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Tractator29

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16 reviews in total 
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Very interesting, 24 July 2010
7/10

A decent effort this, a really interesting look at the making of one of the lesser regarded stories "Underworld". A story with a good first episode which degenerates rapidly.

The documentary looks at the budgetary and production issues surrounding the story presenting them in a way that is interesting and engaging without dumbing them down.

At the time the BBC was, like the country, suffering from rampant inflation and budgetary issues. Whereas previous seasons had been allowed to go over budget that was not allowed by the time Season 15 was in production.

All in all a good effort.

13 out of 15 people found the following review useful:
Superb, 21 June 2010
9/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This season of Doctor Who has been an impressive departure from the previous 4 seasons of the show since it has returned.

Vincent and the Doctor was another step in the right direction.

A well written and well characterised story where the Doctor travels back in time to meet Van Gogh after spotting a monster in the window of a church in one of his pictures. They meet him, the monster cannot be seen, well it can by Van Gogh and that is it. Hence this plays to the madness he had.

The story is not just about the monster, it is about Van Gogh and advancing the ongoing story arc. It also fulfilled that function as well.

We also had a really, really, touching moment when Van Gogh was taken to the future and listened to the curator speaking about his genius. Note to RTD - THAT is how to do emotion.

All in all this was a satisfying story, well acted, well written and Matt Smith was brilliant. The heir to Tom Baker. No goofy gurning but a real Doctor like presence. Moff made a stroke of genius when he cast him.

13 out of 45 people found the following review useful:
An unholy mess, 21 June 2010
2/10

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

So this is what the season has been building up to ? We have had the crack in time as the theme running through the season, akin to Bad Wolf in season 1. Unlike the episode Bad Wolf this is a let down primarily for a few reasons.

I do not wish to give any spoilers away. The return of various faces from the past made little sense. The episode started off trying to link strands from the previous episodes, then we had some padding in and around Stonehenge which felt rather laboured, then we had a bit of a fan overload with the assembled monsters from the past. A few namechecked were not there. The story carries on the theme from Human Nature about the Doctor being the threat. It also re-emphasises the point about the Doctor not being put into a trap. However it is rather clumsily done. I like Moffatt's work. Compared to the drivel from his predecessor his stories are well constructed but this just felt like it was a tick box of various elements to appeal to hardcore fans and new series junkies alike. All well and fine but that does not make good TV.

The twist about what was inside the Pandorica was interesting, indeed the best thing about it and no I am not going to tell you even though this review is spoiler marked. You will need to watch it. You can then suffer as I did.

0 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Predictable as ever, 25 September 2009
2/10

Sorry but this does not cut it for me. When looking at a documentary to take in the turbulent Colin Baker years it is easy to dwell on the negative as this does.

There were many positives in Colin's reign too.

These should have been mentioned.

For instance Colins vision for the Doctor, he had the most inauspicious of starts strangling Peri but he wanted to get towards a more mellow, multi-layered character as he has done in the Big Finish audios. It would also have been nice to have had more on Mel. I appreciate Langford was not interested - cannot say I blame her - but the character was underdeveloped and unappreciated. Gary Russell has shown that with his books and Big finish.

1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Why give this to a Doctor Who fan ?, 19 December 2008
6/10

This is not bad, do not get me wrong. Stradling gets to grips with the subject relatively well but in a rather pedestrian way however my overall gripe with this documentary is that it is not just about City of Death which is a pretty run of the mill Doctor Who story but is also about the late great Douglas Adams. Now surely a Doctor Who fan would have a natural bias to his Doctor Who work, okay this is a Doctor Who DVD after all, but come on Restoration Team and show the man some respect. Douglas Adams was far more than just another employee on Doctor Who. He was a legend and deserved far more from the DVD production process than this.

The other issue I have is one of accessibility. Stradling deconstructs the subject matter but never in a way to welcome outsiders in. It is all very very much tailored to the long term Doctor Who fan and as such is rather exclusive.

However those are minor gripes, I found it quite adequate and quite enjoyable.

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Why give this to a Doctor Who fan ?, 19 December 2008
6/10

This is not bad, do not get me wrong. Stradling gets to grips with the subject relatively well but in a rather pedestrian way however my overall gripe with this documentary is that it is not just about City of Death which is a pretty run of the mill Doctor Who story but is also about the late great Douglas Adams. Now surely a Doctor Who fan would have a natural bias to his Doctor Who work, okay this is a Doctor Who DVD after all, but come on Restoration Team and show the man some respect. Douglas Adams was far more than just another employee on Doctor Who. He was a legend and deserved far more from the DVD production process than this.

The other issue I have is one of accessibility. Stradling deconstructs the subject matter but never in a way to welcome outsiders in. It is all very very much tailored to the long term Doctor Who fan and as such is rather exclusive.

However those are minor gripes, I found it quite adequate and quite enjoyable.

Well done Brendan, another winner, 18 December 2008
10/10

There are precious few superlatives in the English language to describe this incredible biopic on Davros from the extremely safe pair of hands that is Brendan Sheppard.

Brendan deals with an old subject, Davros the creator of the Daleks, in a vibrant fresh and dynamic way. He brings the subject to life so much so that fans who had already bought the releases as standalone sales flocked to buy this release in part to see this highly talked about documentary and in part to see the new Remembrance of the Daleks.

I find it hard to accept the standard of other DVD extras in the Doctor Who range when you have releases as sublime as this one which set the standard others have to achieve.

Well Done Brendan.

A Matter of Time (2007) (V)
1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Seminal work on Graham Williams time as producer, 18 December 2008
8/10

Ed Stradling gets back to form with a seminal piece of work covering the tenure of the late Graham Williams as producer of Doctor Who.

Like Ronnie Bleasdale I like to be informed in DVD extras on Doctor Who. This extra does it in spades. There is so much to it that it really merits a second viewing. This is fascinating and the interviews come thick and fast.

This documentary really plays to Stradlings strengths, covering a top level issue and giving a detailed overview of a subject rather than an introspective on a particular story. Written by jobbing Big Finish actor Nicholas Pegg this is an affectionate look at a tumultuous era in the shows history and does it so well.

A Darker Side (2007) (V)
0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Oh dear,this adds nothing really., 18 December 2008
3/10

Well the first thing you can say is that this is not that interesting. You could say it is rather dull. But then would it ever be interesting given that it is covering a story that is well known as to its roots. At least Ed Stradling, who usually turns out decent documentaries, tries to make it more relevant to today with a few taped on references to New Who, undoubtedly part of 2Entertains efforts to make the old DVD's more accessible. However you feel this is all done in a rather token way as it does not in my view add to the documentary overall.

Probably the oddest thing about this documentary is interviewing an actor who appeared in it who is killed in the second minute on screen. I mean what on earth does he have to contribute. He probably was only there for the first day.

This is really one for the purist who knows little about this story. Wonder how many of them there are.

1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
One of the better talking heads, 18 December 2008
6/10

Highlander is the rather predictably named DVD extra retrospective covering the contribution of Fraser Hines to the Doctor Who genre. Now Hines covers rather well, and all credit to the interviewer, his career in Doctor Who and peppers the extra liberally with interesting stories and anecdotes. I am guessing here that as a youngster Hines was a bit of a lad and that undertone follows the interview through as do often recounted but still enjoyable stories about his relationship with Patrick Troughton.

Very very watchable and very very well presented and a little different to the norm.


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