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Dr. Strangelove or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb [DVD] [1964] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]


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Product details

  • Actors: Peter Sellers, George C. Scott, Sterling Hayden, Keenan Wynn, Slim Pickens
  • Directors: Stanley Kubrick
  • Writers: Stanley Kubrick, Peter George, Terry Southern
  • Producers: Stanley Kubrick, Leon Minoff, Victor Lyndon
  • Format: Black & White, Closed-captioned, DVD-Video, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English, French
  • Subtitles: Spanish
  • Dubbed: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested) (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: Warner Brothers
  • DVD Release Date: 29 Jun 1999
  • Run Time: 95 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (112 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00000J2L8
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 285,445 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

From Amazon.co.uk

Arguably the greatest black comedy ever made, Stanley Kubrick's cold war classic is the ultimate satire of the nuclear age. Dr Strangelove or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, to give it its full title, is a perfect spoof of political and military insanity, beginning when General Jack D Ripper (Sterling Hayden), a maniacal warrior obsessed with "the purity of precious bodily fluids", mounts his singular campaign against Communism by ordering a squadron of B-52 bombers to attack the Soviet Union. The Soviets counter the threat with a so-called "Doomsday Device," and the world hangs in the balance while the US president (Peter Sellers) engages in hilarious hot-line negotiations with his Soviet counterpart. Sellers also plays a British military attaché and the mad scientist Dr Strangelove; George C Scott is outrageously frantic as General Buck Turgidson, whose presidential advice consists mainly of panic and statistics about "acceptable losses". With dialogue ("You can't fight here! This is the war room!") and images (Slim Pickens's character riding the bomb to oblivion) that have become a part of our cultural vocabulary, Kubrick's film regularly appears on critics' lists of the all-time best. --Jeff Shannon, Amazon.com

Synopsis

Dr. Strangelove is Stanley Kubrick's Cold War masterpiece. Based on the novel Red Alert by Peter George, the film is set at the height of the tensions between Russia and the United States, when all it would take to destroy the world was one push of a button. And General Jack D. Ripper (Sterling Hayden) is just the man to do it. Convinced that the Russians have infiltrated America's 'vital essence', the crazed Ripper gives the go code to the 843rd bomb wing to attack Russia, setting in motion a series of darkly hilarious vignettes involving gung-ho soldiers, wacky generals, spying Russians, drunken premiers, battles with soda machines, fights in the War Room, and the Russians' top-secret Doomsday Machine. Shot in black and white, the film has three main centers of action: one of the B-52 bombers, on which a group of loyal men know they are about to start World War III; Burpelson Air Force Base, where Group Captain Lionel Mandrake (Peter Sellers) is trying to convince everyone that Ripper has gone mad and the bombing must be stopped; and the War Room, where President Merkin Muffley (Sellers again) is trying to make peace with the Russians. The finale featuring Sellers as Dr. Strangelove is a comic gem. Hayden, George C. Scott, Slim Pickens, Keenan Wynn, and Sellers (in three roles) are especially terrific in what may be the funniest, most poignant black comedy ever made, a vicious satire on the farcical aspects of the military and the cold war.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

