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THE AMAZING DR. CLITTERHOUSE Takes one to know one! Doctor Edward G. Robinson infiltrates a gang to study the ways of hoodlum Humphrey Bogart. LITTLE GIANT He got class, see? His bootleg beer biz is tapped out, so Robinson aims to join Santa Barbara's polo set. LARCENY, INC. Bag the swag! Ex-jailbirds run a luggage shop while attempting to tunnel into the bank next door. Robinson, Broderick Crawford, Jane Wyman and Anthony Quinn star. INVISIBLE STRIPES Once a con always a criminal? Ex-yard mates Bogart and George Raft return to the life. With William Holden. KID GALAHAD "Best of the '30s boxing movies"* stars Bogart, Robinson, Bette Davis and Wayne Morris (*David Shipman, The Story of Cinema). Bonus Disc: All-New WHV Feature-Length Documentary! PUBLIC ENEMIES: THE GOLDEN AGE OF THE GANGSTER FILM Times were tough. They were tougher. A fascinating new look at the mobsters, the movies and the studio that ruled the gangster genre.]]>
The Amazing Dr. Clitterhouse has its dark side; The Little Giant and Larceny, Inc. are broad comedies pure and simple. From the outset, Robinson chafed against his stereotyping in gangster roles, and The Little Giant (1933), as the title suggests, gave him the chance to turn "Little Caesar" on his head. With Franklin D. Roosevelt's election spelling doom for the bootlegging business, "Bugs" Ahern (Eddie G.) retires from mob life to get some culture and mingle with the swells on the polo fields of California. Roy Del Ruth directed, albeit with less pizzazz than usual. Larceny, Inc. (1942) finds newly paroled convicts Robinson and Broderick Crawford taking over a Manhattan luggage store that happens to sit next to a bank that, alas, economic setback may compel them to rob. The movie has its charms--inconveniently for their plans, the guys' business becomes a success and sparks a revival of their Gotham neighborhood--but it's distinctly inferior to the other gangster comedies in which Lloyd Bacon directed Robinson, A Slight Case of Murder (in Vol. 2) and Brother Orchid (Vol. 3). This was the final film Robinson made under his long Warner contract. (Incidentally, the audio commentary on it is bone-crushingly pedantic.) Lloyd Bacon also directed Invisible Stripes (1939), starring George Raft as a not-very-hardened criminal trying to go straight following a prison term. Trouble is, society keeps distrusting him, and when it appears his desperate younger brother (William Holden) might turn to crime, Raft agrees to abet his old prison-mate Humphrey Bogart on some holdups. At a double-feature-ready length of 80 minutes, Invisible Stripes feels like an A-movie struggling to break out of B constraints. There's some excellent stuff, as when garage mechanic Holden and the sweetheart (Jane Bryan) he can't afford to marry cross paths with wealthy revelers out on the town; and Raft and Bogart convincingly have a friendship above and beyond the obligations of genre plotting. But like the underdressed neighborhood street scenes (in contrast to the flavorful busyness customarily observed in Warner gangster pictures), mostly the movie leaves us wanting more. And that includes more of the gang's-all-here supporting cast: Paul Kelly, Marc Lawrence, Joseph Downing, Bert Hanlon, Frank Faylen, et al. Completing Vol. 4 is Public Enemies: The Golden Age of the Gangster Film (2008), a feature-length documentary that serves up solid history and astutely chosen clips, from The Great Train Robbery (1903) through GoodFellas (1990). A small army of commentators holds forth on the gangster film as "the myth for the urban immigrant," and there's lots of anecdotal material about not only icons Cagney, Robinson, and Bogart ("the badder bad guy" brought in as the two previous stars turned legit) but also key directors and writers. Tasty. --Richard T. Jameson
Good old Edward G. Robinson movie with Bette Davis. How can you go wrong? If your a fan of classic movies than you will enjoy this movie. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Maria P. Mason
Bought this for the husband for Christmas. He loves gangster movies having 1 - 3. Watched one so far. Sure to be a hit!Published 10 months ago by Alan S. Doran
Excellent movie! Interesting to the end! Includes some of cinemas best actors and actresses!Published 11 months ago by deb
As an avid movie buff, especially when it comes to classic films like these, this is a definite welcome to my large and growing home library collection. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Wa2oosy
This is one of the those old classics that you can watch over and over again. The story of a boxing promoter who is involved with gangsters, is impressed with ayoung guy and trys... Read morePublished 17 months ago by KIRT P.
Bogart, Davis, and Robinson are some of my favorite actors and did a superb job in this movie.
I enjoyed it very much.
This is one volume of four I purchased for someone as a gift. He is in the process of replacing all of his VHS tapes (remember those)? He loves the DVD's. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Ms Missy