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Film Noir: The Dark Side of Cinema XI  [3 X Blu-ray]
 

A Woman's Vengeance (1948)          I Was a Shoplifter (1950)

Behind the High Wall (1956)

 

 

This collection features three film noir classics.

 

A Woman’s Vengeance (1948) – Charles Boyer (When Tomorrow Comes), Ann Blyth (Thunder on the Hill) and Jessica Tandy (The Birds) star in A Woman’s Vengeance, a gripping noir mystery from acclaimed director Zoltán Korda (The Four Feathers). When his invalid wife Emily (Rachel Kempson, The Captive Heart) dies of a heart attack, it frees Henry Maurier (Boyer) to marry his young mistress (Blyth). Confiding her suspicions that Henry murdered her patient, Emily’s nurse (Mildred Natwick, Against All Flags) is encouraged by a neighbor (Tandy) to tell the police. Suddenly Henry finds himself wrongly convicted and awaiting his fate while the family doctor (Sir Cedric Hardwicke, The Lodger) races against time to find the real killer and save his life. Visionary author Aldous Huxley (Brave New World) adapted the screenplay from his own short story, “The Gioconda Smile.

 

 I Was a Shoplifter (1950) – Mona Freeman (Flesh and Fury) stars as the titular kleptomaniac in the sensational crime story, I Was a Shoplifter. Cop Jeff Andrews (Scott Brady, Undertow) agrees to go undercover to shadow the sticky-fingered Faye Burton (Freeman), a judge’s daughter who has been coerced into working for a professional shoplifting ring run by ruthless pawnbroker Ina Perdue (Andrea King, The World in His Arms). Jeff finds himself falling in love with Faye while working to crack the gang of thieves. Directed by Charles Lamont (Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man), shot by Irving Glassberg (Larceny) and featuring Tony Curtis (The Square Jungle), Charles Drake (Deported) and Rock Hudson (The Tarnished Angels), I Was a Shoplifter is a fast-paced film noir treat.

 

Behind the High Wall (1956) – Tom Tully (The Turning Point) and Sylvia Sidney (Sabotage) star in the riveting prison-break noir, Behind the High Wall. A group of convicts escape from the big house, killing a guard, kidnapping the warden, Frank Carmichael (Tully), and forcing a reluctant inmate, Johnny Hutchins (John Gavin, Midnight Lace), to accompany them. However, when a car crash kills everyone except for Frank and Johnny, the wicked warden steals $100,000 of the escapees’ loot, then accuses the innocent Johnny of the guard’s murder in order to cover up his own crime. Directed by Abner Biberman (The Price of Fear), Behind the High Wall is a crackerjack thriller that plays out to a harrowing conclusion, with fine supporting turns by Betty Lynn (TV’s The Andy Griffith Show), John Larch (Play Misty for Me) and Barney Phillips (Ruby Gentry).

Posters

Theatrical Release: January 28th, 1948 - July 1956

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Review: Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

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Bonus Captures:

Distribution Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime

A Woman's Vengeance (1948): 1:36:06.677

I Was a Shoplifter (1950): 1:13:57.708
Behind the High Wall (1956): 1:25:19.781

Video

A Woman's Vengeance (1948):

1.37:1 1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 22,866,691,549 bytes

Feature: 21,234,671,616 bytes

Video Bitrate: 26.04 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

I Was a Shoplifter (1950):

1.37:1 1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 21,541,322,644 bytes

Feature: 20,595,781,632 bytes

Video Bitrate: 33.60 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Behind the High Wall (1956):

1.85:1 1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 21,877,039,137 bytes

Feature: 21,877,039,137 bytes

Video Bitrate: 32.93 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate  A Woman's Vengeance (1948) Blu-ray:

Bitrate I Was a Shoplifter (1950): Blu-ray:

Bitrate Behind the High Wall (1956) Blu-ray:

Audio

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1591 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1591 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentary:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Subtitles English (SDH), None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Kino

 

Edition Details:

• NEW Audio Commentary for A WOMAN'S VENGEANCE by Professor and Film Scholar Jason A. Ney
• Theatrical Trailers (A WOMAN'S VENGEANCE - 2:30 & BEHIND THE HIGH WALL - 2:06)


Blu-ray Release Date:
November 29th, 2022
Standard Blu-ray Cases inside box

Chapters 9 / 9 / 9

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Kino Blu-ray (November 2022): Kino have transferred three films for their eleventh edition of Film Noir: The Dark Side of Cinema series to Blu-ray. This boxset has A Woman's Vengeance (1948), I Was a Shoplifter (1950) and Behind the High Wall (1956). They are cited as being from a "Brand New 2K & 4K Masters". They are on single-layered Blu-ray discs, in 1080P with high bitrates. I reviewed a PAL DVD of A Woman's Vengeance, HERE, and we have compared some of those SD captures below. Aside from a few speckles and surface scratches the image quality has parity with I Was a Shoplifter  looking the most crisp - attaining a slight gloss. There is infrequent depth, minor texture and solid contrast layering. I had no issues with the HD presentations.

