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Witness for the Prosecution
     

Witness for the Prosecution

5.0 2
Director: Billy Wilder, Tyrone Power, Marlene Dietrich, Charles Laughton

Cast: Billy Wilder, Tyrone Power, Marlene Dietrich, Charles Laughton

 

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The courtroom drama, Witness for the Prosecution, is available on DVD in widescreen format, with a Dolby Digital Mono soundtrack. Considering the age of the film, this digital transfer is quite good. No scratches or artifacts are visible upon the negative, with only minor speckles showing up now and again. The image is clear, with the blacks showing up as

Overview

The courtroom drama, Witness for the Prosecution, is available on DVD in widescreen format, with a Dolby Digital Mono soundtrack. Considering the age of the film, this digital transfer is quite good. No scratches or artifacts are visible upon the negative, with only minor speckles showing up now and again. The image is clear, with the blacks showing up as jet-black, and the grays presented with a fine range of hues. The mono soundtrack is also very nice, without any apparent hissing or other faults, and the voices are crisp and clear. The original film trailer is available as a bonus, which isn't nearly as clean as the film itself, but is certainly presentable. Taken as a whole, MGM has done a fine job with this title, just erring a bit with a dearth of extras. Languages are offered in English and French, with English, French, and Spanish subtitles available.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Dan Jardine
Witness for the Prosecution is multi-faceted director Billy Wilder's stab at the courtroom genre, and he handles it with aplomb. Reworking Agatha Christie's stage play, based on Christie's own short story, Wilder retools the play in order to develop a humorous subtext in the interplay between the physically fragile defense attorney (Charles Laughton) and his overbearing but well-meaning nurse (real-life wife Elsa Lanchester). Laughton and Lanchaster have great chemistry and give fully realized performances that transcend the limitations of the genre. Wilder also jiggers Marlene Dietrich's role, wife of the accused, to make use of moments from her personal life, particularly the wonderful "Berlin cabaret" flashback sequence. The twists and turns of the plot are allowed to emerge unobtrusively in this methodically paced drama, and while the finale stretches credulity in order to circumvent the inevitable Production Code restrictions, Wilder's film is a completely satisfying experience anchored by a handful of memorable performances, including the last in Tyrone Power's illustrious career. Witness for the Prosecution was nominated for six Academy Awards, but ran up against David Lean's The Bridge on the River Kwai juggernaut, and was shut out.

Product Details

Release Date:
12/11/2001
UPC:
0027616869425
Original Release:
1957
Rating:
NR
Source:
Mgm (Video & Dvd)
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[B&W, Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital, monaural]
Time:
1:56:00

Special Features

Original theatrical trailer; English: Mono; French: mono; French & Spanish language subtitles

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Tyrone Power Leonard Stephen Vole
Marlene Dietrich Christine "Helm" Vole
Charles Laughton Sir Wilfrid Robarts
Elsa Lanchester Miss Plimsoll
Una O'Connor Janet MacKenzie
Torin Thatcher Mr. Meyers
John Williams Brogan-Moore
Henry Daniell Mayhew
Ian Wolfe Carter
Francis Compton Judge
Norma Varden Mrs. Emily French
Philip Tonge Inspector Hearne
Ruta Lee Diana
Molly Roden Miss McHugh
Ottola Nesmith Miss Johnson
Marjorie Eaton Miss O'Brien
J. Pat O'Malley Shorts Salesman

Technical Credits
Billy Wilder Director,Screenwriter
Howard Bristol Set Decoration/Design
Jack Brooks Songwriter
Emmett Emerson Asst. Director
Ernest Gold Musical Direction/Supervision
Russell Harlan Cinematographer
Edith Head Costumes/Costume Designer
Arthur Hornblow Producer
Joe King Costumes/Costume Designer
Harry Kurnitz Screenwriter
Fred Lau Sound/Sound Designer
Matty Malneck Score Composer
Dan Mandell Editor
Lawrence B. Marcus Screenwriter
Gus Norin Makeup
Harry Ray Makeup
Ralph Arthur Roberts Songwriter
Ray Sebastian Makeup
Edward Small Producer
Alexandre Trauner Art Director
Agatha Christie Source Author

Scene Index

Side #1 --
0. Scene Selections
1. Main Title [1:50]
2. Sir Wilfrid [1:13]
3. Welcome Back! [5:37]
4. A Criminal Matter [8:26]
5. Murder & Monocles [8:15]
6. Warrants & Wives [7:47]
7. A Remarkable Woman [5:36]
8. Clutching a Razorblade [11:43]
9. Trial/Cutting Testimony [2:41]
10. A Will-Ful Woman [8:47]
11. Calling Christine Helm [9:12]
12. Calling Leonard Vole [8:19]
13. Letters [8:02]
14. "Damn You!" [8:06]
15. A Perfect Execution [8:05]
16. End Credits [11:58]

Customer Reviews

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Witness for the Prosecution 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A magnificently done film. Dietrich is superb. Charles Laughton is magnificent. The direction is great. The ending a fantastic twist.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago