Directed by John Ford & Mervyn LeRoy
Starring Henry Fonda, James Cagney, William Powell, Jack Lemmon, Betsy Palmer, Ward Bond, Philip Carey, Nick Adams, Perry Lopez, Ken Curtis
By all accounts, Mister Roberts (1955) was a troubled production, with a feud between star Fonda and director Ford (and a illness/bender taking taking Ford off the picture). Some say Ford’s attempt to turn the play into a John Ford movie was a hindrance, but as most folks see it, the end result is just wonderful. It was a huge hit back in ’55 and is beloved today.
Warner Archive is bringing Mister Roberts to Blu-Ray, and early CinemaScope films are a real treat in high-definition. And given how splendid recent Warner Archive Blu-Rays have looked, this should be a huge upgrade. The old DVD’s commentary from Jack Lemmon (who won an Oscar for playing Ensign Pulver) is being kept, which is good news.
This one’s coming December 15, and I highly recommend it.
From an interview posted on BobDylan.com —
Bill Flanagan: You met John Wayne in 1966. How did you two hit it off?
Bob Dylan: Pretty good, actually. The Duke, I met him on a battleship in Hawaii where he was filming a movie, he and Burgess Meredith. One of my former girlfriends was in the movie, too, and she told me to come over there. She introduced me to him and he asked me to play some folk songs. I played him “Buffalo Skinners,” “Raggle Taggle Gypsy,” and I think “I’m a Rambler, I’m a Gambler.” He told me if I wanted to, I could stick around and be in the movie. He was friendly to me.
Love that poster art by Saul Bass!
Directed by Don Siegel
Starring Richard Widmark, Henry Fonda, Inger Stevens, Harry Guardino, James Whitmore, Susan Clark, Don Stroud
Madigan (1968) is yet another terrific picture from Don Siegel, from that late 60s, early 70s period when he was knocking out great movies one right after another. It came between The Killers (1964) and Coogan’s Bluff (1968), and it’s one of the best cop movies of the 60s.
Richard Widmark is Madigan, a New York cop, and he’s got 72 hours to track down a fugitive. That’s all you’re gonna get out of me. Except that it’s a great film and that Kino Lorber is bringing it to Blu-Ray later this year. I can’t wait.