S E A R C H D V D B e a v e r
(aka 'Mit stahlharter Faust')
Singing cowboy Kirk Douglas takes over Jeanne Crain's ranch in one of the more sexually askew films of King Vidor's postwar period. A mad film, of harsh Technicolor and spatially impossible camera angles, and a fine example of the unlimited leeway afforded by the western genre.
A fine, edgy Western, handsomely shot by Russell Metty and beautifully paced by Vidor. A conventional range war plot is lent some of the sweaty unpredictability of Duel in the Sun by the love-hate relationship between Douglas, as the cowboy with a pathological hatred of barbed wire, and Crain as the cattle baroness whose cause he eventually abandons in defence of individual liberties. Fine performances, not least from Claire Trevor as the good-hearted saloon girl, and Boone as the villainous gunslinger. (From a novel by Dee Linford.)
Theatrical Release: March 24th, 1955
DVD Review: Süddeutsche Zeitung - Region 2 - PAL
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|Distribution||Süddeutsche Zeitung - Region 2 - PAL|
|Runtime||1:25:27 (4% PAL Speedup)|
Average Bitrate: 5.30 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.
|Audio||English (Dolby Digital 2.0)|
Very solid western from Vidor with restless cowboy Dempsey (Douglas) caught up in an open pastureland dispute with unsavory 'barbed-wire' as a potential solution - thus another era reaches closure. Crain is her usual comely self and Richard Boone is stern-faced opposition. Excellent!
The single-layered German DVD looks impressive - anamorphic hovering around 2.0:1 - and is progressive with solid detail. I'm sure the SD isn't bringing out the Technicolor to its most vibrant hues but they don't look especially drab here either. The image is from a clean source and I see no signs of manipulation. This provides an excellent presentation. Audio is unremarkable but close, I'll wager, to the way it was produced. Defaults to an untested Deutsche DUB (but no subtitles) - the original English track provided services the film adequately. There is also a French DVD version but I don't know about the quality.
No extras in the bare bones disc but the package is an impressive 4-teired digipak with color photos and some words on Vidor (German language). Man Without a Star is a very above-average western - one I know I will revisit. Cheers to the reasonably-priced DVD.