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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

Directed by Freddie Francis
UK 1967

 

From Freddie Francis, the legendary director of The Evil of Frankenstein, Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors, The Skull, The Psychopath, The Deadly Bees and Tales That Witness Madness, and Milton Subotsky, the acclaimed screenwriter of Dr. Who and the Daleks, I, Monster, Tales from the Crypt, The Vault of Horror and At the Earth’s Core, comes this fast-paced sci-fi thriller in the tradition of Invasion of the Body Snatchers! When meteorites crash-land in the perfect formation of the letter V, the Ministry of Extraterrestrial Life on Other Planets (MELOP) springs into action! Britain’s leading professor on the subject is in charge of finding out what’s going on before it’s too late. Fortunately, he’s got a metal plate in his head which prevents the aliens from taking over his mind and forcing him into slave labor on the moon! They Came from Beyond Space is an out-of-this-world, out-of-your-mind sci-fi sensation!

***

The film is based on the novel The Gods Hate Kansas by Joseph Millard, and the farm setting transported to rural Cornwall, England. Here a farming couple witnesses a strange sight: a group of nine glowing meteorites falling in a distinct V formation directly in front of them. At the (conveniently) nearby British Ministry of Space Research, Dr. Curtis Temple (Robert Hutton) is under doctor's orders to avoid strenuous activity due to head injuries sustained in a recent car crash. Instead, Temple's girlfriend and fellow scientist Lee Mason (Jennifer Jayne) heads a team to investigate. When a team member strikes one of the meteorites with a chisel, it emits a glow and a piercing sound that briefly immobilizes those nearby. The rocks contain an alien presence, which is able to take over their human host; as Alien/Lee says in a detached voice, "There is a brief moment of struggle before the connection is made, but it passes almost immediately. Control of musculature and vocal chords awkward, but adequate. You may choose your subjects and connect."

Excerpt from TCM located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: May 1967

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Review: Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

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Distribution Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 1:25:22.158        
Video

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 28,453,364,907 bytes

Feature: 26,746,398,720 bytes

Video Bitrate: 37.91 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

DTS-HD Master Audio English 1554 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1554 kbps / 16-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 16-bit)
Commentary:

Dolby Digital Audio English 192 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 192 kbps

Subtitles English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Kino

 

1.85:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 28,453,364,907 bytes

Feature: 26,746,398,720 bytes

Video Bitrate: 37.91 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

• NEW Audio Commentary by Film Historian David Del Valle and Filmmaker David DeCoteau
• Theatrical Trailer (1:47 in SD)


Blu-ray Release Date:
June 2nd, 2020
Standard Blu-ray Case

Chapters 9

 

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

ADDITION: Kino Blu-ray (June 2020): Kino have transferred Freddie Francis's They Came from Beyond Space to Blu-ray. It is cited as being from a "Brand New 4K Master". They are plenty of speckles but it looks very consistent with some depth in the colors. It's quite a pleasing image in 1080P and I can't expect this film would look any superior.

On their Blu-ray, Kino use a DTS-HD Master dual-mono track (16-bit) in the original English language. It has some equally funky audio effects for sci-fi-related paralyzer-gunfire etc. and a 60's Pop-like score by James Stevens (The Weapon), sounding a bit deeper with more consistent dialogue. Kino offer optional English subtitles on their Region 'A' Blu-ray.

The Kino Blu-ray offers a new commentary by Film Historian David Del Valle and Filmmaker David DeCoteau. Del Valle informs us that Freddie Francis was not particularly keen on They Came from Beyond Space and actually was not big on science-fiction in general. DeCoteau blames the script for his poor reception of it. Del Valle take the lead discussing Amicus and Tigon Studios - competitors trying to emulate Hammer Studio's genre successes. There is some very relevant stuff here - a lot of Francis, Zia Mohyeddin and both commentators love Michael Gough (playing 'Master of the Moon' in They Came from Beyond Space.) I liked their comments as it gave me a smidgeon more appreciation for the film. There is also an SD theatrical trailer.  

I agree with Del Valle that They Came from Beyond Space evokes The Earth Dies Screaming to some degree or rather I hoped it was at that level (personally I'm a fan of The Earth Dies Screaming.) Freddie Francis's They Came from Beyond Space has poor effects and a weak, meandering, script. I don't mean to be too harsh because I love the 50s and 60s sci-fi genre.  It's a film I will add to the shelf but won't be revisiting often. The Kino Blu-ray has the cache of the 'so bad it's good' film, Francis, Amicus and the double-David commentary. Your choice.

P.S. There is no chick as found on the cover/poster in a skimpy, sexy, space suit.

Gary Tooze

 


Menus / Extras

 


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Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

  

Distribution Kino - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

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