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Life On Mars : Complete BBC Series 1 [2006] [DVD]

John Simm , Philip Glenister    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (153 customer reviews)
Price: 12.03 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Life On Mars : Complete BBC Series 1 [2006] [DVD] + Life on Mars : Complete BBC Series 2 [2007] [DVD] + Ashes to Ashes: Complete BBC Series 1 [2008] [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: John Simm, Philip Glenister, Ashley Pharoah, Bharat Nalluri, Claire Parker (IV)
  • Format: Box set, PAL, Closed-captioned
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Contender Home Entertainment Group
  • DVD Release Date: 15 May 2006
  • Run Time: 480 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (153 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000E9X0A4
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,254 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

From Amazon.co.uk

How would the modern face of policing cope in the land of The Sweeney? That’s the question posed by Life on Mars, as DI Sam Tyler (John Simm) a modern cop transported back to 1973 after a nasty car accident. There, he finds himself dealing with the significantly rougher attitudes and behaviours of "old-school" British policing, as exemplified by his new boss, DCI Gene Hunt (Philip Glenister). It’s a fish-out-of-water story, as Tyler attempts to teach his new colleagues some very modern methods, while attempting to get used to sheepskin jackets, wide lapels and man-made fibres.

This first series of the hugely successful BBC programme sets the scene and introduces the characters that make up Tyler’s new world, but stumbles a bit by trying too hard to explain exactly how he got there (the "coma" subplot just gets in the way). Life on Mars is at its best when Glenister is on screen--he’s bigoted, chauvinistic and aggressive, and goes through each episode alternately bellowing or scowling. But he’s a product of his times, and in his heart, all he wants is to catch the bad guys. For Tyler, it’s all about the means, while for Hunt it’s all about the ends. They may not like each other much, but their on-screen chemistry is undeniable, and just one of the things that make this excellent series so watchable. --Ted Kord

Product Description

United Kingdom released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: LANGUAGES: English ( Dolby Digital 5.1 ), English ( Subtitles ), SPECIAL FEATURES: Box Set, Commentary, Deleted Scenes, Documentary, Featurette, Interactive Menu, Multi-DVD Set, Scene Access, SYNOPSIS: How would the modern face of policing cope in the land of The Sweeney? That's the question posed by Life on Mars, as DI Sam Tyler (John Simm) a modern cop transported back to 1973 after a nasty car accident. There, he finds himself dealing with the significantly rougher attitudes and behaviours of 'old-school' British policing, as exemplified by his new boss, DCI Gene Hunt (Philip Glenister). It's a fish-out-of-water story, as Tyler attempts to teach his new colleagues some very modern methods, while attempting to get used to sheepskin jackets, wide lapels and man-made fibres. This first series of the hugely successful BBC programme sets the scene and introduces the characters that make up Tyler's new world, but stumbles a bit by trying too hard to explain exactly how he got there (the 'coma' subplot just gets in the way). Life on Mars is at its best when Glenister is on screen--he's bigoted, chauvinistic and aggressive, and goes through each episode alternately bellowing or scowling. But he's a product of his times, and in his heart, all he wants is to catch the bad guys. For Tyler, it's all about the means, while for Hunt it's all about the ends. They may not like each other much, but their on-screen chemistry is undeniable, and just one of the things that make this excellent series so watchable. SCREENED/AWARDED AT: BAFTA Awards, Edgar Allan Poe Awards, Emmy Awards, ...Life on Mars (Complete Series 1) - 4-DVD Set ( Life on Mars - Complete Series One )


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
58 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sheer Brilliance... 25 Jun 2007
By G Parnell VINE VOICE
Format:DVD
I never caught this series on BBC1 when it first aired, but having read the reviews of people on here, decided I would buy the first series and take a look at it myself, and see what all the fuss was about.

Having watched almost the whole first series in its entirity, (I am six episodes in) on the sheer basis of the first six episodes alone, I give it five stars. John Simm is proving to be an excellent actor, certainly he plays DI Sam Tyler with the right mixture of confusion, vulnerability, sadness and determination that makes him instantly likeable.

