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Pretty Poison '68

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Product Details

  • Actors: Anthony Perkins, Tuesday Weld, Beverly Garland, John Randolph, Dick O'Neill
  • Directors: Noel Black
  • Writers: Lorenzo Semple Jr., Stephen Geller
  • Producers: Noel Black, Jack Grossberg, Lawrence Turman, Marshall Backlar
  • Format: Color, DVD-Video, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: R
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
  • Release Date: Sept. 5 2006
  • Run Time: 89 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • ASIN: B000G6BLY2
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #45,646 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

Newly released from a mental institution, arsonist Dennis Pitt (Anthony Perkins), seeks a new life for himself in a charming Massachusetts town. And when he meets Sue Ann Stepanek (Tuesday Weld), a beautiful all-American cheerleader, he decides to impress her by posing as a CIA agent. His false persona is seductive to Sue Ann, and in fact, her innocence begins to fade as she becomes more and more enthralled with Pitt’s tales of violence. Ultimately, the cheerleader and the ex-convict become a duo capable of doing anything to get what they want – even murder – in this exciting psychological drama with exceptional acting and an explosive ending you won’t want to miss!

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa01543b4) out of 5 stars 40 reviews
24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa0186e64) out of 5 stars "PSYCHO" MEETS HIS MATCH Sept. 19 2006
By Robin Simmons - Published on
Format: DVD
1968's PRETTY POISON starring Anthony "Psycho" Perkins and former teen tease Tuesday Weld is a much-wanted cult fave not on DVD in Region 1 (USA). With no fanfare, it's now available as a Region 1 but without director Noel Black's better than average commentary on the Region 2 import (Amazon UK).

Adapted by Lorenzo Semple, Jr., from Stephen Geller's twisted love story "She Let Him Continue," opens with Perkins' Dennis Pitt being released from a psychiatric institution or prison for committing arson. The probation officer warns: "You're going into a real, tough world. It's no place for fantasies." First thing Dennis sees when he settles in a small town is seductive, pouty Sue Ann Stepanek (Weld), a girl with serious attitude problems, in her majorette outfit. Uh oh.

This deliciously demented black comedy focuses on what happens when two pathologies collide. It's a forerunner to movies like Bonnie and Clyde, Badlands and Blue Velvet.

Perkins and Weld have great chemistry as the two dodgy lovebirds. She merrily lets him pretend he's a CIA agent but deviously manipulates his fantasies to her own ends.

Beverly Garland is Weld's sexually charged, domineering mom. But it's Perkins and Weld at their best that make this rare gem from the 60s worth finding. I liked director Noel Black's forthright commentary on the Region 2 version (Amazon UK). Wonder why it's missing on the US version?

Rated: R (Originally X in the UK). Genre: Crime Thriller/Romance. 1 Hour, 29 Minutes. Starring: Tuesday Weld, Anthony Perkins, Beverly Garland. Director: Noel Black
24 of 28 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa0186eb8) out of 5 stars Tuesday Weld is incredible...!!! Sept. 12 2006
By Hitman777 - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Two talented actors, Anthony Perkins and Tuesday Weld really make this movie shine. It's a long-overdue release, and if you've never seen this under-rated and lesser-known gem, do yourself a favor and check it out!

Tuesday Weld smokes in this, playing a young girl whose initial, apparent innocence proves too much for Anthony Perkins who is perfect as a troubled young man who is caught in his own fantasy-world.

I'm so happy this has finally been released! I've enjoyed it in late-night airings for years on television.

Now if only "The Shuttered Room" will get released, I can die a happy man!
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa018d1b0) out of 5 stars "Pretty Poison" - Deadly but Not Arresting Nov. 9 2006
By V. Risoli - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
"Pretty Poison" has had a very rough life, originally released in 1968, was considered faithlessly by 20th Century-Fox, its studio that it was dumped into the latter part of a double-bill initially and given that lurid title. Lorenzo Semple, Jr. wrote the screenplay (of TV's "Batman" fame) and wrote it well. Tuesday Weld, perhaps a bit too old to play a high school teen was superb and took home a few awards for this part, even though she finds her part regretable and held a dislike for the director, Noel Black, who made a very impressive feature debut with this film. The images are sumptuous and the look and feel of the film are flawless. Anthony Perkins is also cast opposite Tuesday for a pairing that was charasmatic, repeated several years later in "Play It As It Lays." The critics that came to bat for "Pretty Poison" upon its release used it as a cause for "the sleeper" (which found long-running homes for movies like "Night of the Living Dead" and "Rider on the Rain" (which needs a better DVD pressing, guys). The Lawrence Turman production is top calibre all the way with Tuesday unspeakably delicious as the cheerleader, an actress long-overdue for honors.
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa018d0a8) out of 5 stars Delicious Poison Sept. 30 2006
By David E.Baldwin - Published on
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This top-notch thriller is one where the least you say about it the better. You just have to experience first hand the ingenious story twists and complex characterizations for yourself. I would describe it as neo-Hitchcock and that's not because of the presence of Anthony Perkins in the cast. With the erosion of the Production Code this is quite daring stuff and pretty provocative for 1968. Anthony Perkins may have given the performance of his career as Dennis Pitt, recently released(unleashed?) from a mental institution for arson. The underappreciated Tuesday Weld gives an Oscar-worthy(not nominated, of course) turn as Sue Anne Stepanek, high school majorette and the object of Dennis' affections. Good supporting turns by John Randolph as Dennis' caseworker and Beverly Garland as Sue Anne's strict mom. The term indispensible is bandied about for a lot of films but not in this case. On a trivial note, in the eighties there was a band from Philly who took their name from this film's title and had a minor hit, "Nightime".
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa018d2b8) out of 5 stars "Pretty Poison" Purrs but Doesn't Growl Aug. 16 2008
By Bryan Cassiday - Published on
Format: DVD
Fete of Death
Dennis Pitt, an emotionally disturbed arsonist prone to fantasizing, is released from a mental institution and ventures out into the real world where he tries to impress Sue Ann, a high-school blonde with the face of a baby doll, by pretending to be a spy for the CIA. At the time of Pitt's release from the asylum, his doctor admonished him to stop fantasizing because there is no place for it in the real world. It turns out, though, that the real world contains even crazier and more dangerous psychopaths than do the insane asylums. "Pretty Poison" has a fascinating premise and it should have been a far better movie. The trouble is the direction is flat and uninspired. The movie is slow-paced and fails to build any significant suspense or thrills, which is out of joint with its subject matter. On the other hand, Anthony Perkins and Tuesday Weld turn in well-honed performances as psychopaths, and, oddly enough, of the two, Weld comes off as the scarier.