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Doctor Who: City of Death (Story 105)


4.5 out of 5 stars 116 customer reviews

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(Nov 08, 2005)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

In a story written by Hitchhiker's Guide's Douglas Adams and producer Graham Williams, the Doctor (Tom Baker) and Romana ta a holiday in Paris where they unravel a mystery involving six original Mona Lisas!

The late Douglas Adams (The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) co-wrote this enormously popular four-part story from 1979, which pits the Doctor (Tom Baker) and Romana (Lalla Ward) against a time-traveling alien (Julian Glover) whose body, fragmented by an accident, spurred evolution millions of years ago. Now restored to his full (and horrific) form, he plans to travel back in time and prevent the destruction of his ship--which in turn would profoundly affect the course of humanity. A terrific blend of science-fiction thrills and humor (well-played by Baker and Ward), City of Death also benefits from its Paris locations and terrific performances by Glover and Space: 1999's Catherine Schell, as well as a pair of unexpected cameos from John Cleese and Eleanor Bron as art critics. The story's high caliber was rewarded with phenomenal ratings (reportedly, the largest ever for Doctor Who), and has remained a fan favorite ever since.

DVD features
Thanks to its popularity, the two-disc DVD of City of Death comes with an abundance of typically topnotch supplemental features. The commentary by Glover, co-star Tom Chadbon, and director Michael Hayes, is the longest and most informative of the extras, but it's well-matched by Paris in the Springtime, a 45-minute making-of featurette that offers rare archival interviews with Adams and many of the cast (but not Baker or Ward, sadly) and crew. Paris, W12 offers 20 minutes of studio footage taken from 1/2-inch videotape, while Prehistoric Landscapes and Chicken Wrangler are very different views of the story's special effects (the latter is a particularly amusing glimpse at the challenges of working with live animals). Finally, there's Eye on Blatchford, a wry parody of BBC "human interest" news items, here focusing on another alien attempting to live peacefully in the rural English countryside. Production notes and photos and a batch of well-concealed Easter eggs round out this highly enjoyable set. --Paul Gaita

Special features

  • Documentary
  • Featurette
  • Other
  • Photo gallery
  • Production Notes

  • Product details

    • Actors: Tom Baker, Lalla Ward, Julian Glover, Catherine Schell, John Cleese
    • Directors: Michael Hayes
    • Writers: Graham Williams, Douglas Adams
    • Producers: Graham Williams
    • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
    • Language: English (Unknown)
    • Subtitles: English
    • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
    • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
    • Number of discs: 2
    • Rated:
      Not Rated
    • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
    • DVD Release Date: November 8, 2005
    • Run Time: 100 minutes
    • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (116 customer reviews)
    • ASIN: B000B7QCJ0
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #47,432 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
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    • Learn more about "Doctor Who: City of Death (Story 105)" on IMDb

    Customer reviews

    Top customer reviews

    TOP 50 REVIEWERon August 8, 2014
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    on May 17, 2014
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    on November 17, 2005
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