Black Narcissus – Criterion [Blu-ray] (1947) *NEW*

Black Narcissus – Criterion [Blu-ray] (1947) *NEW*

$25.95

This explosive work about the conflict between the spirit and the flesh is the epitome of the sensuous style of filmmakers Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger (I Know Where I’m Going!, The Red Shoes). A group of nuns—played by some of Britain’s best actresses, including Deborah Kerr (From Here to Eternity, An Affair to Remember), Flora Robson (The Rise of Catherine the Great, Wuthering Heights), and Jean Simmons (Great Expectations, Hamlet)—struggles to establish a convent in the snowcapped Himalayas; isolation, extreme weather, altitude, and culture clashes all conspire to drive the well-intentioned missionaries mad. A darkly grand film that won Oscars for its set design and for its cinematography by Jack Cardiff (The Red Shoes, The African Queen), Black Narcissus is one of the greatest achievements by two of cinema’s true visionaries.

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A group of Anglican nuns, led by Sister Clodagh (Deborah Kerr), are sent to a mountain in the Himalayas. The climate in the region is hostile and the nuns are housed in an odd old palace. They work to establish a school and a hospital, but slowly their focus shifts. Sister Ruth (Kathleen Byron) falls for a government worker, Mr. Dean (David Farrar), and begins to question her vow of celibacy. As Sister Ruth obsesses over Mr. Dean, Sister Clodagh becomes immersed in her own memories of love.
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Black Narcissus
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Directed by Michael Powell
Emeric Pressburger
Produced by Michael Powell
Emeric Pressburger
Screenplay by Michael Powell
Emeric Pressburger
Based on Black Narcissus
by Rumer Godden
Starring Deborah Kerr
Kathleen Byron
David Farrar
Flora Robson
Sabu
Jean Simmons
Music by Brian Easdale
Cinematography Jack Cardiff
Edited by Reginald Mills
Distributed by General Film Distributors(UK), Universal-International (USA)
Release date
  • 26 May 1947
Running time
100 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Budget £280,000 (or $1.2 million)

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Weight 0.3 lbs
Dimensions 5.3 × 0.5 × 6.75 in

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  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer
  • Uncompressed monaural soundtrack
  • Video introduction by French filmmaker Bertrand Tavernier
  • Audio commentary featuring Michael Powell and filmmaker Martin Scorsese
  • The Audacious Adventurer, a 2006 video piece
  • Profile of Black Narcissus (2000), a twenty-five-minute documentary
  • Painting with Light, a twenty-seven-minute documentary
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by film critic Kent Jones