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Brute Man [DVD] [1946] [US Import] [NTSC]

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

Price: £65.33
Only 1 left in stock.
Dispatched from and sold by M and N Media US.
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£65.33 Only 1 left in stock. Dispatched from and sold by M and N Media US.

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Product details

  • Language: English
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Unrated (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • ASIN: B00000IYR2
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 252,339 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Disc and case in excellent condition - viewed only once - from smoke free home

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Format: DVD
There is just something strangely compelling about 1946's The Brute Man. Rondo Hatton played "The Creeper," a serial killer terrorizing a whole city, specifically targeting the people he blames for an accident that essentially ruined his life. Back in his senior year of college, Hal Moffet suffered a terrible accident (brought on by a fateful mixture of love, jealousy, temper, and chemicals) that left his face disfigured. Now, he keeps to the shadows and only goes out at night because his appearance frightens everyone who gets a good look at him. Frankly, he has a right to be resentful and mentally unbalanced, given the set of circumstances that ruined his life. Over the years, though, his anger has grown to uncontrollable proportions, giving birth to "the Creeper." As murders seem to keep happening one after another, the police force finds itself stymied in its investigation of the heinous crimes - although they do almost catch Hal early on in the film. He evades them by climbing a fire escape and entering the apartment of a lovely young woman named Helen Paige (Jane Adams). Not only is she not afraid of her unexpected visitor, she is even nice to him - and no one has been nice to Hal in a long time. It isn't until his second visit to Helen's apartment that he learns she is blind. Still, a definite connection is made between the two - and something of the man Hal used to be is gradually revealed to the viewer. You do come to feel sorry for the man, but it's certainly not enough to redeem him - he is, after all, a vicious murderer with a lot of blood on his hands.
Rondo Hatton died before this movie was released, which only adds another dimension of tragedy to the whole film.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3.6 out of 5 stars 20 reviews
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars And now, the DVD technical review 10 May 2000
By Steven W. Hill - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
Another customer review very nicely covers the movie itself, so just let me chime in with a few quick words about the technical quality of the DVD release.
You might think that this disc would be grainy, or soft, or with poor contrast, particularly since it's from the legendary poverty row studio PRC, and a few other PRC videos are so-so. Truth is, although the film was released by PRC, it was produced by Universal Studios!
You'll be exceedingly happy to discover that the transfer to DVD is outstanding. Contrast is excellent, and the image is sharp and clean. This is a Criterion-level transfer here! Sound is nice and clean too. Of course, the disc hasn't anything in the way of extras. Running time is just about an hour, the case is a snapper.
If you're interested in the related films, this one is the last of the "Creeper" films. The Creeper is Rondo Hatton's "signature role" begun in 1944 in the Rathbone/Bruce Sherlock Holmes film PEARL OF DEATH, followed by 1946's HOUSE OF HORRORS, and finally THE BRUTE MAN (which was indeed Hatton's last film).
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Below-par B thriller of historical interest only 7 Mar. 2000
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
The Brute Man was the last film of Rondo Hatton, an acromagly sufferer whose disfigured looks were exploited by Hollywood in a series of movies in which he played a psychopathic back-breaker called The Creeper (although none of the movies, including the Sherlock Holmes thriller Pearl of Death, has any link and were not part of any series).
This cheap PRC production has Hatton hunt down the people responsible for his disfigurement (an explosion in his college lab) and also murder various others who get in his way. The victims include a nosy shop assistant and a jeweller who insists that Hatton pay for a broach. Meantime, he falls in love with a blind woman but she eventually betrays him to the police and he tries to kill her too.
One of the amusing things about this movie is that there's supposed to be a huge Dragnet out for Hatton but he's always walking down the street openly despite his looks and appearance. He actually doesn't give a bad performance. Deapite his reputation as The Ugliest Man Alive his looks aren't really bad enough to warrant the screaming reaction he gets from some of his victims. Film is padded out by some silly footage involving the investigating police (at one point playing cards when the Commissioner comes in and then taunting him). A pretty silly script and a general lack of style.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "I've changed a little since I last saw you." 1 Jan. 2006
By cookieman108 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I first became familiar with the character `The Creeper' after seeing a likeness of him in the 1991 film The Rocketeer, as special effects man Rick Baker transformed actor `Tiny' Ron Taylor into the character of Lothar, an incredible likeness of Rondo Hatton, who played the character (sans any prosthetics) in the late 1930s and through the 1940s, up until his death in 1946 at the age of about 52. Seems Hatton, once a handsome looking man (according to reports), suffered from a case of acromegaly, which resulted in a form of gigantism deforming his head, feet and hands to enormous proportions. Hatton's last film, The Brute Man (1946), directed by Jean Yarbrough (She-Wolf of London, Hillbillys in a Haunted House), features Tom Neal (Another Thin Man, Detour), Jan Wiley (She-Wolf of London), and Jane Adams (House of Dracula). Also appearing is Donald MacBride (My Favorite Wife, High Sierra, The Thin Man Goes Home), Peter Whitney (Destination Tokyo), Fred Coby (Devil's Cargo), and Janelle Johnson Dolenz, mother to Micky Dolenz, of the mid 1960s group "The Monkees".

As the film begins we learn the police are on alert as some psychotic lunatic is running around the city breaking necks without a permit. Turns out the killer, dubbed `The Creeper', is none other than former collegiate all American football player Hal Moffet (Hatton), once a normal looking man, now deformed brute out for revenge. So what happened? Well, seems back in the day when Hal was in college, he and his friend/roommate Clifford Scott (Neal) were both competing for the affections of the same woman, Virginia Rogers (Wiley), and Cliff, the smart one, in an effort to put one over on Hal, fed him with some wrong answers for a chemistry test, which resulted in Hal having to stay after class and do some extra work. In a fit of jealous anger, the hot-headed Hal accidentally exposed himself to some chemicals, which resulted in him becoming severely disfigured (he now has the face of a well worn catcher's mitt), paranoid, and extremely bitter. Cliff got the girl, and Hal disappeared, eventually returning to exact his revenge on those who he thinks ruined his life. During his efforts to elude the police, Hal meets an attractive and compassionate blind girl named Helen (Adams), and the two develop a friendship, as she has no idea he's actually `The Creeper'. Turns out Helen's condition is one that might benefit from a costly operation, one she can't possibly afford, but Hal knows Cliff (who now appears to be the poster boy for Murray's Superior Pomade...time to change that oil, m'boy) has done quite well for himself and his wife, as the pair are living high on the hog. It's reunion time as Hal visits the Scotts, but the inept police aren't far behind, catching a few breaks as some vital clues fall into their laps, and Hal ends up suffering even more, perhaps the ultimate, betrayal.

I read that Universal initially produced this film, but then ended up selling it off to Producers Releasing Corporation (PRC), a poverty row studio of the time, as they thought the material too exploitationary for their tastes, playing off Hatton's condition as the feature did...I could see their point, but it's funny how they weren't so offended as to shelve the project, but rather pawn it off to recoup their costs...business is business, I suppose. I did sort of enjoy the film, but it tended to get bogged down in the sappy subplot between Hal and Helen. I honestly thought this was going to result in story taking a different tact, one where Hal sees Helen living quite happily with her handicap, and might eventually come to accept his own condition, but it didn't go that way...I guess there wouldn't have been much point as Hal had already killed a number of people about the time this realization would have set in...he did seem to struggle a little with the notion that if he got the money for Helen's operation, and she could actually see, she might dump him given his `grotesque' appearance. Of the handful of people Hal disposes of (including a nosy grocery delivery boy), he missed one as someone who really deserved killing was that cantankerous, crotchety, loud mouthed grocery store owner. Geez, Louise, just because someone pays you a pittance to make deliveries and sweep the floor doesn't give them the right to verbally beat on you like a red headed stepchild. Anyway, there's really not a whole lot to get out of this film, other than plenty of shots of Hatton's condition for lurid, viewing pleasure, as he sneaks around, shimmying up fire escapes, skulking in bushes, etc. The man didn't seem to have much in the way of acting skills, and most rest of the performers weren't given much in terms of meaty parts to make up for his defiencies. At least Jan Wiley and Jane Adams were both really easy on the eyes. I am curious that if Ms. Adams character was, in fact, blind, how did she manage to make herself look as good as she did? I'm not saying blind people can't make themselves attractive, but she looked just a little too well made up...I thought the direction was quite good, but, as I mentioned earlier, the film gets mired is sap shortly after it starts, making the scant 59 minute run time seem much longer than it is...I did learn a few things from this film, the most important perhaps that if you're ever confronted in your home by a homicidal, neck breaking manic suffering some strange affliction causing his extremities to become enlarged, and you've managed to get the drop on him with a gun, go for the head shot, as shooting him in the leg only seems to make him go insane and even more kill crazy.

