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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka 'Corkscrew Alley')

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/direct-chair/mann.htm
USA 1948

 

All Joe Sullivan wants is "a breath of fresh air." But when you're serving time in stir for robbery, fresh air is a rare commodity. That's about to change though as mob boss Rick Coyle has greased the skids inside the prison walls, so Joe can make it outside where girlfriend Pat will be waiting.

But things don't exactly go as planned for the duo as car trouble during their getaway forces them to get help from the only person nearby -- strait-laced legal assistant Ann Martin, whom they kidnap and use to evade capture. Things aren't going as planned for Rick either who set up the escape fully expecting the fugitive to get "cut down" so he could keep the $50,000 he owes Joe for taking the rap for him.

Now past the dragnet, the trio each find themselves increasingly conflicted in their loyalties and core beliefs as Joe is torn between the two women, who both care for him, while Pat and Ann each make decisions that prove they're not as bad, or as good, as they're supposed to be.

Raw Deal presents the moviemaking team of director Anthony Mann and cinematographer John Alton at the peak of their success (fresh off their box office smash T-Men), offering dark, moody atmosphere filled with fog-shrouded landscapes and characters who are no strangers to the "left-handed endeavor" of crime. Scenarist John C. Higgins (He Walked By Night ) and co-writer Leopold Atlas offer a taut, suspenseful tale of one man s desperate bid for freedom and the two women who love him.

Dennis O'Keefe, star of the earlier T-Men, contributes a first-rate performance as the determined Joe, with Marsha Hunt (Pride and Prejudice) as Ann and Oscar winning actress Claire Trevor (Key Largo) as the fiercely loyal Pat. Raw Deal also features a suitably slimy Raymond Burr as Rick, John Ireland as Burr's sadistic henchman Fantail, and noir standbys Regis Toomey and Whit Bissell. Raw Deal is film noir at its finest!

***

If you know of Anthony Mann's work at all, it's probably from seeing the minor epic El Cid or Winchester '73, one of many Westerns he made in the '50s and '60s. Mann's first projects of any note, however, were stark, brusque crime stories, three of which have now been made available on home video. T-Men is a super-manly Secret Service tale of chasing counterfeiters, complete with the tersely narrated tedium of a painstaking manhunt on San Francisco's seedier side and a dangerous blonde who just kind of got wrapped up in the whole mess. He Walked By Night takes the police procedural a step further by showcasing the entire LAPD as it methodically tracks down a cunning and inventive killer. Look for a very young Jack Webb as a crime-lab technician, and you'll also see how much he stole from this movie to use on Dragnet—from the show's expositional narrative to the creepy, clipped way the cops talk. Raw Deal switches viewpoints to the criminal and immerses the viewer in noir as we watch a man break out of prison with the help of his girl; take a lovely young hostage; and become entangled in a love triangle while en route to a confrontation with the man who framed him and had him sent up. What begins as campily as the other two eventually takes on deeper shades of meaning as the characters become conflicted about themselves and each other; the script actually improves as the movie progresses. T-Men and He Walked By Night both have gripping black-and-white visuals: There's a chase through L.A.'s cavernous storm sewers, and a hellish murder by live steam. Raw Deal adds dramatic tension to its imagery of foggy back roads and burning hotels to become a minor noir masterpiece.

Excerpt from John Krewson's review at The Onion AV Club located HERE.

 

  Posters

Theatrical Release: 26 May 1948 - USA

Reviews                                                                           More Reviews                                                            DVD Reviews

 

Comparison:

Sony Music - Region 1 - NTSC vs. VCI - Region 0 - NTSC vs. Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Ole Kofoed , Gregory Meshman and Colin Zavitz for the Screen Caps!

 

1) Sony Music - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT

2) VCI - Region 0 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray RIGHT

8

Box Covers

  

Distribution

Sony Music

Region 1 - NTSC

VCI
Region 0 - NTSC
Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:18:29 1:18:30 1:18:35.377
Video

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.31 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.33 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.33:1 1080P / 23.976 fps

Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 23,800,912,428 bytes

Feature: 16,349,859,840 bytes

Video Bitrate: 23.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate:

 

Sony Music

 

Bitrate:

 

VCI

 

Bitrate:

 

Blu-ray

 

Audio English (Dolby Digital 2.0)

English (Dolby Digital 1.0)

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1962 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1962 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 /
48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
Commentary:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB

Subtitles None. None. English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Sony Music

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• No extras!

DVD Release Date: October 18, 2005
Keep Case

Chapters 16
 

Release Information:
Studio: VCI

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• Comes in Boxset with T-Men.
• Film Noir Theatrical trailers (2:12).
• Featurette - Dark Reflections (6:47).
 

DVD Release Date: April 30, 2002
Keep Case

Chapters 12

Release Information:
Studio: C
lassicflix

 

1.33:1 1080P / 23.976 fps

Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 23,800,912,428 bytes

Feature: 16,349,859,840 bytes

Video Bitrate: 23.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video


Edition Details:

Feature length audio commentary by author and film historian Jeremy Arnold
• Deadly is the Male: The Making of Raw Deal - A Featurette with writer and film historian Julie Kirgo, film historian and director Courtney Joyner and biographer and producer Alan K. Rode (9:06)
• Dennis O'Keefe: An Extraordinary Ordinary Guy - A featurette with Jim O'Keefe (son of Dennis O'Keefe) and biographer and producer Alan K. Rode & film historian & director Courtney Joyner (5:39)
• An image gallery with rare stills, posters and other promotional material
• Restoration Comparison (5:30)
• Trailers

24-page booklet with photos etc.

Blu-ray Release Date:
January 16th, 2018
Standard Blu-ray Case

Chapters 24

 

 

Comments

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

ADDITION: Classicflix Region 'A' - Blu-ray - January 2018: This ClassicFlix Blu-ray is another Essential Noir, like their Another Man's Poison, The Killer is Loose, You Only Live Once, and Crime of Passion He Walked By Night and T-Men. This is wonderful news for Noir fans!

This restoration was sourced from a 35mm nitrate fine grain element they acquired from the BFI. After performing a 2K resolution transfer, millions of instances of dirt and scratches were removed along with density flicker, jitter and warps. After over 400 hours of digital video and audio restoration, Classicflic presents this gripping and visually stunning film noir for the first time in HD. The ClassicFlix transfer is 1080P on a single-layered disc with a supportive bitrate. Raw Deal has many dark, shadowy, moments (John Alton cinematographer) and I see no noise or background artifacts. It has a film-like heaviness, textures are present and there is no damage and few speckles unlike both the older, picture-boxed, DVDs. It looks solid in-motion and is easily a far better presentation to the SDs - tighter, sharper etc.. I love the film and was thrilled with my Blu-ray viewing.  

Classicflix use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel (24-bit) and it sounds very strong and consistent in reproducing the film's narration, dialogue and the score by Paul Sawtell (Gun Fury, Silver City, The Fly, Denver and Rio Grande) which supports and augments the drama via the uncompressed. Optional English subtitles are available (see sample below).

We are treated to an excellent feature length audio commentary by author and film historian Jeremy Arnold, author of Turner Classic Movies: The Essentials: 52 Must-See Movies and Why They Matter. I thoroughly enjoyed his extensive knowledge involving details of how the film was shot, dialogue removed and much more. It is very complete and well researched. We also get the 9-minute featurette Deadly is the Male: The Making of Raw Deal with writer and film historian Julie Kirgo, film historian and director Courtney Joyner and biographer and producer Alan K. Rode. Dennis O'Keefe: An Extraordinary Ordinary Guy spends almost 6-minutes with Jim O'Keefe (son of Dennis O'Keefe) and biographer and producer Alan K. Rode & film historian & director Courtney Joyner. There is an image gallery with rare stills, posters and other promotional material and a 5.5 minute restoration comparison plus some excellent re-release trailers. Lastly is a 24-page liner notes booklet included with photos and an essay, Where Love Goes to Die, by Max Alvarez etc.

VERY strongly recommended! A must-own for Noir aficionados. This was pure pleasure, the commentary adds significant value to an already essential package. This is limited to 5,000 copies - don't miss out!

***

ON THE DVD: This appears to have no bone-fide improvement over the VCI edition. At times it looks hazier and other times minutely sharper - it has been brightened a bit, but we have mostly the same damage marks. Since the VCI comes with T-Men and the Dark Reflections featurette I see no reason to buy the Sony.

 - Gary Tooze

About the VCI: Well, I have seen a lot worse non-progressive transfers. This is not too shabby. I think I see some grain and the 'combing' was very minimal. My expectations and satisfaction were all a function of the price and the less-than-stellar reputation of VCI. The Dark Reflections bonus feature is certainly not as insightful as Eddie Mueller from the Warner Noir #2 Boxset, but it wasn't terrible either. Certainly better than your standard fare fillers. I think for the money this is a great substitute until (ever?) these films are put out properly.

Gary W. Tooze

NOTE: This DVD is part of Anthony Mann's Film Noir Double Feature with another disc of Mann's film: T-Men reviewed HERE.

 


DVD Menus
(Sony Music - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT vs. VCI - Region 0 - NTSC - RIGHT)


 

 

 

Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

 


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

 

Subtitle Sample - Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

 

1) Sony Music - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) VCI - Region 0 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

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1) Sony Music - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) VCI - Region 0 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

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1) Sony Music - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) VCI - Region 0 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

8

 

 


 

1) Sony Music - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) VCI - Region 0 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

8


 

1) Sony Music - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) VCI - Region 0 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

8

 


 

1) Sony Music - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) VCI - Region 0 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

8


 

1) Sony Music - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

2) VCI - Region 0 - NTSC - MIDDLE

3) Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

8

 

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Distribution

Sony Music

Region 1 - NTSC

VCI
Region 0 - NTSC
Classicflix - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 




 

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