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This page contains the movie reviews of classic films recently released on DVD. As well as links to reviews posted on my blog "24 frames per second."


The Ester Williams Collection Vol.2
The Thin Man Collection

24 Frames Per Second

Million Dollar Mermaid (1952)
Gandhi (1982)
Bullitt (1968)
The Invisible Man (1933)
25 Comedies from the Past 25 Years
The Freshman (1925)
Sweet Movie (1974)
Sleeping Beauty (1959)

Esther Williams vol.2

Esther Williams

The Esther Williams Collection Vol.2

This collection contains 6 classic Esther Williams films starting with "Thrill of a Romance" from 1945, and ending with the 1953 film "Easy to Love".

Released at the beginning of October, 2009, this 6 disc set is the second such collection of Esther Williams films released. Being one of the most popular actresses of the 40's, Warners did not have to dig too deep to create another enjoyable collections of movies. For those who don't know, Esther Williams was a teenage swimming champion who would have taken part in the 1940 Olympic games if they hadn't been canceled due to the start of World War II. She was spotted by an MGM talent scout while working at the San Francisco World's Fair and made her film debut opposite Mickey Rooney in 1942's "Andy Hardy's Double Life." MGM would soon create a special sub-genre for her called "aqua musicals" showcasing her swimming talents. This can be seen beautifully in films such as Million Dollar Mermaid. This 1952 spectacle costars Victor Mature and features surrealist water and smoke musical numbers choreographed by the great Busby Berkeley. Swimmers come flying in on trapeze through technicolor smoke only to swan dive in unison to the water below. The whole number is wonderful. This set also includesThrill of a Romance (45), Fiesta (47), This Time for Keeps (47), Pagan Love Song (50), and Easy to Love (53). I've watch 3 of the 6 discs so far, and there are a few technical issues. In all 3 films there were occasional shots out of focus. Not so many that it's problematic, but they are noticeable. With the continued improvement of home theater systems, this is somewhat disappointing. Each disc also contains trailers, shorts and classic cartoons from the time period, which I always enjoy on disc sets like this. The set is a nice collection of one of the most unusual stars from Hollywood's golden age, and technical issues aside, I would recommend to those who love the classic Hollywood musical.

To see a more extensive review of "Million Dollar Mermaid" visit my film blog.

The Thin Man Box

The Thin Man

The Thin Man Collection

This collection contains the classic 1934 film "The Thin Man", the five sequels in the series and a bonus documentary disc.

William Powell and Myrna Loy star as Nick and Nora Charles, a fun and loving married couple who seem to get involved with investigating murders. Nick, is a former police detective who is more content with a stiff drink, walking their dog, Asta, and living off his wife's money. Nora, who can match her husband's drinking and wise-cracking, is the thrill-seeker and seems to get her husband involved in investigating crimes without him intending it. The Thin Man is taken from Dashiell Hammett's novel of the same name, and revolves around the quest for a "thin man" who killed an inventor. Directed by W.S. ("One Take Woody") Van Dyke, who was asked to finish the picture in 3 weeks, shot it in just 12 days, and it has an improvisational feel, with characters moving freely in and out of frame. The wonderful chemistry of Powell and Loy, and the combination of screwball comedy, romance and mystery, was like nothing audiences had seen before and would influence film and T.V. (the 80's "Moonlighting"). The film would be nominated for 4 Oscars; Best Picture, Screenplay, Director and Actor, and go on to spawn five sequels, all of which are contained in this collection. After the Thin Man (36), Another Thin Man(39), Shadow of the Thin Man(41), The Thin Man Goes Home(44), and Song of the Thin Man(47). The final disc Alias Nick and Nora contains 2 documentaries, one for Powell and Loy each. The set is a wonderful collection of one of the greatest screen couples of all time.

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