Blu-Ray Review: The Dark Eyes of London

Bela Lugosi remains one of the most iconic and recognisable faces in horror cinema. Most famous for his portrayal of Dracula in the pre-code Universal Pictures version of Bram Stoker’s ‘Count’, the Hungarian actor went on to play a number of memorable roles. However, his career was stunted by his thick accent and later addiction to opiates, triggered by his military service. He also often found himself playing second-billing to Boris Karloff. Whilst most of his career was spent in Hollywood, he made a number of films in Britain. Such as The Dark Eyes of London.

A series of mysterious drownings in the Thames raise the suspicions at Scotland Yard. While they all look like suicides; Detective Inspector Larry Holt (Hugh Williams) is not so sure. Especially when the victims are all connected by a life insurance firm run by Doctor Orloff (Lugosi). Along with an American colleague (Edmon Ryan) he starts to make enquiries, leading them to the Dearborn Home for the Blind, the sole benefactor from these policies.

Adapted from a novel by Edgar Wallace, The Dark Eyes of London is an intriguing crime thriller which pits the greatest minds of Scotland Yard against an evil genius. The first British film to be receive the ‘H’ censor rating for being ‘Horrific for Public Exhibition’, it’s tame by today’s standard. However, Walter Summers’ film contains enough mystery and dark shadows to keep you guessing and a race against time to save a damsel in distress (Greta Gynt).

Special features:

  • Brand-new audio commentary with Kim Newman and Stephen Jones
  • Kim Newman and Stephen Jones discuss Lugosi’s work in the UK at the Edgar Wallace pub in London
  • US titles
  • US trailer
  • Image gallery
  • Limited edition booklet written by Adrian Smith
  • Limited edition O-card (Blu-ray exclusive)
  • Limited edition poster postcards (Blu-ray exclusive)

The Dark Eyes of London is released on Blu-ray and DVD by Network on 11 October.

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