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TCM Greatest Gangster Films Collection :: Edward G. Robinson

by Ed Tapper
EDGE Media Network Contributor
Tuesday Mar 13, 2012
TCM Greatest Gangster Films Collection :: Edward G. Robinson

With thousands of Hollywood films at their disposal, the folks at TCM have become masters at compiling them for home viewing. No sooner is one DVD box released, than another, highlighting a different star or theme, emerges. Running the last bit of mileage out of these venerable warhorses is a bit crass. Yet the films are released in excellent quality, and loaded with extras.

Turner Classic Movies is now issuing three new entries, each containing four films dedicated to a legendary star of the Silver Screen. The DVDs were lifted directly from previous Warner releases, with the same artwork and contents. The discs are stacked on a single spindle one atop the other. This arrangement makes it impossible to access a particular title immediately, or keep the discs free of scratches. The sets are not inexpensive, retailing at $28. each. However, all the featured stars are fabulous, and the films selected for inclusion are worth owning.

The first star to whom TCM pays tribute, in a box subtitled "Best Gangster Films," is Edward G. Robinson. As this diminutive actor with towering histrionic talents never gave a bad screen performance, any four of his films would do nicely. TCM chose the previously released 1933 "Little Giant," a punchy pre-code comedy concerning a wealthy racketeer who retires from the mob to enter high society, only to find more honor amongst thieves than swells. The other comedy is the breezy 1943 bank-job caper "Larceny Inc.," based on a Perelman play. From Robinson's prime come two gritty crime dramas, the 1936 "Bullets or Ballots," and, also with Bogey, the 1937 boxing yarn "Kid Galahad," the latter featuring ingénue Bette Davis as the heroine. Each of the films is accompanied by vintage newsreels, shorts and cartoons which add hours of additional entertainment to this new TCM offering.

TCM Greatest Gangster Films Collection :: Edward G. Robinson


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