Movie Article

From the Director's Chair: George Stevens

EW review the movies of director George Stevens

Of all the classic adventure-comedies, Gunga Din is the greatest. Was Cary Grant, the loud Cockney in a trio of troops battling the Thuggee ''murder cult'' in India, ever goofier or more swashbuckling? Was an action finale ever more heartrending than when Din, the meek water boy (Sam Jaffe), blows his dying breaths into a bugle to warn off the cavalry? The DVD is one of four titles being released by Warner as a tribute to George Stevens, a man of all genres whose rep was raised by two docs helmed by his son George Jr.: the doting George Stevens: A Filmmaker's Journey and George Stevens: D-Day to Berlin, which contains Stevens'shocking color footage from the Dachau concentration camp. The Giant director was changed by his WWII experience, illustrated in his capital-Iimportant postwar films, particularly the interminable I Remember Mama, featuring Irene Dunne as a staunch floor-scrubbing homemaker and a bevy of bad Sven-and-Ollie Norwegian accents (''If dey laff at me, I lump in da bay!'').

EXTRAS On Din, a making-of featurette, a commentary track, and a Porky Pig cartoon; on Mama, an intro by George Jr.

Din: A
Journey: B
Berlin: B+
Mama: C

Originally posted Dec 13, 2004 Published in issue #797 Dec 17, 2004 Order article reprints