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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Cry Danger [Blu-ray]

 

(Robert Parrish, 1951)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: RKO Radio Pictures

Video: Olive Films

 

Disc:

Region: 'A' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)

Runtime: 1:19:41.777

Disc Size: 17,546,597,647 bytes

Feature Size: 17,449,316,352 bytes

Video Bitrate: 26.94 Mbps

Chapters: 9

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: April 8th, 2014

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.33:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

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)

 

Subtitles:

None

 

Extras:

• None

 

Bitrate:

 

 

 

Description: Restored by the UCLA Film & Television Archive. Restoration funding provided by the Film Noir Foundation. Dick Powell (Murder, My Sweet) plays Rocky, an innocent man just released from prison. He's on the hunt for a 100,000 bankroll he had allegedly stolen and the people who framed him. Delong (Richard Erdman, The Men) is a disabled Marine veteran who produced the recent evidence that led to Rocky's release. He now wants part of the $100,000 in exchange for his help. However, after serving 5 years of a life-sentence for a crime he didn't commit, Rocky has a different plan. He wants to bring the real crooks to justice and clear the name of his friend Danny Morgan, who's unjustly serving time for the same crime. The stellar cast includes Rhonda Fleming (Out of the Past) as Rocky's old flame now married to his best friend Danny, Regis Toomey (The Big Sleep) as a tough-as-nails honest cop looking to bust the real criminals, William Conrad (Body and Soul) as Castro, the crime boss who may have framed Rocky and Danny, and Jay Adler (The Big Combo) the superintendent of a sleazy trailer court where Rocky and Delong are now living. This film noir classic was beautifully shot in glorious black-and-white by legendary cinematographer Joseph F. Biroc (It's a Wonderful Life) and directed by Robert Parrish (The Purple Plain).

 

 

The Film:

A former child actor (City Lights) and celebrated editor (for Ford; an Oscar-winner for Body and Soul), Parrish directed one master-piece (The Wonderful Country), one almost-masterpiece (The Purple Plain) and a gallery of engaging, civilised movies before getting tangled in the shoals of the swinging British '60s. His major theme is of a man seeking not so much an identity as a place to belong, and here, in his directorial debut, the theme lurks behind a low-budget thriller framework as ex-bookie Powell exits the slammer to get revenge on the bad guys who put him there. Shot in 22 days (Parrish rewrote the script with William Bowers), it's the kind of movie in which, told to expect someone extra for dinner, delicious Fleming smiles 'OK, I'll put more water in the soup'. With excellent support players like a young, thin (for him) William Conrad and Jay Adler, this is a fast, crisp and laconic delight.

Excerpt from Timeout Film Guider located HERE

Dick Powell stars in this suspenseful melodrama, directed by Robert Parrish. Rocky Mulloy (Powell) has recently returned from prison, after being pardoned from a life sentence when new evidence clears him from a robbery conviction. Delong (Richard Erdman), a crippled Marine veteran who concocted the new evidence that got Mulloy released, thinks that Mulloy will be so grateful that he will cooperate with him and share some of the $100,000 Mulloy supposedly has hidden somewhere from the robbery. But Mulloy has other ideas -- instead he wants the use his pardon as a chance to bring the real guilty parties involved in the crime to justice and to help out a needy friend who is still in the penitentiary.

Excerpt from MRQE located HERE

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

Cry Danger an Essential Noir arrives Blu-ray courtesy of Olive Films. This is only single-layered but the film is only 1 hour 20-minutes and the bitrate is reasonably strong. Contrast looks solid. Although I don't know the state before the Film Noir Foundation's restoration this provides a very amenable presentation. Greyscale is adept and there is some impressive detail in close-ups. There are a fair number of outdoor sequences, that are the high point visually but the few darker scenes didn't show a preponderance of noise. There is texture and a few frame specific surface scratches and speckles - but not many of either. The Blu-ray is typical of Olive's strong quality of a vintage film with a following anxious to see it in 1080P.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

The DTS-HD mono track at 818 kbps sounds clear and authentically flat. There is no depth or range to speak of but the score, by a combination of, Paul Dunlap, Emil Newman, Hugo Friedhofer, Arthur Lange is received well in lossless. A few moments are surprisingly crisp.  There are no subtitles and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.

 

Extras :

No supplements - not even a trailer which is the bare-bones route that Olive are going with their releases.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
Cry Danger reeks of Noir devices and characters. Recently released ex-Con, unsavory survivors, a trailer park, diners, bars and lots of questionable gals...  What a great gem to be released in the new format!  The Blu-ray (kudos to the restoration) gives a great presentation. I was very thankful to actually see this so I won't complain about the lack of extras (although this film certinly deserves some discussion!) Strongly recommended! 

Gary Tooze

March 20th, 2014

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.

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60-Inch Class (59.58” Diagonal) 1080p Pioneer KURO Plasma Flat Panel HDTV PDP6020-FD

Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD Player
Momitsu - BDP-899 Region FREE Blu-ray player
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Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

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Gary W. Tooze

 

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