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  • Touch of Evil [DVD] [1958] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
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Touch of Evil [DVD] [1958] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

74 customer reviews

Price: £5.48
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Dispatched from and sold by RAREWAVES USA.
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Region 1 encoding. (requires a North American or multi-region DVD player and NTSC compatible TV. More about DVD formats)
Note: you may purchase only one copy of this product. New Region 1 DVDs are dispatched from the USA or Canada and you may be required to pay import duties and taxes on them (click here for details) Please expect a delivery time of 5-7 days.

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Touch of Evil [DVD] [1958] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] + The Lady From Shanghai [DVD] [1947] [2003]
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Product details

  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: French, Spanish
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Studio: Universal Studios
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6305999872
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 128,359 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Experience Orson Welles' timeless masterpiece, Touch Of Evil, complete and uncut with restored footage for the first time ever! This exceptional film noir portrait of corruption and morally-compromised obsessions stars Welles as Hank Quinlan, a crooked police chief who frames a Mexican youth as part of an intricate criminal plot. Charlton Heston plays an honorable Mexican narcotics investigator who clashes with the bigoted Quinlan after probing into his dark past. A memorable supporting cast including Janet Leigh as Heston's inquisitive wife, Akim Tamiroff as a seedy underworld leader, Zsa Zsa Gabor and Marlene Dietrich as an enigmatic gypsy complete this fascinating drama engulfed in haunting cinematography and a magnificently eerie score by Henry Mancini.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

48 of 51 people found the following review helpful By Alejandra Vernon on 6 Jan. 2005
Format: DVD
A wild, quirky ride of corruption and intrigue, this noir thriller is brilliantly acted by Orson Welles and Charlton Heston, where Welles, as an American sleazy police chief investigating a murder in a Mexican border town, tangles with Heston, as his counterpart in the town. Welles was originally just slated to act in this film, but at the insistence of Heston, he was also made director.
The critical and box office response was poor however, and so disappointing to Welles, that he never made another film in Hollywood.
The cast is terrific: Janet Leigh plays Heston's naïve bride, and Akim Tamiroff one of the town's major bad guys. It also has a number of interesting cameos (though if you blink you might miss some of them), including Joseph Cotton, Keenan Wynn, Dennis Weaver, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Mercedes McCambridge, and best of all, Marlene Dietrich, who looks up from her tarot cards to tell Welles "your future is all used up".
Russell Metty's cinematography is unique and innovative, and Henry Mancini's jazz score outstanding.
Peculiar and bizarre, this film needs more than one viewing to fully appreciate, and to sort out its complex plot of many crooked paths. Welles also wrote the script, and it is spoken in a realistic manner, with dialogue overlapping, and people talking at once.
Heston thankfully does not have accented English, but instead looks handsome with dark makeup and a mustache, on the other hand, Welles has a speech pattern that fits his seedy character, as he slurs and sputters through his words.
This is a stupendous, one-of-a-kind piece of filmmaking, now acknowledged as a classic noir.
DVD extras include Welles' memo, theatrical trailer, production notes, cast and filmmakers. The film has been beautifully restored, and total running time is 1 hour and 51 minutes.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By danijmartin on 11 Nov. 2003
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The greatest "B movie" of all time.
What started out as a contractual obligation of Orson Welles grew into the creation of a finely directed and competently acted masterpiece of cinema history. Adapted from the book "Badge of Evil" this is a story of police corruption along the Mexican border. This film has everything! The opening sequence illuminates the flawless cinematography (this is the five minute tracking of the car), superb acting (Of course, Orson Welles and Charlton Heston are in the picture) and genre defining one liners that have become cinema history (the final word from Marlene Dietrich - need I say anymore?). This is film noir at its most bewitching. Savour every second from one of the greatest films from cinema's golden age.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Laurence Williams TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 17 Dec. 2011
Format: Blu-ray
The work of Orson Welles often gives rise to debate and heated argument (dating back to production, when there was a ferocious scrap between Welles and his financing studio over editing matters...), so to fire things up let me first say that I am not a big fan of his famous earlier works such as 'Citizen Kane' or 'The Magnificent Ambersons' - they simply don't excite or entertain me enough; 'Touch of Evil' on the other hand does ! I consider this film to be not only his best, but also one of the best films of all-time and certainly the best true 'Film Noir' in existence - although the much more modern, but slightly less 'Noir', Roman Polanski classic 'Chinatown' comes VERY close.....

So, a film that deserves to get the Blu-ray treatment in the hope of an improved presentation/special packaging and specialised British producer 'Eureka !' have done just that. Firstly, it should be noted that the disc content is essentially the same as the 50th anniversary DVD - but that is only available in a Region 1 guise.

It's difficult to say too much in detail about the plot without spoiling things for potential first-time viewers, but a flavour of the content is that it involves a feud between a Mexican government official and the local American police in and around a shanty town which sits right on the border separating the two countries, with the various unsavoury happenings involving murder, harassment and corruption.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Andy Millward VINE VOICE on 20 Jun. 2004
Format: DVD
There are several exceptional things about this DVD, not least that it has been totally restored to Welles's vision after meddling by the studio detracted from its original impact (Welles did seem prone to this kind of interference, perhaps an indication of his abrasive and independent character.)
In this form, you can drink in the seedy sleazy ambience like few other films - it's peeling off the walls, you can almost smell it. Apart from Charlton Heston and Vivien Leigh, all the characters reek of stale sweat and corruption. This is archetypal film noir, shot in dense B&W, with atmosphere derived in huge part from the brilliant cinematography, camera angles, lighting, sets, music.
Everything Welles did here is magnificent, original and innovative, none more so than the opening shot: it lasts four minutes, during which the camera swoops around the Mexican border town, spying the bomb being placed in the car boot, then interplays the traffic junctions while Heston and Leigh walk towards the border. The car comes back into shot repeatedly then stops or turns off, before they all meet again at the border post. This is filmwork fashioned from sheer genius, setting the tone for the film without words. In fact, words can barely do it justice.
The plot might be termed good old-fashioned melodrama that would not be to every taste, though in the hands of a superb cast assembled here it could scarcely be performed any better. Not the stuff of an epic, but as a film constructed in the image of its director it ranks not far short of Citizen Kane. To be admired as much as enjoyed.
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