The Case of the Bloody Iris Blu-ray Review
aka Why Those Strange Drops of Blood on Jennifer's Body?
The Case of the Bloody Iris Film Review
Giallo regulars Edwige Fenech and George Hilton reunite after Sergio Martino's All the Colours of the Dark for another 1972 murder mystery outing.Certainly an acquired taste, if you're into your Italian psycho horror - Giallo-style - then The Case of the Bloody Iris (a slightly better, if even more opaque, title than the literal translation of the Italian title: Why Those Strange Drops of Blood on Jennifer's Body?) is a solid enough entry.
Crafted in 1972 by director Giuliano Carnimeo who, up until that point, had more experience with Spaghetti Westerns including a quartet of Sartana projects, The Case of the Bloody Iris would reunite Carnimeo with his go-to star George Hilton (who he'd worked with several times over the preceding years) who, in turn, would be reunited with genre regular Edwige Fenech, an impossibly beautiful scream queen who deserved far more than what this limited field offered.
Its subtext of the exploitation of women would be arguably slightly better received if it weren't so ostensibly exploitative itself.
The story follows a spate of murders occurring in an apartment block, drawing the attention of the building's architect, just as he's falling for one of its tenants, who also happened to be the latest target for the serial killer.
The Case of the Bloody Iris is as stylishly shot as any of these Giallo, boasting some interesting cinematography that defines expectations from this low budget genre, and tries its best to provide more than just the average naked bodies and bloody murders - although it has those in spades. Its subtext of the exploitation of women would be arguably slightly better received if it weren't so ostensibly exploitative itself (a trait shared by Orson Welles' previously lost but recently discovered gem, The Other Side of the Wind, which similarly enjoyed naked women a little too much to be convincing as some kind of message against the exploitation and/or depiction of women in the industry). Nevertheless genre fans are going to lap it up either way.
The Case of the Bloody Iris Blu-ray PictureShameless Entertainment bring The Case of the Bloody Iris to UK Region B-locked Blu-ray complete with a frequently strong but also frequently flawed 1080p/AVC-encoded High Definition video presentation, framed in the movie's original theatrical aspect ratio of 2.4:1 widescreen, and purportedly from a brand new 2K scan and privy to 'extensive restoration' courtesy of Shameless.
The image is far from consistent.
It's easy to believe that this is the best that the film has - and likely ever will - look, with some excellent close-ups exhibiting superior fine detail and skin textures, a lovingly reproduced colour scheme that enjoys all the myriad tones on offer, and keen representation of some imaginatively filmed sequences. At its height, it is also easy to see how this must have come from a new scan. However the image is far from consistent, more often than not lapsing into softness, with compression issues, possibly even over-enthusiastic DNR application, and even signs of print damage - particularly in the exterior sequences.
The standout shots are simply not prevalent enough to regard this as a striking success on the restoration front, although - at the same time - the original source shoot and possibly questionable state the print was in could have easily contributed to the current end results, leaving fans with the best they could possibly hope for, even if it's far from a resounding success.
The Case of the Bloody Iris Blu-ray SoundThe accompanying lossless Linear PCM mono soundtrack options are both solid efforts - affording the feature an original Italian track with optional English subtitles (that are translated from the Italian, rather than merely the words from the English dub) as well as an English dub, both enjoying the same solid presentation and coverage of the enthusiastic score.
A solid and faithful representation of the source material.
Dialogue remains prioritised across the array - understandably all of the elements are frontally-biased - whilst effects are limited to nominal atmospherics reflecting smashing glass, ancient ringing rotary phones, bustling clubs, rumbling car engines and slashing blades. Screams penetrate, whilst the tinkering score beneath gets decent presentation, despite hitting a few irritatingly high notes. It's a solid and faithful representation of the source material.
The Case of the Bloody Iris Blu-ray ExtrasAside from a couple of trailers, we get Interviews with stars George Hilton and Paola Quattrini.
The Case of the Bloody Iris Blu-ray VerdictShameless' package should please fans.
Shameless continue their run of lesser-known 70s titles with this Giallo psycho thriller starring genre beauty Edwige Fenech. The competent but still low-bar mystery tries its best to be stylish, within the constraints of its budget and scope, but is still for aficionados only, and Shameless' package should please most fans even if it doesn't live up to the expectations generated by the notion of a 'brand new 2K scan and extensive restoration work'.
Suggested retail price when reviewed: £14.99
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