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High Sierra [DVD] [1941] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

4.5 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Dispatched from and sold by M and N Media US.
£57.69 Only 1 left in stock - order soon. Dispatched from and sold by M and N Media US.

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Product details

  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000B1OGA
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 305,554 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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Product description

From Amazon.co.uk

This 1941 melodrama is memorable both for its strong central performances and their intimations of how the previous decade's crime dramas would evolve into film noir--no accident, given the solid direction of veteran Raoul Walsh and the hand of screenwriter John Huston, who teamed with the author of its novelistic source, WR Burnett (Little Caesar). In the central character of Roy "Mad Dog" Earle, a fictional peer to John Dillinger, Humphrey Bogart finds a defining role that anticipates the underlying fatalism and moral ambiguity visible in the career-making roles soon to follow, including Sam Spade in Huston's directorial debut, The Maltese Falcon (1941).

Earle suggests a prescient variation on the enraged sociopaths that were fixtures of the gangster melodramas that shaped Bogart's early screen image. Pardoned from a long prison stretch, the weary robber is clearly more eager to savour his new freedom than immediately swing back into action. But his early release has been engineered by a mobster who wants Earle to pull off a high-stakes burglary, setting in motion a plot that is a prototype for doomed heist capers--a small, yet potent sub-genre that would later include Huston's The Asphalt Jungle (1950) and Stanley Kubrick's The Killing (1956).

What gives High Sierra its power, however, isn't the crime itself but Earle's collision with the younger, brasher confederates picked to help him, and the hard-edged but vulnerable taxi dancer they're competing for, played forcefully by Ida Lupino, who actually received top billing. Her attraction to the reluctant Earle is complicated by a convoluted sub-plot designed to showcase then starlet Joan Leslie, but the movie finally moves into its most gripping moments when the wounded Earle, pursued by police, flees ever higher toward the mountains. His final, suicidal showdown would become a clich&éacute; of sorts in lesser films, but here it provides a wrenching climax sealed by Lupino's vivid final scene. --Sam Sutherland --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Bob Salter TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 13 April 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
"High Sierra" was a seminal film in the career of Humphrey Bogart. In stark contrast to his privileged New England background, Bogart had already established himself in the gangster genre with his memorable role as Duke Mantee in "The Petrified Forest"(36). It was a role that had not quite propelled him to super stardom, but that was to change after "High Sierra". Paul Muni was originally offered the role but eventually turned it down. It was then offered to George Raft who was allegedly talked out of it by Bogart, who coveted the role for himself. The rest as they say is history!

The film follows the fortunes of gangster Roy "Mad Dog" Earle, who seems to be loosely based on John Dillinger who is mentioned in the film. Earle following his release from prison at the start of the film goes straight back to his old ways, and is immediately involved in planning a hotel robbery with a couple of young thugs and their moll. But things aren't like the old days, and the new breed of gangsters can't be trusted. Things start to go wrong early on. Earle has already spent time in prison and he doesn't intend going back. We head to a spectacular finale, where the forces of law and order close in on the last gangster on the slopes of spectacular Mount Whitney, the highest mountain in the USA. Much in the same way as James Cagney did in "White Heat"(48), Earle refuses to go quietly.

The film is based on the book of the same title by W R Burnett, who also wrote the screenplays for "Little Caesar" and "Scarface". The screenplay was also co-written by Burnett with the young John Huston. The film was to mark the start of a long and fruitful, and hard drinking friendship between Bogart and Huston.
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Good story but a bit slow at times. Good performance from Mr Bogart and his leading lady. I enjoyed it.
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Prior to making High Sierra, Bogart was typecast as a thug or gangster or in his own words, playing 'George Raft's brother-in-law'. With High Sierra his chance finally came to be the star of a film, rather than well down the cast list. This film demonstrates just how good an actor Bogart really was. He veers brilliantly from being ruthless, able to kill without batting an eyelid, to being sensitive, caring and generous, and back again.
The film speeds along at a good pace, taking in some incredible scenary on its way. There is something for everyone - romance, humour, car chases and a shootout. Thee is even a cute dog called 'Pard' (played by Bogart's own dog)if you like animal films!
Whilst not being Bogart's best film, this is certainly not far behind, and would make a good introduction to the films of the great man.
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The story of "Mad Dog Roy Earle" Bogart made this role his own Being in on a robbery organised by a dying mobster friend,which consequently goes wrong Roy Earle finds himself torn between the love he has for a crippled girl whom he tries to help,and his own hopless situation.When he is finally forced to quit the scene and run in company with a little stray dog "Pard"( who has a reputation for bring bad luck to any one he befriends,) and his lady friend played by Ida Lupino,the stage is set for the films tension filled ending on the freezing heights of the Sierra Nevada mountains .Watch and enjoy!
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A clasic, Lupino Bogart and a hot script keep this tense gangster opera ticking to the fiery ending ok the hard bitten anti hereo with a soft spot for the inocent and fragile bit is now a film cliché at least as old at this film; but just view the film from within the context of when it was made anyway the fast paced action and Bogarts performance as well as some unsung but believable character acting from the arrey of supporting artists should hock you in Bogart dosent play any smart moves to the camera just works away at his craft like the seasoned pro that he was sultry Ida Lupino brings a tough but humane heart to the film ,much later she gave a brave unglamorous performance as Steve Mcqueen's mother in Peckinpah's underrated rodeo picture Junior Bonner(1972)she also cut a stride for herself as one of Hollywood's first female directors during the late forties early fifties.
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Format: DVD
Warner Bros. Pictures presents "HIGH SIERRA" (1941) (100 min/B&W) -- Starring Humphrey Bogart, Ida Lupino, Alan Curtis, Arthur Kennedy, Joan Leslie & Henry Hull

Directed by Raoul Walsh

Witty dialogue, great on-location direction by Raoul Walsh, a cute dog, and a climactic car chase that wouldn't be equaled until "Bullitt" (1968) with Steve McQueen, are just some of this films other virtues, plus a great cast of actors lead and supporting.

Special footnote, Incidentally, a lot of people have mistakenly thought that Pard was played by the same dog that played Toto in "The Wizard of Oz," but in fact it was Bogart's own pet, Zero. Hopefully the star negotiated a decent contract for his mutt.

This film made Humphrey Bogart a major star while creating what can be called the birth of American film noir. If it's not in your film collection it should be. Roy Earle was a new type of character -- the truly romantic criminal. Bogart would play variations on Earle throughout his career, though he rarely exceeded his triumph here. Giving much of the credit to Bogie's acting, some more credit must be extended to the screenwriter, John Huston. "High Sierra" was the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

Haunting score by composer Adolph Deutsch.

Bogart's interpretation already showed signs of the special qualities that were to become an important part of his mystique in a few more films. As a film, "High Sierra" has other notable qualities, particularly Ida Lupino's strong and moving performance as Marie, the girl who brings out Roy Earle's more human emotions.

Many fine moments with Bogey -- including a memorable speech within his cabin hideout. This is one of the best portraits of a desperate outlaw in film history.
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