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UK: Optimum Releasing
Cast: Carl Boehm, Moira Shearer, Anna Massey, Maxine Audley, Brenda Bruce, Miles Malleson, Esmond Knight, Martin Miller, Bartlett Mullins, Michael Goodliffe, Nigel Davenportjack Watson, Shirley Ann Field, Michael Powell, Columba Powell
Director: Michael Powell
UK: 101 mins
UK Certificate: 15 contains moderate violence and strong psychological threat
UK Release Date: 19 November 2010 (Limited Release)
UK Blu-ray Release Date: 22 November 2010
Cult film PEEPING TOM has an exceptional history for never has a work been so misunderstood upon its original release. Critics called it : 'the sickest and filthiest film I can remember seeing' (The Spectator); 'stinks more than anything else in British films' (New Statesman); 'Frankly beastly' (Financial Times); while Tribune wanted it 'flushed swiftly down the nearest sewer'.
British director Michael Powell faced an enormous backlash on the film's original release in the UK and brought about a premature end to a fine career. Recognised as a true masterpiece years later, it seems impossible for an audience today to comprehend the fury which it provoked at the time.
By day, Mark Lewis (Karlheinz Böhm) works as a modest focus-puller in a film studio. But he also shoots glamour photographs for a seedy Soho newsagent, and by night he seeks victims for his most gruesome obsession - filming the face of mortal fear, moments before death. Written by British cryptographer and playwright Leo Marks, PEEPING TOM also stars Moira Shearer, Anna Massey, Shirley Anne Field and real-life Glamour Queen Pamela Green and was shot by celebrated Director of Photography Otto Heller (The Queen of Spades, The Ladykillers, Victim).
Powell's career never recovered from the scandal. But twenty years later, PEEPING TOM was hailed as a misunderstood masterpiece - especially by filmmakers such as Martin Scorsese, who submitted the film to the New York Film Festival in 1979 and helped finance a US re-release, allowing it to be rediscovered by a new audience. Today its wit, beauty and power see it rightly celebrated as a classic.
PEEPING TOM has been digitally restored and will be reissued in celebration of its 50th anniversary and then on blu-ray for the first-time in the UK.