TV Cream

Films: D is for...

Daleks: Invasion Earth 2150AD

Yay! The better of the two Cushing films, we say, with grim London-based apocalyptic violence, Ray Brooks and, of course, your very own Bernard Cribbins as the bumbling plod’s bumbling plod. Only bum note: the Daleks’ ship, which some bright spark thought would look more ‘futuristic’ if it was kitted out with all the trappings of a sort of bollocks hovercraft. Mind you, the pepperpots themselves were never masterpieces of slick, streamlined design and they seemed to do OK, so what do we know? We blame the Mods. Art Deco sci-fi we can take (Things to Come and their curlicued mates). The Nuclear Age ‘pointy bra’ aesthetic is admittedly more problematic, but it usually tends to hail from over the pond so we feel we can laugh it off without feeling guilty about contributing to the falling pound. But when a Gaggia machine straight out of the Two I’s coffee bar comes trundling at you demanding to see your driver’s licence, where to look? We shouldn’t be talking like this, we know, the ‘Lekkies being a design classic, a fait accompli long before we were even in a position to audition for the 2001 star child, but we still find ourselves thinking a few more drafts on the old drawing board mightn’t have gone amiss. The fact we have no problem with the aesthetic appearance of the Axons, Scaroth and the Nucleus of the Swarm in no way invalidates everything we’ve just said, nor does it make us look like the fools we secretly suspect we are.



  1. Glenn A

    May 14, 2016 at 12:22 pm

    Vastly better than the one with Roy Dedication Castle in, where the sets looked embarassingly cheap, this one worked far better as it was set on earth and more location filming was used. While purists hate Peter Cushing’s portrayl of the Doctor, I actually rate 2150 AD quite highly and it was light years ahead of the Lime Grove constrained television series of the time.

  2. Richardpd

    March 2, 2024 at 9:45 pm

    It’s been a while since I saw either Dr Who film, but some sources rate Dr Who & The Daleks better than this one.

    I remember DWM pointing out how the Dalek occupied earth feels like an alternative one where the Daleks invaded in 1950! Certainly it’s grittier then the first film, even with Bernard Cribbins getting to act as light relief.

  3. Sidney Balmoral James

    March 3, 2024 at 9:09 am

    I am not a massive Dr Who fan, but this film was very frightening when I was a child – the bit when the man in the wheelchair does his suicide run, Philip Madoc getting killed in the shed – and absolutely right, it doesn’t look like 1966 Britain at all, but that may be due to the cheapness of the film (Quatermass and the Pit another example from the same year which looks like it was set in about 1930!) Perhaps it is a British thing, be we do tend to underplay the quality of some of our home-grown films – God knows the British film industry has been dismal enough for most of its supposed life, we should be more enthusiastic about films like this – there was nothing comparable coming out of the US at this time (2001, which probably cost about fifty times more than this film, was made in Britain).

  4. Richardpd

    March 3, 2024 at 12:42 pm

    I first remember watching it in the mid 1980s & my ususally hard to shock older brother was moved by Dortmun’s sacrifice.

    Oddly Andrew Keir is in both this & the film version of Quatermass and the Pit, & looks like he’s counting down the days until he can claim his pension, though he was only in his early 40s at the time, younger than I am now & often people think I’m still in my 30s!

    By the mid 1960s the Hollywood studios had abandoned B-movies, with only the independents making comparable budgeted film. The 3 Stooges shorts were one of the last cheap releases from the majors, & look like they were made for less money than an episode of I Love Lucy!

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