A morality tale for the ages, émigré Hollywood director William Dieterle's The Devil and Daniel Webster (aka All That Money Can Buy) combines European expressionism with quintessential Americana. Based on a short story by celebrated author Stephen Vincent Benét, it offers a study in life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, in which patriotism is cast in dramatic conflict with servitude to greed and materialism. Echoing the German legend of Faust, down-on-his-luck farmer Jabez Stone (James Craig) makes an existential pact with the devil seven years of prosperity in return for his soul. When the devil incarnate Mr. Scratch (Walter Huston) comes a-calling, Stone begins to have second thoughts, enlisting famed orator and folk hero Daniel Webster (Edward Arnold) to fight what becomes, for each of them, a case of life and death. The Devil and Daniel Webster was widely lauded on its release Bernard Hermann's score won an Oscar for Best Music, Scoring of a Dramatic Picture, while Huston was nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role and is still regarded as an American classic. The Masters of Cinema Series is proud to present Dieterle's film for the very first time on home video in the UK. The DVD is released on 23 February 2009. -----SPECIAL EDITION including----- ---The director's cut (the film was severely shorn after its original release) ---Optimal digital transfer with restored image and sound ---Subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing ---A lavish 60-page booklet with archival publicity stills; an essay by professor Tony Williams; an article by director William Dieterle; and a celebration of the film by author Stephen Vincent Benét, whose "The Devil and Daniel Webster" short story is reprinted in its entirety
Jabez Stone ist ein hart arbeitender Farmer, der versucht, ein ehrliches Leben zu führen. Doch dann bringt ihn eine Pechsträhne dazu, das Undenkbare zu tun - mit dem Teufel zu handeln. Für sieben Jahre Glück verspricht Stone "Mr. Scratch" seine Seele am Ende der Vertragszeit. Als der Farmer seinen Fehler erkennt, bittet er einen Mann um Hilfe, die ihn retten sollen: den legendären Politiker Daniel Webster.