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One Million Years BC [DVD] 
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A fantasy adventure from the prehistoric times. Raquel Welch and John Richardson fight for their love and their lives against the dinosaurs (brought to life by Ray Harryhausen's ground-breaking effects).
One Million Years B.C. might be about as palaeontologically accurate as The Flintstones, but it's still a lasting kitsch masterpiece, as much for Raquel Welchs Amazonian presence in an abbreviated fur bikini as for Ray Harryhausens wonderful stop-motion dinosaurs. A rare big-budget venture from Hammer Films, this 1966 version of the 1940 Victor Mature classic One Million B.C. is set in a fantasised prehistory where Caucasian cavemen coexist with dinosaurs. Loana (Welch) of the Shell People teaches Tumak (John Richardson) of the Rock Tribe that harmonious cooperation on the beach is a better way of life than rule-of-the-mightiest savagery in caves.
Every quarter of an hour, the gibberish-spouting ("Akita akita"), skin-wearing, remarkably clean cave folk are inconvenienced by special effects: a giant sea turtle, a hungry Allosaur, a Triceratops/Iguanodon battle, a Pterodactyl that wants to feed Raquel to its chicks, a major volcanic upheaval. Poster icon Welch gets stiff competition from a lithe Martine Beswick in a cat fight, and the camp goings-on are given real screen presence by gorgeous, primitive Canary Isles locations and an epic score from Mario Nascimbene.
On the DVD: One Million Years B.C. arrives on DVD with minimal extras: a wonderfully ballyhoo-intensive trailer, plus nice little retrospective chats with Welch and Harryhausen. The picture is an anamorphic print of the original 1.85:1 ratio, and sound is Dolby mono.--Kim Newman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
I also watched the version from the HAMMER COLLECTION and this scene (as well as others) was not cut from the film. I watched the Hammer version on my 42inch plasma, and the picture and colour quality were great.
Unless you are very squeamish, please get the Hammer version. The DVD version to avoid is the one with the blue background featuring a close-up of Raquel Welch, who admittedly looks a lot more stunning in this picture cover than Hammer's. John Anglos.
This DVD release is anamorphic widescreen. It appears to be the uncut version of the film, but it's running time is 96 minutes. However, all other sources state that the original release version is 100 minutes in length. But the deleted scenes ( edited from the American release ) listed at the Internet Movie Database are all here in this Optimum Classic "Hammer Collection" DVD.
Interviews with Ray Harryhausen and Raquel Welch are included.
The audio is not "stereo" ( as listed on the back of the DVD keep case ) - it is actually mono.
There is no theatrical trailer included with the special features.
The film print used here is merely adequate. There are some scratches and some debris throughout this particular presentation. What we all need here is a Lowry Digital type of restoration.
The final three minutes of the film on this DVD are in black and white for some unfathomable reason.
This is a single-layer DVD disc with only 4.13 GB of material on it and is not recorded at the highest quality standard as with a typical 9 GB dual-layer disc. In other words, too much compression for my tastes. I don't know about any of you out there, but I want Raquel Welch and the Dino FX to be as clear and sharp as possible for a standard definition DVD.
Plot is slight. Two tribes exist in prehistoric times, the Rock People and the Shell People. The former are more aggressive and basic, the latter more forward and assured. Tumak (John Richardson) of the Rocks and Loana (Welch) wind up together, fighting prejudices and lots of giant beasties! Hooray!
That's really it, the message is clear but ultimately we are here for the dinosaurs and giant creatures (well OK, the scantily clad cave dwellers as well), with Harryhausen once again showing why he was a legend in his field of animation. With good fights, a bit of sexy sizzle and a volcanic finale, it's all good really.
It's no history lesson of course, but as Harryhausen was wont to say, they wasn't making a film for history professors! 7/10
The stop-motion animation was cutting edge at the time and, although some people will mock the dated effects, to me, it is still very enjoyable.
The US version by 20th Century Fox is a restored but cut version in 16:9 widescreen, and the Warner Bros. Studio Canal version is uncut but formatted in the older 4:3 widescreen (i.e. with four black bars surrounding the image).
One Million Years BC is notable for two things:
The late great Ray Harryhausen's animated dinosaurs which for decades were the most effective depiction of these creatures until Jurassic Park, and the nubile Raquel Welch, who looks absolutely stunning!
A great adventure fantasy and silliness at its most entertaining!
I have been collecting some "babe" movies. This European version was the full length which suited me very well. This movie for its time period was well made, produced, directed, and acted. It is understandable "modern" viewers would not see it in the same light as I do. Jurassic Park is certainly above this, but if Mr. Hausen (spelling) had the same access to computers, I believe he may have even made that Jurassic Park even better.
Some computer guru's I know have 1,000,000 BC in their collections and consider it essential for their histories of special effects. A casual viewer would probably not enjoy this, but people such as my self and geeks can find value in it. John
Most Recent Customer Reviews
You have to watch the interview with Raquel in the extras to appreciate this 60's classic.Published 4 months ago by Matthew Cox
To truly get this film, you have to approach it as a surreal experience. There is no dialogue other than "caveman talk", paleontology is cheerfully ignored, the simple... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Kenneth Sohl