(aka 'Morirai A Mezzanotte')

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/mann.htm
USA 1947

 

It's hard to determine just what is the greatest scene in Anthony Mann's brilliant film noir Desperate (1947). Is it the scene where Raymond Burr slices himself a piece of turkey while he roughs up a pair of elderly country folk, or the brutal fight scene that occurs off screen while a swaying overhead light illuminates the sadistic faces of the killers in alternating black and white? Perhaps it's the superbly crafted montage which escalates with close-ups centered on an alarm clock as it counts down to an execution, or it could very well be the death of Pete, a slimy extortionist who sits down for a left-over meal but finds himself rubbed out in lightning fashion. There are other fantastic scenes too numerous to mention in this creatively directed, RKO B-picture which hasn't quite received its due as one of the best of its kind.

Excerpt from TCM located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: May 9th, 1947

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DVD Comparison:

Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL

Big thanks to Fabian Kusch for sending us the Manga captures!

(Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL LEFT vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)

DVD Box Cover

   

Distribution Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL
Runtime 1:13:24  (4% PAL speedup)  1:13:06 (4% PAL speedup) 
Video 1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 7.46 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s
1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 6.15 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

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

Bitrate:

 Elleu

Bitrate:

 Manga

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0), DUB: Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0) English (Dolby Digital 2.0)
Subtitles Italian, None Spanish, None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Elleu

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• none 

DVD Release Date: January, 2007

Keep Case
Chapters: 12

Release Information:
Studio: Manga

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• text bios filmographies of Anthony Mann, Steve Brodie, Audrey Long and Raymond Burr (in Spanish) 

DVD Release Date: July 24th, 2007

Keep Case
Chapters: 12

 

Comments:

ADDITION: Manga Film - June 08': Firstly a big thanks to Fabian Kusch for sending us the Manga captures!

Well, it's not perfect but the Spanish Manga captures are far better than the Italian ones. Specifically they don't show that horrible green haze and contrast appears much improved with more pure black and whites. The Manga might be marginally brighter and sharper. It even has some extras although they are text screens and only in Spanish.

Bottom line - buy the Manga if you are a Noir junkie and 'desperate' to see Mann's Desperate! It's worth it!

We still implore the majors to get this Noir gem out in a respectable region one transfer. NOW!... please?

***

Thanks to Nicolas for informing us of this edition. We can't say enough about this Anthony Mann Noir masterpiece, but the question about Desperate to answer is 'How desperate are you to own it on DVD?'

This is about as weak as DVD can get - single-layered, I see some interlaced combing, and it is from an obviously poor analogue source. It's redeeming feature, aside from its mere existence as the only DVD edition of this film (that I am aware of anyway), is the Italian subtitles are removable and it has original English audio as an option. Contrast is weak and fairly muddy and detail just ain't there. All my bitching though and I still thoroughly enjoyed watching it (it's a fabulous film noir) and I have seen worse image quality. Others may agree the film value is worth the extremely weak transfer (actually 'transfer' seems like too impressive a word - this looks like a DVD-R dupe from TV).

Audio may be a shade superior to the picture and I was able to follow all the onscreen events but I couldn't count all the instances of hiss and pops. There are no extra features.

If nothing else perhaps this can get the studios off their collective rears and get this RKO gem put to DVD (properly). This suspenseful film has so many pure noir moments (shots through mirrors, up stairs etc.). Like Detour (a Noir fav) this is simple B cinema that resonates the best the style has to offer.  

Gary W. Tooze

 



DVD Menus

 

(Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL LEFT vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)


 

 


Subtitle Samples

 

(Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


 

Screen Captures

 

(Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 

 


(Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)
 

 

 


(Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL TOP vs. Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)
 

 


DVD Box Cover

   

Distribution Elleu (RKO Collection) - Region 2 - PAL Manga Films - Region 2 - PAL




 

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