DVD

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Anton van Beek  |  Oct 01, 2012  |  0 comments

Doctor Who: Revisitations 1 is the first of three planned boxsets collecting together a trio of classic Doctor Who stories that have already been released on DVD in the past, but given new and improved transfers, plus a wealth of additional bonus material.

Anton van Beek  |  Apr 26, 2012  |  0 comments

It’s a good time to be a fan of classic Doctor Who right now. Not only did we have the news about the rediscovery of two missing episodes at the end of last year, but the DVD range is also getting closer to the end, with fewer than 15 complete serials still awaiting release at the time of writing.

Anton van Beek  |  Mar 24, 2013  |  0 comments

Yet another previously released Doctor Who benefits from a second DVD outing – including improved picture quality and even more bonus features. However, the major selling point for this two-disc set is the inclusion of a 64-minute reconstruction of the missing 1965 serial Galaxy 4, the centrepiece of which is a pristine restoration of the recently rediscovered third episode (pictured). It's still a dreadful story, but the chance to finally see how bad it was for yourself makes this set a must-own for fans.

Anton van Beek  |  Aug 01, 2013  |  0 comments

Now here's a fitting way of celebrating Doctor Who's 50th anniversary. Not only is The Mind of Evil the last John Pertwee story to be released on DVD –excluding any future ‘Revisitations’ of previous Third Doctor DVDs - but this release is also the first time that the six episodes have been seen in colour in decades (click here for how and why). The recolourisation is generally impressive – especially Stuart Humphryes' work on episode one – although the quality varies from episode to episode. As we’ve come to expect from the Doctor Who DVD range, the non-anamorphic 1.33:1 transfer is technically excellent, as is the Dolby Digital dual-mono soundtrack.

Anton van Beek  |  Jan 30, 2014  |  0 comments

Unless another cache of missing episodes turns up we're now in the home stretch of classic Doctor Who DVDs. This Patrick Troughton four-parter from 1967 marked the second appearance of the Cybermen and helped cement the 'base under siege' style of production. The two surviving episodes have been lovingly restored for this DVD and joined by two gorgeous new animated reconstructions of the missing episodes. The typically superb collection of extras include commentaries, info-text on the two surviving episodes, a half-hour Making of… doc and a photo gallery.

Anton van Beek  |  Feb 05, 2013  |  0 comments

Gallows humours abounds in this six-part 1964 serial set during the French Revolution that marked the end of the show's first series. Sadly, only four of the episodes still exist, but for this DVD release, the two missing episodes have been recreated using the surviving soundtracks and some stylish (if rather rapidly edited) animation. Unsurprisingly, the archival 1.33:1 video looks pretty rough, but the audio for all six episodes is excellently rendered. The usual plethora of extras is supplemented by a gallery of animation character models and a closer look at the animated sets.

Anton van Beek  |  Jan 23, 2012  |  0 comments

My history with this particular classic serial dates back to my childhood in the late '70s and a Doctor Who card game I used to own. In amongst the hand-drawn pictures of such popular characters from the series as Davros, the Cybermen, Annie Oakley and Thor (seriously, half of the set was made up of spurious historical and mythological figures) was one that meant absolutely nothing to me - the Sensorites.

Anton van Beek  |  Apr 26, 2013  |  0 comments

Director David DeCoteau throws together elements from Porky’s, Meatballs 2 and Weird Science with this uneven sex comedy about a nerdy freshman (Billy Jacoby) who is transformed into a babe magnet after being injected with ‘alien vitamins’ by mysterious new biology teacher Ms Zenobia (Judy Landers). The film’s first act - all pratfalls and comedy sound effects – feels more like a sit-com than a film - but things do get a little bit more interesting when the sci-fi elements start to kick in and it all ends up with a very silly shoot-out in a hideous New Wave nightclub.

Anton van Beek  |  Jan 25, 2013  |  0 comments

Is there really such a thing as the 'Untold Story of 007'? Possibly, but you're unlikely to find it in Stevan Riley's officially-sanctioned documentary looking back at the history of the Bond movie franchise and its stewardship under Albert 'Cubby' Broccoli and Harry Saltzman. However, this doesn't mean that you should simply write off Everything or Nothing as little more than a hagiography produced to cash-in on the franchise's 50th anniversary.

Anton van Beek  |  May 14, 2011  |  0 comments

Family Guy's tenth season provides another 15 episodes of animated chaos featuring the misadventures of the Peter Griffin and his family. Highlights this time around include abortion-themed Partial Terms of Endearment (which was initially banned from broadcast in the US and ended up making its worldwide TV debut on BBC Three last June), the 150th episode special Brian & Stewie (a smart two-hander featuring the popular dog and baby pairing trapped in a bank vault) and the surprisingly dramatic 55min murder-mystery special And Then There Were Fewer (which actually kills off some of the supporting cast). Like always, the show's mix of gross-out gags, gross stupidity, desire to offend and pop culture spoofs make it an acquired taste - but if you've stuck with the show this far then you won't be disappointed.

Anton van Beek  |  Mar 20, 2013  |  0 comments

We sometimes wonder how Father Ted managed to get commissioned. First up, the series was the brainchild of Graham Linehan and Arthur Mathews, whose only previous sitcom experience was creating the appalling (and now largely forgotten) Alexi Sayle vehicle Paris. Then there's the subject matter itself – the somewhat unappealing prospect of spending time with a trio of Catholic priests on a tiny island off the west coast of Ireland. Even the cast was mainly unknown, with some having next to no acting experience.

Anton van Beek  |  Oct 31, 2012  |  0 comments

Once upon a time the BBC used to delight in terrifying Christmas audiences with adaptations of classic ghost stories – several based on the work of M.R. James. These two volumes celebrate this with four James adaptations. The first houses 1968 and 2010 takes on Whistle and I’ll Come to You, while the second offers up 1971’s The Stalls of Barchester and 1972’s A Warning to the Curious – each a masterpiece of small-screen supernatural scares.

Anton van Beek  |  Oct 31, 2009  |  0 comments

Thanks to the likes of Haute Tension (aka Switchblade Romance), Frontiere(s) and Martyrs, the past few years have seen a major resurgence in French horror cinema. Proving particularly adept at pushing the boundaries of taste, this new wave of French horror eschews the safe scares of its Americanised brethren in favour of more challenging fodder. And the latest of these films to make it to UK shores is the writer-director Alexandre Bustillo and co-director Julien Maury's visceral 2007 shocker A l'interieur (Inside).

Anton van Beek  |  Jun 02, 2013  |  0 comments

'It gets dark. It gets really, really dark,' is how HCC favourite Walton Goggins sums up this third season of the hit cop show. And while it doesn't quite measure up to the previous season, Justified remains one of the most unpredictable and distinctive TV series currently on the air. While Sony keeps UK fans hanging on for a Blu-ray release, this three-disc DVD is a reasonable alternative due to its cleanly rendered anamorphic 1.78:1 transfers and balanced Dolby Digital 5.1 mix. Extras include nine episode commentaries and two behind-the-scenes featurettes.

Anton van Beek  |  Jul 24, 2008  |  0 comments

Loch Ness, 1976. After finding a massive (not to mention suspiciously light) egg at the bottom of the famous Loch, an American scientist and his two colleagues are devoured by an angry Nessie. The only survivor is the scientist’s young son, James, who hid under an upturned boat.

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