No doubt inspired by The Warner Archive, Universal has kicked off their Vault Series of DVD-R releases — released exclusively through Amazon — of stuff they figure nobody but us geeks and obsessives will care anything about.
As you know, Universal-International put out a slew of Westerns in the 50s. They weren’t big-budget affairs, but some of them are excellent (Pillars Of The Sky, No Name On The Bullet, The Naked Dawn). Some are quite good (Cattle Drive). And the rest — well, I always liked ’em (The Star In The Dust).
However, I’m sorry to report that this first batch is Westerns-less. Not a one! (Well, there’s Shoot Out, but it’s from 1971, and I don’t know if I’d count the wonderful Ruggles Of Red Gap.)
The 1954 Dragnet feature is certainly nice to have, I’ve been wanting that one for years, and The Black Shield Of Farnsworth is really cool, but what about one of the six Joel McCrea U-I Westerns? An Audie Murphy picture? Or since they leaned heavy on Tony Curtis, how about Rudolph Maté’s The Rawhide Years (1955)?
The bulk of first string of titles:
40 Pounds Of Trouble (1962)
Black Shield Of Farnsworth (1954)
Blue Collar (1978)
The Chalk Garden (1964)
Death Takes A Holiday (1934)
House Of Seven Gables (1940)
Kitten With A Whip (1964)
List Of Adrian Messenger (1963)
The Perfect Furlough (1958)
Ruggles Of Red Gap (1933)
Shoot Out (1971)
Spawn Of The North (1938)