Top critical review
One person found this helpful
tweak of the blu nerve
on 5 March 2015
Arrow Blu-ray. A beautiful, elegant Bava film. Is there any other kind?...violence so frequent, so energetic, so in the face that it becomes a black comedy in mere moments, edited with panache, a verve for the macabre. But the blu ray, for all it's sharpness and crisp detail in abundance, is distinctly too bright, beneath a sheen of heightened light levels regardless of the scenario in question. The black levels are such that almost all the interior shots where blacks & solid shadows are prominent (and these scenes are frequent throughout) particularly in the foreground, are all awash with brightness & are greyed out. So although you get bright detail for close-ups and graphic moments, the black areas are deadened with light. Which to me, undermines the whole. The superb soundtrack and the eye of Bava saves the blu ray from being a waste of an upgrade. The italian version and the extras compensate.
The italian print, though of lower grainier and non HD quality, has on this blu ray a superior denser level of black, and dare i say, fuller mono sound. Apparently the film was shot english and italian as separate entities, and the italian certainly feels more natural in fluidity of dialogue and the tempo overall.The one obvious flaw with the italian print is that the contrast is actually too high, and whites tend to become burning areas of blur. A middle ground print that exemplifies the black solids and the even temper of the other colours would be welcomed.
The usual dubbed mono soundtrack is very quiet or loud. The italian track on the italian print has occasional roughness or treble issues but is more pert, apparent than the american one. Extras and other variations of covers are appealing add ons, the interviews insightful, the Edgar Wright appreciation may attract newer fans. But i cannot forget the bugging lack of blackness to that main feature HD. The detail may well be an improvement, comparatively, i have a number of prints on dvd and they all vary in colour and contrast, but as to being superior remastering, it is not as final or definitive as it might be.