Jeff Smith 2 p.m., Dec. 18
**L@@K** RARE VINTAGE "CARPETBAGGERS" VHS CHEAP $148.90
The Carpetbaggers is a great way to kill 150 minutes on a lazy Sunday afternoon. Based on a cheezeball potboiler by Harold Robbins, George Peppard has never been better than as a ruthless, spoiled rotten tycoon patterned after Howard Hughes.
It was Alan Ladd's last film (GOOD!) and the climactic fistfight between the Peppard stunt double and Ladd's stand-in is one of the funniest ever filmed. Director Eddie Dmytryk even had the good sense to speed up the picture and the sound. There are moments where you'd swear Dmytryk was channeling Jules White and the Stooges.
While doing top secret government research on YouTube, I ran across the original trailer.
The often imitated, rainbow sherbert hued key art tickled me -- what the hell is boxing great (and former San Diegan) Archie Moore doing in this company? -- so I posted it as my Facebook cover photo. Friend Jon Oye quickly pointed out that the DVD was currently going for $82.99 on Amazon.
Is The Carpetbaggers out of print? Did Paramount pull all DVD copies to help pave the way for an upcoming Blu-ray edition, I hope, I hope? Upon closer examination, I unearthed what is easily a Carpetbaggers' completest's dream come true, a deluxe, 1985 VHS pressing from The Joan Collins Video Collection. (Fortunately, Ms. Collins does not appear in the film.)
Can you believe there's only one left in stock? With an asking price of $148.90, that averages out to a buck a crease, and I'm talking about Ms. Collins' derriere, not the VHS tape.
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