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88 of 90 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A show 28 years in the making, comes brilliantly to life
I can only assume if you far enough to read this review, you are a fan, or at least an owner, of the album of Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of `The War of the Worlds'. If you are, then I think you will be pleasantly surprised what a fantastic job they did bringing this to the stage so true to its original form, and then of course on to DVD. If not in on what its all...
Published on 6 Jun 2007 by Mr. Stephen Kennedy

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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lack of clarity
I was really looking forward to playing the DVD and certainly the orchestration was brilliant. I was however aware of other reviewers saying about the difficulty in hearing the singers above the orchestra. I decided to purchase the DVD anyway as there were many positive reviews.

Sadly the reviews concerning the sound were correct as when the singing started the...
Published on 5 Jan 2012 by Mr Mahzooz


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88 of 90 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A show 28 years in the making, comes brilliantly to life, 6 Jun 2007
By 
Mr. Stephen Kennedy "skenn1701a" (Doha, Qatar) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The War Of The Worlds Live : Special Edition [2 disc] [DVD] (DVD)
I can only assume if you far enough to read this review, you are a fan, or at least an owner, of the album of Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of `The War of the Worlds'. If you are, then I think you will be pleasantly surprised what a fantastic job they did bringing this to the stage so true to its original form, and then of course on to DVD. If not in on what its all about, then I urge you to still watch this - it's a unique album, and a unique stage experience.

The show itself uses a mixture of elements. The orchestra and the band are on stage, and various characters walk on and act and sing their roles. This all works very well, with a dramatic backdrop of sub-cinema standard cgi graphics going on, on the massive screen behind the orchestra. In addition, a large almost life sized Martian's Fighting Machine has been made, and even Richard Burton is featured - not just his voice, but an animated projection of his head, on a large sculpted bust hung above the stage. In fact, these two much-hyped elements of the show are the weakest. If you can't have the real Richard Burton, they should have stuck to his voice, instead of a rather unconvincingly animated photograph. And the Fighting Machine has undeniable scale, but for all that adds little to proceedings.

No, the star of the show is the music and the musicians. There are some of the original participants involved.. some of the musicians involved were on the original album, such as Justin Hayward singing the ever popular `Forever Autumn', and Chris Thompson reprising his `Thunder Child'. The other participants are now either dead or too old for the roles.. so we have (surprisingly) Russell Watson playing the Parson, and the less well known but perfectly cast Tara Blaise as Beth his wife, and the excellent Alexis James as the artilleryman - who may even be better than David Essex' version!

So apart from the show, what else is present on the two disc version..? Well, this is where the DVD crosses over from being an interesting rental to a worthwhile purchase.

There are a multitude of extras - some of them the usual `This-is-how-we-made-it' publicity, and some uninvolving talking heads. However, there is a one hour long documentary of the tour, which is amazingly candid. This shows the principal contributors from an early stage as they start rehearsing, through to the first night and some footnotes from the end of the brief tour. Worthwhile moments are - the tension as the original cgi efforts do not impress, Russell Watson acting surprisingly childishly, and seeing some of the rather excellent unsung heroes - the understudies.. the male understudy actually had to understudy all 4 male parts, and when Watson twists his ankle he is called upon and succeeds admirably. The final conversation with Wayne suggest the show could be back - a tantalising thought for all those like me who missed it this time round.

All in all - timeless music, great musicians, and a pretty good show with excellent sound, packaged with genually entertaining extras - what's not to like?
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45 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jeff Waynes The War of The Worlds 30th Anniversary Edition [DVD], 5 May 2009
By 
Mr. J. MCKEE "JasMac62" (Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Having been a fan of the Musical since it's first release in the late 70's and then the CD in the 80's I had always wanted to see a live stage version of this.
When it was announced that Jeff Wayne's The War of The Worlds was to go on the road I wondered how they would pull it off.
I must admit I rushed to buy tickets and waited in anticipation for the night of the stage show.
Well the night came and I have to admit that I was not disappointed. The show was a complete success. Well done to everyone involved.

The DVD of the show does not disappoint either. The complete show is included along with many interviews with Jeff Wayne and members of the cast.
There are several audio selections including 5.1 surround sound.

The 30th anniversary edition of the DVD includes the war of the worlds novel and art card and promo flyer.

I would recommend this to anyone who loves the musical and has not been able to go along to a live show or to anyone who loves good music.

