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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "The Great Manhunt")

 

Directed by Sidney Gilliat
UK 1950

 

Hollywood star Douglas Fairbanks Jr. gives a lively performance as a man on the run in this dramatic thriller from British film legends Frank Launder and Sidney Gilliat. Co-starring Glynis Johns and Jack Hawkins, and with cinematography from Oscar-winning Robert Krasker, State Secret is presented here as a brand-new High Definition remaster from original film elements in its original theatrical aspect ratio.

The East European state of Vosnia appears to outsiders as a civilized and beautiful country but is, in truth, a tightly controlled dictatorship. When a visiting American surgeon is duped into becoming dangerously involved in Vosnian power politics he goes on the run a wanted man, his life is forfeit if he's captured!

***

Visiting in England, an American surgeon Doctor John Marlowe is decoyed to a middle European country, and discovers the operation he is to perform is on the Vosnian dictator. When the latter dies, he is replaced by a look-alike, but Marlowe then becomes the object of a shoot-to-kill, vicious pursuit by the secret police of Vosnia since it is vital to Vosnia that the dictator's death does not become known. Fleeing, he seeks help from an actress, Lisa Robinson, and the two are harried across the countryside.

Posters

Theatrical Release: July 3rd, 1950

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Review: Network - Region 'B' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

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Bonus Captures:

Distribution Network - Region 'B' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:45:38.000        
Video

1.37:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 35,787,944,469 bytes

Feature: 22,198,081,536 bytes

Video Bitrate: 24.98 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

LPCM Audio English 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit

Subtitles English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Network

 

1.37:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 35,787,944,469 bytes

Feature: 22,198,081,536 bytes

Video Bitrate: 24.98 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

US Version reel 1 (7:47)
Secret Publicity an interview with Forbes Taylor (24:54)
Image gallery (2:17)
Those British Faces: Jack Hawkins (26:37)


Blu-ray Release Date:
February 22nd, 2021
Transparent
Blu-ray Case

Chapters 12

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Network Blu-ray (February 2021): Network have transferred Sidney Gilliat's State Secret to Blu-ray. It is cited as being from a "brand-new High Definition remaster from original film elements in its original theatrical aspect ratio". Aside from frequently light frame specific marks (see samples below) and speckles it looks quite pleasing. Contrast is well layered and textures apparent. There is a supportive bitrate on a dual-layered disc. Without a film-level restoration, this is the best way to watch this adventure-thriller, at present.  

NOTE: We have added 70 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

On their Blu-ray, Network use a linear PCM dual-mono track (16-bit) in the original English language. There are a few flat effects but the films adds a strong score by William Alwyn (So Evil My Love, The Running Man, Green For Danger, So Evil My Love, Burn, Witch Burn, Odd Man Out, On Approval, A Night to Remember and The Fallen Idol) adding to the film's atmosphere and tension. Some may recognize Johnny Black's Paper Doll performed by Glynis Johns, Olga Lowe and Therese Van Kye. Network offer optional English subtitles on their Region 'B' Blu-ray.

The Network Blu-ray offers some supplements. The US version for shy of 8-minutes with "The Great Manhunt" title sequence. There is a 25-minute interview with publicist Forbes Taylor entitled "Secret Publicity" as he recalls his work towards the film, filming in Italy, an interesting story of Fairbanks jr. and talks about his career. There is an image gallery and 26-minute Tribute to Jack Hawkins part of a 'Those British Faces' series. In the root of the Blu-ray disc is a PDF of the Campaign Sheet. 

Sidney Gilliat's State Secret is an exceptional thriller. I loved the cross-country escape sequences reminding me of Hitchcock's The 39 Steps. The inclusion of Glynis Johns in the story was pivotal, Jack Hawkins is great as the political-rationalizing Fascist and Douglas Fairbanks Jr. is solid as the fleeing Doctor protagonist. This is really well-made - plenty of adventure, suspense and cliff-hangers. I was very happy to see it via the Network Blu-ray. Certainly recommended!

Gary Tooze

 


Menus / Extras

 


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Light Frame specific damage samples

 

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Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

Bonus Captures:

Distribution Network - Region 'B' - Blu-ray


 


 

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