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THUNDER ON THE HILL: Blu-ray (Universal-International, 1951) Kino Lorber

Claudette Colbert, as compassionate nun, Sister Mary Bonaventure and, Ann Blyth, as a convicted murderess, Valerie Carns discover compassion and common ground in Douglas Sirk’s Thunder on the Hill(1951) – a rather stylishly put together crime/melodrama with an all-star cast, to utilize virtually all the Tyrolean bric-a-brac of Universal’s Hollywood Transylvania backlot facades and free-standing sets, seen in countless horror movies throughout the 1930’s and early 40’s. Thunder on the Hillis an immensely entertaining minor programmer, tricked out in all the finery a studio like Universal could effortlessly afford. In many ways, it sincerely feels like a movie made at the height of the war – its saintly religious precepts, female-centric plot, and slightly syrupy romantic subplot, all hold-overs from the days when a primarily female audience dictated studio output. Thunder on the Hill also has William H. Daniels’ high key-lit cinematography and Hans J. Salter’s orchestral bombast to rec…

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