Daleks Invasion Earth 2150 A.D. Movie Review

While writing this post, I stumbled upon this! A nugget of treasure! Dr. Who and the Daleks 1966! It is a full-length feature film showing how and when the Daleks came to earth and took over. Dr. Who is performed by Peter Crushing! Yes, it’s bad Science Fiction TV. And yes, this is a hobby of mine! I should talk about it sometime. Lon Chaney, Ed Wood, Mystery Science Theater 3,000… Poorly dubbed martial art films from the 60’s. I can sit through anything! I credit my tolerance to MST 3000. But that is for another post.

I just rented these little  nuggets and will be providing a full movie review on both of them later! OMG! Can not wait! – From previous Post Dr. Who? Dr, Who!

 

Daleks Invasion Earth 2150 A.D.

*sigh* Yes, I wrote this post on 10 January 2016. Yes, it is 22 January 2016 and I am only now getting around to it. For good reason.

I wanted to love this movie. I walked in with a smile on my face, squealing and ready… What I got was less than disappointing. I have a system with my reviews and I will go through it with this one. Just… give me a moment to collect my drooped shoulders from the floor.

 

“Tell Me Nothing!” Review

*sigh* Don’t watch it. Just watch the episodes series. Begin with this one.

The movie is only a recap on the series. Only… done poorly. Here’s the link. Just watch the series. My final movie rating was a 2. Barely. Don’t bother. If you’re a Whovian, you’ll be annoyed.

 

“Tell Me Everything” Review

I break my reviews down, addressing each movie department in turn. Now… before I begin this, I will have you know my favorite film is Ben Hur. My favorite American actor is Charleton Heston. My favorite director is Alfred Hitchcock followed closely by Cecil B. Demille. My favorite actress is Audrey Hepburn. My favorite English Actor is Rex Harrison. The first thing I ever bought myself with my first paycheck was the silent movie The Phantom of the Opera with Lon Chaney. I adore the Man of A Thousand Faces. I once sat through the original science fiction, Little Shop of Horrors from 1960. I am no stranger to old television. After sitting through three Ed Wood films, The Night of the Living Dead, Mystery Science Theater, and many Bruce Campbell films… I can proudly say I am no stranger to bad television. I know what to expect in a film made in the 1960’s. I can look past the technological limitations of the era. Let it be known that my review will not be compared at all to the same standards as Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings or Stan Lee’s Marvel Movies.

And so… we begin.

 

Plot/Script

Movie

This was the greatest disappointing factor for me. I had expected, hoped, and planned to see additional yummy Doctor and Dalek conundrums. Instead… sadly… *sigh* All I got was a recap of the episode arch I was already watching. So much so, that within the first 5 minutes, my husband and  I stopped the movie so we could finish the episode series arc “Lest there be spoilers.” And boy were there. No. There were no spoilers. It WAS the exact same plot as the series written by Terry Nation. Because of this, I will be doing a side by side comparison of the episodes and the movie.

Television Series

So… Episode plot? OMG! IT WAS GREAT! This was one arc that kept me on my toes! I was hopping and could not imagine what problem would come next! I did have issues with one character, which I will get into in a moment under characters. This character drops the rating down to a 4 because his actions affect the plot that much, and left me annoyed and irritated for his sheer stupidity. I gnawed my nails down to the quick with this arc and strongly recommend it to everyone Energetic. Engaging. Exciting. Phenomenal.

Wait! Angela! How can you give the movie a 1 rating and the series a 4 when it’s the same plot? Because, fellow Whovian, this was all about expectations. The movie was supposed (in my opinion) bring something new to the table, not “remake” something that had nothing wrong with it. I am very unforgiving of remakes. You have no idea how ruthless I am with remakes. If you are going to remake something you had better bring something new to the table. In all the decades of movie remakes, only two I can accept. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory… because they modeled it much closer to the book therefore making it more original than the first… and The Planet of the Apes… And I am a die-hard Charleton Heston fan! You don’t remake The Planet of the Apes! I do not acknowledge that abomination. But Andy Sertkis and John Lithgow’s partnership in The Rise of the Planet of the Apes… Gorgeous that brought something new to the story without dismissing the 1968 classic. Simply beautiful story.

Movie Rating: #1

Series Rating: #4

Character Portrayals/Casting

Movie

First, I will discuss Dortmun portrayed by Alan Judd. Dortmum is a wheel chair ridden “scientist” who creates bombs to defeat the Daleks. Not only do his bombs not work, but he is adamant they will. I found the bombs and explosions credible (for their day), but was irritated at Dortmum who came off as being old, stubborn, and simply no business whatsoever in all of this. He should be sitting off to the side with the women and children cowering while the real leaders take charge. And they had multiple candidates for “Real leaders.” So why Dortmum? I could have, kind of, believed the role if Dortmum didn’t come off as a senile idiot who could tell a star from a planet! Let alone make bombs. His decision to “roll on out” to meet the Daleks was just… WTF? It wasn’t to create a diversion (or was it?). The character did so much to ruin my Dr. Who experience. Who was too foolish to believe and the character could have worked if he was a meddling nobody in the corner. But a leader? Nope! Not buying it.

They cast Peter Crushing to play the role as The Doctor. Only, in the movie, the Doctor has a name. His name… is Doctor Who. Yep! More on this under “inaccuracies.” Now I am biased. I love William Hartnell. So when I saw that they hired Peter Crushing, I was angry. William Hartnell owned that role and he mastered it. Peter Crushing is a great actor who was poorly casted in a role not meant for him. Casting Peter Crushing as the quirky, but fun and adorable nerd Doctor was like casting James Bond for the role. No! A suave playboy lady-killer is not the Doctor! For this, the movie gets a 1 on casting. The nerds own this role! Back off Hollywood!

