04/23/2014  
One Direction: Reaching for the Stars Part 2 - The Next Chapter on DVD/VOD May 13Shelter Island on DVD May 13Pennsylvania Ballet at 50 on DVD May 13Flying Tigers & Home of the Brave on Blu-ray & DVD May 13Stalingrad on Two-Disc Blu-ray with 3D, DVD & Digital May 13The Dave Clark Five And Beyond: Glad All Over on DVD & Blu-ray May 13Longmire: Season 2 on DVD May 13

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

'The Voice' Recap: Bottom Three Plead for Viewers' Save...
Stephen Colbert visits David Letterman and new 'Late Sh...
Oscar winner Lupita Nyong'o named People's most beautif...
One Direction: Reaching for the Stars Part 2 - The Next...
Shelter Island on DVD May 13...

JB Joseph Burke

The Answer to American Idol's Problems Is......
CONCRETE BLONDES...
CREAM FAREWELL CONCERT...
JACK REACHER...
MANBORG...

CA Chuck Aliaga

CORRUPTION (BLU-RAY)...
THE ATTACK (BLU-RAY)...
TANK GIRL (BLU-RAY)...
HORROR STORIES...
THE UNINVITED (BLU-RAY)...

RR Rich Rosell

THE GIRL...
THE HORDE...
LIFE IS SWEET (BLU-RAY)...
SHOUT AT THE DEVIL (BLU-RAY/DVD COMBO)...
THE BLUE ANGEL (BLU-RAY)...

MZ Mark Zimmer

BABY PEGGY: THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM...
STORAGE WARS: VOLUME THREE...
Take Part in a Film Restoration...
THE 39 STEPS (BLU-RAY)...
DARK SHADOWS: THE BEST OF BARNABAS...

JS Jesse Shanks

2 BROKE GIRLS...
DOWNTON ABBEY SEASONS ONE & TWO LIMITED EDITION...
FLORENCE AND THE SPIRIT OF THE RENAISSANCE...
NAZI COLLABORATORS...
KATT WILLIAMS: KATTPACALYPSE...

RJ Ross Johnson

THE LIFE AND DEATH OF COLONEL BLIMP (BLU-RAY)...
PURPLE NOON (BLU-RAY)...
WEEKEND (BLU-RAY)...
JUAN OF THE DEAD...
THE DEVIL'S NEEDLE AND OTHER TALES OF VICE AND REDEMPTI...

JD Jon Danziger

SUNSET BOULEVARD...
SALO, OR THE 120 DAYS OF SODOM...
TABLOID...
CUL-DE-SAC...
3 WOMEN...

JC Joel Cunningham

YOJIMBO/SANJURO...
SUMMER HOURS (L'heure d'ÈtÈ)...
WIZARD OF OZ...
WINGS OF DESIRE...
HORTON HEARS A WHO!...

DH Dan Heaton

REVANCHE...
LAST DAYS OF DISCO...
NIGHTS AND WEEKENDS...
STARGATE SG-1: CHILDREN OF THE GODS...
STARGATE ATLANTIS: THE COMPLETE FIFTH SEASON...

MS Matt Serafini

THE STEPFATHER...
THE HILLS RUN RED...
MANAGEMENT...
NIGHT OF DEATH...
GNAW...

KC Kevin Clemons

Freddy Got Fingered...

JU Jeff Ulmer

Secure The Second Season of The Border on DVD August 25...
THE WALTONS: THE COMPLETE 9TH SEASON...
Dance Me Outside kicks onto DVD May 6, 2008...

DD Dale Dobson

Film-Fest 4: Sundance 2000 & Hawaii...

RM Robert Mandel

Saving Private Ryan...

Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

Anchor Bay presents
Scandal (1989)

"There's no harm in it. We're all flesh, you know."
- Christine Keeler (Joanne Whalley-Kilmer)

Review By: Mark Zimmer   
Published: December 26, 2000

Stars: John Hurt, Joanne Whalley-Kilmer, Ian McKellen, Bridget Fonda
Other Stars: Leslie Phillips, Britt Ekland, Daniel Massey, Roland Gift, Jeroen Krabbe
Director: Michael Caton-Jones

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (nudity, sexual situations, language, drug use, racial epithets, suicide)
Run Time: 01h:54m:22s
Release Date: September 05, 2000
UPC: 013131124293
Genre: drama


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B+ BBB- D

DVD Review

In these post-Clinton-intern days, it's almost quaint to think of a time when a sex scandal could bring down a government. But thus it was in the 1960s (which were clearly not so innocent, but the façade was nonetheless there) when young tart Christine Keeler, through her relationship with British War Minister John Profumo, ended up dragging the Conservative government of Harold Macmillan through the mud and out of office.

