Search DVDBeaver

S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka 'The Gent from Frisco')

Directed by John Huston
USA 1941

 

A gallery of high-living lowlifes will stop at nothing to get their sweaty hands on a jewel-encrusted falcon. Detective Sam Spade (Humphrey Bogart) wants to find out why--and who'll take the fall for his partner's murder. An all-star cast (including Sydney Greenstreet, Mary Astor, Peter Lorre and Elisha Cook Jr.) joins Bogart in this crackling mystery masterwork written for the screen (from Dashiell Hammett's novel) and directed by John Huston. This nominee for 3 Academy Awards Best Picture, Supporting Actor (Greenstreet) and Screenplay (Huston)--catapulted Bogart to stardom and launched Huston’s directorial career. All with a bird and a bang!

***

Huston's first film displays the hallmarks that were to distinguish his later work: the mocking attitude toward human greed; the cavalier insolence with which plot details are treated almost as asides; the delight in bizarre characterisations, here ranging from the amiably snarling Sam Spade ('When you're slapped, you'll take it and like it') who opened a whole new romantic career for Bogart, to Lorre's petulant, gardenia-scented Joel Cairo, Cook's waspishly effete gunsel, and Greenstreet's monstrously jocular Fat Man ('By gad, sir, you are a character'). What makes it a prototype film noir is the vein of unease missing from the two earlier versions of Hammett's novel. Filmed almost entirely in interiors, it presents a claustrophobic world animated by betrayal, perversion and pain, never - even at its most irresistibly funny, as when Cook listens in outraged disbelief while his fat sugar daddy proposes to sell him down the line - quite losing sight of this central abyss of darkness, ultimately embodied by Mary Astor's sadly duplicitous siren.

Excerpt from TimeOut Film Guide located HERE

  Posters

Theatrical Release: October 3rd, 1941

Reviews       More Reviews      DVD Reviews

Comparison:

Warner - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC vs. Warner - Region FREE - Blu-ray

DVD Box Cover

   

 

Distribution Warner Home Video - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC Warner Studios
Region FREE -
Blu-ray
Available in 7-disc The Humphrey Bogart - The Signature Collection, Vol. 2 with The Maltese Falcon Three-Disc Special Edition / Across the Pacific / Action in the North Atlantic / All Through the Night and Passage to Marseille.

       

Runtime 1:40:21  1::40:32.067
Video 1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 6.2 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s   

1080P / 23.976 fps Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 34,838,499,235 bytes

Feature: 23,022,876,672 bytes

Video Bitrate: 26.56 Mbps

Codec: VC-1 Video

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate:

Bitrate: Blu-ray

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0)  DTS-HD Master Audio English 1069 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1069 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentary: Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB
Dolby Digital Audio German 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB
Dolby Digital Audio Portuguese 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB
Dolby Digital Audio Spanish 192 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB
Subtitles English, Spanish, French, None English , Danish, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Warner Home Video

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• Commentary by Bogart biographer Eric Lax
• Warner Night at the Movies 1941 Short Subjects Gallery: vintage newsreel, Technicolor musical short The Gay Parisian, classic cartoons Hiawatha's Rabbit Hunt and Meet John Doughboy
• 2 Previous Movie Versions of the classic Hammett caper:
The Maltese Falcon (1931) with Bebe Daniels and Recardo Cortez
• Satan Met a Lady (1936) with Bette Davis and Warren William
• Theatrical Trailers
• New Documentary "The Maltese Falcon: One Magnificent Bird"
• The Trailers of Humphrey Bogart
• Breakdowns of 1941: Studio Blooper Reel
• Audio-only bonus: 3 radio show adaptations including a version starring Edward G. Robinson

DVD Release Date: October 3rd, 2006

2 Slim transparent Keep Cases (thinpak) - 1 single, 1 double
Chapters: 28

Release Information:
Studio: Warner Home Video

1080P / 23.976 fps Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 34,838,499,235 bytes

Feature: 23,022,876,672 bytes

Video Bitrate: 26.56 Mbps

Codec: VC-1 Video

Edition Details:

• Commentary by Bogart biographer Eric Lax
• Featurette The Maltese Falcon:

One Magnificent Bird (32:06)
• Breakdowns of 1941: Studio blooper

reel makeup tests (12:53)
Becoming Attractions: The Trailers of

Humphrey Bogart (44:45)
• Warner Night at the Movies 1941 short

subjects gallery: Newsreel, musical short

The Gay Parisian, 2 classic cartoons:

Hiawatha's Rabbit Hunt

and Meet John Doughboy
• Trailers of This Movie, 1941's Sergeant

York and 1936's previous Falcon

movie adaptation Satan Met a Lady
• Audio-only bonus: 3 radio show adaptations--

two featuring the movie's original stars,

plus another starring Edward G. Robinson

 

Blu-ray Release Date: October 5th, 2010
Standard Blu-ray case
Chapters: 28

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

ADDITION: Warner - Region FREE - Blu-ray - September 2010: The paler contrast of the 2006 DVD package transfer has been replaced by a much thicker, and richer, image on the Blu-ray. Hence, detail doesn't crisp up as much as one might expect but the image has a very textured, darker look that seems more faithful to the original appearance. Less slick - but more... film-like. Noise still exists in monochromatic darker scenes but it was never impinging. I actually love the way this looks - a shade grittier and 'down-and-dirty' - rather than glossy and flat. This looks different than the 'pure' appearance of Warner's  The Treasure of the Sierra Madre - but I'm convinced it is authentic. I really felt this was a viable representation of a theatrical viewing being more film-like than the SD-DVD - that, to be fair, did very well for that medium. This, however, is quite different.  

