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Label:
Name: TWILIGHT TIME
Number: TWILIGHT312-BR

WUTHERING HEIGHTS (1970) (BLU-RAY)
Starring:  Harry Andrews, Hugh Griffith, Anna Calder-Marshall, Timothy Dalton, Pamela Browne, Ian Ogilvy
Directed By:  Robert Fuest
Composed By:  Michel Legrand

“Recurring moments…when it’s possible to comprehend something of the wild and beautiful physical environment out of which Emily Brontë created her unique novel of transcendental love and hate.”
– Vincent Canby, The New York Times

“The intensity of the relationships is well-portrayed…The film looks very good…It also sounds very good, with an excellent score by Michel Legrand that can stand as a work of art in its own right.”
– Enoch Sneed, The Spinning Image

Another passionate adaptation of Emily Brontë’s superbly strange, enduringly classic novel, this Wuthering Heights (1970) stars Timothy Dalton and Anna Calder-Marshall as the doomed and deathless lovers, Heathcliff and Cathy. Directed by Robert Fuest (The Abominable Dr. Phibes); shot at wildly beautiful Yorkshire locations by John Coquillon (Straw Dogs); co-starring the stalwart likes of Harry Andrews, Pamela Brown, Julian Glover, Hugh Griffith, and Ian Ogilvy; and featuring a stunning score by the incomparable Michel Legrand.

LANGUAGE: English
VIDEO: 1080p High Definition / 1.85:1
AUDIO: English 1.0 DTS-HD MA
SUBTITLES: English SDH 1970 / Color
104 MINUTES
RATED G

Special Features: Isolated Music Track / Audio Commentary with Film Historian Justin Humphreys / Original Theatrical Trailer

Limited Edition of 3,000 Units

  
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Reviews and Comments: (2)
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Posted by James Shertzer on November 30, 2017 3:29 PM
The Michel Legrand score (featuring the haunting song, "I Was Born in Love With You") is perhaps the best thing about this film, but overall, it's not a bad picture. It can't hold a candle to Wyler's classic 1939 version with Olivier and Oberon, but in a way, it doesn't try to. I think of this is an adaptation for the hippie generation. Dalton is his own Heathcliff. There's good supporting work from some of England's finest character actors of the period, too. American-International production values tend to be on the skimpy side.

Posted by Mark Turner on January 30, 2018 6:42 PM
Let me say up front that my wife is a big fan of the original movie version of WUTHERING HEIGHTS that starred Merle Oberon and Laurence Olivier. I know she's watched it more than once and enjoyed it each time she has. Apparently all of those times were when I wasn't home because I've yet to see that version. So this one, shot in 1970, is my first exposure to the story of Cathy and Heathcliff.

The Earnshaw family in England isn't the most posh of the lot but they are well off. One night the master of the house (Harry Andrews) returns home to Wuthering Heights with a young boy in tow. His wife eludes that this is an illegitimate son but he insists that the boy is merely an orphan he saved from the streets. The young boy, Heathcliff, grows up among the Earnshaw children, favored by young Cathy and with contempt by her brother Hindley.

The children grow up, Hindley (Julian Glover) goes off to school and Cathy and Heathcliff fall madly in love with one another. All of this is under the watchful eye of servant Nellie (Judy Cornwell). Things change when Mr. Earnshaw passes away. Hindley returns to take over things with a new wife in tow. Immediately he has Nellie and Heathcliff move out of the house to more suitable accommodations for their stature in life.

The bitterness between Heathcliff and Hindley continues. Cathy and Heathcliff prank the nearby Linton house, the end result being Cathy falling and injuring herself. The Linton's take her in and son Edgar immediately falls in love with her. Enjoying the attention Cathy gives back what she receives and provokes Heathcliff when she sees him next. In a rage he leaves all behind at sets out on his own.

Three years pass and Cathy has forgotten Heathcliff. She's now married to Edgar. Hindley has lost his wife when she was giving birth and has fallen into being an alcoholic who is in the midst of gambling away Wuthering Heights. At this time Heathcliff chooses to return, polished and refined and no longer the dirty farm hand he appeared to be when he left.

Cathy and Heathcliff once again fall hopelessly in love and meet behind the scenes. She doesn't intend to leave Edgar though and Heathcliff, now more vengeful than romantic, begins to seduce Edgar's sister Isabella. A pregnant Cathy seems to want her cake and eat it too remaining married and longing for her ex-love while he sets out to destroy those who thought themselves better than him.

I won't go on so as to not spoil the ending for those who've never seen it. Suffice to say that I wasn't thrilled with much of this movie. I found few characters to sympathize with, especially the two star crossed lovers at the center of it all. Both seem narcissistic as if all others should cater to them only. Their romance revolves around cheating on their respective spouses, of talking adoration for one another while doing as much mental harm to one another at the same time. Talk about confused.

The movie was made by AIP, American International Pictures, which was synonymous with drive in fare at the time. This was an attempt to make a more artistic costume drama on their part and it does look great. But the plotting is slow, the jumps in time unexplained and the overwrought emotions of characters off-putting. Fans of the story may enjoy it but my guess is most won't.

And yet Twilight Time has once more offered the film in pristine condition. Their presentation here in blu-ray format looks great. Would that the movie itself were as good as the efforts Twilight Time put into it. Extras include an isolated music track, an audio commentary track with film historian Justin Humphreys, the original theatrical trailer and writings by film historian Julie Kirgo. As with all Twilight Time releases this is limited to just 3,000 copies so if you're a fan then make sure you buy your copy as soon as possible.

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