Blu-ray, DVD Release: Ace in the Hole

Blu-ray & DVD Release Date: May 4, 2014
Price: Blu-ray/DVD Combo $39.95
Studio: Criterion

Ace in the Hole movie scene

Kirk Douglas gets the scoop in Ace in the Hole.

Billy Wilder’s (Sabrina) 1951 film noir drama Ace in the Hole is one of the most scathing indictments of American culture ever produced by a Hollywood filmmaker.

Kirk Douglas (Paths of Glory) gives the fiercest performance of his career as Chuck Tatum, an amoral newspaper reporter who washes up in dead-end Albuquerque, happens upon the scoop of a lifetime, and will do anything to keep getting the lurid headlines.

Also starring Jan Sterling and Bob Arthur, Wilder’s follow-up to his ominously alluring Sunset Boulevard is an even darker vision, a no-holds-barred exposé of the American media’s appetite for sensation that has gotten only more relevant with time.

Criterion’s Blu-ray/DVD Combo edition of the movie contains the following features, the bulk of them ported over from Criterion’s previously released DVD edition:

• Restored 4K digital transfer, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
• Audio commentary by film scholar Neil Sinyard
• Portrait of a “60% Perfect Man: Billy Wilder, a 1980 documentary featuring interviews with Wilder by film critic Michel Ciment
• Interview with actor Kirk Douglas from 1984
• Excerpts from a 1986 appearance by Wilder at the American Film Institute
• Excerpts from an audio interview with Wilder’s coscreenwriter Walter Newman
• Video afterword by filmmaker Spike Lee
• Stills gallery
• Trailer
• One Blu-ray and two DVDs, with all content available in both formats
• Essays by critic Molly Haskell and filmmaker Guy Maddin


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About Laurence

Founder and editor Laurence Lerman saw Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest when he was 13 years old and that’s all it took. He has been writing about film and video for more than a quarter of a century for magazines, anthologies, websites and most recently, Video Business magazine, where he served as the Reviews Editor for 15 years.