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Shack Out on 101 [Blu-ray]
(Edward Dein, 1955)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Allied Artists Pictures
Region: 'A' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 17,774,443,542 bytes
Feature Size: 17,645,254,656 bytes
Video Bitrate: 26.86 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: September 24th, 2013
Aspect ratio: 1.78:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 818 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 818 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit)
Description: Check into a hotbed of lethal cloak and dagger in Shack Out on 101. An attractive waitress (Terry Moore) at a seaside caf‚ gets caught in a web of treacherous intrigue when she discovers that her workplace is a secret station for spies. It seems that the caf‚ is close to an experimental lab that harbors national defense secrets and a frantic ring of sinister spies have come to steal them. It's now up to the desperate waitress and a network of undercover FBI agents to stop the diabolical scheme, but not before they all stop along the way for a sizzling round of passion and romance. The stellar cast includes Hollywood legend Lee Marvin (Point Blank), Frank Lovejoy (The Americano), Keenan Wynn (The Mechanic) and Whit Bissell (He Walked by Night). Stylishly directed by cult director Edward Dein (Curse of the Undead) and beautifully shot in glorious black-and-white by the great Floyd Crosby (High Noon).
It is all but impossible to dislike this ultra-cheap "Cold War paranoia" melodrama. Virtually the entire picture takes place on a single set, representing a rundown roadside diner. Lee Marvin plays the aptly named Slob, a lecherous short-order cook who lusts after shapely waitress Kotty (Terry Moore). Also interested in Kotty is a scientist known only as The Professor (Frank Lovejoy), who spends the better part of his free time at the diner's counter. It turns out that the Professor is a traitor, exchanging top-secret information with Slob, who's actually a commie agent. Only the Professor isn't a traitor, see, he's really . . . But why spoil the film for the uninitiated? For the record, Keenan Wynn and Whit Bissell are also in Shack Out on 101.Excerpt from MRQE located HERE
Lee Marvin is Slob in this trash classic about the efforts of hash slinger Moore to combat Communism while juggling the lecherous advances of nearly all her co- stars. Absolutely one of a kind, with most of the action taking place on a single shabby set (Wynn's beanery).Excerpt from TCM located HERE
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
Shack Out on 101 on Blu-ray from Olive Films has beautiful grain textures. Predictably, single-layered but the hour 20-minute film seems reasonably supported with nicely layered contrast. Thee is some minor speckles but generally we have a clean image with some impressive detail in close-ups. Detail rises via the 1080P resolution. This 1.85:1 film is transferred in 1.78. If you scrutinize there are a few artifacts visible - people who project may notice this. The Blu-ray gave me a decent viewing - I especially appreciated the grain.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
Standard DTS-HD mono track at 818 kbps. There is no depth or range to speak of but it seems a faithful transfer without flaws. There is an original score by Paul Dunlap (Portland Expose, Big House U.S.A., Target Earth, Park Row, Cry Vengeance) and it adds some atmosphere - boosted by the lossless. There are no subtitles and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.
No supplements - not even a trailer which is the route that Olive are going with almost all of their releases.
September 24th, 2013
About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 5000 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.
Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who
focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I
find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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