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4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 5 January 2017
All time favourite film, well one of them, would never have worked in Colour, but this blu ray, which was delivered quickly and safely, is an all time classic, and some brilliant realism in amongst the stiff upper lip.
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on 14 March 2017
Excellent movie very pleased to see this digitally restored - a must for any collection
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on 19 March 2017
Great DVD and good value for money
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on 26 May 2017
Another British claasic,great cast
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on 25 May 2017
Excellent. Thank you.
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on 5 March 2015
Old fashioned war movie, still wonderful to watch.
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on 2 March 2017
Brillaint movie. I love it.
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on 16 June 2011
Finally, one of the greatest ever British war films comes to the format it was destined for. A tense, thrilling war picture and a superbly written and acted character study with career-best performances from some of the finest actors Britain has ever produced, `Ice Cold in Alex' is a film that demands respectful treatment in the transfer to high definition, and Optimum have more than risen to the challenge, providing a simply stunning Blu Ray that doesn't so much push the boundaries of what older films can look like on Blu Ray as it does smash clean through them.

Put simply, this is one of the very finest black and white high definition transfers I have ever seen, with a level of detail and clarity that is simply staggering. Whilst the old standard DVD was very presentable, this new restoration blows it clean out of the water. Gilbert Taylor's razor-sharp cinematography has never and will never look better than it does here. Fine object detail is beyond criticism, with the numerous desert vistas providing a visual treat, and close-ups revealing every pore of skin and bead of sweat, enhancing the gritty feel of the film. Grading is exceptional, with a deep and rich greyscale and no evidence of clipping even in the brighter scenes. Digital tampering is kept to a minimum, with a natural film-like look present throughout. The use of modern `sprocketless' telecine transfer means that there is no evidence of telecine wobble, with the image remaining rock steady from the first frame to the last.

As with Optimum's release of `The Dam Busters', the original BBFC censor card has been retained, another lovely little touch that helps to set this release apart.

Sound is also good, presented as a 2 channel mono PCM track. Whilst the dynamic range is slightly limited by the inherent age of the source material, dialogue is clear throughout and effects such as gun blasts are deep and rich. Leighton Lucas' underrated and stirring score is particularly nice to hear in an uncompressed format. The track is a completely acceptable presentation for a film of this vintage.

An interview with Sylvia Syms, home movie footage by John Mills, a trailer and behind-the-scenes stills gallery round the disc out with the special features.

All in all, Optimum Releasing and the individuals responsible for the transfer itself should be congratulated for putting such extensive effort into the restoration of `Ice Cold in Alex', ensuring its survival in the best possible way for many years to come, and I would recommend this Blu Ray to fans of the film and newcomers alike without reservation. If you want to see the best of British film on the best of British Blu Ray, look no further!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 23 September 2013
Apart from a brief, delightful cameo from Liam Redmond as a lunatic British brigadier, and Diane Clare as the panicky & unfortunate Nurse Norton, this is a superb tale that revolves entirely around 4 characters. Cpt Anson, Nurse Murdoch, and MSM Pugh are determined to escape the advance of the Afrika Korps and reach Alexandria. Along the way, they pick up the S.African Cpt van der Poel. I shall say no more of the plot; if you've seen it before, you know, if you haven't I shan't spoil it.

John Mills plays, yet again, the flawed authority figure, as he so often did to such good effect. Anthony Quayle walks a perfect line between annoyingly boisterous and slightly sinister. Harry Andrews is his usual solid, stolid upright self, albeit given more screen time than he usually got (I can never decide whether this or The Hill is his best on-screen role). If Sylvia Syms has the least of the 4 main roles, she nevertheless provides perfect support to the others & the film would not work without her.

The strength of the film is that, even though the main plot twist is hinted at, if not revealed, relatively early on, the uncertainty & tension are sustained all the way to the end. These were the days when, whilst a string of star names was nice, it was the story; not star names or Special FX; that sustained a film. The story, of course, is not merely in the hands of the actors; John Lee Thompson must be given his share of the credit for his direction. Whilst I wouldn't go so far as to say this is the best film, or even the best war film, of the 50's, it is a perfect example of a top-notch British film of the 50's. Well worth adding to your shelf.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 18 September 2015
Well, I finally discovered this 1958 great classic and I LOVED it! After reading so many good feedback, I was wondering if it will be as good as expected - but I had no reasons to worry. IT IS THAT GOOD! Below, more of my impressions, with some limited SPOILERS.

Battle of Gazala, 1942. A British ambulance leaves Tobruk just before Afrika Korps cuts the city off. Five people are on board: Captain Anson (John Mills), a seriously shaken in battle officer from transport pool, his tough as nails chief NCO, mechanist sergeant major Tom Pugh (Harry Andrews), nurses Diana Murdoch (Sylvia Syms) and Denise Norton (Diane Clare) and an Afrikaner South African officer, Captain van der Poel (Anthony Quayle), who got separated from his unit and catches the ride with them to go to Alexandria. As Axis troops progress quickly, they have soon to leave the main road and cut through the most hostile regions of desert. This is how the film begins and the rest is the struggle of those five ill assorted people against the deadly dangeorus wilderness - and their own demons...

The film begins slowly and in fact during the first ten minutes I was actually wondering what everybody saw in it, but then it started catching momentum and I finally understood that everybody was right. It is a great film and a great story, with tragedy included but ultimately very uplifting.

The scenario is strong. The ending, always the most vulnerable point, is VERY good. There is a lot of tension and drama. Characters are well shown, with their strengths and vulnerabilities. The one point slightly less good was the romance element - I somehow found it a little bit artificial, but it ultimately is not all so important to the plot. Finally, it is worth mentioning, that as in case of quite a lot of very good war films, in this one there is virtually no fighting...

Actors were perfectly used. John Mills plays very well a tired, damaged man. Harry Andrews is excellent as the indestructible NCO. Sylvia Syms is impossibly cute and sexy - so is Diane Clare, who added to it the element of vulnerability. As for Anthony Quayle, well, he gives here his usual perfect performance - and it is also in this film that I finally realised how physically powerful this actor was!

I will keep this review short on purpose, to avoid giving away any clues about the twists and turns, which add a lot to this film and which I never saw coming. I like to watch war films and I saw many, many hundreds of them - and this one is amongst the best. I recommend it with all my heart. ENJOY!

Once you watched "Ice cold in Alex", if you are up for another terrible, heartbreaking trek through the desert roughly at the same moment of history, you should try "A taxi for Tobruk", a French 1960 film, with Lino Ventura, Charles Aznavour and Hardy Kruger. This is also a little jewel - albeit much more brutal. Enjoy that one too - if you dare...
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