47 of 51 people found the following review helpful By Alex Diaz-Granados on 4 May 2004
Format: VHS Tape
Dr. Strangelove, Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb is one of the most biting and hard-hitting commentaries about the U.S.-Soviet arms race, overdependence on technology, the can-do philosophy of the Air Force, and the sheer lunacy of MAD, the apt acronym for the term Mutual Assured Destruction -- which was the Cold War diplo-speak that meant "you nuke our country, we'll nuke yours."
Normally one wouldn't think the possibility of nuclear annihilation would be the wellspring for a comedy, just as most people today wouldn't think the Holocaust is fodder for satire. Yet when Stanley Kubrick set out to do a straightforward dramatic film based on novelist Peter George's "Red Alert," a novel about an "accidental" nuclear attack on the Soviet Union by the United States, the more research and contemplation the director and co-screenwriter did on the subject of nuclear deterrence and all the nitty gritty of nuclear warfare, the more insane the whole theme seemed. So Kubrick -- no doubt aware that a similarly themed film (Fail-Safe) was underway -- gave in to his impulses and switched gears from drama to "dark" comedy.
Kubrick sets the tone right from the main title sequence. As the credits (and you have to see these yourself) roll, we see footage of a B-52 Stratofortress being refueled by a KC-135A aerial tanker. In the background, the very romantic strains of "Try a Little Tenderness" gives this aerial ballet an almost grotesque ironic counterpoint. Love music? In a scene depicting a nuclear bomber being refueled as it heads toward its fail-safe point?
Things get going, though, when Royal Air Force liaison officer Group Capt. Lionel Mandrake (Peter Sellers) gets an unexpected phone call from Burpleson AFB's B-52 wing commander, Gen. Jack D.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By "theguytoo" on 9 Jan 2004
Format: DVD
This and numerous other satirical tongue-in-cheek quotes will be found throught this fine film. It is as funny as it is frightening and outlines a world where the threat of 'the bomb' is right on everyone's doorstep. In it you'll be pleased to find an all-star cast including Peter Sellers, (who does a fantastic job playing 3 characters all by himself) George C. Scott, and a young James Earl Jones. That's right, folks...the Bell Atlantic Man himself in charge of a nuclear payload aboard his very own B-17. Sellers plays the President, Group Captain Lyonel Mandrake, and the mysterious and chilling Dr. Strangelove. If you know anything about the Cold War era, give this one a try...you'll love it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Man from poundstretcher on 20 Feb 2012
Format: Blu-ray
Mr Kubrick' best film. Spectacular pristine black and white cinematography catch every tic (on dvd).
As an anti war director Stan had previous form -also see Paths of Glory which highlighted the futility, and corruption of -and by, the powerful in 1st World War France. With "Dr Strangelove..." the whole is greater than the sum of its many brilliant parts.
Here flouridation is cited as the cause of a US airbase commander' reason for bringing Armageddon. The hawks circle initially ready to carve up the percieved victory, gradually it dawns that they are become vultures.
They realise that "the plan" has failed and that the war has been lost before it has been declared.
The finale -culminating in Slim Pickens last Rodeo ride on the last bomb especially vivid backed by an ironic We'll meet again (- dont know where dont know when...)
The venality (and naivety) of politicians, soldiers and cogniscenti are beautifully co-ordinated by an ensemble cast. Bravura performances from Peters Sellers, George C Scott and Slim Pickens.
The tone hugely influenced Black Adder goes forth (my opinion) and the satire and horror mix wonderfully uneasily. A reverse visualisation of TS Elliot's expectation that the world ends on a whimper, with Dante to follow.... played out as farce. Another must see. AAA+
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59 of 66 people found the following review helpful By Remus on 17 Oct 2010
Format: Blu-ray
You'll have to read the product description for all the extras and subtitled languages - what interests me is the film itself.

To say the film is perfect would be stretching the truth a little. The trouble (as viewers of the various DVD editions will know) is that Dr Strangelove was not filmed in a consistent aspect ratio, so every subsequent editor has to decide how to combine the full frame shots (1.33:1) with the matte in camera shots (1.66:1). To me it seems obvious that the open matte scenes were meant to be cropped to match the rest, but obvious is not a term usually associated with Kubrick. Nevertheless the makers of the blu-ray have done just this, presenting the entire film in 1.66:1. This results in thin vertical black lines either side of the picture when viewed on a 16:9 television, or an equal-sized border when viewed on a 1920x1200 monitor.

In my opinion this is a better solution than the mixed format of all the DVD releases. Besides which, this is how the film was originally seen in cinemas - at least in Europe; in the US it was apparently projected in 1.85:1. However, various sources (mostly tied with the mixed-aspect ratio LaserDisc and DVD releases) assert that Kubrick actually intended the film be projected in mixed format.

Then there is the matter of picture quality. Kubrick sometimes seemed to go out of his way to find grainy film stock, but in this case it was probably justified as the entire film is shot at night (even on the bomber flying over Russia). What this means, however, is that the blu-ray is not the dramatic improvement over DVD that is seen in other films. But I think this is as good as it gets.
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