Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Mars Invades The Earth The Night America Trembled / The Martian Eyes from Lights Out |
Actor: James Coburn,Ed Asner,Burgess Meredith Warren Beatty
A horrific and dramatic recreation of the night Mars invaded earth via the infamous Mercury Theater ""War Of The Worlds"" broadcast / A terrifying episode from the classic TV horror series ""Lights Out.""
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Superb Live Drama From Television's Early Days
Robert Huggins | Suburban Philadelphia, PA United States | 01/29/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This is a great example of live television from the 1950s and one of the few surviving kinescopes of the long running CBS dramatic anthology series "Studio One" (1948-58). "The Night America Trembled" is a recreation of the Orson Welles/Mercury Theatre radio adaptation of H.G. Wells' "War of the Worlds" broadcast of October 30, 1938. This early docudrama makes the most of its low budget thanks to a taut script, crisp direction and an incredible ensemble cast that included Ed Asner, Warren Beatty, James Coburn, Vincent Gardenia, Frank Marth, Warren Oates, Alexander Scourby and, in an uncredited role, John Astin. The production was hosted by famed CBS newsman Edward R. Murrow, who provides historical context for the show.
This release, by Alpha Video, is not the first time that "The Night America Trembled" has appeared on DVD. This episode has also appeared on the Canadian label VSC (Video Service Corp.) as part of their trio of "Studio One" DVD releases. Alpha's presentation is fairly solid for a live show from the 1950s. But those searching for Betty Furness and the original Westinghouse commercials will need the VSC version as this release eliminates almost all of the commercials, save for an opening reference to Westinghouse and a commercial near the end. Alpha rounds out this release with an episode of another early live anthology series "Lights Out," which had its origins in radio and focused its stories on the supernatural. Though rare to see, the episode "The Martian Eyes" is one of the murkiest looking television episodes that I've ever seen committed to DVD, and the script simply doesn't hold one's interest in the way that "The Night America Trembled" does. However, it's great to see Burgess Meredith in an early television role, along with veteran J. Pat O'Malley.
This DVD release will likely be of interest to those who appreciate vintage, live television. "Studio One" fans are better served by the releases from VSC, but if you're looking just for "The Night America Trembled," this release will do just fine. I'm giving **** for "The Night America Trembled" and ** for "The Martian Eyes."
Well Worth Watching
Richard Masloski | New Windsor, New York USA | 05/11/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"For some bizarre reason, in this 1957 docu-drama recreation of the Orson Welles' "Panic Broadcast" from 1938, the name Orson Welles is NEVER mentioned! Why this is so, I have no idea. The Mercury Theatre is mentioned many times...but not a whisper of Welles. Alexander Scourby plays the unnamed Boy Wonder, however. This is a fun show to watch. Most anything from the early days of television is fun to watch - and informative as to how things were done in the Golden Age. And how many future famous faces pop up in one less-than-an-hour show: James Coburn, Warren Beatty, Warren Oates, Ed Asner, John Astin. Anyway, this Edward R. Murrow hosted show does manage to convey some sense of what it must have been like to have been listening to the radio that fateful night of October 30, 1938. Some of the live editing is damn brilliant; the script is well-paced, accurate and the acting is top-shelf.
Also on the disc is a really creepy (even though perhaps predictable) episode of "Lights Out" entitled "The Martian Eyes" and stars Burgess Meredith as a decidedly fey, quite gay (despite talk of a wife) and creepy character. The ending is downright weird and unsettling!!! The transfer - while nowhere as sharp as the main event - is still viewable and not as murky as mentioned elsewhere.
Get the disc - and save it for the coming Halloween season, if you can wait that long!"