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Pretty Poison [DVD]

Anthony Perkins , Tuesday Weld , Noel Black    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: 12.99
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Product details

  • Actors: Anthony Perkins, Tuesday Weld, Beverly Garland, John Randolph, Dick O'Neill
  • Directors: Noel Black
  • Writers: Lorenzo Semple Jr., Stephen Geller
  • Producers: Noel Black, Jack Grossberg, Lawrence Turman, Marshall Backlar
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Second Sight
  • DVD Release Date: 5 Sep 2005
  • Run Time: 86 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000A0XTN0
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 126,549 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

Dark cult thriller starring Anthony Perkins and Tueday Weld. Psychotic arsonist Dennis Pitt (Perkins) has just been release from prison and meets young high school student Sue Ann (Weld). Convincing her that he is a secret agent on a dangerous mission, Pitt and Sue Ann team up to pursue a life or murder and mayhem. But it soon becomes unclear exactly who is manipulating whom, as Sue Ann gradually convinces Pitt to help in the murder of her own mother.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Norman Bates goes steady with teenage Bad Seed! 26 Sep 2005
Format:DVD
Deservedly one of the most acclaimed sleepers of the Sixties, "Pretty Poison" is a neat, deft and beautifully performed chiller wherein Tuesday Weld and Tony Perkins stunningly portray a couple of clean-cut kids out on a murder spree. This 89-minute film is so tightly, tautly constructed that the complexities of plot and, even more important, of character, will emerge plain. For while contemporary in theme and technique, this 1968 movie is old-fashioned in the best sense in that it tells us of the monsters who walk among us in the sunlight disguised as pretty people. With a notably adroit screenplay by Lorenzo Semple, Jr., and a promising debut from young director Noel Black, "Pretty Poison" also boasts a vivid performance by Beverly Garland as Weld's sexually competitive mother.
"Pretty Poison" starts with a beautifully sly-solemn scene in which Perkins is about to be sprung from prison, or maybe from an insane asylum. "You're going out into a very real and very tough world," his earnest probation officer warns him. "It's got no place for fantasies." Quick cut to reality: Miss Weld in her majorette outfit, waving her baton to beat the band and giving a distinct impression that the film is up to something special.
"Pretty Poison" is a special film indeed, and Hollywood financiers and merchandisers were struck even dumber than usual by the problems of selling special pictures. With no conviction of their own about its character, 20th Century-Fox, the film's distributor, picked the name of this one by taking a poll, dropping its original provocative title, "She Let Him Continue" from the book by Stephen Geller. Having settled on a conventionally lurid title, they certified its apparent shoddiness with squalid little newspaper ads.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Pitt and the Poison. 8 Mar 2014
By Spike Owen TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
Pretty Poison is directed by Noel Black and adapted to screenplay by Lorenzo Semple Junior from the novel "She Let Him Continue" written by Stephen Geller. It stars Anthony Perkins, Tuesday Weld, Beverly Garland, John Randolph and Dick O'Neill. Music is by Johnny Mandel and cinematography by David Quaid.

Pure definition of a culter movie? Probably Pretty Poison. A wonderfully odd neo-noir that's as cunning as a fox, Noel Black's movie flummoxed many upon release but the underground swell of the cult enthusiasts has ensured this particular poison is still around to be swallowed.

Plot finds Perkins as troubled Dennis Pitt, an arsonist as a youth and fantasist as an adult, he's just been released from a mental health facility, in spite of his parole officer's reservations. Beginning his employment at a chemical factory, Dennis comes into contact with young high school drum majorette, Sue Anne Stepanek (Weld), and lets her believe he is a secret agent. Little does he know, but Sue is only too happy to indulge his fantasies, since she herself is harbouring some unhealthy desires.

Much like the brilliant film noir movie Gun Crazy (1950), Pretty Poison upturns the standard boy and girl crime spree formula by having the girl be the one doing the damage. Dennis Pitt has absolutely no idea how not in control of the relationship he is, he's beguiled by Sue, thinking he has finally found a soul mate to share in his fantasies, but she's pulling all the strings, luring him into a web of chaos from which he is completely incapable of escaping from.

With the characterisations firmly in place, where both Weld and Perkins are on top form, Black and his tech team pump discoloured blood through the picture's veins.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  33 reviews
22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tuesday Weld is incredible...!!! 12 Sep 2006
By Hitman777 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Two talented actors, Anthony Perkins and Tuesday Weld really make this movie shine. It's a long-overdue release, and if you've never seen this under-rated and lesser-known gem, do yourself a favor and check it out!

