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Deep Red 4K UHD Review

“Deep Red” is peak Dario Argento.

In 1975’s “Deep Red” (AKA “Profondo Rosso”), a pianist (Marcus) witnesses the murder of a psychic (Helga) by an unknown assailant. After being in Helga’s house, he thinks a painting has gone missing from the scene of the crime and so he begins to investigate himself alongside a whip smart reporter (Gianna). As they start poking around, they encounter clues in the form of a creepy children’s song and an abandoned house. Alas, the more they start uncovering, the closer the killer (or killers?) get to them.

Directed by Dario Argento and written by Argento and Bernardino Zapponi, “Deep Red” is the quintessential giallo film. Some might even argue it’s the best giallo film ever made (and Argento’s best giallo film to boot). Giallo, for those that don’t know, is a sort of mixture between horror, mystery, thriller and noir. All the tropes of the genre are present here with murder, blood, bright colors, POV shots, black gloves, weapons, a mysterious killer, and a truly eerie jazz-rock score by Goblin and Giorgio Gaslini (possibly my favorite work for Goblin). Although the plot bears resemblance to “The Bird With The Crystal Plumage,” “Deep Red” is the better movie. It’s a deranged psychological tale about trauma, the past, family, and obsession. It’s the type of movie that keeps you glued to the screen until the end reveal where everything becomes clear (another giallo staple).

Dario Argento’s stylish direction shines as bright as the red blood here. The way he frames images like a creepy doll has always been striking, but the gliding camera shots are what really stick out to me the most. The camera is almost a character itself in its fluid and atmospheric movements.

Cast wise, David Hemmings may be the capable star (although I think the character of Marcus is a bit too much of a jerk), but Daria Nicolodi as Gianna steals the movie as the nosy reporter.

Note: This set contains the 127 minute Italian version and the 105 minute export version.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 2.35:1 2160p. How does the movie look? Both cuts have been given a 4K restoration from the original negatives and the results are splendid. The rich colors look more striking than ever in 4K.

Audio Track: Italian and English Lossless Mono and Italian 5.1 Lossless for the Theatrical version and an English/Italian Mono Track for the Export version. How do they sound?  The English and Italian Mono tracks are clean on both cuts, but I was quite partial to the Italian 5.1 track if for no other reason than the electric score really pops on this particular track. Viewers also have the option of playing English subtitles for both the Italian and English original versions.

Extras:
* Double-sided poster
* US theatrical trailer, Italian trailer, and 2018 Arrow Video trailer of “Deep Red.”
* A booklet with credits, restoration info and essays by Alan Jones, Mikel J. Koven, Rachael Nisbet.
* 5 art cards
* A 2011 intro by Claudio Simonetti.
* 2 commentaries. One new track by film critics Troy Howarth and Nathaniel Thompson and an archival track by Dario Argento expert  Thomas Rostock.
* Posters, lobby cards, promo stills, Japanese pressbook and flyer and soundtracks image galleries.
* 6 2018 interviews with actors Gabriele Lavia, Jacopo Mariani, Lino Capolicchio, Macha Meril, composer Claudio Simonetti, and production manager Angelo Iacono
* A 2018 interview with Director Dario Argento along with an archival interview of actress Daria Nicolodi.
* A tour of the Profondo Rosso shop with Luigi Cozzi.
* A visual essay by Michael Mackenzie about the themes and legacy of “Deep Red.”
* “Rosso Recollections”- An interview with Dario Argento about “Deep Red.”

October 28, 2021 - Posted by | 4K UHD Review | , , , , , ,

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