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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

 

Columbia Noir #3 (Limited Edition) [6 Blu-rays]

 

Johnny O'Clock (1947)     The Dark Past (1948)     Convicted (1950)


Between Midnight and Dawn (1950)     The Sniper (1952)     City of Fear (1959)

________________________________________________

 

NOTE: Columbia Noir #1 Blu-ray with Escape in the Fog (1945), The Undercover Man (1949), Drive a Crooked Road (1954),

5 Against the House (1955), The Garment Jungle (1957) and The Lineup (1958) is reviewed HERE

 

NOTE: Columbia Noir #2 Blu-ray with Framed (1947), 711 Ocean Drive (1950), The Mob (1951), Affair in Trinidad (1952),

 Tight Spot (1955) and Murder By Contract (1958) is reviewed HERE

 

 

For the third volume in its ongoing Columbia Noir series, Indicator return once again to the studio’s archives for a sextet of films which bring together some of the great names of film noir – including Dick Powell, Lee J Cobb, Nina Foch, William Holden, Edmond O’Brien, Dorothy Malone, Glenn Ford, Broderick Crawford, Marie Windsor, and Vince Edwards – in stories of psychoanalysis and cynicism, racketeers and radioactivity, casinos and killing sprees, and cops and convicts.

Presenting all six films for the first time on Blu-ray anywhere in the world, this stunning collection includes a commentary on each film, critical appreciations and analyses, a range of documentary shorts from the forties and fifties, six Three Stooges comedy shorts lampooning the tropes and themes of the titles in the set, and a 120-page book. Strictly limited to 6,000 numbered units.

Posters

Theatrical Release: January 21st, 1947 - February 19th, 1959

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

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

Box Cover

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Bonus Captures:

Distribution Indicator - Region 'B' - Blu-ray
Runtime

Johnny O'Clock (1947): 1:35:43.404

The Dark Past (1948): 1:14:07.067

Convicted(1950): 1:30:50.820

Between Midnight and Dawn (1950): 1:29:03.463

The Sniper (1952): 1:27:57.313

City of Fear (1959): 1:15:10.464

Video

Johnny O'Clock (1947):

1.33:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 42,476,687,890 bytes

Feature: 28,219,917,888 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.96 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

The Dark Past (1948):

1.33:1 1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 24,540,223,917 bytes

Feature: 18,345,330,240 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.01 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Convicted(1950):

1.33:1 1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 24,551,717,525 bytes

Feature: 19,633,812,864 bytes

Video Bitrate: 24.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Between Midnight and Dawn (1950):

1.33:1 1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 24,630,528,421 bytes

Feature: 20,240,268,864 bytes

Video Bitrate: 27.00 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

The Sniper (1952):

1.33:1 1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 24,576,141,766 bytes

Feature: 18,598,702,656 bytes

Video Bitrate: 24.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

City of Fear (1959):

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 40,961,583,252 bytes

Feature: 19,224,647,232 bytes

Video Bitrate: 29.98 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate Johnny O'Clock (1947) Blu-ray:

Bitrate The Dark Past (1948) Blu-ray:

Bitrate Convicted(1950) Blu-ray:

Bitrate Between Midnight and Dawn (1950) Blu-ray:

Bitrate The Sniper (1952) Blu-ray:

Bitrate City of Fear (1959) Blu-ray:

Audio

LPCM Audio English 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit
Commentaries:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Subtitles English (SDH), None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Indicator

 

Edition Details:

JOHNNY O’CLOCK

• Audio commentary with filmmaker and film historian Jim Hemphill (2021)
• Not One Shall Die (1957, 29:28): short film by the United Jewish Appeal, directed by David Lowell Rich and starring Guy Madison, Felicia Farr and Agnes Moorehead, made by the core crew of many Columbia noirs, including cinematographer Burnett Guffey, art director Cary Odell, editor Al Clark, set decorator Frank Tuttle, and composer Morris Stoloff
• Whoops, I’m an Indian! (1936, 17:24): the casino business spells trouble for the Three Stooges
• Original theatrical trailer (1:37)
• Image gallery: promotional and publicity materials

