Sunday, May 14, 2006

DVD Review: Call Northside 777

Welcome back!

So far, most of my DVD reviews have been rather ho-hum...the movies themselves have been good for the most part, but nothing to get overly excited about either. I would definitely recommend renting them at the least.

Call Northside 777 (James Stewart) falls into the "wow - that was good!" category. Based on a true story, Call Northside 777 opens with a narrator explaining life in Chicago in 1932. Lots of underworld violence has resulted in many policemen being killed in the line of duty. We see one such murder of a policeman take place in a deli which was a front for a speakeasy.

Fast forward 11 years -- the editor of a Chicago newspaper sees a small personal ad that catches his attention. It's offering a $5000 reward for any information regarding the murdered policeman from the film's opening scene. The editor assigns one of his reporters (James Stewart) to check out the story behind the ad. The ad leads to a middle-aged scrub woman, Tillie Wiecek, at a Chicago building. There, Stewart finds out that Tillie has worked for the past 11 years to save for the $5000 reward. Her son was imprisoned for the policeman's murder and she believes her son is innocent. Stewart dashes her hopes that the money will lead to anything substantial.

Ready to kill the story,  Stewart returns to his editor, who has other ideas. Instead of killing the story, he encourages Stewart to follow it some more. Without spoiling too much, Stewart goes on to help the jailed man and possibly set him free -- I won't say if he succeeds, so that you will rent it yourself and find out!

I really enjoyed the film - it was interesting to follow the twists and turns to the final resolution. And since it's based on a  true story, it was even more interesting. It's probably slow by current day standards, but I didn't think so. Stewart gives a wonderful performance as do several of the other peformers - a few of which you may know if you watched a lot of '70s TV. :)

I'll give this 4 of 5 stars!

Have you seen Call Northside 777? Do you enjoy "based on a true story" films? Post your comments and let us know!

Till next time!

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