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Strangers on a Train (Two-Disc Special Edition)

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Strangers on a Train: Special Edition (Dbl DVD)

Strange thing about this trip. So much occurs in pairs. Tennis star Guy (Farley Granger) hates his unfaithful wife. Mysterious Bruno (Robert Walker) hates his father. How perfect for a playful proposal: I'll kill yours, you kill mine. Now look at how Alfred Hitchcock reinforces the duality of human nature. The more you watch, the more you'll see. "Isn't it a fascinating design?" the Master of Suspense often asked. Actually, it's doubly fascinating. Hitchcock left behind two versions of Strangers on a Train. The original version (Disc 1) is an all-time thriller classic. A recently found longer prerelease British print (Disc 2) offers "a startling amplification of Bruno's flamboyance, his homoerotic attraction to Guy and his psychotic personality," according to Bill Desowitz of Film Comment. The laying bare of Bruno's hidden nature, along with the great set pieces (head-turning tennis match, disintegrating carousel) and suspense as only Hitchcock can deliver, makes for a first-class trip. DISC 1: • Final Release Version (101 Min.) with Commentary by Director Peter Bogdanovich, Psycho Screenwriter Joseph Stefano, Patricia Highsmith Biographer Andrew Wilson and Several Hitchcock Colleagues, Aficionados and Family Members, Plus the Suspense Master Himself in an Interview Excerpt • Theatrical Trailer • Languages: English & Français • Subtitles: English, Français & Español DISC 2: • Preview Version (103 Min.) Uncovered in 1991 and Theatrically Issued in 1996 • New Making-of Documentary Strangers on a Train: A Hitchcock Classic, with Farley Granger, Pat Hitchcock O'Connell, Film Historian Richard Schickel and Other Hitchcock Family Members, Colleagues and Aficionados Recalling the Making of a Suspense Landmark • 3 Intriguing Featurettes: The Hitchcocks on Hitch, Strangers on a Train: The Victim's P.O.V. and Strangers on a Train: An Appreciation by M. Night Shyamalan • Alfred Hitchcock's Historical Meeting Vintage Newsreel • Subtitles: English, Français & Español

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From its cleverly choreographed opening sequence to its heart-stopping climax on a rampant carousel, this 1951 Hitchcock classic readily earns its reputation as one of the director's finest examples of timeless cinematic suspense. It's not just a ripping-good thriller but a film student's delight and a perversely enjoyable battle of wits between tennis pro Guy (Farley Granger) and his mysterious, sycophantic admirer, Bruno (Robert Walker), who proposes a "criss-cross" scheme of traded murders. Bruno agrees to kill Guy's unfaithful wife, in return for which Guy will (or so it seems) kill Bruno's spiteful father. With an emphasis on narrative and visual strategy, Hitchcock controls the escalating tension with a master's flair for cinematic design, and the plot (coscripted by Raymond Chandler) is so tightly constructed that you'll be white-knuckled even after multiple viewings. Strangers on a Train remains one of Hitchcock's crowning achievements and a suspenseful classic that never loses its capacity to thrill and delight. --Jeff Shannon

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Special Features

  • Contains the 101 minute final release version and the 103 minute preview version
  • New making-of documentary "A Hitchcock Classic"
  • 3 featurettes: 'The Hitchcock's on Hitch," "The Victim POV," "An Appreciation by M. Night Shyamalan
  • Vintage newsreel
  • Trailers

Product Details

  • Actors: Farley Granger, Ruth Roman, Robert Walker, Leo G. Carroll, Patricia Hitchcock
  • Directors: Alfred Hitchcock
  • Producers: Alfred Hitchcock
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Closed-captioned, Dubbed, NTSC, Special Edition, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: September 7, 2004
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (303 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0002HOERG
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,784 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Strangers on a Train (Two-Disc Special Edition)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