THE DARK PAST

• Audio commentary with academic and curator Eloise Ross (2021)
• The Poised Performance (2021, 13:57): critic and film historian Pamela Hutchinson assesses the career of actor Nina Foch
• The Gulf Screen Guild Theater: ‘Blind Alley’ (1940, 23:03): radio adaptation of the James Warwick play upon which The Dark Past is based, starring Edward G Robinson, Joseph Calleia and Isabel Jewell
• Shivering Sherlocks (1948, 17:29): the Three Stooges get mixed up with a dangerous gang of criminals hiding out at an isolated mansion
• Image gallery: promotional and publicity materials

CONVICTED

• Audio commentary with film historians Troy Howarth and Nathaniel Thompson (2021)
• Codes and Convictions (2021, 29:22): video essay by Jonathan Bygraves which examines Convicted in relation to Columbia Pictures’ other screen adaptations of Martin Flavin’s play The Criminal Code
• So Long Mr. Chumps (1941, 17:24): comedy short starring the Three Stooges in which the trio discover that prison life is a complicated business
• Image gallery: promotional and publicity materials

BETWEEN MIDNIGHT AND DAWN

• Audio commentary with author and entertainment journalist Bryan Reesman (2021)
• Categorically Dependable (2021, 16:07): writer and critic Kim Newman assesses the long, eclectic career of director Gordon Douglas
• Dizzy Detectives (1943, 18:36): comedy short starring the Three Stooges in which the trio play police officers on the trail of a psychopath and a criminal mastermind
• Original theatrical trailer (2:20)
• Image gallery: promotional and publicity materials

THE SNIPER

• Audio commentary with the Film Noir Foundation’s Eddie Muller (2009)
• Introduction by Martin Scorsese (2009, 3:17)
• Three Lives (1953, 23:03): short film made for the United Jewish Appeal, reuniting the main players behind The Sniper, writers Edna and Edward Anhalt, director Edward Dmytryk, and star Arthur Franz
• Three Pests in a Mess (1945, 15:20): comedy short starring the Three Stooges in which the trio become involved in a deadly shooting incident, or so they think, causing panic
• Original theatrical trailer (2:14)
• Image gallery: promotional and publicity materials

CITY OF FEAR

• Audio commentary with film critic and writer Adrian Martin (2021)
• Pulp Paranoia (2010, 6:22): filmmaker Christopher Nolan discusses the influence of film noir
• The Autobiography of a “Jeep” (1943, 9:29): light-hearted documentary produced and directed by Irving Lerner about the then-new, all-purpose vehicle
• The Autobiography of a “Jeep” audio commentary with film historian Jeremy Arnold (2021)
• Hymn of the Nations (1944, 29:58): documentary produced and edited by Lerner, and directed by Alexander Hammid, featuring famed conductor Arturo Toscanini and the NBC Symphony Orchestra performing the music of Giuseppe Verdi, presented in its complete, uncut version
• The Cummington Story (1945, 20:01): documentary short, written and directed by Helen Grayson and Larry Madison, produced by Lerner, and featuring the music of Aaron Copland, re-enacting the stories of a group of refugees who relocated to a small American town during World War II
• Oil’s Well That Ends Well (1958, 16:13): the Three Stooges are convinced they can make money on uranium
• Original theatrical trailer (1:54)
• Image gallery: promotional and publicity materials
 

Limited edition exclusive 120-page book with new essays by Peter Stanfield, David Cairns, Michal Oleszczyk, Adam Scovell, Fintan McDonagh, Andrew Nette, Jeff Billington, and Ramsey Campbell, archival articles and interviews, and film credits
• Limited edition box set of 6,000 numbered units


Blu-ray Release Date:
May 17th, 2021
Transparent Blu-ray Cases inside firm case

Chapters 10 / 10 / 10/ 10 / 10 / 10

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Indicator Blu-ray (May 2021): Indicator have transferred six more Columbia Film Noirs - as part of their Volume 3 boxset. The six films, on individual Blu-ray discs are; Robert Rossen's Johnny O'Clock (1947) with bon vivant gentleman-criminal Dick Powell navigating his way around the underworld, Rudolph Maté's The Dark Past (1948) shining a beacon on mental health, Henry Levin's Convicted (1950) with hard-luck Glenn Ford surviving in the 'Big House', Gordon Douglas's quasi-police-procedural Between Midnight and Dawn (1950), Edward Dmytryk's unsettling The Sniper (1952), and Irving Lerner's City of Fear (1959) - a radiation-exposing thriller with Vince Edwards. Indicator's Columbia Noir #1 Blu-ray set was voted the third best Boxset of the Year in our 2020 Poll. Volume 2 came out on February 15th, 2021. Volume 3 is more than up to that elevated Blu-ray boxset standard.

