DVD Movie Guide @ dvdmg.com Awards & Recommendations at Amazon.com.
Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main


William Nigh
Don Castle, Elyse Knox, Regis Toomey
Writing Credits:
Steve Fisher

A dancer is pinned for murder after his shoe prints are found at the scene of the crime, so his wife follows the trail of clues to the genuine killer.

Rated NR.

Aspect Ratio: 1.37:1
English DTS-HD MA Monaural
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 71 min.
Price: $21.99
Release Date: 7/13/2021

The Symphony Murder Mystery Short
Holiday for Shoestrings Short


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


I Wouldn't Be In Your Shoes [Blu-Ray] (1948)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (July 8, 2021)

On the back of the Blu-ray for 1948’s I Wouldn’t Be In Your Shoes, Warner Archives promises us “a fascinating film noir gem ripe for rediscovery!” We’ll see if the movie merits that description.

Married couple Tom (Don Castle) and Ann Quinn (Elyse Knox) struggle to make ends meet as a dance team, though she tends to act as the main breadwinner via lessons she gives to sad sacks really there for a little female companionship. One night, Tom tosses his shoes out the window to quiet noisy alley cats.

Unfortunately for Tom, someone uses these shoes to implicate him in the murder of a local man. Ann works to prove his innocence before the authorities execute him.

Usually when an old, largely forgotten movie gets a Blu-ray release, it occurs because someone in the cast and/or crew boasts fame. You’ll find no “names” among the actors or primary behind the camera talent with Shoes, though.

Indeed, producer Walter Mirisch offers the only well-known figure we find here. Later an Oscar-winner for 1967’s In the Heat of the Night and also a figure behind classics like The Magnificent Seven, Shoes acted as Mirisch’s second big screen credit.

That gives Shoes some historical context. Still, it really does appear as forgotten as the Blu-ray’s case implies.

That said, some viewers may encounter a sense of déjà vu as they watch Shoes - or at least I did. The plot of Shoes bears a more than minor resemblance to the story of 1946’s Black Angel.

Both films involve men unjustly accused of murder, and both focus on their wives’ attempts to exonerate them. Probably not coincidentally, both also come from works written by Cornell Woolrich.

Did Woolrich always write tales like this? Given that my only knowledge of his efforts comes from movies that adapt his text, I can’t say.

However, all three of the Woolrich adapations I’ve seen - Shoes, Angel and 1944’s Phantom Lady - deal with men accused of murders they didn’t commit. That sure makes Woolrich look like a one-trick plotter.

Angel left me cold, but Lady worked pretty well. This left me curious to see if Shoes would break the tie as a good Woolrich adaptation or as a dud.

Unfortunately, Shoes leans much closer to stinker than winner. In particular, the movie suffers because it comes with unsympathetic leads who act like morons.

From the minute we meet Tom, he comes across like a jealous, insecure hot head. Ann fares little better, as she soon leaves the impression of a conniving, greedy woman who feels happy to profit from the misfortune of others.

Of course, movies don’t need likable or sympathetic characters to work, but this one does. So much of the story revolves around the attempts to establish Tom’s innocence that we need to invest in his fate.

We don’t. While we may not wish he’d die, we just don’t care much about him or Ann, so the tale’s potential emotional impact fails to materialize.

In addition, Tom and Ann act like such dopes along the way that it becomes even more difficult to invest in their journey. The film invents a contrived, stupid reason for them to keep some found money that adds to the evidence against Tom, and this greed again makes them unsympathetic.

At least Shoes runs a mere 71 minutes, so it doesn’t waste too much of our time. Nonetheless, it delivers a flawed noir effort.

The Disc Grades: Picture B+/ Audio B-/ Bonus C-

I Wouldn’t Be In Your Shoes appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.37:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a pleasing presentation.

Although some minor softness interfered with a few wide shots, I thought that most of the film seemed well-defined. Despite a few slightly soft shots, the movie usually came across with nice delineation.

Moiré effects and jagged edges remained absent, and I saw no edge haloes or digital noise reduction. Print flaws failed to materialize.

Black levels appeared deep and rich, with some fine contrast throughout the film. I also found shadow detail to seem nicely clear and not too heavy. I felt happy with this strong transfer.

Though not as impressive, the movie’s DTS-HD MA monaural audio held up well. Dialogue was mildly thin but appeared relatively clear and distinct, with no edginess or concerns related to intelligibility.

Effects were similarly crisp and accurate and they showed little distortion. The music sounded smooth and appropriately bright, so whole it lacked much dynamic range, it showed acceptable clarity. For a film from 1948, this seemed like a successful soundtrack.

The disc includes two shorts: 1932’s The Symphony Murder Mystery (21:27) and 1946’s Holiday for Shoestrings (7:22). The former offers a live action affair in which some deaths occur in a concert hall. It seems primitive and not especially memorable but offers a nugget from the early talkie days.

As for Holiday, it shows elves who complete tasks for a sick, overworked cobbler. Directed by Friz Freleng, it proves more cute than funny, but it comes with some clever moments.

Those involved with I Wouldn’t Be In Your Shoes invested all their creativity in the punning title. The rest of the movie comes with unlikable, stupid characters and too many plot contrivances. The Blu-ray brings positive picture and audio as well as minor bonus materials. This winds up as a forgettable noir flick.

Viewer Film Ratings: 1 Stars Number of Votes: 1
0 3:
View Averages for all rated titles.

Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main