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Don't Look Now [VHS] [1973]


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Product details

  • Actors: Julie Christie, Donald Sutherland, Hilary Mason, Clelia Matania, Massimo Serato
  • Directors: Nicolas Roeg
  • Writers: Allan Scott, Chris Bryant, Daphne Du Maurier
  • Producers: Anthony B. Unger, Frederick Muller, Peter Katz
  • Format: VHS
  • Language: English, Italian
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Warner
  • VHS Release Date: 3 April 2000
  • Run Time: 105 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (164 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004CYIS
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 203,078 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Nicolas Roeg's chilling film, based on a short story by Daphne du Maurier, follows a married couple as they attempt to recover from the death of their young daughter. John Baxter (Donald Sutherland) and his wife, Laura (Julie Christie), are staying in Venice in an attempt to find relief after the drowning of their daughter, Christine (Sharon Williams), in a tragic accident. However, the city appears to have an unfortunate effect upon the grieving John, who begins seeing a red-coated figure who resembles the dead child flitting around the local canals. The couple also happen across a pair of sisters who claim to have had visions of their daughter. According to the sisters, the child has been trying to contact John in an attempt to warn him that something terrible is about to happen...

From Amazon.co.uk

Don't Look Now was filmed in 1973 and based around a Daphne Du Maurier novel. Directed by Nicolas Roeg, it has lost none of its chill: like Kubrick's The Shining, its dazzling use of juxtaposition, colour, sound and editing make it a seductive experience in cinematic terror, whose aftershock lingers in daydreams and nightmares, filling you with uncertainty and dread even after its horrific climax. Donald Sutherland plays John Baxter, an architect, Julie Christie his wife: a well-to-do couple whose young daughter drowns while out playing. Cut to Venice, out of season, where the couple encounter a pair of sisters, one of whom claims psychic powers and to have communicated with their dead daughter. The subsequent plot is as labyrinthine as the back streets of the city itself, down which Baxter spots a diminutive and elusive red-coated figure akin to his daughter, before being drawn into an almost unbearable finale. Don't Look Now is a Gothic masterpiece, with its melange of gore, mystery, ecstasy, the supernatural and above all grief, while the city of Venice itself--which thanks to Roeg and his team seems to breathe like a dark, sinister living organism throughout the movie--deserves a credit in its own right. Not just a magnificent drama but an advanced feat of cinema. --David Stubbs

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By E. A. Redfearn TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 30 Jan 2010
Format: DVD
This unforgettable classic first seen in 1973 has remained to this day one of the finest efforts from director Nicholas Roeg.

Set in Venice where Laura Baxter(Julie Christie) and her husband John Baxter(Donald Sutherland) has taken a commission to work on church renovations. Slowly recovering from their sad loss of their daughter who had drowned they meet two old sisters, one of whom claims a psychic connection with the dead daughter. John Baxter is sceptical and then becomes concerned when his wife becomes too attached to the sisters believing that her daughter is trying to contact them. Meanwhile, there are a spate of gruesome murders in Venice which leave the local police baffled. Then, one day John sees a boat pass with a funeral party on board and Laura is amongst them. . . . .

I don't want to say any more about the plot, because it does lead to an astonishing ending. It is one of those classic films which has stood the test of time. Wonderfully directed, with fine acting from the leads. The film also includes an extraordinary love scene between husband and wife which is tastefully done, and remains one of the highlights of the film.

My only quibble is that the soundtrack is rather flat, although picture is reasonable bearing in mind that filming in Venice during the winter months means problems with the contrast between light and dark. This does not distract from the story however.

A Cinema Classic.
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44 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Anthony J. Thorne on 30 Jun 2011
Format: Blu-ray
Nicolas Roeg's stylish and frightening occult thriller has gained in critical appreciation since it was originally released nearly four decades ago(!), and this extras-laden Blu-Ray set does it justice by gathering together the various supplemental features from earlier home video editions along with newly shot interviews with Donald Sutherland and additional crew members. I doubt anyone will be too disappointed with the extras on this disc. That noted, the audio and visual remaster featured on this Blu-Ray is of particular importance as it offers a significant upgrade in both picture and sound to all earlier home video editions. The colourful picture is noticeably sharper than earlier DVD editions and does a great job of showcasing Roeg's remarkable, often near-hallucinatory imagery. Perhaps even more importantly, the sound is equally improved and eliminates the various distortion issues that plagued earlier DVD releases. DON'T LOOK NOW came out on DVD in both the USA and UK a few years back and various online forums did their best to decide which of the two sounded superior. Sadly, each DVD sounded pretty rotten and did little justice to the film, the dialogue or Pino Donaggio's haunting score. This new Blu-Ray (proudly displaying a cover sticker noting "Picture and Audio Restoration Supervised and Approved by Nic Roeg") fixes those issues entirely and presents the movie in a clearly listenable form for perhaps the first time on home video. It sounds terrific.

DON'T LOOK NOW is a masterpiece and this Blu-Ray provides a definite, welcome upgrade from any DVD edition you might own. Now, could someone do a special edition of Roeg's weird, sexy and stylish EUREKA?
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46 of 49 people found the following review helpful By P. Sanders VINE VOICE on 25 July 2002
Format: DVD
I first saw this film as a teenager on a black and white TV late at night. I didn't know much about the film except that it was a horror film of sorts. I soon found that it was so much more. As the film progressed it got very late, but I knew I couldn't go to bed until it was over. It left me speechless. The direction, the acting, the music, and especially the feeling of escalating dread - what would happen at the end? The ending not only surprised me, but actually made me gasp in shock.
A couple, bereaved after their daughter's death, stay awhile in wintry Venice. Two elderly sisters claim to be in contact with the dead girl, but are they telling the truth, or are they con artists? Add to this a series of strange events and a murderer terrorising the city...
This could have been (and indeed sounds like) a cheap horror flick. The reason "Don't Look Now" is a classic (an overused word, but true in this case) is that we care about the Baxters. Sutherland and Christie are thoroughly believable, especially when they have lines about the occult that could easily be corny. The same is true of Roeg's direction - instead of cheese we get a real sensation of doom. Rather than picture-postcard Venice we have rats, crumbling buildings and a bleakly-coloured maze full of confusion.
We are also left wondering about the supporting cast (even at the end we are not sure of everyone's good character). The two dotty old sisters. The shifty priest. The hotel manager. Even the police detective seems a little suspicious. Visual motifs recur - a child's ball, the red of the dead girl's coat - are they hints from the dead girl to her parents?
Of course the film is famous for its sex scene, and it is justly celebrated.
Read more ›
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Abi Sullivan on 22 Dec 2005
Format: DVD
Don't Look Now is not so much a horror film as a psychological thriller. It stars Julie Christie and Donald Sutherland as husband and wife, John and Laura Baxter, who lose their young daughter in a drowning accident in England. However, the majority of the film takes place against the backdrop of the dilapidated ruins and dark alleyways of Venice where the couple involuntarily meet a pair of mysterious, slightly creepy old English sisters, one of whom is both blind and psychic. She informs Laura that their daughter is trying to communicate with them from beyond the grave and as the film unravels it becomes apparent that the message is more of a warning that something macabre may happen to John.
The film is littered with hints and cryptic symbolism which can be read into on many levels. The use of colour, particularly red, runs through the film, uniting several themes and evoking unspoken ideas about passion, danger, murder and blood.
The pace is fairly slow and some scenes don’t appear to make much sense, however, I believe this has been done on purpose so that the viewer can interpret the film through individual eyes and it is ultimately up to the viewer to decide the sense of the ending.
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