Noir titles from Universal

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Sergio A, Apr 21, 2004.

  1. Sergio A

    Sergio A Stunt Coordinator

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    Over at DVD File they posted this exciting news:

    "Hitting DVD on July 6th are a spate of suspense favorites from Hollywood's golden era:The Big Clock, Black Angel, Criss Cross, This Gun For Hire, [and] a reissue of Billy Wilder's Double Indemnity"

    All these films are excellent and I'm only sorry that The Glass Key (1942) and Night Has a Thousand Eyes (1948) seem to have been left out.

    The Big Clock in particular is well worth re-appraising and has fantastic cinematography by John Seitz, who also lensed This Gun for Hire and Double Indemnity.

    Today it's mainly remembered as being based on the same novel that was adapted into No Way Out (1987), the superior Pentagon-based thriller starring Kevin Costner and Gene Hackman. Apart from the basic premise they are two very different animals however and can be enjoyed quite separately.

    I for one am really looking forward to these. Time to update Herb kane's list again (thankfully)!
     
  2. Herb Kane

    Herb Kane Screenwriter

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    The list has been updated. With the 5 WB, 5 Universal, Artisan's Force Of Evil, Image's Too Late For Tears & Suddenly, Home Vision's Time Without Pity and two Alpha titles, Circumstantial Evidence and The Green Glove, brings the total to 16 great Film Noir titles to be released between now and the end of July... Wow.

    Herb.
     
  3. John Hodson

    John Hodson Producer

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    I didn't know about Time Without Pity - thanks Herb.

    ---
    So many films, so little time...
     
  4. John Hodson

    John Hodson Producer

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    Covers for the Universal noir titles posted here.

    ---
    So many films, so little time...
     
  5. oscar_merkx

    oscar_merkx Lead Actor

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    choices to make which to buy, not funny

    [​IMG]
     
  6. John Hodson

    John Hodson Producer

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    Well you know Oscar, you're going to get 'em all! [​IMG]

    ---
    So many films, so little time...
     
  7. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    not bad.
    i will just about always prefer the original key art, but at least these are decently done.

    and i like that Brand line on the top.
    simple, understated.

    i hope i'll be seeing it on more releases before the year is out [​IMG]
     
  8. Glenn R

    Glenn R Stunt Coordinator

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    Will this come out as a boxed set (ala the Warners noir set)?
     
  9. Eric Peterson

    Eric Peterson Cinematographer

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    I actually like the covers.

    I'm holding out a little hope for Double Indemnity since the specs. haven't been announced. Maybe Universal will at least it get it partially right.

    Please, Please, Please, I'm on my hands and knees!
     
  10. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    For what its worth, and without the benefit of any information on the title, I would steer very clear of Artisan's Force of Evil.

    As their work has not yet made one DVD seemingly representative of the film, chances are slim to none that this release will be of acceptable quality.
     
  11. EdgarNazaretyan

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    hey robert harris, its an honor to have your input on our discussions, it is always helpful. By the way do you think Double Indemnity will have a better transfer than the one before from Image Entertainment.
     
  12. Chris*W

    Chris*W Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm going to purchase these as soon as they come out (as well as W.B.'s noir collection). I just hope that Double Indemnity will have a better transfer...
     
  13. Walter Kittel

    Walter Kittel Producer

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    With all due respect, even a so so version of Force of Evil is a must have for any fan of film noir. Featuring a wonderful performance by Thomas Gomez, beautiful cinematography by George Barnes, great use of location shots, and the compelling screen presence of John Garfield; Force of Evil is one of the great noirs. It rightfully has a place in critic Jonathan Rosenbaum's list of 100 films that he offers as an alternative to the AFI 100.

    - Walter.
     
  14. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Archivist
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    The point of my post was that an Artisan "version" of FoE could easily affect the work of Mr. Barnes, Mr. Gomez, Mr. Garfield, and overall, make Mr. Polonsky's work seem much less than it is or should be.

    In general, the purchasing by the public of DVDs which do not meet modern specs sends a message to the publishers that barely adequate is the target to hit.

    At that point, the acceptance of mere adequacy disallows those on this board the opportunity to be heard when a release is not correct in either its technical standards or in its overall presentation.

    I would have no problem with an Artisan release on VHS, as the adequacy cannot be seen. The film is currently in the marketplace under their previous (Republic) label.

    As an aside, it would be nice to see a DVD release from Universal on Tell Them Willie Boy is Here.

    RAH
     
  15. Walter Kittel

    Walter Kittel Producer

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    And not purchasing may send a message that consumers have no interest in catalog titles, or noirs in particular. Regardless, I do share your trepidation over the likely quality of this release from Artisan and am hoping for the best.

    - Walter.
     
  16. Herb Kane

    Herb Kane Screenwriter

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    I share Walter’s sentiments with regards to picking up this title. Any message sent that looks as though we are not interested in catalogue titles will simply serve one purpose - to close the vaults. Would I be as vehement were it not for the genre? Absolutely. Life is too short. And has been discussed, this film is a must have for fans of noir.

    Herb.
     
  17. Lyle H.

    Lyle H. Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, I got my copy of Force of Evil on Friday; and it looks fine. It's not a Warner-quality transfer, but it looks fine. I'll be watching it soon.
     
  18. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
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    Vote with your pocketbook and the appropriate message will be received. If Artisan is moving minimal units of catalog titles, while WB, Paramount, Fox, Universal, Criterion, Anchor Bay, et al are selling significantly more, at some point they will be obliged to figure out why their titles are not selling as well as their competitors'.

    Regards,
     
  19. Glenn R

    Glenn R Stunt Coordinator

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    I have seen many DVD transfers that aren't worth a dime,* and giving our dimes to these publishers would be counterproductive to our collective interest in quality releases of noir titles.

    Robert Harris acknowledged up front that he did not have any specifics on Force of Evil, but if he says Artisan has not done well with past titles, that's a credible and valuable forewarning. Thanks Robert!

    I remain to be persuaded on Force of Evil, and perhaps Artisan has turned a corner. But for those that do have this disc, please include the equipment you're using. Equipment may be one factor affecting our assessments.

    *P.S. Thank goodness for Blockbuster's trade-ins so that I can unload such junk DVDs.
     
  20. Marc Colella

    Marc Colella Cinematographer

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    I agree with Ken.

    Artisan will point the fingers at themselves if other studio's Noir titles are selling well while theirs aren't.
    If the quality is inferior, don't purchase it. They'll put 2 and 2 together.
     

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