DVD-Review: When The Lion Roars

There are countless documentaries about film history, but few achieve a sense of wonder like When The Lion Roars, Turner Pictures’ magnificent account of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s history. With the brilliant Patrick Stewart as host and a mountain of interviews, filmclips and a lot of other historic footage, it is a documentary like no other. First shown on Turner Pictures’ cable stations TNT and TCM both in the USA and in Europe, I was very glad when Warner finally released a DVD in 2009, just in time before I decided to rescue my own old VHS recordings. Despite the less than perfect technical quality, owing to the video post-production, this is a wonderful DVD release preserving one of the best documentaries about Hollywood ever made that should be in the collection of ever film enthusiast. This review is based on the original German version from 2009, translated, slightly updated and improved.

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  1. Tank the Hatchet

    Did you hear? Criterion will be realasing “Mad, Mad World” in a 197m version in Feb. 2014!


  2. Yes, read about it a couple of days ago at the HTF, I think I’m going to write that up for a news posting soon. But I think I won’t be able to afford the whole set, $40 is a bit too steep for me. I’m hoping that they’re going to release the DVD version seperately at a lower price, though! (Maybe there’s going to be a cheaper Masters of Cinema version in England from Eureka? But I guess the European rights are tied to MGM-Fox.)

    I know the movie semi-well – I’ve seen it twice from a borrowed DVD and a UK tv recording, and while it’s not my all-time-favourite, I like it well enough that the new DVD would be very interesting.