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Madigan [DVD]

Richard Widmark , Henry Fonda , Don Siegel    Suitable for 12 years and over   DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
Price: 9.94
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Madigan [DVD] + The Detective [1968] [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Richard Widmark, Henry Fonda, Inger Stevens, Harry Guardino, James Whitmore
  • Directors: Don Siegel
  • Producers: Frank P. Rosenberg
  • Format: PAL
  • Subtitles: French, German, Italian, Spanish, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Hungarian, Norwegian, Polish, Swedish
  • Dubbed: French, German, Italian, Spanish, Russian
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Universal
  • DVD Release Date: 5 Dec 2005
  • Run Time: 97 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000BV5RQK
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 105,343 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

Veteran New York detective Daniel Madigan (Richard Widmark) is given a severe dressing down by Commissioner Anthony X. Russell (Henry Fonda) after allowing a dangerous killer to elude his clutches. Russell gives Madigan just 72 hours to track his man down, but the detective's task is made more difficult by his complicated personal life: his social-climbing wife, Julia (Inger Stevens) wants him to quit the force, while Madigan is also conducting an affair with a married woman.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Spike Owen TOP 500 REVIEWER
Madigan is directed by Don Siegel and adapted to screenplay by Abraham Polonsky and Howard Rodman from the novel The Commissioner written by Richard Dougherty. It stars Richard Widmark, Henry Fonda, Inger Stevens, Susan Clark, Harry Guardino and James Whitmore. Music is scored by Don Costa and cinematography by Russell Metty.

Plot finds Widmark as Detective Daniel Madigan, who along with his partner Rocco Bonaro (Guardino), loses a suspected murderer who also makes off with their guns. Causing embarrassment to Police Commissioner Anthony Russell (Fonda), who is hardly a fan of Madigan's methods, they are given 72 hours in which to locate the escapee and bring him in. But as the two men go in search of the crim, Commissioner Russell has various other problems to address, both at work and with matters of the heart. Last thing he needs is a volatile Madigan screwing things up......

Based on a book called The Commissioner, a film originally titled the same, and the most interesting story thread in the picture is that of Henry Fonda's Commissioner! Then why is the film called Madigan, who is an interesting character that really is only second fiddle in this particular Don Siegel orchestra? It is one of the odd and frustrating things about the piece, the story is complex enough without being unsure who to focus on, a shame because Widmark, Clark, Fonda and Whitmore are doing sterling work for their under pressure director (Siegel was constantly fighting with producer Frank P. Rosenberg).

The themes at play are deliciously enticing, infidelity, police corruption, family strife, friendship, loneliness and identity etc etc, threads are dangled and given thoughtful dialogue passages. But hang on! Wasn't there a murderer on the loose at the beginning of the film?
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good gritty cop thriler 20 Oct 2009
Format:VHS Tape|Verified Purchase
If you like your thrillers lean and mean then this is a film for you.
Two cops with a contrasting way of doing there job(in persuit of the same deranged killer ) an old cinema cliche but with actors of the calabar of Fonda and Widmark and belivable dilouge and what feels like an authentic script Madigan works.
Don Sigel directs in what appears to be a warm up for Dirty Harry a taut Thriller
about a hard boiled mavrick detective (Widmakr) and his unemphatic rigid boss (Fonda) who is guided as much by his displine to buracratic sytems and correct procedure as his iretent Madigan is by gut instinct and ready use of his fist's.
I woouldn't put money that Fonda and Widmark are together in a film for the first time(I'm sure they made some western together) but when these two clash on screen it really is something and it's there verbal battles which make the film a stand out for this viewer. The climax is shocking.
A good comercal action film if you like'd Bullit Copland Serpico and Dirty Harry this ought to be your ticket. An entertaining but non the less riveting little Cop opera.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A GREAT DETECTIVE STORY 15 Aug 2010
I saw Madigan in the the cinema when it was first released and found it to be a great thriller and better than your average cop thriller we had seen up to then.
A hard nosed cop Madigan (Widmark) and his partner Rocky Bonarro (Guardino) are on the trail of a psycho killer played brilliantly by Steve Inhat. Although the main plot is always there we are shown how police commissioner (Fonda) runs his police force...straight by the book, no nonsense here and no exceptions. That is until his best friend the Chief of Police (James Whitmore) finds himself in a corruption scandal. These two men have been friends all their lives, so whats the 'no nonsense' commissioner gonna do now?