Oh yeah and......... what a great price.
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54 of 56 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars War of Words for War of the Worlds, 28 Oct 2006
By 
V "moodswinger" (Tunbridge Wells, Kent) - See all my reviews
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This DVD of the Royal Albert Hall performance provides a visual representation of all that was so great about listening to the original album when it first came out. The fact that they tried hard to represent the late Richard Burton by using a lookalike actor projected into a face mould hovering above the stage, rather than replacing his mellifluous Celtic tones is but one thing that makes the stage version so interesting.

A lot of the original 'cast' appear here, including Chris Thompson (Thunderchild) and Justin Hayward (a superb rendition of both Eve of the War and one of the high points of the album, his 1978 top five hit, Forever Autumn). Musically, it is almost a complete replica of the album - which is actually what you want from the stupendous double-album that is now almost 30 years old. What you want from a stage show you get, with a thirty feet high fighting machine descending on to the stage, a filmic backdrop with an introductory CGI short of the Mars landscape leading to their intended colonisation of Earth, and the frisson you get when the familiar orchestral string chords come in.

Jeff Wayne conducts the orchestra and old stalwarts Chris Spedding and Herbie Flowers are there at the forefront too. The only disappointment for me was the horrendous over-acting and misplaced attempts at operatic delivery by Russell Watson as the preacher. But this was completely tempered by the Soldier and his ability to evoke the fear and despair through his performance of David Essex's album song and through his actions.

Overall, the stage version could have been embarrassingly trite or completely above expectation. The trepidation I felt before the performance was completely blown away once those chords from the string section chimed in.

If you couldn't get a ticket to the stage show then get this DVD - it is a brilliant enhancement to the fantastic vinyl original!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars marvellous, 7 Nov 2006
By 
A. Mcmahon (notts) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The War Of The Worlds Live : Special Edition [2 disc] [DVD] (DVD)
my son and i went to see this show at the nec at nottingham and i have never seen a show so faithful to the original. the none stopp energy of the production is very satisfying. my son told me that the sound coming from the speaker above us was actually making his shirt sleeves flap. some bass that. we went to look at the mixers after and counted no less than 8 computers running the show. amazing. indescribable. unforgettable
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning!, 15 Mar 2007
By 
This review is from: The War Of The Worlds Live : Special Edition [2 disc] [DVD] (DVD)
Like another reviewer, I first heard the original album about 30 years ago, and I have continued to play it over the years...ultimately replacing it with the CD and still playing it often (such as this morning while driving to work).

Please be forewarned-if you are one of the original 12 million album owners, then you will quickly become addicted to this production. Unbelieveably, Mr. Wayne has actually improved on the original, and the sound quality is extraordinary.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A spectacular show - buy this DVD!, 22 May 2007
By 
This review is from: The War Of The Worlds Live : Special Edition [2 disc] [DVD] (DVD)
If you are a fan of the original recording then this DVD is a genuine, bona fide, 100% "must-buy" item. Even on my modest (by today's standards) 28" TV the visuals really excel and the 5.1 surround sound mix brings the music and effects to life like you've never heard before! (Trust me - if you haven't got a surround sound system, go and buy one just to experience this DVD in all its audio glory!)

