I’m presuming that some may not be aware of the history behind Arrow’s new Blu-ray release of Phantom Lady, courtesy of Universal.
For those who will be picking up a copy, many will take note of certain characteristics in story, cutting, etc., which happen to take on a quite Hitchcockian aura.
This is hot merely by happenstance.
Joan Harrison is a name you’ll find on the Hitchcock TV series. But she started as AH’s secretary in 1933, working her way up to a reader, and working with screenplays.
This information is off the too of my head, and I’ve not rechecked it, but I recall that Phantom Lady was a project that came out of Hitchcock’s Universal work in the mid-1940s. For whatever reason, it did not end up being a Hitchcock project. But apparently Harrison was involved early on in such a way, that when she was given her producer stripes at Universal, she was able to take Phantom Lady with her, and became its associate producer.
The project was eventually made under the hand of Robert Siodmak, (The Spiral Staircase, Criss Cross, The Strange Affair of Uncle Harry – also a Harrison project.)
Phantom Lady is a film that is much more than the sum of its parts.
The scan is from a lovely film element, presumably a fine grain, with a bit of wear, a sequence with some built-in light scratches, but never anything untoward.
I’ve always considered it a dangling participle to the Hitchcock catalog. In a way a Hitchcock film, that wasn’t.
And again, I’m relating this information not as facts, but from my memory.
Worth an examination.
Image – 4
Audio – 5
Pass / Fail – Pass
Upgrade from DVD – yes
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