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A view on Blu-ray by Gary W. Tooze

Johnny Come Lately [Blu-ray]

 

(William K. Howard, 1943)

 

 

Review by Gary Tooze

 

Production:

Theatrical: William Cagney Productions

Video: Olive Films

 

Disc:

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

Runtime: 1:37:49.738 

Disc Size: 19,372,425,977 bytes

Feature Size: 19,242,307,584 bytes

Video Bitrate: 24.04 Mbps

Chapters: 8

Case: Standard Blu-ray case

Release date: May 6th, 2014

 

Video:

Aspect ratio: 1.33:1

Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps

Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Audio:

DTS-HD Master Audio English 890 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 890 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 1.0 / 48 kHz / 768 kbps / 16-bit)

 

Subtitles:

None

 

Extras:

• None

 

Bitrate:

 

 

Description: For his first independently-produced starring effort, James Cagney chose the sentimental drama Johnny Come Lately. Cagney plays itinerant newspaperman Tom Richards, who wanders into a small corruption-ridden town. Striking up a friendship with elderly Vinnie McLeod (Grace George in her only movie appearance), the editor of the local newspaper, Tom tries to help Vinnie exposed the community's crooked politicians. He is thwarted in his efforts until Gashouse Mary (Marjorie Main), a wealthy dowager with a shady past, exposes the machinations behind a phony Orphan's Fund. At the insistence of star Cagney, the cast of Johnny Come Lately was filled with familiar character actors (Hattie McDaniel, Edward McNamara, George Cleveland, Margaret Hamilton, Lucien Littlefield) who are herein offered a lot more screen time than was customary. Based on the Louis Bromfield novel McLeod's Folly, Johnny Come Lately was produced by Cagney's brother William; the film garnered an Oscar nomination for Leigh Harline's nostalgic musical score.

 

 

The Film:

In 1906, Tom Richards (James Cagney), a drifter, arrives in Plattsville and befriends newspaper proprietor Vinnie McLeod (Grace George), who is battling the corruption of the town's leading citizen Bill Dougherty (Edward McNamara). He takes over as managing editor of the Plattsville "Shield and Banner" and, despite initial resistance from the oppressed citizens, finally drives Dougherty out of town.

Excerpt from Wikipedia located HEREE

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

Johnny Come Lately has another one of Olive's modest Blu-ray transfers. This is only single-layered with a decent bitrate. It looks good - clean and crisp with some nicely layered contrast. Generally the image is consistent. Visually, it is very solid, but never stellar - there is no depth but the Blu-ray gave me an acceptable presentation. I see a smattering of textures and saw no flaws.

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Audio :

Authentically 1.0 channel mono track via a DTS-HD Master at a lowly 890 kbps. It exports the films sound competently. The score by Leigh Harline (Pickup on South Street, 23 Paces to Baker Street, House of Bamboo, Broken Lance) seems to benefit occasionally sounding 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 all of their releases now.

 

 

BOTTOM LINE:
I love old films and this has something to offer. I didn't find it exceptional in any way - but I still liked it. Cagney is Cagney - with a twist. The Blu-ray is typical Olive - bare-bones with a competent transfer that excels over SD. I'd have to say, again though, for what is here - the price seem exorbitant to me. I'd only recommend to very big fans of Cagney or of vintage films. 

Gary Tooze

April 27th, 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.

Gary's Home Theatre:

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
Marantz SA8001 Super Audio CD Player
Marantz SR7002 THX Select2 Surround Receiver
Tannoy DC6-T (fronts) + Energy (centre, rear, subwoofer) speakers (5.1)

APC AV 1.5 kVA H Type Power Conditioner 120V

Gary W. Tooze

 

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