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Warner Bros. Pictures Tough Guys Collection in July - Artwork added

Warner Home Video have announced the Region 1 DVD release of Warner Bros. Pictures Tough Guys Collection for 18th July 2006. The follow up to their successful Gangster Collection, this Tough Guys Collection includes six new crime genre classics all making their DVD debuts. The titles include Bullets or Ballots, Each Dawn I Die, ‘G’ Men, San Quentin, A Slight Case of Murder and City for Conquest with the original prologue intact for the first time since the film was released.

The collection will be available for $59.92 SRP. Each title is also available separately for $19.97 SRP.

All six titles have been fully restored and digitally remastered with special features including historian commentaries and new making-of featurettes. Each disc also contains an exclusive “Warner Night at the Movies” segment which recreates moviegoer attractions such as newsreels, comedy shorts, cartoons and trailers from the years each film was released.

Major Hollywood studios in the ‘30s and ‘40s were each known for their distinctive styles (MGM for its musicals; Universal for its horror films, etc.). Warner Bros. was best known for firmly establishing the genre of gangster films, which were also noted for their socially conscious themes as well as their simple visual look (low key lighting and sparse sets).

Details of films in the Tough Guys Collection

Bullets or Ballots (1936)
When Warner Bros.’ Depression-era gangster movies began to draw protests, the studio reinvigorated the genre with stories emphasizing law enforcers instead of lawbreakers. The swift, sturdy Bullets or Ballots reflects that, with Edward G. Robinson (as Blake) siding with the good guys for the first time in a gangland saga. Humphrey Bogart plays the short-fused Fenner. And Joan Blondell and Louise Beavers, in an unusual story element for the times, are thriving numbers operators whose grift is usurped by the mob.

DVD special features include:
  • Warner Night at the Movies 1936 short subjects gallery:
    • Vintage newsreel
    • Vintage Short George Hall and His Orchestra
    • Classic cartoon I’m a Big Shot Now
    • Theatrical Trailer The Charge of the Light Brigade
  • New featurette Gangsters: The Immigrant’s Hero
  • Commentary by Dana Polan
  • How I Play Golf by Bobby Jones No. 10: Trouble Shots
  • Breakdowns of 1936 studio blooper reel
  • Audio-only bonus: 4/16/1939 Lux Radio Theater Broadcast with Edward G. Robinson and Humphrey Bogart
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Subtitles: English, Français & Español (feature film only)

Each Dawn I Die (1939)
Framed for manslaughter after he breaks a story about city corruption, reporter Frank Ross is sure he’ll prove his innocence and walk out of prison a free man. But that’s not how the system works at Rocky Point Penitentiary. There cellblock guards are vicious, the jute-mill labor is endless and the powers Ross fought on the outside conspire to keep him in. Two of the screen’s famed tough guys star in this prison movie that casts a reform-minded eye on the brutalizing effects of life in the slammer. James Cagney “hits a white-hot peak as [Ross,] the embittered, stir-crazy fall guy” (Leonard Maltin’s Movie Guide). And George Raft (Cagney’s friend since their vaudeville days) portrays racketeer hood Stacey, who may hold the key to springing Ross.

DVD special features include:
  • Warner Night at the Movies 1939 short subjects gallery:
    • Documentary Short A Day at Santa Anita
    • Oscar-Nominated classic cartoon Detouring America
    • Theatrical Trailer Wings of the Navy
  • New featurette Stool Pigeons and Pine Overcoats: The Language of Gangster Films
  • Commentary by film historian Haden Guest
  • Breakdowns of 1939: studio blooper reel
  • Bonus cartoon Each Dawn I Crow
  • 3/22/43 Lux Radio Theater Broadcast
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Subtitles: English, Français & Español (feature film only)

‘G’ Men (1935)
In 1931, James Cagney helped jump-start the gangster genre as “The Public Enemy.” In 1935, he wages on-screen war against the nation’s public enemies. Outcries against movies that glorified underworld criminals put Cagney on the side of the law in ‘G’ Men. Emphasis may have changed but elements are the same. ‘G’ Men builds to a fury of bold escapes, siren-wailing pursuits and frenzied shootouts. Here, a punchy hot-off-the-presses account of the pursuit and capture of John Dillinger provides the story inspiration as tough-guy Cagney gives it to ’em good in a movie that’s “fast, gutsy, as simplistic and powerful as a tabloid headline”.

