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The Night of the Hunter – Criterion Blu-ray Unboxing

 
 
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Posted July 8, 2021 by

 
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One of the finest films ever made, Charles Laughton’s The Night of the Hunter is a beloved masterwork of 1950s cinema. This beautiful new definitive edition of the film from The Criterion Collection combines a stunning master of the film with a generous bundle of special features, including a fascinating two-and-a-half-hour documentary treasure trove of behind-the-scenes footage. 

“The Night of the Hunter—incredibly, the only film the great actor Charles Laughton ever directed—is truly a stand-alone masterwork. A horror movie with qualities of a Grimm fairy tale, it stars a sublimely sinister Robert Mitchum as a traveling preacher named Harry Powell (he of the tattooed knuckles), whose nefarious motives for marrying a fragile widow, played by Shelley Winters, are uncovered by her terrified young children. Graced by images of eerie beauty and a sneaky sense of humor, this ethereal, expressionistic American classic—also featuring the contributions of actress Lillian Gish and writer James Agee—is cinema’s most eccentric rendering of the battle between good and evil.” – The Criterion Collection

We took a closer look at the new Blu-ray release.

SPECIAL FEATURES

  • Digital transfer made from 35mm film elements restored by UCLA Film & Television Archive in cooperation with MGM Studios, with funding provided by the Film Foundation and Robert Sturm, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack 
  • Audio commentary featuring second-unit director Terry Sanders, film critic F. X. Feeney, archivist Robert Gitt, and author Preston Neal Jones
  • Charles Laughton Directs The Night of the Hunter, a two-and-a-half-hour treasure trove of outtakes and behind-the-scenes footage
  • New documentary featuring interviews with producer Paul Gregory, Sanders, Feeney, Jones, and author Jeffrey Couchman
  • New video interview with Laughton biographer Simon Callow
  • Clip from the The Ed Sullivan Show in which cast members perform a scene deleted from the film
  • Fifteen-minute episode of the BBC show Moving Pictures about the film
  • Archival interview with cinematographer Stanley Cortez
  • Gallery of sketches by author Davis Grubb, author of the source novel
  • New video conversation between Gitt and film critic Leonard Maltin about Charles Laughton Directs
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
  • Essays by critics Terrence Rafferty and Michael Sragow

THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER is available now on Blu-ray as part of The Criterion Collection


Samuel Love

 
Freelance writer. Email: samuel@smlcreative.co.uk


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