Posted in: Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on May 4th, 2002
Fox offers five more Marilyn Monroe classics in Marilyn Monroe – The Diamond Collection Vol. II
Don’t Bother to Knock – “Jed, an airline pilot, (Widmark) is resting in a hotel when he notices Nell (Monroe), a young woman babysitting for a wealthy couple. As Jed gets to know Nell better he realizes that the woman is not as stable as perhaps she should be. A unique thriller featuring a rare dramatic performance from Monroe, illustrating a broader range than most people might …xpect.” – Fox
Let’s Make Love – “A frothy musical comedy that lends an entertaining spin to the classic Cinderella story; in this version, Wall Street billionaire Jean-Marc (Yves Montand) falls for struggling, off-Broadway showgirl Amanda (Marilyn Monroe) who studies geography at night school. When Jean-Marc hears that Amanda is rehearsing a revue in which he is being spoofed, he convinces the producers to allow him to portray himself so he can be near her. Jean-Marc then hires Bing Crosby, Milton Berle, and Gene Kelly (playing themselves) to teach him the tricks of the trade in an effort to impress his sweetheart, in this colorful delight from director George Cukor.” – Fox
Monkey Business – “An absent-minded professor stumbles across the “fountain of youth” when one of his lab chimps accidentally dumps a batch of chemicals into the water cooler. The resulting elixir revives youthful and reckless behavior in the professor, his bored wife and his co-workers.” – Fox
Niagara – “A seemingly naive woman (Marilyn Monroe) honeymooning with her newlywed husband (Joseph Cotten). Her purpose for the trip is soon clear, however, when she begins acting out a plot to murder her beloved. A surprising climax reveals the husband’s ulterior motives as well. This was the first leading role for Monroe who immediately became a major box office draw. The camera follows her seductively through this suspenseful thriller.” – Fox
River of No Return – “Matt Calder and his son rescue Harry Weston and his girlfriend Kay from a raging river. Selfish Harry however, is determined to get to the town where a cache of gold is waiting for him. Thus, Harry promptly runs off with Matt’s steed and pistol, leaving the Calders and Kay vulnerable to the nearby (and inhospitable) Indians — who are closing in fast…” – Fox
Depending on the age of the film, each disc has differnt audio… whether it be Dolby Digital 4.0 or basic Dolby Stereo. None of these discs sound great, but they do sound decent considering their age. The 4.0 audio tracks somewhat fill the soundstage with music, but most all sound comes from teh center and front channels. The dialog is clear, but it is not focused from the center channel very effectively. As for the Stereo tracks, they sound very Mono in nature, but they sound quite clear.
As the multiple “Restoration Comparison’s” show, these films look better then ever. All five of these classics have been totally visually restored, and wether they are presented in 2.35:1 anamorpic widescreen or 1.33:1 fullscreen, they do look wonderful. The blacks are now very sharp, and the colors are much more vibrant then they were origianally. Two of these films are black & white, with three in color, and all five look equally good.
This collection has only one valuable special feature… each disc contains a Restoration Comparison which shows how the image was repaired for this DVD collection. Otehr then that, the only other features are theatrical trailers and still galleries.
If you enjoy classic films, and like to oogle at Marilyn Monroe, you cannot go wrong with this DVD collection. The films do not sound particularily good, but they look great. Features are lacking, but at least the restoration comparison’s are valuable. All-in-all, this is a good collection.
Special Features List
- Restoration comparisons
- Stills galleries
- Theatrical trailers