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Directed by Lewis Allen
USA 19
55

 

With fear of communism running rampant, Hollywood scripts of the 1950s often dealt with Soviet plots to undermine the American way of life. One example is United Artists' A Bullet for Joey (1955), starring Edward G. Robinson as a police inspector on the trail of a spy who plots to kidnap an important American atomic scientist. George Raft co-stars as the gangster who is hired to carry out the abduction - but balks when he learns what is at stake and helps the G-man keep the world safe for democracy.

Robinson had personal experience with the Red Scare in the early 1950s when columnists and other writers began to imply that he was either a communist or a communist sympathizer. The witch-hunting publication Red Channels listed him as having been connected with 11 alleged communist fronts. To clear his name, Robinson appeared before the House Un-American Activities Committee three times beginning in 1950. The HUAC eventually cleared him with this finding: "According to the evidence of this committee, you are a good, loyal and intensely patriotic American citizen." But in paranoia-prone Hollywood, damage had already been done to Robinson's career. With no offers forthcoming, he turned to European films and the Broadway stage. Eventually he was able to rebuild his Hollywood career with such films as Vice Squad (1953), The Violent Men (1955), and
A Bullet for Joey.

Excerpt from Turner Classic Movies website located HERE

 

  Posters

Theatrical Release: April 15th, 1955

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Comparison:

MGM - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - RIGHT

 

Box Covers

  

  

Also available in Film Noir: The Dark Side of Cinema [Blu-ray] (Big House, U.S.A., A Bullet For Joey, He Ran All the Way, Storm Fear, Witness to Murder):

   

Distribution MGM Home Video - Region 1 - NTSC Kino Lorber
Region 'A' -
Blu-ray
Runtime 1:27:00  1:27:09.224 
Video 1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 6.33 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s 

1.75:1 Disc Size: 19,505,121,895 bytes

Feature Size: 18,346,137,600 bytes

Total Bitrate: 24.93 Mbps

Single-layered Blu-ray MPEG4 - AVC / 1080P

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

Bitrate:

Bitrate: Blu-ray

Audio English (Dolby Digital mono), DUBs: Spanish (Dolby Digital mono), French (Dolby Digital mono) DTS-HD Master Audio English 1624 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1624 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Subtitles English, Spanish, None None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: MGM Home Video

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• none

DVD Release Date: July 10th, 2007

Keep Case
Chapters: 20

Release Information:
Studio: Kino Lorber

 

1.75:1 Disc Size: 19,505,121,895 bytes

Feature Size: 18,346,137,600 bytes

Total Bitrate: 24.93 Mbps

Single-layered Blu-ray MPEG4 - AVC / 1080P

 

Edition Details:

• Trailers for A Bullet For Joey (2:17), He Ran All the Way (2:13), Witness to Murder (2:08)
 

Blu-ray Release Date: November 17th, 2015
Standard
Blu-ray case

Chapters: 8

 

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray October 15': Now  accurately widescreen (1.75:1), Kino Lorber's Blu-ray get a 1080P transfer. We get more information on the sides and less on the top and bottom. It is single-layered with a supportive bitrate and a little bit lighter/brighter than the DVD visuals. The film has a lot of texture and thickness with modest detail but in advance of the SD. It does seem it may be horizontally stretched (fatter faces) and there are still some light scratches and a few speckles but it does look quite good in-motion.

Kino Lorber use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel at 1624 kbps. It exports the minor gunplay with some depth and the score by Harry Sukman (Forty Guns, Verboten!, The Crimson Kimono, Underworld U.S.A., Someone's Watching Me!) sounds decent in the lossless with some occasional orchestral depth. There are no subtitles and the Blu-ray disc is region 'A'-locked.

No supplements beyond trailers for A Bullet For Joey, He Ran All the Way, Witness to Murder.

Good, solid cops and robbers with Edward G. and Raft. It's a decent replacement if you are craving some Noir. Presently almost 50% OFF Pre-order.

***

ON THE DVD: NOTE WhiteSheik says -: "A Bullet For Joey - clearly an open matte transfer - in 1955 this film was projected at 1:85 in the US, as is clearly and obviously evident by the abnormal amount of headroom in every shot, which completely subverts the framing." (Thanks Brian!)

Decent progressive, single-layered, transfer from MGM. Fair contrast and acceptable grey tones and the image is fairly clean. Still some artifacts but its a little better than I was anticipating from the usual lackluster manner that MGM tends to treat vintage films.

No extras at all but there are optional subtitles and a couple of DUBs available. The lack of extras makes the price on the exorbitant side. The film, although certainly not a pure representative of the Noir style - has some of the signature markers. It does have a favorite Noir gal - Audrey Totter. For hardcore 'noirists' only. 

Gary W. Tooze

 


DVD Menus


 

Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

 


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

 

Subtitle Sample (no subtitles on the Blu-ray)

 

1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' -  - BOTTOM

 

Screen Captures

 

1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) MGM - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

More Blu-ray Captures


Box Covers

  

  

Also available in Film Noir: The Dark Side of Cinema [Blu-ray] (Big House, U.S.A., A Bullet For Joey, He Ran All the Way, Storm Fear, Witness to Murder):

   

Distribution MGM Home Video - Region 1 - NTSC Kino Lorber
Region 'A' -
Blu-ray




 

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