Tyrone Power Matinee Idol Collection (Cafe Metropole/Girls Dormitory/Johnny Apollo/Daytime Wife/Luck of the Irish/Ill Never Forget You/That Wonderful Urge/Love Is News/This Above All/Second Honeymoon)
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Disc 1: CAFE METROPOLE '37 + GIRLS DORMITORY '36 Disc 2: JOHNNY APOLLO '40 + DAYTIME WIFE '39 Disc 3: LUCK OF THE IRISH '48 + I'LL NEVER FORGET YOU '51 Disc 4: THAT WONDERFUL URGE '48 + LOVE IS NEWS '37 Disc 5: THIS ABOVE ALL '42 + SECOND HONEYMOON '37
If you're a Tyrone Power fan, it's very difficult to complain about the star's showing on DVD. Not only are Power's best-known films available, but the Tyrone Power Matinee Idol Collection serves up 10 titles that greatly fill in his tenure at Twentieth Century Fox. There isn't a classic in the set, just the kind of titles that audiences ate up when the handsome young actor was at his most popular. The oldest film in the box is Girls' Dormitory (1936), and Power is barely in it--he shows up in the final 10 minutes of this 66-minute drama. But it's a good one, energetically directed by Irving Cummings, about schoolmaster Herbert Marshall being dangerously worshipped by young student Simone Simon. The ending just might surprise you. Café Metropole is an efficient comedy about restaurant owner Adolphe Menjou and his plot to pay off debts by getting Power to impersonate a Russian prince and woo wealthy Loretta Young. Young is also Ty's co-star in two other 1937 pictures. Second Honeymoon pits them as a pair of exes, romping around Miami as Loretta shows off her new husband. The movie's a weirdly coarse approximation of the screwball formula that was in the air at the time. Love is News is better: Power is a newspaper reporter whose stories makes life uncomfortable for heiress Young; she turns the tables by pretending to be engaged to him. Director Tay Garnett gets a loose, knockabout quality into the performances, and Don Ameche contributes some Front Page salt. The remake of Love is News is also included: That Wonderful Urge (1948), with Power back in his role and Gene Tierney as the heiress. Day-Time Wife (1939) pairs Power with new Fox starlet Linda Darnell; he's too busy at work with his secretary, and she takes a job as a secretary herself (to wolfish boss Warren William, who could do wolfish better than anybody). In this battle of the sexes, male chauvinism reigns supreme. Power squirmed at Fox's lightweight view of him, and Johnny Apollo has a little more guts: Power is a feckless Ivy League lad who becomes disillusioned and falls into the world of the mob. You can see the actor excited by the darker possibilities of the role--but rest assured he's still every inch the elegant clotheshorse in this one. This Above All (1942) is a strange story and a dry run for Power's role as the soul-searcher in The Razor's Edge: he's an embittered soldier questioning the purpose of fighting the war. Patriotic Joan Fontaine has a few speeches for him, and director Anatole Litvak makes it all look sharp.After a run of dramatic roles and a break for WWII service, Power came back to romantic comedy with The Luck of the Irish, a whimsy-heavy thing about a reporter who tries to sell out--but not if a leprechaun (Cecil Kellaway) and a sweet Irish lass (Anne Baxter) have anything to do with it. The movie's no great shakes, but the DVD provides an option to watch the Irish scenes with green tinting, a novelty from the original theatrical release.
