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4.6 out of 5 stars345
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 12 June 2014
When I saw that they were releasing this again on blu ray I thought I must get it after unfavourable reviews of the 2009 release on blu ray , ie no extras no interactive menus unlike the dvd two disc 2004 release which I have ! Well unfortunately I have to say that this is the 2009 blu ray disc ( it has the date on the disc ) repackaged in the steelbook case with 2014 on !!! If you're going to buy it I recommend you buy the 2 disc 2004 dvd version yes the blu ray is alot better picture quality but lack of extras is a crime as is the repackaging Fox should be ashamed of deceiving people !!!
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on 20 December 2010
I have to admit to being terribly disappointed with this version. I already own an old VHS copy and the excellent DVD Special Edition and I had high hopes of this Blu-ray version being a significant improvement. How wrong I was, this version is grainy, slightly cropped with poor colour registration and with little more detial that on the DVD. It has none of the special features from the DVD release and no alternate soundtrack with the William Walton score. In fact, it has NO special features of any kind. There is also a very annoyong subtitle that appears at odd times that cannot be removed.

This film is badly in need of a full restoration to show up the details of the original release, instead we have a badly presented, poor quality version that is best avoided. If you want a good copy of this film, stick to the DVD.
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on 27 May 2004
To say that the release of this film on DVD is long overdue, in my opinion, would be a gross understatement!

This is truly the definitive movie about the Battle of Britain. Ok, CGI technology can make a film look good, but after all said and done, it still isn't real is it? The aircraft in this film are, and again in my opinion, the real stars of this classic film. Once assembled for filming, the aircraft were the 35th largest air force in the world!

This truly is a masterpiece, the list of stars in this film is almost endless, Sir Laurence Olivier, Sir Ralph Richardson, Sir Michael Caine, Trevor Howard, Christopher Plummer, Curt Jurgens, Susannah York (what a babe!) Edward Fox and the always-excellent Robert Shaw, to name but a few. A very young Ian McShane (of Lovejoy fame) also stars as a young Flight Sergeant, who loses his family in horrific circumstances.

Added to that, the movie has been digitally re-mastered, so the picture quality and sound quality is as clear as it was when it was originally released back in 1969 (I was a wee 4yr old!)
There is also the added bonus that the original sound score, by the great Sir William Walton has been added back into the film, making it all the more gripping, and incredibly moving.

Being an ex-soldier, and having seen action, I have a rough idea what war can be like. Coupled to that is the fact that my late Grandfather who was a Canadian, flew and fought in the Battle of Britain, sadly he lost his life in 1944. I never got to know him, but the sense of pride that I have in him, and for all RAF pilots for what they achieved in those 19 hard weeks, in the summer of 1940, will stay with me, until my dying day.

The second disc is the one with all the amazing extras. There is an absolutely brilliant documentary about the Battle of Britain, and the making of the movie, narrated by Sir Michael Caine. This is the original documentary, which was shown on television in 1969 to coincide with the release of the film.
There are also some other extras on the second disc too, but if you want to know what they are... GO AND BUY IT! Why are you still sitting there eh?
What this all boils down to, is an excellent two disc DVD. The fact that it cost £16.99 in my opinion is well worth the money. If you are a WWII movie buff like myself, you will be falling over yourself to get this and add it to your collection.

GET IT!! I promise you will not regret it!
11 comment|156 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
I have to agree with reviews of the "Battle Of Britain" BLU RAY reissue as being unimpressive and massively disappointing. The DVD version that came out a few years prior has a 'restored' print (and it looks the part too) - I'm not sure that this BLU RAY uses that.

Even if it does - this offering shows that Guy Hamilton's beloved movie badly needs a clean up by someone say like Lowry Digital (they did Bond, Star Wars and Indiana Jones) or even the BFI. His crew were James Bond people anyway and it was beautifully filmed.

I've reviewed "The Italian Job" and "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" which have exceptional transfers to the new format - gobsmacking almost all of the time. In fact the same lacklustre transfer seems to apply to that other great World War II favourite - "The Great Escape" - workmanlike rather than illuminating.

I should also like to point out that the 'US' BLU RAY is no better - and is REGION A LOCKED into the bargain - so even if you wanted to play it on our machines - you can't.

