The Won­der­ful Worlds of ray har­ry­hausen Vol 1

Stop-mo­tion guru’s early hits

SFX - - Reviews -

re­leased 18 sepTeM­Ber 1955/1957/1960 | pG | Blu-ray

Di­rec­tors robert Gor­don, Jack sher, Nathan H Ju­ran Cast Kerwin Mathews, Ken­neth Tobey, Faith domer­gue, Wil­liam Hop­per

Har­ry­hausen fans ex­pect­ing his usual mon­ster­packed fan­tasies may feel short­changed by this trio of early films. 20 Mil­lion Miles To Earth is prime Har­ry­hausen, but the other two are no­table for their lack of stop-mo­tion set-pieces. It Came From Be­neath The Sea’s beastie is cam­era-shy un­til the fi­nale, while The 3 Worlds Of Gul­liver of­fers only a wheezy squir­rel and a crocodile.

This is a mop­ping-up ex­er­cise, col­lect­ing the re­main­ing Columbiare­leased Har­ry­hausen films for their UK Blu-ray pre­mieres. As a bonus, It Comes and 20 Mil­lion Miles are pre­sented in both their orig­i­nal black and white and colourised ver­sions. And it is a bonus. While colouri­sa­tion is of­ten a dirty word, the re­sults gen­uinely give the films new life.

20 Mil­lion Miles is the best by far, with a fast-grow­ing Venu­sian lizard trash­ing Rome. The stodgy It Came has lots of mil­i­tary types look­ing more wary of a lib­er­ated fe­male sci­en­tist than a gi­ant “six­to­pus”. Gul­liver, mean­while, is a gaudy take on the Lil­liput and Brob­d­ing­nag sec­tions of Jonathan Swift’s novel. It’s quaint and cheesy, but it ain’t no Sin­bad.

Ex­tras Oo­dles – mostly from pre­vi­ous re­leases, but with new in­ter­views where film­mak­ers wax lyri­cal about Ray. There are com­men­taries for It Came... and 20 Mil­lion..., plus archival ma­te­rial and an 80-page book­let. Dave Golder

Gul­liver’s Kerwin Mathews spent eight hours tied down for the scene where he wakes on a Liliputian beach.

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