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Peeping Tom - Special Edition [DVD] [1960]

Carl Boehm , Moira Shearer , Michael Powell    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Actors: Carl Boehm, Moira Shearer, Anna Massey, Maxine Audley, Esmond Knight
  • Directors: Michael Powell
  • Producers: Michael Powell
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Optimum Home Releasing
  • DVD Release Date: 26 Mar 2007
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000LC3RRA
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 15,362 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



Michael Powell lays bare the cinema's dark voyeuristic underside in this disturbing 1960 psychodrama thriller. Handsome young Carl Boehm is Mark Lewis, a shy, socially clumsy young man shaped by the psychic scars of an emotionally abusive parent, in this case a psychologist father (the director in a perverse cameo) who subjected his son to nightmarish experiments in fear and recorded every interaction with a movie camera. Now Mark continues his father's work, sadistically killing young women with a phallic-like blade attached to his movie camera and filming their final, terrified moments for his definitive documentary on fear. Set in contemporary London, which Powell evokes in a lush, colourful seediness, this film presents Mark as much victim as villain and implicates the audience in his scopophilic activities as we become the spectators to his snuff film screenings. Comparisons to Hitchcock's Psycho, released the same year, are inevitable. Powell's film was reviled upon release, and it practically destroyed his career, ironic in light of the acclaim and success that greeted Psycho, but Powell's picture hit a little too close to home with its urban setting, full colour photography, documentary techniques and especially its uneasy connections between sex, violence and the cinema. We can thank Martin Scorsese for sponsoring its 1979 re-release, which presented the complete, uncut version to appreciative audiences for the first time. This powerfully perverse film was years ahead of its time and remains one of the most disturbing and psychologically complex horror films ever made. --Sean Axmaker,

Product Description

United Kingdom released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: LANGUAGES: English ( Mono ), ANAMORPHIC WIDESCREEN (1.78:1), SPECIAL FEATURES: Anamorphic Widescreen, Behind the scenes, Booklet, Cast/Crew Interview(s), Commentary, Documentary, Interactive Menu, Photo Gallery, Scene Access, Special Edition, Trailer(s), SYNOPSIS: Filmmaker and photographer Mark Lewis (Karl Heinz Böhm) spends days searching for just the right female models for his films which are studies of fear. He was raised by a psychologist father who used Mark as a subject for his own studies of fear and the exposure has left him marked psychologically so that he now is compelled to continue his search for women he murders for the camera as he films their reactions. Mark lives in the upper floors of his family house where he also has his photo lab and rents the downstairs to Helen Stephens (Anna Massey) and her blind mother Mrs. Stephens (Maxine Audley) whom he avoids until one day on Helen's birthday when the young nubile girl introduces herself to the photographer and they feel a connection. Mark trusts Helen enough to show her the films that his psychologist father took of him as a boy and the images disturb the girl but draws her closer to Mark. Mark's jobs as studio camera man for a film studio and cheesecake photographer for a local photo shop allows him easy access to women whom he murders while photographing to show their reactions to fear. When Helen accidentally sees some of his killing films she is appalled but wants to help Mark but the release of his secret is too much to bear as the police close in. ...Peeping Tom ( Face of Fear ) ( Röntgenci )

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
39 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HORROR MASTERPIECE 30 Mar 2007
By Anton
At last a decent DVD release for this disturbing classic from nearly fifty years ago. Vilified and treated like a video nasty on its initial release this trip inside the mind of a pyschopath is still so fresh and refreshing. Recommended for all students of serious horror, the tale of a disturbed young mind with a blade on his camera tripod filming his victims expressions as he kills them is utterly gripping. Acting all round is top notch in a production way ahead of it's time. Recommended.
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The film that was scarier that Psycho! 11 Jan 2001
Also released in 1960, Peeping Tom disgusted the censors and outraged the British Press to such a degree that Director Michael Powell found he had to move to Australia if he wished to continue his filmmaking career! The theme of scopophilia (pleasure from watching) is at the centre of this daringly ground-breaking movie as an affected cameraman (Mark) films the fear of the girls he murders to watch again and again! As he becomes emotionally entangled with his live-in tennant, his love for her becomes confused with his sociopathic desire to film her when she becomes frightened. A dark and interesting film, Peeping Tom addresses the very nature of cinema and the viewers' apparent complicity in the subject matter.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars has retained its disturbing power 4 May 2012
Peeping Tom (1960)

This is one of those films that is well preceded by its backstory. Director Michael Powell, one half of one of Britain's most famous filmmakers, Powell and Pressburger, committed career suicide with this film. The British public were so offended by this offering that the studios pretty much closed their doors to him, and one of our greatest filmmakers ever was prematurely finished, at the height of his powers. Only later, championed by the likes of Scorcese, did the world reevaluate Peeping Tom, and come to agree that it is a masterpiece. As a loss to filmmaking, it seems a similar story to that of Buster Keaton, after making the General, when it was a massive flop, and Keaton was not allowed the freedom to make his own films any more. He became a sideman, tied to a long-running inescapable contract, and ended up a frustrated alcoholic. Later, the film was recognised to be a masterpiece, some say the greatest silent film ever made, and one wistfully wonders what he might have produced had he not had his creative hands tied in such disastrous fashion.

