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My Brothers Keeper [DVD]


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Product details

  • Actors: Jack Warner, George Cole, Jane Hylton, David Tomlinson, Bill Owen
  • Directors: Alfred Roome
  • Format: Dolby, PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Odeon Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 8 Aug 2011
  • Run Time: 83 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00576XCZ2
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 105,320 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

The first ever DVD release of this classic British crime. George Martin (Jack Warner) and Willie Stannard (George Cole) are handcuffed together and on their way to a West Country jail when they escape and go on the run. Martin is a hardened, dangerous criminal, but Stannard is a simple-minded youth who claims he is innocent of the crime for which he is awaiting trial. As they go on the run handcuffed together Martin steals a corporal s uniform and pretends that Stannard is a deserter in his charge. Desperate to unshackle himself from the simple-minded youth, Martin finds a hacksaw in a deserted cottage but they are surprised by a huntsman. In the ensuing struggle Martin murders the huntsman and the search for escaped prisoners becomes a manhunt for a murderer...Extra Features include Best of British Trailers, Stills Gallery and Booklet Notes

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Matthew Mercy on 19 Aug 2011
Format: DVD
An escaped-convicts-on-the-run thriller from Gainsborough Pictures, and once thought to be a lost film, My Brother's Keeper (1948) is a tense, hard-edged chase movie in which the grizzled Jack Warner and a very young George Cole play two badly-matched prisoners, handcuffed together and fleeing from the police...
Directed by Alfred Roome (whose name is probably known today only as that of the editor of around a dozen Carry On films), this movie is most notable for Warner's reverse casting as the heartless villain of the piece; here, he shows a range that his signature role of P.C. George Dixon (along with the many other friendly coppers he essayed in movies of the period) would never let him display, playing a vicious man plagued by his inner demons as he tries to stay one step ahead of the forces of law and order. With Warner's wily, uncaring old hand manipulating Cole's simple-minded teenager every step of the way, the film isn't a very pleasant or upbeat experience (despite several scenes of comic relief featuring David Tomlinson's pursuing newspaper man), and its desperate atmosphere ensures that it remains compelling as it heads towards its upsetting, downbeat climax. With a supporting cast that includes many familiar faces from British cinema (including Wilfrid Hyde-White, Brenda Bruce, Susan Shaw, Bill Owen, Valentine Dyall, and Maurice Denham), and a pair of excellent performances from Jane Hylton and Beatrice Varley as the two very different women in Warner's life, the film also ends with a poignant quotation from Henry Hassett Browne that sums up the entire movie in a few words. An excellent film, well worth picking up on DVD.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By William Taylor on 12 Aug 2011
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Some years ago this film was shown on BBC2 as part of a series called "Lost and Found", highlighting obscure British movies of the 30's and 40's thought lost and subsequently re-discovered.

Had it been lost forever it would have been a shame, because "My Brother's Keeper" is an exciting man (or men) on the run thriller, with as usual a host of welcome familiar faces in the cast.

Jack Warner, cast completely against type, brings the unsympathetic, selfish and callous George Martin convincingly to life. It's always hard to accept Jack as the bad guy because his public memory is so engrained as PC George Dixon in "The Blue Lamp" and to a lesser degree as the kindly father of the Huggett series. As his fellow escapee, a young George Cole presents a pathetic figure as a naive and simple young man falsely accused of rape, whose trust and dependence on his fellow escapee is cruelly let down.

The interesting cast includes David Tomlinson as a reporter on his honeymoon drawn into investigating the escape, with Garry Marsh and Wilfred Hyde White as fellow journalists. Character actress Beatrice Varley, a familiar face from 1940's films playing spinsters, char ladies and mothers creates a moving cameo as Jack Warner's supportive wife, who tries to help her husband in spite of everything. It was also good to see Susan Shaw, Brenda Bruce, Jane Hylton and Yvonne Owen in small roles.

Picture quality is fine on the DVD, but the sound is quite scratchy, but this maybe due to the rarity of the film. As with all this series its arrival to DVD is extremely welcome. Britain's film heritage is much more than a handful of well known titles and this series is going a long way to reviving the memory of these neglected classics.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Tom Owen on 8 Dec 2011
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Jack Warner plays the lead in what I imagine is his only bad guy role. He looked a bit too old and out of shape for some of the chase sequences but he's a big man who looked genuinely threatening in the more confrontational scenes - George Cole provided good support as the innocent abroad caught up in the escape.

If you are a steam train enthusiast, there's some nice period scenery showing some of the local Branch railway lines and stations. Jack Warner recalled in his memoirs his concerns about one scene in particular where he was required to run across a line just before a train passes - looked a bit too close for comfort to me. They certainly didn't mollycoddle their stars in those days.

The sub-plot with David Tomlinson and his honeymoon bride seemed a bit contrived and out of place but otherwise the story was well paced and interesting.

Enjoyed the chance to see a film which was all but forgotten. Great to see some of these old films released on DVD for the first time.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I bought this dvd because I have a love of pre 1970's films, especially black & white, and this one came up to all my expectations. Having seen Jack Warner in Dixon of Dock Green and Meet the Huggets it was quite refreshing to see him in a darker and quite violent part which he performs well. In all these old films it is part of the fun spotting actors who made it big later, there a quite a lot in this one, and wondering what happened to the others. All together I thought it a very good buy
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By clucas on 7 Dec 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Nice nostalgic film with railway shots worth having.
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