Who Killed Teddy Bear - Who Killed Teddy Bear( Blu Ray) [Network - 2018]From 1965 Who Killed Teddy Bear is a groovy-to-grim psychodrama/thriller set to the backdrop of swinging 60’s New York clubland. Here from Network is a recent region B Blu Ray of the film.
Who Killed Teddy Bear was the second feature-length film from New York Director & producer Joseph Cates- who was most known for his work in US TV. The film tells of Nightclub stewardess Norah(Juliet Prowse) who starts getting a series of unsettling phone calls from a sexual predator-into the story comes sex crime-obsessed cop Dave Madden, gravely female nightclub owner, and seemingly meek & mild bellboy Lawrence Shearman(Sal Mineo).
The film brings together a nicely tight & grimly noir-ish thriller, with dysfunction family drama elements- all with the backdrop of Time Square & 42nd street when it was still sleaze lined, lots of grooving dance footage, and the occasional creepy/ skin-crawling moment. Seeming when the film originally came it out in had censorship issues- which isn’t surprising, as while it doesn’t have any overtly bloody or brutal moments, the subject matter & way it's dealt with in gloating sleazed manner would surely have caused issues in the ’60s. The pace of the film nicely flows through-out, and you’re kept guessing who the sexual predator is until the last half or so when the tension gets nicely ramped-up. In places, the film was a little dated, with some of the grooving dance scenes getting a little overbearing in the first half- but as it moves forward there’s no doubt you get pulled in by the whole thing.
Extras wise we get a just under hour-long episode of US TV war drama Court Martial, which features Sal Mineo as a troubled soldier. An eighteen minute 1960’s Public information film about the dangers of LSD- this is a great mix of doctor banter, recreated trips, and amusing 60’s teen footage. Lastly, you get a trailer & still gallery. The transfer looks good enough on the Blu ray- with a nice crisp & line clear monochrome print.
While not as shocking or graphic as some other psychodramas/ sexual predator films, Who Killed Teddy Bear is an effective enough addition to the genre- with a nice even pace, good acting, and some generally tense-creepy moments along the way. And the shots of 42nd street are a nice extra bonus for fans of grimmer side of New York City- all making this worth picking up if you’re a fan of this genre of films.Roger Batty