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The Court-Martial of Billy Mitchell [Blu-ray] (1955)

Gary Cooper , Rod Steiger , Otto Preminger  |  NR |  Blu-ray
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)

List Price: $29.95
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Product Details

  • Actors: Gary Cooper, Rod Steiger, Ralph Bellamy, Elizabeth Montgomery, Jack Lord
  • Directors: Otto Preminger
  • Writers: Milton Sperling
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, NTSC, Widescreen, Anamorphic, Color
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.55:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Olive Films
  • DVD Release Date: July 30, 2013
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00CZ7AL50
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #43,084 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Court-Martial of Billy Mitchell [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Editorial Reviews

Gary Cooper (High Noon) portrays a controversial American hero in this electrifying, true story of he most sensational military trial in our Country's history. It is the end of WWI and the birth of aerial warfare. Though airplanes had only been used for reconnaissance, Brigadier General Billy Mitchell has foreseen their deadly power and importance in future combat as bombers and fighter planes. But his superiors in the Army Air Service are blind to his prophecy and when Mitchell begins to campaign to build an armed Air Force against their will, they brand him a traitor and summon him for court-martial. Although the Army attempts to cover up the trial, it becomes an explosive media event that explores the self-serving incompetence of the military and how one man's vision can serve to shape history. The stellar cast includes Charles Bickford, Ralph Bellamy, Rod Steiger, Elizabeth Montgomery, Jack Lord, Peter Graves, Darren McGavin and Fred Clark. Directed by Otto Preminger (Anatomy of a Murder).

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
51 of 56 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Ladies and gentlemen: another disaster from Artisan! December 19, 2003
By A Customer
Format:DVD
The back of the box says Full Screen Format! What? This is a CinemaScope picture? So I put it in my player just to check it out. And what do I see? Some kind of letterbox image (about 1:2) far from the correct aspect ratio, but better than full screen. Alas, it is not enhanced for anamorphic playback, and the colors are washed out and fuzzy! So is the focus, and there is some kind of "net" pattern so obvious and distracting most of the time, that I finally decide to rate this DVD as unwatchable! Sad, indeed! Yet another disaster from Artisan, one of many DVD distributors that you cannot rely on. Sure, they have given us some pretty nice transfers, but most are far below acceptable standards. When will these people learn that quality means happy consumers, and happy consumers means better sales?
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The man who predicted the Pearl Harbor attack! March 24, 2003
Format:VHS Tape
I am reviewing the movie "The Court Martial of Billy Mitchell", and not the VHS copy of it. Gen. Billy Mitchell was the Army/Air Force General who in the 1920's; said, and showed, that aircraft bombers could sink battleships. He also said,(under oath), in the 1920's that the Japanese could launch a Sunday morning aircraft carrier attack on Pearl Harbor, and devestate the USA Army and Navy units stationed there. ENDING SPOILER-Gen. Mitchell was court martialed and forced to resign his commission more for the way he said what he did, than for what he had to say. Seeing this film with it's great cast, especially Gary Cooper in the title role, makes me think about what might have been IF Gen. Mitchell been a little more tactful, or had his higher ranking officers been a little more willing to listen to him. Citizen Billy Mitchell died in the 1930's, so he was not alive in 1941. This is an outstanding film about the only person a US military aircraft was named for; the B-25 Mitchell, and I think it should be shown every Dec. 7th, along with "Tora, Tora, Tora".
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Billy's Universal Choice: Obedience or Integrity July 24, 2003
Format:VHS Tape
The events of December 7, 1941 may have come as a total surprise to nearly all Americans, but not to Billy Mitchell, who years earlier had predicted with astonishing accuracy the details of an attack that would cripple United States naval powers for more than two years. In THE COURT MARTIAL OF BILLY MITCHELL, director Otto Preminger dramatizes the dilemma of Billy Mitchell, who had to struggle with his sense of duty that ran counter to a conscience that refused to let his fellow airmen die in preventable air crashes. Gary Cooper as Billy Mitchell was 54 when he made this film and his true life weariness and evident age did not detract from a performance that did not differ materially from the laid back roles he had earlier showed as Lou Gehrig and Alvin York. As disgraced Colonel Billy Mitchell, Cooper uses his stone face and immense dignity that allows him to maintain his purpose while others lose theirs in the heat of the moment. Colonel Mitchell has seen too many trusted comrades die when he and they knew that their deaths were caused by the criminal negligence of his military superiors. Mitchell does the unthinkable. He goes public with his accusations and is court martialed.
The first half sets up this courtroom drama with sterling performances by Jack Lord, Elizabeth Montgomery, and Darren McGavin. As his friends die, you can sense that Mitchell's iron-bound duty not to break the chain of command is beginning to rust. The dramatic center of the first half is internal, as Cooper portrays a man who knows what he wants to do but is forbidden to do. The second half is the trial itself. Although Cooper has to share center stage with Charles Bickford as the presiding judge and a young and arrogant Rod Steiger as the prosecuting attorney, Cooper manages a rare balancing act.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars when you buy Olive Films ... you get the pits August 20, 2013
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
I was so excited that this was being released on BR. Gary Cooper is a favorite, and being a baby boomer what red blooded american boy wasn't in love with Elizabeth Montgomery in the 60's? My low review isn't for this classic film but the company that issues this and is issuing a lot of classics from the Republic Pictures and Paramount valuts, Olive Films. Because they've been releasing so many classic films from John Wayne to Robert Mitchum...I think I've bought about 40 of their blu rays. They do have fun covers that feature original art but they also feature Criterion Films sized list prices!! Nearly 30 bucks for a 60 minute black and white John Wayne film is not an uncommon expense. They obviously know they have a stranglehold on us collectors and are taking full advantage. The problem is that they rarely if ever bring anything to the party that their lower priced competitors do in the way of special features (heck in their substandard BR of McLintock they lost all the wonderful special features of the Paramount DVD McLintock.

