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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Paso a paso" )


directed by Phil Rosen
USA 19

In this espionage drama, a WW II veteran teams up with a government secretary and begins hunting a gang of Nazi agents who are seeking the secret documents carried by the G-man they killed. The two heroes are hindered on their hunt by fellow government agents who believe the two are responsible for the FBI agent's death. Mayhem ensues until the two prove their innocence, capture the culprits, and save the US from fascism.


On her first day of work, secretary Evelyn Smith learns that her employer, Senator Remmy of Southern California, is involved in monitoring fugitive Nazi spy activities. At Remmy's deserted seacliff house, Evelyn, who was hired by Remmy because she claimed to have worked for a friend of his in Washington, is asked to transcribe a telephone message from investigator James Blackton. During the phone call, Blackton discovers a spy microphone dangling outside his window and tells Remmy that he will relay his findings face-to-face that day. Desiring privacy, Remmy asks Evelyn to spend the afternoon on the beach, and she happily goes for a swim. While driving along the seaside highway, former Marine sergeant Johnny Christopher spots Evelyn in her bathing suit and stops with his dog Bazooka. After stripping to his bathing suit, Johnny chats with Evelyn, but she brushes him off and returns to Remmy's house. When she walks through the front door, however, she is ambushed by two strange men. Johnny, meanwhile, returns to his car and discovers that he has locked his keys inside.


Television Premiere: August 23rd, 1946


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DVD Review: Vértice Cine - Region 2 - PAL

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Vértice Cine

Region 2 - PAL

Runtime 1:01:08 (4% PAL speedup)

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 8.64 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), Dolby Digital 1.0 (Spanish)
Subtitles Spanish, None (non-removable depending on the player)
Features Release Information:
Studio: Vértice Cine

Aspect Ratio:
Original - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• None

DVD Release Date: November 1st, 2014
Keep Case inside cardboard slipcase

Chapters 10





Step By Step was on our Complete Noir Listing but didn't make it over to the Essential List - and it doesn't make the grade now despite having two Noir-ish leads with Lawrence Tierney (Born to Kill, Bodyguard, The Hoodlum etc.) and Anne Jeffreys (Riff-Raff). It leans more to an espionage drama with some flag-waving, and doesn't live up to 'dark cinema' expectations.

It's another Spanish single-layered disc from an inferior source - most likely analog. It's quite weak at the opening but settles down although is never stellar. It has a nice thickness but has some softness and speckles. Standard fare for most of these Spanish DVD productions as the below captures can testify.

As with, the legit Noir, Strange Bargain from Vértice Cine, the big issue for some may be that, although the menu allows you to remove the Spanish subtitles - "Sin Subtitulos" (English audio and Spanish DUB are available) it may not be removable on all machines, despite they are definitely NOT burned-in. My superior player couldn't do it - but my lesser machine was able to successfully remove them. And my computer software was also able to do it as well. This is an unusual problem for DVD although we see it occasionally on Blu-rays (Sidonis being the main perpetrator) from Europe (see our reviews of Losey's M, Garden of Evil, Warlock and Broken Arrow).

The mono sound is decent supporting the score by Paul Sawtell (Silver City, The Fly, Denver and Rio Grande), and, I repeat, the Spanish subtitles are optional via the menu - but some machines may still have difficulty, we presume, that it can also be 'got around' with a re-burn. There is a nice booklet included - photos and Spanish text.

I was hopeful for Step By Step and the performers made it more captivating, but I expect the film's appeal will be limited. Pass.  

  - Gary Tooze



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Vértice Cine

Region 2 - PAL


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