Carnegie Hall

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Overview

Edgar G. Ulmer's Carnegie Hall (1947) is one of several of the renowned director's movies to show up in several different DVD editions, although it is probably the only one to exist in rival full-priced versions, the others being mostly confined to competing budget-priced releases. Kino Video has had their version out since 2001, and it's impressive enough, clocking in at 136 minutes. The movie is one of two distinctly music-centered dramas by Ulmer (the other in that category is Detour), and the director does a ...
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Overview

Edgar G. Ulmer's Carnegie Hall (1947) is one of several of the renowned director's movies to show up in several different DVD editions, although it is probably the only one to exist in rival full-priced versions, the others being mostly confined to competing budget-priced releases. Kino Video has had their version out since 2001, and it's impressive enough, clocking in at 136 minutes. The movie is one of two distinctly music-centered dramas by Ulmer (the other in that category is Detour), and the director does a good job of interweaving the musical and dramatic elements, despite the latter being a bit leaden in the opening segments. The Bel Canto Society edition claims a 144 minute running time, assembling together the complete performance and dialogue sequences from what seem to have been several different distributed versions of the movie -- the quality of the footage varies considerably in this edition, however, with some sequences, such as parts of Bruno Walter's "Meistersinger" prelude and other scenes looking very soft and washed out, especially compared with the Kino edition. On the other side of the ledger, however, the sound on the Bel Canto version is less compressed and more detailed. The disc has 18 chapters that more-or-less coincide with the musical highlights, and the image -- although never as consistently sharp and crisp as the Kino version -- is always watchable. There are no special features or bonus materials (the Kino disc is loaded with them) but the brighter sound proved to be a pleasure, bringing out the dialogue and the performances in a manner that made it all easier to appreciate. Essentially, the Kino edition is still the base-line version of this movie to own, because of its quality and the bonus materials, but the Bel Canto disc is not an immense step down and offers a couple of compensating features.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
If you can forget the silly story that Carnegie Hall has been saddled with and just concentrate on the musical performances, chances are you will have a pretty good time. It helps, of course, if you are not averse to classical music, for the scales are heavily tilted in that direction, despite the film's "swing and classics are both good stuff" resolution. In between the performances, you have to put up with a lot of nonsense that you've seen in plenty of other pictures, stuff about a son breaking his mother's heart by playing "low" music when she's been grooming him for the heights. You also have to be willing to believe that the titular musical establishment has a very liberal attitude toward career advancement among its employees and that the biggest names in classical music are pretty much just "reg'lar fellas." But stick with it, so that you can thrill to Bruno Walter (in a lovingly shot sequence), Artur Rubinstein's incredible artistry, the unique Leopold Stokowski, Lily Pons' scintillating coloratura, and many other classical giants of the day. The jazz musicians come off less well, with neither Vaughn Monroe nor Harry James seen at his best. Of the non-musicians, Mary O'Driscoll comes off well in a nothing part, and Marsha Hunt as the thread that ties it all together is generally effective. Edgar G. Ulmer's direction is a little staid for him, although he does make good use of the environment afforded by the Hall.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/8/2005
  • UPC: 789984079164
  • Original Release: 1947
  • Rating:

  • Source: Bel Canto Society
  • Region Code: 0
  • Aspect Ratio: Pre-1954 Standard (1.33.1)
  • Presentation: Black & White / Mono
  • Sound: monaural
  • Language: English
  • Time: 2:24:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Emile Boreo Henry
Marsha Hunt Nora Ryan
Joseph Buloff Anton Tribik
William Prince Tony Salerno, Jr.
Frank McHugh John Donovan
Walter Damrosch Guest Artist
Martha O'Driscoll Ruth Haines
Hans Yaray Tony Salerno, Sr.
Olin Downes Himself
Harold Dyrenforth Walter Damrosch
Jascha Heifetz Guest Artist
Harry James Guest Artist
Jan Peerce Guest Artist
Ezio Pinza Guest Artist
Lily Pons Guest Artist
Fritz Reiner Guest Artist
Arthur Rubinstein Guest Artist
Risë Stevens Guest Artist
Leopold Stokowski Guest Artist
Vaughn Monroe
The New York Philharmonic
Gregor Piatigorsky
Artur Rodzinski
Bruno Walter
Technical Credits
Walter Damrosch Director
Olin Downes Director
Edgar G. Ulmer Director
William Le Baron Producer
Russell Bennett Score Composer
Hal Borne Songwriter
Sam Coslow Songwriter
Fred R. Feitshans Jr. Editor
Karl Kamb Screenwriter
Sigmund Krumgold Score Composer
M. Portnoff & W. Songwriter
William J. Miller Cinematographer
Wilton Moore Songwriter
Boris Morros Producer
Seena Owen Original Story
Frank Ryerson Songwriter
Gregory Stone Songwriter
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Carnegie Hall
1. Play Feature [37:07]
2. B. Walter: Wagner, Die Meistersinger [8:54]
3. L. Pons: Rachmaninoff, "Vocalise" [2:38]
4. L. Pons: Delibes, Lakmé, "Bell Song" [5:51]
5. G. Piatigorsky: Saint-Saëns, "The Swan" [5:05]
6. R. Stevens: Samson et Dalila, "Mon Cœur S'ouvre À Ta Voix" [1:30]
7. R. Stevens: Bizet, Carmen, "Seguidilla" [1:55]
8. A. Rodzinski: Beethoven, Fifth Symphony, Fourth Movement [4:53]
9. A. Rubenstein: Chopin, "Heroic" Polonaise [3:36]
10. A. Rubenstein: De Falla, El Amor Brujo, "The Ritual Fire Dance" [1:37]
11. J. Peerce: Di Capua, "O Sole Mio" [9:06]
12. E. Pinza: Verdi, Simon Boccanegra, "A Te L'Estremo Addio" [4:51]
13. E. Pinza: Mozart, Don Giovanni, "Fin Ch'han Dal Vino" [1:52]
14. V. Monroe: Frank Ryerson and William Moore, "The Pleasure's All Mine" [1:22]
1. V. Monroe: Sam Coslow, "Beware, My Heart" [13:45]
2. J. Heifetz and F. Reiner: Tchaikovsky, Violin Concerto, First Movement [20:45]
3. L. Stokowski: Tchaikovsky, Fifth Symphony, Second Movement [8:16]
4. H. James, C. Previn, Conductor: Hal Borne, "Brown Danube" [5:49]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Carnegie Hall
   Play Feature
   Chapter Selection
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 20, 2011

    Purchased as Bel Canto rework

    CD purchased as recommended for music. Black and white picture is poor quality, story is dopey, sound is excellent. Purchase for viewing performances of musicians.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    Carnegie Hall is a stroll down memory land for the older set.

    I purchased the DVD of Carnegie Hall as a gift for my elderly aunt. She had seen the movie on TV and raved about it to me. It is a compilation of musical performances by many of the greats from back in the day. The plot of the story is very thin, and serves as a thread to weave together all the beautiful musical numbers. I have not seen the movie, but I am sure if you were to ask my aunt, she would recommend it for everyone who loves beautiful music.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews