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4.2 out of 5 stars
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4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 20 December 2002
A typical day in New York City. Psychiatrist Dr Elliot (Michael Caine) listens to Kate (Angie Dickinson) outlining her marital problems before she wanders off to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and picks up a mysterious stranger. Meanwhile, disturbed cross-dresser Bobby is ringing Dr Elliot and threatening to carve up his patients. And an uptown hooker (Nancy Allen) is turning tricks to fund her investment portfolio.
Brian de Palma's glossy and gratuitous cult classic is an unashamed homage to Alfred Hitchcock - not just one shower scene, but two - and has some marvellous set pieces. Especially the minor ones - check out the accusing looks of the little girl in the elevator when Kate heads home from her afternoon tryst with a lover.
A word of warning on the DVD available in the UK though. Unfortunately, this DVD has no screen set-up extras to allow you to choose the viewing format (though there are 5 language options and scene-selection). It is made to be viewed on a widescreen TV. It plays at 16:9 ratio on a standard TV, but this is not a pan-and-scan version, so you miss bits from the edge. It only REALLY interferes with a couple of scenes, when you get half the face of a character talking, but is an obvious flaw, not to mention a distraction, if you are a fan of the film. It comes with the original theatrical trailer.
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on 29 July 2013
Brian De Palma made a brilliant psycological horror in DRESSED TO KILL. Well done to Arrow for releasing this fine film on UK blu ray and UNCUT.
I already have the R1 Sp. Ed. and Region Free US blu ray but this is the best version especially as regards to extras imo.
The pq and sound are very good with a nice booklet as usual by Arrow but as with a lot of their blu rays and dvds I change the covers and for DTK you have the original artwork as on the 1980 poster.
it's a shame Michael Caine who is good in this (Sean Connery was after the role!) is not featured in the extras.....which is like John Travolta not in the recent Arrow blu ray of BLOW OUT.
Why not? Was the money not enough?
Rant aside this is an excellent film and you've got a good reason (if you haven't already) to see DePalma's classic thriller UNCUT!
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on 6 November 2015
Have fond memories of watching this on VHS as a teenager! De Palma at his outrageous best, with incredible camerawork, a barmy script and riffing on Hitchcock's Psycho.

This looks fantastic on Blu-ray and for me it was like watching the film for the first time! And Pino Donnagio's gorgeous music has never sounded so good!

Great extras, with interviews with all the cast and the outspoken and always controversial DePalma
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on 2 August 2015
De Palma has always been a visual storyteller. See the museum scene with Angie Dickinson to get a practical understanding of what I mean - it’s almost nine minutes of pure drama without any dialogue. It sets a precedent for a film that’s basically an American-made giallo infused with Hitchcockian style.

It’s visually captivating, throwing split screen, split lens, amazing camera movements and deep focus techniques at the viewer in both striking and understated ways. If judged on style alone it'd get top marks without hesitation. But there are other considerations. Some of the cast, for example, were a little too inexperienced for the role they were asked to play. Nevertheless, early De Palma is best De Palma, and Dressed to Kill is one of the essential ones. The Arrow Video blu-ray is the best I've ever seen it look, and it's the unrated, uncut version!
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on 9 August 2015
Not my favourite De Palma but still a classic. It has a strange structure: first half seems to follow a character, secondo half is an investigation about first half story. It reminds a lot of Psycho. There are some holes in the script but the overall atmosphere and some scenes are truly fantastic and visually powerful. A very good blu ray remastering
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 14 February 2014
Dressed to Kill is directed and written by Brian De Palma. It stars Michael Caine, Angie Dickinson, Nancy Allen, Keith Gordon and Dennis Franz. Music is by Pino Donaggio and cinematography by Ralf D. Bode.

Brian De Palma continues his commitment to Hitchcock thrillers with this erotic and lurid slice of entertainment pie. Plot in short order finds a razor wielding blonde woman on the loose in the city. A high class prostitute, a psychiatrist and the son of a victim try to solve the mystery before they themselves fall to the blonde killer.

De Palma throws it all at the audience here, merrily pushing people's buttons as he goes. He uses all the tools and tricks of his trade for maximum impact, blending a number of genre staples and churning out a hyper stylised neo-noir that gleefully toys with audience expectations. Oh the plot is bonkers, deliriously so, but De Palma is a crafty pro who deftly marries up the excesses of the plot with virtuoso camera work, and not content with that he then brings Donaggio's musical score into play to ensure the viewer's senses are tingling.

