8.2 C
New York
Thursday, December 3, 2020
Advertisement

Peeping Tom (1960) [UK Release] Blu-ray Review

  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
  • Resolution: 1080p/24
  • Audio Codec: English LPCM 2.0 Mono (48kHz/24-bit)
  • Subtitles: English HOH
  • Region: B (Region-Locked)
  • Classification: 15
  • Discs: 1
  • Studio: Optimum Home Entertainment
  • Blu-ray Release Date: November 22, 2010
  • RRP: £19.99

[amazon-product align=”right” region=”uk” tracking_id=”bluraydefinit-21″]B003YXZHC6[/amazon-product]

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.co.uk

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com

Overall
[Rating:4/5]
The Film
[Rating:5/5]

Video Quality
[Rating:4/5]

Audio Quality
[Rating:4/5]

Supplemental Materials
[Rating:3/5]

Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures

(Screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG  thus are meant as a general representation of the content and do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)

The Film

[Rating:5/5]

Director Michael Powell’s (The Red Shoes; Black Narcissus) controversial 1960 film Peeping Tom had British film critics and censors so riled up upon its release that the film was withdrawn and Powell’s career, was to take a fall from which it would never recover.

Released shortly before Hitchcock’s similarly misunderstood Psycho, Peeping Tom is an eerie triumph of psychotic exploration; a thriller that not only looks into the mind of a psychopath, but explores the tenuous boundary between art and madness. Written by Leo Marks (Guns at Batasi; Twisted Nerve), the protagonist is the young Mark Lewis (Karlheinz Böhm), an aspiring filmmaker who works as a camera hand at a major studio by day, moonlights as a photographer of erotic photographs, and by night stalks young women with his camera so he can kill them and capture the look of fear on their faces.

It is an obsession rooted in his father’s abusive and obsessive study and filming of him as a child, often scaring him and waking him with flashlights from his sleep so he could study the effects of fear on a young child’s nervous system. Now, as a grown man, Charles’ has formed an unhealthy attachment to his own camera, using it as an escape, becoming, in a way, a more violent interpretation of his father who gifted him a camera as a young boy. His inability to relate to people on a normal level is shown in his hopeless relationship with his tenant Helen (Anna Massey). He tries to be normal around her, but in the end, he still cannot keep from his compulsion to go out and find more women to capture in the throes of fear and kill, to put together his documentary.

Powell uses a vivid language of color and shadows to tell the story as well as, what were at the time, some cutting edge special effects. Of course, as with all things, what seemed so shocking then, is timid by today’s standards, but Peeping Tom still has the ability to work its way into your psyche.

Video Quality

[Rating:4/5]

Peeping Tom has gone through a thorough restoration and it appears in a beautiful AVC/MPEG-4 1080p encoding with its original 1.66:1 framing intact. Blacks look deep, shadow detail is nicely extended and colors are vivid and stable. Grain is retained and reserved, imparting a nice film-like appearance. While the source has been nicely cleaned up and Peeping Tom surely looks as good has it has in years, as can be witnessed in the Restoration Comparison, there is still just a bit of overall softness and flesh tones sometimes look somewhat unnatural.

Audio Quality

[Rating:4/5]

Peeping Tom has a simple monaural soundtrack provided in LPCM 2.0 (48kHz/24-bit). It sounds about as good as it can get with clean dialogue and minimal noise on the track.

Supplemental Materials

[Rating:3/5]

There are a good number of featurettes provided exploring the significance of the film, bringing together critics, filmmakers, and members of the cast. All of them are interesting to watch and highly informative.

The supplements provided with this release are:

  • Introduction by Martin Scorsese
  • Audio Commentary with Ian Christie
  • Eye of the Beholder (1.78:1; SD) — Critics and filmmakers, including Martin Scorsese and Ian Christie discuss Powell and his film Peeping Tom.
  • The Strange Gaze of Mark Lewis (1.78:1; SD) — This French documentary explores Peeping Tom and the psychology of its protagonist.
  • Interview with Thelma Schoonmaker (1.78:1; SD)
  • Restoration Comparison — A side-by-side comparison of previous versions and the new restoration.
  • Trailer (1.78:1; 1080p/24)
  • Stills Gallery (1080p/24)

The Definitive Word

Overall:

[Rating:4/5]

What a shame that Powell’s career was, for all practical purposes, halted after this film. It would have been interesting to see where he would have gone after this, one of his and Britain’s best. This new restoration is marvelous on Blu-ray and comes highly recommended by this reviewer.

Additional Screen Captures:

[amazon-product align=”right” region=”uk” tracking_id=”bluraydefinit-21″]B003YXZHC6[/amazon-product]

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.co.uk

Shop for more Blu-ray titles at Amazon.com


Join the Discussion on Our Forum

Advertisement

Related Articles

HBO Original: The Undoing (TV Series Review)

David E. Kelley gives us an open-and-shut murder case that will be unlikely to fool most of its viewers with The Undoing.

FX Original Black Narcissus (TV Series Review)

A buttoned-up remake of the classic 'Black Narcissus' in the form of a 3-episode series that portrays the physical and emotional struggle of English nuns to establish a school in a remote palace in the Himalayas.

Perry Mason: The Complete First Season (Blu-ray Review)

A complex neo-noir origin story for the famous criminal defense attorney gets a gorgeous Blu-ray release from Warner Bros.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Stay Connected

301FansLike
0FollowersFollow
723FollowersFollow
- Advertisement -

Notice of Compliance with FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION 16 CFR Part 255

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR part 255 guidelines, this website hereby states that it receives free discs and other theatrical or home entertainment “screeners” and access to screening links from studios and/or PR firms, and is provided with consumer electronics devices on loan from hardware manufacturers and/or PR firms respectively for the purposes of evaluating the products and its content for editorial reviews. We receive no compensation from these companies for our opinions or for the writing of reviews or editorials.
Permission is sometimes granted to companies to quote our work and editorial reviews free of charge. Our website may contain affiliate marketing links, which means we may get paid commission on sales of those products or the services we write about. Our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate partnerships. This disclosure is provided in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR § 255.5: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Latest Articles

HBO Original: The Undoing (TV Series Review)

David E. Kelley gives us an open-and-shut murder case that will be unlikely to fool most of its viewers with The Undoing.

FX Original Black Narcissus (TV Series Review)

A buttoned-up remake of the classic 'Black Narcissus' in the form of a 3-episode series that portrays the physical and emotional struggle of English nuns to establish a school in a remote palace in the Himalayas.

Perry Mason: The Complete First Season (Blu-ray Review)

A complex neo-noir origin story for the famous criminal defense attorney gets a gorgeous Blu-ray release from Warner Bros.

Popeye: 40th Anniversary Edition (Blu-ray Review)

An excellent release on Blu-ray of this long maligned but still fun to watch film.

The Hobbit: The Motion Picture Trilogy (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review)

The Hobbit: The Motion Picture Trilogy is arriving for the first time on 4K Ultra HD remastered in Dolby Vision and overseen by Peter...
%d bloggers like this: