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I am sure that Cary Grantís numerous fans were disappointed when the legendary actor decided to quietly retire from the screen in 1966. Perhaps they were even more disappointed that Grantís final starring role was in an inoffensive little comedy entitled WALK, DONíT RUN ($25), which proved pleasant enough, but did not showcase the actors full talents. In the years that followed his retirement, Grantís mystique as a screen legend grew and there were those in the movie business that tried on numerous occasions to cajole him back in front of the cameras. Unfortunately, Grantís resolve was unflappable and WALK, DONíT RUN remained his silver screen swan song.

WALK, DONíT RUN is a rather loose remake of THE MORE THE MERRIER, but this version just happens to be set in Tokyo during the 1964 Olympics. Dealing with a housing shortage during the Olympic games is Sir William Rutland (Grant), who manages to bulldoze his way into an apartment occupied by fellow Brit Christine Easton (Samantha Eggar), despite the fact she had been seeking a female roommate. Also finding his way into the cramped quarters is American architect Steve Davis (Jim Hutton), who will be competing in the games. Of course, the walls seem to close in on this unlikely threesome and sensing a bit of sexual tension between Christine and Steve, Sir William decides to play matchmaker. As I stated before, WALK, DONíT RUN is all very pleasant, but not particularly inspired screen comedy, and were it not for the presence of the always fun to watch Cary Grant and Tokyo locations, there wouldnít be anything to make this film stand out from a TV movie. The cast of WALK, DONíT RUN also includes John Standing, Miiko Taka, Ted Hartley, Ben Astar, George Takei, Teru Shimada and Lois Kiuchi.

Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment has made WALK, DONíT RUN available on DVD in a 2.35:1 wide screen presentation that has been enhanced for playback on 16:9 displays (a full screen version is also provided on a separate layer of the disc, but not reviewed here). This is actually a terrific looking transfer of an older movie, thanks to the good condition of the film elements and the quality of Harry Stradling's fine Technicolor cinematography. The image is reasonably fairly and nicely defined, however some of the close-ups do take advantage of diffusion lenses to enhance the appearance of the older leading man. Colors are fairly vibrant, owing to the fact that the movie was released in IB Technicolor, the reds do tend to standout. Flesh tones are respectable, although they can appear a bit homogenized. All of the hues appear solid and are rendered without noise or smearing. Blacks appear accurate, although they can be lacking in fine detail. Digital compression artifacts are well concealed throughout.

WALK, DONíT RUN comes with a perfectly serviceable Dolby Digital monaural soundtrack. The track sounds as though it has been cleaned up to remove the most glaring signs of background hiss and surface noise, leaving a rather pleasant aural experience. Fidelity is good for the films age and Quincy Jones' music sounds rather nice. Dialogue is always completely intelligible, although postproduction looping is very obvious. No other language tracks have been encoded onto the DVD, although English, French and Japanese subtitles are included. The basic interactive menus allow one access to the standard scene selection and set up features, as well as trailers for WALK, DONíT RUN, IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT and HIS GIRL FRIDAY.

WALK, DONíT RUN provided Cary Grant with a pleasant farewell from the cinema, even though the film didn't showcase the silver screen legend's full comedic talents. Columbia's DVD looks and sounds quite nice, which should more than please movie buffs and the Cary grant fans that will be adding this disc to their collections.



Walk, Don't Run (1966)


DVD reviews are Copyright © 2003 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.



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