Four Film Noir Classics (Limited Edition) Blu-ray

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Release Date: 20 November 2017

Description

Film noir has had many influences. Long before the term was even coined, we had atmospheric studio-shot detective thrillers, whose characters gradually became more ambiguous, and whose locations started to take in the world outside (notably New York City). This collection showcases some classic examples.

In The Dark Mirror (1946), directed by Robert Siodmak (The Killers), a man is murdered and there’s an obvious suspect, but she has an identical twin sister (both played by Olivia de Havilland, Gone with the Wind), and one of them has a cast-iron alibi. The perfect crime? A psychologist with a specialist interest in twin psychology delves into the heart of the mystery, at considerable risk to himself.

In Secret Beyond the Door (1947), Fritz Lang (The Big Heat) adapts the Bluebeard legend with a dash of Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca. Shortly after their marriage, Celia (Joan Bennett, Suspiria) begins to suspect her architect husband Mark (Michael Redgrave, Dead of Night) of having a secret past, and wonders about the reason behind multiple rooms in his self-designed home, one of which is kept permanently locked.

In Abraham Polonsky’s Force of Evil (1948), an unscrupulous lawyer (John Garfield, The Postman Always Rings Twice) scents a personal fortune when he concocts a plan to merge New York City’s numbers rackets into a single powerful and unbreakable operation, but reckons without his brother, who’d rather stay independent.

And in Joseph H. Lewis’ ultra-stylish The Big Combo (1955), Lieutenant Diamond (Cornel Wilde, The Naked Prey) is determined to bring down mob boss Mr Brown (Richard Conte, Thieves’ Highway). But Brown feels the same way, and is far less constrained by the law, leading to some wince-inducing set pieces (some involving a pre-stardom Lee Van Cleef).

This collection showcases many of the genre’s major names on both sides of the camera. In addition to the directing and acting talent mentioned above there are cinematographers Stanley Cortez (The Night of the Hunter) and John Alton (An American in Paris), composers Dmitri Tiomkin (High Noon) and Miklós Rósza (The Killers) and writers Nunnally Johnson (The Woman in the Window) and Philip Yordan (Johnny Guitar). It’s little wonder that directors such as Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino were so struck by them.

Limited Edition Contents:

  • Limited Edition Dual Format Collection [2000 copies]
  • High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) and Standard Definition DVD presentation of four film noir classics: The Dark Mirror (Robert Siodmak, 1946), Secret Beyond the Door (Fritz Lang, 1947), Force of Evil (Abraham Polonsky, 1948), and The Big Combo (Joseph H. Lewis, 1955)
  • Commentaries on all films by leading scholars and critics Adrian Martin (on The Dark Mirror), Alan K. Rode (on Secret Beyond the Door), Glenn Kenny and Farran Smith Nehme (on Force of Evil), and Eddie Muller (on The Big Combo)
  • Noah Isenberg on The Dark Mirror, the author and scholar provides a detailed analysis of the film.
  • Noah Isenberg on The Dark Mirror, the author and scholar provides a detailed analysis of the film
  • Barry Keith Grant on Secret Beyond the Door, the author and scholar introduces the film
  • The House of Lang: A visual essay on Fritz Lang’s style by filmmaker David Cairns with a focus on his noir work
  • Introduction to Force of Evil by Martin Scorsese
  • An Autopsy on Capitalism: A visual essay on the production and reception of Force of Evil by Frank Krutnik, author of In a Lonely Street: Film noir, genre, masculinity
  • Commentary on selected Force of Evil themes by Krutnik
  • Geoff Andrew on The Big Combo, the critic and programmer offers an introduction to and analysis of the film
  • Wagon Wheel Joe: A visual essay on director Joseph H. Lewis by filmmaker David Cairns
  • The Big Combo original screenplay (BD/DVD-ROM content)
  • Four radio plays, starring Olivia de Havilland and John Garfield among others
  • Trailers
  • Reversible sleeves featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Scott Saslow for all films
  • Hardback book featuring new writing on all the films by noir experts and critics including Michael Brooke, Andrew Spicer, David Cairns and Tony Rayns, production stories, re-prints featuring Fritz Lang, Abraham Polonsky, Cornel Wilde, The Dark Mirror consultant Dr Mary Romm, contemporary reviews, and credits for all films, illustrated with original stills [Limited Edition Exclusive].

Product Details

Certificate:
  • PG
Actor:
  • Olivia De Havilland
Director:
  • Robert Siodmak,
  • Fritz Lang,
  • Abraham Polonsky,
  • Joseph H. Lewis
Region:
  • 2
Number of Discs:
  • 8
Run Time:
  • 363 minutes
Studio:
  • Arrow Academy
Theatrical Release Year:
  • 2017

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