This film, as you'd expect upon hearing of the reaction it forced from the public of the time, is brutal and shocking. Compared to Psycho (although Hitchcock suffered no similar public disgust), it is the story of a man who is only a "focus puller" in the movies, but who longs to be a film-maker. In his part time, he kills women with his camera, filming their last moments. By seeing what he sees while he does it, we are drawn into the murderer's mind perhaps more than in other killer films, and one wonders if this is one reason it feels so much more uncomfortable than other killer movies. Another reason for the outcry is that we don't see this man as just a cold-blooded killer.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great movie which some find unpleasant 15 Mar 2008
This is a great, unpleasant, disturbing film made by Michael Powell three years after he and his partner in the Archers, Emeric Pressburger, went their own ways. British critics loathed it, said so loudly, and the movie died within weeks of its release. Some say it destroyed Powell's career.

Mark Lewis (Carl Boehm) is a young man who works as a camera puller at a movie studio, who also at night photogaphs girlie pictures for magazines. His father, a psychologist, studied the effects of fear by putting his son in terrible situations and then photographing the child's reactions. Lewis lives in the second floor of a house and often watches those movies while he sits alone in the dark.

Lewis also does something else. In the tripod of his camera there is a concealed knife. As he photographs a girl the knife pushes into her, while the camera films her face as she realizes she is going to die and then while she is dying. He plays back these movies, too. As you watch Peeping Tom you become a voyeur participant in what he is doing. He meets the young woman who lives below him and it is apparent that she is at first curious about him, but then attracted to him. He finds within himself an attraction that might be love, might be salvation, but which is conflicted. The movie plays out with tension, remorse and even sympathy. The ending is somewhat unexpected, but with hindsight also inevitable.

And maybe that is what made this movie so controversial. Lewis is a sympathetic figure. You know what his father put him through because you've watched those old movies. Boehm playes Lewis as a shy, nice, rather sad young man. Anna Massey, who plays Helen Stephens, the girl on the first floor, is a first-rate actress and in this role she is excellent.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars TRULY AHEAD OF ITS TIME ! 1 Dec 2000
Format:VHS Tape
Truly ahead of its time, Michael Powell excelled himself and the minds of his audience with this extraodinary piece of work.
I remember first seeing this as a naive 12 year old late one night on BBC2 and it was the first film that truly moved me in a unexplainable way.
As you expect from Powell the use of colour is stunning, coupled with a difficult storyline. The film was panned on release and only due to the likes of Martin Scorsese has it become the classic that it always was.
Simply stunning, and easily ranks among Powell's best work. Buy it !
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars If you like Hitchcock you will like this
An ok film that was banned at the time. Wondered what all the fuss was about. If you like Hitchcock you will like this. Interesting interviews in the extras.
Published 1 month ago by G.O.M.
3.0 out of 5 stars didnt think it was as good as all the hype said it would be but ...
didnt think it was as good as all the hype said it would be but would need to maybe need to watch a couple of more times to be sure
Published 1 month ago by david laing
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic !
Fantastic Blu ray ! Gorgeous picture, great bonuses. Loved it !
Published 1 month ago by C. Bruno
5.0 out of 5 stars Peeping Tom (1960) Dvd remastered
A Interesting film, Carl Boehm starred in this sensitive and disturbing film of fetishes of watching people with telescopes and movie camera's. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Welsh Owl
4.0 out of 5 stars Notes on a Scandal
'The sickest and filthiest film I can remember seeing'. That typical verdict by the critic of The Spectator reflected the fact of this film being one of the most critically... Read more
Published 3 months ago by M. J. Nelson
5.0 out of 5 stars Fear and the Nervous System.
Peeping To is directed by Michael Powell and written by Leo Marks. It stars Carl Boehm, Moira Shearer, Anna Massey, Maxine Audley and Brenda Bruce. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Spike Owen
5.0 out of 5 stars nice updated transfer for Blu-ray
Since Criterion doesn't seem to have plans for this title on Blu-ray, it's nice to have the British Blu-ray transfer of this powerful film. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Jobla
5.0 out of 5 stars Peeping Tom
Interesting to watch this (in)famous movie at last: obviously it is now regarded as a major film which influenced many subsequent directors: you can see why. Read more
Published 10 months ago by A. Holdcroft
4.0 out of 5 stars okay
Not too bad a film really. It wasn't as good as I rememberd if from seeing it on TV many years,but still worth watching.
Published 12 months ago by merlin
5.0 out of 5 stars A peep into a true cult classic!
One of my all time favourite cult movies.This neglected masterpiece from Michael Powell is a must for any serious student of film. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Dale Belcher
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