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The Lost Weekend [Masters of Cinema] (Blu-ray) [1945]

Ray Milland , Jane Wyman , Billy Wilder    Parental Guidance   Blu-ray
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
Price: 8.08 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

The Lost Weekend [Masters of Cinema] (Blu-ray) [1945] + Double Indemnity [Masters of Cinema] (Blu-ray) [1944] + Lifeboat [Masters of Cinema] (Ltd Edition Dual Format Steelbook) [Blu-ray] [1944]
Price For All Three: 29.59

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Product details

  • Actors: Ray Milland, Jane Wyman
  • Directors: Billy Wilder
  • Format: Widescreen
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region B/2 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Eureka Entertainment Ltd
  • DVD Release Date: 25 Jun 2012
  • Run Time: 102 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B007196V1U
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 11,063 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



"I'm not a drinker--I'm a drunk." These words, and the serious message behind them, were still potent enough in 1945 to shock audiences flocking to The Lost Weekend. The speaker is Don Birnam (Ray Milland), a handsome, talented, articulate alcoholic. The writing team of producer Charles Brackett and director Billy Wilder pull no punches in their depiction of Birnam's massive weekend bender, a tailspin that finds him reeling from his favorite watering hole to Bellevue Hospital. Location shooting in New York helps the street-level atmosphere, especially a sequence in which Birnam, a budding writer, tries to hock his typewriter for booze money. He desperately staggers past shuttered storefronts--it's Yom Kippur, and the pawnshops are closed. Milland, previously known as a lightweight leading man (he'd starred in Wilder's hilarious The Major and the Minor three years earlier), burrows convincingly under the skin of the character, whether waxing poetic about the escape of drinking or screaming his lungs out in the D.T.'s sequence. Wilder, having just made the ultra-noir Double Indemnity, brought a new kind of frankness and darkness to Hollywood's treatment of a social problem. At first the film may have seemed too bold; Paramount Pictures nearly killed the release of the picture after it tested poorly with preview audiences. But once in release, The Lost Weekend became a substantial hit, and won four Oscars: for picture, director, screenplay, and actor. --Robert Horton

Product Description

United Kingdom released, Blu-Ray/Region B DVD: LANGUAGES: English ( Dolby Digital 2.0 ), English ( Dolby DTS-HD Master Audio ), English ( Subtitles ), SPECIAL FEATURES: Black & White, Booklet, Interactive Menu, Remastered, Scene Access, Trailer(s), SYNOPSIS: Directed by Billy Wilder (Double Indemnity, Sunset Boulevard, Some Like It Hot), this gut-wrenching adaptation of Charles Jackson's The Lost Weekend horrified its studio, was rejected by test audiences, and was lobbied by temperance groups, yet went on to huge success and became the awards sensation of its year. Ray Milland stars as Don Birnam, a New York author struggling with years of alcoholism and writer's block. Trying to keep him on the path to rehabilitation are his straight-laced brother Wick (Philip Terry) and devoted long-time girlfriend Helen (Jane Wyman). When Don absconds from a country excursion, he embarks on a four-day binge, spiralling towards rock bottom. SCREENED/AWARDED AT: Cannes Film Festival, Golden Globes, Oscar Academy Awards, ...The Lost Weekend (Blu-Ray)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Ray Milland delivers his finest performance in this 1945 drama. Even over 60 years later, it remains believable, tense and hard-hitting. A must for all Jane Wyman fans, too.
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43 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gritty and great 27 April 2006
By Henry Ireton VINE VOICE
This should be in everyone's list of the greatest films ever made. It profiles the slow descent of an alcoholic into an internal hell- it doesn't show the final moments of such a descent but lets us and him see where the story might end. It offers some hope but not much. Its wonderful particularly because of its insight into the psychology of its characters. The main character, Don, knows he is an alcoholic, understands it is a problem but can't get away from the thrill of it, he wants to but can't break out of it. His mornings and Sundays are consumed by guilt, the rest of the time he cadges, steals and begs money for drinks from others. His brother and girlfriend, his barman and a local whore stand by watching his descent into torture, trying to persuade him that there is something worth saving there. You can see especially in his brother and girlfriend's eyes the expression of mingled incomprehension and love that close friends feel for those going through these experiences- incomprehension that somebody like Don with so much to live for could think they have nothing and love for Don. In a strange way by the end of the film, we who begin the film understanding his point of view- the endless quest for a drink- understand theirs too and Wilder takes us to a place that no other film about addiction has ever taken me where we sympathise with the addicted victim and yet still more with those he damages by his addiction. This is a great film- if you haven't seen it watch it now.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masters of Cinema Blu-ray # 45: The Lost Weekend 21 Jun 2012
'The Lost Weekend' is a film by Billy Wilder, released in 1945, and covers a 4-day period in the life of Don Birnham (played by Ray Milland in a career-best performance). Birnham is an alcoholic, and the film shows how he continues to sink to new lows in ever more desperate attempts to get his hands of a bottle of alcohol. If the film were released today, its subject matter would likely draw no attention. But in 1945, alcoholism (or dipsomania as it was known medically) was considered a disease, not the social condition it is now understood to be. So 'The Lost Weekend' gave cinema audiences their first real sympathetic glimpse at the underlying condition. Much of the film is shocking, and the famous hallucination scene is both masterly directed and acted. Other characters aside from Birnham are made three-dimensional, from his long-suffering girlfriend, Helen, to Bim, the cynical, worldly-wise nurse who deals with alcoholics every day. This is rightly considered one of the finest American films on the 1940s, and it really does deserve all the praise it's received, and continues to receive.

