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FOUR SIDED TRIANGLE ($30) is another of the more obscure Hammer offerings to make its way to DVD thanks to Anchor Bay Entertainment. Directed by the legendary Terence Fisher, FOUR SIDED TRIANGLE debuted in 1952 just slightly before Fisher's HORROR OF DRACULA and CURSE OF FRANKENSTEIN turned the independent production company into the greatest horror studio the world has ever known. Like the later Hammer classics that I mentioned, FOUR SIDED TRIANGLE is an intelligent offering that takes its subject matter seriously and offers very strong characterization.

Even though FOUR SIDED TRIANGLE is nearly fifty years old, the story line proves to be more timely today because elements of the plot that were total science fiction, now seem a bit closer to being science fact. The plot of FOUR SIDED TRIANGLE concerns three childhood friends, two boys and a girl who grow up with their relationships becoming ever more complex. The adult Bill Leggatt (Stephen Murray) and Robin Grant (John Van Eyssen) enter the field of scientific research, where they perfect an apparatus capable of perfectly duplicating inanimate matter. With the endeavor a success, Bill is ready to profess his feelings for Lena Maitland (Barbara Payton), whom he has loved since childhood.

Unfortunately, Lena has already accepted a marriage proposal from his partner and best friend Robin. Unwilling to let the woman he loves get away, Bill decides to further develop capabilities of the duplicating machine to include living things. With his equipment finally up to the task, Bill creates a duplicate of Lena, whom he dubs Helen. Bill's dreams for happiness seem to be coming true until he discovers that his clone is a far too perfect duplicate of Lena, since Helen also loves Robin. Desperate to hold onto the woman he loves, Bill decides to take drastic action to make Helen his own. The cast of FOUR SIDED TRIANGLE also includes James Hayter, Percy Marmont, Jennifer Dearman, Glyn Dearman, Sean Barrett and Kynaston Reeves.

Anchor Bay Entertainment has done an absolutely first rate job with their DVD edition of FOUR SIDED TRIANGLE. FOUR SIDED TRIANGLE is presented in its proper 1.37:1 theatrical aspect ratio and the black and white film element utilized for the transfer is in superb condition for its age. Blemishes and other age related anomalies on the source element are minimal, so there are no real distractions during the presentation. The image is quite sharp and displays an impressive amount of detail. Blacks are a perfect pitch black and the picture displays excellent contrast through all the shades of gray into bright white. Digital compression artifacts do not make their presence known on this smartly authored DVD.

The Dolby Digital monaural soundtrack is free from major distortions, however there is a small amount of hiss on the track, which becomes noticeable at higher volume levels. Frequency response is limited to the recording and playback technologies of the early 1950s. Still, dialogue is crisply reproduced and always remains intelligible. The interactive menus include a bit of animation and sound. Through the menus, one has access to the standard scene selection feature, as well as a World Of Hammer episode entitled THE CURSE OF FRANKENSTEIN.

FOUR SIDED TRIANGLE is another treat for Hammer fans courtesy of the fine folks at Anchor Bay Entertainment. The movie is highly entertaining and the DVD presentation excellent. Recommended to all Hammer fans.




DVD reviews are Copyright 2000 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.



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