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(aka 'The Woman Who Wouldn't Die')

directed by Gordon Hessler

UK 1965


Boasting a brilliantly sinuous plot with a startling denouement, this supernatural thriller marked the directorial debut of Gordon Hessler, best-known for his work on the enormously influential series Alfred Hitchcock Presents and The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, and cult horror duo The Oblong Box and Scream and Scream Again. Featuring an outstanding central performance from Gary Merrill a regular guest in both Hitchcock series Catacombs is presented here in a brand-new transfer from the original film elements, in its as-exhibited theatrical aspect ratio.

Money and power have brought Mrs Garth a charming husband. But despite her beauty and intelligence, she receives neither his loyalty nor his love; instead, he is infatuated with her young niece. Mrs Garth domineering ways have also alienated her only secretary, Richard Corbett. In her safe she holds cheques once forged by Corbett and, while she is alive, he must remain within her service. To gain their freedom, the two men contemplate murdering Mrs Garth. One weekend their plans become reality with chilling consequences.


Theatrical Release: May 5th, 1965 (USA)


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DVD Review: Network - Region 2 - PAL

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Region 2 - PAL

Runtime 1:26:44 (4% PAL speedup)

1.66:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 6.0 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.


Audio English 2.0
Subtitles None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Network

Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1

Edition Details:
• Image Gallery
• Promotional Material PDF

DVD Release Date: August 25th, 2014
Slim, transparent Amaray Case

Chapters 10



More Network DVDs DVDBeaver has reviewed:

Bang! You're Dead

Assassin For Hire

Dead Lucky

Deadly Record

Do You Know This Voice

The Night Won't Talk



Horrors of the Black Museum

Noose For a Lady

Wrong Number

Cat Girl

Catacombs Death is a Woman

Home at Seven


The long Dark Hall

The Teckman Mystery

Circle of Danger

The House in the Woods

The Terrornauts


The Man Who Finally Died


Crime on the Hill Manuela

Crossroads to Crime

Murder Without Crime

Silent Dust

The Brain Machine

Who Killed Teddy Bear


Edgar Wallace Mysteries Edgar Wallace Mysteries Vol. 1 Edgar Wallace Mysteries Vol. 2 Edgar Wallace Mysteries Vol. 3 Edgar Wallace Mysteries Vol. 4 Edgar Wallace Mysteries Vol. 5 Edgar Wallace Mysteries Vol. 6 Edgar Wallace Mysteries Vol. 7




I enjoyed Catacombs, a simple noir-leaning, flic from Hitchcockian protégée Gordon Hessler - about a 'kept' man and his exposed dalliance with his niece-in-law resulting in the subsequent murder of his gently domineering, and partially invalid, wife.... and the consequences thereof. I only wish it was longer.

The image is a decent single-layered PAL SD transfer from Network in the UK. Progressive and anamorphic in the 1.66:1 aspect ratio. It looks consistent and, generally, appealing with approvable detail and contrast that helps exhibit some minor depth. Audio is likewise acceptable with all dialogue audible and the Brit accents none-too-heavy. There are no subtitles on the region 2-locked disc.

Extras include an image gallery and promotional PDF in the root of the disc.

The bottom-line endorsement involves the reasonable price and entertaining pot-boiler-ish crime, with hints of horror, drama. I think this would be something I would eventually revisit. Recommended!

  - Gary Tooze


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