Television Series

I have a whole “soapbox” reserved just for William Hartnell when the second Doctor is introduced. Let’s just say, William Hartnell gets a 5 rating. Check back in a week for the soapbox that tells you why.

Movie Rating: #1

Series Rating: #5

Music

Movie

Did I ever tell you what I wanted to be growing up? I mean really wanted to be? From 12 years of age to 22, I trained in music composition. It was my dream to be a movie composer like James Horner. I used to play a wicked piano concert level and composed many a ballads before getting into orchestration. I know my sh**. I know my way around a movie score. So when it comes to this topic, I am ruthless.

Here’s some info for you. Miklós Rózsa is the composer of Ben Hur. Gorgeous music (I told you. I love Ben Hur… A lot). Miklós Rózsa taught John Williams. I didn’t believe it until I heard some neo-classical compositions by Rózsa. In short… it is the Jaws theme… and the Imperial March… and a few others you will recognize. Listen to Miklós Rózsa. It’s amazing how much he “inspired” John Williams. My point?

I value music in movies. Music shouldn’t be noticed by the viewer, or should be so emotional to enhance your viewing experience. The score for Daleks Invasion Earth 2150 A.D.? Ghastly! Simply ghastly! In the 1960’s something akin to “Beach Surfer” music was very popular. I don’t know why… it just was. And if you ever watch movies from the 1960’s you’ll find it everywhere. I don’t know why… it just was. Daleks Invasion Earth 2150 A.D. makes no exception. Now, I love the movie That Darn Cat (1965) with Dean Jones. I am familiar with “Beach Surfer” music. But there is a time and a place.

When the Doctor and Barbara were sneaking about and I had to listen to upbeat, “Beach Surfer” music borderline big band jazz, I wanted to wrap the symbols around the composer’s throat. WTF? Imagine hearing the music for a huge battle scene played during a romantic scene. Now imagine 90 minutes of that. The music is what made this movie unbearable to sit through. Just the music. If the music hadn’t been there at all, the movie would have received a higher rating.

Television Series

I am so engrossed in Doctor Who, that I have not yet noticed the music at all. I think… when I really put my mind to it… it is the classic “Dun dun!” you hear in all the right places when shocking news is revealed. And an ominous flute depicts the tippy-toe moments beautiful so that I whisper, “Be very quiet. We’re hunting Daleks.” I’ll go easy on this rating.

Movie Rating: #1

Series Rating: #4

Special Effects

Movie

DalekNow here is where the movie trumps the series. And I just has to say… Completely off topic… sort of… nothing gives me greater joy than seeing the “thing” on the Daleks go “flashy flashy flashy” as their…. appendage does its weird thing. It just cracks me up. We have sound affects for it now. “Thoop thoop thoop” we say. Heheheheeee….

Okay! So aside from Peter Crushing, this is where the movie dumped its funding. Yes, it was in technicolor (personally, I don’t care). Yes, the Daleks didn’t look like they were going to fall apart. Yes, all the booms were big and fiery and explode-y. And yes, this was all at the expense of the music department and casting department. Nevertheless, this was an easy 5.

Television Series

Now here… here is where I smile. When I decided to watch this Dr. Who, one deciding factor was how “bad” it was… really. I have seen Lost in Space. The original episodes and as well as the movie with Matt LeBlanc. I am not talking about the movie with Matt LeBlanc. I did rather enjoy it when I was a child. No. I am talking about the original series. Oh. My Odinn. Nothing… not even Ed Wood… comes close to being that bad. I mean… wow. That’s bad. The plot, the sets, the acting, the scripts. Wow. Just wow. So when someone tells me, “this is bad” I then ask, “Is it Lost in Space bad?” If it isn’t I then answer, “Oh, then it can’t be too bad.

Let’s talk Star Trek for a moment. The OS. The sets and costumes were so bad from OS, that I deemed the show, “Pajama Men In Space.” They looked like they were wearing their jammies! And don’t get me started about William Shatner. Nevertheless, the plot from OS was gorgeous and that is why we love OS.

So this brings me to Doctor Who. The special effects for Dr. Who are sooo much better than Star Trek, so long as the Daleks don’t use their “thoop thoop” things. Now, if I can sit through Pajama Men In Space where, at times, the filming was as bad as Ed Wood—I’m referring to the beard that fell out, grew back, vanished, then returned all in one episode! You know the one, Trekkies! We love it anyway and forgive them with a smile.—then I can sit through Classic Dr. Who.

That being said… for its day, Dr. Who was phenomenal! Sitting through the Zarbi arc was agonizingly painful. They completely ignored the basics in zoology for that episode. For a limited budget, they did an excellent job! On occasion, a Dalek’s costume catches on a door frame. But I’ve only caught that once in two seasons.

Movie Rating: #5

Series Rating: #3

Inaccuracies

So here is my real beef with the film. Two inaccuracies that just grate on me. And one thing that just… irked me. This will be short and sweet.

The TARDIS has no lock so anyone can just walk in… and does.

The Doctor introduces himself as “My name is Doctor Who.” No it isn’t! I shouted back at Peter Crushing.

Ian, for casting reasons, was completely removed from the plot, and they had to bring in another actor to fill the role of “David” who just strolled right into the TARDIS to make a call. The actor playing David did an excellent job and I’m thrilled the writers decided to write in a new character rather than trying to “trick” us by hanging the guy upside down or something so we think its Ian, when it isn’t.

I won’t rate in inaccuracies, but I will give you a final ratings based on averages:

Final Rating

Movie Rating: Solid 2

Series Rating: Solid 4

There you have it. Watch the series. Skip the movie.

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About the Author: Angela