The premise is quite simple. DI Tyler is involved in a horrific car crash, and wakes up in 1973 - the time when man made fibres were the order of the day, Ford Cortinas were hot, and when Mobile Phones were possibly "forgein numbers" and the world was still to be introduced to the concept of a TV in a bar. Tyler is left to unravel the mystery of what is happening to him - is this all a dream? a product of his mind, brought on by the coma from his accident? Is he going mad, or is 2006 a figment of his imagination and 1973 is reality?

It's powerful, gripping television and I watched the first six episodes back to back. Sam is an engaging character, a lost man trying to make sense of the world he is in, and get to grips with brutal methods of policing. Reading a suspect his rights "doesn't go like that" there weren't tape recorders used back then, and Sam finds himself regularly haunted by the girl off the TV test card.

Sam also clashes on a regular basis with the hardline methods of his superior "Gene" played by Phillip Glennister. Glennister ignites the screen in every scene he's in, and though the two rarely see eye to eye, together their screen presence is commanding and an absolute joy to watch.
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81 of 84 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD
With a title borrowed from David Bowie and the presence of John Simm (last seen in the absorbing 'State Of Play'), this wonderfully witty and inventive drama series had me hooked from the moment I saw the advert.

The chemistry between Simm's DI Sam Tyler and Philip Glenister's scene-stealing role as DCI Gene 'The Gene Genie' Hunt (second Bowie reference) is one of the main crux of this show. Their difficult relationship straddles resentment, absolute loathing and complete reliance, resulting in hilarity (such as Glenister's wonderful one-liners) or nail-bitting drama (like Tyler and Hunt's clashes of character).

By blending what could have been just another gritty crime drama with the element of sci-fi and fantasy, the shows creators have made, with the help of a script that's full of wit, warmth and intelligence, a fantastically engaging series. If you missed it when it first aired then I reccommend that you miss out no longer; 'Life On Mars' is proof, along with 'Dr Who', 'Hussle' and 'Cassanova', that the BBC can still make great television when it wants to.

It's also a great DVD package (spanning 4 discs) that shows the producers really care about their series; the two part Making Of documentary (on discs 1 and 2) is insightful and interesting and at about 45mins each, it's not a 15 minute collection of clips and actors telling you who their character is like you don't know. The documentaries about music (disc 3) and production (disc 4) are equally as intriging. I've not experienced the audio commentaries yet but with such a great cast I'm sure they'll be entertaining. Even the imaculately produced packaging shows the care that has gone into this boxed set. Just do yourself a favour and buy it now... my little deputy dawgs.
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51 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing Else Like It! 22 Sep 2006
Format:DVD
I live in Los Angeles, California, USA and caught this series when it aired on BBC America here over the past two months. Although it's basically a tried and true setting of a police station, the characters are deep and the acting is spectacular. John Simm is brilliant... Philip Glenister is raw and sensational. It was the one show on any channel (I have 150+) that I not only couldn't wait for the next episode, but that I watched religiously. It's the best show on television... period. It's not perfect, of course, but Sam Tyler and DCI Gene Hunt are pretty close. The writing is solid and witty, the conflicts are realistic, and the juxtaposition between the two worlds is executed more solidly than most anything I've seen. I cannot wait for Season 2.

I purchased the DVD for obvious reasons and as it's not available in the states, I didn't mind paying $50 US for it. It's worth every penny and I would have paid double that.

Writer/Producer David E. Kelley (Ally McBeal, The Practice, Boston Legal) has optioned the rights for a US version and although I believe it would be near impossible to carry over the same world and feel to the States... if anyone can do it, David E. Kelley can. He is developing it for next season (Fall 2007-2008).
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant series, very poor quality blu-ray. 3 Feb 2012
Format:Blu-ray
Allegedly shot on 16mm film stock, transferring this to blu-ray should have been a straightforward process of scanning the original negatives. Sadly, the BBC has opted to use the PAL 576i broadcast as source material, and overlay a degree of film grain effect to try and make up the difference. The result is a very mild improvement on the DVD, but too many video artefacts are all too evident. The frame rate conversion leads to some very jittery looking pan shots, there are intrusively visible scan lines whenever there is high contrast, and there is certainly no more visual detail to be gleaned from upping the resolution. The sound does benefit from the process, but this is only half of the equation when producing an HD product. A brilliant series, but a very poor blu-ray release. For those looking to upgrade from their existing DVD of the series, I'd advise to give this version a miss.
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