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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 17 March 2014
Three splendid Hammer sci-fi films come to blu ray. Quatermass Xperiment is the best transfer of the three as it's a full HD transfer but Quatermass 2 (with the exception of the appalling opening sequence filmed at night which is very dark and grainy on several DVD releases and looks dreadful on this blu ray although the BBC have a fabulous transfer where the picture is perfect!!) and "X the Unknown" (where the sound balance between music and speech has not been properly calibrated) are generally quite good if possibly not up to the SD DVDs previously available from DD. It's just a shame that the three films weren't all restored and made available in full HD as they are truly fine examples of early and very imaginative sci/fi.
The films are fascinating on many levels and are fast paced and very well directed and acted. The first Quatermass is particularly interesting in its evocation of a lost London and a lost way of life. Yes - the past is another country - they did things differently there. While Quatermass Two is very chilling in its matter of fact depiction of an alien conspiracy. X the Unknown, directed by Barry Norman's father is a clever and quite nasty depiction of another sci-if threat - this time not from the stars but the bowels of the earth. I'm delighted to say that each film is in its complete and uncensored format which allows us to glimpse some horrid special effects denied the original British public! Great fun! A recommended purchase!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 30 November 2014
...so decrees Brian Donlevy’s maverick, dictatorial (and American) scientist Bernard Quatermass in relation to the 'alien life form’ brought back to earth in Val Guest’s 1955 sci-fi/horror 'classic’ (an early Hammer/Exclusive production) – although the 'invader’ looks variously like an overdone omelette and thence an octopus, as the 'forces for good’ look to atone for their overly optimistic precognitions. And, even though Guest’s film certainly has its fair share of hammy acting (particularly during the opening sequences of the aftermath of the space rocket crash) and dodgy special effects, it still manages to enthral and excite (admittedly sometimes with tongue firmly in cheek) in the same way of other classics of the genre such as The Thing From Another World, The Invasion Of The Body Snatchers and The Day The Earth Stood Still (and with pointers to Hammer’s own Frankenstein/Dracula films and zombie films such as Night Of The Living Dead).

In similar vein to the (for me) superior Howard Hawks’ production The Thing From Another World, at the heart of Guest’s film is the 'battle’ between scientists wishing to embrace 'all things alien’ (despite the risks) and the forces of law and order (here, semi-comically represented by Jack Warner’s ironic 'hello, hello, hello’ copper, Inspector Lomax) – and with the public and the press’ prurient interest clambering in the background for access to more 'gory detail’. The film, of course, now appears dated with its 'Trumpton-style’ fire engine and bantering police ('You’d think it was a Bank Holiday the way they come flocking out’) during the opening crash sequence, following which the 'mad scientists’ get to work on Richard Wordsworth’s surviving (and increasingly peaky-looking) 'astronaut’ Victor Caroon. Thereafter, we’re in 'botched experiment gone wrong’ territory as Caroon’s wife (a suitably OTT histrionic Margia Dean) unwittingly sets the 'monster’ free, setting up some nice encounters, first with an innocent young girl offering tea and cakes and thence with an increasingly agitated zoo full of animals, before proceeding to the splendour of Westminster Abbey for the set-piece (though rather underwhelming) finale.

In addition to Donlevy’s serious scientist there are also impressive turns from David King-Wood as Quatermass’ upstanding British counterpart, Dr Gordon Briscoe, and from Thora Hird as an eccentric tramp, Rosie. Throughout Walter Harvey’s cinematography is nicely evocative with its (predominantly) night-time London setting and James Berbard’s score is suitably ominous (much vibrato strings) – together providing for 90 minutes of solid entertainment.
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on 3 February 2014
Damn fine British scifi, made by Hammer before they went full-horror, with Brian Donlevy doing a great scientist-as-sociopath in his portrayal of Bernard Quatermass, and Richard Worsworth doing a great turn as Victor Caroon, a man slowly being overtaken by an alien intelligence in a performance often (rightly) compared to Karloff's performance in the original Frankenstein. Some great touches, including rising tension in a zoo where the off-camera monster lurks, followed by the sight of dead, desiccated animals throughout the zoo the next morning, fine music, a documentary style that really serves to make you uneasy. One of the great scifi movies of the 50s.
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on 31 December 2015
Well what an absolute bargain, included within the Blu Ray disc are two of my favourite films , Quatermass 2 and X The Unknown full movies, if you are in doubt whether to buy this item let me assure you it's a no brainer, go for it.
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on 23 November 2015
An excellent film with bonus content. Collectors note, this edition both Blu-Ray and DVD appear to be PAL transfers, with the same running times, despite what is printed on the sleeve. From what I have gathered most blu rays are progressive scan mastererd and should have the same running time as the original 24 fps cinema prints, which is what you normally get on US & Japan NTS DVDs.
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on 1 June 2014
Unfortunate this bargain isn't available in the UK on Blu ray, but region free and what even better is , Quatermass 2 and X the Unknown is in this collection both on Blu ray , if your a fan of Hammer films this is for you ! i a Shipping time of four weeks may be too long for some , but i only paid a couple of pounds postage !!
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on 10 October 2014
This is a film I have had in my collection for some time and I usually go for the Blu-ray version when it becomes available.
Overall, the quality of the film is good but the DVD version compares well with it.
The surprise bonus is the special features. They list Quatermass 2 and X The Unknown and I assumed they would be theatrical trailers but no, they are the complete films and before buying this edition I also had them on DVD.
Again, the picture quality is good but Quatermass 2 suffers from a grainy picture for the first 10 minutes or so. After that, no problems.
For it's time, the special effects are good but the American actor Brian Donlevy, who played the professor in the first two Quatermass movies comes over as quite an abrasive character! If you get the chance, compare it with Andrew Keirs' portrayal in Quatermass and the Pit, also available on Blu-ray or for the really homely Professor, see Andre Morell who had the leading role in the TV version of The Pit which, due to being a 6 part series, gives the opportunity to flesh out the other characters.
So, three films for the price of one. Go for it!
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on 20 May 2014
THIS IS A MUST MOVIE FOR ANYONES COLLECTION,THE PEOPLE IN ENGLAND AT THE TIME OF MAKING THIS MOVIE DID A TERRIFIC JOB. AS MOST PEOPLE IN MY GENERATION KNOE ,THE 50'S MADE THE BEST HORROR MOVIES. IN THIS MOVIE THE STORY IS ABOUT A SPACE SHIP COMING BACK TO EARTH, BUT SOMETHING IS VERY WRONG. THE ACTORS FROM UNITED KINGDOM WERE SUPERB, AND THE DESERVE THE CREDIT FOR HELP MAKING HORROR & SCIENCE FICTION MOVIES A CLASSIC. THIS MOVIE STARTS WITH A PROBLEM TWO OF THE GUYS IN THE SPACE SHIP ARE GONE AND THE 3RD ONE HAS A PROBLEM. I WILL TELL YOU THE THIRD GUY TURNS INTO A CREATURE,THAT MUST BE DESTROYED. GREAT ACTING, LOCATIONS, AND A MASTERPIECE MUSIC SCORE. BUY THIS DVD FOR YOUR COLLECTION, YOU WILL NOT BE SORRY.
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on 2 May 2016
This is another A1 Hammer film (Sci fi) from early 50's
This started it all for Hammer.
Great value as there are 3 films on the blu ray and the
quality is very good for films of this era.
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on 20 October 2015
Looks great, nice to see in blu ray
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