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TCM Greatest Classic Legends Film Collection: Paul Newman [4 Discs] [DVD]

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Overview

Special Features

  • Somebody Up There Likes Me features:
  • Commentary by Paul Newman, Robert Loggia, director Robert Wise, Martin Scorsese and Richard Schickel
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Harper features:
  • Commentary by screenwriter William Goldman
  • Introduction by TCM host Robert Osborne
  • Cool Hand Luke features:
  • Commentary by historian/Newman biographer Eric Lax
  • Documentary a natural-born world-shaker: making Cool Hand Luke
  • The Mackintosh Man features:
  • Featurette John Huston: the man, the myth, the moviemaker

Synopsis

Cool Hand Luke
Paul Newman was nominated for an Oscar and George Kennedy received one for his work in this allegorical prison drama. Luke Jackson (Paul Newman) is sentenced to a stretch on a southern chain gang after he's arrested for drunkenly decapitating parking meters. While the avowed ambition of the captain (Strother Martin) is for each prisoner to "get their mind right," it soon becomes obvious that Luke is not about to kowtow to anybody. When challenged to a fistfight by fellow inmate Dragline (George Kennedy), Luke simply refuses to give up, even though he's brutally beaten. Luke knows how to win at poker, even with bad cards, by using his smarts and playing it cool. Luke also figures out a way for the men to get their work done in half the usual time, giving them the afternoon off. Finally, when Luke finds out his mother has died, he plots his escape; when he's caught, he simply escapes again. Soon, Luke becomes a symbol of hope and resilience to the other men in the prison camp -- and a symbol of rebelliousness that must be stamped out to the guards and the captain. Along with stellar performances by Newman, Kennedy, and Martin, Cool Hand Luke features a superb supporting cast, including Ralph Waite, Harry Dean Stanton, Dennis Hopper, Wayne Rogers, and Joe Don Baker as members of the chain gang. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

Harper
Screenwriter William Goldman has claimed that Paul Newman agreed to do Harper, the film that established the grateful writer's career, only because he was working unhappily on Lady L. (1965) in Europe, and was looking for something as unlike that film as possible. He stars as Lew Harper, a hip L.A. private dick whose business has gotten so bad that he's re-using his coffee grounds. At the suggestion of his friend, attorney Albert Graves (Arthur Hill), the detective takes on the investigation of the disappearance of the wealthy husband of waspish cripple Elaine Sampson (Lauren Bacall). After finding a photograph of former actress Fay Estabrook (Shelley Winters), Harper locates the alcoholic actress in a bar, plies her with booze, and takes her home to search her apartment while she's unconscious. There he takes a call which leads him to another bar to meet Betty Fraley (Julie Harris), a singer with a heroin problem. To curtail his inquisitive behavior, some large and unpleasant gentleman beat him up outside the saloon. Hoping for sympathy from his soon to be ex-wife (Janet Leigh), who has just filed divorce papers, the weary detective is much more successful than he has any right to expect. ~ Michael Costello, Rovi

The Mackintosh Man
John Huston directed this cold war spy thriller (from a script by Walter Hill) concerning a British agent trying infiltrate the organization of a nefarious communist spy. Paul Newman is Joseph Reardon, a British secret agent commissioned by Mackintosh (Harry Andrews) to impersonate a jewel thief. When the police are tipped off about his diamond robbery, Reardon is arrested and shipped off to a high-security prison. At the prison, he meets a convicted Russian spy and the two are involved in a prison break, arranged by a mysterious group called the Scarperers. After the successful breakout, Reardon finds himself drugged and sent to Ireland. It turns out that the escapade was organized by Mackintosh in the hopes Reardon could infiltrate the Scarperers and gather information on the group's leader, Sir George Wheeler (James Mason), and prove him to be a Russian spy. ~ Paul Brenner, Rovi

Somebody Up There Likes Me
Once you get past the fact that handsome Paul Newman could never pass for plug-ugly boxer Rocky Graziano in real life, you will be able to accept Somebody Up Their Likes Me as one of the more accomplished movie biopics of the 1950s. Based on Graziano's autobiography (co-written with Rowland Barber), the film accurately depicts the teen-aged Rocky as an unregenerate punk, evidently doomed by his slum environment, and his own lousy attitude, to a life of petty crime. Determining that the only way he'll make a living is with his fists, Rocky becomes a boxer, at first willing to participate in a series of fixed fights. Eventually, Rocky develops a conscience and sense of self-respect, no small thanks to his sweetheart (and later wife) Norma (Pier Angeli). The film ends on an optimistic note after Rocky wins a "clean" bout with Tony Zale (playing himself). Training extensively with Graziano prior to and during production, Newman is quite impressive in his first worthwhile film role (this was only his third film, following the execrable The Silver Chalice and the forgettable outing The Rack). The title song in Somebody Up There Likes Me was written by Bronislau Kaper and Sammy Cahn, and performed by Perry Como. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Paul Newman
    Paul Newman - Lucas (Luke) Jackson
  • George Kennedy
    George Kennedy - Dragline
  • J.D. Cannon
    J.D. Cannon - Society Red
  • Image coming soon
    Lou Antonio - Koko
  • Image coming soon
    Robert Drivas - Loudmouth Steve
Product images, including color, may differ from actual product appearance.