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Crossfire [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

Robert Young , Robert Mitchum , Edward Dmytryk    DVD
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
Price: 17.54
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Product details

  • Actors: Robert Young, Robert Mitchum, Robert Ryan, Gloria Grahame, Paul Kelly
  • Directors: Edward Dmytryk
  • Writers: John Paxton, Richard Brooks
  • Producers: Adrian Scott
  • Format: Black & White, Closed-captioned, DVD-Video, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • 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: Turner Home Ent
  • DVD Release Date: 5 July 2005
  • Run Time: 86 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00097DY0M
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 124,121 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

From Amazon.co.uk

Crossfire was nominated for the 1947 Best Picture Oscar won by Gentleman's Agreement. Gentlemen may propose, if not agree, that Crossfire was better. Like its upscale rival, the film noir raises the specter of anti-Semitism in America: just after World War II, an affable Jew (Sam Levene) is beaten to death by one of several GIs out "crawling." Solving the crime takes all night, but for the audience the killer's identity is scarcely in doubt; Robert Ryan's chilling study in psychopathic bigotry scored him his lone Oscar nomination. He's nearly matched in creepiness by Paul Kelly as an odd nightbird married to sultry Gloria Grahame. Two other worthy Roberts--Young and Mitchum--respectively play the police detective and the Army sergeant wondering which of his guys is a murderer. Incidentally, the hot button in the Richard Brooks novel was not anti-Semitism but homophobia--a sweaty subtext in Edward Dmytryk's film. --Richard T. Jameson

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
By C. O. DeRiemer HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
Perhaps the first of the social injustice movies Hollywood began turning out in the late Forties, Crossfire is one of the few in my opinion which still hold up. That's because the social message, against hate in general and anti-Semitism in particular, doesn't become too preachy and get in the way of the story. Unlike Gentleman's Agreement (anti-Semitism), Boomerang (legal and class injustice), Pinky (racial prejudice) and others, Crossfire tells a taut story first, in this case about a murder, and features some first-rate acting, especially from Robert Ryan.

The murder mystery is straightforward and there's little doubt about who the killer is. We know a man named Samuels (Sam Levene) has been beaten to death. We know the suspect, Corporal Arthur Mitchell (George Cooper) is one of four recently discharged soldiers who met him in a bar. We know one of the four is a big, edgy guy, Sergeant Montgomery (Robert Ryan), who laughs too much and likes to verbally poke at people he thinks are weak. The body is discovered, evidence points to Mitchell as the killer and police Captain Finlay (Robert Young) goes to work. One of Mitchell's buddies, Sergeant Peter Keeley (Robert Mitchum) doesn't think Mitchell could be a killer. In a cautious way he starts working with Finlay to establish an alibi for Mitchell, and then to concentrate on Montgomery. One of the biggest issues is what could Montgomery's motivation be. It turns out Montgomery doesn't like civilians, doesn't like "hillbillies," and hates Jews. He's a bigot. When Montgomery complains about "those kinds of guys", Finlay asks, "What kind of guys?"
"You know the kind." Montgomery says. "Played it safe during the war, keepin' themselves in civvies, nice apartments, swell dames...you know the kind."
"I'm not sure that I do.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Hate is like a loaded gun." 20 Jun 2007
By Trevor Willsmer HALL OF FAME TOP 100 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
Crossfire remains one of the best Hollywood message movies because, unlike the admirably intentioned Gentleman's Agreement, which it beat to theatres by a few months, it chooses to send its message via the form an excellent noir thriller rather than have an outraged star constantly saying "It's because I'm Jewish, isn't it?" It's much easier to get the message that hate is like a loaded gun across when the dead bodies are actual rather than metaphorical. Novelist Richard Brooks disowned the film over the shift from a homophobic murder to an anti-Semitic one, but it's interesting to note that while the victim is killed primarily because he is Jewish, there's little doubt in Sam Levene's performance that the character is in fact also gay - not a mincing caricature, but there's definitely a two lost souls aspect to his scenes with George Cooper's confused soldier. There's not much of a mystery to who the murderer is: even though the killing is carried out in classic noir shadows, the body language of the killer is instantly recognisable, but then the film has its characters drift to the same conclusion before the halfway point: the tension comes from proving it and saving the fall guy.

There's an element of Ealing Films to the gang of soldiers teaming together to get their buddy out of a fix (you could almost see that aspect as a blueprint for Hue and Cry), but the atmosphere is pure RKO noir.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Film Noir Classic 8 Feb 2007
By E. A. Redfearn TOP 1000 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:DVD
One of the classic Film Noir from the late 1940s. A Jew is beaten to death in a New York Hotel and Detective Robert Young suspects three soldiers of the murder.

