Written by: Michael Den Boer on August 7th, 2006
Theatrical Release Dates: Italy, 2005
Director: Dario Argento
Cast: Elio Germano, Chiara Conti, Elisabetta Rocchetti, Cristina Brondo, Iván Morales
DVD released: August 15th, 2006
Approximate running time: 89 mins
Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo English
DVD Release: Anchor Bay
Region Coding: Region 1 NTSC
Retail Price: $19.98
Synopsis: Giulio is a film student who is writing his main thesis on German expressionism. In his spare time he has another hobby where he likes to watch beautiful girls. A chance encounter at a video store entangles Giulio is in murder mystery which has a striking resemblance to the plot of Alfred Hitchcock’s Stranger’s on the Train. Will he be able to solve the mystery before he becomes the killer’s next target?
Dario Argento for the last thirty five years has been making some of most terrifying thrillers. His distinct visual style which often employs visceral murder set pieces that are accentuated by vivid colors sets him apart from virtually all of his contemporaries. His technique has become more refined through the years by returning to more character driven plots his most recent films like The Card Player and Do You like Hitchcock? This shift away from his more baroque and violent films like Opera and Suspiria has lead many Argento fans wanting more.
Do You Like Hitchcock is Dario Argento’s tribute to the films of Alfred Hitchcock. The plot which was written by Argento and his long time collaborator Franco Ferrini is a collection of Hitchcock’s greatest moments and they have been cleverly assemble into a cohesive story that is an impressive thriller in its own right. Do You like Hitchcock if filled with a lo of dark humor which Hitchcock was known for and it is cool to Argento kind of let loose and have more light hearted moments to help balance out the darker ones.
The films English dub leaves a lot to be desired and the film does play better in Italian. Pino Donaggio’s seductive score feature some of his best work in years. Frederic Fasano’s cinematography is visually appealing and at times is reminiscent of classic Argento style. Elio Germano is the perfect choice for the films lead Giulio as he perfectly embodies the everyman type actor played so many times by James Stewart in several Hitchcock films. The scenes that are the most appealing in the film are the ones in which Giulio spies on the various characters who are integral to the murder mystery. It is amazing what Aregnto is able to achieve when one considers that it was made for television. Overall Do You like Hitchcock is daring and provocative film that exceeded my expectations.
Anchor Bay presents Do You like Hitchcock in an anamorphic widescreen that preserves the films original 1.66:1 aspect ratio. Colors are vivid and nicely saturated through out. Black levels are strong and details look razor sharp. There are no problems with compression or artifacts.
This release comes with one audio option an English dubbed audio track which is presented in a Dolby Digital Stereo. There are no problems with distortion or any other sound defects. Dialog is crisp and easy to follow. The music and effects sound full and evenly balanced.
Extras for this release include trailers for The Masters of Horror Series, Suspiria, Opera, The Card Player and Trauma. All of these titles are currently available or soon to be released on DVD from Anchor Bay. Other extras include an extensive bio for Dario Argento which also includes his filmography. Rounding out the extras is a six minute behind the scenes featurette titled “Do You Like Hitchcock?: Backstage”. Overall Anchor Bay’s Do You like Hitchcock DVD while light on extras comes with a stunning audio/video presentation, recommended.