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The Long Arm [DVD]

4.4 out of 5 stars 61 customer reviews

Price: £9.95 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Jack Hawkins, John Stratton, Dorothy Alison, Michael Brooke, Sam Kydd
  • Directors: Charles Frend
  • Writers: Campbell Christie, Dorothy Christie, Janet Green, Robert Barr
  • Producers: Michael Balcon, Thomas N. Morahan
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: U
  • Studio: Ealing Studios
  • DVD Release Date: 11 Feb. 2008
  • Run Time: 92 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000UYBOYW
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 24,644 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Superior police procedural drama, with a strong cast, from 1956 that portrays solid and patient police work without any of the psychological undertones more prevalent in the 'noir' thrillers of the same period. This film follows a team of British coppers, led by Supt. Tom Halliday (Jack Hawkins), as they try to solve a complex case involving a series of burglaries.

From the Back Cover

No subtitles

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

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I really enjoyed the story & the acting but the copy I bought from Amazon UK has extremely poor sound quality. Even given the age of the film the sound is woeful. It is very very hard to hear throughout & at times the static is so bad not a word can be heard. I would have sent it back except that postage from Australia to the UK is excessive.
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Just a quick note to make the following point:

Contrary to other reviews of this DVD the copy I recently bought has no audio problems; sound is as crystal clear throughout as the image, which is exceptional - as good as anything put out by Criterion, for example.

Added to which - what a lovely film!

Highly recommended.
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An excellent film long overdue for dvd release, no doubt about it. BUT the copy I was sent was almost completely inaudible even with the volume turned up high.
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One of the incidental pleasures of watching a film over fifty years old is the insight into - and for some the recollection of - the world of its day. Here the almost traffic-free streets of London feature in a police procedural movie which was the last to be made at the old Ealing studios. The story concerns the tracking down of a serial burglar who has been cracking the safes of large firms across the country and is told skilfully enough to hold the attention throughout. If you were enjoying British movies in the fifties you will certainly enjoy watching Jack Hawkins and other familiar faces in 'The Long Arm', whose appeal has held up remarkably well.
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Made at a time when Scotland Yard could have a simply frightful time catching a smash and grab raider, apart from anything else; when the old hands can remember criminals whole families and what prisons they are/were in; when an anonymous caller gives a tip off and all Scotland Yard swings immediately and earnestly into action; when crimes were recorded on index cards and a whole army of men employed to manually cross check everything; when department store sales clerks spoke with an Oxbridge accent; when everybody smoked; when kids thought it was wizard to have lemonade (with straws) at birthday parties; when your wife worried about you; and when you called your quarry 'chummy'...

This is so cheesy by modern standards that it's almost a self-parody - almost, but not quite. (In fact I did burst out laughing when Jack Hawkins was speculating about 'chummy', with a anguished look on his face). Nevertheless, it still manages to tell a great story and has some glorious outdoor photography of the period, especially central London. Hawkins is great, playing his role with dogged determination and typical British resolve.

Another thing that strikes me watching these old b/w films is just how brilliantly even the minor characters are played. Watch out for Meredith Edwards - the garage owner in Wales, and particularly the flawless understated acting of the woman in her only scene who offers Hawkins a cup of tea, but he declines).

Great fun from a long gone era and highly recommended for many reasons including, but not limited to, the story.
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A cracking 50's police thriller which is well scripted if a little dated.
1st class acting by all with some genuinly heart warming banter between the characters particularly Jack Hawkins and Meredith Edwards(the garage owner in Wales)...........Oh and look out for a young Stratford Johns as a Chester Police Constable with one line to deliver when Hawkins comes 'up north' Good production values too as Johns even has the Prince of Wales feathers on his tunic eppaulettes..Wow what detail for a 4 second scene! Only downside being the poor sound quality at times noticably during the search of the Ford Pilot at the police garage when vital evidence is recovered. Still a good film to keep.
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I prefer to watch my old black and white films, the only thing that annoys me is that they were all made to short. I started to remember that I had seen this movie when I was a child, when it was coming to the end. I thought it was brilliant! Because I was quite young, I could remember the film, but I could never recall the title, but luckily for me there is a site which specialise in classic movies, and the great thing is that they are starting to restore and remaster them. The sound quality was a bit poor, but that didn't spoill my enjoyment of this film. The picture quality on my DVD was excellent. This film is worth watching as a Sunday afternoon matinee, or on a rainy cold day. I watched Laughter in Paradise and Stage Fright, quite often, and I've already watched this DVD several times over already. This DVD is a definate much watch movie.
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Very difficult to get hold of until now, but worth watching.

Jack Hawkins is the over-worked Police detective, given the task of cracking the case, before the clever burglar cracks another safe. However, it isn't as easy as all that. The burglar is dead and he doesn't crack safes, he opens them with a third key (hence the American title for this film "The Third Key"). The crime of burglary becomes murder, when the deadly wife of the "dead" safe-cracker, aims the getaway car at the night watchman and runs him over, in her desperate bid to get away.

A trip to Wales in a Rolls Royce, a missed trip to Farnborough airshow with his lad and the detective is now firmly on the case! The net is closing on the criminals and there's only one place to catch them: at the Royal Festival Hall.

A good plot, a quality cast and the usual, polished acting of Jack Hawkins, makes this a film to watch and keep! It's good to see it out on DVD!
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