The Case of the Bloody Iris / Celluloid Dreams (2024)

The Case of the Bloody Iris (4K Ultra HD Review)

In the scope of cinematic history, Italy has certainly left a lasting impression. Widely considered the birthplace of Arthouse styled films, some of their most well-known styles from the region include Neorealism, Spaghetti Westerns, but also Giallo. Giallo, falling under the broader umbrella of Horror cinema, emerged in the late 1960s, peaked in the 1970s, and is largely considered the inspiration for the popular American Slasher sub genre that rose to prominence in the late ’70s. 

Fascinating, Giallo in itself is certainly a highly artistic form of filmmaking that utilizes the foundation of a murder mystery unified with various other elements; which can include erotism, psychology, and sometimes the supernatural. With a wide range of titles to select from in the genre, some of the most recognized would have to include Mario Bava’s 1964 feature Blood and Black Lace, Lucio Fulci’s 1972 film Don’t Torture a Duckling, but also Dario Argento’s 1975 classic Deep Red. Just a few, some titles are less mainstream, others are lesser quality, but there is no doubt there are also many worth the time in discovering. Among this list of lesser known Giallo pictures you may have missed 1972’s The Case of the Bloody Iris.

The Case of the Bloody Iris 4K
The Case of the Bloody Iris / Celluloid Dreams (2024)

Directed by Giuliano Carnimeo (under the name Anthony Ascott), The Case of the Bloody Iris (titled Perché quelle strane gocce di sangue sul corpo di Jennifer? in Italian; which translates into Why those strange drops of blood on Jennifer’s body?) was one of his only explorations into Giallo. Originally spending many years working in Spaghetti Westerns, Carnimeo would also direct a plethora of Comedy themed flicks during the ‘80s, before returning to the Horror world one last time in ‘88 with Ratman.

Hitting all the right notes with The Case of the Bloody Iris, in short, it is a combination of Mystery, Horror, and a Thriller, all with clear erotic undertones. Something that is keen on creating a mood, with emphasis on light and colors, but also tempting you with several tension building scenes, overall, the feel/pace of The Case of the Bloody Iris make it a gem Giallo fans must not miss. Beyond these attributes, perhaps one of the biggest drawing cards is also iconic French-Italian Actress Edwige Fenech in the leading role. Fenech, known for spell-bounding eyes and overall beauty, teams up with co-star George Hilton (who appeared in over 20 Euro-Westerns as well as several other Giallo films), and the chemistry works out quiet well on-screen.

Now fifty-two years since the film’s initial release, several home media options have been made available; and domestic in the USA it first appeared on DVD in 2002 as part of an Anchor Bay’s The Giallo Collection, before a standalone DVD release in 2008 through Blue Underground. Keeping the legacy alive through the decades, now in 2024, The Case of the Bloody Iris makes it way to the 4K for the first time ever. 

Made possible through French film distribution company Celluloid Dreams, the new two-disc Blu-ray/4K Ultra HD set arrived on June 25, 2024 and offers plenty of intrigue. First and foremost, the transfer was scanned in 2023 from the film’s original 2-perf Techniscope camera negative to 4K. With this, scratches, debris, and more were removed to restore the imagery to be as pristine as possible. This is while the color is exceptionally vibrant and the Italian and English language audio tracks as clear as ever.

The Case of the Bloody Iris 4K
The Case of the Bloody Iris / Celluloid Dreams (2024)

Truly giving you an absolutely lovely viewing experience, for those who have seen The Case of the Bloody Iris… it is like you have never seen it before. Others who are new to the film, it is without hesitations to say this edition offers you a chance to see the film the way the creators initially intended. In certain cases some will rightfully argue a 4K transfer makes a feature lose some atmosphere, but this is not so with The Case of the Bloody Iris; because so much of this film relies upon the visual.

This all taken into consideration, Celluloid Dreams give you the original film on both a 4K Ultra HD, but also Blu-ray disc, reversible artwork, and a list of special features. Previously offered relatively absent of features as part of the 2008 DVD release, this new edition gives you some splendid featurettes with key cast members, plus more, such as a stimulating outtake reel. In all, if you fancy yourself a fan of Giallo, or are a novice looking to learn more, this new 4K Ultra HD edition of The Case of the Bloody Iris is a must have. That is why Cryptic Rock gives it 5 out of 5 stars.

The Case of the Bloody Iris / Celluloid Dreams (2024)
The Case of the Bloody Iris / Celluloid Dreams (2024)

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