THE HAUNTING OF JULIA – Blu-ray Unboxing & Review
Via Vision Entertainment have just released Richard Loncraine‘s 1977 supernatural chiller THE HAUNTING OF JULIA (aka FULL CIRCLE) on Blu-ray via their Imprint Collection and we managed to get our hands on one to review…
Based on Peter Straub’s 1975 novel, THE HAUNTING OF JULIA follows titular character Julia (Mia Farrow) who after tragically losing her daughter, leaves her husband and moves into a period home in Central London. Shortly after moving in, she realises she’s not living there alone, hence the title THE HAUNTING OF JULIA.
Though the title itself has the dual definition of the metaphysical haunting Julia encounters within the home and the personal haunting she endures from the loss of her daughter.
As a Canadian & United Kingdom co-production, the film was originally released in both territories under the title FULL CIRCLE. Unfortunately the film opened to mixed reviews and failed to set the box office alight.
Subsequently it went unreleased in the United States until 1981 when it finally opened in cinemas under the new title, THE HAUNTING OF JULIA.
While the film released to home video back in the day, in the ensuing years it lingered in rights limbo with no disc or digital release.
Now Imprint have just released a long overdue Blu-ray and thankfully it was well worth the wait. Complete with 3D lenticular hard-case, 44 page collector’s booklet (with an essay by critic/writer Sean Hogan) and newly remastered CD Soundtrack that not only includes the score but also includes twenty minutes of previously unheard music composed for the film.
With regards to Special Feature content, the release contains…
- Audio Commentary by director Richard Loncraine and Simon Fitzjohn
- Audio commentary with authors Jonathan Rigby and Kevin Lyons [Exclusive]
- Breaking The Circle – interview with composer Colin Towns
- Framing The Circle – interview with cinematographer Peter Hannan
- Joining The Circle – interview with associate producer Hugh Harlow
- Motherhood & Madness: Mia Farrow and the Female Gothic – video essay by film historian Kat Ellinger
The release also contains
- Reversible Sleeve Artwork with Variant Title & Artwork
- Optional English HOH subtitles
Restored from the original camera negative, the visual transfer of the film looks terrific, clarity is sharp and the colour palette while somewhat muted in style is clearly defined. Having long languished on video cassette in a pan and scanned 1.33:1 ratio, seeing the film in its original aspect ratio of 2.35:1 is a genuine revelation, both in terms of composition and framing.
Unfortunately the LPCM 2.0 Mono track is a little limp, it’s generally flat and will likely have you reaching for the remote to adjust the volume at points throughout the film. That said however this isn’t an issue strictly with Imprint’s release, it seems to be inherent with the restoration itself (and likely due to the the original source material) as both the Scream Factory and BFI releases appear to be the same in this regard.
THE HAUNTING OF JULIA is an engaging, slowburn, psychological-horror come supernatural-mystery that will no doubt please fans of films like Peter Medark’s THE CHANGELING (1980), John Hancock’s LET’S SCARE JESSICA TO DEATH (1971) and even the other Mia Farrow chiller, Roman Polanski’s ROSEMARY’S BABY (1968).
Limited to 1500 units, the Blu-ray is Available Now directly via Imprint