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Anton Walbrook , Diana Wynyard , George Cukor , Thorold Dickinson    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 49.33
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Gaslight + Philadelphia Story
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Product Description


George Cukor helped transform a moody Victorian stage melodrama (previously filmed in Britain in 1939) into a gothic Hollywood romantic thriller. Ingrid Bergman stars as a meek, uncertain heiress courted and married in a whirlwind romance by the debonair Charles Boyer, but when they move back into her childhood home she begins losing her grip on reality and becomes convinced that her husband is trying to drive her insane. Joseph Cotten, rather stiff and colorless next to the anguished Bergman and charming and lively Boyer, is the heroic Scotland Yard detective who becomes enamored of the skittish woman who is slowly succumbing to madness. The grand, glorious sets and elegant photography recall Hitchcock's Rebecca, another lush Hollywood gothic melodrama of a retiring young wife overwhelmed by the history of her abode, and Gaslight is still assumed by some to be a Hitchcock film (the Bergman connection doesn't help the confusion). It's really a rather straightforward thriller with a forced plot device, but under Cukor's control the tightly constructed script is given the full MGM treatment, then reined in for intimate moments of harrowing suspense. Boyer brilliantly played off his continental lover reputation by adding an undercurrent of malevolence and Bergman won an Oscar for her haunted performance. It also marks the memorable debut of Angela Lansbury as a saucy maid unwittingly drawn into Boyer's master plan. --Sean Axmaker

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Haunting and Gorgeous!!! July 11 2004
The DVD release of Gaslight is terrific. The inclusion of both film versions is a great treat because both films are definitely worth seeing; perhaps they even deserve a back to back viewing. The 1944 version is somewhat superior because of the casting, but there are some terrific things, storywise, in the 1940 version that fare better.
The plot is simple yet satisfying: An unstable woman and her husband move back into her childhood home, where a murder had taken place years earlier. She slowly begins losing grip on reality and becomes convinced that her husband is trying to drive her insane. Or is he? It adds up to a diabolical, atmospheric thriller, which won Bergman her first, but not last, Oscar.
By today's standards GASLIGHT may be seen as slow-moving and obvious. But no modern film can match this picture's intricate psychology. Beautifully filmed in a gloomy, atmospheric black-and-white, GASLIGHT exhibits all the classic visual elements of '40s film noir. The attention to detail is more obvious than in many modern films and heightens the suspense. The benighted streets of London are cloaked with fog, and the large, lonely house where most of the action takes place, is filled with shadows and strange noises. The paranoid, claustrophobic world of Paula's confinement is also effectively conveyed. This is the kind of effectively-crafted, well-acted motion picture that rises above its faults to earn its "classic" appellation. It's a must!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Gaslight COLORIZED?!?!?!?!? Jan. 30 2004
As I have already reviewed this amazingly great film (11/21/03), which is easily in my top ten list, after being parched for it on DVD for years now, I will not repeat myself here. But I was aghast that the product info states that this version will be released in "color". Does that mean colorized? Could this be true, or is it an error? If it is, someone at the wheel at Amazon or the studio needs to correct this before my heart really does stop beating! If this is true, it would be one of the most appallingly egregious and moronic marketing moves ever undertaken. Say it ain't so!!!!
PS from 4/8/04. Ooops! This version is NOT colorized, and the DVD package and quality are just fantastic after all. As Roseanne Rosannadanna said, "Never mind!"
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Remarkable and haunting Aug. 21 2011
At the beginning we see Paula Alquist (Ingrid Bergman) in her singing lessons. She has fallen in love. Unfortunately for her, her lover, Gregory Anton (Charles Boyer), wants to move to London, the very place that Paula's aunt was murdered.

She loves him enough to tell him that her aunt left her a house in London. Soon after, they get married and move there. Unfortunately for her, he's not as he once seemed.

We see Paula getting driven mad by her husband. She does not leave the house, she does not have any friends. The best part about this film was that everything was done so gradually and the husband acted in such a way that Paula didn't even realise what was happening.

What is Paula's husband after?

An impressive film.

