Friday, April 2, 2010

Peter Cushing vs The Daleks

I've never-never-never seen anything to do with Dr Who. Never. I worked together with Andrew Herbert who worked with the lightning on Tom Bakers Dr Who-series though, but that's the closest I got. So I'm gonna cheat a little bit, and have just watched Dr Who and the Daleks + Daleks' Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D. I understand it's a bit different from the TV-show, but what the... I don't care THAT much! But I will try to, because sometime I wills start watching the show too!

The silliest part is the first, Dr Who and the Daleks, and the story is also the weakest. Dr Who (Peter Cushing), his grandchild and some other female relative (I think...) + her boyfriend travels in time and arrives at an unknown planet where the Daleks rule. The Daleks look like R2-D2 in puberty, has a loud screaming voice and are more or less harmless. Especially if you use stairs. They want to exterminate (actually, they want to exterminate EVERYTHING ALL THE TIME!) a people consisting of what gay men looked like in sixties movies and of course Dr Who and his friends helps them to defeat those smoke-squirting trash cans.

No, I'm not negative to this movie. It's a lovely little matinée with Peter Cushing obviously enjoying himself tremendously, which I can understand after all the dark parts he's done before and after. Roy Castle is the comic relief and don't do that well, but he's still a good actor - but the comedy seem a bit to forced to be really funny. The look of the movie is cheap, but fun. The sets are plywood all the way and the set design isn't that good, but at least very colorful.

It's worth watching just for Cushing, but I just think it's a bit to weak to make any hoopla about.

But now comes the reason why it's good with sequels, because Daleks' Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D. - who came the year after - is a damn fine little sci-fi movie which is much more serious and darker than the first one. It still has comedy, but Bernard Cribbins is funny and makes the slapstick work, especially the scene where he's forced to pretend to be one of the human slaves of the Daleks. And yes, the soldier-slaves makes it so much better. Now I can understand how the Daleks can EX-TER-MI-NATE everybody and everyone, because they brainwash people do do their dirty work! The Daleks don't speak so god damn slow this time either, which only is good.

Invasion Earth is filled with cool sets and locations. The destroyed London is atmospheric and gritty, the UFO's are cool and big, the mining-area looks good and all these places is also filled with a lot of impressive action and adventure. There's some cool stunts, a lot of explosions and stuff getting destroyed. It reminded me of Toho sometimes. The characters they meet are darker and more egoistic, and therefore more realistic.

Neither of these movies are masterpieces, but Daleks' Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D. is with out a doubt the best one and clearly superior in every way compared with the first one.

"Hello sailor! So, what do a handsome man like you doing in a seedy little London gay-club like this? Do you need a joint?"


dfordoom said...

The Doctor Who movies are very very poor compared to the TV series.

CiNEZiLLA said...

The one you want to check out is Genesis of the Daleks with Tom Baker. Fucking brilliant! The Doctor's moral dilemma kinda comes to a peak here.


Paul Cooke aka Buckaroobanzai said...

Bernard Cribbins is also featured a lot in the last couple of seasons of the David Tennant Dr. Who run. These sort of connections over the duration of a long standing actor such as Cribbins always seem to throw something like this up. He battles against the Daleks in the Sixties & then again in the two thousands.
The new Dr. Who Matt Smith starts his rein on UK TV Saturday 3rd April 2010 & from the advance reels the BBC have been showing recently the episodes look pretty darned snazzy. Looking forward to this next chapter. Tennant was superb but let's give the new guy a chance as it looks very promising with what has been shown so far.

Anonymous said...

I would say that both the tv series and movies are weak. Only thing that is good is the music. Childish script and terrible effects.

Mark Hodgson said...

I saw this when it came out - there was a huge Dalek craze going on and Doctor Who was really intended for younger viewers - hence the way the film is aimed. Obviously, Peter Cushing knew how to act for adults if he was asked.

One early showing of NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD was on a double-bill with this film - before the MPAA ratings system kicked in!