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Peeping Tom (1960)

Not Rated  |   |  Drama, Horror, Thriller  |  15 May 1962 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 19,167 users  
Reviews: 131 user | 123 critic

A young man murders women, using a movie camera to film their dying expressions of terror.

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Writers:

(original story), (screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Karlheinz Böhm ...
Mark Lewis (as Carl Boehm)
...
Vivian
...
Maxine Audley ...
Brenda Bruce ...
Dora
Miles Malleson ...
Elderly Gentleman Customer
...
Arthur Baden
Martin Miller ...
Dr. Rosen
...
Don Jarvis
Jack Watson ...
Chief Insp. Gregg
Shirley Anne Field ...
Pauline Shields (as Shirley Ann Field)
Pamela Green ...
Edit

Storyline

Mark Lewis, works as a focus puller in a British film studio. On his off hours, he supplies a local porno shop with cheesecake photos and also dabbles in filmmaking. A lonely, unfriendly, sexually repressed fellow, Mark is obsessed with the effects of fear and how they are registered on the face and behavior of the frightened. This obsession dates from the time when, as a child, he served as the subject of some cold-blooded experiments in the psychology of terror conducted by his own scientist father. As a grown man, Mark becomes a compulsive murderer who kills women and records their contorted features and dying gasps on film. His ongoing project is a documentary on fear. With 16mm camera in hand, he accompanies a prostitute to her room and stabs her with a blade concealed in his tripod, all the while photographing her contorted face in the throes of terror and death. Alone in his room, he surrounds himself with the sights and sounds of terror: taped screams, black-and-white "home ... Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Don't dare tell the ending to anyone - you'll be blamed for nightmares! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 May 1962 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Face of Fear  »

Box Office

Budget:

£135,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$77,752 (USA) (7 May 1999)

Gross:

$83,957 (USA) (20 August 1999)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In his memoirs Michael Powell revealed his other candidates for the role of Vivian as being Joan Plowright (rejected as 'too sympathetic') and a young Julie Andrews (rejected as 'too famous'). He eventually chose Moira Shearer despite initially describing her as 'too glamorous'. See more »

Goofs

Mark plays a tape recording of himself aged 5, made by his father who had every room in the house wired. Domestic tape recorders were not available until the late 1940s, when Mark would would have been at least 10. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[Mark approaches the prostitute, covertly filming her]
Dora: It'll be two quid
See more »

Connections

Featured in Movie Macabre: Peeping Tom (1982) See more »

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User Reviews

The British 'Psycho'
10 February 1999 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

It's difficult to imagine the effect that this film had on critics and audiences when first shown as in the 90's we have become desensitized by the violence and cruelty of slasher movies.

Yet even today this film is deeply disturbing. The lead character is portrayed in a sympathetic light, thanks to a stunning performance from Carl Boem. He is a victim of a cruel and abusive father, desperate to escape the curse that has been handed down to him. There are some memorable scenes: the home movie showing him and his father (played by Michael Powell and his own son), the shot of the beautiful model turning round and showing her hare lip and the projection of one of the murders to the blind mother, with part of the frame projecting onto the murderer.

This is a deeply unnerving film but brilliantly made. Go see.


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