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Doctor Who: The Dalek Invasion of Earth (Story 10)
Doctor Who The Dalek Invasion of Earth
Story 10
Actors: William Hartnell, William Russell, Jacqueline Hill, Carole Ann Ford, Bernard Kay
Director: Richard Martin
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Television, Cult Movies
NR     2003     2hr 27min

Studio: Warner Home Video Release Date: 09/06/2005 Run time: 147 minutes Rating: Nr


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Movie Details

Actors: William Hartnell, William Russell, Jacqueline Hill, Carole Ann Ford, Bernard Kay
Director: Richard Martin
Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Television, Cult Movies
Sub-Genres: Action & Adventure, Drama, Classics, Robots & Androids, Drama, Science Fiction, Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Studio: BBC Video / Warner Bros.
Format: DVD - Color - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 10/07/2003
Original Release Date: 09/29/1975
Theatrical Release Date: 09/29/1975
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 2hr 27min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaDVD Credits: 2
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 20
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Doctor Who in London
(5 out of 5 stars)

"There are those who consider Doctor Who to be at its very best when the errant Time Lord is visiting Earth and dealing with alien threats that are Earthbound. Doctor #3 himself, the late Jon Pertwee, often stated this story genre to be his favorite, and judging by the number of Earthbound stories from the show's lengthy history, many agreed. The latest two releases on DVD from the BBC archives are united in their "Earth invasion" theme, but both have taken an interesting and indeed unique slant on the alien invasion of London twist. The "Dalek invasion of Earth" was the last adventure made in the first season production block, way back in 1964, albeit held over and broadcast as the second story in season two. The adventure is significant for many reasons, mainly because it featured the departure of one of the original Tardis crew, and also because it was the first "sequel" to feature in the show, featuring the return of the enormously popular Daleks, created by Terry Nation. Set almost 200 years in the future, the adventure mainly takes place in central London, allowing for much location filming around familiar sights, which adds to the realism of the story. It was the first real use of extensive location filming in the show's history and was well worth the effort to take the show out of the studio and bring a more epic quality to the production. The closing sequence featuring the Doctor (as played by William Hartnell) bidding farewell to his granddaughter Susan, played by Carole Ann Ford, may also be one of the entire series most poignant scenes.All six of the original black and white episodes have been painstakingly restored to almost their original broadcast quality, with many enhancements to some of the laughable special effects added as an option. Potentially, it's the other bonus material that may prove the most interesting to fans and casual viewers alike. The commentary from the surviving cast (Carole Ann Ford and William Russell) together with the producer and director is first class. The on-screen captions also go a long way to fleshing out the background to the production. Almost the entire guest cast appear in newly shot interviews airing their reminiscences, plus there are all sorts of behind the scenes programme's, trailers and other goodies gathered onto a 2nd disc.The same is true of the companion release, "The Talons of Weng-Chiang." Made twelve years later, in glorious colour, this six part series took another twist on the Earth invader theme by taking the Doctor, this time played by Tom Baker, and his companion Leela back into Victorian London to deal with a sinister alien menace. For many, this story is often regarded as one of the greatest (if not THE greatest) story of the Doctor Who canon. And I'm not going to disagree. The production values alone would be enough to set it apart, but the wonderful script, incredible design and superlative acting by the entire cast adds a special magic to the show that few other Who adventures have ever matched. Like the earlier Dalek story, it also marks the end of an era, since this was the last adventure produced by Philip Hinchcliffe. Quite honestly - the show was never the same again!Again, there are all sorts of goodies available on a 2nd disc to accompany the restored six-part adventure. A documentary on the history of Doctor Who televised at the conclusion of the serial is just one bonus worth having; the commentary from the cast and crew is another. It's great to hear Louise Jameson (Leela) making her DVD debut, and it's a real shame Tom Baker himself did not take part. Both stories are excellent additions to the growing Doctor Who library, clearly demonstrating the changing production values and story making not only of this particular show, but also British TV drama in general. I'd highly recommend them and look forward to the next two releases in 2004."
J. Beaver | Lutz, FL USA | 05/30/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is one of those titles I looked forward to long before I knew of any definite plans to release it on DVD. I've always felt that, along with the Patrick Troughton story "The Seeds of Death", this is probably the best-photographed story of the entire 26 year history of the show; this is despite the fact that the cameraman's shadow can be seen drifting in and out of certain shots, but this can be forgiven since it is only the vastly improved DVD resolution that makes it visible at all, a problem that didn't exist when it was originally broadcast.
It was the first Doctor Who story to contain a significant amount of location footage, which enhanced its credibility; to see Daleks swarming around familiar monuments and landmarks leant the story authenticity, and the exterior lighting conditions throughout are flawless, and contribute greatly to creating a tense atmosphere of apprehensive foreboding.
I would also like to say that I have always been outspokenly opposed to the modification of old films and TV shows for any reason, so when I learned that some of the special effects had been replaced with newly-created CGI images, I was a little disturbed. But when I saw the results, I was floored: the new sequences are integrated so seamlessly and applied with such restraint that I have been forced to reconsider my objections. Furthermore, this DVD allows the viewer to choose between the original special effects sequence originally broadcast and the new updated CGI sequences.
