Customer Review

72 of 75 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Seminal Sci Fi Classic, 30 April 2006
This review is from: The War of the Worlds (Special Edition) (1953) [DVD] (DVD)
Having been totally under whelmed by the new Tom Cruise version I came back to the original and everything fell into place again.

Unknown stars were deliberately chosen so the audience would concentrate on the drama. Gene Barry as the scientist Dr Clayton Forrester and Ann Robinson as Sylvia van Buren have the leading roles. They are low on chemistry but as there is no overt love interest this is not a problem

The 1953 special effects still stand up with the best. The best decision (although taken on financial grounds) was to eliminate the tripod legs of the Martian invaders and invent invisible force fields to hold the beautiful swan like monsters in the air enabling close ups as they methodically destroy everything in their path.

This is a film that deserves its' well loved classic status, does not date and will never disappoint however often it is viewed.

A lovely DVD preserving the original superb highly saturated Technicolor, with a good selection of extras.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 17 Dec 2008 14:58:53 GMT
Talky Tina says:
Right on!

Posted on 17 Dec 2008 17:51:20 GMT
Is this film in widescreen? It shows the aspect ratio at 1.85:1, which would be widescreen; however, the U.S. version is in full-screen, 1.33:1, and I'd love to have it in widescreen. Thanks.

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Sep 2011 20:07:19 BDT
Jeff Davies says:
If it says 1.85:1 you can probably bet it has black bars not only on the sides whare they should be but top and bottom as well, as so many of these wonderful films have. I don't think it was ever made in wide-screen was it? I wish someone would answer the question so I could buy it informed.

In reply to an earlier post on 7 Apr 2014 16:02:18 BDT
Substrata says:
A late reply to your question regarding "widescreen" version of Byron Haskin's "War of the Worlds" - Amazon's listings remain confusing and it's not simple to change them; this film was made not long before widescreen styled films began to be screened, so the way it's shown on DVD is how it was seen back in 1953 (and I saw it as a cheeky, under-age kid in a grubby little cinema, circa 1964).

As for the DVD releases, if this is in time to help, avoid the greenish cover release, the picture's dark and muddy, the audio is blurred too. The bright, cleaned up and sparkling (and "Who needs Blu-ray?") version is the one with the bright, sparkling, red and yellow dominant, cover. Some extras here also including a mildly amusing and informative narration.

In reply to an earlier post on 7 Apr 2014 16:11:07 BDT
Last edited by the author on 7 Apr 2014 16:14:57 BDT
Substrata says:
Late reply - "War of the Worlds" was seen in cinemas in 1.37.1. The "widescreen" type presentation began to be used for some films very soon after, a crowd-pulling presentation for crowd-pulling films - no doubt if it had been made 12 months later it would be wide.

I can't imagine this film in 1.85.1. Lord, it would be spectacular.
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