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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "House of Fright")

 

Directed by Terence Fisher
UK 1960

 

In Victorian London, Dr. Henry Jekyll experiments with drugs in an attempt to separate the good and evil natures of man. One night he injects himself with his personality-changing serum, and the somber Jekyll is transformed into the debonair Mr. Hyde. He visits the Sphinx, a West End nightclub, where he encounters Jekyll's neglected wife, Kitty, dancing with his close friend, Paul Allen, an inveterate gambler. Though Jekyll tries to submerge the evil nature of Hyde, he cannot prevent himself from plotting Paul's death, and he lures his former friend into the dressing room of Maria, a snake dancer.

***

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

***

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.

Posters

Theatrical Release: August 18th, 1960

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Comparison:

Sony - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Millcreek - Region 'A' - Blu-ray vs. Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray

Box Cover

 

Part of Indicator's Hammer Volume Four: Faces of Fear with THE REVENGE OF FRANKENSTEIN, THE TWO FACES OF DR. JEKYLL, TASTE OF FEAR, THE DAMNED:

Distribution Sony - Region 1 - NTSC Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:28:06         1:28:16.708 1:28:16.332
Video 2.35:1 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 

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

Total Video Bitrate: 17.00 Mbps

2.35:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 41,354,586,646 bytes

Feature: 25,993,406,016 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.93 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

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

Bitrate DVD:

Bitrate Millcreek Blu-ray:

Bitrate Indicator Blu-ray:

Audio English (original mono) Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps / DN -4dB

LPCM Audio English 1152 kbps 1.0 / 48 kHz / 1152 kbps / 24-bit
Commentary:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Subtitles English, None None English, 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

Release Information:
Studio:
Indicator

 

2.35:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 41,354,586,646 bytes

Feature: 25,993,406,016 bytes

Video Bitrate: 34.93 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

• Audio commentary with film historians Josephine Botting and Jonathan Rigby (2019)
Identity Crisis: Inside ‘The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll’ (2019, 18:48): new and exclusive documentary, featuring Alan Barnes, Kevin Lyons and Jonathan Rigby, exploring aspects of the film’s production
• Hammer’s Women: Dawn Addams (2019, 10:13): profile of the Hammer star by British cinema expert Laura Mayne
• Interview with Paul Massie (1967, 9:32): archival audio recording of the film’s star
• Now and Then: Wolf Mankowitz (1968, 31:36): archival interview featuring the screenwriter in conversation with broadcaster Bernard Braden
• Mauve Decadence (2019, 10:19): appreciation of composer Monty Norman’s score by David Huckvale, the author of Hammer Film Scores and the Musical Avant-Garde
• The Many Faces of Dr. Jekyll (2019, 6:48): an overview of the censorship history of The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll
• Original theatrical trailer (2:27)
Sam Hamm trailer commentary (2013, 3:12): short critical appreciation
• Image gallery: promotional and publicity materials
Limited edition exclusive 36-page booklet with a new essay by Kat Ellinger, a selection of promotional materials, an overview of contemporary reviews, and film credits


Blu-ray Release Date:
November 25th, 2019
Custom Blu-ray Package (see below)

Chapters 12

 

 

Comments:

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

ADDITION: Indicator Blu-ray (October 2019): Indicator have transferred Terence Fisher's The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll to 1080P Blu-ray. It is part of Indicator's Hammer Volume Four: Faces of Fear with THE REVENGE OF FRANKENSTEIN, THE TWO FACES OF DR. JEKYLL, TASTE OF FEAR and THE DAMNED. The indicator, with double the bitrate of the Millcreek, shows a far superior image in notably richer and deeper colors. It's another 'no contest', really with contrast and detail advancing over the softer, less-effectual, US 1080P transfer.

On their Blu-ray, Indicator use a linear PCM mono track (24-bit) in the original English language also advancing over the puny lossy Dolby of the Millcreek. The soundtrack is credited to David Heneker (Bongo Boy) and Monty Norman (Expresso Bongo, From Russia with Love, The Day the Earth Caught Fire) - best known for his "James Bond Theme" from Dr. No (1962), which is used in every James Bond Movie as part of the opening credits.) It sounds very clear and flat carrying minor depth. Indicator offer optional English (SDH) subtitles on their Region 'A' Blu-ray.

The Indicator Blu-ray has extensive supplements starting with another, new, expert audio commentary with film historians Josephine Botting and Jonathan Rigby (author of English Gothic.) They starts with discussing the lurid opening credits giving an indication that it was not a standard Hammer Horror - a motion picture of many moods, the costuming, stars etc.. They include another new and exclusive documentary; Identity Crisis: Inside ‘The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll’ a 19-minute 2019 video featuring Alan Barnes, Kevin Lyons and Jonathan Rigby, exploring aspects of the film’s production. We get another chapter of Hammer’s Women this one about Dawn Addams (Kitty Jekyll) . It is a new 10-minute profile of the Hammer star by British cinema expert, the enchanting, Laura Mayne giving some interesting background on the actress. There is an archival audio recording (10-minutes) with the film’s star Paul Massie from 1967. Now and Then: Wolf Mankowitz is a 1/2 hour, 1968, archival interview featuring the screenwriter in conversation with broadcaster Bernard Braden. Mauve Decadence is a new 10-minute appreciation of composer Monty Norman’s score by David Huckvale, the author of Hammer Film Scores and the Musical Avant-Garde. The Many Faces of Dr. Jekyll is a new 7-minute overview of the censorship history of The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll. There is an original theatrical trailer and a 'TFH' Sam Hamm trailer commentary from 2013, as a short critical appreciation. Lastly is an image gallery of promotional and publicity materials and the package has a limited edition exclusive 36-page booklet with a new essay by Kat Ellinger, a selection of promotional materials, an overview of contemporary reviews, and film credits.

This is another of the infinitely re-watchable Hammer films. The Two Faces of Dr. Jekyll has a lot going for it with Terence Fisher at the helm and the unique take on the Robert Louis Stevenson story. This is another very strong reason to indulge in Indicator's  Hammer Volume Four: Faces of Fear Blu-ray. set. Don't hesitate. 

Gary Tooze

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

 


Sony - Region 1 - NTSC

 

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

Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray


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

 

1) Sony - Region 1 - NTSC  TOP

2) Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Sony - Region 1 - NTSC  TOP

2) Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Sony - Region 1 - NTSC  TOP

2) Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Sony - Region 1 - NTSC  TOP

2) Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray MIDDLE

3) Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 


1) Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 


1) Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray TOP

2) Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray BOTTOM

 

 

More Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray Captures
 

 


 

 


 

 


Box Cover

 

Part of Indicator's Hammer Volume Four: Faces of Fear with THE REVENGE OF FRANKENSTEIN, THE TWO FACES OF DR. JEKYLL, TASTE OF FEAR, THE DAMNED:

Distribution Sony - Region 1 - NTSC Mill Creek Entertainment - Region 'A' - Blu-ray Indicator - Region FREE - Blu-ray


 


 

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Gary Tooze

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