This terrific feature, along with the high quality of the transfer, is an excellent example of the extreme care the BBC has taken in presenting these stories on DVD. They have taken an almost reverential approach in presenting this beloved British national icon to the rest of the world, and this is yet one more reason to buy this DVD."
Darrin Lanchbury | Lake Charles, Louisiana United States | 07/24/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The second story of the 1964 Season Two reunited the doctor with his old enemy the Daleks. Script Writer Terry Nation, never expecting his evil pepperpots to become a cult icon, had killed off his creations in his original story but was commissioned to bring them back for the next season. In this story, the TARDIS lands on the bank of the River Thames, London in the year 2164. The city is in ruins and the Doctor, Ian, Barbara and Susan are soon split up and discover to their horror that the Daleks have invaded the Earth, butchered most of the population and reduced the survivors to either slaves or "Robomen". As the Doctor teams up with members of the London Resistance Movement he uncovers a daring Dalek plan to mine out the Earth's core, replace it with a drive system and turn the Earth into a giant spacecraft which could be steered from planet to planet as the Daleks expand their empire! The only hope for the remaining human population depends on the Doctors plan to infiltrate the Dalek mining operations in Bedfordshire and prevent them launching a giant bomb into the Earth's core.Unlike the previous story, the Daleks are no longer restricted to moving on metal surfaces, but are free to roam the streets of London (and the rivers!) with their robotized zombies, exterminating whoever dares to resist them. Even though the BBC made this show on a miniscule budget, the original effects are not too bad and the sets create an atmosphere that makes this TV show far more enjoyable than its big-budget movie remake "The Dalek Invasion of Earth 2150AD".Technical notes: The Doctor Who Restoration Team performed a major cleanup and renovation job on the original BBC recording to produce a highly polished DVD release. Following the success of the new CGI shots inserted into The 4th Doctor story "The Ark in Space", new CGI shots were commissioned to replace the "plate on a string" Dalek saucer with a new state-of-the-art spacecraft and new matte paintings were made to show the ruined cityscape (the effects have to be manually switched on via the DVD menu or else the show will be played using the original shots). A commentary track was recorded by Carole Ann Ford (Susan), William Russell (Ian), Verity Lambert OBE (Producer) and Richard Martin (Director). Also included is a featurette on the new CGI effects, a look at how the Dalek voices were created with the actors who provided them, "Now and Then" featurette on the locations used for filming, "Future Memories" featurette with some of the actors from the show, studio floorplans, a "Blue Peter" (Children's TV show) special on making "Dalek Cakes", a rehersal film shot by Carol Ann Ford back in 1964, BBC trailers, pop-up production notes, photo gallery and more!!! Enjoy!!!Note for This show was transmitted in 1964 and NOT 1975 as stated in your title header."
It is Forbidden to Dump Bodies into the River ...
NoirDame, Vintage film/TV/radio wri | Houston, TX, USA | 11/29/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This creepy phrase, appearing on a large poster along the Thames, along with stunning location shoots all over London, sticks with you long after watching "The Dalek Invasion of Earth." Almost forty years later, this show retains its darkness, showing a slow degradation of hope and humanity among a scattered group of survivors. After the pepper pot-shaped Daleks take over Earth, turning most humans into worker slaves, and an unlucky few into lobomotized overseers, the Doctor and his friends (Susan, Barbara, and Ian) land on Earth and join the resistance. Location shoots are used to great effect, even if you're not a Londoner - from a disquieting scene of a berserk Roboman drowning himself in the Thames, to a road devoid of cars, where two women try to escape in an antique truck.Keeping in mind that Doctor Who, particularly during the 1960s, was first and foremost a children's TV series, it's surprising that no punches were pulled here. The character of Jenny, originally developed as a new companion for the Doctor, has seen so much death that it no longer fazes her; three other characters are traitorous, willing to sell out the Doctor and his friends for food or money. The DVD here has great features, well worth the price of admission. Using the "angle" control on your DVD player, you may switch between the CGI-animation and original animation of the Dalek ship and other special effects, even as you're viewing the episodes. There are several documentaries covering this animation, design and other aspects of the show. There's also the half hour radio drama, "Whatever Happened to Susan Foreman?" and detailed captions, or "info text" which can be watched by using the subtitle command. As with all incarnations of the Doctor, eventually the companions leave and change - much like the Doctor himself. This was the first show to feature the departure of a companion, in a touching scene with just the right note of sentiment. The loving speech the Doctor gives to his departing granddaughter, refusing to let her back into the TARDIS, is one of William Hartnell's great moments, sure to raise a sad pang in the heart of Whovians everywhere. However, while "Whatever Happened to Susan Foreman?", also featured on this DVD, is well-written and gets in a few French jokes, its farcical tone seems inappropriate. It would have you believe Susan became a snide, career-minded bureaucrat on Earth and that another Hartnell-era companion, one of the strongest-minded, went mad. The same Susan who declares "I love the twentieth century" in "An Unearthly Child" begins moaning about how boring the early 1960s were and longs to return to Gallifrey? Humor has always been a big part of Doctor Who's appeal, but no one would buy Jo Grant becoming Prime Minister, or Liz Shaw the afternoon host of a cooking show (now, vice-versa...). The silly premise is better suited to fan fiction. Most of all, the one-joke play neuters the terrific, emotional ending of this serial - as well as the interesting relationship developing between Susan and David, a resistance fighter.Instead, Doctor Who fans might be better off watching this as a chaser with "Genesis of the Daleks". Of course, both stories are a bit gloomy, so you might want to wait until a cheerful morning to watch."