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Ice Cold In Alex [DVD]


Price: £7.50 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
Only 5 left in stock (more on the way).
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Ice Cold In Alex [DVD] + The Cruel Sea (Digitally Restored) [DVD] (1953) + Reach For The Sky [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: John Mills, Anthony Quayle, Sylvia Syms, Harry Andrews, Diane Clare
  • Directors: J. Lee Thompson
  • Writers: Christopher Landon, T.J. Morrison
  • Producers: W.A. Whittaker
  • Format: PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Studiocanal
  • DVD Release Date: 29 Jan. 2007
  • Run Time: 124 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000KRMZOW
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 33,733 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

John Mills stars in this war story set after the fall of Tobruk in World War II. Two English army officers (John Mills and Harry Andrews) and two young nurses (Sylvia Syms and Diane Clare) are driving an ambulance through occupied North Africa to Alexandria. Along the way they pick up a South African officer (Anthony Quayle), and more than once avoid capture and death while crossing the German lines. However, as the South African officer begins to undermine their confidence, they gradually come to suspect him of being a German spy.

From the Back Cover

Subtitles: None

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

60 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Martin Thomson on 16 Jun. 2011
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Finally, one of the greatest ever British war films comes to the format it was destined for. A tense, thrilling war picture and a superbly written and acted character study with career-best performances from some of the finest actors Britain has ever produced, `Ice Cold in Alex' is a film that demands respectful treatment in the transfer to high definition, and Optimum have more than risen to the challenge, providing a simply stunning Blu Ray that doesn't so much push the boundaries of what older films can look like on Blu Ray as it does smash clean through them.

Put simply, this is one of the very finest black and white high definition transfers I have ever seen, with a level of detail and clarity that is simply staggering. Whilst the old standard DVD was very presentable, this new restoration blows it clean out of the water. Gilbert Taylor's razor-sharp cinematography has never and will never look better than it does here. Fine object detail is beyond criticism, with the numerous desert vistas providing a visual treat, and close-ups revealing every pore of skin and bead of sweat, enhancing the gritty feel of the film. Grading is exceptional, with a deep and rich greyscale and no evidence of clipping even in the brighter scenes. Digital tampering is kept to a minimum, with a natural film-like look present throughout. The use of modern `sprocketless' telecine transfer means that there is no evidence of telecine wobble, with the image remaining rock steady from the first frame to the last.

As with Optimum's release of `The Dam Busters', the original BBFC censor card has been retained, another lovely little touch that helps to set this release apart.

Sound is also good, presented as a 2 channel mono PCM track.
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53 of 58 people found the following review helpful By C. O. DeRiemer HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on 19 May 2007
Format: DVD
Four people in an ambulance are struggling to cross the hot, blinding North African desert on their way from Tobruk to Alexandria. It's 1942 and Rommel's Africa Corps is just about to take Tobruk and continue its race to Egypt. There is Captain Anson (a blond John Mills), an ambulance officer stressed to the breaking point and just this shy of being an alcoholic; Sergeant Major Tom Pugh (Harry Andrews), a big, capable lifer who has been with Anson for several months and knows his weaknesses; Diana Murdoch (Sylvia Syms), a nurse who was stranded in Tobruk, who has a steady hand but has seen her friend, another nurse, die in an attack on the ambulance; and Captain van der Poel (Anthony Quayle), a strong, swaggering South African they meet in a deserted outpost. Captain Anson is persuaded to let van der Poel join them because van der Poel has three bottles of gin with him. He also carries something in a knapsack he refuses to let out of his sight.

Ice Cold in Alex is one of the best of the war movies Britain produced in the Fifties. It sets up a small group of people on a tense journey through a desolate landscape in a broken-down ambulance. We get to know these people...and we begin to worry whether Captain Anson is going to lose it every time he gets close to a bottle; whether van der Poel is truly a South African or a German spy; whether it will be Sergeant Pugh, or Nurse Syms, or van der Poel who'll get killed in one of the dangerous situations they encounter. And the movie has plenty of well-directed, tense situations coming one after the other. The four of them encounter mine fields that must be crossed, sand storms, Nazi ambushes and pursuits, capture by German troops they must talk their way out of (with van der Poel coming in handy), mechanical breakdowns and quicksand.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By B. Ying on 22 Dec. 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
When this film was first released in Hong Kong in the late 50's,
it received good reviews.
My father used to like this type of film and he took me to the
cinema for this film.
All I could remember was group of men in the desert and the
final scene in the bar.

I bought the dvd from Amazon.UK and viewed the film recently
after over 50 years.

This black & white WWII British film remains a taut, well-directed
and acted film that has not aged.
John Mills played a troubled officer, Harry Andrew as his reliable
fellow soldier, the lovely Sylvia Syms as a nurse who came along
for the ride and Anthony Quayle as a shady South African the group
met along the way.
The film was directed by Lee J. Thompson who went on to direct
"Guns of Navarone" and many other hits in Hollywood.

One of the great asset of the film was location filming in Lybia,
the actual background of the story.
The set piece driving the truck up a sand dune recalls Werner
Herzog's dragging a boat over a hill in "Fitcarraldo".
And of course, the finale as the group finally made it to a bar in
Alexandria after their long and arduous track for a cold glass of
Carlsberg!

It remains a flawless classic war film, unless you want to be picky-
there's no frost on the beer glasses in the seemingly hot Alexandria
bar.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By amazon customer on 26 Jan. 2015
Format: DVD
The perfect companion for all film enthusiasts is THE ROMA VICTRIX WINE BEAKERCalix Imperium, Roma Victrix Pewter wine beaker

This is a suprisingly solid little gem of a film, especially since all I'd known of it was as a highly effective beer ad campaign. That element still works, the grizzled alcoholic Captain Anson (John Mills) promises that when he gets to Alexandria he will have an ice cold beer, But the crux of the film is that journey. Anson and Sergeant Major Pugh (Harry Andrews) are escorting two nurses back to Alexandria in an ambulance from behind enemy lines. Bridges are blown up, they have to traverse a minefield, there are run-ins with Germans and daring escapses from sticky situations aplenty.

Each obstacle is thrilling and conveys something about the characters, from the grizzled John Mills, his concerned second in command to the mysterious South African Captain van der Poel (Anthony Quayle) who tags along and may or may not be all he seems.

While Sylvia Syms is lovely, the romance element felt a little tacked on, though it was done nicely as Syms explains to Anson he knows nothing about women. The conclusion is as satisfying as the ice cold beer they finally enjoy. Overall all I found this to be a great little hidden gem.
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