I'll Never Forget You (aka The House in the Square), directed by Roy Ward Baker, is a costume picture with a supernatural edge--and fans of Somewhere in Time will recognize a kindred spirit. Ty plays a scientist whose house is a portal to the 18th century, where he travels to impersonate a lookalike ancestor. This nifty romance co-stars Ann Blyth and gives a delightfully foppish role to Dennis Price. Short documentaries fill out the box, including a lovely reminiscence from Power's three children. --Robert Horton
- Aspect Ratio : 1.33:1
- Is Discontinued By Manufacturer : No
- MPAA rating : s_medNotRated NR (Not Rated)
- Product Dimensions : 7.5 x 5.5 x 1.5 inches; 15.2 Ounces
- Item model number : 440945059084
- Director : Walter Lang, Henry Hathaway, Anatole Litvak
- Media Format : Multiple Formats, Box set, Subtitled, Black & White, Full Screen, NTSC
- Run time : 14 hours and 12 minutes
- Release date : July 29, 2008
- Actors : Tyrone Power, Loretta Young, Simone Simon, Herbert Marshall, Ruth Chatterton
- Subtitles: : English, French, Spanish
- Language : Unqualified, English (Dolby Digital 1.0)
- Studio : 20th Century Fox
- ASIN : B0016MOWPU
- Number of discs : 1
- Best Sellers Rank: #66,486 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
- Customer Reviews:
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There are 5 discs in the boxed set:
"Girls Dormitory" (1936): In less than 3 minutes on-screen, in a minor role, the astonishingly handsome Power 'steals' this melodrama! A rather tame love triangle between middle-aged, bachelor professor Herbert Marshall, his devoted co-worker (Ruth Chatterton), and a barely-legal nymphet (Simone Simon, in her American debut), becomes every 'dirty old man's' fantasy, with it's off-kilter resolution...2 stars (out of 5)
Special Feature: Brief look at Power's life and acting career...
"Café Metropole" (1937): Delightful sophisticated comedy that marked Power and Loretta Young's third teaming. Penniless Power must repay a debt to Parisian club owner Adolph Menjou by pretending to be a Russian count, to fleece heiress Young. Sly and funny, this screwball tale is silly without losing it's charm... 4 1/2 stars (out of 5)
Special Feature: Two deleted Dance Sequences featuring Bill 'Bojangles' Robinson...
Two versions of the same story, each starring Power...
"Love is News" (1937): Glib, muck-raking reporter Power is given a taste of his own medicine when heiress Loretta Young falsely announces they are engaged. In their second of five films together, both seem too young and 'nice' for their roles, but the comedy benefits immensely from Don Ameche's energized 'take' as Power's boss, and grand support by George Sanders and Slim Summerville. Great fun! 3 1/2 stars (out of five)
Special Feature: A look at Power and Young's five films, with recollections by Young's daughter (by Clark Gable)...
"That Wonderful Urge" (1948): Padded remake of "News" offers Power, at 34, more believable as the opportunistic reporter, but his co-star, Gene Tierney, lacks Young's warmth and compassion. This time around, the heiress fibs they are married, but even with more comic opportunities, the film lacks sparkle (although Chill Wills does a nice turn in the Summerville role)...2 1/2 stars (out of five)
"This Above All" (1942): Dunkirk survivor/deserter Power finds redemption in the love of WAAF Joan Fontaine, and the kindness of the British people who befriend him as he eludes the authorities. While Power's American accent is incongruous in the leading role, he is very sincere, and Fontaine is terrific, with excellent support from Thomas Mitchell and Nigel Bruce. A British flag-waving drama, to be sure, but still moving...4 stars (out of five)
"Second Honeymoon" (1937): Power and Young's fourth teaming, in a dated, silly comedy, of ex-husband Power attempting to win Young away from her boorish current spouse (Lyle Talbott). Typical 30s stereotypes (idle rich leading carefree, globe-trotting lives, alcohol abuse as funny, rather than a problem), redeemed, somewhat, by the stars' chemistry. Stuart Erwin sparkles as Power's bookish valet, and there is a cute in-joke about Power's resemblance to British star Ronald Colman (who had, in fact, co-starred with Young in three films). 2 1/2 stars (out of five)
"Day-Time Wife" (1939): Lightweight fluff of suspicious wife Linda Darnell (at just 16!), taking on a secretarial job with Warren William to discover why hubby Power might be cheating with his secretary. Dumb premise, but William, an old hand at playing lecherous bosses, lifts the film above average... 2 1/2 stars (out of five)
Special Feature: Power's three children reminisce about their dad...