The Blu-ray itself is another product of the Masters of Cinema series' partnership with Universal, and once again this is a fantastic release. The 1080p black-and-white image is very strong, with lots of detail visible in close ups of jackets etc., and there is a fine, though not intrusive, level of film grain noticeable throughout. Damage, apart from some noticeable dirt in the very first scene, is minimal, and overall this is a very strong transfer, with no signs of edge-enhancement or DNR. The mono DTS-HD Master Audio is also clear, and free from any hiss or noise that I could detect. The film is locked to Region B, and there are optional English subtitles on the film.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brill Insight 7 Jun 2009
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
If you want an movie insight in to the condition of alcoholism,then they don't come much better than this. May seem a little dated, but the message is still strong.
Other recommendations from me would be 'days of wine and roses' & 'leaving las vegas'
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT 21 April 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
A superb portrayal of alcoholism, I would suggest anyone with a drinking problem, or who knows someone with a drinking problem, watches this, it clearly shows that alcoholism in not about self will, that there is a craving which drives people to want and have to have more despite the awful consequences.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Wilder 30 Jan 2013
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
One of the lesser known films of Billy Wilder, but still a classic. It has the look of a Wilder film, but is missing the trademark humour, which is appropriate given the subject matter (Alcoholism).
If you haven't seen it, the film is a must see.
If you have seen, you know it is worth seeing again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Delirium is a disease that only comes at night. 23 Mar 2013
By Spike Owen TOP 500 REVIEWER
Don Birnham is not a drinker, he is in fact a drunk, he is left alone for the weekend by those who love him under the proviso that he gets stuck into his writing, thus the hope is that he stays away from the booze that is killing his life and the loving foundation that his life is built on.

Billy Wilder directs this with brilliant hands, he pulls his first masterstroke by casting Ray Milland in the lead role of Don Birnham, at the time Milland was better known for light and airy roles, so for audiences of the time it was quite something to see someone so normally affable descend into a real dark shadow of their perceived persona. It was a formula that Blake Edwards would repeat some 17 years later with Days Of Wine And Roses, there, comedy great Jack Lemmon would wow the viewers with his own descent into alcoholic hell.

It's no different here in 1945, Milland (and Wilder) drag us into an airy, almost jaunty first reel, and the foundation is set here for us to firmly stand by Don as he spirals thru a series of nightmares that is acted with genuine brilliance from the leading man. The journey has us rapidly trying to hock a typewriter if only we could just find a pawnbrokers open, we will beg in touchingly heart breaking fashion for a drink from the trusted barkeep, we will find ourselves in a dry out ward where the night terrors take over, we will be terrified by the delirium as sobriety threatens to unhinge this vile addiction....
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Peerless screenwriting
They say to write a great screenplay, the first shot tells the story. As we swoop down on a New York apartment, we see a bottle suspended on a piece of string from a window sill... Read more
Published 24 days ago by William Cohen
5.0 out of 5 stars That’s The Nice Young Man Who Drinks... whisper two elderly 'respectable’ ladies as they pass Ray Milland’s aspiring author and alcoholic Don Birnam in the street in this ground-breaking 1945 Billy Wilder film. Read more
Published 25 days ago by Keith M
5.0 out of 5 stars this is a classic
wow what a great movie, im a fan of cinema and will give most films a chance...the blu-ray edition is crisp considering the age of it. Read more
Published 1 month ago by CAL EL
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic viewing.
I purchased this movie for my father who is a big Ray Milland fan.The service from Amazon is really good.
Published 1 month ago by Patricia Mc Williams
5.0 out of 5 stars Very well made film for this subject
As a person that has experienced problems 1st hand as in the subject of this film. I think that this is the best film I have seen on this subject and I suggest any people that have... Read more
Published 2 months ago by John Wilde
5.0 out of 5 stars Prompt delivery and in good condition
Prompt delivery and in good condition, which after all are the main requirements of a customer. Good film too. Happy. Good to see the old films being restored
Published 4 months ago by John Burke

after seeing the movie on tv i decided to buy the special edition on blue ray

but very disappointed with Amazon and delivery problem. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Eftychios Koniotis
5.0 out of 5 stars The Lost Weekend blu-ray
This film looks and sounds great on blu-ray and there are optional english subtitles.the radio adaptation is a nice extra and the three part interview with Billy Wilder from 1992... Read more
Published 7 months ago by gerrard
4.0 out of 5 stars must clean the disk first
Very good apart from little 2 second interruption of film, however this could be because the disk was not clean properly?
Published 11 months ago by helen marshall
2.0 out of 5 stars The Lost Weekend
If you're a depressive leave this one alone. Milland can be very good (sometimes) but this is a total no - no
Published 14 months ago by Ray
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