Back to Dan Madigan, his marriage is falling apart, because he is so busy trying to nail his psycho killer. Dan's wife (Inger Stevens) cannot understand her husband being away so long but loves 'ol Danny in spite of it all.
The movie moves at a reasonable pace so as to keep the viewer interested, and we have a fly on the wall look at some of the other characters that eventually come Madigans way as The movie comes to an unexpected bloody end.
Apart from Harry Guardino watch out for other Don Siegel regulars such as Don Stroud and Susan Clark who featured in his later films, Coogans Bluff and the Dirty Harry series.
I really enjoyed this movie being as it was for 1968, and I believe it paved the way for future cop thrillers both on screen and T.V.
and its available through Amazon on dvd ....go get it!
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars madigan uk release 2005 10 May 2012
By Thomas
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
this is good cop film of the late 70's. I must say
the a the above reviewer says the UK release is
full frame. not so, it is widescreen and its
a good print.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.6 out of 5 stars  36 reviews
15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 'Madigan' is enjoyable police drama 28 Sep 2003
By DBW - Published on
As others have noted, "Madigan" is at its best in basic cops-and-robbers mode, when Detectives Dan Madigan (Richard Widmark) and Rocco Bennaro (Harry Guardino) are pursuing insanely dangerous gunman Barney Benesch (Steve Ihnat). Director Don Siegel knows what he's doing when it comes to movement and violence, and that's more than evident here.
A subplot involving the embattled police commissioner (Henry Fonda) and his struggle with possible graft on the part of his long-time friend and captain (James Whitmore) works reasonably well.
The commissioner's affair with a married woman (Susan Clark) isn't too much of a distraction, especially since Clark is nice to look at, as usual.
But the subplot that doesn't work is the unhappiness of Madigan's wife (Inger Stevens). Stevens does what she can to bring the woman to life, but the script defeats her, particularly in a scene following a police ball.
Production values are very high, as 1968 New York emerges vividly in the location shooting. Don Costa's score deserves to be released on CD - it's a very memorable and exciting one, especially the main title and the build-up to the climax.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gritty 60's cop movie 26 Nov 2007
By F. J. Harvey - Published on
This actionful New York set cops and robbers movie was co-scripted by the once blacklisted leftist writer Abraham Polonsky and this may ,together with the anti-establishmant modes of thinking current at the time of its making ,be responsible for its strongly critical stance on police corruption and morality .
Madigan (Richard Widmark)and his partner Bonaro (Harry Guardino)go to arrest a hoodlum wanted for murder ,one Benech(Steve Inhat).They find him in bed with a woman and using the fact that they are distracted by this he steals Madigan's gun and makes his getaway.Police Commissioner Russell (Henry Fonda) givbes them 72 hours to nail him and restore the prestige the department has lost by the fiasco
Russell has other weighty matters on his mind .He is having an affair with a married woman (Susan Clark).A prominent black minister (Raymond St Jacques) is hassling him over the death of the minister's son ,an "activist"who has been beaten by racist cops.Plus ,he is on the take from local brothel owners to ensure their businesses are undisturbed by the police .
Madigan also has problems outside his work life namely his domestic situation .His socialite wife (Inger Stevens)is pressurising him to leave the force and take up more remunerataive work .The crisis worsens when Benech uses Madigan's gun to kill two people .

Don Siegal directs splendidly ,in a semi-documentary style ,and this contributes to a realistic and gritty movie with an authentic feel to its depiction of police work on the streets of (mainly Spanish )Manhattan.The acting is uniformally excellent with Richard Widmark especially outstanding ,
There is a technical problem which some may find impairs enjoyment slightly -the Techniscope process used by Universal gives a certain grainy quality to night scenes but in some ways this is appropriate to the ambience of the movie

This is a very good movie if a tad heavy on the leftist propaganda at times
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GOLD STANDARD FOR ITS TIME 7 May 2004
By Gregory Saffady - Published on
Richard Dougherty's THE COMMISSIONER, upon which MADIGAN, is based was one of the first works of fiction to accurately portray cops problems away from the station house. MADIGAN, one of the best films of 1968, is true to that part of the book and Don Siegel implants his own brand of genius on the rest. MADIGAN shows a not too distant era when there were blood-and-guts hat wearing detectives who worked their own angles to solve their cases. The portrayls by Widmark and Guardino are lasting and solid to the core. For it's time, MADIGAN was a gold standard in police procedurals. The NYC landscape bolstered by the Don Costa soundtrack is stunning.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dual Character Study of Two Cops with Different Ideals and Responsibilities. 17 July 2009
By mirasreviews - Published on
"Madigan" is one of the most critically acclaimed of director Don Siegel's films, low-key and introverted by the standards of Siegel's action oeuvre. Dan Madigan (Richard Widmark) is a fine New York cop who likes to show off and freely admits to enjoying the occasional perk of the job. Police Commissioner Tony Russell (Henry Fonda) doesn't like Madigan's type. Russell is a real straight arrow, insisting that his officers be scrupulous in their own respect for the law. Madigan and his partner Rocco Bonaro (Harry Guardino) burst into the apartment of Barney Benesch (Steve Ihnat), a hood they want to take in for questioning. Benesch gets the upper hand and flees. The Commissioner puts the cops under pressure to capture Benesch before the weekend is out, while he copes with other potentially embarrassing problems in the department.

"Madigan" is based on the book "The Commissioner" by Richard Dougherty, but the focus has been shifted from the Commissioner to Madigan, as the titles imply. The action takes place over the course of 3 days, cutting back and forth between Madigan and Bonaro's efforts to track down Benesch and the Commissioner under similar pressure to deal with politically volatile issues of alleged racism and possible corruption on the part of his old friend, Chief Inspector Charlie Kane (James Whitmore). The film is talky. It's a dual character study, much of the characters being revealed in conversation. Madigan and the Commissioner are men of very different temperament, and they each have their pressures and foibles to deal with. We essentially observe how these men act under pressure. It's an unusual formula, but two great leading actors make it well worth watching.

The DVD (Universal 1999): Bonus features are a theatrical trailer (2 1/2 min), cast and filmmaker bios and selective filmographies (text), and Product Notes (text) that include comments on the conflict between director Don Siegel and producer Frank Rosenberg and some of Widmark's memories about the production. Captioning is available in English, subtitles in Spanish. Dubbing available in French.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Cops in Hats 21 May 2008
By EddieLove - Published on
The second Don Siegel movie from 1968 about a cop in NYC hunting the killer who stole his gun. (Paging Dr. Freud.) Great NYC location work is mixed with some dreay backlot stuff in this otherwise good policer. We get a little too much of the cops' homelives, but there's a hard-hitting climax. (Plus the last line in the picture provides ironic resonance to the city's racial issues with law enforcement that haven't gone away since the picture's release. ) Nice brassy Don Costa score.
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