"This Signature Series effectively brings together some stellar examples of the suave, urbane sophistication and light-hearted good humor that was Cary Grant. However, the absence of "Bringing Up Baby" and "Dream Wife" from this DVD collection is - quite simply - inexcusable! Having said that, this box set is comprised of 3 hilarious comedies (Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House, My Favorite Wife, The Bachelor and the Bobby-soxer), one highly enjoyable musical (Night & Day) and one thrilling WWII drama (Destination Tokyo). "Mr. Blandings" is a sort of 1940s rendition of "The Money Pit" - about a couple desperately trying to build their dream house despite overwhelmingly hilarious adversity. It co-stars Melvyn Douglas and Myrna Loy. "My Favorite Wife" is the most outstanding of the three comedies. It stars Irene Dunne (who previously costarred with Grant in "The Awful Truth"), as Grant's wife - presumed dead at the start of the film, but resurfacing shortly thereafter to throw a monkey wrench into Grant's second marriage to Gail Patrick. "The Bachelor and The Bobby-soxer" is a quaint romantic triangle between Grant, Shirley Temple and Myrna Loy. He's a playboy writer unwillingly and romantically tied to a 17-year-old schoolgirl (Temple) but more interested in her older sister (Loy). "Night & Day" is the outstanding and tuneful musical loosely based on the life of composer, Cole Porter. Actually, there's no hint of Porter's real life in it at all, other than Grant assigned to play the flamboyantly homosexual real-life man as a playfully womanizing heterosexual. Faux reality aside, the film contains wonderful production numbers to some wonderful tunes including "You're The Top" sung by Grant and "My Heart Belongs to Daddy", a Mary Martin specialty that stops the show. "Destination Tokyo" is a stark shift from all the lighthearted playfulness discussed thus far. Grant is the captain of a submarine during WWII, sent to gather information for the coming Doolittle Raid. John Garfield is magnificent as the torpedo man with a bitter grudge against the Axis powers. A tad weighty on war time propaganda, this film is nevertheless, one of a handful of truly outstanding films based upon reality.
THE TRANSFERS: All of these films have been given an upgraded treatment by Warner Brothers and the clean up most definitely shows - most noticeably on "My Favorite Wife" which previously has looked very poor on home video formats. Overall, the gray scale on each of these films (with the exception of "Night & Day" which is in Technicolor) is wonderfully balanced with clean whites and solid blacks. There's very little in the way of age related artifacts for a collection of digital transfers that will surely NOT disappoint. There is some pixelization and edge enhancement present on "Destination Tokyo" as well as considerable film grain present in several rear projection shots from the same film, but these are to be expected in the quality of films of this vintage. Of special note: the Technicolor transfer on "Night And Day" suffers from periodic mis-registration that creates distracting halos or out of focus image quality from time to time. At its best the color is rich and well balanced. The audio is mono for all the titles but very nicely balanced. Of special merit: the songs in "Night And Day" are wonderfully spatial.
EXTRAS: It is somewhat disappointing that the Cary Grant Bio currently airing on Turner Classic movies as part of their month long tribute has not been included as part of this box set. We get only scant features here - some audio commentaries - resourceful if brief - some theatrical trailers and some publicity stills. Perhaps Warner is waiting to do a Cary Grant Vol. II. We'll see.
BOTTOM LINE: This is definitely one to add to your collection. Even if the transfers had not been so beautifully rendered - owning a bit of that old Cary Grant magic is never a waste of money."
Great Value Pack
Serrano | Florida | 09/14/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This 5 Pack DVDs would cost around $80 if bought separately. They are all great movies with good image and sound quality. Some extras include the movies radio shows, some 12 Grant Trailers, a couple of nice cartoons and a couple of shorts, one of them pretty old and interesting. For the price it's a Great Deal"
More great Grant
C. A. Luster | Burke, VA USA | 05/13/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"As one review indicated maybe this isn't a Signature Cary Grant set. However; these movies were not previously available on DVD so I am happy to get them. I had some of these on VHS as well as "Bringing Up Baby", which I hope will be on DVD soon. These are all great Grant movies from the 1940s. I especially like Mr. Blandings Builds his Dreamhouse with Myrna Loy, Destination Tokyo with John Garfiled, and The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer with Myrna Loy and Shirley Temple. Two of any of these movies are worth the price of the set alone, so I suggest you grab it while you can. Some of these sets tend to go out of print from time to time. A Marx Brothers DVD set I bought last year is no longer available. If you enjoy comedies you will especially appreciate this set since most of them are comedies. "Destination Tokyo" is a great WWII submarine drama."
Timeless Cary Grant
Christopher C | USA | 01/08/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"A very good collection of Grant films. 3 are five star films. Mr. Blandings, The Bachelor, and My Favorite Wife are bonafide classics and three of the more memorable Grant comedies. That being said, Destination Tokyo and Night and Day are decent fims. They are definitely worth watching if you are a fan of classic cinema or of Cary Grant but neither are his finest and should not be in a set entitled "Cary Grant Signature Collection". Three 5 star films and two 3 star films."
Can't Go Wrong.....It's Cary Grant
William L. Newman | Mesquite, Tx United States | 01/03/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I got this set a couple of months ago. All of the movies are clean and easy to watch over and over again. Each movie comes in a seperate case and all five go into a cardboard holder. I like this much better than the Cary Grant: Screen Legend Collection which I have also.(Those movies are in a simple cardboard case, not individual cases.) Anyone who likes Mr. Grant will like this collection. PERIOD"