My biggest gripe with Olive and why I say "when you buy Olive you get the pits" is that they do NO remastering , NO fixing , NO color correction, they take whatever print they have in whatever state, and release it as is. Because of the instability of color , it ends up that the movies of the 40's in Black in White are often better looking than some of their 50's and 60's color releases. There are exceptions their edition of "The Quiet Man" is the ONLY watchable version
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Gary Cooper as Billy Mitchell
This is a pretty good video movie for the story that it tells. It gives a lot of the atmospherics that seemed to attract Hollywood some years ago. Read more
Published 27 days ago by Chip Deyerle
5.0 out of 5 stars Another sleeper
Why weren't we taught about this true story in high school? Gary Cooper portrays a man standing alone for his principles and the good of our country against the military... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Gwendolyn
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Old Movie
Upfront I am an Aviator and value films like this. A great story of one of the pioneers of Aviation who stepped out of the box to convince others that Aviation had arrived and was... Read more
Published 1 month ago by William N. Phillips
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Recreation of Actual Events
Billy Mitchell was a heroic, yet tragic figure in American military aviation history. Gary Cooper plays the role quite well. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mark W. Johnson
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great true story
This wonderful true story about one of the most under acknowledged war heroes of WW-1 is a must see for old movie buffs...
Published 3 months ago by MICHAEL MULROONEY
5.0 out of 5 stars Good movie
I liked this movie a lot. It was interesting to watch. It was very dramatic. Normally, I fall asleep to movies like this. This one kept me awake the whole time. 10/10. Read more
Published 7 months ago by A. Sayman
5.0 out of 5 stars great film
great film, entertaining and engaging history hat not many may know, highly recommended.
This needed more words so here they are
Published 7 months ago by John J. Blount
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved the movie
Great movie great to see Gary cooper & a great cast in a great old movie loved it and recommend it
Published 8 months ago by tony stephenson
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Courts Martial drama
As a retired Army officer and small town lawyer, I revisited this movie, which I had not seen since I was a boy. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Small Town Lawyer "clarence"
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice to Have Affordable Preminger; Poor Transfer
Olive Films usually does a good job in bringing out some of Paramount and Republic's unwanted DVDs and Blu-rays, but in the case of Otto Preminger's 1955 otherwise out-of-print... Read more
Published 8 months ago by V. Risoli
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