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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dr. Who & The Daleks [Blu-ray]
Dr. Who and the Daleks [1965], the first Doctor Who film and the first colour appearance of the Doctor, has finally been released on Blu-ray by Studio Canal to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the beloved sci-fi programme, which premiered on BBC Television in 1963. The release also coincides with the hundred year anniversary of famed actor Peter Cushing's birth, who...
Published 13 months ago by Andrew C. Miller

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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "...whole restoration deserves appreciation...but (the Extras are) disappointing..."
With the television series celebrating its 50th anniversary of forcing children - and even some adults, I'm sure - to scurry behind the sofa or cower beneath one of its cushions, the release of STUDIOCANAL's DOCTOR WHO tie-in movies is adroitly timed and not only for that celebratory reasoning but for the fact that the Peter Cushing films are frequently derided and an...
Published 13 months ago by The EYE OF HORUS Editor


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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "...whole restoration deserves appreciation...but (the Extras are) disappointing...", 6 Jun 2013
With the television series celebrating its 50th anniversary of forcing children - and even some adults, I'm sure - to scurry behind the sofa or cower beneath one of its cushions, the release of STUDIOCANAL's DOCTOR WHO tie-in movies is adroitly timed and not only for that celebratory reasoning but for the fact that the Peter Cushing films are frequently derided and an intelligent analysis of their importance, not only within the DOCTOR WHO universe but assessing their role in British cinema in general.

Certainly, it would be remise of STUDIOCANAL to merely re-issue DR WHO AND THE DALEKS and DALEKS' INVASION EARTH 2150 A.D. with new sleeve artwork and unceremoniously blow-off-the-dust in order to capitalise on DOCTOR WHO fan's whetted appetite in this anniversary year.

Sadly, that's what has happened, and whilst the two original print negatives have been meticulously cleaned & restored to their glorious Technoscope magnificence the releases have failed equally magnificently to provide a new array of intelligent, insightful, analytical `value added material' (VAM) or `Extras' that provides viewers with new appreciation.

And, regrettably, even the majority of the five VAMs are surreally obtuse and, seemingly, hurriedly written & filmed that result in an embarrassing mélange of mediocrity.

The VAM content could have been so much improved if - where's TARDIS when you need `her'? - STUDIOCANAL had researched and reviewed the `Extras' produced for BBC DVD's excellent DOCTOR WHO CLASSIC SERIES releases or had employed an independent production company, like London's PUP MEDIA LIMITED, to create an in-depth range of `Extras'.

Whilst that may seems harsh - yet honest - appraisal of the VAM, the RESTORING... featurettes is fascinating and demonstrates to all DOCTOR WHO fans the diligence of the Restoration Team as they, frame-by-frame, skilfully ensures that our enjoyment is not undermined or spoilt as we nonchalantly settle down in from of the screen, Tortilla Chips and cup of tea in hand, to lose ourselves within space-time. Frequently, DOCTOR WHO fan take everything for granted so understanding the lengths producers extend to will only enhance their enjoyment of the film or episode.

One question; who is Gareth Owen, and why was he allowed to be filmed in a `screening room' that contained grubby-stained headrest chairs that was only emphasised in using high-definition cameras? Why do I ask? Simply, his diatribe was so soporific that my attention, like a TARDIS key `perception filter' (see THE SOUND OF DRUMS [2007]), waivered of subject. Not impressive and forgettable, and 'the voice of the Daleks', Nicholas Briggs, may have been a more apposite contributor. By the way, he's the author of THE SHEPPERTON STORY.

In DALEKMANIA, the rise and rise in popularity of Terry Nation's seminal aliens is dexterously detailed with interview clips from the writer, cast and crew in addition to inter-linking narrative from 1960's `scamps' visiting a `flea-pit' managed by a familiar DOCTOR WHO actor, Michael (the original Davros) Wisher. Previously released on VHS and DVD, this is certainly a featurette that could have benefited from a `clean-up', however it remains entertaining and informative as it chronicles the development, filming and promotion of DR WHO AND THE DALEKS and its successor.

However, with that said, the restoration of the original print is masterful, with every frame pin-sharp, Mondrian saturated colour that delivers a richness of depth & clarity and an audio track devoid of distortion, drop-out or flanging that reverberates with both subtlety and expansionism. The on-screen image is so clear that you can clearly see the body definition of the 'Dalek Operator' through its neck gauze, in addition to the weave on the Doctor's waistcoat.