"Johnny Apollo" (1940): Noirish melodrama of Power turning to a life of crime to pay off his embezzler father's debts. Power is surprisingly good in the darker role, as are Edward Arnold as his father, and Lloyd Nolan, as Power's racketeer mentor. Dorothy Lamour (fresh from "Road to Singapore") makes a very sexy leading lady for Ty! 4 1/2 stars (out of five)
"The Luck of the Irish" (1948): Comic fantasy of traveling journalist Power befriending a sly leprechaun (Cecil Kellaway), and a saucy innkeeper (Anne Baxter), while in Ireland, and being granted good luck that leads his ambitions awry. Sweet-natured, with able support by Lee J. Cobb and Jayne Meadows, but the film cries out to be actually filmed in Ireland, and in Technicolor, rather than just with green-tinted Irish sequences. 3 1/2 stars (out of five)
Special Feature: Jayne Meadows' memories of Tyrone Power...
"I'll Never Forget You" (1951): The much-anticipated return of the magical romantic fantasy, as modern-day nuclear physicist Power is struck by lightning, and dropped into the body of his ancestor, in Technicolor-hued 1784 London. He finds unexpected love with Ann Blyth (in one of her best roles), but is soon declared insane from his knowledge of the future! With the wonderful Michael Rennie in support, the film suffers from a dated atomic-testing sequence, and washed-out colors in the 1784 sequences, but the plot is still terrific, and would inspire 1980's "Somewhere in Time"... 5 stars (out of five)
Special Feature: Ann Blyth's photos while in London...
The collection is well-worth the price!
Cafe Metropole is with Loretta Young and Adolphe Menjjou. Forced to play a Russian Prince due to a bet, He meets and falls in love with Young.Fast paced and funny, I loved the film.
LUCK OF THE IRISH was filmed with a green tint when he's in a Ireland This film was not as good as the others, but it's not bad. and I'l never forget you. Based on the film Berkley Square, Ty goes back in time, which is then filmed in color. and must try to live s they did back then. However people see that he's not like the other people, And a women sees it but is not afraid like the others. This film was not able to be seen for years due to legal problems. Now you have a chance to see it. The other titles in this set I did not see, since I gave it to anoter Ty Power fan. Well worth it.
In the Tyrone Power Matinee Idol collection, we can follow Ty's progress from supporting player to leading man. Starting with 1936's GIRLS' DORMITORY, a B-programmer starring Herbert Marshall and Ruth Chatterton--and Simone Simon in her American movie debut--we find Power in a small supporting role; indeed he doesn't actually appear until the final ten minutes. The story, set in a picturesque German girls' boarding school, was I imagine quite risqué for the time. Eighteen-year-old graduating student Marie Claudel (Simone Simon) is attracted to middle-aged head lecturer Dr. Dominick (Herbert Marshall). Dominick is also the secret infatuation of plain-jane professor Anna (Ruth Chatterton). Ms Simon sparkles off the screen and her scenes with Herbert Marshall are very memorable. J. Edward Bromberg also has some great scenes playing a filthy-minded old psychology professor who is slapped silly by Chatterton in one of the best scenes.
It was his appearance in GIRLS' DORMITORY which first got Power noticed by film critics and the producers at Twentieth Century-Fox soon cast their promising young leading man in the first of several films with Loretta Young (LOVE IS NEWS) in 1937. LOVE IS NEWS is a breezy romantic comedy starring Young as Toni Gateson, an heiress who decides to get even with Steve (Power), an overzealous reporter, by announcing she's going to marry him. A snappy comedy in the tradition of Capra's "It Happened One Night".
1937 was a busy year for Young and Power, who also co-starred in two more movies that year--CAFÉ METROPOLE and SECOND HONEYMOON. CAFÉ METROPOLE is a delicious screwball comedy (very Ernst Lubitsch in nature) where Power--pretending to be a Russian prince--romances sparky American heiress Young. SECOND HONEYMOON is a cute spin on "Private Lives" with a plot that revolves around newly-remarried Young bumping into her former husband (Power) during a vacation with Hubby #2 (Lyle Talbot), only to discover their passion is still alive and well. Delightful support is provided by Claire Trevor, J. Edward Bromberg and Marjorie Weaver.
