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Hammer Film Double Feature

 

   The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll (1960)                       The Gorgon (1964) 

 

Though perhaps not as iconic as their Dracula and Frankenstein pictures, this Double Feature from England's Hammer Films deliver enough Saturday afternoon creature feature thrills to please devotees of the legendary studio's output and vintage horror fans alike. 1964's The Gorgon will be the title to attract the most immediate attention due to the presence of Hammer's biggest stars, Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing, in its cast, and its most celebrated director, Terence Fisher, behind the camera. It's an atmospheric and offbeat entry in the Hammer canon, with one of its most unusual villains: a snake-haired fiend from Greek mythology who turns men into stone. Cushing and Lee are typically fine (both are on the side of the angels for once), and the picture's sole stumbling block is the lackluster makeup for its monster. Fisher's The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll (1960), a revamp of the Stevenson story with Paul Massie as the dour scientist whose personality experiments unleash a virile but unhinged alter ego. Hardcore Hammer aficionados will be thrilled to discover that the Blu-ray version is uncut and preserves much of the (mildly) salacious material trimmed for its release in America under the title House of Fright.

 


Titles

 


 

The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll
Dr. Henry Jekyll experiments with scientific means of revealing the hidden, dark side of man and releases a murderer from within himself.

The Gorgon
In early-twentieth-century middle-Europe, villagers are literally becoming petrified. Although the authorities try to hush the matter up it is apparent that at the full moon, Medusa leaves her castle lair and anyone looking on her face is turned to stone. When this fate befalls a visitor, experts from the University of Leipzig arrive to try and get to the bottom of it all.

 

 

Posters

Theatrical Releases: 1960 - 1964

DVD Reviews

Comparison:

 

Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

 

Box Covers

 

  

 

  

  

 

Distribution Sony - Region 1 - NTSC Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
  1.35;1 / 1.78 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 7.14 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 23,415,797,068 bytes

Jekyll Feature: 11,951,990,784 bytes

Gorgon Feature: 11,291,541,504 bytes 

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 17.00 Mbps

Time: Respectively - 1:28:06,  1:23:15 1:28:16.708  /  1:23:24.040

Bitrate:

DVD of The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll

Blu-ray of The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll
Bitrate:

DVD of The Gorgon

Bitrate:

Blu-ray of  The Gorgon

Audio English (original mono) Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB
Subtitles English, None None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Sony

Aspect Ratio:
All Original Aspect Ratios - 2:35:1 for The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll (1960) + The Curse of the Mummy's Tomb (1964)
1:66:1 for The Gorgon (1964) + Scream of Fear (1961)

Edition Details:
trailers


DVD Release Date: October 14th, 2008

One Keep Case
Chapters: 12 X 4

Release Information:
Studio: Mill Creek
 

1080P Single-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 23,415,797,068 bytes

Jekyll Feature: 11,951,990,784 bytes

Gorgon Feature: 11,291,541,504 bytes 

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 17.00 Mbps

 

Edition Details:

 None

Blu-ray Release Date: September 6th, 2016
Standard
Blu-ray Case

Chapters: 4 + 4

 

 

 

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

ADDITION: Mill Creek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray September 16': Mill Creek's 2016 Blu-ray transfer is kind of underwhelming - the two features share a single-layered Blu-ray disc supporting a modest bitrate (17 Mbps) and only lossy audio (no improvement). There are no extras and no optional subtitles.

Does it look better? - yes, it does but far from the best it could. The US remains indifferent to the Hammer Films archive where in region 'B' you can get many of the studios desirable titles. I'm anxious to obtain and review Universal's 2016 Hammer Horror 8-Film Blu-ray Collection.

Big bonus here, though, is the price. Fans should probably nab it. We reviewed the 2 disc Sony DVD HERE - which still has value.

We have reviewed/compared Mill Creek's Blu-ray of Hammer Film Double Feature - Revenge of Frankenstein & The Curse of the Mummy's Tomb, HERE.

***

ON THE DVD Boxset: Much in the vein of Sony's Icons of Horror - Boris Karloff or Sam Katzman collections, the four feature films of this boxset are shared, two each on two dual-layered, progressive DVDs with all 4 widescreen features being anamorphically enhanced. All have original aspect ratios - 2:35:1 for The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll (1960) + The Curse of the Mummy's Tomb (1964), 1:66:1 for The Gorgon (1964) + Scream of Fear (1961). Each disc is coded for Region 1 in the NTSC standard. They have original mono audio (or 2.0 channel stereo) and the dialogue is supported by optional English subtitles. The 2 DVDs are housed in one keep cases and they are not sold separately at this time. I believe these particular NTSC editions can only be obtained in Sony's Icons of Horror - Hammer Films collection at present.

Image quality: The three color features look quite strong and fairly consistent. Scream of Fear seems the weak link with a strange softness at times that may very well be part of the original presentation. But the prevalent noise I'm sure is nt and contrast can be a bit muddy. I have no adamantly strong complaints with the way these, essentially single-layered, transfers look as my expectations were not astronomic.  There is some minor digital noise throughout but, except for Scream of Fear, nothing distracting. There are no overt damage marks - just some minor light speckles here and there. I think the captures below give a fair representation of how the DVD package looks. They are certainly very watchable.

Audio was acceptable if unremarkable. It was consistent and clear enough and the dialogue is supported with optional English subtitles.

 

Unfortunately there are no extras save some trailers which are both intense and amusing!

 

I love sinking into these genre efforts - no matter the 'cheese factor' - Hammer always had a slight edge in quality over a lot of similar, more exploitation based, horror films. This package is fun but I'd recommend Universal's The Hammer Horror Collection over it by a mile (8 super Hammer Horrors in one package for about $2 each). Still for new fodder, I immersed myself in this one and admit to enjoyment. Fans have an idea what they are in for - and this package shouldn't disappoint despite the lack of supplements. The Gorgon was especially pretty cool!

Gary W. Tooze


DVD Menus


Disc 2

 

Mill Creek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray



CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION

 

 

The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll (1960)

 

Subtitle Sample - Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC (no subtitles offered on the Blu-ray)

 

Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

Mill Creek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 
 
Screen Captures
 

Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

Mill Creek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

Mill Creek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

Mill Creek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

 

More Blu-ray Captures

 


 

The Gorgon (1964)

 

Subtitle Sample - Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC (no subtitles offered on the Blu-ray)

 

Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

Mill Creek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

Screen Captures

Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

Mill Creek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

Mill Creek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

Sony (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC - TOP

Mill Creek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

More Blu-ray Captures

 


 

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Gary Tooze

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