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PHOTOGRAPHY

MAN IN THE VAULT

DVD Review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 74 minutes, no extras

STUDIO: Paramount/ Batjac

RELEASE DATE: 6-6-2006

MAN IN THE VAULT is a picture that was originally released through RKO. William Campbell (who also starred in THE HIGH AND THE MIGHTY) is Tommy Dancer, a locksmith. Tommy gets pressured by a low level gangster, Willis Trent (Berry Kroeger) to make keys to a safety deposit box in a bank. Tommy blows it off as he falls for a girl, Betty (Karen Sharpe), who is used as an unwitting pawn to convince Tommy to do the job. Trent won't give up like any smart gangster. It would have been easier if he found some other locksmith to do it. No wonder he will never be the big gangster. He is just a stupid thug who fails to be a classy guy like the gangster he is trying to rob from. MAN IN THE VAULT goes by very quickly, but it doesn't hold up to the good crime pictures of the 1950s. The movie has suspense and romance, but the script isn't very good.

The big problem with MAN IN THE VAULT is that it ends abruptly and the ending is a real big disappointment. It wraps things up in a way that I think it would have helped to play the scene out longer. Also it builds up with no good pay off for the climax.

No extras for the film like the original theatrical trailer. Only a preview for John Wayne movies on DVD.

VIDEO: 1.85:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)

Another good transfer of a Batjac film. The black and white print is good except for a couple of spots where the print is very soft. Image detail is fantastic. Shadow values are good.

AUDIO: English Mono

Subtitles: English

Dialogue and all sound is clear and features no hiss.

FINAL ANALYSIS: MAN IN THE VAULT isn't perfect. It is the weakest film of the Batjac titles on DVD. It is good to watch once, but it is just one to rent if you can find it.

this review is (c)6-7-2006 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission (except for excerpts and a link to the review). Look for additional content at http://enterlinemedia.livejournal.com and send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com