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Century of Science Fiction

Editorial review of Century of Science Fiction courtesy of Amazon.com

Century of Science Fiction – Hosted by internationally acclaimed horror-meister Christopher Lee, this remarkable 5-DVD set features the very best of science fiction and fantasy from a century of cinematic magic, told in 26 haunting half-hour shows.

Trace the evolution of the science-fiction film from marvelous early trick shorts such as Melies’ A Trip To The Moon through classic sci-fi like The Day the Earth Stood Still and War of the Worlds to more recent mega-hits such as Independence Day and The Terminator.

This scintillating set features classic film clips, rare behind-the-scenes footage, and interviews with such sci-fi and movie legends as Arnold Schwarzenegger, Kevin Costner, William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, Vincent Price, Ray Bradbury, Charlton Heston, Sharon Stone, just to name a few.

Discover the secrets behind a hundred years of science-fiction magic and adventure!

DISC ONE

After the End – What “things to come” will there be after man destroys himself – and the world? Here’s a passel of post-apocalyptic pictures poised to please!

Alien Life Forms – We are not alone. Not by a long shot. We’re surrounded by sci-fi flicks filled with strange visitors from other planets with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men.

Amazing Inventions – Time machines, disintegrator machines, shrinking rays – they’re all here – and more!

Artificial Intelligence – Computers can be our friend, or they can be H.A.L. from 2001.

Dinosaurs – Long before Jurassic Park, dinosaurs roamed thru a variety of horror films, going all the way back to The Lost World in 1925.

DISC TWO

Final Frontier – “Science fiction” has become almost synonymous with “outer space” – and with good reason. Take a delightful trip among the stars – at warp speed.

Future Worlds – What will the world be like a hundred years from now? A thousand years from now? A million years from now? Science-fiction loves to play this particular game of “what if.”

H.G. Wells – A salute to the brilliant Victorian mind that gave us The Invisible Man, The Time Machine and War of the Worlds.

Jules Verne – A fantastic voyage through the work of the 19th century French fantasist who gave us 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and From The Earth To The Moon.

Lost Worlds – Could there really be saber-toothed tigers, cave men, and dinosaurs on isolated islands and atop towering mountain peaks? These lost worlds are finally found.

DISC THREE

Mad Scientists – How many times have sci-fi films centered on mad scientists? (And what were they mad at?) Many legendary performers have taken their turn playing sinister scientists and deranged doctors, working on fantastic formulas.

Mutations – An experiment with radiation and nuclear energy – and something goes terribly wrong. Let us count the different ways sci-fi films have dealt with this intriguing notion.

Powers of the Mind – This fascinating chapter takes a look at such mental manifestations as ESP, mind control, and telekinesis.

Queens of Sci-Fi – Zsa-Zsa Gabor played The Queen of Outer Space, but there were so many other sinister sci-fi sisters, as you’ll discover!

Ray Harryhausen – A salute to the king of stop-frame animation, who brought to life Jason and the Argonauts and The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, amongst many others.

DISC FOUR

Robots – From the sexy Art Deco robot in Metropolis to the low-budget gorilla-with-a-space-helmet robot in Robot Monster and on to R2D2 and C3PO, audiences have been fascinated by mechanical men (and women).

Sci-Fi Heroes – Just as westerns have cowboys and Indians and crime films have cops and robbers, sci-fi films have their Flash Gordons and Mings the Merciless; Luke Skywalkers and Darth Vaders, among so many other heroes and villains.

Sexy Sci-Fi – Science fiction isn’t all cold chrome robots and the freezing abyss of outer space. Hollywood wisely injected a large quotient of lovely ladies into their strange tales – and we’re all luckier for it.

Spawn of the Atom – The A-bomb. The H-bomb. From the conclusion of World War II thru the 1950s (and beyond), people were fascinated by – and frightened of – the atom bomb and its horrible power. This made it a natural subject for sci-fi movies.

Stars – There are the stars that astronauts travel to and then there is that “other” kind of star which, in the world of sci-fi, included John Agar, Ken Tobey, Richard Carlson, Charlton Heston, and so many others.

DISC FIVE

Strange Invaders – Not all aliens come in the form of little green men with disintegrator guns. Here’s a salute to the germs, blobs, viruses (viri?) and bacteria that sci-fi filmmakers have unleashed on audiences over the years.

The End of the World – From Biblical floods to natural disasters and plagues of giant insects, it’s not always man who manages to destroy the world, as vividly illustrated in these sci-fi favorites.

The Serials – Just as there were western and gangster serials, science fiction also had its fair share of 12-chapter cliffhangers, going back to the 1930s.

Time Travelers – H.G. Wells wasn’t the only one who wondered what it would be like to travel forward – or backward – in time. It’s a staple of the sci-fi genre, as seen in this overview of time-travel films.

U.F.O.s – Swamp gas? Airplanes? Secret government weapons? Or are they really from “out there”? Here’s a look at all the sci-fi flicks that have concerned themselves with flying saucers.

Weird Worlds – A fascinating look at how sci-fi films have portrayed man’s desire to travel to other planets, as seen by such early visionaries as Jules Verne, Georges Melies, and H.G. Wells