagne - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1929
Blackmail - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
The Manxman - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
Juno and the Paycock - BIP

1930
Murder - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1931
The Skin Game - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)
East of Shanghai (Rich and Strange) - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1932
Number 17 - BIP - Kino (Blu-ray)

1934
The Man Who Knew Too Much - Gaumont - Criterion (Blu-ray)
Strauss' Great Waltz - Gaumont

1935
The 39 Steps - Gaumont - Criterion (Blu-ray)

1936
Secret Agent - Gaumont -
Sabotage - Gaumont - MGM (DVD)

1937
Young and Innocent Gaumont - MGM (DVD)

1938
The Lady Vanishes - Gainsborough - Criterion (Blu-ray)

1939
Jamaica Inn - Renown - Cohen (Blu-ray)

Image – 4.25

Audio – 4

Pass / Fail – Pass

RAH
 
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roxy1927

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vincent parisi
I saw it forever ago on PBS and liked it a lot. It seemed more like a romantic comedy than anything Hitchcockian.
Obviously due for a reevaluation and possibly a disappointment?
 

Dick

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Rick
Thanks so much, Robert, for your list consolidating Hitchcock's early work on Blu-ray. I will use this as a reference guide.
 
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Osato

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Tim
Years ago I saw a 3 person live play performance of The 39 Steps. It was a lot of fun and very entertaining too.

Many of these other early Hitchcock films I have not seen.
 

Charles Smith

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Yes, belated thanks for the list. This kind of stewardship and care is appreciated.
 

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