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(aka "It Started in Tokyo")

 

directed by Joseph M. Newman
USA 1961

Julia Joliet handles fan mail for movie stars. Now someone has a message for her, delivered at point-blank range. David Janssen (TV's The Fugitive) brings his laconic cool to Twenty Plus Two as Tom Alder, a Los Angeles private eye who ties Joliet's murder to the 12-year-old case of a schoolgirl heiress who went out for an ice-cream soda and never came back. As Alder pieces together the crime puzzle against a backdrop of hot jazz and hip Kennedy-era style, he edges closer to the truth...including the surprising truth about his own past. Memorable screen talents Jeanne Crain, Dina Merrill, Agnes Moorehead, Robert Strauss and William Demarest play a shadowy gallery of ladies and dames, eccentrics and losers involved in the investigation.

Posters

Television Premiere: August 31st, 1961

 

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DVD Review: Warner Home Video (Warner Archive Collection) - Region 0 - NTSC

DVD Box Cover

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Distribution

Warner Home Video

Region 0 - NTSC

Runtime 1:42:20
Video

1.78:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.34 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

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

Bitrate

Audio Dolby Digital 1.0 (English)
Subtitles None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Warner Home Video

Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1

Edition Details:
• None

DVD Release Date: March 15th, 2011
Keep Case

Chapters 10

 

 

 

Comments

This is a decent mystery with some surprises. It is directed by Joseph M. Newman (Death in Small Doses, The Gunfight at Dodge City, This Island Earth, Dangerous Crossing, 711 Ocean Drive) and starring, one of my favorites, David Janssen (Smile Jenny Your Dead, The Fugitive, Cult of the Cobra.)

It's standard single-layered MoD (Made-on-Demand) disc but progressive in the slightly bastardized 1.78:1 aspect ratio and looks very good. This is labeled under the Warner's "Archive Collection" marquee and the image is very impressive with only some frame-specific damage at about 40-minutes in. There are also visible cue blips if that bothers you. Contrast levels are pleasing and detail is surprisingly good. The disc supports the film with a better-than-expected SD transfer.

The mono Dolby, lossy, sound is a bit scratchy in the high end of the, awkwardly bold, jazzy score by Gerald Fried (A Killer in the Family, The Baby, and Kubrick's films Fear and Desire, Killer's Kiss, The Killing and Paths of Glory as well as venturing later into work in TV - Star Trek - and also the notable Joseph H. Lewis' western Terror in a Texas Town. There are no subtitles nor any supplements at all.

I agree with the opinions that it was a bit slow and less cohesive (although this may have been purposeful to accentuate the film's climax) - too many phone conversation scenes and two less-relevant airplane sequences plus two two add co-incidences. Great cast with Janssen, as seeker of heirs, at the height of his on-screen charisma, Jeanne Crain (as her career was tailing off), classy Dina Merril reminding me a bit of Constance Towers for some reason and stalwarts Agnes Moorehead and William Demarest. I liked it , as a fan of Janssen even though it took a while to get into the story. I appreciate older films. Not a strong recommendation - but at the right price, those with similar film sensibilities might also enjoy.  

  - Gary Tooze

 



 

DVD Menu
 

 


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  Frame Specific Damage

 


DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

Distribution

Warner Home Video

Region 0 - NTSC

 




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