Without hesitation, the whole restoration deserves your attention and appreciation.

Of course, the story plotting echoes Nation's original screenplay for the 1963 seven-part story, (known as) DOCTOR WHO - THE DALEKS, truncating the meandering televised version into a responsive adventure story that is relentless in its pace. Here, the titular character, the Doctor (surname: Who) has invented TARDIS that accidentally transports the hapless, fidgety Ian (the engaging Roy Castle), Barbara (Jennie Linden) and the inventor's granddaughter, Susan (Roberta Tovey) to the radiation plagued planet of Skaro - home to two disparate life-forms, the Thals and, encased in `metal travel machines', the Daleks.

Overall, whilst the `value added material' is disappointing and bereft of care & attention, it is the film's print restoration that redeems the release (issued by STUDIOCANAL both on standard DVD and Blu-Ray) and is wholly recommended.

However, there is a caveat, the Extras are poor and, seemingly, hurriedly compiled and produced without the crafting that DOCTOR WHO fans worldwide have come to expect from having access to BBC DVD's CLASSIC SERIES releases. If STUDIOCANAL had thought through the content then viewers may have been treated to, perhaps, a .pdf of the filming script or storyboarding, new CGI special effects option, extensive biographical profiles of the actors (this re-mastered release may be the first encounter by a young fan of Peter Cushing) and a NOW AND THEN feature.

Sadly, a missed opportunity to truly celebrate the TARDIS' only forays onto the `big screen'.

And so to DALEKS' INVASION EARTH 2150 A.D. ...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great film, average blu-ray., 6 Sep 2013
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Mr. D. A. Glover "Dave Strange" (Hampshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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If you already own the DVD version of this film, I'd suggest waiting a couple of years to pick up the blu-ray at a bargain price, as the HD transfer barely makes a difference. Honestly 'Dr. Who & The Daleks.' has never looked better, but clearly the source material was beyond improving.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dr. Who & The Daleks [Blu-ray], 2 Jun 2013
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Dr. Who and the Daleks [1965], the first Doctor Who film and the first colour appearance of the Doctor, has finally been released on Blu-ray by Studio Canal to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the beloved sci-fi programme, which premiered on BBC Television in 1963. The release also coincides with the hundred year anniversary of famed actor Peter Cushing's birth, who stars here as the first non-canon Doctor. What does non-canon mean, in terms of the famous adventurer? Since the show first began with William Hartnell starring as the intelligent, if somewhat abrasive humanoid alien known as the Doctor, to date there have been eleven different actors appearing as the Doctor due to his ability to regenerate in different forms.

Peter Cushing is not considered part of that pantheon because his character, despite being known as Dr. Who, bears few things in common with the Doctor of the television show, such as his love of science, travel, and adventure. Specifically, Cushing's Doctor is a human, not an alien, whose surname just happens to be Who. Despite also featuring the Doctor's most infamous nemeses, Dr. Who and the Daleks is not an official Doctor Who film, but rather an attempt by British studio Amicus to continue competing with Hammer Studios. The two studios often ran neck to neck with horror films and adventure movies, and this film was Amicus's attempt to compete with Hammer's more family-friendly pirate and dinosaur-themed adventure films. Other than an intelligent, science-oriented character named Dr. Who, the villainous Daleks, and the Doctor's T.A.R.D.I.S. time vessel, Dr. Who and the Daleks bears almost no relationship to the Doctor Who Television Series.
The Film was Co-written by Amicus founder Milton Subotsky and Doctor Who scribe and Dalek creator Terry Nation, Dr. Who and the Daleks was an attempt to cash in on Dalekmania, the Dalek craze that swept Britain during the early 1960s following Doctor Who's establishment. A scientist named Doctor Who [Peter Cushing] invents a police box-shaped time machine known as the T.A.R.D.I.S. He shows the machine to his two granddaughters, Susan [Roberta Tovey] and Barbara [Jennie Linden], as well as to Barbara's clumsy boyfriend Ian [Roy Castle]. Ian trips and accidentally activates the machine, sending them light years away to a strange, hostile planet occupied by Daleks, militant robots determined to take over the world. Furthermore, the Daleks have enslaved a peaceful, humanoid race, the Thals. Doctor Who and his family work with the Thals to escape from the diabolical snare of the Daleks and potential radiation poisoning.

