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144 Reviews
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47 of 49 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Movie, Very Good DVD
Anchor Bay Entertainment did an excellent job of transferring this British WWII classic to DVD. Scratches and blemishes in the picture are virtually nonexistent. And it IS Region 1, so it WILL play in just about any DVD player in the US and Canada (for those of you in the US and Canada).

If all you care about is having a good copy of this movie, then I highly...
Published on March 16, 2007 by Sure Thing

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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Terrible Print of Vintage British War Film
Ripoff. This print is a cheap transfer from a low-resolution and contrast VHS copy.

Excellent acting by Todd, Redgrave and others -- all spoiled by such an inferior print.

No extras, no subtitles, scratchy audio.

DVD also arrived severely scratched. It had been bouncing around inside the case.
Published on June 20, 2011 by Rene Chastain


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47 of 49 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Movie, Very Good DVD, March 16, 2007
By 
Sure Thing "surething88" (San Diego County, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Dam Busters (DVD)
Anchor Bay Entertainment did an excellent job of transferring this British WWII classic to DVD. Scratches and blemishes in the picture are virtually nonexistent. And it IS Region 1, so it WILL play in just about any DVD player in the US and Canada (for those of you in the US and Canada).

If all you care about is having a good copy of this movie, then I highly recommend this DVD. If you also want special features like trailers, "Making of" documentaries, deleted scenes, etc., then you may want to wait until someone puts out a "special edition." All this DVD offers apart from the great transfer is scene selection (that missing star is actually half a star for not having more in the way of special features).

In the meantime, I recommend also getting Paul Brickhill & Guy Gibson's books ("The Dam Busters" and "Enemy Coast Ahead," respectively) upon which the movie is based along with the DVD of the PBS documentary "Secrets of the Dead: Bombing Nazi Dams" (which incidentally uses footage from this movie though uncredited). If you can find it, you might also want the audio cassette version of Brickhill's book read by the film's co-star, Richard Todd.
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the one to buy..., October 27, 2006
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This review is from: The Dam Busters (DVD)
As with the Congress Entertainment DVD, this is a straight dub of the 1954 British film, including all the original video and audio. The story is very interesting, historically important, and well acted. I saw it not very long after its original release and enjoyed it then, and still do.

Given the very high regard the British have for Wing Commander Gibson, who was awarded Britain's highest military honor (Victoria Cross) for this raid and died in action just over a year later, I'm sure that - in 1954 - they were being very careful about accuracy, and left in historically accurate details which some will find offensive.

By "modern" (pre computer graphic animation) standards, the special effects are a bit primitive, but quite well done for 1954. Unlike the Congress Entertainment DVD, the audio and video quality are excellent, and the presentation is quite professional. Both may have been taken from the same original, as they both have a momentary frame freeze at one point.
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31 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars TRUE LIFE WW2 ADVENTURE, August 12, 2006
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This review is from: The Dam Busters (DVD)
This is a review of the movie only but past experience with Anchor Bay tells me the quality will be pretty good. This is the story of the planning and execution of the raid that led to the destruction of the Ruhr Valley Hydroelectric Dams during WW2 by the RAF. Very well acted and details the incredible engineering that went into the design of the bombs and the flying skill of the aircrews to be able to complete the mission. Outstanding WW2 movie. Semi-documentary in style but none the less a great piece of history. Don't miss this one.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing History, June 29, 2004
By 
Georg R. Benz "Bentley947" (Oviedo, Florida United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dam Busters (DVD)
This story has been a favorite of mine since I first saw the movie on TV in the 50's. I've since researched this event and am pleased to say that the movie is extremely accurate with few exceptions for dramatic license. The attack and destruction of two of the great dams of the industrial Ruhr Valley in Germany during World War Two is beautifully filmed, even in black & white. The special effects during the attack are hair-raising, even by today's standards. The details of how the special bombs used, and the technique to use them were developed move the story along nicely culminating with the intense attacks and the bitterswet aftermath- aircrew and bomber losses were over 40%. The musical score compliments the action very well and the "Dam Buster March" is a tune that can be whisteled all day long. This movie is a stirring tribute to Wing Commander Guy Gibson who led the raid, his courageous squadron, and Barnes Wallace, the genius who developed the bombs. For sheer daring, courage, and determination, this movie ranks tops along with "The Great Escape" and "Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo". A note to those who have seen the TV version- the video is unedited from the original and Guy Gibson's dog's name was NOT Trigger.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who Needs Special Effects?, June 20, 2008
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This review is from: The Dam Busters (DVD)
This film was exciting when I saw it in 1956 in Holland, and it is just as exciting now. How can one miss with the superb talent of Michael Redgrave, the stirring music of Eric Coates, and a gripping yarn that happens to be true? Much of the fascination of this film stems from its depiction of Barnes Wallis's process of planning and perfecting the bouncing bomb, and persuading Whitehall to go along with his eccentric idea. Equally interesting are the various makeshift devices, such as the range-finding lights and the home-made bombsight.