The film begins with Dr. Stephen Ward (John Hurt), a randy, gossipy osteopath, meeting the young and attractive Christine (Joanne Whalley-Kilmer), a London showgirl. Before long, he has her move in with him and introduces her to various notables, primarily so he can hear the après-sex tales from Christine. Among other relationships, Christine is involved with John Profumo (Ian McKellen) and simultaneously with Eugene Ivanov (Jeroen Krabbe), who may or may not be a Soviet spy. When things get out of hand, the story makes its way to the London tabloids, Profumo is disgraced and Ward finds himself on trial for acting as a pimp.

The film takes the viewpoint not so much of the scandal per se, or of Christine, but is rather the story of Ward and his desire to engage in voyeuristic sex talk about the exploits of Christine and her friend, Mandy Rice-Davies (Bridget Fonda). The morals of the situation are completely irrelevant to Ward—whether Christine is bedding a War Minister or spy or West End lowlife—it makes no difference whatsoever to him. He just wants the gory details to snigger over.

Hurt is excellent in bringing Ward's character to life; his performance is restrained with a feeling of longing and emptiness that is highly evocative and makes his motives understandable. Whalley is fetching (and indeed far more attractive than the real-life Keeler) though rather mature for the part of the 18-year-old Christine. She does an impressive job of conveying her feelings for Ward even as everything crumbles around them. McKellen is outstanding as the alternately obsessed and humiliated Profumo, and Bridget Fonda nicely captures the completely cold and calculating Mandy.

While the cover of the keepcase trumpets the fact that this disc is uncut and uncensored, there is not much titillating material here; the only good look we get at Christine Keeler's body is through Whalley's body double. Most of the reinstated material appears to be in a fairly ridiculous orgy, in which aged government officials and men of wealth cavort with women one third their age. Indeed, the film takes a thoroughly unsympathetic view towards these men, most clearly exemplified in the scene where Profumo is awkwardly making love to Keeler, while she is unable to stifle a completely bored yawn. It's moments like these that make aging men such as myself quite thoroughly ashamed of our breed. Perhaps John Profumo deserved to lose his position, not for breaches of security, but for making a thorough ass of himself with a young woman.

Rating for Style: B+
Rating for Substance: B

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.85:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicyes


Image Transfer Review: The image is a little on the soft side, with marginal black levels. Colors are excellent, however, and the source print exhibits no damage whatsoever. The anamorphic picture isn't quite as clear as one would expect for such a recent film, but the picture is stable and displays little in the way of artifacts.

Image Transfer Grade: B

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishyes
Dolby Digital
5.1
Englishyes


Audio Transfer Review: Both audio tracks are quite satisfactory. The 5.1 track has a wider musical soundstage and superior ambience in the crowd and party scenes, but the film is mostly dialogue driven and thus primarily center-oriented. There is precious little directionality on either track; it is most pronounced during the briefly psychedelic marijuana-use sequence. The LFE channel hasn't much to do, making the difference between the two tracks nominal at best.

Audio Transfer Grade: B-

 

Disc Extras

Full Motion menu with music
Scene Access with 32 cues and remote access
1 Original Trailer(s)
Packaging: Alpha
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: RSDL
Layers Switch: 00h:58m:24s

Extras Review: The only extra is a nonanamorphic, full-frame trailer that consists mainly of review blurbs. Chaptering is adequate but not excessive. And that's all she wrote. The layer change is badly placed and some of the dialogue is cryptic enough to make one long for subtitles.

Extras Grade: D

 

Final Comments

An interesting historical drama with an erotic edge, Scandal is rather tame in retrospect. Very good performances make this worth consideration, despite the lack of extras.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 





Covered California

Keywords

television, the voice, vocal competition, carson daly, twitter, usher, t.j. wilkins, shakira, tess boyer, dani moz, late show, david letterman, stephen colbert, cbs, comedy central, the colbert report, celebrity, lupita nyong'o, people mangazine, academy award, 12 years a slave, steve mcqueen, biography, documentary, box office, movies, good morning america, abc, lara spencer, josh elliot, nbc sports, george stephanopolous, robin roberts, movie, heaven is for real, connor corum, greg kinnear, thomas haden, books, gabriel garcia marquez, nobel laureate, one hundred years of solitude, war, cannes film festival, grace of monaco, nicole kidman, kristen stewart, robert pattinson, maps to the stars, julianne moore, foxcatcher, the homesman, tommy lee jones, hilary swank, mrs. doubtfire, robin williams, fox 2000, chris columbus, david berenhaum, drama, brad pitt, general stanley mcchrystal, the operators, afghanistan war film, david michod, gone girl gillian flynn, ben affleck, rosamund pike, elvis costello, she, nine inch nails, trent reznor, atticus ross, gone girl's score, ultimate warrior, james hellwig, wrestler, heart disease, world wrestling entertainment hall of fame, animation, hbo, game of thrones, jack gleeson, king joffrey baratheon, the purple wedding, horror, fantasy, sci-fi, shailene wookley, veronica roth, allegiant, divergent, insurgent, the croods, nicolas cage, joe, david gordon green, tye sheridan

On Kindle!
On Facbook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too
Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact