The Cry of the Owl
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Perhaps the only major flaw is that with so many dark chords being struck one begins to become tone deaf by movies end.Read more ›
'The Cry of the Owl' is also one of the most efficient suspense movies I have seen. Perhaps because (despite what I said above) I had not read this particular novel, I found it almost unbearable to watch the events unfold. The suspense is on two levels. First, most conventionally, we care about what happens to the 'hero' and he is in quite a fix. Second, we never really know how the film is going to develop. It has a bit of the flavor of the recent 'A Simple Plan,' in which things never quite work out as expected, but I think it is considerably better. In particular, whereas 'A Simple Plan' pretty much settled down to a conventional plotline about half way through, 'The Cry of the Owl' continues to keep us off balance.
The new DVD is very nice. There is a very interesting and informative commentary, and the quality of the picture and sound is very good. I will give one piece of consumer advice: I originally (tried) to watch the film on my laptop and found the image too dark to watch in comfort. However, when I played it on a television it looked really good, and the high rating to the picture given by other reviewers was well justified. I cannot explain the discrepancy between the two media, but just in case you have a problem like mine, try using the TV.
The story of Robert Forestier, a man who initially seems to have the minor vice of peeping (minor because he does not practice this when his "victim" is nude, but clothed), it becomes darker as we find out that the object of his scrutiny, Juliette, is herself skewed, although in a dramatically different way. And that Robert's ex-wife has her own unusual predilections. As does Juliette's boyfriend Paul.
Not only that, but there is something far more disturbing about Robert than his peeping, and that should not be revealed here. Is he a murderer? No. Let's just say it does have something to do with death, however. The intricate and intelligent interplay of the four main characters give this film an unusually powerful structure and tone.
Made in 1987, it has rarely been equalled and is absolutely worth owning. Without question, it's one of Chabrol's best films, matched in recent years only by his filming of another crime novel written by a British woman (Ruth Rendell), La Ceremonie.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Top notch Chabrol--in fact, one of his best--via Patricia Highsmith (author of Strangers On A Train and the Ripley books). Read morePublished on August 8, 2012 by Harry O
I am in general a big fan of Claude Chabrol films, and I think that it is safe to say that no other director has made films of such a range of quality as Chabrol. Read morePublished on February 7, 2008 by Utah Blaine
The quality of the transfer of this movie onto DVD is passable but disappointing. There is no wide screen, it has poor contrast and looks more like a well used video. Read morePublished on February 4, 2005 by Chris