"The Dam Busters" tells the story of ingenuity and courage during wartime. In the wrong hands, such a topic might be heavy handed, but one of the things that British filmmakers of the 1950s did so well was to deliver their patriotic messages with a touch of wry humor mixed with just the right amount of pathos. The camera may not focus on exploding planes or dwell on the devastating effects for the inhabitants of the Ruhr valley, but in leaving such details to the collective imagination of the audience, the director has developed cinematic understatement into a fine art.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing movie..., November 18, 2007
By 
ADSHippin (Northern Virginia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Dam Busters (DVD)
If you are a fan of WWII history then this is the film for you. It is the true story of RAF Bomber Command's raids on the Möhne and Eder dams. Additionally it's the story of 617 squadron's birth; which even today is one the RAF's most successful and highly decorated squadrons. The special effects are a bit primitive by today's standards; however because of this the actors actually have to act. If you can find it I strongly encourage reading the terrific book The Dam Busters by Paul Brickhill.

Some of the more interesting points of the movie are: The death of Wing Commander Gibson's dog, just before the raid. Then there is the somber silence we have for the crews who where lost. Like the missing crews at the mess table, or the "If I don't return letter" sitting on the desk. Then at the very end Guy Gibson telling Barnes Wallis after the raid that he needs "to write a few letters before turning in".

On the comical side there is the poultry farmer writing a nasty letter to the RAF. This poor man has the misfortune to live near one of the lakes that 617 squadron is using to practice over before the raid. The poor old fellow is just trying to make an honest living and support Britain's war effort, when there are dozens of 4 engine Lancaster Bombers roaring over his farm at 60 Feet off the ground day and night.

A minor word of caution to any viewers who are Black, the name of Wing Commander Gibson's dog refers to what once a legitimate colour (very dark chocolate brown) in Great Britain. As opposed to the more modern and now almost universal racial swear for people who are Black. Please remember this 1952 movie was intended to be a reasonable historically accurate movie, based upon the events of 1942.

Again a really top notch movie with some superb shots of the Lancaster Bomber.

PS. I wonder how many people who watch this film realize that there is now only TWO Lancaster's still flying? Sad but true.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant then, excellent still, January 3, 2008
This review is from: The Dam Busters (DVD)
I had the good fortune to first see this movie in the cinema in 1956 in Germany. Perhaps surprisingly, the German audience cheered wildly as the bombs exploded! On the other hand, maybe they just enjoyed a gripping tale, superbly acted. My father, after the movie, took me to see the (rebuilt) dams as we lived quite close to them. I vividly remember standing on the Mohne Dam, looking at the new concrete between the towers, and imagining the Lancaster bombers rushing toward me over the water. The movie has been a favorite of mine ever since, though I've had to put up with TV reruns or scratched and worn VHS until this wonderful new edition.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classics just get better, August 29, 2008
This review is from: The Dam Busters (DVD)
The classic war story, unembellished and pretty much the way Paul Brickhill wrote it in his book. Why oh why movie makers today feel the need to remake films which frankly cannot be improved upon is beyond me. Watching this again makes me realize that Peter Jackson is setting himself a monumental task, but if it helps educate another generation about one of the great events of the second world war, so be it. I would still encourage everyone to watch the original. This is a great story, a true story and a great piece of history, well told and well directed (even George Lucas borrowed liberally from it for his Death Star destruction scene in Star Wars!). If I were to pick just one film to represent the courage, angst and ingenuity of the RAF in World War II, this would be the one.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Terrible Print of Vintage British War Film, June 20, 2011
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Ripoff. This print is a cheap transfer from a low-resolution and contrast VHS copy.

Excellent acting by Todd, Redgrave and others -- all spoiled by such an inferior print.

No extras, no subtitles, scratchy audio.

DVD also arrived severely scratched. It had been bouncing around inside the case.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars VHS Copy, October 7, 2010
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Think my title says it all..yet another craptacular ripoff vhs to dvd transfer...such a shame as this is the second ww2 movie i have had this issue with(the heros of telmark) being the other oh well guess i will wait til its on TCM
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The Dam Busters
The Dam Busters by Michael Anderson (DVD - 2012)
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