Indicator's usual top-shelf image quality is on display in excellent HD presentations. To fan's pleasure, all six of these films are having their world premiere on Blu-ray. We have compared each one to previous DVD editions; Johnny O'Clock and Between Midnight and Dawn to the Sony / TCM 2013 Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics IV SD transfers reviewed in full HERE, The Dark Past to 2011's very weak Clásicos años 40 Spanish PAL DVD reviewed HERE, Convicted from the Glenn Ford: Undercover Crimes DVD boxset reviewed HERE, The Sniper to 2009's Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics 1 DVD set reviewed in full HERE, and City of Fear to 2010's Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics II reviewed in full HERE.

Indicator present these all in 1080P, The Sniper from a 2K restoration - the rest are cited as "High Definition remasters" and they look consistent with plenty of grain texture and infrequent small damage marks (light surface scratches that are mostly frame-specific), very few speckles and a generally impressive, film-like image with a notable advance in detail. Yes! The compared captures below support the vast improvement - many of the DVDs had a green hue, weak contrast and compression artifacts. Most show less information in the frame. These Blu-rays are a real treat to revisit in such vastly superior transfers - especially Convicted, The Dark Past, City of Fear and Between Midnight and Dawn looking demonstratively better than the past DVDs.

NOTE: We have added 98 more large resolution Blu-ray captures (in lossless PNG format) for DVDBeaver Patrons HERE

On their Blu-rays, Indicator use linear PCM mono tracks (24-bit) in the original English language. There are effects and gunfire supported with minor depth but the film's audio transfers are authentically flat with scores for four of the films (Johnny O'Clock, The Dark Past, Convicted, and Between Midnight and Dawn) by George Duning (Two Rode Together, The Eddy Duchin Story, 3:10 to Yuma, Jeanne Eagels, The Shadow on the Window, My Sister Eileen, The Mob, Affair in Trinidad and Tight Spot etc.) The Sniper score is by avant garde classical composer and pianist George Antheil - who has written music for In a Lonely Place, Make Way for Tomorrow (1937), Sirocco (1951), House by the River (1950) Tokyo Joe (1949) and other Ray films, including, Knock on Any Door (1949.) For City of Fear it is notable as being scored by Jerry Goldsmith (Alien, Link, Breakout, The Salamander, The Mephisto Waltz, Seconds, Hoosiers, The Blue Max, Breakheart Pass, The Omen) as his first theatrical feature film composition having done some TV movies and TV series before this.  Indicator offer optional English (SDH) subtitles on each of their six Region 'B' Blu-rays.

The Indicator Blu-rays offer commentaries for every film in the set - 5 of them new (2021) - starting with film historian Jim Hemphill on Johnny O'Clock. He discusses how this was the first directorial effort of Robert Rossen who had written many screenplays but is notable for The Hustler. He covers a lot of detail with enthusiasm talking about stars Lee J. Cobb, Dick Powell, Evelyn Keyes, Ellen Drew and Nina Foch quoting various comments on the production by cast and crew. It's well-researched and worth the indulgence. The Dark Past also has a new commentary - this one by academic and curator Eloise Ross. I've enjoyed her previous commentaries on The Great Man's Lady, Berserk!, Internes Can't Take Money and Madame X. She discusses the tonal shifts of the film, it being a tight  with the opening cited as a "Malvin Wald"'ed sense to it. Malvin Daniel Wald was an American screenwriter most famous for writing the 1948 police drama, Jules Dassin's, The Naked City and, this film, The Dark Past among others. He wrote over 150 scripts for motion pictures and TV shows including Peter Gunn, Daktari, and Perry Mason. She is excellent. For Convicted we get film historians buddies Troy Howarth and Nathaniel Thompson providing another insightful and fun commentary. They discuss the validity of the film as a 'Noir', the many stars in the film from Glenn Ford. Broderick Crawford, Dorothy Malone to, often forgotten director, Henry Levin. It's at their usual high standard of rewarding commentary. For Between Midnight and Dawn we get journalist Bryan Reesman giving a solid audio commentary. He continues at his usual fast pace impressing with his breadth of detail regarding the production. He imparts a lot. The Sniper is the only non-new commentary - it's the 2009 one from Eddie Muller. So it's hard to top the "Czar of Noir" and his commentary is worth the revisit. He talks about the "Square Up" opening to accentuate the filmmakers importance of the film topic and counteract any objections to its content in that it is 'real' or based on real statistic. Golden. City of Fear has another of my favorites; Adrian Martin. He immediately speaks to our current fear of a Pandemic but speaks more to its 'B' status, 'ecliptic' narrative and transmutation of Noir. He talks al lot about the director Irving Lerner, the film's realism , how TV changed the dark cinema cycle, Godard's Breathless , Chris Marker. Lerner's Murder By Contract, and German director Harun Farocki (he made over 90 films, the vast majority of them short experimental documentaries) making connections with Lerner and much much more. It's brilliant.

