The Maltese Falcon [Blu-ray]
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The first disc contains the 1941 film noir classic, with a newly restored digital transfer. Digital artifacting is minimal if existent. Some film artifacting, such as occasional slight shakiness is present, but for the most part, the transfer is clean and free from flaws. The audio is presented in its glorious original mono mix, which has been cleaned up for this new transfer. An audio commentary is included, but I have yet to listen to it. Also included is a bonus called Warner Night At The Movies, which allows you to view a gallery of short subjects before The Maltese Falcon - the way you would have in 1941. The short subjects included are informative and/or entertaining and even include a couple of short cartoons. But the restored movie is, of course, the main attraction - and what an attraction!
Disc 2 contains a nice surprise - the first two film versions of The Maltese Falcon! The first one is the pre-code 1931 version starring Ricardo Cortez as Sam Spade and Bebe Daniels as Ruth Wonderly. Although this first version is very similar to the 1941 version, it contains a bit more sexual innuendo and suggestive scenes.Read more ›
Since the 1941 version (directed by John Huston and starring Humphrey Bogart, Mary Astor, Sydney Greenstreet, and Peter Lorre) is the one considered "definitive," it's not surprising that relatively few viewers realize that was actually Hollywood's third adaptation of Hammett's classic detective novel.
Satan Met a Lady (directed by William Dieterle and starring Bette Davis and Warren William), is by all accounts a disaster (a very loose adaptation by screenwriter Brown Holmes, who co-wrote this version), but the first Maltese Falcon, filmed in 1931 by director Roy del Ruth, is a terrific alternative for viewers who love the story and would just like to watch a different take on it. (Both films are faithful to the source, with few changes.)
The main difference in tone comes from Ricardo Cortez's portrayal of Sam Spade. Cortez's Spade is much more of a ladies man than Bogart's. In fact, the opening scene of the movie shows a woman leaving Spade's office, adjusting her stockings (later, he is shown picking up sofa cushions from the floor). His roving eye (and hand) also includes his secretary, Effie. Una Merkel plays Effie as if she's not only a willing participant in these shenanigans, but is also quite aware of Spade's other dalliances -- including partner Miles Archer's wife Iva (Thelma Todd) -- and thinks it's funny.
That lightness extends to Cortez, as well.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Film noir at it's finest. Bogart plays Sam Spade, private eye. He and his partner (Miles Archer) take a case from a mysterious woman and Miles agrees to watch her while she returns... Read morePublished 4 days ago by Bruce C.
Truly a classic film noir from the 1940's. All the elements of mystery & suspense while providing an element of truth to how passports
were interchangeable. Read more
One of the great noir-mysteries of the Forties, The Maltese Falcon made a star of Humphrey Bogart who until then had mostly been consigned to villain roles, usually as a gangster. Read morePublished 24 days ago by johnf
This movie is a must for anyone that loves the true Classics. I love The Maltese Falcon and I love Humphrey Bogart. I would highly recommend this movie to everyone!!! Read morePublished 25 days ago by timegirl
What can I possibly say about this film that hasn't already been said in the last 75 years? I recently had the chance to see The Maltese Falcon in theater due to a special showing... Read morePublished 27 days ago by Lancelot
one of the 2 or 3 greatest films ever made. Bogart at his best. amazing fast paced story that is as enjoyable the 100th viewing as it was the 1stPublished 1 month ago by Susan F.
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