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Old 10-04-2004, 12:58 AM
 
Scored: 10
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Four Sided Triangle





Reviewer: HammerFanatic
Review Date: August 20, 2000

Released by: Anchor Bay Entertainment
Release date: 7/11/2000
MSRP: $29.98
Region 1, NTSC
Full Frame 1.37:1
1953


This early foray into the sci-fi realm, helped pave the way for future films, so let's take a look at.....Four Sided Triangle.

The Story

inline ImageThe film opens with the narration by a village doctor (James Hayter) and his involvement with three children from the village. Robin, a young man who lives a life of wealth and has his life already planned for him, Bill, a young man who is known throughout the village as a lad who's father was the village drunk and was killed in a barroom brawl and finally, Lena, the young girl that has drawn the affections of both Robin and Bill.

inline ImageDr. Harvey continues telling the story and next we see all three children as adults. Robin (John Van Eyssen) and Bill (Stephen Murray) are fresh from college and working together, as Bill with all that he had against him, is a genius and Lena (Barbara Payton) has returned from the United States as somewhat of a failure, not succeeding at anything she's attempted. The two young men take on Lena as an assistant and both men still have deep feelings of love for Lena. One evening, the invention the three have worked on together is ready for show and they bring Doc to the abandoned barn to see their masterpiece. What the three have managed to build is a "reproducer", a machine that can reproduce anything in the world and they bring Robin's father to the barn to show him in the hope that he will help finance their continuing work. The elder Grant is more than pleased and they all enjoy a celebration dinner at the Grant's estate. It's there that Robin and Lena announce their engagement. Bill is crushed, but continues his work while Robin and Lena marry and honeymoon.

inline ImageBill explains to Doc that he wants to *reproduce* a Lena for himself and the two of them convince Lena to do this for Bill. She is hesitant at first, but agrees when it becomes apparent to her, just how much Bill loves her. She agrees and the experiment is done, unbeknownst to Robin.

What happens next is both exciting and sad as the experiment is a success.....too successful! You'll need to watch this film to see what happens when a love triangle becomes a four-sided affair.

Image Quality

The Four-Sided Triangle is shown in it's Full-Frame, 1.37:1 presentation for this DVD. It was filmed in black and white as well. Considering this film is nearly fifty years old, it really isn't bad looking at all and I wouldn't expect it to receive the same attention as some of the better known Hammer films. There are some problems with the transfer, the black levels don't remain constant and there are numerous times when the film actually seems to go out of focus. The picture isn't razor sharp, but not too soft that it detracts from the enjoyment of the film, either. I saw minimal print damage, in fact, I expected more, considering the age of this film.

Sound

The sound for this film is presented in 2 channel mono. The range is nice for this mix and the bass for the score is a pleasant surprise. Malcolm Arnold wrote the original music for this film and while not as commanding as later scores by James Bernard, there is an overall haunting feeling to the score.

Supplemental Material

inline ImageVery little in the way of extras with this release. We only see the standard, World of Hammer episode narrated by, Oliver Reed. This episode is entitled, The Curse of Frankenstein and covers many of the Hammer films dedicated to the Frankenstein story. The following films are covered in this episode: The Curse of Frankenstein, The Revenge of Frankenstein, The Evil of Frankenstein, The Four-Sided Triangle, The Horror of Frankenstein, Frankenstein and the Monster From Hell.

Final Thoughts

The first time I viewed this film, I was pleasantly surprised, as having read a brief synopsis of the film, I wasn't sure it would appeal to my tastes, but it is a very good film. It's almost a combination of the original 1958 version of, The Fly and Bride of Frankenstein. The story is well written and Terence Fisher was directing this, so you'll always enjoy a great film with him at the helm. The cast was wonderful in their respective roles and the story was both interesting and exciting to watch unfold. For something a bit different from the standard Hammer fare, I'd recommend checking this film out!

Rating

.
Movie B

Image Quality B-

Sound B-

Supplements C




Technical Info.
  • Running Time - 1 hour 21 minutes
  • B&W
  • Not Rated
  • 1 Disc
  • 15 Chapter Stops
  • Dolby Digital Mono
Supplements
  • World of Hammer episode entitled The Curse of Frankenstein
  • Includes 5"x7" Poster Facsimile
Other Pictures

 


Last edited by Jeremy; 11-16-2008 at 02:16 AM..
 

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