Richard Todd






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The Dam Busters
B L U  R A Y

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All titles on these pages are official releases released in UK & Europe unless stated.


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Classic 2nd World War Drama

1955, 136 MINS, BW, UK

Director: Michael Anderson

Writers: Paul Brickhill (book), Wing Commander Guy Gibson (book)
Release Date: 24 May 1955 (UK)


CAST:

Michael Redgrave ... Doctor B. N. Wallis, C.B.E., F.R.S.
Ursula Jeans ... Mrs. Wallis
Charles Carson ... Doctor
Stanley Van Beers ... Sir David Pye, C.B., F.R.S.
Colin Tapley ... Doctor W.H. Glanville, C.B., C.B.E.
Frederick Leister ... Committee Member
Eric Messiter ... Committee Member
Laidman Browne ... Committee Member
Raymond Huntley ... Official, National Physical Laboratory
Hugh Manning ... Official, Ministry of Aircraft Production
Patrick Barr ... Captain Joseph 'Mutt' Summers, C.B.E.
Edwin Styles ... Observer at trials
Hugh Moxey ... Observer at trials
Anthony Shaw ... R.A.F. Officer at trials
Basil Sydney ... Air Chief Marshal Sir Arthur Harris G.C.B., O.B.E., A.F.C.
Ernest Clark ... Air Vice-Marshal The Hon. Ralph Cochrane G.B.E., K.C.B., A.F.C.
Derek Farr ... Group Captain J.N.H. Whitworth, D.S.O., D.F.C.
Laurence Naismith ... Farmer
Harold Siddons ... Group Signals Officer
Frank Phillips ... B.B.C. Announcer
Richard Todd ... Wing Commander Guy Gibson, V.C., D.S.O., D.F.C.
Brewster Mason ... Flt/Lt. R.D. Trevor-Roper, D.F.C., D.F.M.
Anthony Doonan ... Flt/Lt. R.E.G. Hutchison, D.F.C.
Nigel Stock ... Flying/Off. F.M. Spafford, D.F.C., D.F.M.
Brian Nissen ... Flt/Lt. A.T. Taerum, D.F.C.
Robert Shaw ... Flt/Sgt. J. Pulford, D.F.M.
Peter Assinder ... Plt/Off. G.A. Deering, D.F.C.
Richard Leech ... Squadron Leader H.M. Young, D.F.C.
Richard Thorp ... Squadron Leader H.E. Maudslay, D.F.C.
John Fraser ... Flight Lieutenant J.V. Hopgood, D.F.C.
David Morrell ... Flight Lieutenant W. Astell, D.F.C.
Bill Kerr ... Flight Lieutenant H.B. Martin, D.S.O., D.F.C., A.F.C.
George Baker ... Flight Lieutenant D.J.H. Maltby, D.S.O., D.F.C.
Ronald Wilson ... Flight Lieutenant D.J. Shannon, D.S.O., D.F.C.
Denys Graham ... Flying Officer L.G. Knight, D.S.O.
Basil Appleby ... Flight Lieutenant R.C. Hay, D.F.C.
Tim Turner ... Flight Lieutenant J.F. Leggo, D.F.C.
Ewen Solon ... Flight Sergeant G.E. Powell
Harold Goodwin ... Wing Comdr. Gibson's Batman

British War Dvds

(Associated British Picture Corporation (ABPC))


This is the story of the successful raid on the Ruhr dams, when a small fleet of British bombers, using a new type of explosive, successfully breached the water supplies, which fed the Ruhr factories and caused desolation and havoc to the German war machine (and that is the line the British makers of this classic movie have fed us since its release but I'll go into that later).

For more than 90 minutes, the film is devoted to the planning and preparation, and very absorbing material this proves to be. The reconstruction of the raid is done with graphic realism and though the film was Oscar nominated for special effects the actual pounding of the dams now looks distinctly naff. Think of your bath tub with the lights off and a couple of torches spotlighting a wall you've made in the water from something left over from your Blue Peter days. Now make a ripple, smash the dams and hey presto, you will here the words: "Best Oscar Nomination for Special Effects are: ..."

But that is a minor quibble and something I have no doubt overstated. The production is a personal triumph for its director, Michael Anderson. While Michael Redgave puts a pinch too much bumbling boffin into his Barnes Wallis (come on, there is no way Wallis was that much of a boffin, was he?? He might of well have had BOFFIN tattooed onto his forehead!), Richard Todd was never better as Wing Commander Guy Gibson. He makes Gibson likeable which is quite a feat when by all accounts Ginson was quite an aloof and unpleasant character.

The greatest feat of the movie is that thanks to its potent blend of scientific suspense and aerial action accompanied by that stirring soundtrack, it has convinced generations of movie-watchers that the bouncing bomb raid on the dams of the Ruhr valley was a major turning point in the war rather than a risky venture that the brass hats considered something of a sideshow.

Was the actual raid actually worth it considering the high loss of life for the British airmen? It is something touched upon at the end of the movie. Propaganda wise it was a success but in reality it did little damage to the German war machine.

But if you leave these thoughts to one side, on sheer entertainment value this film is in a league of its own.


Buy Blu-ray from this Site (Shipped from UK)


Official Blurb:

A much-loved British classic, Michael Anderson's 1954 drama captures the tension and bravery of an audacious raid on the centre of Nazi Germany's industrial complex, and the quintessentially English combination of inventiveness and dogged determination.

Split into two distinct sections, the film deals first with the fraught, but ultimately successful development of a new weapon by Dr. Barnes N. Wallis (Michael Redgrave). The second and pacier section deals with the mission itself during the British raid on the Ruhr Dams, and its associated costs for the enemy and for the British airmen.

Adapted by R.C. Sheriff from Paul Brickhill's book Enemy Coast Ahead and featuring superlative special effects photography by Gilbert Taylor (to say nothing of Eric Coates' stirring theme tune), The Dam Busters was Britain's biggest box-office success of 1955. Shot in black and white to allow the integration of original footage of the bomb trails, the film boasts a 'gritty', documentary-style reality.


Trivia:

Ages of the stars at the time of the making of the film: Richard Todd, 35; Michael Redgrave, 46; John Fraser, 23; Robert Shaw, 27.

Filming locations included:

    Associated British Elstree Studios, Shenley Road, Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, England, UK

    National Physical Laboratory, Teddington, Middlesex, UK

    Derwent Reservoir, Peak District National Park, Derbyshire, England, UK

    Howden Reservoir, Peak District National Park, Derbyshire, England, UK

    Ladybower Reservoir, Peak District National Park, Derbyshire, England, UK
    (aerial shots)

    RAF Hemswell, Lincolnshire, England, UK
    (exteriors)


5 STARS OUT OF 5


The Dam Busters Specia Anniversary Edition Blu-ray
Richard Todd

Blu ray [2010]

Director: Michael Anderson
Actors: Richard Todd, Michael Redgrave, Ursula Jeans, Basil Sydney, Patrick Barr
Format: Anamorphic, Black & White, PAL, Widescreen
Language: English
Subtitles: English
Region: Region B/2
Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
Number of Discs: 1
Classification: U
Studio: Studiocanal
Blu Ray Release Date: 14 Jun. 2010
Run Time: 123 minutes


Blu-ray Features:

'Dambusters: 617 Squadron Remember'. Exclusive new documentary narrated by Max Arthur.


CONDITION: new.





Price: 10.00 (UK Sterling) (UK Postage Inclusive)

Dec. 16: back in stock. 'New'.

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