The picture quality, presenting in fullscreen (1.33:1), on this Image Entertainment release looks much better than I would have expected, and the Dolby Digital audio comes through very well. There are no extras available, and the film begins once placed into a DVD player. There are chapter stops, for what its worth.

Cookieman108

Oh, one more thing, if you're a store owner and a homicidal, neck breaking manic suffering some strange affliction causing his extremities to become enlarged wants to buy something on credit, you'd best let him, else he just might pop your head off like a bottle top.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rondo classic 14 Dec. 2011
By Mason C - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
First off, let start by saying that the treatment of Rondo Hatton was terrible, however, i did enjoy his "Creeper" films, and i really like the Bryte Man. The story revolves around Rondo's character of Hal Moffat, who was badly disfigured, now Hal, deranged by thoughts of revenge & hatred, turns into a bone crushing serial killer known as "the Creeper". The police are hot on his trail, as the Creeper continues his murderous romp, however, when he befriends a beautiful blind woman who takes pity on him, the story really kicks into gear. DVD quality was fine, not good, not poor, the sound was the same. Overall, a decent "Golden Era" Universal Monster flick (even though Universal sold the rights to the Creeper franchise). A must own for horror buffs.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rondo Hatton makes this film a memorable one 9 Feb. 2006
By Daniel Jolley - Published on Amazon.com
Format: DVD
There is just something strangely compelling about 1946's The Brute Man. Rondo Hatton played "The Creeper," a serial killer terrorizing a whole city, specifically targeting the people he blames for an accident that essentially ruined his life. Back in his senior year of college, Hal Moffet suffered a terrible accident (brought on by a fateful mixture of love, jealousy, temper, and chemicals) that left his face disfigured. Now, he keeps to the shadows and only goes out at night because his appearance frightens everyone who gets a good look at him. Frankly, he has a right to be resentful and mentally unbalanced, given the set of circumstances that ruined his life. Over the years, though, his anger has grown to uncontrollable proportions, giving birth to "the Creeper." As murders seem to keep happening one after another, the police force finds itself stymied in its investigation of the heinous crimes - although they do almost catch Hal early on in the film. He evades them by climbing a fire escape and entering the apartment of a lovely young woman named Helen Paige (Jane Adams). Not only is she not afraid of her unexpected visitor, she is even nice to him - and no one has been nice to Hal in a long time. It isn't until his second visit to Helen's apartment that he learns she is blind. Still, a definite connection is made between the two - and something of the man Hal used to be is gradually revealed to the viewer. You do come to feel sorry for the man, but it's certainly not enough to redeem him - he is, after all, a vicious murderer with a lot of blood on his hands.

Rondo Hatton died before this movie was released, which only adds another dimension of tragedy to the whole film. Hatton was a brave (and some would say exploited) actor, a man who basically created the ubiquitous "Creeper" persona because it was the only type of character he could play. Hatton was exposed to mustard gas during World War I, and that may or may not have contributed to the onset of acromegaly in the young actor a few years later. This disease attacks the pituitary gland and causes abnormal growth in the patient, producing the kinds of facial deformities that define Hatton's character in this film. The man wasn't a great actor, but I think the link between his own reality and that of his character lends an unquantifiable yet definitely detectable power to his performance. It certainly makes The Brute Man a memorable film - and in some ways a disquieting one that will leave you with mixed emotions over the character of the tragic killer.
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