Sultry brunette Linda Darnell is Ty's leading lady in 1939's DAY-TIME WIFE. When Jane (Darnell) suspects her husband Ken (Power) of carrying on an affair with his secretary, she exacts secret revenge by applying as a secretary to one of his business partners (Warren William). Loretta Young was originally cast as Jane before stunning nineteen-year-old Darnell came on the scene. On the strength of their chemistry here, the two would be paired again in "The Mark of Zorro" in 1940.
Ty found his most dramatic role to date in the pre-noir favourite JOHNNY APOLLO in 1940, with the lovely Dorothy Lamour. Power is the son of a Wall Street embezzler (Edward Arnold) who is forced to fend for himself when his father is sent to prison.
A stirring wartime romance, THIS ABOVE ALL (based on the book by Eric Knight) paired Power with Joan Fontaine in 1942, and was one of his final film roles before heading off for active service in the Marines. It's always a pleasure seeing Ms Fontaine, and whilst she was often criticised in her early films for being too wooden, she delivers an exceptional performance. Tyrone also completed "The Black Swan", "Son of Fury", and "Crash Dive" before his enlistment. He returned to the screen in 1946.
It was back to romantic comedy territory in 1948's THE LUCK OF THE IRISH, a whimsical fantasy with Anne Baxter (his Oscar-winning co-star from "The Razor's Edge"). 1948 also saw Power back in his original role for a remake of LOVE IS NEWS entitled THAT WONDERFUL URGE, this time with "Razor's Edge" leading lady Gene Tierney in the Loretta Young role.
Finally, in 1951's thrilling, time-traveling love story I'LL NEVER FORGET YOU, Power is seen in breathtaking Technicolor scenes which also showcase the porcelain beauty of Ann Blyth to maximum effect. Tied up in legal and copyright battles, which prevented any possible home video or cable releases for many, many years, I'LL NEVER FORGET YOU finally makes it's long-awaited return with this box set collection.
Hopefully Fox will continue releasing these Tyrone Power boxes. In the third volume I'd love to see "Suez" (the final pairing of Power and Loretta Young), "Thin Ice", "Lloyd's of London", and maybe even "Ladies in Love".
Top reviews from other countries
The DVDs are plain, without artwork. A red band on the front of each DVD tells you, in very small print, what film is on each of the two sides of the DVD. It would have been more convenient to have each side done up with appropriate artwork including large-print titles, but you can get by without the art if you have good eyes or a magnifying glass to read the label on the red band.
My DVDs all played without any problem on my Toshiba DVD/VHS combination player. All the pictures looked and sounded good on my 4:3 traditional TV screen. (You don't need a wide monitor, as all these films, from 1936 to 1951, predated widescreen movies.) Only the very last film -- *I'll Never Forget You* -- had a slightly washed-out look, in the colour scenes -- but the DVD warns you that the print is not perfect, by stressing that it made use of the best film elements still available. But overall, there are no physical irritations which prevent enjoyment of the films.
The films all run for the full original running times (assuming that the running times given on the IMDb are accurate).
There are special features for every film, but none of them are anything to write home about. There are no commentaries. There are still galleries for all 10 films, generally advertising stills and stills from the films, but there are some behind-the-scenes production stills. There are trailers for four of the films, mostly the later ones. There are also several short features, two of them tied to specific films (a still gallery of pictures of actress Ann Blyth in London goes with *I'll Never Forget You*, and the 8-minute interview/featurette "Jayne Meadows Remembers" goes with *The Luck of the Irish*), and three of them on more general subjects ("Tyrone Power: Prince of Fox", "Ty and Loretta: Sweethearts", and "My Dad, Tyrone Power"). Much of the information in the interviews/featurettes duplicates what one can find on other DVDs of Power films, but there are a few biographical items about Power, Loretta Young, etc., that I had not heard before. Overall, the special features do add some value to the collection, but still, without commentaries on any of the films, the "special feature" grade here is only a B-plus.
