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(aka "Crosstown" )

 

directed by Phil Karlson
USA 1953

 

Ernie Driscoll (John Payne) is an ex-fighter who came within seconds of winning the world championship. He's now forced to eke out a living driving a cab. A basically decent guy, he has lots of people who care about him, including Linda James (Evelyn Keyes), a slightly ditsy actress friend -- but Ernie also has a short fuse, especially where his wife Pauline (Peggie Castle) is concerned. His rage boils over when he spots her kissing another man, but her unfaithfulness turns out to be the least of his worries. The man she's seeing, Vic Rawlins (Brad Dexter), is a career criminal with both the police and his former partners after him, and he sees Ernie as the perfect fall-guy. The law and Rawlins' criminal associates are soon closing in on Ernie, while he tries desperately -- with Linda's help -- to buy the time he needs to unravel this nightmare.

***

In this classic film noir, a down-on-his-luck former boxing contender (John Payne, The Crooked Way, Hidden Fear), turned cab driver has to hide from the police when he s accused of murdering his badgering wife when her lifeless body turns up in the back of his cab. On the run and out of time, he needs to bring the real killer to justice before the cops and the thugs responsible for the set-up get their hands on him. Top-notch direction by the great Phil Karlson (Kansas City Confidential) and featuring a great cast that includes Evelyn Keyes (The Prowler), Brad Dexter (The Magnificent Seven), Frank Faylen (Riot in Cell Block 11), Peggie Castle (I, the Jury) and Jay Adler (The Killing).

Posters

Theatrical Release: 2 October 1953 (New York)

Reviews                                                       More Reviews                                                        DVD Reviews

 

Comparison:

MGM (MGM Limited Edition Collection) - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Gregory Meshman for the Review!

1) MGM - Region 0 - NTSC - LEFT

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

 

Box Cover

 

 

    

Distribution

MGM

Region 0 - NTSC

Kino Lorber
Region 'A' -
Blu-ray
Runtime 1:23:03 1:23:22.038
Video

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 6.21 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 18,936,721,707 bytes

Feature: 17,014,904,832 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 23.88 Mbps

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

Bitrate

Bitrate: Blu-ray

Audio Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono (English)

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1563 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1563 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Commentary:

Dolby Digital Audio English 256 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 256 kbps

Subtitles None None
Features Release Information:
Studio: MGM

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• None

DVD Release Date: January 18th, 2011
Keep Case

Chapters 9

Release Information:
Studio: Kino Lorber

 

1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 18,936,721,707 bytes

Feature: 17,014,904,832 bytes

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 23.88 Mbps


Edition Details:
• Audio Commentary by Film Historian Eddie Muller

• 99 River Street Trailer (2:13) - Trailers for Hidden Fear (2:03), Shield For Murder (1:45), He Ran All the Way (2:13)
 

Standard Blu-ray case

Blu-ray Release Date: June 21st, 2016

Chapters: 8

 

 

 

Comments

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

 

ADDITION: Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray June 16': The 2011 DVD was horribly green and looks slightly vertically stretched beside Kino Lorber new 1080P transfer which shows some texture and a pleasing film-like heaviness. It's single-layered with a decent, but not stellar, bitrate for the 1 hour 23-minute film. It's imperfect but fairly consistent and a giant leap beyond the SD.


Kino Lorber use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel track at 1563 kbps (16-bit) and it sounds clean with minor depth in the film's effects (boxing match etc.) The dialogue is audible and the score by
Arthur Lange (Cry Danger) and Emil Newman (Hondo) - who also combined on Woman on the Run - and the score here augments the film's dark expression. There are no subtitles offered and the Blu-ray disc is region 'A'-locked.

 

Immense value for Noir fans in the new audio commentary by film historian Eddie Muller giving essential detail and background on this highly-regarded gem. Full marks for its inclusion. There are also trailers for 99 River Street, Hidden Fear, Shield For Murder, and He Ran All the Way.

 

The Blu-ray gets our highest recommendation - both for the film, it's improved digital presentation and especially the Muller commentary. Don't hesitate for a minute!

***

ON THE DVD: 99 River Street is an excellent, but little seen thriller from United Artists from 1953. It became the first classic film noir released in MGM's made-on-demand service and our first review from MGM Limited Edition Collection line. The disc starts with a disclaimer that "the best source materials available" were used, but overall the transfer looks excellent - good contrast and very minimal damage on the print. Unfortunately, the disc is interlaced.

The audio is without any distortion and is clean. Per usual standards for these MOD releases, there are no subtitles and chapters are fixed at every 10 minutes, making 9 total for this 83-minute film. There are no extras, but we still highly recommend this release just on the quality of the film itself.

  - Gregory Meshman

 


DVD Menus
 

 

Kino Lorber - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

 


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

 

Screen Captures

 

1) MGM - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

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

 


1) MGM - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

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

 


1) MGM - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

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

 


1) MGM - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

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

 


1) MGM - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

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

 


1) MGM - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

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

 


  Interlacing (Bartender's hands)

1) MGM - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP

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

 

More Blu-ray Captures


Box Cover

 

 

    

Distribution

MGM

Region 0 - NTSC

Kino Lorber
Region 'A' -
Blu-ray

 

 




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