Shot entirely at night, the film oozes style, tension and atmosphere, enhanced with the use of camera techniques by director Edward Dmytrek. Although the film is rather talkie, it does manage to hold the viewers attention throughout. It was also the first film to explore the implications of Racial Bigotry.

Superbly cast with Robert Young, Robert Mitchum, Robert Ryan and the lovely Gloris Grahame film makers and actors in those days showed what could be achieved on low budgets.

Much of the picture as I have said, is rather dark but clear, although print does show its age in certain scenes. Sound is mono, but alright on a Home Cinema System switched to Normal Stereo Channels.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dangerous, heady stuff 28 April 2009
Format:DVD
Filmed in 1946, released in 1947, this is one of the first Films Noirs to get to grips with urgent contemporary issues; famously the issue of racism but also the situation of soldiers discharged from the army and having no role and no future, of no-hope girls who would have worked in munitions and other factories in the war, but now have no option but the Dance Hall.

There is no doubt that this is a proper film noir, from the urgent opening, a beating-up (to death) filmed off-kilter in shadow, the table lamp in the foreground, everything else off-frame. From then on, the hunt for the killer of the Jewish Samuels unfolds at a comparatively leisurely, reflective pace, but exposing the corruption and emptiness of everyone's lives on the way, in a script that crackles with wit and glows with good sense (based on a novel by Richard Brooks, who went on to be a pretty good director himself). One notable aspect of the script is its silences; pauses for reflection, but also pauses to see which way the cat will jump. The final sting, filmed against the staircase (how Noir loves its staircases!), is most effective.

Edward Dmytryk was one of the Hollywood Ten, left-wing writers and directors whose careers were blighted by Joseph McCarthy's House of Unamerican Activities Committee and its communist witch-hunt. Shortly after this film he went to prison for several months rather than grass on fellow-leftists. Later he changed his mind, and his friends never forgave him; but who can say they would be any braver than he was?

Dmytryk's left leanings are at the core of the movie, and racism is not only the theme, but the key to solving the murder: who would kill someone they didn't know?
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Dmytryk’s Thoughtful (And Brilliant) Noir
The fact that this 1947 film was designated by RKO Head of Production, Dore Schary, as B-movie material (20 day shoot and $250K budget) – something that director Edward Dmytryk was... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Keith M
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Robert Mitchum, solid performance
Another classic Robert Mitchum with strong performances from Robert Ryan, Robert Young.
Thoroughly enjoyed the movie. A good story, a film that I enjoy watching over again.
Published 1 month ago by Roy Hilton
4.0 out of 5 stars The Three Bobs
It's a very earnest film and there is a passage near the end where it does get to the edge of preachiness. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Mario
1.0 out of 5 stars Great movie, lousy print (PAL)
I already had a NTSC pirate copy of "Crossfire", but I think this is a great movie, so I decided to purchase the PAL edition, by Universal pictures. Read more
Published 9 months ago by bugzzy
2.0 out of 5 stars Full marks for the film but . . .
I have to agree with your two star reviewer on this production. Both visual and sound quality present a challenge to one's concentration. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Wilberfalse
2.0 out of 5 stars Excellent film but a terrible print
I can only give this DVD two stars, the film itself is well crafted, well acted, and still holds relevance in its message. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Robin
4.0 out of 5 stars Cradle Of Fear.
A man by the name of Joseph Samuels is found brutally murdered in his apartment. It would appear that Samuels was visited by a group of drunken soldiers the previous evening, and... Read more
Published on 12 Feb 2012 by Spike Owen
5.0 out of 5 stars Crossfire: The Different Noir
Crossfire, the 1947 Film Noir drama directed by Edward Dmytryk, is a very unique, and utterly satisfying, movie that was nominated for five Academy Awards. Read more
Published on 16 Mar 2011 by Legendary Matt
4.0 out of 5 stars Pure evil
Montgomery (Robert Ryan), Floyd (Steve Brodie) and Mitchell (George Cooper) are 3 soldiers who go drinking together and end up in a bar where they meet Samuels (Sam Levene). Read more
Published on 18 Jan 2011 by Alex da Silva
5.0 out of 5 stars "Crossfire (1947) ... Edward Dmytryk (Director) ... RKO Radio Pictures...
RKO Radio Pictures presents "CROSSFIRE" (22 July 1947) (86 min/B&W) (Fully Restored/Dolby Digitally Remastered) -- Edward Dmytryk's shadowy noir deals with a righteous homicide cop... Read more
Published on 4 Jan 2011 by J. Lovins
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