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  • Carrie Specht

MGM Releases Spiked with a Few Gems


Finally! Another of the big old time studios has opened up its vaults and has begun issuing old movies previously unavailable. MGM, the renowned song and dance studio no longer exists, but many a film fan has longed to get their hands on some of the company’s classic films. There are no musicals among the latest releases, however there are a few amazing gems to be found among a rather eclectic grab bag of titles.

My favorite among the bunch by far is the 1964 political drama, “The Best Man”. “The Best Man” is a taut political drama that will have you on the edge of your seat as the advantage shifts from one moment to the next in a power struggle over the nomination for President of the United States. The film stars Cliff Robertson and Henry Fonda as the two men posed to be the best man. I was actually shocked that this was on the list. Surely this impressive production would have been previously available, if only on VHS.

And that is the case with many of the films now presented through the MGM Limited Collectors Editions. Terrific films like “The Best Man” that have a stellar cast (Academy Award winners Henry Fonda and Cliff Robertson, along with Edie Adams, Ann Sothern and Kevin McCarthy) may have been available at one time but then for some reason found themselves languishing on a shelf in storage. Other films such as the Joel McCrea B Western, “Fort Massacre” are out for the first time ever.

There are some definite odd balls amidst the loot (“Body Slam”, a 1986 wrestling movie with Dirk Benedict). But I have often found that one man’s garbage is another man’s treasure. And it seems that MGM (or who ever controls them now) has taken that concept into consideration when selecting titles for this collection. It’s not always about the quality, but about the appeal.

I can personally recommend the previously mentioned two titles as well as a Robert Mitchum and Olivia de Havilland film, “Not as a Stranger” (a low budget doctor drama) and an Anthony Quinn Western, “The Man from Del Rio”. Now that these films are available for purchase I look forward to seeing them and other quality titles on NetFlix. Maybe even accessible via streaming. I’m sure it’s only a matter of time.