As soon as I finished watching the DVD, I went online and bought my tickets to this year's show - I can't wait!
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars LIVE ENTERTAINMENT THAT IS OUT OF THIS WORLD!!!, 5 Nov 2006
By 
SUZANNE ADLER (BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND) - See all my reviews
I've been a fan of live entertainment since a young girl - be it West End shows (musicals my favourite) or concerts of all shapes and sizes. My husband and I recently discovered Jeff Wayne's recording of The War of The Worlds so when we read that it was being presented live across the UK, we booked tickets that included taking our 9 year old daughter and 16 year old son as an Easter holiday treat. My 16 year old son was the most sceptic - it wasn't hip hop or r'n'b. By the time we left the arena (the NEC Birmingham) the 4 of us were all in agreement - The War of The Worlds live had set a new standard for family entertainment. My son the sceptic insisted I purchase not only the double CD but the then newly released ULLAdubULLA2 (the album of club remixes) and has not stopped listening to both since. As a live show I'm not even sure where to begin - the music is an already established classic, but to hear it live simply took it to another level. We were seated about 3/4's of the way back, and when the Martian Fighting Machine totally unexpectedly descended onto the stage having been somehow concealed from the audiences view, the gasps of astonishment from all around us were as one. Quite unbelievable, especially as it was firing Heat Ray's at the audience as it landed. During the intermission the amazing green eyes of the Fighting Machine scanned the audience and suddenly we were all relayed on the big screen, a fantastic touch. The giant 3D head of Richard Burton was mesmerising. It seemed to float over the stage throughout the show and was the perfect compliment to the live performances of the various guest artists playing superbly the roles that were first heard on Jeff's recording. Justin Hayward brought to life his perennial favourite `Forever Autumn', and giant screens projected feature film standard of animation that linked the story to precise timings. Jeff Wayne conducted his own work which made the whole evening that much more special. I don't know how much the show cost to produce, but for the price of the tickets that we paid, the audience was given a most fantastic night out particularly when you compare the prices of other shows with a fraction of the ingredients The War of The Worlds contained. The audience didn't let Jeff, the cast and musicians (58 in all) off the stage until well deserved standing ovations were given. As we left the NEC, we were most aware that the many thousands of people who bought tickets to see this show felt the same as our family - Jeff's masterpiece as a record had truly raised the bar for live entertainment. Will I be buying a copy of the DVD of the show? No I won't. I'm ordering around 10 copies as I know a number of friends and family who couldn't get tickets to the NEC who will be enthralled by this wonderful piece of live entertainment.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breathtaking, 30 Nov 2006
By 
F. Chalmers (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The War Of The Worlds Live : Special Edition [2 disc] [DVD] (DVD)
I missed out on a ticket for the 2006 tour - no way am I missing next year's tour. The concert - which lasts roughly 2 hours - is a treat for the eyes and ears, mixing live performances and CGI graphics to produce what is a truly unique experience. The performances are all excellent and the extras on the DVD are very interesting, ranging from behind the scenes rehearsals of certain songs, how Richard Burton's "head" was made, to a documentary of the making of the show which doesn't shy away from the outbursts and major strops certain performers throw. All in all, I can't recommend this DVD enough and I can't wait to see the show live.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly Amazing Production Captured on DVD, 12 Feb 2007
By 
Allan K. Hyde (South Australia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The War Of The Worlds Live : Special Edition [2 disc] [DVD] (DVD)
As an avid collector from Australia I saw an advertisement for this DVD in Mojo magazine and I quickly scoured all Australian sites I knew for a release date on this, but alas there wasn't one. I might add that as of writing for some unknown reason there is no scheduled release date for Australia. With this in mind I purchased a copy through Amazon and WOW, of all the DVD's I own this one ranks in the top three for sheer entertainment. I have been listening to the album for more years than I care to remember and this also surpasses any live "show " I have heard. If you are reading this from anywhere other than the UK do yourself a favour and order it on line because I doubt whether Universal has any immediate plans for an Australian release.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who would have believed?, 9 Feb 2007
By 
One large onion (Cambridgeshire UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The War Of The Worlds Live : Special Edition [2 disc] [DVD] (DVD)
I can still remember that day in the late seventies when I arranged to finish work early. I lost a whole hour just so I could fetch the original double album from my local record shop before it closed. So many years ago now...so many dizzying rotations of that prized and long since retired double album.

I can also remember a few years after that, purchasing it's modern replacement at the dawn of another era and being blown away by it's non-crackly perfection....the age of the CD had arrived.

And now here I stand at the foot of yet another era. Almost thirty years have disappeared behind me. Still breathing, but alas, now with eyes that strain to read the small-print on the old CD boxes....and with ears that continually plead for the number eleven setting of the Spinal Tap amplifiers.

I am now at the dawn of the DVD age...and life is still sweet...what we once only heard, we can now also see...and it's a true joy to behold. A precision made facsimile of it's former self. Great love seems to have been offered into every pore of this re-creation...and it shows. Yes, it's true that the past thirty years has sadly claimed a few of it's original cast members in various ways....but it is also true that the same thirty years has claimed none of it's power to electrify it's audience.

Yes, so many moons have now passed since my eager fingers first slid this album over that silver spindle...but still this cherished recording refuses to fade into memory...Why?...because in it's own unique way it is equal to anything Mozart, Beethoven or Bach ever offered up for public approval...A controversial comment?...maybe so, but I believe it's true...beloved and passionate works such as this only ever improve with age and never really fade into the mist of history.

I guess I'll not be around when this seemingly timeless album reaches future formats...maybe Hologramatical...3 Dimensional...or even Virtually Interactive Walk-In Vision....who knows?...all that is certain is that this album will be there...at the forefront...capturing new generations of lifelong fans who'll still be listening to Richard Burton's words and still be shuddering at and those three opening cords....Who would have believed?
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