Incidentally this is only the second film noir from our 'essential listing' HERE to make it to Blu-ray - and actually the very first if you are only considering 'American' films. The other is UK-produced The Third Man (Criterion OOP - or Studio Canal).

We get a lossless DTS-HD Master in original mono at 1069 kbps. It represents the track about as well as possible. It is essentially flawless - consistent and clean - some perceived depth. The disc includes includes an option of 3 foreign language DUBs and a list of subtitle options including English identifying the Region FREE disc as the international Blu-ray

Extras are duplicated from the 3-disc DVD package (accessible on the lone Blu-ray disc), and described below (including Anthony's description of The Gay Parisian) EXCEPT we lose the previous film versions of the classic Hammett caper - namely The Maltese Falcon (1931) with Bebe Daniels and Recardo Cortez and Satan Met a Lady (1936) with Bette Davis and Warren William. Notably the half hour featurette entitled The Maltese Falcon: One Magnificent Bird, a 40 minute Turner featurette The Trailers of Humphrey Bogart and there is a vintage blooper reel - about 12 minutes called - Breakdowns of 1941: Studio Blooper Reel, Warner Night at the Movies, 2 cartoons, and three audio broadcasts.

This is, by far, the most I have ever enjoyed The Maltese Falcon. The texture of Bogie's pinstripe-suit alone, on Blu-ray, created a powerful aura. The dual-layered 1080P rendering produces a remarkably different tone from the SD presentation. I found it, truly, enchanting. This film is overflowing with 'cool' and 'style' that never seemed matched again in Hollywood. It's a great price for under $20. We give a HUGE recommendation!

****

ON THE DVD: There was a snapper case single disc version that we hoped to compare this to, but circumstances prevented it. Regardless it can't hold a candle to this package.

The film, a recognized classic, is worthy of a 3-pack SE release with supplements, commentary and a beautiful restoration. Warner went to town and the result is a must-own DVD package.

The image looks close to being possibly the best in the Bogie Signature 2 collection. Shadow detail is exquisite - sharpness is strong and it appears free of artifacts and any damage. It's a shade faint- not bleached but lighter than some might expect. Audio is likewise rock-solid and the optional subtitles are at Warner's usual high standard. On Disc 1 there are also extras - Anthony (from our ListServ) says:

I thought I should highlight the 22-minute special short on Disc One, which is about the best of these little features I've seen Warners give us yet. It's the 1941 Oscar-nominated complete film version of The Ballets Russe, featuring Leonid Massine, of the ballet arrangement of Offenbach's music, 'Gaite Parisienne'. Sensational Technicolor; the film marred somewhat by Jean Negulesco's over-active direction, but what he lets you see of the ballet is sensational.

Eric Lax gives an excellent commentary expounding on his vast knowledge of Bogart and the film. He does such a good job that you only consider that he could have had some support in a few brief moments. Regardless it was excellent! Warner jams the 3 DVD set with multiple supplements - the most notable being on disc 2 with two full features - the 1931 version of The Maltese Falcon and Bette Davis in Satan Met A Lady. Both paling in comparison to Disc 1's film, it was still nice to see although they had not seen the same diligent restoration process that the main feature has had. If you have the time, either would make for a good B-film starter evening - warming you up for the Huston's debut film.

On the third DVD - is a half hour featurette entitled - The Maltese Falcon: One Magnificent Bird, a 40 minute Turner featurette entitled - The Trailers of Humphrey Bogart. There is another vintage blooper reel - about 12 minutes called - Breakdowns of 1941: Studio Blooper Reel, some makeup tests with Mary Astor and three audio broadcasts.

The Bogart Signature Collection 2 is great but this is really the whole set in this film - the others are certainly worthy but John Huston transformed Hammett's novel into the stuff of legend - making this an essential DVD.

Gary W. Tooze

 



DVD Menus - Disc 1


DVD Menus - Disc 2

DVD Menus - Disc 3

 

Warner - Region FREE Blu-ray

 


CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

 

1) Warner - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) Warner - Region FREE Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

Subtitle Sample

 


 

Screen Captures

 

1) Warner - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) Warner - Region FREE Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) Warner - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) Warner - Region FREE Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) Warner - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) Warner - Region FREE Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) Warner - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) Warner - Region FREE Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) Warner - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) Warner - Region FREE Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 


1) Warner - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) Warner - Region FREE Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) Warner - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC - TOP

2) Warner - Region FREE Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 
 
 
 


From the DVD package
The Maltese Falcon - 1931
 


Satan Met a Lady
 

 


DVD Box Cover

   

 

Distribution Warner Home Video - Region 1,2,3,4 - NTSC Warner Studios
Region FREE -
Blu-ray
Available in 7-disc The Humphrey Bogart - The Signature Collection, Vol. 2 with The Maltese Falcon Three-Disc Special Edition / Across the Pacific / Action in the North Atlantic / All Through the Night and Passage to Marseille.

       




 

Hit Counter

 

DONATIONS Keep DVDBeaver alive:

Mail cheques, money orders, cash to:    or CLICK PayPal logo to donate!

Gary Tooze

Thank You!