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5.0 out of 5 stars A crafty, well-made thriller July 11 2004
By gac1003
Young Paula Alquist witnesses the murder of her Aunt Alice, a world-reknowned opera singer, in her own house. On the advice of family and friends, Paula moves out of the country, to live with a family friend. After many years, she falls in love with Gregory Anton, and he convinces her to move back into her Aunt's house. Nothign has changed since she left 10 years ago, but Gregoy persuades her to remove her Aunt's belongings in order to keep those painful memories at bay. Soon after moving in, though, strange things start to happen. The gaslights mysteriously dim each night, followed by strange noises coming from the closed off upper floor. Paula begins to lose and to misplace things, convinced by Gregory that she must rest or the strain would get to her. On one of their few outings, for she is somewhat unstable around the outside world, a strange recognizes her and soon discovers that things are not as they seem and that her husband maybe up to something involving her Aunt's hidden jewels which have never been found.
Director George Cukor presents a remarkably thrilling film, with superb acting from Ingrid Bergman (in an Oscar-winning performance) as Paula Alquist, Chalres Boyer as her mysterious husband Gregory Anton, Joseph Cotten as Inspector Brian Cameron, and Angela Lansbury in her first screen role as the maid Nancy Oliver. The captivating story of a woman struggling to maintain her sanity is marvelously portrayed on-screen. Bergman fills her character with enough frayed nerves and self-doubt that you feel right along with her. Boyer is both menacing and debonair and gives off just the right amount of malice to make you bite your nails as you watch the film.
This is a first-rate thriller that will keep you glued to the screen!
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By Nix Pix
I am going to make you believe that you are mad and then push you over the edge of sanity. With those intensions, Gregory Anton (Charles Boyer) sets out to destroy his wife, Paula's (Ingrid Bergman) mental stability in "Gaslight"(1944). Greg's reasoning? - Paula's dead aunt, his former lover, has hidden a fortune in jewels somewhere in the house which Paula now owns. I suppose Greg could have just sent Paula to the music hall to get her out of the way, but then the prospects for high melodrama and intense suspense wouldn't have been nearly as diabolical or as fun.
The film opens on one of MGM's spooky and unsettling soundstages, gussied up to look like a typical English square. From one of the brownstones a distraught Paula is taken away, having just discovered her aunt's horribly mangled body inside. In a state of shock, Paula is sent to Florence where she falls in love with a piano player, Gregory Anton. The two married. Returning to London, Paula and Gregory set up housekeeping in her aunt's old house. However, not long afterward Paula begins to become increasingly absentminded - or does she. Priceless antiques are moved, paintings are switched on the walls and a broach belonging to Gregory's mother vanishes without a trace. Gregory, growing increasingly impatient with Paula's emerging psychosis (actually he's upset how long its taking to drive her crazy), leaves her alone each night, presumably to go off and paint portraits (his profession). Actually, he sneaks around the back of their house, reentering from an adjacent attic into theirs to search for the aunt's missing jewels. The tap, tap, tapping on Paula's bedroom ceiling and the sudden lowering of gaslights are attributed to figments of Paula's growing mental instability.
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Most recent customer reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Bad Seller ***WARNING***
I ordered this DVD but when I watched it wasn'T Ingrid who was Playing in this movie! Even if her face is on the Cover!! Please Everyone Don't purchase it if it's for Ingrid :O!
Published on April 4 2011 by July
5.0 out of 5 stars My Favorite Thriller!!!!!
I love this Movie!I first decided to watch this when I found out Angela Lansbury was in it,because she is my favorite actress. Read more
Published on May 15 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars a matter of perspective
Well, I beg to differ with the Amazon reviews. The thing that makes this extra creepy is that our young, uncertain heiress fully believes she can trust her new husband. Read more
Published on May 2 2004 by Laura Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars NOT a colorized version
The Amazon listing is incorrect, and the photo of the DVD must use an old theatre poster as the artwork. Read more
Published on Feb. 17 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars THE 1940 UK VERSION is way better
I have waited for this movie to be released for a long time on dvd.
Now after almost 30 years i get to see the Uk version which is on the flip side of GASLIGHT. Read more
Published on Feb. 16 2004 by Stuart Scott-davis
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Finally such an amazing movie appears on DVD! It is no wonder Ingrid Bergman won the Academy Award for this film. Read more
Published on Feb. 3 2004 by C. D Pulaski
5.0 out of 5 stars Hallelujah!
GASLIGHT is finally on DVD! And not just the 1944 suspense classic. This edition includes the complete British GASLIGHT made just a few years before in 1940. Read more
Published on Jan. 24 2004 by Mark Hite
1.0 out of 5 stars What is Warner Bros. thinking?
Is Warner Bros. really releasing classic films like "Gaslight", "Grand Hotel", "Mrs. Miniver", "Mutiny On The Bounty" and "The Great Ziegfeld" in COLORIZED versions. Read more
Published on Jan. 11 2004 by David C. McMillan
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