Included is Christopher Nolan 's 6-minute 2010 Pulp Paranoia, 1957's 1/2 hour Not One Shall Die - short film by the United Jewish Appeal, directed by David Lowell Rich and starring Guy Madison, Felicia Farr and Agnes Moorehead, made by the core crew of many Columbia noirs, including cinematographer Burnett Guffey, art director Cary Odell, editor Al Clark, set decorator Frank Tuttle, and composer Morris Stoloff, The Poised Performance a new 14-minute video piece with critic and film historian Pamela Hutchinson assessing the career of actor Nina Foch, The Gulf Screen Guild Theater: ‘Blind Alley’ - a 1940 radio adaptation of the James Warwick play upon which The Dark Past is based, starring Edward G Robinson, Joseph Calleia and Isabel Jewell, a new video essay by Jonathan Bygraves which examines Convicted in relation to Columbia Pictures’ other screen adaptations of Martin Flavin’s play The Criminal Code entitled Codes and Convictions. I loved writer and critic Kim Newman assesses the long, eclectic career of director Gordon Douglas - a new 1/4 hour piece entitled Categorically Dependable. There is more; The Autobiography of a “Jeep” audio commentary with film historian Jeremy Arnold, Hymn of the Nations - a 1944 documentary produced and edited by Lerner, and directed by Alexander Hammid, featuring famed conductor Arturo Toscanini and the NBC Symphony Orchestra performing the music of Giuseppe Verdi, presented in its complete, uncut version and The Cummington Story - a 20 minute documentary short, written and directed by Helen Grayson and Larry Madison, produced by Lerner, and featuring the music of Aaron Copland, re-enacting the stories of a group of refugees who relocated to a small American town during World War II.         

Each film / Blu-ray is supplemented by a Three Stooges short, Image gallery and all but The Dark Past and Convicted have trailers. Also included in the package is another of Indicator's impressive books; an exclusive 120-page book with new essays by Peter Stanfield, David Cairns, Michal Oleszczyk, Adam Scovell, Fintan McDonagh, Andrew Nette, Jeff Billington, and Ramsey Campbell, archival articles and interviews, and film credits - limited to 6,000 numbered units. 

I am so pleased to have these in stellar, world-premiere, Blu-ray editions - each with first-class commentaries and other valuable supplements. I consider these six films all part of the cycle also with an outlier. Where in the previous two editions I found The Garment Jungle from Columbia Noir #1 Blu-ray set and Affair in Trinidad from Columbia Noir #2 Blu-ray set  less 'dark cinema', although not disputing the film's values. A case could be made that The Sniper is in that same skirting the edges of Noir - but it's a highly impacting film in its own right. This may be better than both their other Columbia Noir Blu-ray sets . The package itself is irresistible for Film Noir devotees. It has our highest recommendation. This is another must-own keeper! I can't praise it highly enough.

Gary Tooze

 


Menus / Extras

 

Johnny O'Clock (1947)

 

The Dark Past (1948)

Convicted(1950)

Between Midnight and Dawn (1950)

The Sniper (1952)

City of Fear (1959)


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

 

 

Directed by Robert Rossen

USA 1947

 

Johnny O'Clock (Dick Powell) is a junior partner in a posh casino with Guido Marchettis (Thomas Gomez), but is senior in the eyes of Nelle (Ellen Drew)—Guido's wife and Johnny's ex. This love triangle leads to a web of complications, leaving Police Inspector Koch (Lee J. Cobb) to unravel the threads of deceit and a murdered casino employee's sister (Evelyn Keyes) to tug on Johnny's heartstrings before it's too late. Applying Raymond Chandler's dictum that a good plot is an excuse for a series of exciting scenes, rookie director Robert Rossen strings together tense vignettes—brought vividly to life by cinematographer Burnett Guffey.