Tuesday Weld smokes in this, playing a young girl whose initial, apparent innocence proves too much for Anthony Perkins who is perfect as a troubled young man who is caught in his own fantasy-world.

I'm so happy this has finally been released! I've enjoyed it in late-night airings for years on television.

Now if only "The Shuttered Room" will get released, I can die a happy man!
20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "PSYCHO" MEETS HIS MATCH 19 Sep 2006
By Robin Simmons - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
1968's PRETTY POISON starring Anthony "Psycho" Perkins and former teen tease Tuesday Weld is a much-wanted cult fave not on DVD in Region 1 (USA). With no fanfare, it's now available as a Region 1 but without director Noel Black's better than average commentary on the Region 2 import (Amazon UK).

Adapted by Lorenzo Semple, Jr., from Stephen Geller's twisted love story "She Let Him Continue," opens with Perkins' Dennis Pitt being released from a psychiatric institution or prison for committing arson. The probation officer warns: "You're going into a real, tough world. It's no place for fantasies." First thing Dennis sees when he settles in a small town is seductive, pouty Sue Ann Stepanek (Weld), a girl with serious attitude problems, in her majorette outfit. Uh oh.

This deliciously demented black comedy focuses on what happens when two pathologies collide. It's a forerunner to movies like Bonnie and Clyde, Badlands and Blue Velvet.

Perkins and Weld have great chemistry as the two dodgy lovebirds. She merrily lets him pretend he's a CIA agent but deviously manipulates his fantasies to her own ends.

Beverly Garland is Weld's sexually charged, domineering mom. But it's Perkins and Weld at their best that make this rare gem from the 60s worth finding. I liked director Noel Black's forthright commentary on the Region 2 version (Amazon UK). Wonder why it's missing on the US version?

Rated: R (Originally X in the UK). Genre: Crime Thriller/Romance. 1 Hour, 29 Minutes. Starring: Tuesday Weld, Anthony Perkins, Beverly Garland. Director: Noel Black
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars tuesday weld is great in this......... 5 Sep 2006
By Emer Foley - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
you're in for a real treat with this long hard to find lost treasure. perkins and weld are in top form in this offbeat thriller/black comedy.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "Pretty Poison" Purrs but Doesn't Growl 16 Aug 2008
By Bryan Cassiday - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
Fete of Death
Dennis Pitt, an emotionally disturbed arsonist prone to fantasizing, is released from a mental institution and ventures out into the real world where he tries to impress Sue Ann, a high-school blonde with the face of a baby doll, by pretending to be a spy for the CIA. At the time of Pitt's release from the asylum, his doctor admonished him to stop fantasizing because there is no place for it in the real world. It turns out, though, that the real world contains even crazier and more dangerous psychopaths than do the insane asylums. "Pretty Poison" has a fascinating premise and it should have been a far better movie. The trouble is the direction is flat and uninspired. The movie is slow-paced and fails to build any significant suspense or thrills, which is out of joint with its subject matter. On the other hand, Anthony Perkins and Tuesday Weld turn in well-honed performances as psychopaths, and, oddly enough, of the two, Weld comes off as the scarier.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Pretty Poison" - Deadly but Not Arresting 9 Nov 2006
By V. Risoli - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
"Pretty Poison" has had a very rough life, originally released in 1968, was considered faithlessly by 20th Century-Fox, its studio that it was dumped into the latter part of a double-bill initially and given that lurid title. Lorenzo Semple, Jr. wrote the screenplay (of TV's "Batman" fame) and wrote it well. Tuesday Weld, perhaps a bit too old to play a high school teen was superb and took home a few awards for this part, even though she finds her part regretable and held a dislike for the director, Noel Black, who made a very impressive feature debut with this film. The images are sumptuous and the look and feel of the film are flawless. Anthony Perkins is also cast opposite Tuesday for a pairing that was charasmatic, repeated several years later in "Play It As It Lays." The critics that came to bat for "Pretty Poison" upon its release used it as a cause for "the sleeper" (which found long-running homes for movies like "Night of the Living Dead" and "Rider on the Rain" (which needs a better DVD pressing, guys). The Lawrence Turman production is top calibre all the way with Tuesday unspeakably delicious as the cheerleader, an actress long-overdue for honors.
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