The Wrong Man Blu-ray Review
You can’t go wrong with a Hitchcock movie.
For years, Warner Archive has been releasing films of all types. Whether you love cartoons, classic films, TV series or modern indies, they have got you covered. Now, in 2016, they have quietly released a new Blu-ray edition of an Alfred Hitchcock classic (“The Wrong Man”) that is sure to please film buffs and classic movie lovers.
“The Wrong Man” is different than the usual Hitchcock film in that it’s based on a true story. The plot concerns a kind hearted musician/family man (Christopher) who is barely scraping by. One day, after trying to get a loan, he is taken in by the police for questioning. You see, he has been wrongfully mistaken for a local thief but those who have encountered the actual thief swear Christopher is the man who did it. Things only get worse for poor Christopher amidst a stream of coincidences, bad luck, and tragedies involving his wife Rose. Can Christopher prove his innocence and get his family back together?
In this day and age, distrust of authority has become a frequent topic of conversation so it’s interesting to look at a film from 1956 that explores this subject. In addition to covering that topic, “The Wrong Man” is also a serious and often heartbreaking tale of injustice, mistaken identity, and human error. It’s the type of film that is so intentionally aggravating to watch knowing that we are seeing a family being torn apart by the ultimate nightmare scenario. This is never more evident than in the character of Rose who has a mental breakdown.
While Hitchcock himself provides his predictably great artistic touches, it is Henry Fonda and Vera Miles that make the film come to life. Fonda aces the role of Christopher. You really buy him as the innocent everyman whose life is unjustly turned upside down. The most interesting performance here comes from Vera Miles who plays Christopher’s devoted wife (Rose). The character path of Rose is a fascinating albeit disheartening one as she becomes consumed by doubt, guilt, heartbreak and eventually mental illness. She really showcased the effects this ordeal had on Christopher’s life and family.
Presentation: 1.85:1 1080p. How does it look? The transfer of this classic B&W is hit-and-miss. The picture is fuzzier than I would like and there are noticeable flickers here and there. Still, it is a nice upgrade from past releases and the lighting does look quite noteworthy on Blu-ray.
Audio Track: 2.0 DTS-HD. How does it sound? Really strong. A nice crisp hi-def audio track.
* Theatrical trailer.
* “Guilt Trip: Hitchcock and The Wrong Man”- Filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich and others talk about the film and its themes, Alfred Hitchcock, the script, the production, and more in this 20 minute featurette.
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