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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Every Minute Counts" )


directed by Don Siegel
USA 1953

A defense lawyer risks his career to expose a killer no one else believes exists in this tense noir thriller directed by Don Siegel and starring Teresa Wright and Macdonald Carey. When a farmer and his housekeeper are murdered by an intruder, the police arrest George Braden (John Craven), a hired hand who confesses to spare his pregnant wife Ellen (Wright) the stress of interrogation. Angering the tight-knit community by agreeing to defend the accused, attorney Doug Madison (Carey) tries but loses the case, and Braden is sentenced to die. With time running out and the execution just hours away, Madison races the clock to find the real killer and prove his client’s innocence. Eerily anticipating the 1959 killings that would later inspire In Cold Blood, Count the Hours was shot by John Alton, an Oscar-winning* cinematographer whose credits include the classic noirs He Walked by Night, Raw Deal and T-Men.


Director Don Siegel keeps the events in Count the Hours moving so quickly that no one has time to ponder the film's huge lapses in logic. MacDonald Carey stars as a defense attorney Doug Madison who races against time to save migrant ranchhand George Braden (John Craven) from execution. While Madison tells himself that his motives are altruistic, there are those who believe that the lawyer has designs on Braden's wife, Ellen (Teresa Wright). Sacrificing everything in the pursuit of justice, Madison finally finds the crucial evidence that will free his client--if he can deliver the goods, and the actual murderer, before the switch is thrown in the death house. Produced by Benedict Bogeaus, whose wife Dolores Moran plays a supporting role, Count the Hours was somewhat pointlessly retitled Every Hour Counts when released in England.


Television Premiere: April 1st, 1953


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

DVD Box Cover

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Warner Home Video

Region 0 - NTSC

Runtime 1:14:24

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 7.41 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.


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

Aspect Ratio:
Original - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• Trailer (1:38)

DVD Release Date: June 21st, 2016
Keep Case

Chapters 10





Count the Hours has a lot going for it - a few Noir leanings - great cinematography from John Alton (The Big Combo, Witness to Murder, Bury Me Dead) and adept performances from lovely Teresa Wright (Pursued, Shadow of a Doubt, The Best Years of Our Lives), stalwart Macdonald Carey (Stranger at My Door) and warped Jack Elam (Rawhide).

It's standard single-layered MoD (Made-on-Demand) disc but progressive in the original 1.33:1 aspect ratio and looks solid. This is labeled under the Warner's "Archive Collection" marquee and the image is a shade inconsistent - occasional crispness and a few softer moments - but generally quite pleasing. Black levels are light-ish but acceptable, if far from stellar, transfer. Decent enough for SD. 

The mono sound is decent supporting the score and there are no subtitles offered.  The score is credited to the team of Louis Forbes (The Bat, Pitfall, Silver Lode, The Man Who Cheated Himself, The Crooked Way, Escape to Burma, Slightly Scarlet, The River's Edge) and Howard Jackson (It Happened One Night, Tobor the Great, Cry Terror! Run For Cover, 1933's Supernatural, Sam Fuller's Merrill's Marauders ) and adds to the film's atmosphere. No supplements aside from a trailer.

I've always had a crush on Teresa Wright and enjoyed the courtroom aspect as well as the dark atmosphere - it's a grim one but a good one. Recommended!  

  - Gary Tooze



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DVD Box Cover

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Warner Home Video

Region 0 - NTSC


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