Scott of the Antarctic NR CC

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(16) IMDb 7/10

This is the true story of British explorer Robert Falcon Scott and his ill-fated expedition attempt to be the first to videoover the South Pole only to be beaten there by the Norwegian expedition of Amundsen.

Starring:
John Mills, Derek Bond
Runtime:
1 hour 50 minutes

Scott of the Antarctic

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3.8 out of 5 stars
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30 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Balbach on January 8, 2009
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`Scott of the Antarctic` (1949) is an early technicolor film made in England (the B&W DVD cover is inaccurate). It is a fictional re-telling of Scott's last voyage to the South Pole in 1913. The best written account is The Worst Journey in the World (1922). I watched this after finishing `Worst Journey` and didn't have high expectations but was very surprised and delighted, the film added to and enhances the book, at least the part about Scott's trip to the pole. This was a big budget studio film, the actors and sets and music are all top rate, some critics say it was robbed at the Oscars that year. The film goes to lengths to be accurate - the gear is just like one sees in the old pictures and films, the actors look like the real people, the events are for the most part all correct. More so, the film was able to capture an aspect that I had read about elsewhere, but didn't pick up in `Worst Journey`, and that is the sort of pseudo-Medieval errant knights romanticism that was a sub-text to the expedition. The actors look, talk and act like they belong in the era - a film like this could never be made today because there are no actors that could play the parts convincingly. This is really a must-see for anyone who has read Scott or `Worst Journey` as it will bring alive in full color the gear, people, scenes, and the general spirit and mood of the time.

There is another DVD edition of this film on Amazon with the blue cover and from the reviews there are complaints of a poor transfer. I'm no expert on these things but I didn't see any problem with the version reviewed here (with the B&W cover). The color looks a bit off only because it's an early Technicolor and the sound is perfectly fine. It's a "print-on-demand" DVD, but looks like a normal factory product.
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TRINITY and SYNERGY are two of the many smaller DVD purveyors who market public domain films that are often in unrestored condition. Picture and sound quality is solely dependent on source material. "Below fair to good" is typical for their product.

SCOTT OF THE ANTARCTIC was chosen the Royal Command Performance motion picture of 1948. Astounding Technicolor scenery abounds in this superb biopic of the 1911-12 Scott expedition tragedy, which is made all the more realistic by Capt. Scott's actual diary and many of the explorers' personal effects, loaned to the production by The British Museum. A magnificent film score was provided by Vaughan Williams.

The hut where the Scott expedition hunkered down during a bitter Antarctic winter still stands and is a tourist destination for any souls hearty enough to endure the harsh climate of Earth's southernmost continent.

SYNOPSIS--
Robert Falcon Scott and a small crew's attempt to be first at the South Pole is thwarted by Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen, and their return to base becomes impossible in blizzard conditions. All perish when supplies run out. A well-acted story with realistic weather conditions that leave a viewer chilled to the core. Highest possible recommendation!

Parenthetical number preceding title is a 1 to 10 imdb viewer poll rating.

(6.8) Scott of the Antarctic (UK-1948) - John Mills/Diana Churchill/Derek Bond/Kenneth More/Christopher Lee
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I read the epic Worst Journey 5 stars( see my review) and wondered how this DVD could compare. It was made in the 40s and is in early technicolor. Scott played by John Mills was fantastic.

We see Scott, Dr. Bill, Owens trying to get enough money for the expedition. Scott and Bill are torn from their wives to try to be the first to the South Pole. We see them leaving on an old coal burning ship with dogs, ponies and snow tractors. Amundsen's teacher tells them before he only recommends dogs, dogs, dogs. You cant eat your snow machine if it brakes down. But Scott had his own ideas to use all 3 methods of getting to the pole. Shortly the tractors fail and the ponies don't last too long and are killed. The dogs only take them part way to the pole and they must manhandle their sleds. Scott takes 4 others to the pole rather than the original group of 3 so he over extends the polar party. Plus the weather gets really bad for that time of year.

Amundsen beats Scott's polar party to the pole as he used all dogs.

I developed great empathy toward Scott and his men trapped in their tent only 11 miles from One Ton depot where there was plenty of food and fuel. I could feel their pain, sickness, massive frostbite, loss of feeling in their limbs and starvation. All perish.You feel so sorry for these men who gave 110% trying there hardest to come back from the pole only to be blizzard in 11 miles from food and fuel.

In the book Worse Journey in the World there was more talk of Killer Whales trying to crack through thin ice or try to topple flows to get to dogs, ponies and men to eat them. Also penguin and seal hunting for food. The DVD did not show this although I didn't expect them to kill penguins, ponies etc.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By JoeInPic on December 6, 2011
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Scott of the Antarctic is a motion picture full of the trials and tribulations of adventure; it exemplifies the human condition and our attempts at conquest. The acting is in the standard British "stiff upper lip" model but none the less superb, as is to be expected from John Mills. Also, this copy, provides an adequate soundtrack, unlike the other DVD production copy, also available from Amazon, which presents an extremely noisey sountrack on our DVD system. All in all I am extremely satisfied with the content and production of this dramatic work of art.
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