NOTE: We have added 88 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

On their Blu-ray, Kino use a DTS-HD Master dual-mono tracks (24-bit) in the original English languages. The the dramatic score on A Woman's Vengeance is by the iconic Miklós Rózsa (The Killers, The Lost Weekend, The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes, The Strange Love of Martha Ivers, Double Indemnity) adding significant impact to the film experience. On I Was a Shoplifter the score is a mixture of stock music by the likes of Daniele Amfitheatrof, Miklós Rózsa, Hans J. Salter, Walter Scharf , Frank Skinner, Leith Stevens etc.. and on Behind the High Wall is is pastiche using work by Joseph Gershenson, Henry Mancini, and Frank Skinner. The audio transfers are clean with mild beacon and support the film's flawlessly. Kino offer optional English subtitles (see samples below) on their Region 'A' Blu-ray.

The Kino Blu-ray offers a new commentary on A Woman's Vengeance by Professor and Film Scholar Jason A. Ney. He is always informative and offers a rundown of this British-made Noir. He discusses the many changes Aldous Huxley made adapting from his own, famous short story from 1921,“The Gioconda Smile," as well as the battles he fought with Universal over its adaptation, including the, interesting, reason the name was changed to A Woman's Vengeance, where it fits into the history of Universal and the careers of the people who made it, the themes that are woven throughout the story, and how it was received upon its original release. aside form that are trailers for A Woman's Vengeance and Behind the High Wall

While A Woman's Vengeance is the standout film here, I was very keen to see I Was a Shoplifter - dealing with the less-exposed topic of kleptomania (with brief appearance by Tony Curtis - as Anthony Curtis, Rock Hudson and always sexy Peggie Castle.) I also enjoyed the prison picture Behind the High Wall that features a couple of escapes plus an enticed Warden (Tom Tully) caring for his wheelchair-bound wife, played by a less-recognizable Sylvia Sidney. Even with the lone commentary, Kino's Blu-ray package is recommended with desirable films relating to dark-cycle conventions, characters and crime-related stories. I had a wonderful viewing of all three. Vintage films fans should strongly consider.

Gary Tooze

 


Menus / Extras

 


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

 

 

directed by Zoltan Korda

UK 1948

 

A Woman’s Vengeance (1948) – Charles Boyer (When Tomorrow Comes), Ann Blyth (Thunder on the Hill) and Jessica Tandy (The Birds) star in A Woman’s Vengeance, a gripping noir mystery from acclaimed director Zoltán Korda (The Four Feathers). When his invalid wife Emily (Rachel Kempson, The Captive Heart) dies of a heart attack, it frees Henry Maurier (Boyer) to marry his young mistress (Blyth). Confiding her suspicions that Henry murdered her patient, Emily’s nurse (Mildred Natwick, Against All Flags) is encouraged by a neighbor (Tandy) to tell the police. Suddenly Henry finds himself wrongly convicted and awaiting his fate while the family doctor (Sir Cedric Hardwicke, The Lodger) races against time to find the real killer and save his life. Visionary author Aldous Huxley (Brave New World) adapted the screenplay from his own short story, “The Gioconda Smile.

 



1) Screenbound Pictures - Region 2 - PALTOP

2) KIno - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Screenbound Pictures - Region 2 - PALTOP

2) KIno - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Screenbound Pictures - Region 2 - PALTOP

2) KIno - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Screenbound Pictures - Region 2 - PALTOP

2) KIno - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


 

directed by Charles Lamont

USA 1950

 

 I Was a Shoplifter (1950) – Mona Freeman (Flesh and Fury) stars as the titular kleptomaniac in the sensational crime story, I Was a Shoplifter. Cop Jeff Andrews (Scott Brady, Undertow) agrees to go undercover to shadow the sticky-fingered Faye Burton (Freeman), a judge’s daughter who has been coerced into working for a professional shoplifting ring run by ruthless pawnbroker Ina Perdue (Andrea King, The World in His Arms). Jeff finds himself falling in love with Faye while working to crack the gang of thieves. Directed by Charles Lamont (Abbott and Costello Meet the Invisible Man), shot by Irving Glassberg (Larceny) and featuring Tony Curtis (The Square Jungle), Charles Drake (Deported) and Rock Hudson (The Tarnished Angels), I Was a Shoplifter is a fast-paced film noir treat.

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

directed by Abner Biberman

USA 1956

 

Behind the High Wall (1956) – Tom Tully (The Turning Point) and Sylvia Sidney (Sabotage) star in the riveting prison-break noir, Behind the High Wall. A group of convicts escape from the big house, killing a guard, kidnapping the warden, Frank Carmichael (Tully), and forcing a reluctant inmate, Johnny Hutchins (John Gavin, Midnight Lace), to accompany them. However, when a car crash kills everyone except for Frank and Johnny, the wicked warden steals $100,000 of the escapees’ loot, then accuses the innocent Johnny of the guard’s murder in order to cover up his own crime. Directed by Abner Biberman (The Price of Fear), Behind the High Wall is a crackerjack thriller that plays out to a harrowing conclusion, with fine supporting turns by Betty Lynn (TV’s The Andy Griffith Show), John Larch (Play Misty for Me) and Barney Phillips (Ruby Gentry).

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

 


 

More full resolution (1920 X 1080) Blu-ray Captures for DVDBeaver Patreon Supporters HERE

 

A Woman's Vengeance (1948)

 

I Was a Shoplifter (1950)

 

Behind the High Wall (1956)

 

 

 
Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

  

Bonus Captures:

Distribution Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

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