This is one of those rare occasions where I'd say avoid both BLU RAYS on both sides of the pond - and lets hope that in 2014 someone on the inside decides to give this Bond Team classic a proper 007 working over.
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on 2 July 2008
This film is a winner on three counts. It brings together most of the best actors of a generation, it uses the real aircraft which took part and it was overseen from a historical perspective by pilots who flew in the battle, (Stanford Tuck, Douglas Bader and Adolph Galland amongst them).
It tells the story of the summer of 1940 with peerless aerial photography (no naff pearl habor CGI) and superbly well staged ground action such as the London Blitz and the airfield attack. I found all of the central characters thoroughly believable with the performances of Sir Larry as 'Stuffy' Dowding and Robert Shaw's Squadron leader being outstanding. This is a film I can drag out and watch every 18 months or so and it never fails to enthrall and move me. There should have been more Hurricanes than Spits and the Me 109's shouldn't have had Merlin engines, but what the hell. It's well directed, beautifully shot and above all it's FACTUAL!
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on 7 June 2011
If you have any love for this film then AVOID the Blu Ray version like the plague. As others have said the picture quality is not an improvement on the excellent 2 disk DVD version, some completely unnecessary additional subtitles have been added to the film - for instance the on screen tally of men involved in the real battle that appears at the end of the film now contains a superimposed subtitle containing the exact same text in a slightly large font. All of the extra's and the animated CGI menues from the DVD version are also missing. Without a doubt THE worst Blu Ray I own and the first instance where I have decided not to replace the DVD in my collection with it's Blu Ray counterpart.
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on 5 August 2012
The film itself is excellent. Highly realistic, perhaps because so many things were filmed for real in an age when computer generated special effects were simply not available. And with actors of the calibre of Michael Caine, Trevor Howard, Ralph Richardson, Christopher Plummer and Laurence Olivier on top form there are no complaints about the acting.

What is deeply irritating is that as so often the format of Blu Ray has not been exploited to its potential. Indeed, there is little more detail than an upscaled DVD. Further, where are the special features that a Blu Ray disc has ample room for? They're available on the DVD, so why not on the Blu Ray? It is this kind of, "oh, as long as we make it available on Bluray, they'll buy it" arrogance on the part of the film companies that threatens to marginalise this great format. Very disappointing.
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on 7 July 2014
This is just the 2009 Blu-Ray, issued again in a tin yes I have purchased it but feel very cheated.
The film it's self is very good and as I remember it going the cinema back in 1969'to see it and collecting the post cards which I still have, the one star is for ripping off the public 20th Century Fox.
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on 22 October 2007
Sir William Walton wrote the original score for this film, but it was cut apart from a short sequence at the climax of the film. Ron Goodwin wrote a glitzy 1960's score with the famous 'Aces High' Luftwaffe March, but Olivier insisted his friend Walton's score should be retained in part.
Now you can get both scores - one moody and 1940s, the other upbeat and 1960s. Both go to show how much a score can set the mood for a film, watch both - neither is better -they are just great but different.
Flying sequences are superb, although some of the bombing effects look weak. Despite its faults, this is the definitive Battle of Britain film, and Olivier's impression of Dowding spot-on.
How could the film makers claim the RAF had an Israeli pilot? This was 7 years too early...
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on 24 May 2004
I have always been a fan of this film and have been impatiently waiting for a DVD release for some time. When I found out that MGM were releasing this film on DVD, I was delighted followed by some irritation when I found out the RRP (£19.99), as the film was out in the US for $8. Yet another special edition second disc of bits and pieces with a hiked up price tag.
I hereby apologise to MGM for such unkind thoughts, because this edition is superb. The US version is in mono, where this release has 5.1 & DTS (it is excellent) and for fans of William Walton (they only used about 5 minutes of his score in the original film, Ron Goodwin supplying the rest), the soundtrack with the full Walton score as an alternative. The picture has also been restored and has a full anamorphic 2.35:1 picture.
It is a well worn cliché, but in summer 1940, Britain stood alone, facing the might of the Luftwaffe and the German army which had swept all aside. The Battle of Britain is one of the pivotal moments in the history of this country, and I believe that this film does it justice. The cast are excellent but particularly Laurence Olivier as Hugh Dowding and Robert Shaw as Squadron Leader Skipper. The film has been well researched and manages to weave all aspects of the battle into the film.
Some of the special effects are a little bit dated, but this was made 35 years ago, and they do not detract from the story. But what makes this film convincing are the real aircraft used to make it. Various reports suggest that when assembled, the aircraft were anywhere between the 11th and 35th biggest air force in the world. The aerial battles are just excellent, and the shots of bombers and fighters in formation over the real life locations in 1940, give a powerful sense of authenticity. When I think about scenes like the flight of Me109’s breaking to attack a flight of Spitfires, and compare it to the awful unrealistic Battle of Britain CGI scenes used in Pearl Harbour (which was an awful film in itself), I cannot help but think that this film is something special. I have read reviews from some “rivet counters” who state that the German Bombers are not authentic. This is true as the aircraft were built by CASA in Spain for the Spanish Air Force after the war, but you do not notice.
I cannot recommend this film enough and at last the DVD version lets us see it in all its glory.
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