73 of 82 people found the following review helpful By JWaite100@aol.com on August 14, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
"Strangers On A Train" should be rated as Hitchcock's absolute best.
To begin with, it features a perfect performance by Robert Walker, an actor who would be dead within a year after making this great movie.
Walker had previously played some wonderful roles, but he astounded the world with his acting ability once "Strangers On A Train" was released.
Aside from Walker's amazing performance, "Strangers On A Train" is full of half-hidden meanings which relate to the dual personality each of us possesses.
Hitchcock was a true genius, who not only understood both the dark and the bright sides of the human psyche, but who also knew how to depict that understanding by way of film.
I have watched "Strangers On A Train" a dozen or more times, and never tire of watching it yet again, each time finding something new that I had not noticed the time I watched it before.
But, the main reason I watch this film so often is to enjoy the exceptional , perfect performance by Robert Walker. Walker was only in his 30s when he died. He was a tragic figure in real life. He died much too soon, and we are very fortunate to be able to observe his wonderful talent, preserved in this movie, almost fifty years after his passing.
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107 of 123 people found the following review helpful By Edward on July 11, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
"Strangers on a Train" is that rarity, an Alfred Hitchcock film concerning which one talks about an actor's performance almost as much as the director's. The actor, of course, is Robert Walker, presenting his remarkable portrayal of Bruno Anthony, the rich, unstable man who offers the hero Guy Haines a deadly proposition: he'll kill Guy's wife Miriam (played by the interesting Laura Elliott) if Guy will kill Bruno's father. Because they are strangers on a train who do not know their intended victims, there will be no motives, therefore perfect alibis. Guy doesn't take Bruno seriously, which turns out to be a fatal mistake. Bruno is a complicated part. Although he is obssessed with his own superiority, he can be incredibly petty (popping a little boy's balloon just for the meanness of it), not to mention prissy ("I'm afraid I don't know what a `smoocher' is!"). The character seems to overshadow the entire movie, which is appropriate, because Bruno casts a shadow over the easy, affluent world in which he lives. When he crashes the senator's cocktail party, it's like Satan has arrived, striding through polite society. And, no, Walker was not nominated for an Oscar. Neither was Joseph Cotten for "Shadow of a Doubt". Neither was Anthony Perkins for "Psycho". The Academy evidently had difficulty with Hitchcock's anti-heroes. Hitchcock originally wanted William Holden for the role of Guy Haines, but I think Holden was so savvy and macho, it would have been difficult to accept him as a psycopath's pawn. Farley Granger is atheletic enough to be convincing as a tennis champ, but he has a boyishness which makes the vulnerable aspects of the character believable. The film is filled with the touches one associates with Hitchcock.Read more ›
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Paul J. Mular TOP 1000 REVIEWER on November 1, 2012
Format: Blu-ray
***** = Movie
**** = Blu-ray presentation (because "Preview" version is in Standard Definition.)
This new Blu-ray disc appears to be the same as the 2004 Remastered DVD (orange cover), which was a substantial improvement over the 1997 grainy DVD (blue cover).
So basically if you already have the 2004 Remastered DVD there is little reason to re-buy this on Blu-ray, but it is a must-have if you have the original 1997 grainy DVD.

The increased storage capacity of Blu-ray discs allows both the "final" and "preview" versions of the movie to appear on one disc. HOWEVER, the "preview" version is NOT IN HD, it and all of the documentaries (which are the same as on the old DVDs) are in STANDARD DEFINITION and accessed through the "bonus" button. Not a lot of extra effort was put into this Blu-ray release by Warner Brothers Home Video, no new bonuses.

The 1080p resolution of the "final release" version allows for a little more detail in the pinstripe jackets and night time scenery, even a little better than the 2004 Remastered DVD, but it may not be enough to recommend this for an upgrade unless you own a large screen HD-TV.

Although the "preview" version is only in Standard Definition, it will look a little better if only because of no DVD compression. On most standard size HD-TVs it will look the same.

The story is classic Hitchcock, two strangers who have someone they don't like meet on a train, one gets a wild morbid idea on how to solve their problems. Do they get away with it?
Outside of the "eyeglasses" and "Love Tunnel" scenes, visually this film does not have the Hitchcock style, the camera set-ups seem to be pretty standard. It looks nice but not memorable.
Read more ›
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206 of 252 people found the following review helpful By David Kusumoto on January 21, 2000
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
It's important to note two things about this edition of "Strangers on a Train." First off, the description on Amazon.com's page is incorrect. This DVD is not in widescreen. The second thing is, to you widescreen buffs out there (including myself) -- Relax! This film was never shot in widescreen. In fact, prior to 1953 (The Robe), there was never anything bigger than 35mm! This is why this film (and you'll be surprised to hear), many, many classic films will never be produced in widescreen. They don't exist. You should buy this DVD because of the video quality and the extra "goodies." Gone with the Wind in widescreen? Nope, never was, even though it was blown up to 70mm and cropped horribly in the 1968 re-issue. What's out there on DVD on Gone with the Wind is standard 35mm "TV semi-square" framing, because that's the way it was shot. Wizard of Oz, Casablanca, Citizen Kane? Nope, never shot in anything greater than 35mm. It's a Wonderful Life? No again. Widescreen is limited to theatrical films issued for the most part, after 1953, when competition with television forced studios to come up with the "panoramic" gimmicks to bring people back into the theaters. This is period (1953-1963) when Cinemascope, Todd-AO, VistaVision, Super Panavision 70 and other widescreen formats were born -- and the most extreme example was Cinerama, which used three cameras and is used to best effect in the DVD version of How the West Was Won. So don't fret, this DVD is good, crisp and clean and formatted as Alfred Hitchcock intended! Tomorrow's movies will be in IMAX (see Fantasia 2000, in selected theaters now).
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