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"The movie business is macabre. Grotesque.
It is a combination of a football game
and a brothel."
-- Federico Fellini
May 142019
 

PRISONER OF SECOND AVENUE (1975) New 2019 1080p HD Master 

In this adaptation of his stage play, Neil Simon captures America’s infamous mid-Seventies malaise among the upper middle-class microcosm of Midtown Manhattan. Ann Bancroft and Jack Lemon star as Edna and Mel Edison, whose existence is upended when Mel loses his job. As the city descends into bankruptcy and chaos around them, Mel bravely fights for his innate right to kvetch as he flirts with having nervous breakdown. Director Melvin Frank (Mr. Blanding Builds His Dream House) lends his gift for family farce while cinematographer Philip Lathrop (Portnoy’s Complaint) captures the Big Apple as it slides from glamour to gritty in a brand-new crystal-clear high definition transfer on Blu-ray. Special Features: Dinah! Segment Featuring Anne Bancroft and a Gag Reel; Vintage Featurette “The Making of the Prisoner of Second Avenue”; Theatrical Trailer (HD). Also available on DVD! 16×9 Letterbox

Rare and Hard-to-Find Debuts on DVD

SOUTH OF SUEZ (1940) Now on DVD

Eli Snedeker (George Tobias) runs his diamond mine with an iron first and the engineering skills of John Gamble (George Brent). Tiring of Snedeker’s sadistic treatment and the attempted seductions of Snedeker’s wife Delia (Lee Patrick), Gamble quashes Snedeker’s attempt to buy out Roger Smythe’s (Miles Mander) neighboring claim and persuades Smythe to take him on as a partner. Smythe’s fortunes turnaround thanks to Gamble’s efforts, and the pair discover the fabulous Star of Africa – a diamond of astonishing size and beauty. Gamble and Smythe make plans to sell their diamonds and rendezvous in Alexandria when Snedeker strikes, leaving Gamble framed for murder. Reinventing himself as wealthy financier John Bradley, Gamble tracks down Smythe’s daughter Katherine (Brenda Marshall) to give her the Star of Africa – but the diamond is Exhibit A in the murder case against John Gamble!

LADY SCARFACE (1941) Now on DVD

Stage Titan Dame Judith Anderson took the title role in this zippy thriller between her twin Broadway triumphs as two of drama’s most illustrious villainess, Lady MacBeth and Medea. The hunt is on for Chicago criminal mastermind Slade (Anderson), the sinister genius behind a series of daring and deadly robberies. Doggedly pursued by police Lieutenant Bill Mason (Dennis O’Keefe), Slade is aided in her evasions by Mason’s assumption that Slade is a man. Luckily for the lieutenant, he has lady reporter Ann Rogers (Frances Neal) by his side and she obtains a quest-changing clue for Mason – an envelope stuffed with Slade’s stolen loot addressed to a “Mary Jordan c/o the Leonard Sheldon Hotel.” Bill and Ann head for New York to set a trap, only for a second Mary Jordan to claim the envelope. Is this Mary, a newlywed, an innocent bystander or another feint by the evil Slade?

GANGWAY FOR TOMORROW (1943) Now on DVD

During the war, five strangers enjoy a silent carpool ride to their aircraft plant when the driver (Charles Arnt) surprises them with an invitation to Sunday supper, which triggers a wave of reflective vignettes among the riders about what they were doing before the war. Margo stars as French nightclub singer Lisette in a Casablanca-style thriller. Robert Ryan is the underdog race-car driver Joe Dunham in a rousing sports story. James Bell is a prison warden in a film noir tale of crime and punishment. Amelita Ward stars as Miss America in a showbiz drama of lessons learned and love lost. And finally, acting great John Carradine steals the show in a Capra-esque tale of an educated hobo who rediscovers his conscience in a small town America. Radio drama king Arch Oboler crafts the screenplay of this most unique anthology picture.

 THE GORILLA MAN (1943) Now on DVD

Gravely wounded following a daring night time commando raid, Captain Craig Killian (John Loder) barely makes it back to to the closest English hospital, which happens to be a private sanitarium. Little does anyone suspect that Killian has been intercepted by Nazi spies who secretly run the place – and it’s the very same nest Killian uncovered on his mission. Dubbed “The Gorilla Man” for his uncanny climbing ability, the Captain demands to be released in order to deliver the intelligence to command but the dastardly Nazi doctors hatch a desperate scheme to discredit Killian, claiming that he is delusional from a brain injury. When Killian escapes the hospital, the Nazis take their evil plan a step further, framing him for a brutal, psychotic murder. Now a fugitive in his own land, Killian will risk it all to complete his mission.

WHAT A BLONDE (1945) Now on DVD

Wealthy lingerie manufacturer F. Farrington Fowler (Leon Errol) has a problem: he’s run out of gas coupons due to wartime rationing. With the aid his rascally butler, Pomeroy (Richard Lane), the two men hatch a scheme to keep his limo running while Mrs. Fowler (Lydia Bilbrook) is out of town. Since carpooling qualifies for extra coupons, the plan is to hire and board people to ride with Fowler into New York City every morning. One of whom is a synthetic silk inventor (Michael St. Angel) who has been trying to see him for weeks. The other is Pat Campbell (Veda Ann Borg) a showgirl friend of Pomeroy, who brings an entire troupe of dancing girls to room with her. Complications ensue when Charles DaFoe (Clarence Kolb), a sanctimonious textile manufacturer whose business Fowler desperately needs, drops in for dinner and mistakes Pat for Mrs. Fowler. While Pomeroy and Fowler persuade Pat to play along, the real Mrs. Fowler returns from her trip early. How will Fowler iron out this predicament?

 

NOTE: These DVDs are Manufactured on Demand (MOD); to order, fans must visit The Warner Archive Collection, WB Shop.com, Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

 Posted by on May 14, 2019  Add comments

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