Monday, September 15, 2008

DVDebuts Worth Noting-- THE SMALL BACK ROOM

This latest Michael Powell/Emeric Pressburger collaboration to finally reach DVD is as wonderful as fans of this British/Hungarian filmmaking team have come to expect. Smart, fastidiously filmed and very adult (the relationship between David Farrar and Kathleen Byron is a model of sophisticated bonding between thinking/feeling human beings during wartime), THE SMALL BACK ROOM also builds up a good head of steam -- and suspense. I would imagine Richard Lester must have thought back to this small, lean and underrated 1949 film when he made his impressive and also underrated Juggernaut some 25 years later. As usual, the transfer and DVD extras -- via Criterion -- are all a buff could wish for.

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