DVD special features include:
  • Warner Night at the Movies 1935 short subjects gallery:
    • Comedy short The Old Grey Mayor starring Bob Hope
    • Classic cartoon Buddy the Gee Man
    • Theatrical Trailer Devil Dogs of the Air
  • New featurette Morality and the Code: A How-to Manual for Hollywood
  • Commentary by Richard Jewell
  • How I Play Golf by Bobby Jones No. 11: Practice Shots
  • Things You Never See on the Screen: Breakdowns of 1935 studio blooper reel
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Subtitles: English, Français & Español (feature film only)

San Quentin (1937)
Do the crime, do the time. But what happens during the long years spent behind the walls of San Quentin? The penitentiary’s new yard captain wants to make those years a time of rehabilitation rather than punishment. But not everyone’s buying it. Humphrey Bogart portrays Red, continuing his climb to stardom in this brisk film that’s one of a string of Depression-era works combining gangster-movie elements with a Big House setting. Studio mainstay Pat O’Brien plays Steve Jameson, whose carrot-and-stick reforms begin to change Red’s thinking. An inmates’ strike and a scripture-quoting con who swipes a rifle are among the troubles Jameson faces. And Red is another as he reverts to his old ways and makes a violent break for freedom.

DVD special features include:
  • Warner Night at the Movies 1937 short subjects gallery:
    • Vintage newsreel
    • Oscar-nominated Broadway Brevity short The Man Without a Country
    • Classic Cartoon Porky’s Double Trouble
    • Kid Galahad Theatrical Trailer
  • New featurette Welcome to the Big House
  • Commentary by Patricia King Hanson
  • Breakdowns of 1937 studio blooper reel
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Subtitles: English, Français & Español (feature film only)

A Slight Case of Murder (1937)
Prohibition’s ban on booze is over, and that means bootlegger Remy Marco must make some changes. Don’t call his beer-peddling enterprise a racket. It’s now a business. Employees are no longer lugs or palookas, they’re associates. And don’t refer to Marco as da boss. Use sir. He’s gone legit, see? Edward G. Robinson plays Marco, spoofing his Little Caesar persona in a comedy spree based on Damon Runyon and Howard Lindsay’s Broadway play. Lloyd Bacon, director of Robinson’s gangster sendups Brother Orchid and Larceny, Inc., guides with screwball flair as corpses, creditors, the swellest of swells and more mayhem descend on Marco.

DVD special features include:
  • Warner Night at the Movies 1938 short subjects gallery:
    • Vintage newsreel
    • Oscar-nominated drama short Declaration of Independence
    • Classic cartoon The Night Watchman
    • The Dawn Patrol Theatrical Trailer
  • New featurette Prohibition Opens the Floodgates
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Subtitles: English, Français & Español (feature film only)

City for Conquest (1940)
This heart-tugging melodrama has been restored to its original running time, with its prologue intact for the very first time since the original 1940 theatrical release. Subsequent theatrical reissues, TV and home video versions have always been edited.
The movie’s story involves ex-Golden Gloves fighter Danny Kenny, who has it all worked out. He’ll turn pro to bankroll his brother’s dream of writing a symphonic paean to the teeming city where they both live: New York. But life pulls the sidewalk out from under Danny when he’s blinded during a brutal 15-round welterweight title bout. James Cagney stars as Danny, along with co-stars Ann Sheridan, Anthony Quinn, film-debuting Arthur Kennedy and, in a rare acting turn before his directing career, Elia Kazan.

DVD special features include:
  • Warner Night at the Movies 1940 short subjects gallery:
    • Vintage Newsreel
    • Oscar-Nominated short Service with the Colors
    • Classic cartoon Stage Fright
    • Theatrical Trailer The Fighting 69th
  • New featurette Molls and Dolls: The Women of Gangster Films
  • Breakdowns of 1940 studio blooper reel
  • Audio-only bonus: 2/9/1942 Lux Radio Theater Broadcast
  • Commentary by Richard Schickel
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Subtitles: English, Français & Español (feature film only)

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