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Forgotten Noir Vol. 13

Breakdown (1952)        Eyewitness (1950)



directed by Edmond Angelo
USA 1952


Breakdown: There's action and drama in AND out of the ring when an ex-convict (William Bishop) becomes a rising heavyweight fighter and a championship contender--and then, on the eve of the big fight, finds the man who can prove that he was framed for the crime for which he served time. "The fight scenes hold the spectator on the edge of his seat"--Harrison's Reports.


Theatrical Release: 16 July 1952 (USA)


DVD Review: VCI (Forgotten Noir, Vol. 13) - Region 0 - NTSC

Big thanks to Gregory Meshman for the Review!

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Region 0 - NTSC

Runtime 1:15:45

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.62 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

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


Audio Dolby Digital 2.0 (English)
Subtitles None
Features Release Information:
Studio: VCI

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• 2 films on one disc
• Breakdown Theatrical Trailer (2:02)
• Man Bait Trailer (1:35)
• Deadly Game Trailer (1:08)
• The Man from Cairo Trailer (1:52)

DVD Release Date: February 23, 2010
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Chapters 12



Two films that have nothing to do with film noir are presented in Forgotten Noir, Vol. 13 Collection. Breakdown is a pretty standard boxing drama that has some noir elements, but this is for sure not Set-Up, Champion or Body and Soul; of many film noir sources I checked, only IMDb lists this title as a film noir. It's a pretty standard low-budget programmer released by VCI with a nice, interlaced transfer. There is very little damage evident on the print and despite some noise on the mono soundtrack, it is good enough without undergoing a restoration. VCI also includes an original trailer for this film with 3 additional trailers for films already available from VCI in Forgotten Noir Set 2 (The Man from Cairo) or Hammer Film Noir (Man Bait and Deadly Game) collections.


The second feature, Eye Witness or Your Witness, is even farther from noir as Breakdown. It's a slow mystery with some comedy elements of a stranger in a strange land (in this case, an American coming over to England). Robert Montgomery put his spin on noir with experimental Lady in the Lake and Ride the Pink Horse, but in 1949 he went over to England to direct and star in this mystery, produced by Joan Harrison (who co-wrote Hitchcock's early 1940's films and produced many fine film noirs). The movie was released in UK by Warner in January of 1950, and 7 months later Eagle Lion released it in US, removing about 6 minutes of running time. On this disc, VCI presents unedited 100-minute UK version of the film. Compared to its co-feature, Eye Witness print has more damage, but it's still a decent interlaced transfer. There are no subtitles for either film, and besides the trailers mentioned above, no other extras. An ok double feature time-waster for a rainy afternoon, but don't look for forgotten noir masterpieces in this collection.

  - Gregory Meshman


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(aka "Eye Witness" )


directed by Robert Montgomery
UK 1950

Eye Witness (aka: Your Witness): Made in the Hitchcock style (and produced by longtime Hitchcock partner Joan Harrison), this witty English-made mystery/courtroom drama stars Robert Montgomery (who also directed) as a New York lawyer who comes to England to help a wartime pal (Michael Ripper) wrongly accused of murder. Who is the mysterious missing witness and will she be found in time to save a man's life?


Theatrical Release: 6 March 1950 (UK)

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