Judgment At Nuremberg

Judgment At Nuremberg (1961)
MGM Home Entertainment
Cast: Spencer Tracy, Maximilian Schell, Burt Lancaster, Marlene Dietrich, Montgomery Clift
Extras: Interview, Featurettes, Trailer

’Judgment At Nuremberg’ is a film about the war crime trials following World War II in which commanding NAZI officials were held accountable for the atrocities they committed during the Third Reich. Spencer Tracy plays the judge in charge of the tribunal as he has to listen to testimony from both sides and ultimately decide upon what he thinks is right or wrong, good or evil.

The film is marvelously acted with a stellar cast that drive the movie forward. They are dimensional characters with their own flaws and an inner torment that tries to wrestle with the horrors of the past. I found especially Spencer Tracy incredibly impressive when a simply frown pr glimpse of his shows us that his mind is working at its full potential. (On a less serious sidenote, it was also the first time I realized how much rapper Snoop Dogg actually looks like Marlene Dietrich. The same frozen, mean demeanor, the same thin lips, the same cold eyes.)

MGM has prepared a great-looking transfer for this DVD and you will notice only a handful of blemishes where the print shows some age. Other than that, the presentation is marvelously clean, clear and stable and shows no signs of grain at all. Contrast of the black and white is very good also with deep, solid blacks and balanced highlights. No edge-enhancement is evident and the compression is also without flaws.

A few extras have been added to the release, such as a recent conversation between the film’s writer Abby Mann and actor Maximilian Schell. They talk about the making of the movie, the impact it had on their own lives and more.

Also included are two featurettes entitled ’The Value Of A Single Human Being’ and a retrospective featurette about director Stanley Kramer.

I am getting increasingly awed by the low prices at which some studio release incredibly high quality DVDs these days, and MGM’s version of ’Judgment At Nuremberg’ is another such example. You’re getting a 3+ hour movie, beautifully remastered with audio remix and a few extra features for a $14.95 SRP. You just can’t beat that, especially when the movie is as powerful as this one.