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Director: Alfred Hitchcock     Starring: Tallulah Bankhead
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Lifeboat (special Edition) DVD 1 of 1

Learn more about Lifeboat (special Edition):

Format: DVD
Sku: 40721470
UPC: 024543172260
UPC 14: 00024543172260
Rating: NR
See more in Drama
After their ship is sunk in the Atlantic by Germans, eight people are stranded in a lifeboat, among them a glamorous journalist (Tallulah Bankhead), a tough seaman (John Hodiak), a nurse (Mary Anderson) and an injured sailor (William Bendix). Their problems are further compounded when they pick up a ninth passenger - the Nazi captain from the U-boat that torpedoed them. With its powerful interplay of suspense and emotion, this legendary classic is a microcosm of humanity, revealing the subtleties of man's strengths and frailties under extraordinary duress.

"One of Hitchcock's best...  John Esther, Pasadena Weekly
"Proof that Hitchcock can make any situation fascinating.  Mike Pinsky, Daily-Reviews
"Absorbing... brilliantly executed!  The Hollywood Reporter

Editor's Note
Based on a story by John Steinbeck, LIFEBOAT tells of the desperate struggle for survival of a group of people whose boat was torpedoed by a German U-boat during the Second World War. In this gripping character study about eight diverse survivors, tensions mount after a Nazi is brought aboard. LIFEBOAT is an unusual yet thrilling film from Alfred Hitchcock.


Video Features DVD, Black & White, Pan and Scan (TV Format), Dolby Digital Stereo, English, Spanish Subtitled

Technical Info

Release Information
Video Mfg Name Studio: Foxvideo
Video Release Date Release Date: 9/5/2006
Video Play Time Running Time: 96 minutes
Video Release Year Original Release Date: 1944
Video CategoryId Catalog ID: 2227226
Video UPC UPC: 00024543172260
Video Number of Discs Number of Discs: 1

Audio & Video
Video Original Language Original Language: English
Video Audio Spec Available Audio Tracks: English
Video Subtitle Available Subtitles: English, Spanish
Video Color Spec Video: B&W

Aspect Ratio
Video Aspect Ratio Standard  1.33:1 [4:3]

Cast & Crew

Video Cast Info Mary Anderson
Video Cast Info Tallulah Bankhead
Video Cast Info Walter Slezak
Video Cast Info William Bendix
Video Cast Info Alfred Hitchcock - Director
Video Cast Info Dorothy Spencer - Editor
Video Cast Info Glen MacWilliams - Cinematographer
Video Cast Info Hugo Friedhofer - Original Music By
Video Cast Info Jo Swerling, et. al. - Writer
Video Cast Info John Steinbeck - Story By
Video Cast Info Kenneth Macgowan - Producer
Plot Summary
LIFEBOAT is an intense thriller crafted around the psychological drama produced when eight unlikely companions are thrown together by drastic circumstance. The exceptional performances of its ensemble cast make it a classic, one credited with reviving Tallulah Bankhead's career. After a German U-boat torpedoes their ship, several survivors find themselves together in a lifeboat. Each is of a distinctly different background: Tallulah Bankhead's character, the radiant Constance Porter, is a famed fashion writer; others include tycoon Charles Rittenhouse (Henry Hull), marxist seaman John Kovac (John Hodiak), Stanley Garret (Hume Cronyn), a radio operator, a wounded furnace stoker, a nurse, a grieving mother, and a porter. The group is joined by the commander of the German U-boat (Walter Slezak), which was itself sunk in the exchange. Choosing to take him aboard as a gesture of humanity, and for the sake of his seafaring skills, proves to be a fateful decision. Production was done almost entirely in studio, using a range of specialized water sets and props to allow Hitchcock to achieve the camera angles he wanted while employing rear-projected seascapes shot off the coast of Florida.


Oscar (1945)
   Video Award Name Alfred Hitchcock, Nominee, Best Director
   Video Award Name John Steinbeck, Nominee, Best Writing, Original Story
   Video Award Name Glen MacWilliams, Nominee, Best Cinematography, Black-and-White

Professional Reviews

Entertainment Weekly
"...Hitchcock broke the champagne bottle on the [liferaft] subgenre....Carries a vigilante chill..." -- Rating: B 01/26/1996 pp.66-8

4 stars out of 4 -- "LIFEBOAT convinces us completely of its sincerity and urgency." 11/01/2005 p.112-116

Entertainment Weekly
"Based on a Steinbeck novella, the film is both an allegory about the need for unity to combat Nazism and a technological marvel..." -- Grade: B 10/21/2005 p.61

5 stars out of 5 -- "[P]ure cinema, with every shot finding a different angle." 04/01/2006 p.144

Total Film
4 stars out of 5 -- "[I]t's well worth a gander for Hitch's inventiveness in devising varied camera angles in his confined space..." 06/01/2012

Sight and Sound
"[I]t holds up remarkably. Inventive, suspenseful and witty, it's also fascinating as Hitchcock's first attempt to shoot almost entirely on a single-set..." 05/01/2012

Product Attributes

Product attributeActor:   Bankhead,Tallulah
Product attributeLabel:   Fox Home Entertainment
Product attributeVideo Format:   DVD
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