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An Inspector Calls [DVD]

165 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Alastair Sim, Arthur Young, Olga Lindo, Brian Worth, Eileen Moore
  • Directors: Guy Hamilton
  • Writers: Desmond Davis, J.B. Priestley
  • Producers: A.D. Peters
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Studiocanal
  • DVD Release Date: 1 Mar. 2010
  • Run Time: 76 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (165 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002VD5SCE
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,715 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Based on the classic stage play by J.B. Priestly, An Inspector Calls stars the incomparable Alastair Sim as the inspector of the title. The Birling family are rich, pampered and complacent. It is 1912, and the shadow of the impending war has yet to fall across their lives. As they sit down to dinner one night, celebrating the engagement of the eldest child, Sheila, to prosperous business man Gerald, a knock at the door announces the arrival of a visitor who will change their lives forever. The visitor is a police inspector, who announces he is investigating the suspicious death of a young woman. As he questions each member of the family, years of secrets and lies are revealed, and the family soon find themselves wondering who the mysterious inspector really is – and how he knows so much about them.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

123 of 129 people found the following review helpful By UK Filmbuff TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 6 April 2005
Format: DVD
There couldn't have been a better inspector, than the brilliant Alastair Sim and a supporting cast of fine, talented actors, makes the story that much more convincing. The entire film, from start to finish, leaves nothing to the imagination. It is a masterpiece! The upper class family, convinced that they are of a better status than those not so fortunate. Doing what they can to convince themselves that they have done no wrong, yet their consciences are awakened, when the eerie, calm and knowledgeable inspector enters.
The story flows smoothly; first one, then another, then the entire family gathering, are given an insight into their behaviour and attitude towards those less fortunate than themselves. It is a fascinating insight into the debauch behaviour of the "haves", towards the "have nots". As relevant today as it was then!
It says much about us all! An absolute must see; I've been waiting for years for this film to be released!
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Mr. David M. Gostyn on 27 Mar. 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
First let me correct a major error in the synopsis. The girl is not murdered but commits suicide, a fact stated in almost the first minute of the film and never in question. But because the ending is itself both surprising and thought provoking I shall say no more about the story.

But I will say that it is no hyperbole to describe this film as one of the best ever made. J. B. Priestley seems to translate rather well onto the screen (were I to be reviewing Last Holiday with Alec Guiness I would be very nearly as complimentary, and certainly awarding 5 stars), and in my judgement the way that the capabilities of film have been used to bring the dead girl to life are an improvement. That said, I must add that some friends who saw the play at the theatre before they saw this film have said that they preferred the stage version. As it happens, I saw the film before I saw the play at the theatre and, for all that the theatrical performance was first rate, I prefer the film.

I don't think that Alastair Sim was capable of making a film that was less than excellent, but, just as with Green for Danger - another quite outstanding 5 star film in my opinion - the role of a police inspector brings out the best in him. The main supporting cast are also excellent: the pompous and unfeeling parents, the sensitive children prepared to learn from their mistakes, and the daughter's shallow fiance. The sound and picture are as good as a film of its age could be.

Summarising, this is a DVD that every film fan should have in his collection.
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65 of 70 people found the following review helpful By UK Filmbuff TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 15 Mar. 2004
Format: DVD
Alastair Sim is at his very best, playing the ghostly inspector, interviewing an upper-class family, in pre-First World War England. His masterful acting, combined with a brilliant cast and a script that is extremely believable, ensures that this gripping film holds the viewer's attention, right from start to finish, with that little extra susprise at the conclusion!

I do very much admire Bryan Forbes' portrayal of the alcoholic, uppper-class "boy" ("but he's only a boy", as his mother assures the inspector), while the father is absolutely convinced there won't be a war (perhaps he also believed the Titanic was unsinkable).

Each of the family has a story to tell about how their debauch, aristocratic lives affected a young girl; a girl who was seen as no more than a nuisance and a lower class worker, with no rights and no class. They claim the moral high ground, while their money supports their lifestyle of carefree, happy and irresponsible simplicity; they have wealth and status! The poor girl, eventually, dies under tragic and dubious circumstances and so it is that the eerie inspector calls on the upper-class family. Will his questioning reveal the truth? What IS the truth? Wait until the conclusion to find out and make up your own mind!

Even those that are not inclined to the quality of classic, British films, will find this a story that will command their attention and leave them wanting more!

I have been waiting for a long time, to add this brilliant film to my collection. I am extremely glad to see it is, at long last, being re-released.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By bear on 6 Jan. 2011
Format: DVD
This great little film is as fresh today as when it was made. Some of the attitudes of the characters can be found nowadays in modern day Britain
This film has a screenplay that is well written and contains a brilliantly understated perfomance from Alastair Sim as well as fine support from the rest of the cast, especially a very young Bryan Forbes.
The story is pretty straightforward but it will keep you guessing right to the end.
I recommend that you buy it, watch it and enjoy it.
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59 of 64 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 7 Mar. 2006
Format: DVD
Just a quick note if you are buying this to show to your GCSE pupils and you haven't seen it since your school days: the DVD is excellent quality even on a large screen. The Inspector is great and it's good to show the pupils the costumes and setting. It's not entirely faithful to the script though: for a start we have flashbacks showing Eva / Daisy which I think take away some of the mystery (and on a personal level, any sympathy for the character!). And why oh why oh why do they change the Inspector's name to Poole?!
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