Audiences will find plenty to love here, as the film is fun, colourful, over the top, and packed with amazing, era-appropriate scenery. Amicus certainly spared no expense on the set, which was shot in Technicolor and looks simply incredible. From the Dalek city to the petrified jungle, the film seems to have had some influence on later sci-fi films. This is definitely a film for children and adults of all ages.

Released in a 1080p resolution and 2.35:1 aspect ratio, Doctor Who and the Daleks has been digitally re-mastered and presented in HD and on Blu-ray for the first time. The Technicolor looks wonderful and the otherworldly, fantasy elements of the set look fantastic here. The bold colours and imaginative set pieces are one of the strongest reasons to get this amazing Blu-ray disc, and they look better here than they probably ever have.

Audio: There is a Mono 2.0 LPCM English language track that sounds decent and only has a slight hiss. Though some of the dialogue it is a little low, everything sounds clear and the almost constant Dalek-related special effects sound great.
Extras: Audio Commentary with Roberta Tovey and Jenny Linden / Dalekmania / Restoring Dr. Who And The Daleks (new!) / Interview With Gareth Owen (new!), but for some unknown reason the sound is slightly weird / Stills Gallery / Trailer. These releases are accompanied by a host of specially created new extras including a look at the restoration work and brand new interviews. There's a very entertaining and informative audio commentary track with female stars Roberta Tovey and Jenny Linden. A very enjoyable documentary about the Daleks, Dalekmania, is included, as is a feature about the restoration work done on Doctor Who and the Daleks. There are also a few new, albeit short interviews, though none of these can compare to the commentary track with Tovey and Linden.

If you're a fan of British adventure films and love Peter Cushing, it comes highly recommended for the sheer fun factor. Dr. Who and the Daleks was followed by a less successful sequel, Daleks -- Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D., which also starred Peter Cushing and has also been released on Blu-ray simultaneously by Studio Canal. Be forewarned that these are both Region B disc releases and U.S. fans can only watch them with a region B or multi-region Blu-ray player.

Finally, I originally had the Two Doctor Who films on the The Dalek Collection [2 PAL Dics] and was at the time the best way to view these films on ones Homes Cinema set up, but of course with this Blu-ray release it is now my ultimate collection and if your a true Doctor Who fan, then this will be your ultimate viewing enjoyment and give you endless hours of sci-fi enjoyment.

Mr. Andrew C. Miller [Your True Film Buff]
Le Cinema Paradiso
WARE, United Kingdom
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4.0 out of 5 stars Doctor Who and the Daleks., 27 Feb 2014
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Peter Cushing throws off his Hammer House of Horror charactors to play a loveable Doctor .... such a change from William Hartnell.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed with the Dr, 29 Jan 2014
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For a bid screen Dr Who adventure I found it never came close to the original TV series and had very poor visual effects.
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5.0 out of 5 stars SUBTITLES?, 20 Sep 2013
Could anyone tell me if the Blu-Ray is for deaf and hard of hearing? I would really appreciate your response.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Doctor Who, 26 Jun 2013
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Jonathan G. Lloyd "JOn" (Chestefield, UK) - See all my reviews
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This is the first Film outing for Doctor Who and perhaps the best film yet. This was based on the second TV story staring William Hartnell. really enjoyable film worth watching again and again
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'Now on the Big Screen In Colour', 2 Jun 2013
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This is a great release, with a fantastic 2.35:1 picture. A clean,detailed image with mild film grain of course.
Sound is Mono, and is once again very clear and crisp.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth waiting for this to come out, 31 May 2013
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This review is from: Dr Who And The Daleks [DVD] (DVD)
Have been looking out for this for some time so am pleased it is now out and I can enjoy watching it
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars dr who the movie, 19 Aug 2013
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More dr who in blu ray HD 1080p with excellent picture and colour and more delaks.Brilliant.
A must for any dr who fan.
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Dr Who And The Daleks [DVD]
Dr Who And The Daleks [DVD] by Gordon Flemyng (DVD - 2013)
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