DVD Title
 The Bad Sleep Well
International Title
 The Bad Sleep Well
Movie Length: 150 minutes Original Length: 150 minutes
Company: Criterion Release: 2006
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1Anamorphic: Yes
Region: 1Discs: 1
Language/Sound: Order
Japanese (1.0 Mono)
· Menus (English)
· Chapters (32)
· Trailers: The Bad Sleep Well
· Toho Masterworks: The Bad Sleep Well (33 minutes)
· 12 page booklet on the film found in the case
Anthony Romero

Criterion's first Toho disc of 2006, and one that shows immense promise of things to come in terms of the care taken in restoring the movie. In fact, I would go as far as to say that this is easily the best the movie has ever looked on home video, as it features a stunning video transfer. It's a shame that the audio doesn't stack up that well, but some worthwhile extras help to promote this disc as another good release from Criterion.


Criterion has really outdone themselves with the video presentation on this film, presenting a transfer that is simply stunning given that the movie is 46 years old today. The most noticeable aspect about this release is simply the level of detail present, as the movie looks incredibly sharp and lush with detail in just about every frame. As for noise, there is a very low level of grain present. The print used for the transfer also looks splendid, sporting hardly any damage as Criterion's efforts to restore the movie have paid off wonderfully.

The Bad Sleep Well is presented in its original aspect ratio of 2.35:1, and is Anamorphic for widescreen TVs.


The Bad Sleep Well contains one audio track, which is a 1.0 mono presentation. The overall quality is good, with the dialogue all being crystal clear and there being no noticeable distortions. However, it's unfortunate that the movie's original stereo presentation, created using Perspecta Stereophonic Sound, was not included with this release.

The audio can be accompanied with, removable, English subtitles.


This disc doesn't contain a huge amount of added content, but it's not a bad mix of supplemental material either. Like with other discs from the company, the star attraction is easily the documentary behind the movie, another in Toho's Masterworks line. This particular one is 33 minutes long and features numerous interviews with the surviving cast and crew as they relate stories and endeavors related to the production. Next up on the disc is a trailer for the movie that, sadly, is in very poor condition, looking faded and poorly compressed like something one would expect to find on a bootleg release almost. Finally, the last extra is contained in the booklet, which is 12 pages long and contains essays by Michael Almereyda and Chuck Stephens while also featuring several nice production stills throughout.


Bottom line, it's not the best of Criterion's efforts, but the amazing video transfer and the worthwhile Toho Masterworks documentary make this a worthwhile purchase for Akira Kurosawa enthusiasts.