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  Directed by
    None Listed
  Starring
  Specs
  • Widescreen 1.85:1
  • 16:9 Enhanced
  • Dual Layer ( )
  Languages
  • English: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
  • French: Dolby Digital Stereo
  • Spanish: Dolby Digital Stereo
  • German: Dolby Digital Stereo
  • Italian: Dolby Digital Stereo
  Subtitles
    English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Hebrew, Czech, Greek, Polish, Hungarian, Dutch, Arabic, Portuguese, Turkish, Icelandic, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Hindi, Bulgarian
  Extras
  • Theatrical trailer - 4:3
  • 5 Cast/crew biographies
  • Featurette - Behind the Scenes

See No Evil, Hear No Evil

Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Home Entertainment . R4 . COLOR . 98 mins . M15+ . PAL

  Feature
Contract

Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor together are always great, but in See No Evil they’ve appeared in one of their best joint films. While not being Oscar winning material by a long shot, it is still a remarkable achievement for both of these comedic greats to play their parts either deaf or blind.

Our story starts with Wally (Pryor), a blind man struggling with his bitterness in a sighted world. He applies for a job with Dave (Wilder), a deaf newspaper stand owner and quite quickly the two are firm friends. However, Wally has lost a little too much money at the track recently and his bookie swings by to extract payment. Unfortunately, while there, the bookie is murdered by a calculating and beautiful woman (Joan Severance) just after he hides a rare coin among Dave’s newspaper change. This all happened while Dave’s back was turned, so he only saw the departing assailant’s remarkable legs while Wally only heard the gunshot, but neither of them can pinpoint the killer.

"I learned this at the Braille Institute. They told us to feel around and see what’s happenin’!"

Naturally, this means they are both suspects and it isn’t long until they’re behind bars. Knowing they’ll stay in jail if they don’t find the killer, they escape and begin a trip to catch the baddies at their own game. What follows is a classic series of comedic events, triggered by having both the police and the bad guys after them. These many smaller bits help build the story into a very funny film that still manages to deliver a poignant message to the normally-abled community.

Wilder and Pryor are sensational as a double-team and obviously have a great deal of affection for working with one another. This is a fun movie with some hilarious moments, with a surprising early performance by Kevin Spacey playing an English baddie with an impeccable accent. Former Playboy model Joan Severance plays the beautiful killer well, and although not the strongest performer in the piece, she still plays it convincingly.

  Video
Contract

1989 saw this film land in cinemas and it was well received at that. Delivered here in the original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.85:1 and 16:9 enhanced, the picture is surprisingly clean for this nearly 15-year old film. Everything looks nice and sharp and well defined, while colours are all pretty well saturated. There aren’t a great deal of shadows, but those that are present are clearly detailed.

The picture is surprisingly clear of film artefacts and while there are some, of course, there isn’t anything too obvious or distracting. I couldn’t detect any aliasing, and that includes some prime spots of diagonal wires and such where crafty aliasing hides. It’s generally a great looking picture all up.

  Audio
Contract

Again, everything is just a step short of perfect. Dialogue is all very clear and easily understood with Spacey’s English toff accent coming through crisply. Sound effects, too, are all fine which is very important here. Early in the film we are introduced to the various sounds of a busy city that most of us take for granted in everyday life and they are delivered sharply.

The music is well suited to the piece, utilising a more comedic feel to amplify the film’s intentions. It all sounds resonant and clean and works away tirelessly in the background supporting the film without dominating.

  Extras
Contract

Sadly, there’s not a lot here. There are but three extras included and the first of these is the trailer, which runs for 1:19 in the old school television format of 4:3. So not a great start.

Next is a behind the scenes featurette which is the highlight here. Naturally made for TV, it is delivered in 4:3 and runs for just 8:02. Whilst most of it is serviceable for the purpose and is in good condition, the colours are all washed out, giving a hazy feel to it. It has one of those dodgy gravel voiced stage whisper voiceovers that I really dislike, but does contain a brief second or two of film footage not in the final cut.

And, last cabs off the rank are five talent profiles for our four main stars and the director, Arthur Hiller. All are current up to the present.

Not a huge batch, but one with an occasional insight at least. Unfortunately, there are no captions for the blind or deaf though. I thought this was a sad exclusion and one that would have been so simple to add in. Even Daredevil had captions for the visually impaired.

Oh well.

  Overall  
Contract

Richard Pryor and Gene Wilder together are always a hoot, but in See No Evil they have delivered some of their finest comedic moments. A bit of silliness that does have an underlying message, it all makes for a fun film that is rewatchable even after all these years. I imagine it will maintain that rewatchability factor for many years to come yet and as part of a three film box set it’s but one prize among three greats.


  • LINK: http://www.dvd.net.au/review.cgi?review_id=3193
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      And I quote...
    "Richard Pryor and Gene Wilder in one of their best joint efforts. Need I say more?"
    - Jules Faber
      Review Equipment
    • DVD Player:
          Nintaus DVD-N9901
    • TV:
          Sony 51cm
    • Receiver:
          Diamond
    • Speakers:
          Diamond
    • Surrounds:
          No Name
    • Audio Cables:
          Standard Optical
    • Video Cables:
          Standard Component RCA
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