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Stuart Rosenberg
Paul Newman, Lauren Bacall, Joanne Woodward, Tony Franciosa
Tracy Keenan Wynn, Lorenzo Semple Jr., Walter Hill
A big-city private detective travels to the Deep South to help out an old girlfriend who worrie that her husband will find out that she is cheating on him.
Rated PG.

Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
English DTS-HD MA Monaural
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 108 min.
Price: $21.99
Release Date: 2/27/2018

• Vintage Featurette
• Trailer


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The Drowning Pool [Blu-Ray] (1975)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (March 11, 2018)

Nine years after Harper became a hit, the title character returns in 1975ís The Drowning Pool. LA-based private detective Lew Harper (Paul Newman) travels to Louisiana when he hears from an old flame.

Harperís former girlfriend Iris Devereaux (Joanne Woodward) married a wealthy oil baron Ė and eventually cheated on him. Concerned that her husband will discover her indiscretions, Iris hires Harper to help her keep the peace, and he finds himself embroiled in a mix of extracurricular concerns.

Some sequels essentially just ďflipĒ the plot of the original, and on the surface, that seems to be the case here. In Harper, a wealthy woman hires our lead to find her adulterous husband. In Pool, a wealthy woman hires our lead to hide her own adulterous behavior.

Despite those similarities, Pool manages to become its own entity, mainly via Newmanís performance. In the 1966 flick, Harper offered a more aggressive tone, whereas Pool makes him more of a wily character with quick comebacks.

I prefer the Pool version, mainly because Newmanís charm comes through better. Harper lacked much intelligence or wit in the first film, whereas he seems smarter and better suited for his job in the sequel.

Neither movie emphasizes plot, as like Harper, Pool mostly sends Harper around on ďerrandsĒ. These expeditions act as an excuse for Harper to meet different people and enter various circumstances, so donít expect a strong story. Pool a reasonably entertaining affair. No one will view this as a great thriller, but it manages a decent level of entertainment because its star keeps us engaged.

The Disc Grades: Picture A-/ Audio B/ Bonus D+

The Drowning Pool appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.40:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. I felt pleased with this appealing transfer.

Sharpness appeared consistently good. Next to no softness materialized, so the majority of the movie showed good clarity and delineation.

Jagged edges and shimmering seemed non-existent, and edge haloes failed to mar the presentation. Grain remained appropriate, and I noticed no signs of specks, marks or source flaws.

Colors went with a natural palette that came across well. The interior shots were appropriately subdued, but exteriors showed vivid tones. Across the board, colors looked clean and concise.

Blacks were appropriately dark and dense, while shadows seemed good. This became a strong image.

The DTS-HD MA monaural soundtrack of Pool seemed perfectly fine, and speech played the most important role. Dialogue showed reasonably natural tones and avoided much edginess or other issues.

Effects came from environmental elements, and they were clear and reasonably accurate. Music showed appropriate delineation and range as well. Ultimately, the audio worked well for this movie.

In addition to the filmís trailer, we find a vintage featurette. It goes for 10 minutes, 46 seconds and offers comments from novelist Ross Macdonald.

The featurette gives us some notes about story/characters as well as locations. Itís not an especially informative piece, but itís worth a look for some of the behind the scenes footage.

Actors donít get much more charming than Paul Newman, and his aplomb becomes the main attraction of The Drowning Pool. While the rest of the movie lacks a lot of intrigue or real development, Newmanís turn as the lead makes it fun. The Blu-ray boasts excellent visuals as well as more than acceptable audio but it includes only minor supplements. This isnít a great film but it manages reasonable entertainment.

Viewer Film Ratings: 3 Stars Number of Votes: 1
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