Dr. Who and the Daleks (1965)
When visiting his girlfriend Barbara, Ian is given a tour of the TARDIS by Dr Who. However he accidentally activates it and sends them to an unknown planet. Keen to explore they find themselves prisoners in a city controlled by the Daleks. The Daleks seek to rule the whole planet and get rid of the peace loving natives. When Dr Who et al accidentally help the Daleks to achieve this, they have no choice but to work with the natives to stop the Daleks.
Made to cash in on the huge popularity mid-sixties of both Dr Who and the Daleks, this film version has much higher values than the TV show, but doesn’t mean it’s better. The story is weak – like an introduction to the Doctor. It’s very basic and provides little opportunity for thrills – right up until the final battle. It’s not that bad, but for a film you’d expect more.
The Daleks themselves are good but the film uses them badly – we see them as things trapped in a city with little power outside of their own walls. To make matters worse them seem very vulnerable and easy to beat – all you have to do is push them very hard! They also don’t `do’ dialogue very well – they are used several times for long scenes where they talk to each other and explain the plot to the audience, these scenes are poor as their delivery mixed with the dialogue is terrible!
Cushing makes a good doctor and is better than many of the TV incarnations. Record breaking Roy Castle is quite good as Ian, but his comedy clowning doesn’t really fit in with the tone of the film. The female lead is vapid but Susan (played by Tovey) is actually pretty good.