Unsurprisingly for the director, Dressed to Kill is sexually charged and violent, from the steamy beginning that ruffled feathers in a number of quarters, to the outrageous coda at the end where De Palma homage's himself, it's a film revelling in its schlocky being. However, it still has time for dramatic suspense and dangerously sensual mysticism, reference an extended section of film that sees Allen's hooker pursued relentlessly through the perils of the subway system, and a sequence played out at an art gallery without dialogue as we become Dickinson's disoriented eyes. Then there is the key murder scene, a dizzying array of slashes and cartoonish blood, it's purposely excessive and followed by screw tightening suspense that sets up the rest of the movie.

De Palma and his on form principal cast members are having fun, how could they not with such trashy material to work from? Is Dressed to Kill phobic and misogynistic? Well plenty of people think so, in fact there was quite a fall out when the film was first released, when De Palma was subjected to the ire of a few minority groups. Judge for yourself is the only way to go really, but personally in amongst the schlock I feel there's comment on the dangers of fantasising beyond your realm, or of unfaithfulness, maybe even that America is itself irresponsible for its treatment of women on film? Of course it could just be De Palma at his most playful? Sitting there giggling to himself as others lose their cool... 8/10
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on 22 September 2015
U.S. Distributor CRITERION COLLECTION has just released their blu-ray version of DRESSED TO KILL
and i was able to buy myself a copy
and i tell you the HD transfer looks amazing i think it's the best picture quality the film is ever going to get
well this time around, this UNRATED version gets a 4k restoration transfer supervised by Brian De palma himself
and i tell you the picture quality does look amazing, no Grain or dirt in the picture at all
very sharp & clear quality much better than the 2011 MGM blu-ray version and probably better than this Arrowfilms blu-ray to
the sound quality is very Good aswell, there's no 5.1 master audio mix, it's only a fixed stereo mix
but sounds pretty Good actually, Criterion must've boosted the sound a little
Criterion have also added new special features just for this blu-ray version
about 80mins of new interviews actually
very lengthy interviews with Brian De palma, Nancy Allen, Producer George Litto, Art Director Stephen sayadian,
music composer Dino Donaggio and
a new exclusive interview with shower scene Body double Victoria Lynn Johnson
who doubled Angie Dickinson's shower scene
plus criterion have also added the special features from the very old 2001 dvd version
which is the retrospective making of Documentary
the Keith Gordon featurette
the Pieces featurette, comparing the R rated & Unrated version
plus Stills Photo gallery and original theatrical trailer
the Criterion blu-ray is region A locked, so you'll need all regions player to buy it from amazon.com
2-3stars for this arrowfilms, 5 stars for the criterion blu-ray based on new 4k HD transfer & 80mins of new interviews
i actually sold my arrowfilms blu-ray, i think the Criterion blu-ray is the Definitive version i have no regrets either
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 19 February 2013
I seem to come a bit late to this one. I haven't seen it for many many years and always remembered it with affection. This MGM Home Ent DVD does not let me down. An excellent print (with the colour the way I imagine De Palma intended ie none too bright but just right-how's that for a bit of artistic criticism??), good picture and sound. It really is a woman's picture in that it is virtually carried by first Angie Dickenson in what I think is one of her finest roles (If you don't count BIG BAD MOMMA made just 3 or 4 years earlier-if you have seen it you can't forget it-I digress). The camera loves her and she loves it back. Then you have Nancy Allen, completely different and very lovable I thought-Vulnerable but tough. Both women have discreet nude scenes tho it is obvious that Angie uses a body double for some gratuitous close ups in the shower. The plot is, as others have said, a bit of a homage to Hitchcock and none the worse for it. You may know or guess the ending, but that didn't spoil a good solid mystery thriller. One of De Palama's best methinks. Highly recomended to film lovers everywhere. (And make what you will of Caine's performence!!). SISTERS arrived yesterday. Can't wait to see it.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 4 November 2014
A splendid blu ray transfer of one of Brian De Palma's best films. I still find the sexual explicitness of the opening very confusing and personally unnecessary and in this full uncut print even more so! That said, as a perverse homage to Hitchcock, the film has much to recommend it. Strong performances, rhapsodic music, and flamboyant photography blend to provide a delirious over the top thriller full of operatic bravura. Excellent features and an interesting booklet provide first rate background too, on this great value disc.
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on 12 August 2013
I've been a fan of this movie for over 20 years, seeing it at least 5 times on both terrestrial and Sky TV, but I can honestly say, this is the first time I've seen it as De Palma truly intended it to be seen! The quality of the transfer is excellent with a crystal clear widescreen picture and remixed 5.1 sound. But it's the extra stuff that's the real treat! The unrated footage took me by surprise - the shower scene is more explicit, as is the elevator murder - and seeing the terrific widescreen print, gave several key scenes an extra dimension (check out the reaction of an eavesdropper listening to Liz and Peter talk about sex changes!). The extras are thorough and interesting lacking only an interview with Caine. All in all a treat for fans of the movie.
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