However, for the films themselves, this collection rates an A. Some will say that there isn't a single truly great film in this collection, and if by "great" they mean *Gone with the Wind* or *The Mark of Zorro* or *You Can't Take It With You*, that is correct; but on the other hand, there isn't a single bad film in the collection, either. All these films are either good or very good. There wasn't one that I didn't enjoy, and I'm not even an active Tyrone Power fan. Some, of course, stood out as more impressive than others: *Love is News* (1937) is a very fine screwball comedy, in which both Power and Loretta Young sparkle; *Day-Time Wife* features an astonishing performance by a barely 16-year-old Linda Darnell, with lots of funny dramatic irony (at the expense of Power as the philandering husband) and a great performance by Warren William (who raises the quality of every movie he is in); *Johnny Apollo* is a very good gangster film, a genre in which Power is not often seen, but in which he does very well; *The Luck of the Irish* is a wonderful romance with a dash of humour and magic (with Cecil Kellaway as a standard-setting leprechaun!); and *I'll Never Forget You* [British title: *The House in the Square*], is a moody romance featuring time travel, as Power is transported to 1784 to fall into a hopeless but beautiful love affair with Ann Blyth. But even the lesser films have strong points. *Girls' Dormitory*, in which the stars are Herbert Marshall and Ruth Chatterton and Power has only a small part, is a tender story about a love triangle between a middle-aged bachelor schoolmaster (Marshall), his research assistant and teaching colleague (Chatterton) and his graduating student (Simone Simon, who is paired off with Power in Power's only scenes). *This Above All*, though too heavy-handed in its wartime patriotic message, still features excellent performances by both power and Joan Fontaine, and features just about the entire "British Colony" of Hollywood character actors (Holmes Herbert, Henry Stephenson, Gladys Cooper, Nigel Bruce, Forrester Harvey, Miles Mander, etc.), all delivering their usual spot-on characterizations. *Cafe Metropole*, while suffering from a weaker premise than the other two Power/Young films in the collection, features a masterful performance by the scheming Adolphe Menjou, whose smooth chicanery is the glue that holds the plot together and whose acting makes the film a pleasure to watch. There are also great moments in *Second Honeymoon* (a solid Power/Young romantic comedy) and *That Wonderful Urge* (a remake of *Love is News* with some variations, and Gene Tierney in the Loretta Young role), in which both Power and Tierney show a gift for physical comedy.
Power shows his whole range as an actor in this collection. You see him in 10 roles over a 15-year period. He shows that he can be romantic, funny, serious, or moody and introspective. Watching these films, I realize that Power is much more than a mere swashbuckler or hero of historical romances. He can do just about anything, and do it credibly. He's still not my favorite actor, yet I find him more or less convincing in every film. And the supporting casts in all the movies are top-notch, from the second leads right down to the bit players. What fun it is to watch the movies in this set, and stumble across Thomas Mitchell, Edward Arnold, Sara Allgood, Charles Lane, Charley Grapewin, Russell Hicks, Mary Field, Gene Lockhart, Lucile Watson, etc. The musical scores are good, the sets are good. This is Hollywood at its peak, from 1936 to 1951, when the studio system knew exactly how to produce a polished gem. So even if you are not knocked out by Power, if you love this period of film, you should enjoy this collection of ten more examples of fine Hollywood storytelling.
I got this set for $49.95 plus shipping from an Amazon-affiliated merchant. That's about $5 per movie, for rare (and mostly unavailable elsewhere) curios and/or gems from Hollywood's golden age. That's a bargain. (Try pricing any of these films individually, and you will see just how good a bargain!)
The collection would rate a 5 out of 5 with commentaries. As it stands, it's still worth 4.5 stars, so I round it up to 5 stars.
si l'on aime le jeu d'acteur de tyrone power c'est à ne pas manquer. spectateurs à vos DVD et passez un bon moment.