 


 

1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Film Noir Classics IV) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Indicator - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


 

1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Film Noir Classics IV) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Film Noir Classics IV) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Film Noir Classics IV) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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Directed by Rudolph Maté

USA 1948

 

When a detective scoffs at his suggestion that an 18 year-old criminal be referred for psychiatric examination Dr. Andrew Collins, the police psychiatrist, tells him the story of his encounter with Al Walker. Walker had a history of violence and killed the prison warden during an escape. He and his gang took the Collins family and their friends hostage but when Dr. Collins learns that Walker has a violent recurring dream, he offers to help him decipher the dream and determine exactly what has driven him to a life of crime and violence.

 

 


 

1) Sony Pictures (Clásicos años 40) - Region 2 - PAL TOP

2) Indicator - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


 

1) Sony Pictures (Clásicos años 40) - Region 2 - PAL TOP

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1) Sony Pictures (Clásicos años 40) - Region 2 - PAL TOP

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1) Sony Pictures (Clásicos años 40) - Region 2 - PAL TOP

2) Indicator - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


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Directed by Henry Levin

USA 1950

 

Convicted stars Glenn Ford as a hotheaded young man convicted of manslaughter. Broderick Crawford plays a sympathetic warden (formerly a tough DA) who tries to help Ford adjust to prison life, eventually giving the lad responsibilities in the warden's office. Ford witnesses the killing of a stoolie by another convict (Millard Mitchell), but adheres to the prison "code" and refuses to talk, even though it means he will be accused of the killing. Mortally wounded by a guard in a subsequent fracas, the real murderer confesses and Ford escapes the electric chair--into the arms of the warden's daughter (Dorothy Malone), with whom he has fallen in love. Convicted was the third film version of Martin Flavin's 1929 stage play The Criminal Code.

 

 


 

1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Glenn Ford Undercover Crimes) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Indicator - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


 

1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Glenn Ford Undercover Crimes) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Glenn Ford Undercover Crimes) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Glenn Ford Undercover Crimes) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Indicator - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


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Directed by Gordon Douglas

USA 1950

 

Dan Purvis (Edmund O'Brien) and Rocky Barnes (Mark Stevens) are lifelong pals who survived WWII and continue their armed service as uniformed prowl car boys on the night shift in LA. But their friendship is tested by their ongoing battle with a ruthless racketeer (Donald Buka), the love they share for a beautiful radio announcer (Gale Storm) and Dan's uncompromising and exaggerated sense of justice. Often seen as the first example of the now commonplace buddy cop movie, this film demonstrates that the genre has always been rife with tension.

 

 


 

1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Film Noir Classics IV) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Indicator - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


 

1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Film Noir Classics IV) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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1) Sony Pictures, Turner Classic Movies (Film Noir Classics IV) - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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Directed by Edward Dmytryk

USA 1952

 

Filmed in San Francisco, this Stanley Kramer production is one of the earliest studies of a murderous psychopath who kills randomly and without motive, making it almost impossible for the police to track him down. This noir pits the rationalism of law and psychiatry against the irrationality of post-traumatic stress and compulsive homicide. Adolphe Menjou, Arthur Franz and Marie Windsor star under the taut direction of Edward Dmytryk. The Sniper has a running time of 87 minutes and is not rated.

 

 

1) Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics, Vol. 1 - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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1) Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics, Vol. 1 - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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1) Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics, Vol. 1 - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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1) Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics, Vol. 1 - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

2) Indicator - Region 'B' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


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Directed by Irving Lerner

USA 1959

 

City of Fear (1958) - Pacy Columbia B-picture from a film-maker who did pretty well on the barest of resources and later won praise from Martin Scorsese (who also hired him as co-editor on New York, New York). Edwards escapes from prison with a sealed cannister he believes contains $1m worth of heroin. In fact he's toting radioactive cobalt that could contaminate the whole city. The premise is more exciting than the execution, but the movie's strong on seedy atmosphere (notable b/w camerawork from Lucien Ballard) and there's an excellent jazz-tinged score from Jerry Goldsmith.

 Excerpt from TimeOut located HERE

 

 

1) Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics, Vol. 2 - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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1) Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics, Vol. 2 - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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1) Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics, Vol. 2 - Region 1 - NTSC TOP

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Box Cover

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or buy directly from Indicator:

Bonus Captures:

Distribution Indicator - Region 'B' - Blu-ray


 


 

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