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on 17 April 2017
I enjoyed watching this series from the late 1970s. A super story, although the acting is a little wooden in places
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on 14 January 2018
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on 24 August 2017
Great old TV series concluding the whole Quatermass Story
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on 27 August 2015
Long unavailable on DVD, the final instalment of Nigel Kneale’s Quatermass saga now makes a welcome appearance on Blu-Ray, courtesy of Network. First transmitted in 1979, Kneale’s drama takes place in the relatively near future, with society on the verge of collapse and beset by the effects of gang violence, corrupt policing, and, in a clear nod to the programme’s historical moment, scheduled power cuts. At the same time, millions of young people are being increasingly drawn towards a mysterious cult, known as the Planet People, who believe they are destined to be transported to a new world. All of these conditions leave the human race prey to a mysterious alien power that targets gatherings at sites of ancient ritual, against which the former head of the British Rocket Group, Professor Bernard Quatermass, must pitch his wits. Kneale fans will be quick to recognise a number of familiar themes and pre-occupations – humanity’s innate violence, race memories, the vulnerability of science to political manoeuvring, and even a nod towards the kind of trashy TV he satirised in his dystopian play, The Year of the Sex Olympics – but it doesn’t quite reach the standard of his best work. In particular, the social comment, so rich and prescient in works like Quatermass and the Pit and The Year of the Sex Olympics, falls somewhat flat here – it now seems rather quaint, given that the serial appears so soon after the rise of the punk movement, that the Planet People, representing the youth in revolt, clearly owe more to sixties flower power. The serial is well directed, with Piers Haggard making good use of the resources available to convey the decline of British society; the acting, however, is variable, but I would still make a case for John Mills’s turn as Quatermass as one of his finest performances.

The only significant ‘extra’ in the set is an additional disc featuring The Quatermass Conclusion, an alternative feature-length edit of the serial. Inevitably, this version is rather uneven and lacks a lot of the qualities of the full serial, but it is still worth a watch, not just as an intriguing curio, but also because, as a previous reviewer has pointed out, it seems occasionally to contain some alternative takes not included in the original broadcast version. The set also comes with a booklet of viewing notes by Andrew Pixley, which are as well researched and as eminently readable as one has come to expect. However, my biggest praise must be saved for the high-definition restoration. Both versions look absolutely stunning, with the picture quality far superior to anything I would have imagined (or hoped) for in a 1970s TV serial. Whilst I may waver over whether or not the serial itself quite deserves full marks, I would unhesitatingly award five stars to this Blu-Ray set for the exceptional quality of the restoration and presentation of both versions of this important addition to the Kneale canon.
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on 15 October 2017
I was nine years old when I first saw this. The only other Quatermasses I had seen were the heavily sanitised Hammer versions and I had a bit of a shock. A LOT of a shock...

In retrospect, it follows on well from the pessimism, nihilism and bleakness of the original serials, which I have now seen. Of course, there's always that glimmer of hope that ensures man will continue his struggle into, and with, space.

The picture quality here is utterly top notch, I think Network got the original negatives and struck a print from those.

Highly recommended! If you like this try just about anything else by Nigel Kneale, he's a unique talent.
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on 22 August 2015
I watched this serial when it was televised back in 1979. Since then, I had only seen poor copies on VHS of the movie version which looked to come from an inferior source. I wanted to see the four part version again and pre ordered this set.

All four episodes are on the first disc. The picture quality can only be described as superb. Taken from the original 35mm elements, the colours and clarity are revelatory. The sound is in places disappointing. Whilst the picture could have been shot yesterday, the soundtrack can be somewhat flat and muddy in places although this does not spoil the enjoyment of the piece.

The second disc contains the aforementioned movie version presented here in a 16:9 "cinema crop". Its a highly edited version and there is over two episodes of material pruned. Again the picture and sound are better than the old VHS (obviously) but the pacing is off due to the major cuts, where for example vehicles magically move onto their sides in a cut. That said its quite an interesting version

Overall I would recommend the set as we need Network to continue remastering and releasing these classics as they should be seen.
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In the near future, Civilisation is crumbling through social decay. Through the decay, Professor Quatermass searches for his missing granddaughter. Meanwhile, an awesomely powerful beam of light is striking from the depths of outer space; each time apparently crowds of young people seem to just disappear. However, Quatermass and a young astronomer, Joe Kapp who is trying to investigate strange signals from space using the last working pieces of electronic equipment. They find the “Planet People” at a nearby stone circle, as on other recent occasions a light appears, the signal appears, - and the people disappear. Can this be a Russian plot? On the other hand, could it be something altogether more grisly purpose?

The premise for the narrative was very much a product of it times and was influenced by contemporary political events such as strikes, power cuts, the Oil Crisis and developments in the Space Race. The story while commissioned by the BBC was eventually brought to the TV by ITV. John Mills rendition of Professor Quatermass was apparently not well liked by Nigel Kneale who said he "didn't have the authority for Quatermass". Nigel Kneale was not too happy, in fact, with the entire ensemble – apart from the high production values.

My Thoughts:

I very much a fan of the late Nigel Kneale's’ work, and enjoyed his unique look at speculative fiction/chiller. While the special effects at times are rather ‘ropey’ specially​ the outer space scenes. I enjoyed this production and believe it is worthy of good four-star rating and still worth a viewing.
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on 27 July 2015
This is a great copy of the 1979 ITV (Euston Films I think) Quatermass Serial. The Picture quality on the Blu Ray is fantastic, a crisp and clear transfer of the 4:3 aspect 35mm film. 1 disc has the 4 episodes, 2nd Disc the edited movie version.

I really enjoyed the story, though a word of warning for the un-initiated, the bleak future it shows and the conclusion will really kick you in the guts. We need more UK sci-fi like this. :o)

John Mills and Simon McCorkindale were both panned by the critics at the time for their work on this serial - but both are fine in the roles. Oh, and see if you can spot 70s/80s pop star Toyah Wilcox, and Chris Quentin from Coronation Street (years ago) in blink and you'll miss 'em roles.

5 stars - great purchase
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on 7 March 2017
Very ambitious and intelligent sifi from the 1970s. The effects are on the basic side but the powerful storyline and excellent performances make this a riviting watch.
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on 26 July 2015
Just a quick review of the picture and sound quality on the Blu-ray. It's outstanding. It could have been recorded yesterday. You will never have seen this show in better quality.
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