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Criterion Collection: Naked City [DVD] [1948] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

Barry Fitzgerald , Howard Duff , Jules Dassin    DVD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
Price: 18.09
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Region 1 encoding (requires a North American or multi-region DVD player and NTSC compatible TV. More about DVD formats.)

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Frequently Bought Together

Criterion Collection: Naked City [DVD] [1948] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] + While the City Sleeps (1956) [DVD]
Price For Both: 26.29

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  • While the City Sleeps (1956) [DVD] 8.20

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Product details

  • Actors: Barry Fitzgerald, Howard Duff, Dorothy Hart, Don Taylor, Frank Conroy
  • Directors: Jules Dassin
  • Writers: Albert Maltz, Malvin Wald
  • Producers: Jules Buck, Mark Hellinger
  • Format: Black & White, DVD-Video, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Unrated (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: Criterion
  • DVD Release Date: 20 Mar 2007
  • Run Time: 96 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000M2E3GI
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 69,340 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
3.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
By C. O. DeRiemer HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
"There are eight million stories in the naked city. This has been one of them." That's the end of the movie, and it's a famous line. The start of the movie shows people going about their lives in New York City. Waking up, catching the subways, working, going home. And, for one young woman late at night shown in her dark apartment through window blinds, being murdered.

This is a gritty police procedural with New York City as the star. It's right after the end of WWII, it's summer and it's hot. Trucks still deliver blocks of ice, and a cold draft root beer costs five cents. Jean Dexter was a good time girl who wanted to be rich. She could be very friendly with men who had money. She's found in her overflowing bath tub, but she also had been chloroformed. Detective Lt. Dan Muldoon (Barry Fitzgerald) is assigned to the case. To help him he gets Jimmy Halloran (Don Taylor), a young cop new to the homicide squad. Their painstaking, methodical search for evidence leads them all over the city. A picture of a clever jewel robbery ring aimed at society figures takes shape, and eventually leads to a brutal member of the gang who decided he wanted a bigger cut. The last ten minutes of the film is a classic chase scene through the streets of Brooklyn and up onto the Williamsburg Bridge.

What makes this movie so special is that it was entirely shot on location, on the streets, in the tenement backyards, in real offices and apartments, in the New York morgue and on top of the Williamsburg Bridge towers. You can see people in the background turn and look startled as the actors chase past them, or bump into an actor in a crowd scene and hurry on. Mark Hellinger was a famous New York columnist who turned movie producer. This was his last film before he died.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
By Victor HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This really is a fascinating film, on many levels. It is a fictional murder mystery, but filmed in an almost documentary style showing the workings of a police investigation in detail and the City of New York as it had never been seen on celluloid before.

The intended aim of the film is to make the city the star, and it works. Filmed in as many real locations as possible (the actual city morgue was a particularly good touch) with the minimum of staged sets there is a feeling of reality. The action moves from location to location, almost always with the camera focused on the environment, crowds and buildings rather than the protagonists. You get an intimate view of the investigation, but a feeling that it is just a small part in the workings of a great metropolis.

The mystery itself is well put together and interesting. The detail of the police investigation as they wind towards the truth is excellent. Not afraid to show it as it really is with lots of boring legwork and asking questions before any kind of clear picture emerges, this is an almost verite approach.

Filmed in 1948 this is a film that works well on several levels - the depiction of the city, the crime thriller, the character study and the detailed police procedural. It is a fascinating document of the times and well worth a watch by any fans of noir cinema and anyone who enjoys well made and interesting films that are a bit different.

This 2009 Arrow release is OK. The film has not been restored, but in general it is a good transfer with a reasonably clean and crisp picture. There are the occasional scratches and jumps, but these do not detract too much from the viewing pleasure. The sound is generally OK, except for the very start of the movie where the voice over gets a little lost in the back ground noise.

A decent release of this classic film.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stylish noir from master Jules Dassin 10 July 2009
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Well, I've been waiting for this item for some time now, as it hasn't been issued yet in Europe. This is probably the first time it appears in Europe.

This movie should be a great experience from noir master Jules Dassin. It is the 1st movie made after Brute Force (1947), a prison noirish drama, and it is usually ranked as his 2nd masterpiece. Together with Thieves' Highway(1949), Night and the city (1950) and Riffifi (1955) if forms the core of the director's moviemaking.

For the people that are not familliar with Dassin's work let me tell you a brief history of his work: he started in this business as assistant director to the biggest director ever, Alfred Hitchcock, at the beginning of the 40's. His first featurette was Reunion in France (1942) starring John Wayne and Joan Crawford a spy noirish war movie. He won his place in the cinematography with the five movies I've mentioned above. After completing Night and the City in 1950 he was thrown out of the US with the charge of being a communist. After this moment, he directed in France, probably, in my opinion the best film noir ever, Riffifi, with mostly non-professionals.

This is one of his masterful works which should not be missed by any movie lover. I haven't seen this yet as it was available only in the US, so I am waiting just as anxious as everybody else.

***Update 19/10/2009 Guys you should definitely buy this item if you are a fan of classic film noir. This together with the mentioned above titles is among the best, cafty, noir masterpiece. Jules Dassin makes probably the best film noir director ever. Out of five amazing movies two were produced in the US, one in the UK and one in France. Naked City is even if the style does not allow it that much, a very funny movie, as well.
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